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Showing 141–150 of 1508 results for Cost of Revolution Online Exhibit

When Women Lost the Vote: A Revolutionary Story: Christiana Kitts

A woman of Swedish descent, Christiana Kitts was born in the 1740s. She voted in December 1800 and died the following year, leaving her estate to her children and grandchildren.
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Finding Freedom: Andrew - United States Census, 1850

Andrew Ferguson moved to Indiana (which became a state in 1816) after the Revolutionary War. The 1850 United States Census, shown here, documents Ferguson’s residence in Monroe County. Ferguson and his wife Jane (also known as Jenny; married in 1844) are listed near the bottom of the page. “B” in the column to the right of their age and gender stands for Black, their race. Andrew Ferguson is listed as being 95 years old (or born in about 1755), but he had previously claimed that he was born in about 1765. 

National Archives and Records Administration, Washington, DC/Ancestry.com

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When Women Lost the Vote: A Revolutionary Story: How Did the Vote Expand?: New Jersey’s Revolutionary Decade

New Jersey became the first and only state to legally enfranchise women in 1790, when state legislatures reformed the New Jersey State Constitution’s election law to include the words “he or she.” It proclaimed what the New Jersey Constitution of 1776 had only implied: that propertied women could vote. This statute was neither accidental nor insignificant, and it changed the voting landscape in the state. Women voting was just one part of a growing national and international movement among some women to increase women’s rights, a movement inspired by Revolutionary-era ideology in both America and Europe. And while New Jersey blazed the trail in the new nation, it expressed a tide rising in other states as well, like Massachusetts, where Abigail Adams endorsed women voting in New Jersey.
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The Davenport Letters: February 15, 1783

The winter of 1782 dragged on as James Davenport was encamped with the Continental Army at New Windsor, New York. This particular letter hints at the religious education that Davenport must have received as a child in Dorchester. Like many young Americans, he would have learned to read and write with the Bible as a primary learning and teaching tool. Two of his references – to a coming “jubilee” in which the soldiers would become free and to making bricks without straw under strict taskmasters – would have been familiar to most people as both common idioms and ideas rooted in Christian tradition. And both references helped Davenport convey the increasing resentment he felt at his situation, stuck in an army waiting for peace. “We hope to get free from our Slaveng soon,” he wrote.

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Online Exhibits

With our online exhibits, including When Women Lost the Vote and Cost of Revolution, the Museum continues to uncover and share compelling stories about the diverse people and complex events that sparked America’s ongoing experiment.
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The Davenport Letters: October 23, 1782

Just days later after writing his August 1782 letter from West Point, James Davenport travelled down the Hudson with 8,000 other soldiers to a new encampment at Verplanck’s Point. Washington used this move to think through how an amphibious assault on New York might work. And as you can explore in the Museum’s Picturing Washington’s Army interactive, he used the encampment there to impress French allies. The Continental Army was encamped in a long line, and soldiers built elaborate structures, gateways, and arbors. Just down the line from the 8th Massachusetts, a sergeant in another Massachusetts regiment wrote in his journal that “We have here a fine encampment which will furnish the public with a curious map someday or other.”

Davenport made no mention of this activity besides noting that on October 23, he was encamped on “Lunts Creek” a few miles below “Peeksville” (today’s Dickey Creek feeds into Lunts Cove just outside Verplanck, New York, down the Hudson from Peekskill). More important to him was the absence of news from home, and he opened this letter with an amusing dialogue between himself and his pen, perhaps inspired by the popular fictional “object narratives” of this period. 

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Finding Freedom: Deborah - George Washington’s Letter to Lund Washington

On April 30, 1781, General George Washington wrote this letter to Lund Washington, his cousin and farm manager, to express his disgust with Lund Washington’s decision to supply the British when they came to Mount Vernon earlier that month. In General Washington’s absence, Lund Washington convinced the British to spare the plantation from being destroyed by providing them with food and supplies. General Washington wrote in response, “It would have been a less painful circumstance to me, to have heard…they had burnt my House, & laid the Plantation in Ruins.” Lund Washington’s negotiation saved the property, but General Washington felt his honor had been tarnished by giving in to the enemy. The departure of 17 enslaved people, including Deborah, only worsened Washington’s embarrassment. Although the British left Washington’s plantation untouched, they burned many neighboring properties.

George Washington Papers, Manuscript Division, Library of Congress, Washington, DC

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Finding Freedom: Andrew - Revolutionary War Pension Application

On August 15, 1838, Andrew Ferguson told the story of his military service during the Revolutionary War at the courthouse in Monroe County, Indiana. This document records his story and the testimony of people who could verify Ferguson’s claims. Ferguson told his story in order to apply for a veteran’s pension (financial assistance) from the United States Government. Six years earlier, in 1832, Congress passed a law that allowed men who had served at least two years in the Continental army, militia, or navy during the war to apply for lifetime pensions. Following the application requirements, Andrew Ferguson appeared before his local court and described his military service under oath. Ferguson described himself as a “colored man” from Virginia who had served at battles such as King’s Mountain, Guilford Courthouse, and Eutaw Springs. His application was successful, and he began to receive payments the following year.

National Archives and Records Administration, Washington, DC/Fold3.com

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Finding Freedom: Deborah - Marquis de Lafayette’s Letter to George Washington

General George Washington received this confidential letter from the Marquis de Lafayette a few weeks after a British ship sailed up the Potomac River and took supplies from Mount Vernon, Washington’s home in Virginia. Lafayette informed General Washington that several enslaved people had escaped from Mount Vernon to join the British in search of their freedom. He also noted that Lund Washington, the general’s cousin and farm manager, had boarded the enemy’s vessel and offered to provide the British with supplies to prevent Mount Vernon from being burned down. Lafayette warned General Washington that this might make his neighbors upset because they had attempted to resist the British and their homes were burned as a result. On April 30, 1781, General Washington wrote a letter to Lund Washington to criticize his cousin’s decision to give supplies to the British. General Washington felt his honor had been tarnished by giving in to the enemy.

George Washington Papers, Manuscript Division, Library of Congress, Washington, DC

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© National Museums NI Collection Ulster Museum

Art and Artifacts in Cost of Revolution

Discover the art and artifacts that brought Richard St. George's story to life in Cost of Revolution.
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