Browse Exhibits (10 total)
This exhibit explores the world of Bristol, England, in the decades leading up to the American Revolution—what contemporaries would have called civil war or the American Rebellion. A seaport deeply embedded in transatlantic trade networks as well as English manufacturing and trade, Bristol's economic growth throughout the eighteenth century often relied on stimulus from Britain's North American colonies. This exhibit examines the relationship between Bristol's economy and culture, seeking to understand how its investments and perceived centrality in global culture and contemporary political discourse shaped its reactions to American independence.
The city of Albany, New York is dynamic frontier city, connected to New York City, the British Colonies, and Europe by the Hudson River. It's people are led by a wealthy, landed Dutch upperclass. It raises its voice with other cities in the northern colonies demanding to be heard by the British government, despite their relative lack of revenue creation for the empire. The city also served as an interface between the British Colonies and Indian country.
During the American Revolution, Gibraltar suffered, struggled, and endured under the weight of Siege. From 1779 to 1783, combined French and Spanish forces blockaded Gibraltar, with the British navy periodically relieving the city. Gibraltar had a long military history stretching back long before the American Revolution; however, the Siege of 1779-1783 was rooted in the War of Spanish Succession at the turn of the 18th century. Britain had captured Gibraltar from the Spanish in 1704, and since then it had been a coveted and contentious piece of land. The American Revolution provided Spain with the opportunity to right the wrong of 1704, and quickly moved to reclaim Gibraltar through Siege after joining the war on France’s side. Maps made of Gibraltar from shortly before the Siege reflect this emphasis placed on the military side of Gibraltar. For the inhabitants of Gibraltar, the Great Siege was a combination of monotonous, agonized inaction and waiting and sudden bursts of military…
During and in the lead-up to the Revolution, Newbern, North Carolina represented a meeting point between the North and the South. A provincial town with river access to the Atlantic, Newbern was an important trading port in North Carolina, published and circulated the transatlantic North Carolina Gazette, and was particularly well-connected to both Charleston and Philadelphia. This exhibit first considers Newbern's access-points to London and important city centers in the American colonies, examining a map highlighting the North Carolinian colonial government and topography, and newspaper spreads including both domestic and international content. The second iteration reflects on North Carolina's relationship to slavery, using the Edenton Tea Party to reflect on how wealthy North Carolinians outwardly exuded refinement, but that refinement was qualified and subverted by prevalence of slave advirtisements. A third interation considers John Wright Stanly as reflective of North…
This exhibit focuses on Halifax, Nova Scotia and its relationship to the American Revolutionary War. Nova Scotia was a naval base and a seaport used by the British during the revolution and it remained loyal to Britain during and after the war. This exhibit follows the comings and goings of people and objects in and around Halifax. The camp chest in this exhibit demonstrates the importance of the British military in the area and its role within the Americas as a base for British troops. Rose Fortune, represents one of the many freed slaves that traveled to Nova Scotia from various parts of America as Loyalists. Fortune, like many other freed slaves, lived a difficult life as a free slave in Nova Scotia, but ultimately became an icon in Canadian history. Although Halifax seems like an outside player in the war, it was an integral part of the Loyalist side of the Revolution.
This exhibit by Bennett Capozzi explores British renderings and perceptions of West Africa in the 18th century, specifically focusing on the Senegal colony. This outpost between the Senegal and Gambia rivers was not only an important trading post, but also a gateway to a large network of inland tribes, and by extension, slaves. This exhibit focuses mainly on the early years of British possession, after they captured Senegal from France in 1758 during the Seven Years' War. The acquisition was an exciting development for British slave traders, planters, geographers, and intellectuals who each laid claim to the colony for their own economic and educational purposes. This exhibit also investigates the absences in the historical record, namely the exclusion of native voices in these texts. This was a period of intense debate over the humanity and legitimacy of slavery, which makes the human experience in a slave entrepot like Senegal particularly relevant.
This Exhibit focuses on Germantown Pennsylvania. Included in this exhibit is a map by Thomas Jeffreys drawn in 1776, and an article from the Manufacturing Society in Philadelphia which provides an understanding of the trade routes in the colonies and Germantown's place within those networks. In addition, this exhibit includes many letters from revolutionary figures, such as Joseph Galloway, George Washington This exhibit contains three essays on Germantow. One essay examines Germantown as a economic and social hub. Another essay explores Germantown as site of battle in 1777 during the Battle of Germantown. Finally, a third essay discusses Joseph Galloway, a famous loyalist, who voiced the concerns of loyalists living under British occupation in Philadelphia. Through these essays, I hope to show Germantown's importance throughout the revolutionary period as a haven for both patriot and loyalist activity. Furthermore, imbued with both patriot and loyalist leanings, Germantown, I…
Newport was a colonial city situation on Aquidneck island in the colony of Rhode Island. Newport was a coastal city and featured an important port which dominated much of the city's landscape. Newport, Rhode Island was also the center of the Battle of Rhode Island in August, 1778. The battle ended in a modest British victory and was one of the earliest examples of cooperation between the Americans and the French during the American War of Independence. Newport was also the hometown to William Ellery, a merchnt-turned-lawyer who served a delegate for Rhode Island in Continental Congress. Although Ellery was a signatory to the Declaration of Independence, he gain very little notoriety outside of his hometown. This exhibit explores the significance of Newport and its impact on the war as a whole through primary source documents.
A look at Charleston, South Carolina during the American Revolutionary War through the lens of a map of the South Carolina Province intended for a government council in 1773, and a British proclamation demanding loyalty from citizens of Charleston in 1780
Jamaica, Britain’s wealthiest colony in the 18th century, heavily relied on Britain’s security apparatus, especially as other empires loomed in the background and slaves threatened to revolt. Britain also offered an enormous market for Jamaica’s precious commodity, sugar. Nevertheless, the Jamaican economy was also dependent on the North American colonies for raw materials, such as lumber and fish to feed the enormous slave population. It is then not surprising that Jamaica took the middle path in disputes between the colonies and Britain. In sum, Jamaica and the middle path it embraced illustrates the international dimension of the American Revolution.