What ultimately convinced Americans that they must revolt in 1776 was not that they were naturally and inevitably republican, for if that were truly the case evolution, not revolution, would have been the eventual solution. Rather it was the pervasive fear that they were not predestined to be a virtuous and egalitarian people that in the last analysis drove them into revolution in 1776. It was this fear and not their confidence in the peculiarity of their character that made them so readily and so remarkably responsive to Thomas Paine’s warning that the time for independence was at hand and that delay would be disastrous. By 1776 it had become increasingly evident that if they were to remain the kind of people they wanted to be they must become free of Britain.
Peale, Charles Willson
Princeton, NJ — 3 January 1777.
NJ — 26 December 1776 (Second Battle of Trenton, 2 January 1777).
Philadelphia, PA — Founded by Charles Willson Peale, William Rush, and others in 1805, this is the oldest art museum/school in the U.S. Includes works by Charles Willson Peale, William Rush, Benjamin West, Rembrandt Peale, Gilbert Stuart, and Thomas Sully.
Philadelphia, PA — Completed in 1824, it is used today as a portrait gallery for 185 paintings of colonial and federal leaders, many by Charles Willson Peale.
Philadelphia, PA — Completed in 1761, this Episcopal church is relatively unchanged, with a wonderfully ornate organ, original box-pews, and an historic cemetery that includes the grave of painter Charles Willson Peale.
The Creation of the American Republic, 1776—1787 (1969)