The span between the years 1750 and 1776 were tumultuous times in the history of the American colonies, in which the population of the colonies went from being loyal citizens of the British empire, to having the bond so strained that the colonies broke away violently. The events of this time period, such as the French and Indian war, and increasing tension with Britain regarding its policies regarded the colonies served to help form a sense of unity and identity, although strained at times because of local differences and an unwillingness to cooperate at certain critical junctures. .
In the early 1750's, there was very little sense of unity or a national identity between the colonies as a whole. Even though they were all irritated by, and resistant to the colonial authorities in the 1750's, most of them saw no need to consider themselves separate from England, or to cooperate with each other in any way. Even in 1754, when faced by the joint threat of the French and their Indian allies, they were unwilling to come together as one. In Document A, a cartoon from the Philadelphia Gazette in 1754, Benjamin Franklin depicts the colonies as the body of a snake, cut to pieces, ready to be individually swallowed up by its enemies. He was trying to show the need for unity between the colonies, and for them all to the Albany Plan, which would have given America a central government. But when the time came to approve the plan and to make it a reality, none of the colonies approved of it, preferring to stay as individuals. Many considered their fellow colonists as a worst alternative than the monarchy in England, as summed up by Father Mather Byles in Document D, in which he states his preference for a single tyrant, in King George, as opposed to a multitude of local, smaller tyrants, in the form of other colonists vying for power in a vacuum left if the colonists were free of the British. .