Yorktown: A Major Cause Of The Revolutionary War

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The American Revolution is undoubtedly one of the most defining events in American history. The American colonists, after suffering under unjust and improper taxation, decided to revolt from Great Britain and sought to become a nation of sovereign, independent states. “Taxation without representation,” as we have come to know this as, is perhaps the most major cause of the war. The climax of this war, the Yorktown Campaign, perfectly encapsulates the colonists’ desire for independence and their yearning for their own sovereignty (History). In the decades prior to the American Revolution, American colonists enjoyed many benefits of living under British rule, such as military protection, profits from trade, and political rights. They also received due process of law when arrested, freedom of the press, trial by jury, and protection from foreign attack. However, by today’s understanding,…show more content…
In July, after an unsuccessful campaign in the Carolinas, General Cornwallis moved up into Yorktown to join the British forces that were already there. His position, however, was vulnerable to any American ships that would seek to form a blockade in the nearby Chesapeake Bay. Led by Baron von Steuben, General Anthony Wayne, and General Marquis de Lafayette, American forces fought the British in several small battles, forcing them to retreat down the York peninsula. Believing that Yorktown was an excellent strategic location, Cornwallis fortified his defense and awaited naval support, reinforcements, and supplies from fellow Redcoat General Henry Clinton in New York. However, in late August and throughout early September, a French fleet under Admiral Francois de Grasse arrived from the Caribbean. This fleet blockaded the Chesapeake Bay, and defeated British naval forces, preventing Cornwallis from receiving the support he direly needed
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