The Revolutionary War and The War of 1812
The Revolutionary War and the War of 1812 were no easy feats for the United States. In both conflicts they faced an enemy that was far superior to them in almost every aspect. Victory was not straightforward, and at times did not seem attainable, but undeterred, Americans kept on fighting. Hardships were abundant after the Revolutionary War, yet through perseverance and democracy, those too would gradually be overcome. Americans declared war on England twice as the result of taxation without representation, and economic sanctions respectively; through alliances, citizen soldiers, and determination, the United States was able to claim victory in both struggles.
After the British victory of the Seven Years War, colonists throughout the east coast celebrated joyfully. As a result of the wars end, Americans expected lower taxes, acceptance and a broader role in British politics.[footnoteRef:1] They would however, have none of that. Instead they would be hit with numerous new taxes and remain unrepresented in London. [footnoteRef:2] The increase in taxes was a direct result of the war. England believed that Americans benefited directly far more than them from the British victory, so London saw it fitting to make the colonies pay off the majority of the war debts.[footnoteRef:3] In addition, England sought to protect its North American assets, and left thousands of ground troops and vessels in the colonies to supervise them, as well as to have a standing army ready in case of further conflicts in the region.[footnoteRef:4] [1: Davidson, James West, Brian DeLay, Christine Leigh Heyrman, Mark H. Lytle, and Michael B. Stoff. US: A Narrative History. 7th ed. N.p.: McGraw Hill, 2015. Print. 104] [2: Ibid., 105.] [3: Ibid., 105.] [4: Ibid., 104.]
Though many refused to accept it at the time, revolution and war became inevitable as a result of Britain’s excessive taxation of the colonies without their representation in Parliament. American colonists deeply believed that no one should be taxed without their consent, granted either directly or through a representative.[footnoteRef:5] Resentment for the British began with the Stamp act of 1765, the Townsend Act of 1767, and the Tea Act. The Stamp Act imposed a tax on all official documents such as deeds, and even newspapers and playing cards. The Townsend Act doubled the number of British troops in the colonies, and placed a tariff on certain imported goods. Lastly and most importantly, the Tea Act led to the Boston Tea Party, which in turn led to the Coercive Acts.[footnoteRef:6] [5: Ibid., 107.] [6: Hopkins, “Colonial Taxation,” October 8, 2015]
The Coercive, or Intolerable acts, as they were known in the colonies, was the British response to the Boston Tea Party. These acts relinquished control of the Massachusetts government to royal appointees, required the quartering of soldiers throughout the colonies, restricted all meetings in Massachusetts, and...