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.
Lafayette, Marquis de
Exeter, NH — The museum focuses on the Revolution, colonial life, the Ladd, Gilman, and Folsom families.
Philadelphia, PA — Founded in 1743 by Benjamin Franklin and John Bartram to promote
Useful Knowledge.Philosophical Hall (1789) is now a museum featuring art, scientific instruments, rare books, original manuscripts, natural history specimens, and curiosities.
PA — 11 September 1777.
NJ — 28 June 1778.
Chadds Ford, PA — Site of the 1777 battle, which was the largest of the war; includes visitor center with museum; also includes the houses that provided separate headquarters for Washington and the Marquis de Lafayette.
Charlestown, MA — With groundbreaking fifty years after the event of 17 June 1775, an obelisk commemorates the Battle of Bunker Hill and the fallen militia General Dr. Joseph Warren. A statue of Colonel William Prescott, one of the battle leaders, stands in front.
Portsmouth, RI — The earthwork redoubt is still discernible, it was a key position during the Battle of Rhode Island (1778), and provides a panoramic view of Mt. Hope Bay.
Washington, DC — Dedicated to Lafayette in 1824; at each corner is a statue of one foreign general who served in the war.
Philadelphia, PA — Washington’s headquarters in August 1777. The stone house has ongoing construction but can be visited.
Manalapan, NJ — Marks the site of the 1778 Battle of Monmouth; includes hiking and horseback riding trails and two houses from the period.
The Creation of the American Republic, 1776—1787 (1969)