"Revolutionary America! 1763-1789 April 20-November 3, 2002

A Confederation

photo of exhibit section
In this photo:
DOCUMENTS including a RECEIPT of oats for Continental horses transporting John Hancock's baggage to Boston, 1777, LETTERS and a RESOLUTION regarding trade obstructed by enemy ships, 1776 and 1777.
  On loan from the collection of:
    --Robert G. Oswald
PUBLICATIONS include the Articles Of Confederation printed in French and dedicated to Benjamin Franklin, 1778 - "Recueil des loix constitutives des colonies angloises, confédérées sous la dénomination d'États-Unis de l'Amérique-Septentrionale…" and "Official Letters to the Honorable American Congress…" from George Washington, Commander in Chief, published 1796
    --University of Iowa Main Library, Special Collections, Iowa City IA
MEDALLION honoring Haym Solomon who helped to fund the war
    --Benjamin and Dr. Edgar Cofeld Judaic Museum of Temple Beth Zion, Buffalo NY
MONEY-RELATED ARTIFACTS include CURRENCY, colonial/state paper money 1759-1780, including notes engraved by Benjamin Franklin and Paul Revere; COINS from France, Spain, Britain and Australia 1750-1781, including Spanish silver Piece of Eight 1779; MILITARY SCRIP from the war; and a PURSE, flame-stitched, late 18th century.
    --Andy Ball, Des Moines IA
    --Georgia Historical Society, Savannah GA
    --Robert G. Oswald
ARTWORK (reproduction) depicting the Boston Post Road and a PORTRAIT of Benjamin Franklin wearing a beaver hat

States Rule

A profound distrust of centralized power lay at the heart of the Revolution, and our nation's first constitution, the Articles of Confederation, granted all power to the states. Congress was not allowed - nor did the states dare - to tax citizens because of their earlier protests against the King's taxes! So the colonies were flooded with paper money, effectively "taxing" the population through astronomical prices on goods and services. By the end of the war, it took 600 Continental dollars to equal one Spanish silver dollar, thus the phrase "not worth a Continental."

The United Colonies desperately needed help as Benjamin Franklin set sail for France. His success or failure to secure an alliance would determine the outcome of the Revolution.


A Confederation (You are here)
The Continental Navy
  Father of the Navy--John Paul Jones
Fate of America
  Commander-In-Chief, George Washington
  Official Flag


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