Why didn"t Spain hit in the American Revolutionary War? i would have actually thought the they would have assisted the colonies, and also then taken benefit of their post-war weak to include North America to your empire.

You are watching: What problems did the united states experience with spain and great britain


Spain was no a bystander come the American Revolutionary War, back that reality is rarely mentioned in cursory historical surveys. Spain"s an inspiration to aid the American colonists was propelled by a desire to reclaim the land it had actually lost to Britain and, with various other European powers, do incremental gains against British possessions in other parts that the world. Although part dreamers in Spain probably envisioned its ultimate possession of the entire new World, ns have uncovered no evidence that together an idea guided its help to the American colonists.

Spain was not a bystander come the American Revolutionary War

France and also Spain were at that time both under Bourbon kings, louis XVI and Carlos III, respectively, whose American possessions had been significantly reduced by the 1763 treaty of Paris that finished the 7 Years" (the French and Indian) War. In ~ the beginning of the American battle of Independence, American commissioners were sent to Europe through the continent Congress to seek support for your cause. Man Jay, American representative in Spain, discovered success. American promised both France and Spain the reconstruction of much of the floor they had actually lost come the brother in America. In April 1779, Spain cursed to helping the Americans.

Financial Support

This aid did no consist the Spanish troops come fight alongside Americans, but it was substantial nevertheless. The Spanish and also French emperors provided big loans and also outright contribute of money to the Americans. Spain laundered this money, together we would say today, through a fictitious private trading company, Roderique Hortalez and Company, operating out of the Lesser Antilles, which sent both money and war material directly to the Americans. The money helped support the Americans" new currency, the Continental, and additionally made it feasible for the american to carry in international military officers, such as Augustus von Steuben, Casimir Pulaski, and also Thaddeus Kosciuszko, to fight because that them.

Land Battles

Spain started a military campaign of that is own against the brother in Florida and also Louisiana. Indigenous 1779 with 1782, the Spanish governor of Louisiana, Don Bernardo de Gàlvez, carried out a collection of military actions versus the brother to retake forts that Spain had previously lost to the British, being successful in the Mississippi river Valley, and at Baton Rouge, Natchez, Mobile, and also Pensacola. In 1782, Spain additionally succeeded in wresting earlier the Bahamas native the British.

Naval Support

A very substantial form of Spain"s assistance for the Americans connected a strategy of involvement Britain"s various other European rivals in tying up brothers naval resources by engaging them elsewhere than in Britain"s American colonies. Spain go this, because that example, against Gibraltar and Minorca, and together with France sent a fleet right into the English Channel to menace the brother coast and tie up much more British ships. Many of the European naval powers, including Spain, united against Britain"s effort to interrupt their trade v America. V both France and also Spain (and Holland) indirect in the fray, Britain"s marine was outmatched and also could not efficiently concentrate its military force in America. Spanish ships joined through French ships in the marine blockade that the British army at Yorktown in 1781, preventing General Cornwallis"s resupply by the brother navy, bring about his surrender.


Thomas E. Chàvez, Spain and the self-reliance of the joined States: an Intrinsic Gift (Albuquerque: college of new Mexico Press, 2002).

Light Townsend Cummins, Spanish Observers and also the American Revolution, 1775-1783 (Baton Rouge: Louisiana State university Press, 1991).

Winston De Ville, ed., Yo Solo: The fight Journal the Bernardo de Gàlvez throughout the American Revolution (New Orleans: Polyanthos, 1978).

David French, The British way in Warfare, 1688-2000 (London: unexpected Hyman, 1990).

Images:"Prise de Pensacola," Illus. In: Recueil d"estampes representant les différents événements de la Guerre qui a procuré l"indépendance aux Etats Unis de l"Amérique ... / Nicolas Ponce. Paris : Ponce et Godefroy, <1784?>, Prints and Photographs Division, Library that Congress.

"El Ecsmo Senor Conde De Galves," Museo Nacional de Historia, Castillo de Chapultepec, Mexico.

Detail native A. R. Mengs" 1761 portrait the Carlos III, Museo Nacional del Prado, Madrid.

About the Author


Historian man Buescher is one author and professor who formerly headed Tibetan language broadcasts in ~ Voice the America. His Ph.D. Is from the college of Virginia and he has actually published generally on the background of Tibetan and also Indian Buddhism and also on the background of 19th-century American spiritualism.


U.S. Marine Corps
1492: An ongoing Voyage
Austin Treasures: digital Exhibits indigenous the Austin background Center
Photographer to the World-The Detroit posting Company
Digital Scriptorium
The light Brothers in Photographs


Ask A...

Quick Links

About thedailysplash.tv

thedailysplash.tv is design to assist K–12 history teachers access resources and materials to boost U.S. Background education in the classroom. With resources from the U.S. Department of Education, the facility for history and new Media (CHNM) has produced thedailysplash.tv through the score of making background content, to teach strategies, resources, and research accessible. | READ MORE


Staff »Project partner »Technical Working group »Research torture »

Contact Us


Follow Us

thedailysplash.tv on Twitter

Except where otherwise noted, the contents on this site is licensed under a an imaginative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial re-publishing Alike 3.0 License.

See more: How To Resolve ' Halo Is Not Installed On Your Computer, Halo Mcc Pc, Halo 3 Dlc Not Installed Error


The content of this website does no necessarily reflect the see or plans of the U.S. Room of education and learning nor does point out of profession names, advertising products, or organizations imply endorsement through the U.S. Government.

thedailysplash.tv Outreach | Privacy Policy

Interactive historic Thinking Poster (Elementary) »
What is historical Thinking? »
Outreach Videos »