An Unlikely Victory 1777 to 1783
January 3, 1777 – Washington`s troops defeated the British forces at Princeton and made them go back toward New Brunswick. Washington then sat up winter quarters at Morristown located at New Jersey. During the winter, the number of Washington’s army decreased to about a thousand men as enlistments expired and deserters began to escape. By spring, recruits arrived, Washington had 9000 men in his army.
March 12, 1777 – The Continental Congress relocated to Philadelphia from Baltimore after Washington’s defeated the British in New Jersey.
April 27, 1777 – American troops headed by Benedict Arnold broke down the British at Ridgefield, Connecticut.
June 14, 1777 – Congress upheld the flag of the United States that consisting of 13 stars and 13 white and red stripes by the resolution: “Resolved, That the flag of the thirteen United States be thirteen stripes, alternate red and white; that the union be thirteen stars, white in a blue field, representing a new constellation.” John Paul Jones was appointed by Congress to the position of captain of the 18-gun vessel Ranger with his goals to attack towns on England coast.
June 17, 1777 – A British force consisting of 7700 soldiers led by Gen. John Burgoyne intervened from Canada, transferred down Lake Champlain in direction of Albany, attempting to join Gen. Howe who would come from north from New York City, trying in such way to separate the territory of New England from other colonies.
July 6, 1777 – Gen. Burgoyne’s troops captured the Fort Ticonderoga on Lake Champlain as the result of the defeat of Americans. It was a very significant military supplement point that was highly requested by Washington’s forces. The loss of the fort extremely decreased Americans’ morale spirit.
July 23, 1777 – British Gen. Howe, in union with 15,000 men, passed from New York for the Chesapeake Bay to occupy Philadelphia, instead of sailing north to meet up with Gen. Burgoyne.
July 27, 1777 – Marquis de Lafayette, who was a 19-year-old French from the aristocratic family, came to Philadelphia and served in American army as a volunteer without any payment. Congress appointed him to the position of principal general in the Continental Army. Lafayette became an outstanding military professional and one of Gen. Washington’s most confident advisers.
August 1, 1777 – Gen. Burgoyne arrived at the Hudson after spending a month crossing 23 miles of wilderness that divided the southern tip of Lake Champlain from the northern tip of the Hudson River.
August 16, 1777 – In the Battle of Bennington, militiamen from Vermont, supported by Massachusetts soldiers, broke down a division of 800 German Hessians provided by Gen. Burgoyne to grab horses.
August 25, 1777 – British Gen. Howe came down at the Chesapeake Bay with his troops.
September 9-11, 1777 – In the Battle of Brandywine Creek, Gen. Washington and the main American Army consisting of 10,500 men were enforced to come back toward Philadelphia by Gen. Howe’s British troops. Both sides suffered huge losses. Congress relocated from Philadelphia to Lancaster, in Pennsylvania.
September 26, 1777 – British forces under Gen. Howe captured Philadelphia. Congress then moved to York, Pennsylvania.
October 7, 1777 – American forces won in the Battle of Saratoga that was deemed the primary victory during the Revolution due to Gen. Horatio Gates and Gen. Benedict Arnold. They destroyed the forces of Gen. Burgoyne and injured 600 British casualties. American lost only 150 injured people.
October 17, 1777 – Gen. Burgoyne and his entire army consisting of 5700 men surrendered to the Americans lead by Gen. Gates. The British troops were relocated to Boston, boarded on vessels and went back to England after they promised not to fight against Americans in the war. News about the American victory at Saratoga spread to Europe and increased support of the American protesters. Especially in Paris, great celebration in honor of American victory took place. The French Royal Court received Ben Franklin. Therefore, France then recognized the independence of America.
November 15, 1777 – Congress passed the Articles of Confederation because of pending ratification by the governments of the individual states. This document was deemed as the first constitution with the major principle to maintain the independence of the country. Under the Articles, Congress is the authority of state government.
December 17, 1777 – At Valley Forge located in Pennsylvania, the Continental Army headed by Washington established quarters for winter.
February 6, 1778 – American and French representatives concluded two agreements at the meeting in Paris: a Treaty of Amity and Commerce and a Treaty of Alliance. From this moment France officially recognized the United States and served as the main supplier of military equipment to Washington’s army. Both countries confirmed their plan to fight until Americans received final independence, the condition was not to conclude any truce with Britain without the other’s agreement on that, and guaranteeing each other’s possessions in America against all other states.
The American attempt to obtain independence was extended and turned into a world war. After British ships sat fire on French vessels, the two states announced the commencing of war. Spain joined in 1779 in alliance with France. The following year, Britain began the war against the Dutch who had commercial relations with the French and Americans. Moreover, in addition to the war in America, the British was engaged in a fight in the Mediterranean, Africa, India, the West Indies, and on the high seas. All this time it was faced with a possibility of invasion by the French.
February 23, 1778 – Baron von Steuben of Prussia came to Valley Forge to join the Continental Army. Unfortunately, he was assigned to train and drill Washington’s troops, who suffered from poor morale state as consequence of cold, hunger, illnesses, bad supplies and desertions that lasted during all the winter.
March 16, 1778 – the British Parliament established a Peace Commission that was aimed to negotiate with the Americans. The commission then moved to Philadelphia where it stated that Britain would agree to all American demands, except the proclamation of independence. Congress rejected such offer.
May 8, 1778 – British General Henry Clinton was appointed to the position of Gen. Howe as commander of all British army in the America.
May 30, 1778 – 300 Iroquois Indians fired up Cobleskill at New York, that defined the commence of the terror campaign against American boundary settlements, supported by the British.
June 18, 1778 – British Gen. Clinton retreated his troops from Philadelphia and sent them across New Jersey toward New York City, because of suspecting about possible blockade by French ships. Americans then returned to Philadelphia.
June 19, 1778 – Washington relocated troops from Valley Forge to prevent the plan of Gen. Clinton.
June 27/28, 1778 – The Battle of Monmouth took place in New Jersey where Washington’s army and Gen. Clinton’s army combated to a standoff. On hearing that American Gen. Charles Lee decided to retreat, the disappointed Gen. Washington and Gen. Clinton continued toward New York.
July 2, 1778 – Congress again changed its location to Philadelphia.
July 3, 1778 – British Loyalists and Indians in union killed a huge number of American settlers in the Wyoming Valley of northern Pennsylvania.
July 8, 1778 – Gen. Washington established the headquarters at West Point located in New York.
July 10, 1778 – France announced the declaration of war to Britain.
August 8, 1778 – American land army and French ships tried to conduct a common siege against Newport on Rhode Island. But because of unfavorable weather conditions and delays of the troops their attempts failed. The French fleet damaged by bad weather was transferred to Boston for repair.
September 14, 1778 – Ben Franklin was elected to the position of the American diplomatic representative in France.
November 11, 1778 – At Cherry Valley located in New York, Loyalists and Indians massacred 40 American residents.
December 29, 1778 – The British started a principal campaign in southern districts attempting to capture Savannah in Georgia that was continued by with the capture of Augusta a month later.
April 1-30, 1779 – In response to frequent raids on colonial towns by Indians, American troops arrived from North Carolina and Virginia and combated with Chickamauga Indian villages in Tennessee.
May 10, 1779 – British troops sat fire in Portsmouth and Norfolk, belonging to Virginia.
June 1, 1779 – The British Gen. Clinton initiated the departure of 6000 men up the Hudson toward West Point.
June 16, 1779 – Spain made declaration regarding beginning of war against England but did not unite in alliance with the American revolutionary forces.
July 5-11, 1779 – Loyalists attacked towns on the coast of Connecticut, setting on fire Fairfield, Norwalk and ships in New Haven port.
July 10, 1779 – Naval ships owned by Massachusetts state were broken by the British attack while they attempted to occupy the Loyalist fortress of Castine, Maine.
August 14, 1779 – Congress upheld a peace plan by which approve independence of the state, final British evacuation of America and free navigation regulations on the Mississippi River.
August 29, 1779 – American side won the battle against the combined Indian and Loyalist forces at Elmira, New York. After the victory, American army passed northwest and destroyed nearly 40 Cayuga and Seneca Indian villages in response to the terrorist actions exercised by them against Americans.
Sept. 3 – Oct. 28 – Americans faced the defeat resulting from the attack on the British at Savannah, Georgia. Among the 800 American union losses was the Count Casimir Pulaski from Poland. Britain causalities were 140 persons.
September 23, 1779 – Near the English coast, John Paul Jones combated in the battle with a British frigate. When the British required to give up, Commander Jones definitely refused, then captured the frigate before his own vessel was drowned.
September 27, 1779 – Congress assigned John Adams to be a representative for negotiations regarding the peace treaty with England.
October 17, 1779 – Washington established winter quarters at Morristown, New Jersey, where his troops were located during winter without extremely needed supplies and facilities. As the result the dissatisfaction increased, and moral spirit and motivation significantly decreased.
December 26, 1779 – British Gen. Clinton set sail from New York with 8000 men on board in the direction of Charleston, South Carolina, who arrived there on Feb. 1.
April 8, 1780 – The British attacked Charleston as warships passed thought the cannons of Fort Moultrie and arrived in Charleston port. Washington supplied reinforcements for this battle.
May 6, 1780 – The Britain forces occupied Fort Moultrie at Charleston in South Carolina.
May 12, 1780 – The biggest American defeat during the entire Revolutionary War resulted from the British occupying Charleston and its garrison that consisted of 5400 soldiers (the entire southern American Army) and included four ships and military equipment. British causalities were 225 men.
May 25, 1780 – Because of harsh weather during the winter, Gen. Washington experienced a serious threat of defiance at his camp in Morristown, New Jersey. Two Continental regiments organized an armed march throughout the camp and required immediate salary payment (belated for 5 months) and full consignments. Troops from Pennsylvania ceased the rebellion. Two leaders of the riot were then executed.
June 11, 1780 – A new Massachusetts constitution was upheld by the state government. Its main author was John Adams. It was the first legal document that established the following: “It is the right as well as the duty of all men in society, publicly and at stated seasons, to worship the Supreme Being, the great Creator, and Preserver of the universe. And no subject shall be hurt, molested, or restrained, in his person, liberty, or estate, for worshipping God in the manner and season most agreeable to the dictates of his own conscience, or for his religious profession or sentiments, provided he doth not disturb the public peace or obstruct others in their religious worship”.
June 13, 1780 – Gen. Horatio Gates was elected by Congress decision to command the Southern Army.
June 23, 1780 – American forces combated the British in the Battle of Springfield that occurred in New Jersey.
July 11, 1780 – 6000 French ship with 600 soldiers on board under Count de Rochambeau arrived at Newport, Rhode Island. They stayed there during a year, restricted by the British fleet blockade.
August 3, 1780 – Benedict Arnold was assigned as commander of West Point. His personality was unknown to the Americans, while he collaborated secretly with British Gen. Clinton since May of 1779 and informed him about Gen. Washington’s tactics and plans.
August 16, 1780 – A huge fail occurred for the Americans in South Carolina as troops of Gen. Charles Cornwallis combated the forces of Gen. Gates, that caused 900 Americans being killed and 1000 captured.
August 18, 1780 – Americans were faced with a need to defeat at Fishing Creek, South Carolina, that allowed for Gen Cornwallis to intervene North Carolina.
September 23, 1780 – A British commander in civilian clothing was arrested near Tarrytown, New York. He has suspected of spying and collaboration with Benedict Arnold. The discovered information indicated about his intends to turn traitor and surrender to West Point. Two days after that, Arnold was informed of the spy’s arrest and escaped from West Point to the British ship Vulture on the Hudson. He was later appointed a brigadier general for the British Army and combated with the Americans.
October 7, 1780 – Gen. Cornwallis ceased his intervention in North Carolina after Americans maintained his military aids consisting of a Loyalist force of 1000 soldiers.
October 14, 1780 – Gen. Nathanael Greene, Washington’s most reliable and confident General, was elected as the new commander of the Southern Army to replace Gen. Gates. Greene then exercised a strategy of uniting popular support for overcoming the British by leading Gen. Cornwallis on the chase during six months passing the woods of South Carolina into North Carolina into Virginia then back into North Carolina. Because of decreasing supplement the British were enforced to swipe from any Americans they encountered, thus angering them.
January 3, 1781 – In New Jersey a mutiny among Americans occurred because troops from Pennsylvania settled camp near Princeton and elected their representatives to take part in negotiations with state officials in Pennsylvania. This confrontation was resolved through negotiations, but over half of the rebels left the army.
January 17, 1781 – Gen. Daniel Morgan broke down the army of British Gen. Tarleton that caused American victory at Cowpens, South Carolina.
January 20, 1781 – The riot in American troops took place at Pompton, New Jersey. The rebellion was sat down seven days after using the support of 600-men force directed by Gen. Washington. Two of the leaders of the riot were executed.
March 15, 1781 – Forces led by Gen. Cornwallis experienced heavy losses in the Battle of Guilford Courthouse in North Carolina. Therefore, Cornwallis changed the plans to combat the Carolinas and relocate to Wilmington, then commenced a campaign to occupy Virginia with an army consisting of 7500 men.
May 21, 1781 – Gen. Washington and French Gen. Rochambeau had a meeting in Connecticut regarding a war council. Gen. Rochambeau approved of Washington’s plan to unite the forces of French naval and American ground attack on New York.
June 4, 1781 – Thomas Jefferson ran away to not being arrested by the British at Charlottesville, Virginia.
June 10, 1781 – American regiments led by Marquis de Lafayette, Gen. Anthony Wayne and Baron combated Steuben and commenced to organize a combined force in Virginia to fight against British forces led by Benedict Arnold and Gen. Cornwallis.
June 11, 1781 – Congress assigned a Peace Commission and its members Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, John Jay and Henry Laurens. The commission elected John Adams as the sole mediator with the British.
July 20, 1781 – In Williamsburg, Virginia, the slaves organized a riot and fired on a few establishments.
August 1, 1781 – After several months of unsuccessful chase for Gen. Greene’s forces, Gen. Cornwallis and his 10,000 tired soldiers came to rest at the port of Yorktown, Virginia, located on the Chesapeake Bay. He then set up a base to connect throughout sea with Gen. Clinton’s forces in New York.
August 14, 1781 – Gen. Washington decided to change his plans and instead of the attack on New York go to Yorktown. This tactical decision was explained by a letter received from French Admiral Count de Grasse in which he informed his entire 29-ship French fleet with 3000 soldiers was now directed for the Chesapeake Bay near Cornwallis. Gen. Washington then agreed with Gen. Rochambeau to send their best troops in south direction to Virginia to devastate the British point in Yorktown.
August 30, 1781 – French fleet led by Count de Grasse sailed to Yorktown, Virginia. De Grasse then descended near Yorktown, connecting with Lafayette’s American troops to prevent Cornwallis from any possibilities of retreat by land.
September 1, 1781 – Washington`s and Rochambeau`s forces entered Philadelphia.
September 5-8, 1781 – The main naval battle between the French fleet of de Grasse and the outnumbered British fleet of Adams took place outside Yorktown. Thomas Graves won the battle for de Grasse. The British fleet went to New York for seeking reinforcements, thus the French fleet obtained the control of the Chesapeake. The French fleet sat up a blockade, avoiding any Cornwallis` retreat by the sea. French naval military aid came from Newport.
September 6, 1781 – Benedict Arnold’s army attacked the port of New London, Connecticut.
September 14-24, 1781 – De Grasse delegated his vessels in direction to the Chesapeake Bay to organize transportation of the armies of Washington and Rochambeau to Yorktown.
September 28, 1781 – Gen. Washington, in union with a combined Allied army of 17,000 men, decided to begin the siege of Yorktown. The cannons provided by French forces barraged Gen. Cornwallis and his 9000 men during day and night while the Allied lines slowly moved and made a circle around them. British aid was significantly late.
October 17, 1781 – Because of the expected capture of Yorktown, the British delegated a flag of the cease-fire. Gen. Washington and Gen. Cornwallis then concluded terms of surrender.
October 19, 1781 – The British army went ahead in the formation and surrendered at Yorktown while their band played the melody, “The world turned upside down”. The last possibilities for a British victory in the war against America disappeared. Thus, the ideas to end this costly and grueling war were announced in English Parliament.
October 24, 1781 – 7000 British soldiers under Gen. Clinton arrive at the Chesapeake Bay to provide military aids but returned after being informed about the surrender at Yorktown.
January 1, 1782 – Loyalists started to escape from America, beginning from north to Nova Scotia and New Brunswick.
January 5, 1782 – The British forces turned back from North Carolina.
February 27, 1782 – In England, the House of Commons approved the decision by voting against continuation of the war in America.
March 5, 1782 – The British Parliament authorized the King to negotiate regarding peaceful treaty with the United States.
March 7, 1782 – American militiamen killed 96 Delaware Indians in Ohio revenging for Indian raids exercised by other tribes.
March 20, 1782 – British Prime Minister, Lord North, decided to resign, succeeded after two days by Lord Rockingham who attempted to conduct immediate negotiations with the American peace commissioners.
April 4, 1782 – Sir Guy Carleton was appointed as the new commander of the British army in America in order to replace Gen. Clinton. Carleton began to enact the new British policy with the purpose to end confrontations and directed the British troops from America.
April 12, 1782 – Negotiations regarding the peace treaty were opened in Paris between Ben Franklin and Richard Oswald of Britain.
April 16, 1782 – Gen. Washington organized headquarters of the American army at Newburgh, New York.
April 19, 1782 – The Dutch made the statement of official recognition of the United States of America that was a result of negotiations organized in the Netherlands by John Adams.
June 11, 1782 – The British left the territory of Savannah, Georgia.
June 20, 1782 – Congress authorized the Great Seal of the United States of America.
August 19, 1782 – The union of loyalist and Indian forces combated and defeated American residents near Lexington, Kentucky.
August 25, 1782 – Mohawk Indian Chief Joseph Brant organized raids on American settlers in Pennsylvania and Kentucky.
August 27, 1782 – The last battle of the Revolutionary War between Americans and British took place in South Carolina near the Combahee River and resulted in huge warfare.
November 30, 1782 – A first peace treaty was concluded in Paris. Terms of document consisted of recognition of independence and the boundaries of the United States of America and British evacuation from America.
December 14, 1782 – The British left territory of Charleston, South Carolina.
December 15, 1782 – France stated significant objections regarding the concluding of the peace treaty in Paris without America that consulted them firstly. Ben Franklin then mitigated their discontent by a diplomatic response and avoided declining between France and America.
January 20, 1783 – England signed the first version of the peace treaty with France and Spain.
February 3, 1783 – Spain recognized the United States of America as an independent state, and Sweden, Denmark, and Russia made the same statement regarding official recognition.
February 4, 1783 – England officially made the statement regarding the end of confrontations in America.
March 10, 1783 – A letter unsigned by its author appeared among Washington’s senior officers located in Newburgh, New York. It appealed to organize the unauthorized meeting and addressed the officers with a call to resist the authority of the new national government (Congress) for its non-compliance of past promises to the Continental Army. The next day, Gen. Washington prohibited any non-scheduled meeting and instead offered to conduct a regular meeting to be organized on March 15. A second anonymous letter was presented. This letter affirmed deceitfully that Washington himself supported the ideas of rebellious officers.
March 15, 1783 – General Washington organized the meeting of his officers and raised the issue regarding protest against the authority of Congress, and tried to maintain the American democracy.
April 11, 1783 – Congress made the official statement regarding the end of the Revolutionary War.
April 26, 1783 – 7000 Loyalists boated from New York for Canada, completing a total number of 100,000 Loyalists who left America.
June 13, 1783 – The main part of the Continental Army demobilized.
June 24, 1783 – To prevent rebellion organized by war veterans because of delay of salaries, Congress leaves Philadelphia and relocates to Princeton, New Jersey.
July 8, 1783 – The Supreme Court of Massachusetts prohibited slavery in the state by its decision.
September 3, 1783 – The Treaty of Paris was signed by the United States and Great Britain. Congress would ratify the treaty on January 14, 1784.
October 7, 1783 – In Virginia, the House of Burgesses adopted the decision that granted the freedom to slaves who served as soldiers in the Continental Army.
November 2, 1783 – George Washington pronounced his farewell addressed to his army. The next day, the last troops were disbanded.
November 25, 1783 – Washington arrived in Manhattan when the last British troops escaped the city.
November 26, 1783 – Congress conducted the meeting in Annapolis, Maryland.
December 23, 1783 – After a victorious trip from New York to Annapolis, George Washington, outstanding commander in chief of the American Revolutionary Army, took part in Congress session and voluntarily decided to resign from his position that was a really unpredictable precedent in history.