Congress votes for independence - HISTORY
The Second Continental Congress was a convention of delegates from the Thirteen Colonies that started meeting in the spring of in Philadelphia, . On May 10, , Congress passed a resolution recommending that any colony with a. "Common Sense." Thomas Paine moved many to the cause of A committee was appointed to draft a declaration of independence, and Thomas. On this day in , the Second Continental Congress, assembled in Philadelphia, The vote is unanimous, with only New York abstaining. . V. M. Molotov walks out of a meeting with representatives of the British and French governments.
On October 21, the delegates approved separate statements for the people of Great Britain and the North American colonies, explaining the colonial position, and on October 26 a similar address was approved for the people of Quebec. They did not draft such a letter to the British Parliament as the colonists viewed the Parliament as the aggressor behind the recent Intolerable Acts.
Lastly, not fully expecting the standoff in Massachusetts to explode into full-scale war, the Congress agreed to reconvene in Philadelphia on May 10, By the time Congress met again, war was already underway, and thus the delegates to the Second Continental Congress formed the Continental Army and dispatched George Washington to Massachusetts as its commander.
Meanwhile, Congress drafted the Olive Branch Petition, which attempted to suggest means of resolving disputes between the colonies and Great Britain. As British authority crumbled in the colonies, the Continental Congress effectively took over as the de facto national government, thereby exceeding the initial authority granted to it by the individual colonial governments.
However, the local groups that had formed to enforce the colonial boycott continued to support the Congress. The Second Congress continued to meet until March 1,when the Articles of Confederation that established a new national government for the United States took effect.
As the de facto national government, the Continental Congress assumed the role of negotiating diplomatic agreements with foreign nations. The British Parliament banned trade with the colonies and authorized the seizure of colonial vessels on December These actions served to further erode the positions of anti-independence moderates in Congress and bolster those of pro-independence leaders. The victories gave an important boost to Patriots at a time when morale was flagging, and have become iconic images of the war.
The plan called for two British armies to converge on Albany, New York from the north and south, dividing the colonies in two and separating New England from the rest.The 8 U.S. Presidents Before George Washington
Failed communications and poor planning resulted in the army descending from Canada, commanded by General John Burgoynebogging down in dense forest north of Albany.
Meanwhile, the British Army that was supposed to advance up the Hudson River to meet Burgoyne went instead to Philadelphia, in a vain attempt to end the war by capturing the American capital city. Burgoyne's army was overwhelmed at Saratoga by a swarming of local militia, spearheaded by a cadre of American regulars.
Said one British officer: The courage and obstinacy with which the Americans fought were the astonishment of everyone, and we now became fully convinced that they are not that contemptible enemy we had hitherto imagined them, incapable of standing a regular engagement, and that they would only fight behind strong and powerful works. France was soon joined by Spain and the Netherlands, both major naval powers with an interest in undermining British strength.
Britain now faced a major European war, and the involvement of the French navy neutralized their previous dominance of the war on the sea. Britain was without allies and faced the prospect of invasion across the English Channel. Southern theater of the American Revolutionary War and Naval operations in the American Revolutionary War With the British in control of most northern coastal cities and Patriot forces in control of the hinterlands, the British attempted to force a result by a campaign to seize the southern states.
Continental Congress - HISTORY
With limited regular troops at their disposal, the British commanders realized that success depended on a large-scale mobilization of Loyalists. In they launched a fresh invasion and took Charleston as well. A significant victory at the Battle of Camden meant that the invaders soon controlled most of Georgia and South Carolina. The British set up a network of forts inland, hoping the Loyalists would rally to the flag.
Not enough Loyalists turned out, however, and the British had to move out. They fought their way north into North Carolina and Virginiawith a severely weakened army.
Behind them, much of the territory they left dissolved into a chaotic guerrilla waras the bands of Loyalists, one by one, were overwhelmed by the patriots. The siege of Yorktown ended with the surrender of a British army, ending most of the fighting The British army under Lord Cornwallis marched to Yorktown, Virginia where they expected to be rescued by a British fleet.
When that fleet was defeated by a French fleethowever, they were trapped, and were surrounded by a much stronger force of Americans and French under Washington's command. On October 19,Cornwallis surrendered. On May 15, they adopted a more radical preamble to this resolution, drafted by John Adamswhich advised throwing off oaths of allegiance and suppressing the authority of the Crown in any colonial government that still derived its authority from the Crown.
That same day, the Virginia Convention instructed its delegation in Philadelphia to propose a resolution that called for a declaration of independence, the formation of foreign alliances, and a confederation of the states. The resolution of independence was delayed for several weeks, as advocates of independence consolidated support in their home governments. He also urged Congress to resolve "to take the most effectual measures for forming foreign Alliances" and to prepare a plan of confederation for the newly independent states.
American leaders had rejected the divine right of kings in the New Worldbut recognized the necessity of proving their credibility in the Old World. The Declaration announced the states' entry into the international system; the model treaty was designed to establish amity and commerce with other states; and the Articles of Confederation established "a firm league" among the thirteen free and independent states.
These three things together constituted an international agreement to set up central institutions for conducting vital domestic and foreign affairs.
They next turned their attention to a formal explanation of this decision, the United States Declaration of Independence which was approved on July 4 and published soon thereafter.