The history of the United States is substantial as well as intricate, yet can be broken down into moments and time periods that separated, linked, and also changed the United States into the nation it is now. The American flag did not look like it does currently. Other than that, it undertook a lot of changes and adjustments.
The American Revolutionary War
Enter the American Revolution. Sometimes referred to as the American War of Independence, or the Revolutionary War, it was a conflict which lasted from 1775-1783 as well as enabled the initial 13 colonies to remain independent from Great Britain. Starting in Great Britain in the late 1790s, the Industrial Revolution eventually made its path to the United States and altered the emphasis of the country’s economic climate and the means it makes items.
These tensions occurred from expanding tensions between residents of Great Britain’s 13 North American colonies as well as the early american government (which represented the British crown). Attempts by the British government to raise income by collectin tax from the colonies (especially the Stamp Act of 1765, the Townshend Tariffs of 1767 and also the Tea Act of 1773) met with violent protest among lots of colonists, who disliked their absence of depiction in Parliament and also required the same rights as other British subjects.
The Continental Congress convened in May 1775 and consented to build an army. George Washington was made its commander in chief. Congress hoped they might require the British to discuss yet George III chose not to compromise. Rather, in August 1775 he stated that the American colonies were in a state of rebellion. Rule by royal governor broke down and the individuals required government without royal interference. In May 1776 Congress decided that imperial government ought to discontinue as well as government should be ‘for individuals’. Consequently the colonies formulated state constitutions to replace their charters.
By June 1776, with the Revolutionary War in progress, an expanding majority of the colonists had pertained to favor freedom from Britain. That very same year Richard Henry Lee of the Virginia Assembly offered Congress with resolutions proclaiming the freedom of the colonies, requiring a confederation and also revealed the have to locate foreign allies for a battle versus Britain. On July 4th, the Continental Congress voted to adopt the Declaration of Independence, prepared by a five-man committee consisting of Franklin and also John Adams however written mainly by Jefferson. By the autumn of 1781, the American army had begun to force the adversary to withdraw to Virginia’s Yorktown peninsula, near where the York River clears into Chesapeake Bay. Supported by a French army led by General Jean Baptiste de Rochambeau, Washington moved against Yorktown with a total amount of around 14,000 soldiers, while a fleet of 36 French battleships offshore prevented British support or escape. Entrapped as well as subdued, the opponent was required to surrender their whole military. Stating ailments, the British general sent his replacement, Charles O’Hara, to surrender; after O’Hara approached Rochambeau to surrender his sword (the Frenchman deferred to Washington), Washington gave the nod to his own replacement, Benjamin Lincoln, who accepted it. After French help helped the Continental Army force the British abandonment at Yorktown, Virginia, in 1781, the Americans had actually successfully won their freedom, though combatting would not officially finish til 1783.
The motion for American freedom successfully won at Yorktown, contemporary historians did not see that as the crucial triumph. British as well as American arbitrators in Paris signed initial peace terms in Paris late that November, as well as on September 3, 1783, Great Britain officially recognized the freedom of the United States in the Treaty of Paris.
How the American Flag happened
The American flag was designed to represent the brand-new union of the thirteen original states: it would have thirteen stripes, alternating red and white, as well as thirteen stars, white on a blue field. Among the first flags had the stars organized in a circle, based upon the idea that colonies were equal. The thirteen stripes, laid out side by side, represented the battle for independence; red represented valor, white signified purity as well as blue stood for commitment.
In 1818, after a couple of layout adjustments, the United States Congress made a decision to preserve the flag’s initial thirteen stripes and add new stars to show each brand-new state that joined the union.
While there is no question that the real Betsy Ross deserved interest in her very own right, it is the tale of Betsy stitching the first stars and stripes that has actually made her an extraordinary historical number. The Betsy Ross story was given public attention in 1870 by her grandson, William Canby, in a speech he made to the Historical Society of Pennsylvania. Canby and also other members of Betsy’s household authorized vouched affidavits stating that they listened to the tale of the production of the first flag from Betsy’s own mouth.
According to the oral background, in 1776, 3 men – George Washington, Robert Morris, and George Ross, checked out Betsy Ross in her furniture store. On a piece of paper Washington revealed, was a drawing of a flag with thirteen red and also white stripes as well as thirteen 6-pointed stars.
Washington asked if Betsy can make a flag from the style. Betsy responded: “I don’t know, but I will certainly try.” This line was made use of in the vouched declarations of much of Betsy’s family members, suggesting that it is a direct quote from Betsy. As the tale goes, Betsy recommended changing the stars to 5 points rather than 6. She showed them how to do it with simply one snip of her scissors. They all accepted to change the style to have stars with five points.
However, some chroniclers believe that it was Francis Hopkisnon who brought to life the suggestion of the Stars and Stripes. Francis Hopkinson was a preferred patriot, a lawyer, a Congressman from New Jersey, a signer of the Declaration of Independence, poet, musician, as well as identified civil servant.
He was assigned to the Continental Navy Board on November 6,1776. It was while serving on the Continental Navy Board that he turned his focus on creating the flag of the United States. The use of stars in that style is thought to have actually been the outcome of an experience in the war straightly pertaining to his propriety.
A book in Hopkinson’s collection at his home in Bordentown was taken by a Hessian soldier in December 1776, a dark year of the war. The book, Discourses on Public Occasions in America (London, 1762) by William Smith, D.D., had been a gift to him by the writer. The soldier, an I. Ewald, created on the inside cover that he had seen the writer near Philadelphia which he, Ewald, had actually taken the book from a fine nation seat near Philadelphia. The book was consequently provided to somebody in Philadelphia who returned it to Hopkinson. The soldier had written above and also listed below Hopkinson’s bookplate, which had three six pointed stars as well as his household adage, “Semper Paratus”, or “Always Ready”. The secure return of the book may well have represented to Hopkinson the resurgence of the Americans’ hope.
In a letter to the Board of Admiralty in 1780 Hopkinson asserted that he had actually developed “the flag of the United States of America” along with several ornaments, devices, and checks appearing on bills of exchange, ship papers, the seals of the boards of Admiralty as well as Treasury, and also the Great Seal of the United States. Hopkinson had received nothing for this job, as well as currently he submitted a bill and asked “whether a Quarter Cask of the public wine” would not be a reasonable and also appropriate reward for his labors.
Nevertheless, no one can be so certain who developed the American flag. The American flag is the spiritual symbol of the nation. It signifies the citizens’ birthright, their heritage of liberty purchased with blood as well as grief. The title deed of liberty, which is the nation’s to take pleasure in as well as keep in trust for posterity. Eternal alertness is the price of freedom. As you see the flag silhouetted against the tranquil skies of the country, you are reminded that the American flag stands for exactly what you are – no more, no less.
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As quoted from the Star Spangled Banner:
O say can you see, by the dawn’s early light,
What so proudly we hailed at the twilight’s last gleaming,
Whose broad stripes and bright stars through the perilous fight,
O’er the ramparts we watched, were so gallantly streaming?
And the rockets’ red glare, the bombs bursting in air,
Gave proof through the night that our flag was still there;
O say does that star-spangled banner yet wave
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave?
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