1772 1773 1774 - 1775 - 1776 1777 1778
1740s 1750s 1760s - 1770s - 1780s 1790s 1800s
Events of 1775
The American Revolution begins this year, with the first military engagement being the April 19 Battles of Lexington and Concord on the day after Paul Revere's now-legendary ride. The Second Continental Congress takes various steps toward organizing an American government, appointing George Washington commander-in-chief (June 14), Benjamin Franklin postmaster general (July 26) and creating a Continental Navy (October 13) and a Marine force (November 10) as landing troops for it, but as yet the 13 colonies have not declared independence, and both the British (June 12) and American (July 15) governments makealthough on July 6, Congress issues the Declaration of the Causes and Necessity of Taking Up Arms and on August 23, King George III of England declares the American colonies in rebellion, announcing it to iament on November 10. Two months into the colonial siege of Boston, at the Battle of Bunker Hill, just north of Boston, British forces on June 17 are victorious, but only after severe casualties and after Colonial forces run out of ammunition, Fort Ticonderoga is taken by American forces in New York Colony's northern frontier, and American forces unsuccessfully invade Canada, with an attack on Montreal defeated by British forces on November 13 and an attack on Quebec repulsed December 31.
Human knowledge and mastery over nature advances when James Watt builds a successful prototype of a steam engine, and a scientific expedition continues as Captain James Cook claims the South Georgia and South Sandwich Islands in the south Atlantic Ocean for Britain. Nature's power over humanity is dramatically demonstrated when the Independence Hurricane (August 29 – September 13) devastates the east coast of North America, killing 4,170, and when, on the western side of the North American continent, Tseax Cone erupts in the future British Columbia, as well as when a smallpox epidemic begins in New England. Smallpox was then cured by scientist Edward Jenner.
- January 17 – James Cook takes possession of South Georgia for Britain.
- February 9 -American Revolution: The Parliament of Great Britain declares Massachusetts in rebellion.
- February 15 – Pope Pius VI succeeds Pope Clement XIV as the 250th pope.
- March 23 – American Revolution: Patrick Henry, a delegate to the Second Virginia Convention after the Virginia House of Burgesses was disbanded by the Royal Governor, delivers his "Give me Liberty, or give me Death!" speech at St. John's Church in Richmond, Virginia.
- April 18 – American Revolution: Paul Revere and William Dawes, instructed by Dr. Joseph Warren, ride from Boston to Lexington to warn John Hancock and Sam Adams that British forces are coming to take them prisoner and to seize colonial weapons and ammunition in Concord.
- April 19 – American Revolution: Hostility between Britain and its American colonies explodes into bloodshed at the Battles of Lexington and Concord on the 19th, which ignites the American Revolution.
- May 10
- American Revolution: The Second Continental Congress meets, elects John Hancock president, raises the Continental Army under George Washington as commander and authorizes the colonies to adopt their own constitutions.
- American Revolution: Ethan Allen and Benedict Arnold, leading the Green Mountain Boys of Vermont, capture Fort Ticonderoga.
- May 17 – American Revolution: The Continental Congress bans trade with Canada.
- June 12 – American Revolution: The British forces offer a pardon to all colonists who lay down their arms.
- June 12 – U.S. Merchant Marine (no central administration).
- June 14 – American Revolution: The Continental Congress names George Washington as commander of the Continental Army.
- June 16 – Post of Chief Engineer of the Continental Army created.
- June 17 – American Revolution: Two months into the colonial siege of Boston, British open fire on Breed's Hill on Charles Town Peninsula. After 3 charges, the British take the hill in the misnamed Battle of Bunker Hill.
- June 19 – Post of Commanding General was created by the Continental Congress.
- July 3 – American Revolution: George Washington takes command of the 17,000-man Continental Army at Cambridge.
- July 5 – American Revolution: The Continental Congress sends the Olive Branch Petition, hoping for a reconciliation.
- July 6 – American Revolution: The Continental Congress issues Declaration of the Causes and Necessity of Taking Up Arms, which contains the words: "Our cause is just. Our union is perfect... being with one mind resolved to die freemen rather than to live slaves...".
- July 26 – The Second Continental Congress appoints Benjamin Franklin to be the first Postmaster General of what later becomes the United States Post Office Department.
- August 21 – American Revolution – Battle of Fort St. Jean: American rebels launch an invasion of Canada.
- August 23 – American Revolution: Refusing to even look at the Olive Branch Petition, King George issues a Proclamation of Rebellion against the American colonies.
- August 29 – September 12 – The Independence Hurricane from South Carolina to Nova Scotia kills 4,170, mostly fishermen and sailors.
- September 25 – American Revolution – Battle of Montreal: Patriot revolutionary forces under Maj. Ethan Allen attack Montreal, commanded by British General Guy Carleton. Allen's forces are defeated, and Allen himself is captured and held on British ships until he is later released.
- October – The Sayre Plotters attempt to kidnap George III of the United Kingdom.
- October 13 – American Revolution: The Continental Congress orders the establishment of the Continental Navy (later the United States Navy).
- November – American Revolution: Colonel Richard Richardson's South Carolina revolutionaries march through Ninety Six District in what becomes known as the Snow Campaign, effectively ending all major support for the Loyalist cause in the backcountry of South Carolina.
- November 10 – American Revolution: The Continental Congress passes a resolution creating the Continental Marines to serve as landing troops for the recently created Continental Navy (the Marines are disbanded at end of the war in April 1783 but reformed on July 11, 1798 as the United States Marine Corps).
- November 13 – American Revolution – Battle of Montreal: American forces under Brigadier General Richard Montgomery capture Montreal. British General Guy Carleton escapes to Quebec.
- October 26 – American Revolution: George III announces to Parliament that the American colonies are in an uprising and must be dealt with accordingly.
- December 5 – American Revolution: Henry Knox begins his journey to Cambridge, Massachusetts with the artillery that has been captured from Fort Ticonderoga.
- December 31 – American Revolution: British forces repulse an attack by Continental Army generals Richard Montgomery and Benedict Arnold at Quebec.