Welcome to All About the Revolution. Our topics will range from historical insights to updates on plans for the next generation of the American Revolution Museum at Yorktown. Our first post derives from an exercise among Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation staff to comment on these questions: “What is the legacy of the American Revolution? What did it ultimately achieve? Why is it relevant today?” We encourage your thoughts and reactions to each post.
What is the meaning of the Revolution?
Above all, the American Revolution created new possibilities. Millions of people got to rethink who they were and what they could achieve in a world where the old boundaries limiting thought and behavior could be challenged. Just as the English settlers who came to Jamestown chose to confront a physical world whose boundaries they could not know, the people who made the American Revolution chose to create a future for themselves that was full of opportunities and perils, a future whose boundaries they could not predict.
The American Revolution was not an event, it was a process, and the process continues to change people’s lives today. The wave of possibilities created by the Revolution is self-sustaining, and every generation must confront it. The ideas that fueled the Revolution can be accepted or rejected, but they cannot be ignored.