Sources Cooperative associations have been organized throughout history to carry out many different activities, often in response to economic and social stress. Cooperative organizations in the United States appeared very early, reflecting both the European heritage of early settlers and the basic need for cooperative solutions to rural conditions. European Influences The development of U. During this period many small, home-based enterprises disappeared, forcing workers to move to cities where they faced harsh working conditions and low wages.
Support in the Domestic Realm[ edit ] Spinning in the colonial kitchen Homespun Movement[ edit ] Women in the era of the Revolution were responsible for managing the household.
Connected to these activities, women worked in the Homespun Movement. Instead of wearing or purchasing clothing made of imported British materials, Patriot women continued a long tradition of weaving, and spun their own cloth to make clothing for their families.
Wearing "clothes of your own make and spinning," or "homespun," was a peaceful way of expressing support for the patriot cause. Nonimportation and nonconsumption became major weapons in the arsenal of the American resistance movement against British taxation without representation.
InChristopher Gadsden made a direct appeal to colonial women, saying that "our political salvation, at this crisis, depends altogether upon the strictest economy, that the women could, with propriety, have the principal management thereof.
Women refused to purchase British manufactured goods for use in their homes. The tea boycott, for example, was a relatively mild way for a woman to identify herself and her household as part of the patriot war effort. While the Boston Tea Party of is the most widely recognized manifestation of this boycott, it is important to note that for years previous to that explosive action, Patriot women had been refusing to consume that very same British product as a political statement.
The Edenton Tea Party represented one of the first coordinated and publicized political actions by women in the colonies.
Fifty-one women in EdentonNorth Carolina signed an agreement officially agreeing to boycott tea and other British products and sent it to British newspapers. Even though these "non-consumption boycotts" depended on national policy formulated by menit was women who enacted them in the household spheres in which they reigned.
During the Revolution, buying American products became a patriotic gesture. In addition, frugality a lauded feminine virtue before the years of the revolution likewise became a political statement as households were asked to contribute to the wartime efforts.
The women of Philadelphia collected funds to assist in the war effort, which Martha Washington then took directly to her husband, General George Washington.
Poet Hannah Griffitts wrote verses urging Pennsylvania women to boycott British goods. Both women published their work anonymously. Women were among the food rioters who conducted over 30 raids on storehouses between andseizing goods from merchants they considered unreasonable.
In Boston, a group of women marched down to a warehouse where a merchant was holding coffee that he refused to sell. They accosted the owner, forced him to turn over his keys to the warehouse, and "confiscated" the coffee.
Known as camp followersthese women followed the Continental Army, serving the soldiers and officers as washerwomen, cooks, nurses, seamstresses, supply scavengers, and occasionally as soldiers and spies.
The women that followed the army were at times referred to as "necessary nuisances" and "baggage" by commanding officers, but at other times were widely praised. Prostitutes were also present, but they were a worrisome presence to military leaders particularly because of the possible spread of venereal diseases.
Unlike poorer women present in the army camps, the value of these well-to-do women to the army was symbolic or spiritual, rather than practical.
Their presence was a declaration that everyone made sacrifices for the war cause. Women joined up with army regiments for various reasons: Army units in areas hard hit by war or in enemy-occupied territory housed more women than those in safe areas, most likely because women in battle-ridden areas sought the protection of the Continental Army.
Devotion to following a man was admired, while those who seemed enticed by the enlistment bounty warranted the scorn of enlisted men.
Anne Bailey was discharged, fined, and put in jail for two weeks. Anne Smith was condemned for her attempt to join the army in order to secure the enlistment fee. Deborah Champion,  Harriet Prudence Patterson Hall,  and Lydia Darragh  all managed to sneak important information past the British to their American compatriot.
With British rights westward acknowledged back in Europe, most Native people faced increasing encroachment by settlers and a greater military presence of British troops. As the American Revolutionary War drew near, many of these soldiers ultimately relocated in coastal cities like New York and Boston, as British strategy called for greater control there, leaving the western frontier to ballooning numbers of conflicts between white settlers and Native Americans.
In addition, byfamine and disease had become widespread problems in and among native communities. Several historians claim that contact with whites resulted in the displacement of women from their traditional spheres, both as a result of war related upheavals and specific American policy after the war.
Post-Revolutionary guidelines called for the "civilization" of Native peoples, and which meant turning a population from a hunting-based society to an agricultural one, despite the fact that almost all Native American societies did practice agriculture—the women farmed.
Thus, the American government instead encouraged Native women to take up spinning and weaving and attempted to force men to farm, reversing gender roles and causing severe social problems that ran contrary to Native cultural mores.
Iroquois women[ edit ] The Revolution particularly devastated the Iroquois. The nations of the Iroquois confederacy had initially endeavored to remain neutral in the American Revolutionary War.
Ultimately, however, some of the tribes were persuaded to join the British front by Sir William Johnson. As a result of this alliance, the American Major General John Sullivan and his soldiers burned and completely destroyed about forty Iroquois towns in what is now upstate New York, displacing thousands of Iroquois inhabitants.
This campaign obliterated hundreds of acres of crops and orchards, which had largely been the domain of the agricultural women, and served to kill thousands of Iroquois, both outright and through the ensuing starvation. Catawba women[ edit ] Before the American Revolution, relations between the Catawba Nation and European settlers were cautiously hostile, as neither side was interested in starting a war.
Tensions led to conflict, particularly over land. While settlers believed in private property and put up fences to mark their lands, Catawbas believed that no person could claim land forever, and tore the fences down.Free summary and analysis of Part 2 in Benjamin Franklin's The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin that won't make you snore.
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