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Women in the American Revolution

Research paper samples on women in the American Revolution show that women played an important role in our nation’s struggle with Great Britain over independence.   Women in the American Revolution research papers note that there were actual instances of women engaging in combat.  

  • Rebecca Motte, of South Carolina, shot flaming arrows at the roof of her own British occupied plantation house in order to burn it down
  • Nancy Hart of Georgia killed six Tories when they attempted to occupy her home
  • Women in the American RevolutionDeborah Gannet disguised herself as a man and actually served in a regiment of the Continental Army.

But these cases were exceptions.  Women's History in America was, for the most part, constrained by their traditionally determined gender roles.  They served their country well, but we must not bastardize history by taking a few anecdotes of women in combat and constructing a romantic fiction that would exaggerate their role as actual soldiers.  Their contribution of our founding women was more on the peripheral of combat.  They served as spies, messengers, and, chiefly, as suppliers in the military’s logistical chain.  Research papers on women in the Revolutionary War quotes a contemporary observer as saying that the road leading from Cambridge to Boston was lined with houses in which every woman was putting together supplies for the army.

Due emphasis must be given to the role that socially imposed gender roles played in constraining the scope of the role that women were allowed to play in promoting the war effort.  In the revolutionary war women did much.  They aspired to do more, but they lived in a world that was legally, politically, and economically patriarchal to a degree that we moderns have trouble understanding. Thomas Jefferson, one of the most forward and progressive men of his time, in speaking of his daughter Martha’s pregnancies, was wont to refer to child bearing as a “woman’s trade”.  The attainment of social acceptance for a woman of the revolutionary era was, with very few exceptions, a function of her capacity to bear children and manage the home.

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