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1d. The Iroquois Tribes
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Technically speaking, "Iroquois" refers to a language rather than a particular tribe. ...

Technically speaking, "Iroquois" refers to a language rather than a particular tribe. In fact, the Iroquois consisted of five tribes prior to European colonization. Their society serves as an outstanding example of political and military organization, complex lifestyle, and an elevated role of women.

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1b. The Anasazi
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In the centuries that led to the year 1000, Europe was emerging ...

In the centuries that led to the year 1000, Europe was emerging from chaos. Tribes roamed the countryside evoking fear from luckless peasants. The grandeur that was Rome had long passed. Across the Atlantic, the North American continent was also inhabited by tribes. The Anasazi managed to build glorious cities in the cliffs of the modern Southwest. Their rise and fall mark one of the greatest stories of pre-Columbian American history.

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1a. Diversity of Native American Groups
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Since 1492, European explorers and settlers have tended to ignore the vast ...

Since 1492, European explorers and settlers have tended to ignore the vast diversity of the people who had previously lived here. It soon became common to lump all such groups under the term "Indian." In the modern American world, we still do. There are certain experiences common to the survivors of these tribes. They all have had their lands compromised in some way and suffered the horrors of reservation life.

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10c. Committees of Correspondence
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Volumes and volumes of written work was emerging in the American colonies ...

Volumes and volumes of written work was emerging in the American colonies on the subject of British policies. Apart from major documents and publications, much writing had been produced as letters, pamphlets, and newspaper editorials. The arguments set forth in this way were at times very convincing. American patriots of the 1770s did not have modern means of communication at their disposal. To spread the power of the written word from town to town and colony to colony, Committees of Correspondence were established.

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10b. Sons and Daughters of Liberty
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They were the ones who were not afraid. They knew instinctively that ...

They were the ones who were not afraid. They knew instinctively that talk and politics alone would not bring an end to British tyranny. They were willing to resort to extralegal means if necessary to end this series of injustices. They were American patriots — northern and southern, young and old, male and female. They were the Sons and Daughters of Liberty.

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10a. Stamp Act Congress
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"No taxation without representation!" was the cry. The colonists were not merely ...

"No taxation without representation!" was the cry. The colonists were not merely griping about the Sugar Act and the Stamp Act. They intended to place actions behind their words. One thing was clear — no colony acting alone could effectively convey a message to the king and Parliament. The appeals to Parliament by the individual legislatures had been ignored. It was James Otis who suggested an intercolonial conference to agree on a united course of action. With that, the Stamp Act Congress convened in New York in October 1765.

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10f. Thomas Paine's Common Sense
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Americans could not break their ties with Britain easily. Despite all the ...

Americans could not break their ties with Britain easily. Despite all the recent hardships, the majority of colonists since birth were reared to believe that England was to be loved and its monarch revered. Yet there were the terrible injustices the colonists could not forget. Americans were divided against themselves. Arguments for independence were growing. Thomas Paine would provide the extra push.

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10e. Second Continental Congress
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Times had taken a sharp turn for the worse. Lexington and Concord ...

Times had taken a sharp turn for the worse. Lexington and Concord had changed everything. When the Redcoats fired into the Boston crowd in 1775, the benefit of the doubt was granted. Now the professional imperial army was attempting to arrest patriot leaders, and minutemen had been killed in their defense. In May 1775, with Redcoats once again storming Boston, the Second Continental Congress convened in Philadelphia.

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10. E Pluribus Unum
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The Declaration of Independence was a product of the Second Continental Congress. ...

The Declaration of Independence was a product of the Second Continental Congress. Two earlier intercolonial conferences had occurred, each building important keystones of colonial unity. The Stamp Act Congress and the First Continental Congress brought the delegates from differing colonies to agreement on a message to send to the king. Each successive Congress brought greater participation. Each time the representatives met, they were more accustomed to compromise. As times grew more desperate, the people at home became more and more willing to trust their national leaders.

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10g. The Declaration of Independence
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The moment had finally come. Far too much bad blood existed between ...

The moment had finally come. Far too much bad blood existed between the colonial leaders and the crown to consider a return to the past. More and more colonists felt deprived by the British not only of their money and their civil liberties, but their lives as well. Bloodshed had begun over a year ago and there seemed little chance of a ceasefire. The radical wing of the Continental Congress was gaining strength with each passing day. It was time for a formal break with mother England. It was time to declare independence.

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10d. First Continental Congress
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In the summer that followed Parliament's attempt to punish Boston, sentiment for ...

In the summer that followed Parliament's attempt to punish Boston, sentiment for the patriot cause increased dramatically. The printing presses at the Committees of Correspondence were churning out volumes.

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11i. Yorktown and the Treaty of Paris
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Although the American military was still enduring losses in 1780, the French ...

Although the American military was still enduring losses in 1780, the French were making a difference. The French navy was disrupting the British blockade. French commanders such as Lafayette and Rochambeau earned the respect and admiration of the American troops.

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11a. American and British Strengths and Weaknesses
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The British seemed unbeatable. During the previous 100 years, the British had ...

The British seemed unbeatable. During the previous 100 years, the British had enjoyed triumph after triumph over nations as powerful as France and Spain. At first glance, the odds were clearly against the Americans. A closer look provides insight into how the underdogs emerged victorious.

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11f. Washington at Valley Forge
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At Valley Forge, there were shortages of everything from food to clothing ...

At Valley Forge, there were shortages of everything from food to clothing to medicine. Washington's men were sick from disease, hunger, and exposure. The Continental Army camped in crude log cabins and endured cold conditions while the Redcoats warmed themselves in colonial homes. The patriots went hungry while the British soldiers ate well.

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11h. The French Alliance
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Nowhere was the victory at Saratoga more noted than in France, which ...

Nowhere was the victory at Saratoga more noted than in France, which had been tentative in its efforts to assist the Americans. France's interest in the American fight for independence stemmed from France's humiliating defeat during the Seven Years War at the hands of its ancient enemy, England.

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11. The American Revolution
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How could the Americans ever hope defeat the mighty British Empire in ...

How could the Americans ever hope defeat the mighty British Empire in a military conflict? Americans faced seemingly impossible obstacles. When the guns fired at Lexington and Concord in 1775, there was not yet even a Continental Army. Those battles were fought by local militias. Few Americans had any military experience, and there was no method of training, supplying, or paying an army.

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11e. The Revolution on the Home Front
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During the war years, those Americans not involved in warfare were doing ...

During the war years, those Americans not involved in warfare were doing their best just trying to survive. Farmers continued to grow food, artisans continued to practice their trades, and merchants attempted to maintain their businesses. Despite efforts to maintain business as usual, the entire social landscape was changed.

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11g. The Battle of Saratoga
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The Battle of Saratoga was the turning point of the Revolutionary War. ...

The Battle of Saratoga was the turning point of the Revolutionary War. The scope of the victory is made clear by a few key facts: On October 17, 1777, 5,895 British and Hessian troops surrendered their arms. General John Burgoyne had lost 86 percent of his expeditionary force that had triumphantly marched into New York from Canada in the early summer of 1777.

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11d. Bunker Hill
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On the night of June 16, 1775, a detail of American troops ...

On the night of June 16, 1775, a detail of American troops acting under orders from Artemas Ward moved out of their camp, carrying picks, shovels, and guns. They entrenched themselves on a rise located on Charleston Peninsula overlooking Boston. Their destination: Bunker Hill.

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