War of Independence Timeline: Military Dates

War of Independence Timeline: Military Dates


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Many historians accept a distinction made by John Adams between the American Revolution and the War for Independence. The major events of the armed conflict are summarized in the table below.The events that transformed colonists into an independent people are summarized in the American Revolution timeline.

Date

Main Theater

Secondary Theater

Other

1775

March



Virginia assembly suspended; Patrick Henry "liberty or death" speech

April 18

Revere and Dawes alert countryside

April 19

Battle of Lexington and Concord

May 10


Ethan Allen at Ticonderoga; Crown Point falls May 12Second Continental Congress convenes in Philadelphia

May 25

Henry Clinton, Charles Cornwallis and John Burgoyne arrive in Boston

May 31



Mecklenburg Resolves (N.C.)

June 15



Washington named commander-in-chief; assumes command July 3

June 17

Battle of Bunker Hill

July 5



Olive Branch Petition

July 6



Declaration of Causes of Taking up Arms

August 23



George III declares colonies in rebellion

October



Congress authorizes naval construction

October 4



Court-martial of Benjamin Church

November 13


Montgomery at Montreal

November 16



Edmund Burke pleads American case in Parliament

November 29



Committee of Secret Correspondence formed

December 9


Battle of Great Bridge (Va.)

December 22



Parliament passes American Prohibitory Act

December 31


Arnold fails at Quebec

1776

Campaigns of 1776

January 15



Paine's Common Sense published

February 27


Loyalist loss at Moore's Creek Bridge (N.C.)

March 3


Continental Navy victory in Bahamas

March 17

British evacuate Boston

June 7



Richard Henry Lee introduces independence resolution in Congress

June 28


Battle of Sullivan's Island (S.C.)

June 29

William Howe to New York harbor; occupies Staten Island on July 2

July 2



Independence resolution approved by Congress

July 4



Jefferson's version of Declaration approved

July 12

Adm. Richard Howe to New York harbor

August 2



Declaration of Independence signed

August 27

British victory at Long Island

August
29-30

Washington escapes disaster at Brooklyn Heights

September 11



Staten Island Peace Conference

September 15

British occupy New York City

September 16

Rare American victory at Harlem Heights

September 21



New York City fire;
Nathan Hale captured

October 11


Arnold at Valcour Island

October 28

British victory at White Plains

November 16

British victory at Fort Washington

November 20

Fort Lee abandoned

December 20



Congress relocates in Baltimore

December 24

Washington war council with generals

December 26

Patriot surprise victory at Trenton

1777Campaigns of 1777

January 3

Patriot victory at Princeton

January - May

Washington winters at Morristown

March 4



Congress returns to Philadelphia

July 5


British take Fort Ticonderoga

August 6


Tactical draw at Oriskany

August 16


Stark over Hessians at Bennington

September 11

British victory at Banndywine

September 16

Battle of the Clouds

September 19


Gates victory at Freeman's Farm

September 21

Paoli Massacre

September 26

Howe occupies Philadelphia

September 27



Congress convenes in Lancaster, Pa.

October 4

American loss at Germantown

October 7


Burgoyne loss at Bemis Heights

October 17


Burgoyne surrender at Saratoga

October 22

Americans hold Fort Mercer

November 15



Congress adopts Articles of Confederation; sent to states for approval

November 16

Fort Mifflin falls to British

December 19

American winter camp at Valley Forge opens

1778

February 6



U.S.-French Alliance signed

May 20

Battle of Barren Hill

June 28

Battle of Monmouth

July 4


Clark takes Kaskaskia

August 8


Siege of Newport, R.I.

December 29


British occupy Savannah

1779

February 14


Loyalists lose at Kettle Creek

February 25


Clark takes Vincennes

April 24



John Paul Jones captures the Drake

June 21



Spain enters war against Britain

July 2



Congress returns to Philadelphia

July 3


Wyoming Valley attacks

July 4


G.R. Clark takes Kaskaskia

July


Connecticut cities raided by British

July 16


Wayne takes Stony Point

August 19

Lee strikes Paulus Hook

September 23



John Paul Jones takes Serapis

September 28

Tappan Massacre

November 11


Cherry Hill Massacre

1780

February 23


Clark victory at Vincennes

May 12

Charleston falls to British

May 29

British victory at Waxhaw Creek

June 20

Loyalists defeated at Ramseur's Mill

July 11



Arrival of first French toops

August 6

Loyalists defeated at Hanging Rock

August 16

British victory at Camden under Tarleton

September 23


Arrest of John Andre

September 25


Arnold's West Point plot unearthed

October 7

American victory at King's Mountain

1781

January



Pennsylvania troop mutiny

January 17

Morgan victorious at Cowpens

March 2



Articles of Confederation adopted by 13th state

March 15

Costly British victory at Guilford Courthouse

June 6

Americans take Augusta

July 6

Wayne defeated at Green Springs Farm

September 5

Battle of the Capes

September 6


Arnold raid on New London, Conn.

September 8

Greene defeated at Eutaw Springs

October 19

Cornwallis surrender at Yorktown

1782

March 20



Lord North resigns

July 11

British evacuate Savannah

November 30



Preliminary peace signed between Britain and U.S.

December 14

British evacuate Charleston

1783

April 19



Congress ratifies treaty

September 3



Treaty of Paris signed

November 16



Congress convenes at Annapolis, Md.

November 25


British evacuate New York City

December 4



Washington's farewell dinner with officers

December 23



Washington resigns commission at Annapolis