Lesson 9
The Second Continental Congress & the Hessians

In May of 1775, the Second Continental Congress met in Philadelphia. Many thought the fighting was only a New England War. They thought it wouldn't reach the other colonies. Congress voted to ask each of the Thirteen Colonies to give war supplies and troops. They also voted to ask France to help. George Washington was voted Commander-in-Chief of the new army. Washington was chosen because he was a trained soldier. He had fought in the French and Indian War. Also Washington was from Virginia in the South. Many thought this would bring the South into the war.

Events that were taking Place

  • The American army invaded Canada and tried to take Quebec but failed.

  • The British navy burned the port of Falmouth, Maine.

  • King George hired soldiers from Germany called Hessians. The British paid the Prince of Hesse $500,000 a year plus $35 for each Hessian killed and $12 for each wounded. Unfortunately, the money was not given to the soldiers. It was spent to help Germany's economy and even to build elaborate palaces.

    hesse2.jpg (26964 bytes)

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