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ABH Travel Tip
To get a great idea of how the decades before and after the Declaration of Independence was written take a trip to the two northeastern cities that were at the crux of much of the action; Boston and Philadelphia. From the actions prior to the revolution to those of the drafting of the Constitution. One quick note; it took an awful long time to get our governmental system worked out, and the long and arduous road of the American Revolution and subsequent formation of the government is an amazing journey all Americans show know and visit.
Above: Engraving of Faneuil Hall in Boston. Courtesy Library of Congress. Right: Fort Necessity, French and Indian War.
Pre-Revolution Timeline - The 1700s
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January 26, 1700 - The Cascadia earthquake, located off the coast of the Pacific Northwest along the Juan de Fuca plate, occurs. The magnitude 9 (8.7 to 9.2) quake caused a tsunami to hit the coast of Japan.
October 9, 1701 - An Act for Liberty to Erect a Collegiate School is passed by the Colony of Saybrook (Connecticutt). It would become Yale University.
April 17, 1702 - Royal Colony of New Jersey established by Queen Anne from separate provinces of East New Jersey and West New Jersey.
February 29, 1704 - During Queen Anne's War, Deerfield, Massachusetts is attacked by French and Indian forces with fifty-six killed and over one hundred captured and carried off.
April 24, 1704 - The first regular newspaper publishes its initial edition in Boston, the News-Letter. It was begun by John Campbell, the postmaster.
October 5, 1710 - British Troops begin a nine day siege on the French fort, Port Royal in Nova Scotia, before capturing it for the crown in the Queen-Anne's War 1701-1713.
April 6, 1712 - New York slave revolt results in six suicides and twenty-one executions.
April 11, 1713 - The Queen Anne's War ends with the French
signing a treaty in the series of Treaties of Utrecht to give Nova Scotia to the British.
November 19, 1716 - The first theater in the colonies to open for business in Williamsburg, Virginia, when contract is signed to build theater.
May 7, 1718 - French colonists under the governor of the French colony of Louisiana, Jean-Baptiste le Moyne, Sieur de Bienvile, with the French Mississippi Company found the City of New Orleans, named after the regent of France, Philip II, the Duke of Orleans. It is located on the lands of the Chitimacha tribe.
November 22, 1718 - The English pirate Blackbeard is killed off the coast of Ocracoke Island in North Carolina by the crew of Lieutenant Robert Maynard of HMS.
June 16, 1720 - The Villasur expedition of Spanish troops leaves Mexico on a mission to control the increasing presence of the French in the Great Plains. It would end with a defeat by the Pawnee on August 14 near the Loup and Platte Rivers, near
March 29, 1721 - Adrien de Pauger arrives in New Orleans to design plans for the city and French Quarter throughout the year.
July 25, 1722 - Declaration of war occurs in Dummer's War after skirmishes earlier in the year between New England colonists and the Wabanaki Confederacy, backed by New France. Lasted three years until December 15, 1725.
July 25, 1729 - Lord proprietors sells out their interests in North Carolina to British Crown, establishing North Carolina as a Crown Colony.
October 2, 1729 - Benjamin Franklin buys an interest in the Pennsylvania Gazette, founded one year earlier by Samuel Keimer.
February 22, 1732 - George Washington is born in Westmoreland County, Virginia.
April 21, 1732 - Province of Georgia corporate charter granted to General James Oglethorpe by British King George II with original western border of the Pacific Ocean and settlers who had been imprisoned for their debts.
December 28, 1732 - Poor Richard's Almanac is published for the first of its twenty-six annual editions by Benjamin Franklin in Philadelphia. It would sell as many as 10,000 copies per year.
August 4, 1735 - Freedom of the Press became recognized in New York after the trial of John Peter Zenger, who had been accused of libeling the British Government in his Weekly Journal. Zenger was acquitted on that date.
May 1738 - Anglican minister George Whitefield arrives for his first of seven visits to North America and becomes the predominant preacher in the First Great Awakening movement throughout the colonies.
July 16, 1741 - Mount Saint Elias, Alaska is sited by Danish Captain Vitas Bering under the employment of the Russians.
March 18, 1741 - Twenty-nine years after the first revolt of slaves in New York, a second uprising occurs. Seventeen slaves were hanged after the revolt, thirteen burned, and seventy deported.
1741 - Thomas Faunce, the Plymouth Colony's town record
keeper, identifies the exact rock that lore and stories from his
father had stated was the landing rock.
May 23, 1744 - First battle of King George's War begins with raid by New French against the British port of Canso. Four year conflict against northern British colonies takes heavy toll after battles in Maine, at Fort Massachusetts, and in Saratoga, New York.
May 17, 1749 - Georgia Trustess petition parliament to overturn the original ban against slavery in Oglethorpe's colony. It would be lifted two years later.
June 15, 1752 - Benjamin Franklin invents the lightning rod after earlier in the year proving that lightning was electricity by flying a kite in a thunderstorm.
May 28, 1754 - George Washington and his troops attack Fort
Duquesne, an initial action of the French and Indian War
between the English and French which began when French
forces built and occupied Fort Duquesne in Pittsburgh and did
not heed warnings to leave Virginia territory.
July 3, 1754 - Battle of Fort Necessity occurs in southwestern Pennsylvania in a small fort built for supplies. That battle of the French and Indian War ends in a peace document, allowing Washington's withdrawal and surrender of the fort.
July 25, 1755 - Decision to relocate Acadian French from Nova Scotia is made. British relocate 11,500 Acadian French to other British colonies and France over the next eight years; some later settle in Louisiana.
August 3-9, 1757 - French capture Fort William Henry (New York) after a six day siege. This is the battle described in James Fenimore Cooper's book, the Last of the Mohicans.
November 13, 1762 - France cedes Louisiana to Spain. This
started a contentious period of thirty-eight years of Spanish rule before Spain returned Louisiana back to France.
February 10, 1763 - French and Indian War ends with peace
treaty that cedes Canada and the American midwest to English.
This signals and effectively tightens the control of Great Britain's colonial administration of North America.
April 6, 1764 - The Sugar Act places a duty on various
commodities, including lumber, food, molasses, and rum in the
October 7, 1765 - After the establishment of the Stamp Act by
the British Government on March 22, which required revenue stamps, taxes, to pay for British troops, nine American colonies hold a Stamp Act Congress in New York and adopted a Declaration of Rights against taxation without representation.
March 18, 1766 - Stamp Act is repealed.
November 20, 1767 - Additional levies are put on goods in American colonies by the British Government when the Townshend Acts are enacted, including levies on glass, painter's lead, paper, and tea. All would be repealed in three years, except for the tax on tea.
July 14, 1769 - Jose de Galvez sends Spanish missionaries into California to begin the establishment of missions at San Diego and Monterey. There would be twenty-one missions established and maintained over the next sixty-four years of the mission period in Spanish California history.
History Photo Bomb
Benjamin Franklin. Image courtesy National Archives.
Lithograph of the levee at New Orleans, 1884, William A. Walker, Currier and Ives. Courtesy Library of Congress.
America's Best History where we take a look at the timeline of American History and the historic sites and national parks that hold that history within their lands.
Photos courtesy of the Library of Congress, National Archives, National Park Service, americasbesthistory.com & its licensors.