Under the command of George Washington, 17 thousand American and French troops began the siege of Yorktown in Virginia on September 28, 1781. The number of the British defenders and its allies reached 8-9,000. Siege trenches crucial for the outcome of the battle had been prepared by October 9 and heavy bombardment of the town began on the same day. Due to the continuous attacks lasting for three weeks Charles Cornwallis called for an armistice on October 17.
The defeat led to the resignation of the British government in 1782. The United States was finally acknowledged to be an independent state by the Treaty of Paris signed on September 3, 1783.
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