In the Revolutionary War, the two opposing parties were the Whigs, who believed in separating from England, and the Tories, who believed that Americans should not break away from England. The Tories were also referred to as the Loyalists and the Whigs were also referred to as the Revolutionaries.Continue Reading
Whig and Tory were the names of the rival political parties in Britain, so they were used in the colonies since they were familiar nicknames. In modern times, Americans began calling the Whigs "patriots" because of their immense love for America.
Throughout the Revolutionary War, the colonists often changed their minds and switched from party to party. It was difficult to support one side completely as many people wanted to choose sides to help their personal needs, such as their businesses and their families, by adhering to the popular opinion in their various communities.
Some people did not want to take a side in the war, but a year after the Declaration of Independence was signed into action, the North Carolina revolutionary government created laws that forced all men of the military age to take an oath. This oath bound them to support the new government. The only groups that were exempt from this law were the four Christian groups: Quakers, Mennonites, Dunkers, or German Baptists, and Moravians. However, to escape the oath, they had to pay tax rates that were three or four times higher than the typical tax rate.Learn more about US History