America Marks 240th Anniversary of Victory That Won Our Freedom

Wednesday, Oct. 19, marks the 240th anniversary of the American victory over the British at Yorktown, Virginia.

The 1781 victory had been six-and-a-half years within the making. “The shot heard ’around the world,” which launched the Revolutionary Conflict, had been fired on April 19, 1775, in Lexington, Massachusetts.

Gen. George Washington, commander in chief of the Continental Military, had had just a few wins  — on the battles of Trenton, Princeton and Saratoga, to call some — and lots of defeats alongside the best way.

Rick Green, founding father of Patriot Academy, mentioned in an electronic mail to The Western Journal that one of many classes of Yorktown is that “victory doesn’t come in a single day.”

“The give up at Yorktown was greater than 5 years after the Declaration of Independence and eleven and a half years after The Boston Bloodbath,” he added.


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Washington’s best victory within the arduous battle had been protecting his military within the subject.

His struggle had primarily been one among strategic positioning for the aim of preserving his forces. So long as the Continental Military stayed within the battle, the hope of American independence was alive.

By way of well timed retreats and feints, Washington’s military was capable of keep away from whole defeat by the redcoats. With the assistance of the French, the Individuals believed, they may land a crippling, maybe war-ending blow.

In the summertime of 1781, British forces — about 8,000 sturdy beneath the command of Lord Charles Cornwallis — marched by means of the Virginia countryside wreaking havoc. A detachment of troops nearly captured Virginia Gov. Thomas Jefferson at Monticello in Charlottesville.

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The one Continental pressure within the area to oppose Cornwallis was a division of about 1,200 troops beneath Gen. Marquis de Lafayette, a younger French aristocrat who had joined the American trigger in 1777.

By early August, Cornwallis had encamped his males on the Yorktown peninsula to await transport north by ship.

Lafayette realized the British had made a strategic mistake and despatched phrase to Washington, then within the New York Metropolis space, that if he might reinforce him rapidly, they may bag Cornwallis’ whole pressure.

Because it occurred, Washington had additionally obtained phrase that French Adm. François Joseph Paul de Grasse might convey a fleet north from the West Indies by early September, together with 28 ships and three,000 troopers.

Washington noticed every thing coming collectively and wasted no time shifting most of his troops the 400 miles from New York to Yorktown.


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With the Continentals en route from the north, de Grasse gained a decisive naval victory in opposition to a British fleet on the mouth of the Chesapeake Bay on Sept. 5 that ensured Cornwallis wouldn’t obtain reinforcements by sea.

Washington’s troops and their French allies, a mixed pressure of about 17,000, encircled Yorktown and commenced a siege in late September.

The British raised the white flag on Oct. 17, and the formal give up passed off two days later.

When information of the victory made it as much as Philadelphia 4 days later, the bell atop the Pennsylvania Statehouse — later designated the Liberty Bell and Independence Corridor, respectively — rang out from 3 a.m. till daybreak.

The Continental Congress convened within the constructing early that morning and handed a resolution stating, “Congress will, at two o’clock at the present time, go in precession to the Dutch Lutheran church, and return because of Almighty God, for crowning the allied arms of the USA and France, with success, by the give up of the entire British military beneath the command of Earl of Cornwallis.”

A number of days later, the legislative physique additionally issued a proclamation recounting the outstanding “interpositions of [God’s] Windfall” that had helped convey them to victory and inspiring Individuals to put aside Dec. 13 as a day of “thanksgiving and prayer.”

Yorktown could be the final main battle of the Revolutionary Conflict.

On April 19, 1783, eight years to the day after the primary shot of the battle was fired in Lexington, phrase lastly reached Washington’s troops encamped north of New York that the Individuals and British had come to a preliminary peace settlement.

On Sept. 3, the events signed a proper peace treaty ending the battle.

On the bicentennial of the Battle of Yorktown in 1981, then-President Ronald Reagan commemorated the event with French President François Mitterrand.

“And now, this subject, this ceremony and at the present time maintain a particular that means for individuals the world over, whether or not free of their lives or solely of their desires,” Reagan said. “Not lengthy after the Battle of Yorktown, Lafayette wrote residence to France. ‘Right here,’ he mentioned, ‘humanity has gained its battle. Liberty now has a rustic.’”

Drawing his remarks to an in depth, Reagan noticed, “We reside in a troubled and violent world. However there’s a ethical fiber operating by means of our those who makes us greater than sturdy sufficient to face the exams forward. We will have a look at our previous with pleasure, and our future might be no matter we make it.”

Inexperienced instructed The Western Journal that Individuals can discover inspiration of their history.

“As President Ronald Reagan mentioned, ‘If we neglect what we did, we gained’t know who we’re.’ Nearly each main drawback in American society right this moment has occurred as a result of our civic ignorance allowed false narratives to be accepted as reality,” Inexperienced mentioned.

“Realizing and celebrating our historical past; understanding and celebrating the ideas of liberty in our Declaration and Structure; and understanding and celebrating the unprecedented pressure for good that’s the American Story — that civic literacy and celebration is completely important if we want to save this Constitutional Republic.”

Parts of this text first appeared within the e book “We Hold These Truths” by Randy DeSoto.

Randy DeSoto has written greater than 2,000 articles for The Western Journal since he joined the corporate in 2015. He’s a graduate of West Level and Regent College College of Legislation. He’s the creator of the e book “We Maintain These Truths” and screenwriter of the political documentary “I Need Your Cash.”


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Politics, Leisure, Religion | America Marks 240th Anniversary of Victory That Received Our Freedom

Huynh Nguyen

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