In 1775, some people in the British North American colonies were arguing with the British government about how much control Great Britain should have over taxes and life in the colonies. The colonists wanted to influence decisions about laws and taxes but had no representation in the British parliament.
In 1776, when they weren't able to come to an agreement, thirteen of the colonies declared themselves independent of Britain and went to war. The American Revolution, also called the American War of Independence, was the result.
To hurt the American economy, the British promised freedom to any enslaved Black person who escaped from a rebel master. Black men, women, and children seized the opportunity to live in freedom behind the British lines. Then they had to live through the horrors of war.