Revolutionary War Battles - White Plains Public Schools

Fort Ticonderoga
May 1775
During the American Revolution, Fort
Ticonderoga located on the western side
of Lake Champlain in New York was an
important post on the route from Canada
to the colonies.
Colonel Benedict Arnold and Ethan Allen
with his Green Mountain Boys led a
surprise attack on the British fort in May
of 1775. The Americans took the fort
without firing a shot.
In mid-winter of January 1776, Colonel
Henry Knox led an expedition to Fort
Ticonderoga to bring back the cannons
that Arnold and Allen had captured. The
cannons were lined up to face the British
ships that were blockading the port of
Boston. The British were forced to
evacuate Boston, leaving the city and port
to the Americans.
Battle of Bunker Hill
June 1775
• Actually took place at Breed’s Hill
• The colonists build earthworks to
protect themselves in battle
• The British rush the hill 3 times
• The Colonists are forced to retreat due
to lack of ammunition and supplies
“These are the times that
try men’s souls…”
Valley Forge
September 1777
When General William Howe and his British troops took Philadelphia
in September of 1777, General Washington was forced to make
winter camp about 20 miles from Philadelphia at Valley Forge.
It was a miserable winter for the 10,000 soldiers of the
Continental Army at Valley Forge. Many soldiers lacked shoes and
warm clothing. Food was scarce. Diseases such as smallpox and
typhoid fever swept through the camp. 2500 men died that winter
from the cold, disease and malnutrition.
During this winter, General Lafayette joined the Continental Army,
without pay, and impressed the troops and Washington by living
under the same conditions as the soldiers.
Another important addition to the Continental Army was Baron
Friedrich von Steuben. He knew how to train an army. Even under
the hardships of the camp, he drilled the soldiers repeatedly
during the winter so that by springtime the Continental Army had
become a strong and disciplined fighting force.
Who are these Hessians?
Hessians are soldiers from
Germany. King George hired
these soldiers to fight the
Surprising Them in their Undies!
Battle of Trenton
Battle of Trenton
December 1776
On the night of December 25,
1776, George Washington crossed
the freezing Delaware River to
attack Hessians.
Washington’s troops Then they
marched nine miles in the early
morning hours to reach Trenton at
eight o'clock.
The American troops surprised
the Hessian mercenary soldiers in
an early morning raid and the
Americans captured nearly 1000
men. There were no American
This victory was the turning point
in the war of independence for
the Americans.
Battle of Saratoga
October 1777
The American forces were led by
General Horatio Gates, General Philip
Schuyler and General Benedict Arnold.
General Burgoyne led the British
Gates lost the first battle and after a
disagreement with Arnold about battle
tactics, Gates relieved Arnold of his
command. The British forces were
exhausted but were ordered to attack
Bemis Heights. While Gates defensive
moves were effective, it was General
Arnold who saw an opening to turn the
battle into an offensive move. Despite
having been relieved of his command,
Arnold joined the battle anyway. His
efforts were so successful and the
British troops so beaten down that
General Burgoyne was forced to
surrender a few days at Saratoga.
Burgoyne is forced to surrender.
What do I Need to know about the Battle of Saratoga?
• The British plan
was to cut the
colonies in two like
a snake- when you
cut off a snake’s
head it dies!
• This plan did not
work because one
army for the
British didn’t show
up and another was
late! The only army
there was easily
Outcomes of the Battle of Saratoga
• The colonial army WON!!!
• France decides to help out the colonists.
Battle of Saratoga
Hope for the Colonies!
Thank You, France!
• Upon hearing of the American
victory at Saratoga, the French
declared recognition of the United
States of America and fully
supported their war of
Battle of Yorktown
Battle of Yorktown
August-October 1781
The last major battle of the American
Revolution was fought at Yorktown.
Washington learned that the French
Admiral de Grasse was sailing to Virginia to
prevent the British army under the
command of General Cornwallis from
leaving Yorktown. He and the French
General Rochambeau rushed their troops
to Yorktown to trap the British and
prevent them from escaping over land.
Cornwallis was surrounded. The American
and French troops gradually closed in on
Cornwallis surrendered to Washington on
Oct 19, 1781.
What do I need to know about
The Battle of Yorktown?
• The British army set up camp on a
• Washington’s army blocks tem in to the
west and the French Navy blocks them
to the east.
• They are trapped and help can not arrive
Outcomes of the Battle Of Yorktown
• The Colonial army wins the WAR!!!
• Colonists are free of British Rule! No
more King!
• They are their own country
The World Turned Upside Down
The British band played this tune when the British surrendered at the
Battle of Yorktown
• The Six and a half years of war was over.