The Common Man’s Role In The American Revolution

935 words - 4 pages

If you live in the United States, you probably are aware of the American Revolution. Most educated adults in America can name at least on hero of pre-Revolutionary America such as Samuel Adams, John Hancock, Paul Revere and Thomas Jefferson . But to what extent did these few men, credited with our freedom, actually participate in events that lead up to the revolution? How many countless men remained unnamed and unnoticed despite the work they put into the Revolution? These men have often been overlooked in textbooks, despite the fact most of the freedoms we have now are derived from their brave actions. But why did these men get the wheels of a revolution turning? What was the reason they had for their actions, the very ones that led America and Great Britain to begin a fight not only for freedom, but for life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness?

The Boston Tea Party is one of the most explosive and dynamic examples of what affect the common man held on the path to the Revolution. The Tea Party itself was organized by some of the more well-known officials such as John Hancock, but would have had little effect without the men who actually participated in tossing of 90,000 pounds of tea. George Hewes, a prime example of the average man’s affect on the war, had this to say about that fateful night:

The Commander of the division to which I belonged, as soon as soon as we were on board the ship, appointed me to boatswain, and ordered me to go to the captain and demand of him the keys to the hatches and a dozen candles. I made the demand accordingly, and the captain promptly replied, and delivered the articles; but requested me at the same time to do no damage to the ship or the rigging. We then were ordered to by our commander to open the hatches, and take out all the chests of tea and throw them overboard, and we immediately proceeded to execute his orders.; first cutting and splitting the chests with our tomahawks, so as to thoroughly to expose them to the effects of the water. In about three hours from the time we went on board, we thus broken and thrown overboard every tea chest to be found in the ship; while those in other ships were disposing of the tea in the same way, at the same time. We were surrounded by British armed ships, but no attempt as made to resist us. We then quietly retired to our several places of residence, without any conversation with each other or taking any measure to discover who were our associates.

These are the words of George Hewes, a simple shoemaker from Boston, who ended...

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