Appraising the American Revolution

Archive Report

Bicentennial Urge for Reflection

Questions Raised by Study of Revolution

The aspect of the bicentennial celebration that is likely to have the most lasting consequences is the stimulus it has given to a popular exploration of the nation's past. While most of the festivities and ceremonies have centered on the 200th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence, the scope of the backward look at the nation's beginnings actually has been much wider. It embraces not only the American Revolution, but the crucial preceding years that gave rise to the demand for independence and the following years when the survival and good health of the young nation became assured.

The attention now focusing on the nation's early history raises or revives some haunting questions: What did the American ...

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