tv Legends Lies The Patriots FOX News January 1, 2017 8:00pm-9:01pm PST
around the jamaica pass. >> no. we're americans. i admire a man of principle. but you are my prisoner. and you must take me to washington's troops. if you refuse... i will shoot you through the head. ♪ >> ♪ my country, 'tis of thee ♪ sweet land of liberty ♪ land where my fathers died ♪ land of the pilgrims' pride
♪ from every mountainside ♪ let freedom ring [ indistinct shouting ] [ gunshots ] >> pushed to their limits by an oppressive empire, a determined group of rebels unites under the cause of liberty. their quest for freedom will unify a people, ignite a revolution, and forge a new system of government. in time, these brave men and women will come to be known as the american patriots. ♪ americans, men and women from all walks of life and every corner of the world, bound by the promise of liberty.
but before the revolution, there are no americans, only british subjects, colonists without a nation of their own. but behind every nation stands its people. and beyond every legend lies the truth. >> when people think of the origins of the american revolution, they generally point to the financial conflict, taxation without representation. but beyond the economics, the revolution is a class war. the british view the american colonists as an inferior group of people. this means that the american revolution is about much more than political or financial independence. it's a fight to achieve the american identity. >> the struggle for an american identity begins in boston as colonists, tired of being oppressed by an empire that sees them only as a source of revenue, begin to take action.
two of the first men to fight back against british tyranny are sam adams and john hancock, who start by avoiding british taxes. >> i'm looking for something special and beyond his majesty's reach. >> well, john hancock was the heir to an import-export business and was one of the richest men in massachusetts and probably the most famous smuggler. [ indistinct conversations ] >> hancock, you are under arrest. >> outrageous. >> gentlemen, please. i think it best if we did not interfere with the sheriff's business. >> john hancock's ship, the liberty, is seized by the british because he was supposedly smuggling wine. they felt that acts passed by the british regulating american trade were too burdensome, as were the taxes. and they felt entitled
to free trade. >> the charges brought against hancock lack evidence, which presents an opportunity for one of boston's sharpest lawyers -- john adams. >> mr. adams, if you would be so kind. >> thank you, your honor. >> adams says every man in a free country deserves a fair trial. he believes that, and he will not waiver from that belief throughout his life. >> is there any evidence of any kind whatsoever regarding my client and these spurious accusations? >> mr. hancock owns the largest home in the city. >> well, by that rationale, let us convict king george himself of smuggling here today. [ indistinct shouting ] shall my liberty be destroyed by a collector for a debt without the common indulgence and lenity of the law? so it is established. >> while rich men like john hancock can afford legal help,
most are not so lucky. [ indistinct shouting ] >> you have no right to do this! >> across the colonies, tax collectors are given authority to search and seize personal property in place of unpaid taxes. >> seize all the records. >> the key to understanding the colonies and the colonists themselves is they feel as though they're protecting something that everybody in the empire enjoys -- the rights of englishmen. [ crickets chirping ] there were a group of merchants and political activists that were primed to watch for oversteps by parliament. and they were primed to protest it as soon as it happened. >> you cannot simply search a man's home and seize his property without proper cause or provocation. >> but how do we respond? what recourse do we even have?
>> i propose that we establish an association for the purpose of resisting these attacks on our rights. >> hear, hear! >> this group created a political organization called the sons of liberty. the power and the passion behind these protests really sort of took parliament by surprise. [ indistinct shouting ] >> as the sons of liberty take to the streets, the british army occupies boston and, under general thomas gage, sets out to crush the uprising. >> what i see of boston is a complete collapse of law and order. >> but the sons of liberty find new ways to fight back.arrp a spy ring, which includes paul revere, a silversmith who practices dentistry on the side. >> paul revere was a working man. and he was among the people most affected by
some of the shutdowns of business that occurred as boston became a hotbed of dissent. >> yeah. that should do it, dr. warren. two new teeth and a proper smile to charm the ladies, huh? or, uh, perhaps the general's wife, right? [ both chuckle ] >> between two sons of liberty, the cost of a new tooth might be a tip from a spy. >> surely you will consider this adequate payment. >> boys, let's start cleaning up. we've got some work to do tonight. >> when parliament tries to force the colonists to pay taxes on british tea, tensions in boston reach a boiling point. and the sons of liberty lead a protest that will reverberate across the atlantic. >> to the harbor!
[ all cheering ] >> the boston tea party may be the culmination of years of pent-up anger. but it's also a strategic act of nonviolence. the perpetrators dress up, conceal their identities. but another purpose is symbolic. by masquerading as mohawk indians, the patriots also send a message that they, like the native people before them, identify as american. >> we're gonna turn boston harbor into a teapot! >> the boston tea party is political theater at its finest. they throw the modern-day equivalent of $3 million worth of tea into the harbor. and of course, that gets immediate attention from the british crown. >> the sons of liberty are now targets of general gage and his army. and when the british march 15 miles outside boston to find them, joseph warren sends paul revere with a warning. [ crickets chirping ]
>> the regulars are coming out! the regulars are coming out! [ pounding on door ] >> how many are there? >> nearly 1,000 regulars on the reigns, just hours away. >> they aim to start a war. >> i best ride to concord right away, sound the alarm. >> then i'll go with you. >> no. no. john, it's too dangerous. >> we must rally with the militia. there's a minute company here in lexington. >> our place is with delegation. congress convenes in philadelphia in a few weeks. we need to begin our travel immediately. you will have your moment. >> as british troops arrive in lexington, hancock and adams flee, heading deeper into the safety of patriot territory.
[ birds chirping ] >> to the front! march. >> stand by. stand by. hold your ground. >> cease fire! cease fire! cease fire! cease fire! why are you checking your credit score? you don't want to ride the 13l forever, do you? the doctor said it's not contagious. [coughing] credit karma, huh? yeah, it's free. credit karma. give yourself some credit.
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>> as shots are fired at lexington green, a colonial uprising... >> fall back! >> ...becomes a full-scale rebellion. >> while many believe the militia who fight the british at lexington and concord are just a disorganized group of civilians, they are actually a well-drilled infantry, some of whom fought in the british army. while they prove their courage in this initial encounter, they are a long way from the discipline and organization required to win a war. for that, they must become a true army and unite behind their leader. >> once american blood gets shed -- and this is when americans are first starting thinking of american blood -- the real question behind all of this is, do the american colonists consider themselves englishmen? or do they consider themselves
american? >> in the aftermath, delegates from all 13 colonies meet in philadelphia for the second continental congress. the first order of business -- choosing a commander to lead the colonial militias, which for now have the british army trapped in boston. >> in terms of your options about who's gonna be commander in chief, on one end, you got john hancock, who's really put himself out there, this rich merchant with no military experience now saying, "ah, i'm gonna lead the army." [ indistinct conversations ] >> hancock wants the glory. >> we must have a commander in chief for all the colonies, sam. [ gavel banging ] >> the chair recognizes mr. john adams of massachusetts. >> mr. president, gentlemen, thousands of loosely affiliated volunteers have surrounded the british army at boston.
i hereby propose that this congress adopt this army before boston and appoint as its commander colonel george washington of virginia. >> hear, hear! [ rapping on table ] >> when john adams announces that george washington is the best man to lead, it's widely agreed by the other delegates, except perhaps for john hancock. >> with washington's appointment, the colonial militias become the continental army. but before washington arrives to take command, his army faces annihilation. looking to hold the british within boston, continental troops take the high ground around the harbor, setting up fortifications not on
the more famous bunker hill, but on breed's hill, where most of the action in the misnamed battle takes place. >> among the people fighting in this particular engagement are joseph warren as head of the massachusetts committee of safety. >> sure you wanna be up here, sir? sure you don't wanna be back in the rear? it's bound to get ugly up here. >> i'm here for the same reasons you are. >> while the continental army relies on volunteers, the british are known as the most disciplined fighting force in the world. >> forward...march! ♪ >> fire! ♪ >> field! >> cesar! hoover!
>> for god's sake, man, the gun! >> let's fire it. get into position! >> all right, fire. >> reload! >> [ grunting ] ♪ >> bunker hill is considered a defeat for the colonists. but the casualties are so high on the british side. and this prompts people in the british government and the british press to say, "one more victory such as this, the war will be lost." [ insects chirping ] >> though bunker hill is a moral victory for the americans, the continental army won't last long without equipment and resources. to find them, benjamin franklin heads
the secret committee in congress. >> our army is only as good as its intelligence. mm. well, we will need funds to recruit spies. morris, i need you to find some deep purses and go digging. >> the revolution had the potential to be a great equalizer. you have great men, though, that are put together in this very difficult circumstance. you have benjamin franklin, who is a genius at many things but knows nothing, really, about army supply. you have washington, who has never commanded anything larger than a regiment. and now, he's commander in chief of an army that he has to build. >> my god. this is my army? >> we didn't see any of you virginians up at bunker hill. >> if we'd have been there, friend, them red coats wouldn't have ran you boys off.
[ indistinct shouting ] [ shouting stops ] >> there's no massachusetts or virginia in this army! we face a common enemy. do you hear me? this is an american army. ♪ >> with his army falling apart and the standoff with the british dragging on, washington needs hope. and he gets it from an unlikely source. >> presenting miss phillis wheatley, sir. >> phillis wheatley was the first african-american poet to be published. she became, by some reports, george washington's favorite poet.
>> i have been much affected by your poem. would you do me the great honor of reading it? >> it would be my sincerest pleasure. proceed, great chief, with virtue on thy side. thy ev'ry action let the goddess guide. a crown, a mansion, and a throne that shine, with gold unfading washington, be thine. >> however undeserving i may be of such encomium, the style and manner exhibit a striking proof of wheatley's great poetical talents. >> a royal proclamation is issued that those people
who will not pledge loyalty to the crown will be considered traitors and should be hung. >> king george has declared us rebels. from this day forward, you are the continental army of the united colonies of america. [ all cheering ] >> raise our flag. [ dramatic music playing ] when it's time to move to underwear toddlers see things a bit differently thanks to pampers easy-ups while they see their first underwear you see the best way to potty train pampers easy-ups our first and only training underwear with an all-around stretchy waistband and pampers' superior protection so you'll see fewer leaks and they'll see their first underwear pampers easy-ups. the easiest way to underwear. pampers
>> after nearly 11 months of siege, george washington is able to build a unified army and finally break the british hold on boston. [ all cheering ] >> it's all part of this emerging american identity. and identities often take shape in opposition to something else. had there been no common enemy, it's quite likely that an american identity would not have formed at all. ♪ [ gunshots ] >> the british army is forced to retreat to nova scotia. but the reprieve will be short-lived. anticipating the enemy's next move, washington takes his young army to new york, believing the port city will be the next target for the british. [ birds chirping ] >> shoulder your fire locks! [ horse neighs ] >> rumor has it that king george has hired hessian mercenaries
and they're on the way with admiral howe's fleet. >> there is a victory for washington in the siege of boston in as much as the regulars evacuate boston. but they're gonna come back. and he knows that his army really isn't used to fighting. they're not ready for war. >> damn your eyes, man! pick up that musket! [ horse neighing ] >> our lookouts report the sightings of british ships off the coast of sandy hook, your excellency. >> we're not ready for this. [ birds chirping ] >> the signal fire isn't lit. [ dramatic music playing ] >> if the british were here, we would barely have a chance to make a stand. there is no discipline in this army. an army needs a loftier goal than mere survival.
the only answer now is to declare our independence. >> to draft america's declaration of independence, congress chooses a skilled writer and radical thinker from virginia, thomas jefferson. but to do so, jefferson must confront his internal conflict over the issue of slavery. >> mr. jefferson? >> bob, what have i told you about interrupting me? >> i'm sorry, sir jefferson. it's only that... what are you writing? >> it's for the congress, political matters. it doesn't concern you. >> as a tobacco farmer and a virginian, jefferson supports the inequality of slave ownership. yet he writes the immortal phrase, "all men are created equal,"
the cornerstone of the emerging american identity. while a glaring contradiction, it doesn't invalidate his words. jefferson truly wants to liberate future generations from slavery. so he attacks the slave trade in his declaration. that decision heightens tensions between the northern and southern colonies at the very time they need to come together. >> when jefferson said, "all men are created equal," no one in 1776 knew exactly what he meant. but the important thing was that they were fighting for independence. and how it was phrased turned out to be a much bigger deal later. this became this beacon toward which americans have felt they had to strive ever since. >> on july 4, 1776, congress approves jefferson's declaration. and washington's army
gets the unifying cause it needs to stand up to the british. [ crickets chirping ] >> "when in the course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have... >> king george iii, who was a meticulous record keeper and kept a journal, wrote an entry on july 4, 1776, that said, "today nothing has happened." if only he knew what was going on thousands of miles away, across the atlantic. [ cheers and applause ] >> while the declaration unites patriots from across the colonies, british war ships surround washington's meager new york stronghold. general william howe invades long island with 20,000 hardened british troops, determined to outmaneuver and overpower the young continental army. >> one of you must lead me around the jamaica pass.
if you refuse... i shall shoot you through the head. >> no. >> it's all right. [ dramatic music playing ] fine. i'll take you there. >> howe forces a local tavern keeper to lead him on a little-used path called the jamaica pass. outflanking washington, the continental force is crushed, sending its survivors fleeing in confusion. with his army trapped against the east river and facing destruction, washington's only chance to save the revolution is to run. >> get every skiff you can muster. keep the campfires burning along the heights so the british think we are settled for the night. we must not make a sound. >> while washington's retreat from new york under the cover
of fog is a lucky break, it's also one of the wisest decisions he makes. it allows him to preserve his army and learn from his own mistakes. he now realizes the british are counting on their overwhelming numbers and want to force him into a direct conflict on their terms. to succeed, washington must now find a new, american way of fighting.
having been an officer in the british army, that allows him to perpetrate the surprise attack in trenton. [ dramatic music playing ] >> [ shouts in german ] >> it's sort of a hit-and-run attack, throws the british completely off balance. and that turns the tide of the revolution. that saves it right there. i mean, people start flocking to the cause -- "we may win this thing after all." [ dramatic music playing ] >> ohh! >> outnumbered and outmatched, washington's victory at trenton gives the revolution new hope. but to win the war, america will need help. [ cheers and applause ] [ dramatic music playing ] >> we thought, "let's take the british's natural enemy and try to encourage them to help us out." the perfect person to convince the french to do something
was benjamin franklin. >> madame. [ light laughter ] >> he's sent to france to go secure foreign aid from the french king. he presents himself as he thinks the french court wants to see him. he's the rustic american with the coonskin cap on his head. ♪ he makes quite the splash in versailles, where everybody's wearing the powdered wigs and the makeup and the elaborate dress for men and women. he is absolutely not rustic. but he's playing a role. >> thanks to the french alliance franklin secures, washington traps british general charles cornwallis in yorktown and prepares to strike the killing blow. >> the goal is to remove the fortifications at redoubt 9 and redoubt 10. >> colonel de gimat will lead the american assault.
>> mr. hamilton is quite capable, general, with many attributes and talents... or so i'm told. [ insects chirping ] >> use your bayonets, boys. don't stop to fire! [ dramatic music playing ] >> it's the bloody americans! pull off! sound the alarm! [ indistinct shouting ] >> ah! >> the only answer now is to declare our independence. >> america is at war, dr. franklin. >> welcome home. >> for more revealing stories on these and other patriots featured in "legends and lies," purchase the companion book, available at billoreilly.com and bookstores nationwide.
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[ gunshots ] >> with their unlikely victory finally in reach, continental forces unite under george washington for a final assault on yorktown. >> with washington's army surrounding yorktown, cornwallis has no choice but to surrender. >> washington's victory at yorktown forces the british to begin the peace process. but the war isn't over. 30,000 british troops
remain in new york and savannah. and fighting rages between patriot and loyalist militias in the south for another 18 months, until an official peace treaty is signed. >> washington wins the revolution. but the thing is, after he won, he walks away from power. all he wants to do is go home. >> oh, thank you, martha. >> you said you were done with all this business when you retired. >> trust me, martha, i'm not going anywhere. ♪ >> though the war is over, the young nation still needs washington's leadership to keep it from falling back into chaos. he's called back into service, first to help create a new constitution... and then to become america's first president. >> preserve, protect, and defend
the constitution of the united states. [ cheers and applause ] >> on the surface, winning freedom from british rule unites the 13 american colonies as one nation. but the founding fathers still have conflicting ideas on the future of america. before their shared values can define a new american identity, they must fight a bitter war of words, one that pushes the country to the brink of collapse. ♪ [ birds chirping ] >> washington chooses two great figures of the revolution to serve in his cabinet -- alexander hamilton and thomas jefferson. but the men who once united against the british are now divided by competing visions of what america should be. >> your plan is but the first step on the road to monarchy. >> what is the national government for if not to lift the states out of this crisis? >> i would prefer anarchy to you turning america
into another great british. >> now we get into an era where allegiances, party affiliations, jefferson versus hamilton, really becomes this no-holds-barred, bare-knuckled fight. [ dramatic music playing ] [ bird squawking ] >> jefferson and hamilton form opposing political parties, jefferson's democratic republicans and hamilton's federalists. their new political battle continues for a decade, when jefferson runs for president himself. [ indistinct conversations ] >> while thomas jefferson and alexander hamilton fight bitterly, their principled disagreements shape the american identity. they're each men with strong personal convictions and ideas based on reasoned argument. but there is one thing they agree on -- that a man lacking moral values can never become president, a man named aaron burr. >> once we fought to rid
ourselves of unjust taxes and tyranny! >> but, needing burr's new york votes, jefferson goes against his better judgement, choosing aaron burr as his running mate in the election of 1800. >> best of luck to you, colonel burr. >> and to you, general hamilton. after all, it's only politics. >> jefferson's power play works too well. he and aaron burr end up in a tie for the presidency. and hamilton has a chance to sway the election to his advantage. [ birds chirping ] >> jefferson is a contemptible hypocrite. burr is an empty smile. he is a hollow shell without honor. i would rather have jefferson as president. >> you can't mean that! >> don't ever tell me what i mean.
>> what a choice this must have been for hamilton, really. i mean, how bad must this have been for hamilton to endorse jefferson -- because at least he's got the interest of the country at heart and he's not a damn snake like burr is? >> thanks to hamilton's interference, jefferson wins the presidency and burr becomes vice president. but, lacking power, burr lashes out at the man who sabotaged him, eventually challenging hamilton to a duel. ♪ one week before their final encounter, hamilton and burr meet at an independence day banquet for veterans of the revolution. [ indistinct shouting ] >> play us a song. >> he's trying to save our government! >> huzzah! >> don't you unders-- >> ♪ why, soldiers, why should we be melancholy boys? ♪ ♪ oh, why soldiers, why ♪ whose business is to die? ♪ what? sighing? fie
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>> hamilton! >> i am a dead man. >> in the 18th century, you get hit in the gut, you're a goner, but you're not gonna die quickly. >> with the death of alexander hamilton, thomas jefferson is the last man standing in their battle to define america. but the clash between their competing ideas -- hamilton's strong federal government and jefferson's vision of state's rights -- continue to shape the country. >> jefferson, philosophically, was a believer in small government. that's what he said when he wasn't president. when he was president, he thought, "well, maybe this power isn't such a bad thing after all." and the real test came when the french government offered to sell the western half of the mississippi valley to the united states.
♪ >> with the louisiana purchase, jefferson doubles the size of the united states. and in the years after his presidency, america continues to strive for its manifest destiny, expanding both the nation and what it means to be an american. ♪ exactly 50 years after crafting america's declaration of independence together, thomas jefferson and john adams are dying on the very same day. ♪ >> what day is it? >> it's the 4th, father. >> it is a great day. it is a good day. [ gasping ] thomas jefferson survives.
>> when thomas jefferson and john adams die within hours of each other on the nation's 50th anniversary, the first chapter in american history comes to a dramatic close. earned with tremendous courage and perseverance, our nation stands on the sacrifice of our founding patriots and the liberty they fought so hard to achieve. while our government does require constant evaluation and revision, the core values of the patriots remain firm. so does their grand democratic experiment called the united states of america.