Stamp Act
required colonists to purchase special stamped paper for every legal document, newspaper, or pamphlet
Samuel Adams
founder of the Sons of Liberty
Townshend Acts
indirect taxes on imported materials like glass, lead, and paint
Boston Massare
small battle between a few colonists and British guards (resulted in the death of Crispus Attucks)
Committees of Correspondence
used to communicate with other colonies about threats to American liberties
Boston Tea Party
colonists revolted by dressing up as Indians and dumping 18,000 pounds of tea into the Boston Harbor
King George III
king of England
Intolerable Acts
one law shut down the Boston Harbor, another ordered quartering to be legal
Marial Law
rule imposed by the military
civilian soldiers
Second Continental Congress
a group that discussed and represented the people
Olive Branch Petition
urged an immediate return to the former harmony between Britain and the colonies
Common Sense
a pamphlet, written by Thomas Paine, that explained the people's complaints with King George III
Thomas Jefferson
a virginia lawyer who was chosen to express the commitee's points in the Declaration of Independence
Declaration of Independence
document that described the people's rights
people that were supporters of Independence
those who opposed independence and remained loyal to the Crown
Valley Forge
the site of the Continental Army's camp during the winter of 1777-1778
location where the Continental Army attacked and killed 30 Hessians and held 918 captive
where General Burgoyne surrendered his battered army to General Gates on October 17, 1777
rising prices
location of the British surrender on October 19, 1781
Marquis de Lafayette
french military leader that helped out with the wars in the US
Friedrich von Steuben
a prussian military drillmaster that made the Continental Army into a stronger fighting force
Treaty of Paris
confirmed U.S. independence and set the boundaries of the new nation
a government in which citizens rule through their elected representatives
Articles of Confederation
set of laws in which state governments were supreme in some matters while the national government was supreme in other matters
Land Ordinance of 1785
established a plan for surveying the land
Northwest Ordinance of 1787
provided a precedure for dividing the land into territories
Shay's Rebellion
the protest of farmers because of their debt problems
James Madison
called a meeting to discuss issues of interstate trade
Great Compromise
offered a large two-house Congress to satisfy both small and big states
Three Fifths Compromise
called for three-fifths of a state's slaves to be counted as population
a system of government that divided power between national government and state governments
Legislative Branch
branch of government that makes laws
Executive Branch
branch of government that carrys out laws
Judicial Branch
branch of government that interprets the law
Checks and Balances
governmental system that prevents one branch from dominating the others
Electoral College
group of electors chosen by the states that would cast ballots for the candidates
official approval
supporters of the Constitution
group who did not support the Constitution because they opposed having such a strong central government
Bill of Rights
a list of amendments, or rights, that were guaranteed to citizens of the U.S.