The American Revolutionary War (1775-1783) began as a war between the Kingdom of Great Britain and 13 British colonies in North America, and ended in a global war between several European great powers.
Beginning of the War
The war was the result of the political American Revolution, which galvanized around the dispute between the Parliament of Great Britain and colonists opposed to the Stamp Act of 1765, which the Americans protested as unconstitutional. The Parliament insisted on its right to tax colonists; the Americans claimed their rights as Englishmen to no taxation without representation.
The Americans formed a unifying Continental Congress and a shadow government in each colony. The American boycott of British tea led to the Boston Tea Party in 1773. London responded by ending self government in Massachusetts and putting it under the control of the army with General Thomas Gage as governor. In April of 1775, Gage sent a contingent of troops out of Boston to seize rebel arms.
Local militia, known as minutemen, confronted the British troops and nearly destroyed the British column. The Battles of Lexington and Concord ignited the war. Any chance of a compromise ended when the colonies declared independence and formed a new nation, the United States of America on July 4, 1776.