What Was The Greatest Challenge Facing The Second Continental Congress When It Met In Philadelphia?
|Answer In Short: The Greatest Challenge Was To Organize It Secretly From The Eyes of British Spies And Officials. However, They Succeeded In Doing This.
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First of all, the Second Continental Congress was a meeting organized to counter the atrocities of the British Parliament and King George III on the 13 colonies of North America.
The meeting’s main purpose was to end up all the political relationships of the 13 colonies with the Empire of Great Britain and form a new sovereign nation.
During the meeting, the 13 colonies’ delegates made some important decisions. Those decisions are:
- How would they lead the revolutionary war in the upcoming days?
- How would they request external powers (like France, Spain, Netherlands, etc.) to help them in that war?
- If they would ask foreign powers for help, then to whom it would be better to ask?
- And finally, how they would achieve independence, etc.
We can easily understand from the points above that the Second Continental Congress’s intention was completely against the interests of the Empire of Great Britain.
Therefore it is very obvious that their first and greatest challenge was to organize the meeting without the British authority knowing about it.
On the other hand, the meeting happened only two months after the Battles of Lexington and Concord; hence the situation between the British authority and the 13 colonies was already in bad condition.
So, organizing the Continental Congress secretly from the British authority was the biggest challenge for the leaders. Because even if the British got a single clue about it, the whole game could have been spoiled.
Secondly, keeping uninterrupted communication between the 13 colonies was another significant challenge.
In the Second Continental Congress, all 13 colonies participated. For this reason, it was necessary to keep uninterrupted communication between them.
But the problem was, during that time, the communication system was not as developed, as it is today. So, keeping this consistency was another greatest challenge for the leaders.
However, they managed it somehow. Especially on this side, Committees of Correspondence played a significant role.
Did Colonies Get Success In Organizing The Congress?
Yes, of course, the colonies’ delegates succeeded in organizing the Second Continental Congress without any interruption from the British side.
The result came out as the revolution’s success in 13 colonies and the achievement of independence from the rule of Great Britain.
On July 4th, 1776, through the Declaration of Independence, the 13 colonies declared independence from British rule and formed a new nation with the name of the United States of America.
However, along with Congress’ role, this victory has some other core reasons too.
1. Secrecy and uninterrupted communication between one colony to another. On this side, the Committee of Correspondence’s role was very important.
2. Great leaders and their leadership. Such as George Washington, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin, etc.
3. The massive landmass of the 13 colonies. Due to this reason, it was almost impossible for the British to easily find out any rebellious activities from the colonists’ side.
4. The mainland of Great Britain was located on the European continent, far away from the 13 colonies. In this case, it was difficult for them to easily provide military and other support to the British soldiers and officials. Communication between the mainland authority and the British colonial authority took many weeks of duration.