Important People of the Revolution

The American Revolution was a period involving events in which the American colonies began to assert independence from the British Crown. The most important part of the American Revolution was the American Revolutionary War which lasted from 1775-1883 resulting in a victory for the Patriots and creating a new independent nation. There were many people involved in the American Revolution and Revolutionary War. Five important figures were British King George III, military general George Washington, and founding fathers Thomas Jefferson, Patrick Henry and Benjamin Franklin.

King George III was the reigning monarch of Great Britain at the time of the American Revolution. He had assumed the throne in 1760 at the young age of 22. His main aim was to hold onto control of the American colonies and keep them profitable for the English crown.

King George issued many measures to attempt to end protests and revolts in the colonies. He is is often accused of obstinately trying to keep Great Britain at war with the revolutionaries in America, despite the opinions of his own ministers who felt that they should accept defeat. They finally did accept defeat in 1781 and King George III authorized the Treaties of Paris recognizing America as an independent state.

George Washington served as the Commander in the Continental Army to fight against Britain. The Continental Army had many disadvantages and difficulties during the war. During his command, George Washington was able to train troops, secure supplies, and defend important cities against British attack. His leadership helped the Continental Army reach a victory against British forces. After the war, George Washington was elected as the first President of the United States.

Founding Father, Thomas Jefferson was the main author of The Declaration of Independence. Jefferson was a prominent Virginian politician and early supporter of the Patriot cause. The Declaration of Independence explained why the 13 colonies wished to be free of British rule and expressed the importance of individual rights and freedom. He was a leading figure in shaping the ideas of the American Revolution. Thomas Jefferson later became the third president of the United States

Patrick Henry was another important founding father during the American Revolution. He is most remembered for his speech, “Give me liberty or give me death!”

At the time, governments were still unsure if they should mobilize a military to go to war with Britain. Patrick Henry argued in favor of mobilization and helped convince officials to take military action against the British.

Of course, Henry was a contradiction like many of this era. He held over 60 men, women, and children in slavery by the time of his own death in 1799. 

Benjamin Franklin was an important writer, philosopher and founding father during the American Revolution. He was an ambassador for the American colonies and attempted to negotiate with the British government to address the taxes and regulations on the colonies. When Britain did not agree, he became a supporter of the American independence movement. His ideas were highly influential in creating support for an independent nation. He urged the colonies to join together and was an author and signer of the Declaration of Independence.