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Jordan Graham Mr. Borrero English 1102 April 26th, 2012 Historical Inquiry Essay: Reflective Letter If I had extra time, I would try to tie my end notes to my concept more. That is the only thing that I am worried about; that my endnotes are not descriptive enough or that they do not connect to my concept well enough. Although I don‟t know what more I would do with the endnotes if I had extra time, because I feel like there isn‟t much more that I can try to explain. Maybe I‟m overthinking it, but this is the first time I‟ve worked with endnotes so I am worried that they aren‟t as formal as they should be. Before you engage with the concept, you must realize it‟s over a period of about 2 years, so I will have to advance in time between the battles. This is pretty evident in the essay; obviously I am not going to describe what the armies did for 2 months while traveling on foot and waiting for supplies. It may seem boring when reading it as a history research paper, but once I began my concept, an intriguing storyline will start to unfold. I think my strong points are my overall knowledge of the historical event. I also feel confident that my concept has quality. The only weak point I can find in my essay is the endnotes. I think they are about as descriptive as they can be, but I feel like you might expect more of a connection.

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Historical Inquiry Paper The Americans had been fighting within its colonies against the British army and their loyalists for 4 years to obtain independence from British rulei. What started as a Patriot rebellion to the tax laws passed by Britain had turned into a full-fledged Revolutionary War. The Americans wanted independence, and the Crown wanted ownership. Through countless skirmishes and battles across the American colonies, Britain had lost just as many men as America. Despite this, the redcoats weren‟t worried about losing; According to Anne Todd, “King George III was not worried about the continental army,” (Todd, 18). After back-and-forth battles in the northern colonies, Sir Henry Clinton, British Commander-in-Chief, ordered his army to travel to the south in hope of new energy to gain control over the war. On the other side of the war, the Patriots were not so confident. Supplies were scarce, and many soldiers weren‟t getting paid on time. Some soldiers were dying of starvation, some were running away. Of the soldiers and Patriots that were still fighting, many were short on guns and ammunition. The war wasn‟t looking so good for George Washington and the Americans and the army was at its weakest, but Washington ordered his army to push into the south to keep fighting. On May 29th, 1780, the continental army faced their first battle in the south. Many thought this would be the turn-around point in the war for the Americans because the British came armed with mostly untrained loyalists, but the aftermath was not American-favored.
ii

18

year old Patriot Jack Daniels (The narrator) was terrified at the sight of more than half of the

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Patriots on the ground, dead or wounded; and the American General Abraham Buford was among them, personally slayed by the current British Commander General Banastre Tarleton, also known as „Bloody Ban‟. Tarleton was in command over the British in the south at the time. “He fought like the Tasmanian devil,”(The Revolution/The War Heads South), says a historian from a video documentary on the massacre. Tarleton rode off into to the backcountry after a full out slaughter. Continental confidence was almost completely gone, after the Patriots had arguably one of the worst losses at the Battle of Waxhawsiii. With the recent victory, the British rulers wanted to keep its momentum going, so they passed a proclamation that said any one in America that is not fully loyal to the Crown, will be treated as a Patriot. This frustrated many of the loyalists, giving them second thoughts. “The Revolution” TV documentary season says “…if you‟re going to push someone off of the fence, you ought to be pretty certain which side of the fence they‟re going to fall on,” (The War Heads South). Many loyalists‟ become eager for more freedom and joined the Patriots sideiv. The delegates to the Continental Congress were well aware of the recent defeat, and sent General Horatio Gates down to the Carolinas to command the army. George Washington insisted that Gates was not the man for the job, but the delegates overruled him. Britain also sent a new commander into the south; General Charles Cornwallis. He had been in Europe after his wife passed away, so he set sail across the Atlantic eager to fight. Gates‟ first battle in the south came on August 16th, 1780. He was met by Cornwallis and his redcoats at a place called Camden. Horatio Gates was confident, and rushed into the battle without much of a plan. Cornwallis fought more conservatively, and sent the continentals retreating very quickly. Gates fled the scene on his horse in embarrassment, and rode so fast and so far, no one saw him againv.

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In the north, Washington had to send someone else to command the war. He could now send who he‟d originally wanted to send, General Nathaniel Greenevi. Greene was younger and had fresher ideas on how to take over the war. As he headed south, he picked up General Daniel Morgan along the way to help him command. The two Generals located the remaining Patriots, and gathered their army to re-think their strategy, in what is present day Charlottevii. Despite the fact that Jack was young and naïve, he was feeling much more confident about the war. Washington was well aware that Tarleton and had settled in Charleston, South Carolina, and that the Crown had sent General Charles Cornwallis overseas to help Tarleton in the war, so he ordered Morgan and Greene to split up from Charlotte and head two different directions into South Carolina. Daniel Morgan headed south west, while Nathaniel Greene went south east. Ironically, Tarleton and Cornwallis did the same thing, with Tarleton heading straight towards Daniel Morganviii. Most of the patriots and continental soldiers in Morgan‟s regiments were scared to fight after such a brutal loss at Waxhaws, followed by the embarrassing loss at Camden. Little did we know, we were headed right for Bloody Ban and the redcoats. On the other hand, Daniel Morgan was confident that he had the plan for success. Morgan and Tarleton finally ran into each other on January 17th, 1781, at a field called Cowpens. Morgan only had 600 men, and over half were untrained Patriot militia, but he used skillful strategy to defeat Tarleton and his men (The War Heads South)ix. Tarleton fled and met back up with Cornwallis, while Morgan and his men caught up with Greene to continue. Because of back injuries, Greene let Morgan go home for the rest of the war from his home in Virginia. Now Nathaniel Greene was on his own, to outsmart the two British commanders in the Carolina backcountry.

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The continental army had just won our first battle in years, but with a shortage of pay, the regiments were still on the verge of revolt. George Washington saw hope, but was frustrated with the lack of effort within his army. He sent orders to all Commanders to shoot any soldiers who tried to protestx. In the eyes of a historian, “Within the revolution, a rebellion grows,” (The End Game). The only way that Washington can bounce back off of the victory at Cowpens, is if he gets reinforcements and supplies for his army. The only means of contacting France for supplies is through mail, which took months back and forth. Meanwhile, Nathaniel Greene and Cornwallis are still in a cat and mouse chase. Greene keeps moving to wear down the British and make time to get reinforcements. His army is faster, and is able to lead Cornwallis from South Carolina, all the way through North Carolina, into Virginia. After 200 miles of travel, Cornwallis gives up, and stops to rethink his plan. In March of 1781, France finally decides to send supplies, and French reinforcements (The End Game)xi. After Greene is resupplied and ready to fight, he crosses back into North Carolina, to seek out Cornwallis and his army. He sets up his army at Guilford Courthouse, and on March 15th, the redcoats arrived and a battle began. Twice as many British died, but Cornwallis got the victory, only because Greene retreated to save as many of his men as he could for future battles. He figured he had done enough damage to the British army, and now they might think they have control and get a little over confident. Henry Clinton, who was staying in New York, ordered Cornwallis to stop attacking and setup in Yorktown. He thought that the Americans would attack again shortly, so he planned for Cornwallis to set up at Yorktown with a more defensive strategy. Washington was aware, so he planned to resupply his army, and then surround Yorktown with his army alongside the French reinforcements. On September 28th, 1781, Washington‟s army began to setup around Yorktown from the east, while the French sent fleets to the Yorktown

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River; there were a total of 3,100 Patriots, 8,000 continental soldiers, and 7,800 French reinforcementsxii. The British were completely outnumbered, but Cornwallis had set up so many lines of defense mechanisms, it took weeks for Washington‟s army to close in on the redcoats. Finally on October 17th, they got close enough to make an attack on the main headquarters of Cornwallis‟ locationxiii. Cornwallis‟ army could not hold up, but he would not surrender himself. Charles Cornwallis was too embarrassed to formally surrender to George Washington, and fled the scene to leave his army to surrender. George Washington and his army had won the battle at Yorktown, which would be the last battle of the war for liberty in Americaxiv. It would take a couple years for Washington to force all of the remaining Loyalists and British out of Wilmington and Charleston, but according to Matthew Moten, “In August (1782), Washington learned that Britain was prepared to grant America independence,”(Moten, 31)

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Works Cited Grainger, John. The Battle of Yorktown, 1781: a reassessment. Woodbridge: Boydell Press, 2005. Moten, Col. Matthew. Between War and Peace. New York. Free Press, 2011. "The End Game." The Revolution. The History Channel. Television, 2006. "The War Heads South." The Revolution. The History Channel. Television, 2006.

Todd, Anne. The Revolutionary War. Mankato, Minn. Capstone Books, 2001.

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i

This is where I choose to begin my concept, because the first 4 years of the war had long gaps between action, and there wasn’t much influence on the outcome of the war. This is the point in the war when both sides realize it is time for someone to take control, and both armies are eager to end the war, leading to all of the action that makes up the period of my event. ii This is when I will introduce the main character of my concept, a Patriot and survivor from the Waxhaw massacre. He will continue to fight as a Patriot all the way to the battle of Yorktown. iii Sets the tone of the concept, and leaves the audience with some suspense. They know that the army is at its worst so obviously something positive must be happening soon, but they don’t know what to expect. iv Gives the audience some positive information on the American’s, to keep them interested and curious as to when the Americans will win a battle. v Surprises the audience with a result that they didn’t suspect, leaving them curious as to what has to happen for the continentals to pull ahead in the war. vi Quickly reassures the audience that the Continentals still have a chance, and leaves them with a lot of confidence knowing that this is the man that George Washington really wants to command. vii After surviving many battles that ended in British victory or retreat, the main character now regroups with the rest of the army. With two fresh commanders, there is a lot more confidence within the concept. This also leaves the audience with some positive suspense, suggesting that the army is in the right position now with two brilliant commanders. viii The main character goes with Daniel Morgan’s group. They are aware that Tarleton is a brutal commander, and he has defeated the Patriots in the last few battles. This leaves the audience anxious to know what happens next. ix With the first American victory in years, the audience finally gets some relief. Tarleton was such a great commander, and Daniel Morgan had the smaller army, so the audience is left with some more positive suspense, knowing that know the army will be twice as good when they regroup with Nathaniel Greene. x The main character is tired, hungry, and unpaid. He is thinking about running away until he hears that any rebels are to be shot, and then he decides to keep moving, with the thought of victory being his only motivation. xi Just before the army was about to lose most of their men due to rebellion, they finally get the supplies they need, and the money to pay their soldiers. The audience is finally rewarded with what they’ve been waiting on, leaving them with confidence in the Americans. The main character gets his pay, and now with fresh supplies, he is motivated to fight. xii Brings the audience into the Battle with complete confidence. xiii The main character fights alongside Nathaniel Greene, and George Washington’s son, who was in his first battle. Washington’s son is killed, and the main character is there to witness it. This allows room for some emotion before the excitement that follows the surrender. By now, the main character is one of Greene’s favorite patriots, and he is among the group who conducts the siege alongside Washington and Greene. xiv After getting the British to surrender, Nathaniel Greene informs Washington that the main character has been a main influence in the past few battles. He is allowed to conduct the surrender alongside his commanders, and later is granted a position in congress by Washington.

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