Timeline of the War for Independence

Causes of the War

1763, February 10
First Treaty of Paris ends the French and Indian War

1764, April 5
British Parliament passes the Sugar Act

1764, April 19
British Parliament passes Currency Act

1765, March 22
British Parliament passes the Stamp Act

1765, March 24
British Parliament passes the Quartering Act

1766, March 18
Parliament passes Declaratory Act and repeals Stamp Act

1767, June 29
British Parliament passes the Townshend Act

1768, October 1
British troops occupy Boston to curb perceived lawlessness

1770, March 5
British troops in Boston fire on rioters. The event becomes
known as the "Boston Massacre"

1770, April 12
Repeal of the Townshend Acts except for the tax on tea

1773, May 10
British Parliament passes Tea Act

1773, December 16
Colonists dump tea from the East India Co. ships into Boston
Harbor, event becomes known as the Boston Tea Party

1774, March 30
British Parliament passes Boston Port Act, shutting down
Boston Harbor, the first of the Intolerable or Coercive Acts

1774, June 22
British Parliament passes the Quebec Act, the last of the five
Intolerable Acts

1774, September 5
First Session of First Continental Congress in Philadelphia.

The War for Independence

1775, February 9
British Parliament declares Massachusetts to be in rebellion

1775, April 19
Battles of Lexington and Concord

1775, May 10
First Session of the Second Continental Congress in Philadelphia

1775, May 10
Patriots capture Fort Ticonderoga in New York

1775, June 14
Congress establishes the Continental Army

1775, June 15
Congress appoints George Washington Commander-in-Chief

1775, June 17
Battle of Bunker Hill in Massachusetts

1775, July 3
George Washington takes command of the Continental Army

1775, August 7
Louis XVI sends Julien Achard de Bonvouloir to America on a
fact-finding mission

1775, August 22
George III issues a proclamation declaring the Americans to be
in a state of open rebellion

1775, September 18
Continental Congress appoints a Secret Committee to import
gunpowder, musket locks, and arms

1775, October 13
Congress founds Continental Navy

1775, November 10
Congress founds Continental Marine Corps

1775, December 28
Julien-Alexandre Achard de Bonvouloir sends glowing report
detailing the Secret Committee of Correspondence to Paris

1776, March 3
Silas Deane receives instructions and list of supplies needed
from France for the American war effort

1776, March 17
Crown forces evacuate Boston

1776, April 22
Louis XVI decides to provide funding to the Americans via the
trading company of Roderigue Hortalez & Co. Soon after makes
1 million livres in cash available.

1776, June 7
Independence resolution first introduced in Congress

1776, June 20
Spain matches France's one million livres to American rebels

1776, July 4
Congress ratifies the Declaration of Independence

1776, August 14
Hessian troops begin to disembarked on Staten Island

1776, October 26
Benjamin Franklin sets sail for France from Philadelphia

1776, October 28
Battle of White Plains in New York

1776, December 8
Crown forces occupy Newport

1776, December 26
Battle of Trenton in New Jersey

1777, January 2
Second Battle of Trenton in New Jersey

1777, January 3
Battle of Princeton in New Jersey

1777, March 15
Congress authorizes Articles of Confederation

1777, June 13
Lafayette and de Kalb arrive

1777, August 6
Battle of Oriskany in New York

1777, September 3
Battle of Cooch's Bridge in Delaware

1777, September 11
Battle of Brandywine in Pennsylvania

1777, September 20
Paoli Massacre in Pennsylvania

1777, September 26
British occupy Philadelphia

1777, October 4
Battle of Germantown in Pennsylvania

1777, October 12
British forces are surrounded at Saratoga, surrender 5 days later

1777, October 22
Battle of Red Bank in New Jersey

1777, November 28
John Adams appointed to replace Silas Deane in Paris

1777, December 19
Continental Army enters winter quarters at Valley Forge, Pennsylvania

1777, December 17
France recognizes the United States as an independent nation

1778, February 6
American representatives in Paris sign a "Treaty of Amity and
Friendship" and a secret "Treaty of Alliance" with France

1778, March 20
King Louis XVI receives U.S. representatives Benjamin Franklin,
Silas Deane and Arthur Lee

1778, May 4
Congress ratifies Treaty of Alliance with France

1778, May 6
Continental Army at Valley Forge celebrates French alliance

1778, 18 June
British evacuate Philadelphia

1778, 19 June
Continental Army leaves winter quarters at Valley Forge

1778, 28 June
Battle of Monmouth in New Jersey

1778, July 2
Continental Congress returns to Philadelphia

1778, November 30
Continental Army enters winter quarters in Middlebrook, New Jersey

1778, December 29
British capture Savannah in Georgia

1779, January 11
Lafayette sails to France to solicit more assistance

1779, March 11
Congress establishes the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers out of
mostly of French personnel serving in the Continental Army

1779, June 3
Continental Army leaves winter quarters in Middlebrook for
New York Highlands

1779, July 16
Battle of Stony Point in New York

1779, September 16
French and American siege of Savannah

1779, October 25
British evacuate Newport

1779, December 1
Continental Army enters winter quarters at Morristown , New Jersey

1780, February 2
King Louis XVI approves the expédition particulière, the
transportation of forces to be stationed in the USA

1780, March 1
Louis XVI promotes Rochambeau to lieutenant general and
puts him in command of the expedition

1780, May 12
Charleston in South Carolina falls to Crown forces

1780, May 29
Battle of the Waxhaws in South Carolina

1780, June 22
Battle of Springfield in New Jersey

1780, July 11
A fleet carrying some 450 officers and 5,300 French troops under
comte de Rochambeau arrives in Newport, Rhode Island

1780, August 16
Battle of Camden in South Carolina

1780, October 7
Battle of King's Mountain in South Carolina

1781, January 17
Battle of Cowpens in South Carolina

1781, March 15
Battle of Guilford Courthouse in North Carolina

1781, June 29
Battle of Spencer's Ordinary in Virginia

1781, July 6
Battle of Green Spring in Virginia

1781, September 5
In the Battle off the Capes, French Admiral de Grasse prevents
a British fleet from entering the Chesapeake Bay, sealing the
fate of Lord Cornwallis in Yorktown

1781, September 8
Battle of Eutaw Springs in South Carolina

1781, September 28
Beginning of the siege of Yorktown

1781, October 3
Battle of the Hook near Gloucester in Virginia

1781, October 19
Cornwallis surrenders. The Continental Army marches north to
its winter quarters in Pennsylvania, New Jersey and New York
in early November. French forces will spend the winter of
1781/82 in and around Williamsburg

1782, July 4
Rochambeau's infantry begins its march from Virginia to Boston

1782, July 11
British evacuate Savannah, Georgia

1782, December 25
Rochambeau's infantry sails out of Boston Harbor for the
Caribbean. Lauzun's Legion winters in Wilmington, Delaware

The Start of a New Nation

1783, January 20
Preliminaries of Peace are signed in Paris

1783, February 4
George III issues Proclamation of Cessation of Hostilities
ending the American War of Independence

1783, April 15
Congress ratifies preliminary peace with Great Britain

1783, May 11
Lauzun's Legion sails out of Philadelphia for France

1783, May 18
United Empire Loyalists reach Canada

1783, September 3
Second Treaty of Paris ends American War of Independence.
Great Britain acknowledges the independence of the USA

1783, November 25
Crown forces evacuate New York City

1783, December 23
George Washington resigns as commander in chief

1784, June 2
Congress dissolves the Continental Army

1784, June 3
Congress creates the United States Army

1787, May 25
Constitutional Convention assembles in Philadelphia

1789, February 4
George Washington is elected President of the United States

1789, March 4
The US Constitution takes effect

1789, April 30
George Washington is sworn in as First President

Last updated: February 26, 2015

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