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American Revolution historiography Mercy Otis Warren, the first historian of the American Revolution This page contains a brief introduction to the historiography of the American Revolution.
Historiography Historians and the american revolution the study of how history is written and the different perspectives of the past provided by historians. Contrary to what some may believe, history is not a concrete narrative or set of facts.
Instead, history is an ongoing discussion and debate about the past. Historians may study the same periods, people and events — but they approach these topics with different views, assumptions, priorities and methods.
Historians often reach different conclusions and form different interpretations and arguments.
This is particularly true for those historians who research major events like wars and revolutions, which are by their nature politically tumultuous and divisive.
Historical understanding and viewpoints can also change over time, as new evidence is uncovered and new perspectives are identified and explored. American Revolution historiography spans more than two centuries, involves thousands of different historians and contains many different conclusions and perspectives.
The following links contain brief summaries of its main historical movements: These early works mirrored the writings of Plutarch, an ancient historian who wrote history as though it were a record of great men and their leadership in difficult times.
Instead, writers like Weems and Wirt relied on eyewitness accounts, anecdotes and the memories and recollections of others.
These books were also written for effect — and indeed for profit — as much as for historical record or scholarly intent. They often exaggerated, embellished or published unverifiable facts about their subjects.
When unable to locate transcripts of notable Henry speeches, Wirt reconstructed the speeches himself. According to historian Ray Raphaelthe author of Founding Myths, the myths and inventions circulated by these early 19th century biographers have since hardened into accepted public truths.
The Loyalists late ss Thomas Hutchinson Revolutionaries and their supporters were not alone in writing histories of the American Revolution.
Several Loyalists and British historians put pen to paper in the generation after Needless to say, their perspective was more sympathetic to Britain and more antagonistic to those responsible for the revolution.
Speaker of the Pennsylvania legislature Joseph Galloway, who returned to England inpublished his own history titled Historical and Political Reflections on the Rise and Progress of the American Rebellion Galloway attributes the revolution to a lack of understanding and experience of the American colonies among British politicians of the revolutionary period.
Boucher, an Anglican clergyman and close friend of George Washington despite his loyalism, took greater issue with the actions and claims of American radicals.
Peter Oliver, a former chief justice of Massachusetts who fled Boston inpublished a history called Origin and Progress of the American Rebellion Oliver, who was subject to threats and intimidation, was also strongly critical of Bostonian radicals.
Perhaps the best-known Loyalist history of the revolution was authored by Thomas Hutchinson. The Whigs s The traditional view of Patrick Henry giving a fiery speech to his fellow colonists For most of the s, serious historians presented the American Revolution as an epic story of idealism, nationalism and progress.
This grand narrative portrayed the revolution as a struggle between the forces of liberty and modernity America and the regressive, corrupt and morally bankrupt Old World Britain. This perspective was, needless to say, one-sided.
These early histories belonged firmly to the Whig school.
Whig historians imagined history in general, and the American Revolution in particular, as a journey of progress and advancement. Human society was improving and progressing toward a state of political and social fulfilment, the Whigs argued, and the United States was at the forefront of this progress.
These histories maintained the Whig view that the revolution was a profound event in human history. They supported this position with more rigorous uses of evidence and analysis. These late 19th century historians portrayed the revolution as a worthy cause that was guided by benevolent and wise leaders.
That these achievements were won with minimal bloodshed or destruction was a testimony to the American people and their desire for freedom and progress.
The Progressives early s Charles Beard Whig perspectives of the American Revolution were challenged in the early 20th century. A new breed of historians, loosely referred to as the Progressives, began to ask whether the revolution was driven by economic factors and self-interest, rather than progress, patriotism and benevolence.
These merchants, Schlesinger claimed, were keen to increase their profits by shedding British trade regulations and gaining entry to British-dominated markets. Jensen argued that the economic slump of the s was an understandable byproduct of war, not of intrinsic weaknesses in the Articles.
The Federalist attack on the Articles, Jensen contended, was driven by their personal desire for stronger controls over trade and finance.News & Advocacy.
AHA Announcements; AHA in the News. Advertising in FNN; Statements and Resolutions of Support and Protest. Guiding Principles on Taking a Public Stance. However, victory in the American Revolution from was far from inevitable. It is easy to see how a more aggressive British strategy could have led to total victory over Washington’s Army.
Loyalists were American colonists who stayed loyal to the British Crown during the American Revolutionary War, often called Tories, Royalists, or King's Men at the time.
They were opposed by the Patriots, who supported the revolution, and called them "persons inimical to the liberties of America". Prominent Loyalists repeatedly assured the British government that many thousands of them would. The men who led the American Revolution—George Washington, Sam and John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, Ethan Allen, and countless others—are well-known.
But . The American Revolution was a colonial revolt that took place between and The American Patriots in the Thirteen Colonies won independence from Great Britain, becoming the United States of benjaminpohle.com defeated the British in the American Revolutionary War (–) in alliance with France and others..
Members of American colonial society argued the position of "no taxation. South Carolina in the American Revolution: A Source Guide for Genealogists and Historians. The DAR Library offers the second in its new series of publications that focus on research in each of the original states during the period of the American Revolution.