Did George Washington Trigger The American Revolution?
By James Donahue
George Washington has long been portrayed in school history books as a great American hero; the
father of our nation. In a strange way, Washington had a lot more to do with launching the Revolutionary War than most people
The early English settlers established the 13 original colonies along the East Coast of North America
while the French government posted its flag on other territories farther inland. There was a big business in fur trade established
as far inland as the Great Lakes.
Those English colonies governed themselves at first even though they remained subjects of the English
Crown. As more and more settlers arrived, the English began to clear more land and expand farms beyond established colony
borders. This lead to border disputes with the French as well as the Native American tribes. To quell these disputes, King
George III deployed soldiers to maintain what became an uneasy peace with the French and also protect the colonists from Indian
This arrangement kept the peace for a while. But one day in 1754, a young lieutenant colonel in
the British army, led his men in an unprovoked attack on French troops at Jumenville Glen. The attack left 10 French soldiers
dead, including their commander, and sparked the seven-year French and Indian war (1756-63).
The lieutenant colonel that launched that attack was none other than George Washington.
The French were so provoked by the raid that they set about to drive the English colonists out
of North America. They secured help from some of the Indian tribes that also objected to the way the new colonists were encroaching
on their territories. To protect the colonists, King George sent an army of ten thousand men.
In the midst of that skirmish, Washington at one point got himself captured by the French.
It was because of that seven year war that the king levied a tax on goods and services provided
the colonists. They money was needed to help pay off a large debt that was being borne by the citizens of Britain.
It was over the attempts by King George to tax the colonists to help pay for the cost of colonial
protection that the seeds of revolution were born. In the end, the colonists chose Washington to lead the new Continental
Army in what became the American Revolution and later spread to be a world war as the French joined the battle against England
and came to the aid of the colonial army.
A study of that war in the colonies reveals that Washington’s top military advisors were
the ones who came up with the strategies that led to the defeat of the British Army. The wisdom of Washington was shown in
the fact that he listened to them, and that he chose to surround himself with these kinds of soldiers.
Even at that, had it not been for the complete blundering of the top British generals, especially
during the early days of the revolution, the colonists would probably have lost the war almost before it began.
Washington and all of the other signers of the Declaration of Independence came close to being
hung as traitors. Instead, they went down in history as the fathers of the nation.