The American Revolution: A Timeline


  • Parliament passes the five “intolerable acts”
  • Late May: Maryland meeting in Annapolis passes resolves in support of Boston
  • September 5-October 26: First Continental Congress (CC) meets
  • September 17: Suffolk Resolves tempers but passes by CC
  • October 14: CC passes “Declaration of Rights and Resolves”
  • October 24: CC forms Continental Association (nonimportation, nonconsumption, nonexportation)
  • October 25: CC petitions King for protection against Parliament
  • October 26: Congress adjourns permanently–if King answers petition
  • December: John Adams writes as “Novanglus”


  • February 9: Parliament declares Massachusetts in a “state of rebellion”
  • March 22: Parliament rejects Burke’s plan of reconciliation
  • April 19: Battles of Lexington and Concord
  • May 10: American militias take Ft. Ticonderoga and Crown Point
  • May 10: Second Continental Congress (SCC) meets; declares united colonies on defensive
  • May 26: SCC again claims defensive
  • May 29: SCC invites Canadian provinces to join America
  • May 31: Mecklenburg County, NC, declares itself independent from UK
  • June 15: SCC forms Continental Army; names Washington as commander
  • June 17: Brits “win” the Battle of Bunker Hill
  • July 6: SCC passes “Olive Branch Petition” for King; passes Dickinson’s Declaration of the Causes and Necessity of Taking Up Arms”
  • August 2: SCC adjourns
  • August 23: King rejects “Olive Branch Petition”; proclaims Americans as traitors to empire; colonists must either “submit or triumph.”  
  • September 12: SCC meets; Georgia finally sends delegates; all 13 represented
  • November 16: Burke again calls for reconciliation
  • November 29: SCC forms secret committee to treat with other nations
  • December 6: SCC declares complete independence from Parliament; claims loyalty to King
  • December 22: Parliament declares all N.A. Colonies beyond protection of empire; prohibits all trade with colonies