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What were the significant advantages and disadvantages for the British
and the Americans during the Revolutionary War?
Directions:please read the following and write down 2 advantages and 2 disadvantages
for both the British and the Americas during the revolutionary war.
Trials of War 1776-1778
The Declaration of Independence [occurred at the same time as] a full-scale British military assault.
For two years, British forces manhandled the Continental Army. A few inspiring American victories
kept the rebellion alive, but during the winters of 1776 and 1777 the Patriot cause hung in the
War in the North
... Once the British resorted to military force, few [other European countries] gave the rebels a chance.
Great Britain had 11 million people compared to the colonies’ 2.5 million, 20 percent of whom were
enslaved Africans. Britain also [had] the [large] wealth generated by the Atlantic Trade System and
the emerging Industrial Revolution. [Britain’s money] paid for the most powerful navy in the world, a
standing army of 48,000 [British troops], and thousands of German (Hessian) soldiers. In addition,
Britain had and experienced [group of military leaders] and the support of thousands of American
Loyalists and many Indian tribes: The Cherokees of the Carolinas, were firmly committed to the
British, as were four of the six Iroquois Nations of New York.
By contrast, the Americans were economically and militarily weak. They [did not have] a strong
central government and a source of revenue [money], and their new Continental army, commanded
by George Washington, consisted of about 18,000 poorly trained recruits. The patriot militia would
not march to distant battles, and American officers had never faced a disciplined European army...
The war divided many communities. Patriots formed committees of safety to collect taxes and seized
property from those who refused to pay. In New England, mobs of Patriot farmers [attacked]
suspected [Loyalists]... Such defiance exposed the financial weakness of the Patriot governments... the
finances of the Continental Congress collapsed too... because Congress [did not have] the authority
[power] to impose taxes. [Because Congress did not have the power to collect taxes from the states,
Congress] relied on funds [the states were asked to pay]. [Most states] paid late or not at all...
Path to Victory
...The Patriot’s prospects improved dramatically in 1778, when the Continental Congress [made] a
military alliance with France, the most powerful nation in Europe. The alliance gave Americans
desperately needed money, supplies, and eventually troops...
...How could mighty Britain... lose to a motley rebel army?... [British government] blamed the military
leadership, pointing to a series of mistakes...Historians acknowledge British blunders but they also
attribute the rebels’ victory to French aid and the support of the American population. About onethird of the white colonists were zealous Patriots, and another third supported the rebellion by paying
taxes and joining the militia. Moreover, George Washington played a crucial role as an inspired
military leader and [skilled] politician... Confident of his military abilities, he maintained the support
of his officers and the morale of his men through five long years of war.