Before gaining independence in 1776, Americans developed a unique system of government seen nowhere else before, along with new revolutionary ideas. This was influenced by finally realizing their rights and to stand up for what they want, this affected the development of the American identity. They developed a representative government with the ideals of a democratic society. These new ideas that came before their independence brought along with them many rights and a brand new sense of American identity. The colonists were deprived of their rights by the British government causing the colonist to want to fight for their freedom and gain independence from Great Britain.
The American Revolution was a very expensive war, and money did not come easy for Great Britain or the colonies because of the expenses and the economic instability they both already had. The expenses of the war came from spending excess money on artillery, troops, and transportation. Britain and the colonies had to pay money for some troops, artillery, and ammunition, but only Britain really had to pay the major expense of sailing all the soldiers and artillery across the Atlantic. Both of these groups of people had ways to try and get some money back. In England, teapots were made that said “No Stamp Act” and “American Liberty Restored” and sold these teapots to the colonist to try and make a profit (Doc. 1). But in the colonies, Charles Inglis, an Anglican church minister, says that the commerce of the thirteen colonies cannot account for all the expenses on its own so they have to tax the people to get some of the money back since they are fighting for their freedom (Doc. 6). The debt of the colonies influenced American identity because of the taxes put in place afterward that the colonists didn’t like. This later causes the people of colonies to stand up for what they want and question the government which is a big part of American identity.
During the American Revolution, the colonies are deprived of their rights by the British government by the unfair treatment of the colonist and the several acts put in place by parliament. The unfair treatment of the colonists is due to the British not giving them their freedom or natural rights. And the acts that are put in place by the British, in the colonies, go against all of the rights of the people, that are later put in our constitution. In the Virginia House of Burgesses, it says that the people of the colonies have the right to question the government’s rule and overthrow the government if need be, and they should not be punished for doing so (Doc. 2). Also, Quaker leaders, before they gain independence, say that the colonies have the right to rebel from the British government, but the British do not let them (Doc. 4). The colonists learn to stand up for their rights and fight for them because of the righteous influences on the colonies. The British depriving the colonies’ people of their rights had a big influence on the American identity because as this happens the colonists stand up for what they believe in and for their rights, which is a major part in the development of the American identity.
During this time in the American Revolution, the British government was trying to keep control over the colonies and keep the colonies from gaining independence and freedom. But the colonies have the right not to be controlled by the British Government without their approval. This is used to get people to join the Patriots and fight for their freedoms against the British. Samuel Adams says that all the colonists have rights to not be controlled by the British government and can withdraw themselves from their rule at any time (Doc. 3). Samuel Adams as an individual also had a role in the development of the American identity, he helped with that by helping repeal unwanted British acts from the colonies giving them confidence on rebelling from British. Also, Janet Schaw says in her writing that the people of the colonies need to join the Patriots side of the revolution, and if you refuse they will ruin your life (Doc. 5). This shows that the colonists need to fight for their rights by joining the Patriots to fight for the colonies’ independence from Great Britain. This had a great effect on the American identity after this because this shows the colonists that they can fight for their freedom and join the Patriots to rid Britain’s rule.
American identity has always been an important thing, but during the Revolutionary War, it actually started to mean something. I believe that the colonists realizing their rights and their ability to gain freedom from Britain was the main way that the American identity developed. This, in turn, showed them that they could fight for their independence by using new revolutionary tactics. Also, Americans developed a new system of government that was never seen before because of them winning their independence, this system of government was a representative democracy. This system of government that was developed around the time of the Revolutionary War has been in place ever since; we still use the system of government in today’s society. A representative democracy is a system of government in which all citizens are eligible to vote on representatives which represent the state to vote for higher members of Congress.