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American Revolution


The American Revolution was a political upheaval that took place between 1765 and 1783 during which colonists in the Thirteen American Colonies rejected the British monarchy and aristocracy, overthrew the authority of Great Britain, and founded the United States of America.

Starting in 1765, members of American colonial society rejected the authority of the British Parliament to tax them and to create other laws affecting them without colonial representatives in the government. During the following decade, protests continued to escalate by colonists (known as Patriots), as in the Boston Tea Party in 1773, during which patriots destroyed a consignment of taxed tea from the Parliament-controlled and favored East India Company. The British responded by imposing punitive laws on Massachusetts in 1774 known as the Coercive Acts, following which Patriots in the other colonies rallied behind Massachusetts. In late 1774, the Patriots set up their own alternative government to better coordinate their resistance efforts against Great Britain, while other colonists, known as Loyalists, preferred to remain aligned to the British Crown.

Tensions escalated to the outbreak of fighting between Patriot militia and British regulars at Lexington and Concord in April 1775. The conflict then developed into a global war, during which the Patriots (and later their French, Spanish, and Dutch allies) fought the British and Loyalists in what became known as the American Revolutionary War (1775–1783). Patriots in each of the thirteen colonies formed Provincial Congresses that assumed power from the old colonial governments and suppressed Loyalism, and from there built a Continental Army under the leadership of General George Washington. The Continental Congress determined King George III's rule to be tyrannical and infringing the colonists' "rights as Englishmen", and declared the colonies free and independent states in July 1776. The Patriot leadership professed the political philosophies of liberalism and republicanism to reject monarchy and , and proclaimed that all men are created equal. Congress rejected British proposals requiring allegiance to the monarchy and abandonment of independence.



It may be said as truly that the American Revolution was an aftermath of the Anglo-French conflict in the New World carried on between 1754 and 1763.
The Revolution did revolutionize social relations. It did displace the deference, the patronage, the social divisions that had determined the way people viewed one another for centuries and still view one another in much of the world. It did give to ordinary people a pride and power, not to say an arrogance, that have continued to shock visitors from less favored lands. It may have left standing a host of inequalities that have troubled us ever since. But it generated the egalitarian view of human society that makes them troubling and makes our world so different from the own in which the revolutionists had grown up.
Further information : Bibliography of the American Revolutionary War  and  Bibliography of George Washington
  • Property qualifications for voting and even more substantial requirements for elected positions (though New York and Maryland lowered property qualifications)
  • Bicameral legislatures, with the upper house as a check on the lower
  • Strong governors with veto power over the legislature and substantial appointment authority
  • Few or no restraints on individuals holding multiple positions in government
  • The continuation of state-established religion
  • universal manhood suffrage, or minimal property requirements for voting or holding office (New Jersey enfranchised some property-owning widows, a step that it retracted 25 years later)
  • strong, unicameral legislatures
  • relatively weak governors without veto powers, and with little appointing authority
  • prohibition against individuals holding multiple government posts
  • Barnes, Ian, and Charles Royster. The Historical Atlas of the American Revolution (2000), maps and commentary excerpt and text search
  • Blanco, Richard L.; Sanborn, Paul J. (1993). The American Revolution, 1775–1783: An Encyclopedia. New York: Garland Publishing Inc. ISBN . 
  • Boatner, Mark Mayo III (1974). Encyclopedia of the American Revolution (2 ed.). New York: Charles Scribners and Sons. ISBN . 
  • Cappon, Lester J. Atlas of Early American History: The Revolutionary Era, 1760–1790 (1976)
  • Fremont-Barnes, Gregory, and Richard A. Ryerson, eds. The Encyclopedia of the American Revolutionary War: A Political, Social, and Military History (5 vol. 2006) 1000 entries by 150 experts, covering all topics
  • Gray, Edward G., and Jane Kamensky, eds. The Oxford Handbook of the American Revolution (2013) 672 pp; 33 essays by scholars
  • Greene, Jack P. and J. R. Pole, eds. A Companion to the American Revolution (2004), 777pp an expanded edition of Greene and Pole, eds. The Blackwell Encyclopedia of the American Revolution (1994); comprehensive coverage of political and social themes and international dimension; thin on military
  • Kennedy, Frances H. The American Revolution: A Historical Guidebook (2014) A guide to 150 famous historical sites.
  • Purcell, L. Edward. Who Was Who in the American Revolution (1993); 1500 short biographies
  • Resch, John P., ed. Americans at War: Society, Culture and the Homefront vol 1 (2005), articles by scholars
  • Symonds, Craig L. and William J. Clipson. A Battlefield Atlas of the American Revolution (1986) new diagrams of each battle
  • Allison, Robert. The American Revolution: A Concise History (2011) 128pp excerpt and text search
  • Axelrod, Alan. The Real History of the American Revolution: A New Look at the Past (2009), well-illustrated popular history
  • Bancroft, George. History of the United States of America, from the discovery of the American continent. (1854–78), vol 4–10 online edition, classic 19th century narrative; highly detailed
  • Black, Jeremy. War for America: The Fight for Independence 1775–1783 (2001) 266pp; by leading British scholar
  • Brown, Richard D., and Thomas Paterson, eds. Major Problems in the Era of the American Revolution, 1760–1791: Documents and Essays (2nd ed. 1999)
  • Christie, Ian R. and Benjamin W. Labaree. Empire or Independence: 1760-1776 (1976)
  • Cogliano, Francis D. Revolutionary America, 1763–1815; A Political History (2nd ed. 2008), British textbook
  • Ellis, Joseph J. American Creation: Triumphs and Tragedies in the Founding of the Republic (2008) excerpt and text search
  • Higginbotham, Don. The War of American Independence: Military Attitudes, Policies, and Practice, 1763–1789 (1983) ; comprehensive coverage of military and domestic aspects of the war.
  • Jensen, Merrill. The Founding of a Nation: A History of the American Revolution 1763–1776. (2004)
  • Knollenberg, Bernhard. Growth of the American Revolution: 1766–1775 (2003)
  • Lecky, William Edward Hartpole. The American Revolution, 1763–1783 (1898), older British perspective online edition
  • Mackesy, Piers. The War for America: 1775–1783 (1992), British military study online edition
  • Middlekauff, Robert. The Glorious Cause: The American Revolution, 1763–1789 (Oxford History of the United States, 2005). online edition
  • Miller, John C. Triumph of Freedom, 1775–1783 (1948) online edition
  • Miller, John C. Origins of the American Revolution (1943) online edition, to 1775
  • Rakove, Jack N. Revolutionaries: A New History of the Invention of America (2010) interpretation by leading scholar excerpt and text search
  • Taylor, Alan. American Revolutions: A Continental History, 1750-1804 (2016) 704pp; recent survey by leading scholar
  • Weintraub, Stanley. Iron Tears: Rebellion in America 1775–83 (2005) excerpt and text search, popular
  • Wood, Gordon S. Revolutionary Characters: What Made the Founders Different (2007)
  • Wrong, George M. Washington and His Comrades in Arms: A Chronicle of the War of Independence (1921) online short survey by Canadian scholar online
  • Bailyn, Bernard. The Ideological Origins of the American Revolution. (Harvard University Press, 1967).
  • Bangs, Jeremy D. "The Travels of Elkanah Watson". (McFarland & Company, 2015).
  • Becker, Carl. The Declaration of Independence: A Study on the History of Political Ideas (1922)online edition, famous classic
  • Becker, Frank: The American Revolution as a European Media Event, European History Online, Mainz: Institute of European History, 2011, retrieved: October 25, 2011.
  • Berkin, Carol.Revolutionary Mothers: Women in the Struggle for America's Independence (2006)
  • Bonomi, Patricia U., Under the Cope of Heaven: Religion, Society, and Politics in Colonial America (2003)
  • Breen, T. H. The Marketplace of Revolution: How Consumer Politics Shaped American Independence (2005)
  • Breen, T. H. American Insurgents, American Patriots: The Revolution of the People (2010) 337 pages; examines rebellions in 1774–76 including loosely organized militants took control before elected safety committees emerged.
  • Brunsman, Denver, and David J Silverman, eds. The American Revolution Reader (Routledge Readers in History, 2013) 472pp; essays by leading scholars
  • Chernow, Ron. Washington: A Life (2010) detailed biography; Pulitzer Prize
  • Crow, Jeffrey J. and Larry E. Tise, eds. The Southern Experience in the American Revolution (1978)
  • Fischer, David Hackett. Paul Revere's Ride (1995), Minutemen in 1775
  • Fischer, David Hackett. Washington's Crossing (2004). 1776 campaigns; Pulitzer prize.
  • Freeman, Douglas Southall. Washington (1968) Pulitzer Prize; abridged version of 7 vol biography
  • Horne, Gerald. The Counter-Revolution of 1776: Slave Resistance and the Origins of the United States of America. (New York University Press, 2014).
  • Kerber, Linda K. Women of the Republic: Intellect and Ideology in Revolutionary America (1979)
  • Kidd, Thomas S. God of Liberty: A Religious History of the American Revolution (2010)
  • McCullough, David. 1776 (2005). ; popular narrative of the year 1776
  • Maier, Pauline. American Scripture: Making the Declaration of Independence (1998) excerpt and text search
  • Nash, Gary B. The Unknown American Revolution: The Unruly Birth of Democracy and the Struggle to Create America. (2005).
  • Nevins, Allan; The American States during and after the Revolution, 1775–1789 1927. online edition
  • Norton, Mary Beth. Liberty's Daughters: The Revolutionary Experience of American Women, 1750–1800 (1980)
  • O'Shaughnessy Andrew Jackson. The Men Who Lost America: British Leadership, the American Revolution, and the Fate of the Empire (Yale University Press; 2013) 466 pages; on top British leaders
  • Palmer, Robert R. The Age of the Democratic Revolution: A Political History of Europe and America, 1760–1800. vol 1 (1959) online edition
  • Resch, John Phillips and Walter Sargent, eds. War and Society in the American Revolution: Mobilization and Home Fronts (2006)
  • Rothbard, Murray, Conceived in Liberty (2000), Volume III: Advance to Revolution, 1760–1775 and Volume IV: The Revolutionary War, 1775–1784. , libertarian perspective
  • Van Tyne, Claude Halstead. American Loyalists: The Loyalists in the American Revolution (1902) online edition
  • Volo, James M. and Dorothy Denneen Volo. Daily Life during the American Revolution (2003)
  • Wahlke, John C. ed. The Causes of the American Revolution (1967) readings
  • Wood, Gordon S. American Revolution (2005) [excerpt and text search] 208pp excerpt and text search
  • Wood, Gordon S. The Radicalism of the American Revolution: How a Revolution Transformed a Monarchical Society into a Democratic One Unlike Any That Had Ever Existed. (1992), by a leading scholar
  • Breen, Timothy H. "Ideology and nationalism on the eve of the American Revolution: Revisions once more in need of revising." Journal of American History (1997): 13-39. in JSTOR
  • Schocket, Andrew M. Fighting over the Founders: How We Remember the American Revolution (2014), how politicians, screenwriters, activists, biographers, museum professionals, and reenactors portray the American Revolution. excerpt
  • Sehat, David. The Jefferson Rule: How the Founding Fathers Became Infallible and Our Politics Inflexibl (2015) excerpt
  • Shalhope, Robert E. "Toward a republican synthesis: the emergence of an understanding of republicanism in American historiography." William and Mary Quarterly (1972): 49-80. in JSTOR
  • Waldstreicher, David. "The Revolutions of Revolution Historiography: Cold War Contradance, Neo-Imperial Waltz, or Jazz Standard?." Reviews in American History 42.1 (2014): 23-35. online
  • Wood, Gordon S. "Rhetoric and Reality in the American Revolution." William and Mary Quarterly (1966): 4-32. in JSTOR
  • The American Revolution: Writings from the War of Independence (2001), Library of America, 880pp
  • Commager, Henry Steele and Morris, Richard B., eds. The Spirit of 'Seventy-Six: The Story of the American Revolution As Told by Participants (1975) () short excerpts from hundreds of official and unofficial primary sources
  • Dann, John C., ed. The Revolution Remembered: Eyewitness Accounts of the War for Independence (1999) excerpt and text search, recollections by ordinary soldiers
  • Humphrey, Carol Sue ed. The Revolutionary Era: Primary Documents on Events from 1776 to 1800 (2003), 384pp; newspaper accounts excerpt and text search
  • Jensen, Merill, ed. Tracts of the American Revolution, 1763–1776 (1967). American pamphlets
  • Jensen, Merill, ed. English Historical Documents: American Colonial Documents to 1776: Volume 9 (1955), 890pp; major collection of important documents
  • Morison, Samuel E. ed. Sources and Documents Illustrating the American Revolution, 1764–1788, and the Formation of the Federal Constitution (1923). 370 pp online version
  • Tansill, Charles C. ed.; Documents Illustrative of the Formation of the Union of the American States. Government Printing Office. (1927). 1124 pages online version
  • Martin Kallich and Andrew MacLeish, eds. The American Revolution through British eyes (1962) primary documents
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