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Welcome to the website of the Massachusetts Society of the Sons of the American Revolution. The society is an educational, non-profit that seeks to maintain and extend the institutions of American freedom, and a respect for our national symbols and American citizenship. We do this by perpetuating the stories of courage, sacrifice, and triumph of those who achieved our independence to inspire succeeding generations.

HIST 116: The American Revolution

HIST 116: The American Revolution

Professor Joanne Freeman
Yale University


This Yale College course, taught on campus twice per week for 50 minutes, was recorded for Open Yale Courses in Spring 2010 and is available free online.

The American Revolution entailed some remarkable transformations–converting British colonists into American revolutionaries, and a cluster of colonies into a confederation of states with a common cause–but it was far more complex and enduring than the fighting of a war. As John Adams put it, “The Revolution was in the Minds of the people… before a drop of blood was drawn at Lexington”–and it continued long past America’s victory at Yorktown. This course will examine the Revolution from this broad perspective, tracing the participants’ shifting sense of themselves as British subjects, colonial settlers, revolutionaries, and Americans.

Joanne Freeman is Professor of History at Yale University. Specializing in the political culture of revolutionary and early national America, she received her Ph.D. from the University of Virginia. She is the author of Affairs of Honor: National Politics in the New Republic, which won the Best Book prize from the Society for Historians of the Early American Republic, and the editor of Alexander Hamilton: Writings. Her current project is a study of congressional violence and the culture of the U. S. Congress from the 1820s through the Civil War.

Video and audio elements from this course are also available on YouTube and Itunes.

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