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Jada Wick

English 1 Honors
Mrs. Penegar
5th Block
1-18-19

The Sacrifices for Freedom

It is often not recognized as an important moment in the history of the U.S., but, the

Siege of Yorktown was the most significant win in the Revolutionary War. It also left a

long-lasting impact on the United States and shifted the tides. The American and French took to

a three-week lasting battle against Britain, ultimately leading to a tragic British loss. The siege

lasted from ​September 28, 1781 through October 19, 1781.​ This loss made for a big triumph for

the U.S., being that the battle ended the American Revolution, influenced the signing of the

Treaty of Paris, and changed the course of American history as a whole.

In the year of 1781, America was already on edge with the British. There was a war

taking place at the time, which was the American Revolution. People sought independence from

British hold, therefore they banned together and fought with all of their might and power in order

to break free and form their own nation, without the help of the British. This, in due time, would

lead to America’s self rule.

The patriots, being lead by general George Washington, were rebelling against Britain,

taking part in battle after battle in order to gain the independence they wished for so terribly. The

patriots were up against a large amount of British armies and they were more than down on their

luck. The congress had little to no money in order to pay for the battles against British forces,

and Britain had most control of the south (though they did soon slowly began to lose their grip

on the carolinas). It was up to the patriots to turn things around for themselves. Thankfully, word

had come to George Washington about a patriotic win in West Florida at the Battle of Pensacola.
This was considered a stroke of luck for the patriots, and their perseverance was evident. He was

then informed that General Cornwallis had taken a defensive position at Yorktown, successfully

seizing the city, as well as Gloucester. This was when opportunity and prosperity for

independence would begin to take a rise. It was time for the battle to begin.

General Washington ordered his patriotic army of 5,000 men and Marquis de Lafayette to

block all British forces from escaping. In the second paragraph of Battle of Yorktown Begins on

www.History.com​, the text states, “​He ordered Marquis de Lafayette and an American army of

5,000 troops to block Cornwallis’ escape from Yorktown by land while the French naval fleet

blocked the British escape by sea. By September 28, Washington had completely encircled

Cornwallis and Yorktown with the combined forces of Continental and French troops.​” ​This

shows that the patriots effectively began to take a stand. The Americans and the French began to

bombard the British over and over, their attempts having successful results each and every time.

The author of the article titled Battle of Yorktown begins on on ​www.History.com​ asserts in the

text that, “After three weeks of non-stop bombardment, both day and night, from cannon and

artillery, Cornwallis surrendered to Washington in the field at Yorktown on October 17, 1781,

effectively ending the War for Independence.” ​General Cornwallis plead illness, and ultimately

ended up not arriving at the place of surrender.

The overall significance of the battle was long lasting and greater than people believe.

Due to the hard earned success the patriots managed to attain, all major battles from the

American Revolution ended. Before that, though, British forces still continued to put up a fight,

despite the fact Americans were the victorious ones. After much convincing, Thomas Jefferson

and James May were both able to get the British to recognize American independence as far as
the Mississippi River by signing the Treaty of Paris in 1783, Americans in turn honoring all

debts owed to British merchants from before the war took place. Within the text of The

American Revolution on , it states, “​In the ​1783 TREATY OF PARIS​ the British agreed to

recognize American independence as far west as the Mississippi River. Americans agreed to

honor debts owed to British merchants from before the war and to stop persecuting British

Loyalists.” And in the text of the article titled American Revolution, The Treaty of Paris on the

website ​www.ducksters.com​, it says, The treaty was negotiated in the city of Paris, ​France​.

That's where it gets its name. There were three important Americans in France to negotiate the

treaty for the United States: ​John Adams​, ​Benjamin Franklin​, and John Jay. David Hartley, a

member of the British Parliament, represented the British and King George III. The document

was signed at the Hotel d'York, where David Hartley was staying.” This proves that the Battle of

Yorktown definitely influenced the signing of the Treaty of Paris, which, in turn, allowed them

to gain their independence. ​And so, the War for Independence had finally come to an end.

Freedom and peace were both attained at last. This shows that the battle was crucial and had a

lasting effect on history as a whole.

Overall, it is clear that the Siege of Yorktown was one of the most important and

rewarding battles in the history of America, and left a great impact on the carolinas, as well as

the rest of the country. Since the signing of the Treaty of Paris, ending of the American

Revolution, and the change of History all-together, the country has gained independence, making

us now one of the strongest nations in history. We thank all of the sacrifices those who fought for

us gave up, because they are the reason we have the freedom granted upon us. Such a blessing to

live in America, the land of the free and the home of the brave.