American Revolutionary Soldiers
This article contains fast facts and information about the American Revolutionary Soldiers. Who were the American Revolutionary Soldiers who fought during the American War of Independence? What did the uniforms of different American Revolutionary Soldiers look like? Definition of American Revolutionary Soldiers: The American Revolutionary Soldiers came from the 13 colonies that became the United States of America. There was no standing army at the outbreak of the war - each colony had relied upon the local militia, made up of part time citizen-soldiers, for local defense. The outbreak of the war meant that the Revolutionaries needed to organize forces of American Revolutionary Soldiers to fight in the conflict against the British.
American Revolutionary Soldiers
The Continental Army was formed after the outbreak of the American Revolutionary War, established by a resolution of the Continental Congress on June 14, 1775. The Continental Army, under the command of George Washington , was created to coordinate the military efforts of the Thirteen Colonies in their revolt against British rule. The American Revolutionary Soldiers had no experience, their were no uniforms, there were no regiments and there were limited firearms. They were faced with fighting the British who had many advantages over the Americans:
- Great Britain had a well established standing army - the Americans did not
- Great Britain had a well established navy - the Americans did not
- Great Britain had ample quantities of powder, guns, and clothing - the Americans did not
- The British soldiers (the Redcoats) were well disciplined and trained - the Americans were not, they had not had the time to co-ordinate their American Revolutionary Soldiers
The men who would make up the force American Revolutionary Soldiers were facing difficult times. However, they did have some advantages over the British - they knew the country and could make us of this knowledge using them for defensive tactics. The American Revolutionary Soldiers also had many great leaders and commanders including Washington, Greene, Arnold, Morgan, and Wayne.
Enlistment of American Revolutionary Soldiers
The American Revolutionary Soldiers can from all walks of life. The Continental Congress raised the first 10 companies of Continental troops based on a one-year enlistment. Riflemen and Sharpshooters from Pennsylvania, Maryland, Delaware and Virginia were used as light infantry and later became the 1st Continental Regiment in 1776. The enlistment period was later extended to 3 years. The American Revolutionary Soldiers in the Continental Army were citizens who had volunteered to serve in the army and were paid but were generally motivated by their strong sense of Patriotism.
Pictures of the Uniforms worn by American Revolutionary Soldiers
In 1775 the Continental Congress adopted brown as the official color for uniforms in 1775 but there was a shortage of brown cloth, so some regiments dressed their soldiers in blue and gray. Congress did not adopt a Continental uniform until 1779 but the American Revolutionary Soldiers attempted to have clothing similar to the others in the company or regiment. The militia, including the Minutemen, had no uniform at all. Instead, they dressed in hunting shirts. Consequently the pictures and paintings of the American Revolutionary Soldiers came in a variety of colors, shades and different styles as can be seen in the following pictures.
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|Continental Soldier ||Continental Army Soldiers ||American Soldier 1776 |
American Revolutionary Soldiers - Cockades
The absence of uniforms caused problems for the Continental Army as the American Revolutionary Soldiers were not able to easily identify their commanders on the battlefield. The decision was made to introduce the use of cockades to distinguish the leaders. A cockade was a wide, ornate, knot of ribbon or a rosette worn on the hat. The colors of the cockades indicated the rank of the commander to the American Revolutionary Soldiers. The first colors used as cockades were as follows:
- Field Officers: Pink or Red
- Captains: Buff or Yellow
- Junior Officers: Green
The Continental Army then adopted the black cockade which changed to black and white when France became an ally as a mark of the French-American alliance. The black-and-white cockade thus became known as the "Union Cockade".
|Union Cockade ||Washington wearing Black Cockade |