- 1775 – On “the 18th of April in ’75“, Paul Revere was sent by Dr. Joseph Warren to go to Lexington to warn John Hancock and Samuel Adams. The Battle of Lexington and Concord were the two battles that began on that day and were the official beginning of war between the colonies and Great Britain. On June 17, 1775, in British Soldiers drove American colonists from Bunker Hill. On November 10th the Second Continental Congress resolved to raise two battalions of Continental Marines. General Richard Montgomery fell during the attack on Quebec on December 31, 1775, the first American officer to die in battle.
- 1776 – In May, George Mason authored the Virginia Declaration of Rights, the first authoritative formulation of the doctrine of inalienable rights, which was to become the basis for the American Declaration of Independence and the Bill of Rights of the Constitution of the United States. The Second Continental Congress met on May 10, 1776, in the Pennsylvania State House in Philadelphia. The Declaration of Independence was written and members of the Second Continental Congress decided to officially put the colonies in a state of defense. On June 7, 1776, Virginian Richard Henry Lee made his famous proposal to congress: “that these United Colonies are, and of right ought to be, free and independent States.” On July 4th, the Declaration of Independence was signed in Congress. On July 8th, the Liberty Bell rang out to call the people of Philadelphia to hear the first reading of the Declaration of Independence. The next day, on official orders of General George Washington, the Declaration of Independence was read to his army in New York. Nathan Hale was hanged as traitor on September 22, 1776. On Christmas Day of 1776, Washington led his army across the Delaware River and launched a successful attack against Hessian troops in Trenton, New Jersey. At the Battle of Trenton which took place on December 26, 1776, Washington chased the British out of New Jersey. All four Hessian colonels in Trenton were killed during the battle.
- 1777 – On the 3rd of January, Washington defeated General Howe at the Battle of Princeton. On April 26th, when the British marched on Danbury, Connecticut, young Cybil Ludington rode on horseback all night long during a thunderstorm to warn her father’s militiamen. On June 14th, 1777, the Congress designed the flag of the United States to be “thirteen stripes alternate red and white, that the Union be thirteen stars white in a blue field. . .” The Battle of Saratoga in September and October 1777, was a decisive American victory resulting in the surrender of the entire British army that was invading New York from Canada. Benjamin Rush was appointed Surgeon General to the armies of the Middle Department in the Continental Army.
- 1778 – General Washington‘s troops winter quartered at Valley Forge from December of 1777 to June of 1778. The Battle of Monmouth took place on June 27, 1778, which is where Molly Pitcher became the famous heroine for fetching pitchers of water in the summer heat for the soldiers. Benedict Arnold began his career as a traitor by making deals with the British.
- 1781 – At the young age of 31, John André was hanged. George Washington, with the help of the French, defeated British troops in Yorktown, Virginia. By October the Americans troops had circled the village Yorktown, Virginia, trapping Cornwallis and his British army. His surrender at Yorktown on 17 October, marks the ending of the Revolutionary War.
- 1783 – The Revolutionary War officially ends. Afterwards, John Adams helped write the peace treaty with England, and it, The Peace Treaty of Paris, was signed on September 3, 1783.
My favorite timeline of all is from “Washington Crossing” which starts with the founding of Pennsylvania in 1681, and continues until December of 1783, in New York City, when General Washington bid farewell to his officers, resigned his commission to the Continental Congress and retired to his home at Mount Vernon. From Founding to Rebellion