George Washington and His Role in American History

George Washington’s name is a foundation of American history. His figure serves as political, military and even moral leader for different generations of American people. He is the first president of the U.S., who shaped and implemented the basic principles of this state. His presidency lasted from 1789 till 1787, and these years became crucial for entire world. He headed four key battles that provided the success of American forces. This paper is aimed to explore the significance of George Washington, which is rooted in his successful battles and policies during the Revolutionary war.

George Washington’s main contribution is successful commandership, as he made his army win the war. As soon as the Revolutionary War started, Washington became commander –in-chief of the Continental army. The American Revolutionary War 1775-1783 was an armed conflict between Great Britain and its thirteen colonies located in the North America. The war began with Americans’ refusal to pay unconstitutional taxes imposed by the British Parliament. A variety of protests and boycotts headed by the American patriots demonstrated absence of Americans’ trust to British authorities. The most famous boycott is the Boston Tea Party that became the cause for further opposition.  The Royal punish the protestors by removing self-government and closing the port of Boston. Nevertheless, these troubles have accelerated the protestors’ enthusiasm instead of suppressing it. To coordinate resistance, the protestors from different colonies created a Continental Congress. In addition, this Congress was aimed to seize power effectively and to make military decisions. Soon, in 1775 there was a fighting between British regulars and Massachusetts militia. In spring of 1776 the Congress appointed General George Washington to head militia units in Boston. Though the war was supervised by the Congress, Washington was given sufficient trust and responsibilities such as command of the new Continental Army. The above-mentioned events are the origins and the core of the Revolutionary War and may be considered its ‘first phase’.


The Battle at Lexington and Concord fought on April the 19, 1775 is the first military engagement of the Americans in the Revolutionary War. It is imparted because it begun a series of further military conflicts and made the Revolution approach to its military phase.  British regulars were appointed to capture and to destroy the supplies that were stored at Concord. However, the Patriot colonists knew about this plans, so that they removed the supplies to safety. The battle was spent on the open territory, and the British troops did not implement quick and secret operation, though some of the supplies were destroyed.

The next important battle is Bunker Hill fought in the June of 1775.  The British troops were believed to win it, which proved that there will not be quick and predictable outcome of the war. The Royal government believed that this was the last battle that will end with the victory of British troops, however, this battle made the opposition even harder. This battle is important because it showed that the war would be long and complicated, and that American troops are able to resist traditional British warfare

The Battle of Long Island fought on August, the 27th, 1776 was headed by George Washington. He realized the strategic importance of New York ,therefore he directed his troops there.  He waited for the arrival of the British troops on the west of long Island. This battle begun on the 22nd of April, and its outcomes were negative for the American forces. When Washington joined the war, he did not blame the commanders of the troops, who lost the battle. He was cool, confident and calm because he oversaw his unfavorable position. His troops were on the open territory, so that he had to withdraw them as soon as possible. This situation does not demonstrate bravery and heroism, but rather calm and well-considered decision-making process of the politicians.

The Battle of Princeton of 1776 proved that Washington was a great leader capable of right decision-making in the critical time. His troops were not in advanced condition to fight appropriately. Nevertheless, he ,managed to inspire the soldiers and to ask them to stay one month long. Washington was capable of communicating great ideas to people, so that people wanted to implement the ideas and follow the interests of their country despite any difficulties. That was the time when patriotism was accepted and supported, and when the value of own independent state was articulated.

The Battle of Bennington fought in 1777, August may be considered a sufficient victory of American forces because it led to great losses of the British troops. For example, total losses of British and German troops were reported to have around 200 dead and 700 captured, while American troops lose 30 soldiers. During this battle the French forces were brought on the site of the Colonists.

The Battle of Germantown headed by George Washington and Nathanael Greene was fought in October 1777. This time American troops were told to march in complete darkness to approach the hostile army when it is not ready to fight. But the progress was lower than expected – it was difficult to establish communication between columns. Despite the difficulties, the American troops managed to attack the British army. Thanks to well-considered strategies of George Washington, the loses of American troops were not great.

The Battle of Yorktown that took place on the 9th of October, 1781 was the last major battle.  I think that these victory was connected with well-considered cooperation of the French and American armies since 1776. Different armies were given different responsibilities, and the mutual work’s results were successful.

I think that George Washington won the Revolutionary War because he applied a winning strategy. It means that the strategy included signal victories such as at the Battle of Yorktown and the Battle of Trenton. The victories in critical periods of war create the points of power, which directed the further events. Moreover, it is important to consider Washington’s views of civilians’ participation at war. He believed that American people should not only pay taxes and give their lives in blood-splitting battles. Instead, he believed that the principle of civilian control on the military issues of the U.S. should be supported.

In conclusion, George Washington was a responsible politicians, whose messages to civilians were accepted and supported. His well-considered strategies made it possible to win the entire Revolutionary War via victories in signal battles. The analysis of the above-mentioned battles shows that the most important thing is combination of inspiring patriotic ideas with cool and sophisticated strategies in critical periods.