The British government took several steps to deal with the new territories and control the colonies. They made many restrictions on colonial trade, the powers of the colonial assemblies, on the access of the western lands, there was taxation for the first time, there was use of British troops even in peacetime, and modifications of the Massachusetts government in violation of its charter rights.

As a result of these restrictions, Americans were outraged. They felt that Britian was depriving them of their liberty. Americans decided to assert their power and defend their liberties. The attempts to protect their freedom brought the colonies into conflict with Parliament. But it did bring the colonies themselves closer together. This then lead to a widespread resistance, then to rebellion, and finally to revolution.

The revolutionary war started in 1775 and lasted until 1783. When the Revolutionary war first broke out the Americans were fighting the British alone. During this time the most important battles were in New England, New York, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania. It wasn’t until 1778 that France entered the war on the American side. After France entered the war, fighting was mainly taken place in the south, at sea, and on the western frontier. From 1781 to 1783, there was very little fighting and with Frances assistance Americans were sure of their victory. “The British surrender at Yorktown marked the end of major fighting in North America, though skirmishes continued for another year”.

The war for independence ended in 1783. Washington’s leadership was one of the reasons why America won the war. French assistance was also very important. If it wasn’t for the French, Americans probably wouldn’t have won the way they did. The British also contributed to their own downfall. “Their fatal mistakes included Bureaucratic inefficiency, hesitant command, and, worst of all, over-confidence”.

The peace negotiations were lengthy. Americans wanted independence, territory (including all of Canada), and the British controlled fishing grounds in the North Atlantic. The Peace of Paris gave America almost everything it wanted except Canada. Great Britian acknowledged that the United States was “free, Sovereign and independent”.

Even though the war brought on independence, it also brought on a lot of social and economic problems. Through out the eight years of warfare the soldiers weren’t the only one’s to suffer. The military broke families apart and everyone endured economic problems. Women’s burdens increased after the war, and their responsibilities were enlarged. Since all the men were at war, women assumed new public and household roles. Some women nursed the wounded soldiers and some wove cloth for their uniforms.

The revolutionary war also had a big impact on slavery. In the north, the war helped to bring an end to slavery, but in the south, slavery was found crucial to the economy and post-war recovery. Thus the war ultimately strengthened slavery in the south, especially in the Carolina’s and Georgia.

There was also economic disruption. The British and American armies both needed enormous quantities of supplies. This demand disrupted the distribution of goods and drove up prices. There was also a widespread use of depreciating paper money. This caused a rise in prices and severe inflation. The continental dollar lost its value so much it was considered worthless. Congress was forced to print paper money, but because so much was being printed, prices went up and the value of money went down. Prices also rised much faster than wages, which left many working people impoverished. As usual war and its deprivations brought out the best and worst of people. Some learned to cope and others couldn’t.

During the revolutionary war, the states started a period of constitutional writing. In 1781, they ratified the Articles of Confederation. This was a first attempt at a political union of the states. The years after this were a period of trial and error. The Articles of Confederation had many flaws. Under the Articles of Confederation, congress had the authority to negotiate foreign treaties but no economic or military power to enforce their terms, it was also unable to regulate commerce or set tariffs. The nation needed more central power. “By the end of the 1780’s, influential leaders favoring a strong national government, lost confidence in the Articles of Confederation and began working to replace them”.

Congress called for