Our Sacred Honor

An in-depth exploration of the American Revolution.  
By Mr. Jones, American History 9th period.

Washington crosses the Delaware River to surprise the British in Trenton, NJ. Christmas Eve, 1775.

Top Ten List

#10 - John Adams: Fierce Boston patriot who defended British soldiers in court after the Boston Massacre.  His contributions to the Revolution include encouraging Massachusetts to accept the Declaration of Independence. Adams would later be elected the 2nd President of the United States.

#9 - Boston, Massachusetts: The hotbed of patriot activity; home to John Adams and Patrick Henry, the Sons of Liberty, and location of early skirmishes and battles of the Revolution.

#8 - Marquis de Lafayette: French aristocrat and military commander who became close friends with Washington and Jefferson.  Helped command French forces who allied with the patriots to defeat British General Lord Cornwallis at Yorktown, VA in 1781.

#7 - The Constitution of the United States of America: The framework for the greatest democracy in the world was drafted in Philadelphia, PA by 56 politicians and statesmen who desired to create a constitutional republic in which the people retained popular sovereignty.  The Constitution is still "alive" today.

#6 - Valley Forge, winter 1777: The winter in Valley Forge, PA, helped the Continental Army to develop grit and perseverance.  Though many soldiers died, many onlookers believed these troops could win the war after making it through such a tough winter.

#5 - Thomas Jefferson: This Virginian wrote the Declaration of Independence, the world's most influential written document and the formal declaration of war against England.  Jefferson would later be elected the 3rd President of the United States.

#4 - James Madison: A statesman from Virginia who earned the nickname "Father of the Constitution" for his ideas during the 1787 Constitutional Convention.  Madison would later be elected the 4th President of the United States.

#3 - King George III of England: The tyrannical villain of the Revolution.  His greed for wealth, power, and influence led to the revolt of many colonists.  Eventually, King George would see his most precious colony break free from the mother nation.

#2 - Thomas Paine:  His 1776 pamphlet Common Sense helped sway American public opinion against England, turning many loyalists into patriots.  The pamphlet was written in common language so all could understand.

#1 - George Washington: Before being unanimously elected as the first President of the United States, General Washington commanded the Continental Army to a major upset victory over the British in the Revolutionary War.  Without Washington, we may not have an America of our own.

King George III The Tyrant


Parliament passes the Stamp Act to help recoup the cost of the French and Indian War; vastly opposed in the colonies.

5 March 1770
Boston Massacre claims the lives of five patriots.

January 1776
Thomas Paine publishes Common Sense and the sentiments of Americans towards the King change; many loyalists become patriots.

18 April 1776
Paul Revere's Midnight Ride to warn colonists of the approaching redcoats; Revere rode from Boston to Lexington and Concord

May 1776
Second Continental Congress meets in Philadelphia

of 4 July 1776
Declaration of Independence drafted and signed.

October 1781
Patriot and French forces secure the surrender of Lord Cornwallis at Yorktown, VA.

The Treaty of Paris is completed, ending the Revolution and establishing the United States as a free and sovereign nation.

Daniel Shay and other poor farmers in Massachusetts lead a rebellion against the local law; reveals the inadequacies of the Articles of Confederation.

17 September 1787
Final draft of the Constitution is completed.

Biography of Patrick Henry
"Give Me Liberty or Give Me Death!"

Patrick Henry (May 29, 1736 – June 6, 1799) was an American attorney, planter and politician who became known as an orator during the movement for independence in Virginia in the 1770s. A Founding Father, he served as the first and sixth post-colonial Governor of Virginia, from 1776 to 1779 and from 1784 to 1786.

Henry led the opposition to the Stamp Act of 1765 and is remembered for his "Give me liberty, or give me death!" speech. Along with Samuel Adams and Thomas Paine, he is regarded as one of the most influential champions of Republicanism and an invested promoter of the American Revolution and its fight for independence.

After the Revolution, Henry was a leader of the anti-federalists in Virginia. He opposed the United States Constitution, fearing that it endangered the rights of the States as well as the freedoms of individuals; he helped gain adoption of the Bill of Rights. By 1798 however, he supported President John Adams and the Federalists; he denounced passage of the Virginia and Kentucky Resolutions as he feared the social unrest and widespread executions that had followed the increasing radicalism of the French Revolution.

As a married man, Henry was an expanding landowner. By 1779, along with his cousin and her husband, Henry owned a 10,000-acre (40 km2) plantation known by the name of Leatherwood. He is also recorded to have purchased up to 78 slaves. In 1794 he and his wife retired to Red Hill Plantation, which had 520-acre (2.1 km2) in Charlotte County that was also a functioning tobacco plantation.


Yesterday on March 5, an incident took place on King Street between British regulars and Americans.  The colonists rallied to protest against the unfavorable Stamp Act imposed by Parliament, and regulars were dispatched to keep the peace.

They did anything but that.

Amid ongoing tense relations between the population and the soldiers, a mob formed around a British sentry, who was subjected to verbal abuse and harassment. He was eventually supported by eight additional soldiers, who were subjected to verbal threats and thrown objects. They fired into the crowd, without orders, instantly killing three people and wounding others. Two more people died later of wounds sustained in the incident.

Lawyer John Adams is set to defend the soldiers in court next week on the charge of murder.

Patriot Hero Benjamin Franklin.
1709 - 1791

Benjamin Franklin died from a heart at his home in Philadelphia on April 17, 1790, at age 84. Approximately 20,000 people attended his funeral. He was interred in Christ Church Burial Ground in Philadelphia. In 1728, aged 22, Franklin wrote what he hoped would be his own epitaph:

The Body of B. Franklin, Printer; like the Cover of an old Book, Its Contents torn out, And stript of its Lettering and Gilding, Lies here, Food for Worms. But the Work shall not be wholly lost; For it will, as he believ'd, appear once more, In a new & more perfect Edition, Corrected and amended By the Author.

Revolutionary Peach Pie

pie pastry for a double crust (see recipe below)
6 peaches, preferably organic
½ cup sugar

1. Preheat oven to 425°F. Roll out the dough for the bottom crust and line a pie pan with it. Remove stems from peaches, and peel if using nonorganic fruit. Place four unpitted peaches in the pan. Cut the remaining two peaches in half and remove their pits. Place these sections between the other peaches (cut the halves into smaller pieces if that will help fill out the pie).

2. Sprinkle the sugar over the peaches, followed by two tablespoons of water.

3. Roll out the other ball of dough and carefully place it over the filling. Crimp the dough’s edges to seal, and cut a few small slits in the crust with a knife or fork (if you haven’t already gashed holes in your crust trying to lay it over the giant peach mounds).

4. Bake the pie for 10 minutes at 425°F, then reduce heat to 350°F and bake another 40-45 minutes. Let rest an hour or so before serving.

By the Numbers

13 colonies
1 tyrannical king
168 years of colonization
5 men dead in the streets of Boston
342 crates of tea dumped into Boston Harbor
1 if by land, 2 if by sea
8 colonists dead at Lexington & Concord
1000 British dead at the Battle of Bunker Hill
6 years of fighting
1 Constitution