1700-1787

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Queen Anne's War

The war of 1702 to 1713, which was the second of the wars for empire and which ended with major gains for the English in the Peace of Utrecht.

Peace of Utrecht

Treaty ending Queen Anne's War in 1713 which awarded England Newfoundland, Nova Scotia (Acadia), the Hudson Bay territory, and St. Kitts and Nevis in the Caribbean from France; Gibraltar and Minorca from Spain; and the right to supply Spanish colonies with African slaves.

Enlightenment

Intellectual movement in Europe that stressed the acquisition of knowledge by humankind as a means of assuring progress and perfecting society-a view embraced by many in America's colonial elite

Great Awakening

Religious revivals that swept the colonies between 1720 and 1760 which stressed individual salvation and injected emotionalism into religion.

Zenger Trial

New York court case in 1735 in which a printer, John Peter Zernger, accused of seditious libel was acquitted, thus reinforcing the notion that government was the people's servant and that public criticism could keep the government responsible to the people.

King George's War

Also known as the War of the Austrian Succession; war began in Europe and spilled into North America when, provoked by French attacks on Nova Scotia, Governor William Shirley of Massachusetts successfully led an assault on Louisbourg, which controlled access to the St. Lawrence River; colonists realized their interests had little sway in imperial politics: Louisbourg returned by British to the French; no change in power balance in North America between Great Britain and France

The French Indian War

This war also known as The Seven Years' War, started when the French began fortifying the Ohio Valley region to deter the British from settling further west. In 1754, Lt. Colonel George Washington's men were sent to prevent the French from putting finishing touches on Fort Duquesne. Washington's forces proved weak, and finally surrendered. The British were more successful when they turned to conquering Canada. The French surrendered Quebec and Montreal, resulting in the Peace of Paris. The British took control of Canada and Florida, effectively removing the French presence in North America.

Albany Plan of Union

This plan, constructed by the Albany Congress, called for a confederation of colonies to provide for defense from attack by European and native foes during the French and Indian War. Unfortunately, the colonies rejected the plan because they felt it was too restrictive; the British felt it allowed for too much colonial independence.

Writs of Assistance

These documents, related to the Townsend Acts, allowed customs officials to search colonial homes, businesses, and warehoused for smuggled goods without a warrant from a judge.

Peace of Paris

This treaty, which ended the French and Indian War in 1763, allowed the British to take control of French Canada, and Spanish Florida, effectively removing the French presence in North America.

Proclamation of 1763

This document, signed by King George III in 1763, set a line of demarcation that barred American colonists from settling west of the Appalachian Mountains. The British saw this as a quick and easy way to make peace with the Native American tribes of the region. British colonists on the other hand were incensed by that apparent permanent interference of the crown in their ability to rightfully take land they had won in battle. Most colonists simply ignored the line and settled west in larger numbers than before the French and Indian War.

Pontiac's rebellion

This event occurred in 1763 when the Ottawans, led by Chief Pontiac, launched an attack on the new colonial settlements from the Great Lakes region, of what is now Michigan, all the way to Virginia. The damage to the British forts and colonial settlements was significant, with many lives lost and homes destroyed. British regular forces were sent to protect the colonies, and the situation ended after 18 months of fighting.

The Sugar Acts

These acts of 1764 raised the previous amount demanded on sweeteners(molasses and sugar) from the Older Molasses Act of 1733. Britain wanted to collect the tax revenue they had been losing to the Triangular Trade by taxing molasses from the West Indies and abroad, but mainly the tax was levied to make money for the crown.

Currency Acts

Parliamentary measure passed in 1764 which prohibited colonies from issuing paper colonies. Because colonists were chronically short of cash, this law inhibited their ability to trade.

The Stamp Act

This act of 1765 was an attempt by Britain to collect revenue for a new colonial army. The act required that all paper (including death and marriage certificates and newspapers) was to have a stamp affixed, signifying tax had been paid. This was the first time the colonists had been subjected to a direct tax-paid directly by the consumer of the paper good produced in the colony-as opposed to paying an indirect tax on an imported good, British Prime Minister George Greenville felt this was fair, as the colonists were paying their fair share of the burden of war

Stamp Act Congress

This body, with representatives from 9 of the 13 colonies, sent word to England in 1765 that only colonial legislatures had an authority to tax the colonists. The colonists agreed that external taxes-levies imposed throughout the empire on traded goods-were within the rights of the Crown to impose.

Quartering Act

This act of 1765 required colonial citizens to provide room and board fro British soldiers stationed in the colonies. This act was tame in the eyes of the colonists-it was laxly enforced and rarely affected their everyday lives.

Townsend Acts

These acts, passed in 1767, brought harsh taxes on goods such as glass, paper, and tea. In addition, a board of customs officials was appointed to enforce writs of assistance that allowed a search of colonial homes, businesses, and warehouses for smuggled goods without a warrant. While the colonists felt that any increase in taxes signaled an abuse of Parliament, they were slow to react to these duties as they were external, rather than internal, taxes. Eventually, boycotts of British goods began. Wishing to avoid economic troubles. British Prime Minister Lord North repealed these acts in 1770.

Massachusetts Circular Letter

this letter, written by Samuel Adams in 1768, explained that there was no distinction between external and internal taxes, and that the Townsend Acts must be immediately repealed. The letter was copied and distributed throughout the colonies, sparking rejuvenation of boycotts of British goods.

Boston Massacre

This event took place in March 1770. The residents of Boston were particularly angered about the enforcement of the Quartering Act. Many British regulars had been stationed in the city to protect the port and collect customs duties from imported British goods. A crowd of disgruntled Bostonian's began to harass the troops guarding the customs house by throwing rocks and frozen oysters. The guards fired upon the crowd, killing five and wounding six protesters.

Committees of Correspondence

Communications network set up in 1772 to state the rights of colonists, and to keep the colonists informed of British activities.

The Tea Act

This act, passed in 1773, actually lowered the price of tea. However, colonists were wary at any attempt y Britain to collect revenue and refused to purchase the tea.

Boston Tea Party

This event occurred in 1773 in response to the Tea Act. As a new tea shipment sat in Boston Harbour, a group of colonists dressed as Native Americans boarded the ship, broke open the crates, and dumped the tea into the water. Colonists disputed whether the this should be applauded as a protest against oppression or if it was simply a destruction of property. Lord North was not pleased. He persuaded Parliament to pass the Coercive Acts, which would close Boston Harbour until the tea was paid for, and revoke the charter of the colony of Massachusetts.

The Intolerable Acts

These acts, also known as the Quebec Act of 1774, basically allowed the former French region to be self-sufficient and expanded it's borders, taking away potential lands from colonists in the Ohio River Valley. This name was given to the acts by enraged colonists who were angered more by the provision to allow Quebecois to freely pratcice Catholicism than by the other acts of this era.

Declaration of Rights and Grievances

This document, sent to King George II by the First Continental Congress in 1774, urged him to correct the wrongs incurred by the colonist but did not acknowledge the authority of Parliament to regulate trade and commerce.

Coercive Acts

These acts, passed i 1773, closed Boston Harbour until the tea ruined during the Boston Tea Party was paid for, and it also revoked the charter of the colony of Massachusetts. This put the colony under control of the Crown and expanded the scope of the Quartering Act, which allowed soldiers to be boarded in private homes.

Quebec Act

This act, also known as the Intolerable Acts of 1774 basically allowed the former French region to be self sufficient and expanded it's borders, taking away potentiakl lands from colonists in the Ohio River Valley.

Sons and daughters of liberty

This group, led by Samuel Adams, intimidated tax collectors by attacking their homes, burning them in effigy, and even tarring and feathering them. they even ransacked warehouses that held stamps and burned them to the ground.

Loyalists

This is the name given to the colonists who sided with the British. They are also known as the Tories.

First Continental Congress

This meeting of representatives from 12 colonies took place in Philadelphia in 1774. The group met to discuss possible reactions to the Intolerable Acts. First they urged colonies to build military reserves and organize boycotts of British goods. Second, The Declaration of Rights and Grievances was sent to urge the king to correct the wrongs incurred by the colonists; it also acknowledges Parliaments authority to regulate trade and commerce. Finally, they created the Association which called for the creation of "boycott committees" throughout the colonies.

Battles of Lexington and Conchord

in 1775 there was a rumor that there were weapons hidden outside of Boston so General Gage lead the Redcoats to check it out. Paul Revere warned the colonists that the Redcoats were coming. When the Redcoats arrived they did not find any weapons but on there way back to Boston they fought with the colonists.

The Second Continental Congress

1775, Georgia was not represented, decided not to make an army and make Washington as leader, they signed the Olive Branch Petition

Declaration of Causes and Necessities of Taking Arms

This document, drawn up by the Second Continental Congress 1775, urged King George III second time to consider colonial grievances and provided for the raising of a professional colonial military force.

Olive Branch Petition

This document, sent by the Second Continental Congress to Britain in July 1775, was a last gesture of peace and a preventive measure against total war. This document reasserted colonial loyalty to the Crown and asked King George II to intervene with Parliament on their behalf. The king, however, refused once again to recognize the legitimacy Congress.

Declaration of Independence

This document, which would reiterate the resolution of June 7th, 1776, to declare the colonies independent, was drafted by Thomas Jefferson and four other delegates. The document in it's original form was a labour of love for Jefferson. It contained a preamble that heavily reflected the philosophy of John Locke regarding natural rights. Jefferson listed 27 grievances and charges of wrongdoing directed at the Crown and Parliament. This document was the official break of the colonies from England, thus making the United States a country in it's own right.

Common Sense

This pamphlet, published by Thomas Paine in January 1776, used John Locke's natural rights philosophy to justify that the citizens of the colonies were obligated to rebel against oppression of Britain and that it would be contrary to common sense to allow the injustices to continue. Members of the Second Continental Congress read this pamphlet with great interest, thereby integrating Paine's arguments into their deliberations in Philadelphia.

Battle of Saratoga

This battle, which took place in October 1777 and was fought by Generals Benedict Arnold and Horatio Gates, was the most important battle of the American Revolution. American forces were able to cut off the British charge on New England and secure the surrender of British General Burgoyne's army, thus convincing the French of America's military viability. The French had been waiting for evidence of an American success so they could justify entering the war on behalf of the revolutionaries.

Articles of Confederation

This document, slightly altered from John Dickinson's draft national constitution, was created by the Second Continental Congress and sent to the states in 1777. After a dispute between coastal and inland states over the administration of westward lands, it was ratified in 1781 and provided a necessary template for government. It provided for a central government with a unicameral legislative branch which could wage war, make treaties, and borrow money to pay debts. It also established policies regarding the settlement and statehood of newly acquired westward lands.

Treaty of Paris

This treaty, signed in 1783, was a peace settlement that ended the American Revolution. The treaty included a formal recognition of the United States as a country, a boundary that stretched west to the Mississippi River, and the retention of the American fishing rights in Newfoundland. For their part Americans agreed to repay debts to the British merchants and promised not to punish the loyalists who chose to remain in the United states.

The Land Ordinance of 1785

This ordinance required new townships to set aside a parcel of land for public education and stipulated that the sale of public lands would be used to pay off the national debt. The settlement of the Old Northwest would thus be orderly in contrast to the relatively unorganized settlement in the South.

Shay's Rebellion

This uprising, fought by Daniel Shays and a band of Massachusetts farmers, took place during the summer of 1786. The rebels demanded restitution and tax relief. The uprising escalated in January 1787 when the mob undertook a seizure of the state arsenal. At this stage, the Massachusetts militia marched in and quelled the uprising.

Constitutional Convention

This meeting, which took place in Philadelphia in 1787, was meant to revise and repair and the existing Articles of Confederation, but in fact resulted in the creation of a new government and the United States constitution.

Northwest Ordinance

This ordinance in 1787 established guidelines for attaining statehood, whereby territories with at least 60,000 people could apply for statehood; if accepted by congress, the new state would have equal status with other states. Moreover, this ordinance banned slavery north of the Ohio River, thereby guaranteeing future free states in the Midwest.

The Great Compromise

This proposal by Roger Sherman stated: "the proportion of suffrage in the first branch should be according to the respective numbers of free inhabitants and that in the second branch or Senate, each State should have one vote and no more." Also known as the Connecticut Compromise, this meant large states were appeased by the House of Representatives, compromised of members that reflected the population of individual states. Small states would be appeased by the Senate, comprised of membership that was equal regardless of state population.

Three-Fifths Compromise

This arrangement started with a conflict regarding geographic proportions. Southern delegates lived in large states with equally large populations of slaves who were not considered citizens. Southerners argues that although slaves could not vote, they still had to be managed by the state and should count as part of the population. Northerners, some of whom disliked the practice of slavery, agreed to this compromise in exchanged for the passage of the Northwest Ordinance of 1787. The result-southern slaves would be counted as a fraction of a citizen.

House of Representatives

This branch of government is comprised of members that reflect the population of individual states.

Virginia Plan

This plan, presented on May 29, 1787, by Edmund Randolph and delegates from larger states, called for representation in both houses to be based solely on population or proportional representation.

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