The American Revolutionary War, from 1775 to 1783, was predominantly fought between two groups of people – the Patriots and the Loyalists. In general, both the Patriots and Loyalists were culturally identical, such as speaking the same language, wearing the same clothes, and going to the New World with the same goal – to seek a better life. Then why did the two groups fight against each other during the war? Initially, when the First Continental Congress met and protested against Great Britain’s rule, the colonists had no intention to become independent from the crown but only wanted their rights to be recognized. After the French and Indian War, British enforcement gradually became stricter through acts that were placed on the colonies, which eventually led to the recognition and division between the Patriots and Loyalists. Those who favored the idea of independence and wanted to be free from British rule were known as the Patriots, whereas those who supported the British and remained loyal to the crown were known as the Loyalists. Overall, the different characteristics that made up the Patriots and Loyalists, the individual support towards their respective sides of the war, and each of their motivations and beliefs greatly impacted the ultimate outcome of the Revolution.
Although the Patriots and Loyalists were culturally similar within the colonies, there were many additional characteristics that defined the differences between the two. The Patriots were generally wealthy, better educated, and merchants who didn’t rely on trade with England. They were capable of financially supporting themselves by having the “plantation owners trade [their produce] within the colonies and the merchants using smuggling among other countries besides Great Britain” (Beverly). Though the Patriots didn’t have to depend on the English to maintain their economy, they suffered greatly because Parliament enacted many indirect taxes, and then later on creating direct taxes such as...
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