Revolutionary War

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This page provides information about the Revolutionary War.

Starting and Beginning of the Revolutionary War


Words to know

  • Assembly - A lawmaking group of people gathered together for a meeting.

The American Colonists and the British Parliament disagreed over how the colonies should be governed or "controlled". The British Parliament believed they had the legal authority to govern the colonists. The colonists thought they should not be governed by the British because they had no representation in Parliament. The new laws created by the British Parliament aggravated the Colonists.


Virginians participated in events leading to war with Great Britain with the appointment of Thomas Jefferson to write the famous Declaration of Independence

The Declaration of Independence gave some simple ideas on which a government should be based. It also gave reasons why the American Colonists should become independent from the British. The Declaration of Independence stated that:

Authority to govern belonged to the people rather than to kings, that all people were created equal, and had rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

On July 4, 1776 - Delegates of the Second Continental Congress met in Philadelphia and adopted the Declaration of Independence.



James A. Lafayette - From New Kent County, was one of many enslaved Africans from Virginia who served the troops of the Continental Army. After the war, the General Assembly acknowledged his support and granted his freedom.

George Washington - Provided military leadership by serving in the Continental Army as the Commander-in-Chief. He also was a presidents inspire in as president.

Patrick Henry - Was the famous patriot who gave his "Give me liberty or give me death" speech in St. John's Church in Richmond, Virginia.

Thomas Jefferson - Was the writer of the "Declaration of Independence" and the 3rd President of the United States (1801-1809).

Jack Jouett - Was the famous captain of the Virginia Militia and best known from mounting his horse and riding to the General Assembly through the 40-mile forest through Charlottesville in 1781 because the British were going to the General Assembly to kill all who attended. Jouett's prize was silver-mounted pistols and a jewel sword.



Terms to Know

  • Minutemen - soldiers who pledged to be ready to fight at a minute's notice.
Battle of Lexington and Concord

The Battle of Lexington and Concord took place in April 1775 in Massachusetts and were the first battles of the American Revolution. The British were not able to catch the minutemen's supplies or Sam Adams/John Hancock, who were alerted of the arriving British by Paul Revere. This was the beginning of the conflict.

Battle of Great Bridge

The Battle of Great Bridge took place around seven miles south of Norfolk in December 1775. The road leading from North Carolina to Norfolk, Virginia. A village started here at this point known as the Great Bridge.

Although the battle was a brief battle lasting only 30 minutes, it brought destruction to Norfolk, Virginia. The Colonists victory was a major step in eliminating British lines and they let the British Governor flee from Norfolk.

Battle of Yorktown

The city of Yorktown was located on a peninsula and there is a river in Yorktown known simply as the Yorktown River.

The Battle took place in Yorktown in 1781, this battle was the last battle of the Revolutionary War. The French Navy accommodated with the Colonists and controlled the Chesapeake Bay. Blocking the ships of the British, General Cornwallis could not get ammo or food. Cornwallis relinquished to the Colonists. The Treaty of Paris was signed by the British, the newly formed United States, Spain and the Dutch.