American Revolution

Harry Washington | The African Americans

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This video from The African Americans: Many Rivers to Cross describes the life of Harry Washington, a slave owned by George Washington at the beginning of the American Revolution. Sensing that the talk of liberty and independence was not meant for slaves, Harry Washington joined the Loyalist regiment, the Black Pioneers, along with 20,000 slaves who decided to fight for the British.

Who Won the American Revolution | Crash Course US History #7

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John Green teaches you about the American Revolution. John will teach you about the major battles of the war, and discuss the strategies on both sides. Everyone is familiar with how this war played out for the Founding Fathers; they got to become the Founding Fathers. But what did the revolution mean to the common people in the United States? For white, property-owning males, it was pretty sweet. They gained rights that were a definite step up from being British Colonial citizens. For everyone else, the short-term gains were not clear. Women's rights were unaffected, and slaves remained in slavery. As for poor white folks, they remained poor and disenfranchised. The reality is it took a long time for this whole democracy thing to get underway, and the principles of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness weren't immediately available to all these newly minted Americans.

The Terrible Battle of Blue Licks

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After the siege of Bryan Station in mid-August 1782, Daniel Boone, commanding one of three divisions of Kentucky riflemen, followed the Native American invasion force as it withdrew toward the Ohio River. The Kentuckians marched toward the Native American force at Blue Licks and were horribly defeated. Boone’s son, Israel, and his nephew, Thomas Boone, were killed. Blue Licks was the bloodiest engagement on the Kentucky frontier and one of the last battles of the American Revolution.

Mordecai Sheftall - Colonial Hero | Georgia Stories

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When the British attacked Savannah, Mordecai Sheftall was captured in a skirmish when he refused to abandon his son. Marion Levy Mendel, a Sheftall descendant, describes the capture. Threatened with "skivvering", he refused to reveal where patriot supplies were hidden. Sheftall was imprisoned, escaped, and recaptured. He was eventually pardoned and remained a patriot throughout.

Slavery | Crash Course US History #13

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John Green teaches you about America's "peculiar institution," slavery. John will talk about what life was like for a slave in the 19th century United States, and how slaves resisted oppression, to the degree that was possible. We'll hear about cotton plantations, violent punishment of slaves, day to day slave life, and slave rebellions. Nat Turner, Harriet Tubman, and Whipped Peter all make an appearance. Slavery as an institution is arguably the darkest part of America's history, and we're still dealing with its aftermath 150 years after it ended.

Should 12-Year-Olds Be Allowed to Vote? | America From Scratch

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Voting age takes on new relevance today as young people across the country are making their voices heard in the wake of the Stoneman Douglas High School shooting earlier this year. Washington, D.C., is on track to lower the voting age to 16.

Revisiting Minnesota State Rep. Phyllis Kahn’s decades-long fight to expand voting rights to young people, this episode explores who has historically had voting rights in the U.S. and how the overall trend toward greater access may continue into the future.

Where US Politics Came From | Crash Course US History #9

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John Green teaches you where American politicians come from. In the beginning, George Washington was elected president with no opposition, everything was new and exciting, and everyone just got along. For several months. Then the contentious debate about the nature of the United States began, and it continues to this day. Washington and his lackey/handler Alexander Hamilton pursued an elitist program of federalism. The opposition, creatively known as the anti-federalists, wanted to build some kind of agrarian pseudo-paradise where every (white) man could have his own farm, and live a free, self-reliant life. The founding father who epitomized this view was Thomas Jefferson.

Mumbet

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In this segment from the PBS series Finding Your Roots, the story of Mumbet, is told. Mumbet was a female slave who, after hearing the Declaration of Independence read, decided to seek her own freedom. Kyra Sedgwick's ancestor, Theodore Sedgwick, served as Mumbet's lawyer and helped her ultimately win her freedom.

Mercantilism and the American Revolution

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In this video from Finding Your Roots, Tina Fey learns about an ancestor who helped Benjamin Franklin develop the manufacturing industry in the American colonies. The background essay and discussion questions help students understand British mercantilism and its effects on colonial politics.   

106: First Century of Statehood, Part I (Georgia and the American Revolution) | Georgia Stories

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Segments: The Big Question, Savannah Under Attack, and The Nancy Hart Story.

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