american revolution becomes european war

american revolution becomes european war - Jake Holtz...

Info iconThis preview shows pages 1–3. Sign up to view the full content.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Jake Holtz 2/4/08 The American Revolution becomes a European War: The American perspective July 4 th , 1776 is a day that lives and will forever be remembered. This is the day that the Continental Congress of the colonies belonging to Great Britain in North America signed the Declaration of Independence, thus declaring themselves free from the rule of Great Britain. However this was not the end of the story for the United States gaining their independence. The Revolutionary War that followed has been well documented, sometimes even thought of as iconic, in the centuries following. In the many articles, books and monographs that have been written it has been well noted that the success of the Americans in this war, especially in closing the deal towards the end of the war, hinged on the help of the French. The resulting friendship between the two nations has grown exponentially over the years. However, the alliance did not start out so strong. This begs the question, how exactly did the Americans feel about the French and how did the alliance evolve over the course the war? Initially, the common American did not know much about their new ally. Instead, they relied on the stereotypes that were formed and subsequently fostered by the Britains during the repeated imperial wars in which the two European powers struggled for power in the Americas. What were these stereotypes? Well, “the widely held American stereotype of Frenchmen, at least before 1775, suggested an incarnation of the Devil…” (Stinchcombe, p. 2) The French also had their own doubts. The merchants did not want the peacetime prosperity to end. Louis XVI viewed the revolution with skepticism; even though Britain was France’s foremost enemy, no European monarch wanted to see another unwanted. Many French were hesitant, also, because they did not feel that the colonists could succeed in the War. If they were to enter on the colonists’ side and then lose that would mean even more war against France, and after centuries of war against Britain, they were tired of it. One man, however, single handedly helped to change that. Before Benjamin Franklin arrived there were French advisors that felt like it would be a good idea to enter in on the side of the colonists. However, that was met with much more pessimism. Benjamin Franklin’s role was to make it appear to the French – and to a certain extent the Spanish – the option of an alliance
Background image of page 1

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon
was a viable one, that the colonists could win. Ironically, it was not his words but his appearance
Background image of page 2
Image of page 3
This is the end of the preview. Sign up to access the rest of the document.

This note was uploaded on 05/30/2008 for the course HISTRY 301 taught by Professor Shrum during the Spring '08 term at Wisc Whitewater.

Page1 / 5

american revolution becomes european war - Jake Holtz...

This preview shows document pages 1 - 3. Sign up to view the full document.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Ask a homework question - tutors are online