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• American Revolution
John Burgoyne
William Howe
Benedict Arnold
Horatio Gates


Definition: Turning point of the Revolutionary War in that it convinced France to enter the war on the side of the Americans. British General John Burgoyne came up with a brilliant plan to take all of New York away from the Americans. His three-pronged attack called for a meeting of three forces at Saratoga. Burgoyne would advance south from Canada and plan to meet at Albany with Generals Barry St. Leger and William Howe. St. Leger was to move east from Fort Oswego, on Lake Onratio; and Howe was to march north from Virginia. This was a brilliant plan, Burgoyne thought, and he hoped to crush the American Northern Army. Trouble was, it didn't work. Howe never got the message and went to Philadelphia instead. Burgoyne himself was stopped by American General Benedict Arnold at Saratoga. St. Leger made it to Albany and had it all to himself. At the Battle of Saratoga (which was really a handful of battles), Burgoyne surrendered almost his entire army to General Horatio Gates on October 17, 1777. The American victory convinced France that America really did have a chance of winning. Soon thereafter, French money and supplies (and eventually, troops and ships) were making their way to America. The end had begun.

Related Resources:
The American Victory at Saratoga
It was the turning point of the war, many historians say. But why? Follow British troops as they march toward what they hope is a great victory but instead turns into a smashing defeat.

The American Revolutionary War
This fun, illustrated article tells you all you need to know about this famous war, from an easy-to-understand point of view.

Saratoga Battle Map

Elsewhere on the Web:
More on Saratoga
Read more on this battle known as the turning point of the war.

The Revolutionary War: Causes and Major Battles
This site has it all!

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