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On this day:

Treaty of Paris signed

The American Revolution formally comes to an end when representatives of the United States, Great Britain, Spain, and France sign the Treaty of Paris. American independence was recognized by the British, and the boundaries of the new republic were agreed upon: Florida north to the Great Lakes, and the Atlantic coast west to the Mississippi River. In April 1775, on a common green in Lexington, Massachusetts, American colonists answered King George III's refusal of political and economic reform with armed revolution. On July 4, 1776, more than a year after the first volleys of the war were fired, the Second Continental Congress officially adopted the Declaration of Independence. Five difficult years later, in October 1781, British General Charles Lord Cornwallis surrendered to American and French forces at Yorktown, Virginia, bringing to an end the last major battle of the Revolution. With the 1783 signing of the Treaty of Paris with Britain, the United States formally became a free and independent nation.