Last Updated 26 Jan 2021

Comparison Between The American Revolutionary War And The 11 States Secession From The Union

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The American Revolutionary War which occurred between 1775 and 1783 a conflict that involved the Thirteen United British colonies in North America and the Kingdom of Great Britain. The thirteen colonies had been established between 1607 and 1733 as a result of the British colonization in North America. The thirteen states desire to overthrow the British rule and to acquire independence motivated the revolutionaries to fight for the control of the Thirteen British Colonies from the British rule.

As a result of the war, the thirteen colonies were able to overthrow the British Empire governance and gain independence to become the United States of America. Self –governing independent states were formed by the colonies, which then became united in order to defend their independence or self-governance against the British rule. At the end of the war, the thirteen colonies were able to break away from the British Empire rule, and they became independent under the 1776 Declaration of Independence.

The secession of the eleven southern states from the US Federal government(Union) resulted to the American Civil War which occurred between 1861 and 1865 . The secession resulted to the formation of the Confederate States of America(Confederacy),which was supported by all the border slave and free states. Due to the difference in opinion between the anti-slavery northern states and the slave-owning southern states, the conflict was triggered. The secession was motivated by the southern states fear of losing control over the federal government to the northern states.

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The southern states also intended to continue with slavery, which the northern states did not support. Both the American Revolutionary War and the secession have certain similarities and differences. Discussion Similarities between the American Revolutionary War and the Eleven Southern States Secession One major similarity between the two historical events is that, one opposing side in the conflicts was motivated by the need to be independent. In the American Revolutionary War, the thirteen colonies under the revolutionaries fought against the British rule in order to be independent.

Before the conflict, the thirteen colonies were part of the British America which was under the British rule under a set of mandates, dominions, and protectorates. During the secession of the eleven southern states, the states fought for their independence from the Union or the then US Federation government. While the desire to be independent was triggered by different reasons for the two events, the major reason of the two conflicts was to seek sovereignity.

The Southern states wanted to be independent so as to practice slavery and continue owning slaves without the influence of the anti-slavery northern states, while the thirteen states wanted their independence from the British unpopular and illegitimate rule. Another similarity between the two is that, the parties that sought to be independent were successful. In the American Revolutionary war, the thirteen states were able to get independence and sovereignty to become the United States of America. The secession of the eleven states on the other hand led to the independence of the states from the Union to form the Confederate of States.

However, the independence of the southern states was short lived and it ended in 1865. In the two events, there was the use of military forces . The American Revolutionary War involved the British, and the revolutionary and the allies forces. The secession ended with the American Civil War, where the Confederacy and Union forces fought. The Differences The two events were different based on the military forces that were involved in the conflicts. The American Revolutionary War had the other outside military forces assisting the two conflicting parties in the war.

However, the secession of southern states and the resulting American Civil War was a conflict between two American forces (the Union and the Confederacy forces), where the Union forces were made up of the northern states, while the confederacy forces were made up of the southern states. In addition, the two events were motivated by different reasons to be independent. While the American Revolutionary War resulted from the thirteen states desire to be independent so as to prevent the British rule imposing of taxes and laws that were unpopular , the eleven Southern States desire to be independent was motivated by the states support of slavery.

Did the Constitution require a Perpetual Union? The Perpetual Union played an important role in the formation of the US Constitution. After defeating the British rule, the governing constitution of the thirteen independent states was the Articles of Confederation and Perpetual Union. This made it possible for the formation of the “United States of America” and the confederation government. The states were therefore able to retain their sovereignity. The establishment of a federal system of governance made it less important for some content of the Articles of Confederation and Perpetual Union to be put in the constitution.

However,the perpetual union constitution paved way for a more powerful and balanced government. The need to have a more powerful government and balance legislative decisions of small and large states motivated the replacement of the Articles of Perpetual Union with the US Constitution . Abraham Lincoln made an inaugural address in March 4, 1861 in relation to the constitution and the Union. According to his speech, Lincoln recognized that the Union was older than the constitution.

The Union had been formed much earlier than the constitution under the Articles of Association in 1774, and the 1776 Declaration of Independence continued the union. After getting their sovereignity, the Thirteen States had accepted to be in the Perpetual Union in 1778 under the Articles of Confederation. Lincoln through his inaugural address acknowledged the importance of the Perpetual Union by stating that the 1787 move to establish and ordain a US Constitution was to improve the earlier formed union into a perfect union.


The American Revolutionary War and the secession of the eleven southern states are two historical events that have contributed greatly to the American history . The activities that took place during the two events have continued to mould the American society up to date. These two events were very beneficial to the American people because they managed to obtain their independence from the British rule, and the social injustices (slavery) fought against. Though many people lost their lives during the conflicts, the American people continue to enjoy the benefits that resulted from the conflicts up to date.

Works Cited Chambers, John. The Oxford Companion to American Military History. Oxford University Press, 1999 Heidler, David. Encyclopedia of the American Civil War: A Political, Social, and Military History (2002), 1591–98 Higginbotham, Don. The War of American Independence: Military Attitudes, Policies, and Practice, 1763–1789. Northeastern University Press, 1983 Kenneth, Stampp. "The Concept of a Perpetual Union," The Journal of American History, Vol. 65, No. 1 (Jun. , 1978), pp. 5-33 Weintraub, Stanley. Iron Tears; America's Battle for Freedom, Britain's Quagmire: 1775- 1783. New York: Free Press, 2005

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