King George III & The American Revolution: Lesson for Kids

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  • 0:04 King George III
  • 0:44 George III & the Revolution
  • 2:24 George III & the War
  • 3:10 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Elizabeth Foster

Elizabeth has been involved with tutoring since high school and has a B.A. in Classics.

You probably know about George Washington and the other famous Americans who fought in the Revolutionary War, but do you know about the people on the other side of the war? In this lesson, you'll learn about George III, the King of Great Britain.

King George III

You've probably read about the Founding Fathers in the American Revolution. George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and Benjamin Franklin are all famous people in American history. But did you ever think about the people on other side?

One of those people was George III, the King of Great Britain. George III lived from 1738 to 1820. When his father died in 1760, George III became the king, which meant he was king in 1776 during the American Revolution. George III was, therefore, an important figure in the American Revolution, even though he never actually visited America himself.

George III & the Revolution

The United States of America used to be a colony of Great Britain. That meant Great Britain was the boss, and Americans had to do everything the British king and Parliament said. That started making Americans angry when the British government started raising taxes. While George III was king, Great Britain raised taxes on popular items like tea and sugar. This, and some other issues, bothered the Americans so much that in 1776, they said they didn't want to be a colony any longer.

The Declaration of Independence

In 1776, the Americans published the Declaration of Independence saying that from now on they were going to be an independent country, not a colony. In the Declaration of Independence, they said that George III had treated the colonies badly, especially by raising taxes. They accused him of being a tyrant, meaning a bad king who rules by force. Here's a quote from the Declaration of Independence about George III:

'The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations (taking too much power for himself), all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States.'

The Declaration of Independence went on to give a whole long list of bad things that the Americans blamed on George III, including trying to set up military rule in the colonies, not respecting their local governments, and taxing them without giving them a say.

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