The American Revolution: A World War, an exhibition at the National Museum of American History and a companion book of the same name, highlight the degree to which the American Revolution became a global war, in which the Americans relied heavily on support from other nations, most notably France and Spain. The war was fought across five continents and three oceans, with over 200,000 French and Spanish fighting against Britain, almost as many as the Americans. Over 90% of all the arms used by the Americans came from overseas, as well as $30 billion in foreign aid. These international dimensions of the war ultimately determined its outcome and led to the establishment of the United States of America.
In a panel discussion, four scholars will discuss how the American alliance with France shaped both the conduct of the war both in North America and around the world, as well as the complex peace negotiations that ultimately ended it.
Speakers at the event will include:
- Olivier Chaline, Professor of Early Modern History at Sorbonne Université (Paris) and author of La France et l’indépendance américaine
- David J. Hancock, Professor of History at the University of Michigan and author of a forthcoming biography of William Fitzmaurice, second Earl of Shelburne, principal British negotiator of the Peace of Paris on 1783 between Britain and the United States.
- David K. Allison, Senior Scholar at the National Museum of American History as well and curator of The American Revolution: A World War exhibition;
- Larrie D. Ferreiro, Professor of History and Engineering at George Mason University in Virginia and author of Brothers at Arms: American Independence and the Men of France and Spain Who Saved It.
The discussion will be introduced by the French ambassador to the U.S., Gérard Araud and the Director of the National Museum of American History, Anthea M. Hartig, and will be followed by a reception.
This event is organized by the National Museum of American History and the Cultural Services of the French Embassy and is made possible thanks to the support of the French-American Cultural Foundation.