France vs. Britain

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The French & Indian War

(A.K.A. The Seven Years War)

France vs. Britain

For control of North America

Battle of The Bloody Morning Scout

Many 8th graders these days unknowingly assume that the English, up until the time of The American Revolution, controlled America. They have heard stories of the Pilgrims, and of Jamestown, and Virginia. The have heard stories of George Washington, and Ben Franklin, and William Penn, and have studied very few Frenchmen during this dramatic time period of change for the North American continent. It is therefore understandable that middle-schoolers might assume then that America has always been one thing and one thing alone….controlled by the English.

Sadly however, the truth is far from what many students today realize. England was fairly quick getting into the game of exploration of North America. John Cabot was the first to explore North America for England in 1497. The first French expedition would not come until much later in the year 1541. The English’s first attempt to colonize the “New World” occurred in 1585 at Roanoke, and was a dismal flop. However, by 1607, just twenty two years later, England would successfully establish a colony at Jamestown.

The French on the other hand, though much later in the exploration game, would establish their first colony in 1564 at Fort Caroline near Jacksonville, Florida. This first attempt would be undone by the Spanish who attacked and destroyed the settlement from the nearby Spanish controlled colony of Saint Augustine. France would then establish its first “successful” colony of Acadia in America in 1604 near Saint Croix Island (present day New England territory). The following year, the settlement would be moved by Samuel De Champlain from the island to the mainland and would become Port Royal.

As you can see, the English were exploring North America much earlier than the French, but it would take the English 110 years to establish a colony successfully in North America. The French on the other hand would establish roots in North America a mere sixty-three years after their first expedition to the continent. It may sound like a small window, but France was here three years before England, and in that time, France would gain a valuable foothold on the continent, and would begin to establish French supply lines using the Saint Lawrence Seaway as a means of transporting settlers, traders, goods, and building supplies. In time, France would then explore much of the Ohio River valley stumbling onto the Mississippi River, therefore creating a means of connecting modern day New England through the Saint Lawrence, The Great Lakes, and The Mississippi River, all the way to Louisiana, at the French port city of New Orleans, in the Gulf of Mexico.

In time, a tremendous battle for control of this great continent would pit France against Britain. Try to pause now and imagine what would be different about this land, had France come to control it as opposed to Britain. Oddly enough, it would be the Native Americans, not the Europeans, who would influence the outcome of this war the most. (Complete Review 1 at end of packet)

The Beginning

It is 1754, in western Pennsylvania, and a young British commander is leading his men through The Ohio River Valley. This young British commander is only twenty-two years old and his name is George Washington. He has had little experience leading men to this point in his career, and even less battlefield experience. This territory in the Ohio River Valley (near present day Pittsburgh) will become the most fought over land in the entire French and Indian War. Who ever controls this territory will control North America, for it is important territory which will either allow the English to continue their westward expansion, or allow the French to link their northern territories with their territories in the Gulf of Mexico. If the French do this, they will have surrounded the English colonies completely.

George Washington has made a friend in this territory. This ally is named the Half King. The Half King is part of the Iroquois nation, but as strong as the Half King is, he cannot act alone. The Half King must first have the approval from the Six Nations. The Six Nations is the Iroquois council which calls all of the shots for the territories of the Ohio River Valley and New York. The Half King has made a deal with this young British commander to allow the British to build a trading post at the forks of the Allegheny and Ohio River. The Half King has made this decision to allow Washington and his men build this post on his own. He has acted without the permission of the Six Nations. It is a risk that if successful, would paint the Half King in a very positive light in the council’s eyes. Basically it is a move the Half King has made to help enhance his own political power among his people.

However, as soon as Washington and his men begin construction of this trading post, The French learn of it, and attack, taking over the post without much of a fight. The Half King, who had chosen sides in this struggle, despite his people’s decision to remain neutral, is now humiliated, and he apparently is not a very forgiving individual.

As Washington leads his men through the dense forests near Pittsburgh, he stumbles upon a group of Frenchmen who are on a diplomatic mission camped in the woods. Washington, still stinging from his embarrassing defeat at the trading post, orders his men to fire on the French without warning. The surprise attack on these diplomats is over very quickly. After the skirmish ends, Washington has a few French prisoners to turn over to the British authorities in Virginia.

However, The Half King also still feels embarrassed and approaches these Frenchmen whose hands are bound, have no weapons, and are kneeling, waiting to be moved by Washington’s men. As he stands over these Frenchmen, he utters a threat to them, and then strikes each of them dead, scalping them as well. The inexperienced Washington watches in horror, but does nothing to stop the execution of his French prisoners. The code of conduct of war at this time says that Washington, the highest ranking officer on the scene, is personally responsible for the prisoners, and his failure to act to protect them is seen by the French as an inexcusable act, and now the French and Indian war is born.

Washington realizes there are going to be consequences for the deaths of the French soldiers, and immediately begins constructing Fort Necessity out of, ….well…. necessity. The Half King now realizes that he has little confidence in Washington, and abandons the young Virginian. As the French approach from the forest and reach the tree line to the clearing Washington has used to construct his fort, Washington lines his men up to fight in the traditional sense. However, the French and the Native Americans they are travelling with no longer fight them in the “European” sense. They instead use trees and cover to hide behind, sniping at Washington and his men. Washington’s men are forced to climb into trenches to continue the fight or be cut to ribbons. It is however at this point that the skies open up and heavy rains begin to fall, quickly filling the shallow trenches with water.

Now wading in their water filled trenches, it is not long before the powder Washington and his men are using to fight against the French is too wet to be able to catch a spark making it impossible for them to fight back. Washington is forced to surrender Fort Necessity and the territory to the French. Ironically the date on which his surrender is signed is July 4th, 1754. Unfortunately for Washington, he had poor French translators with him at the time, and when presented with the treaty outlining the terms of his surrender, he unknowingly admits to murdering the French soldiers himself. (Complete Review 2 at end of packet)

Fort Duquesne

The years go by and the conflict to determine who will control America continues to escalate. It is now the spring of 1755. 1800 French troops have been sent into the St. Lawrence, while 1000 British troops have been sent to Virginia to better defend their territories. The British have selected General Edward Braddock to capture Fort Duquesne from the French. George Washington, now twenty-three, knows this territory well, and is named aide-to-camp for Braddock. This is a great opportunity for Washington to serve under such a respected British leader. Braddock himself has little battle experience, while 1/3 of Braddock’s troops have no training whatsoever. Braddock is also unwilling to receive any aid from the Native Americans living in the area, as he assumes he will easily be able to defeat the French at Fort Duquesne (modern day Pittsburgh area).

Braddock plans to march his force of 2100 men 110 miles from Fort Cumberland in Maryland through thick forest mountains to western Pennsylvania. After a week, moving a large body of men with equipment, provisions, and heavy cannon across the Allegheny Mountains, he has only moved twenty-two miles. Frustrated, and too slow, he splits his forces, and advances with 1400 men. Braddock and his men reach the Monongahela River within three weeks. He and the French clash and it is disastrous for the British. Again, Braddock insists his troops fight the traditional European way, standing shoulder to shoulder, while the French and their native allies use trees, heave brush and the land itself to their advantage. On the French and Indian side there are twenty-one casualties. On the British side there are 1000 casualties. Of the fifty-four British women marching with the troop, four return home. The rest are taken captive by the Native Americans. Braddock himself is injured in the battle, and dies five days into the retreat. He is buried on the trail, and all wagons and men march over him to disguise the grave.

(Complete Review 3 at end of packet)

Burial of General Braddock

The Battle of Lake George

On August 8th, 1755, British general William Johnson set out from Albany, New York with a force of 3,500 men hoping to capture Fort Saint-Frédéric. Any element of surprise the British had hoped for was destroyed by the French discovery of English plans left behind after the defeat of General Braddock near Fort Duquesne in July.

Johnson had hoped to be able to convince Native Americans living in the area to join him against the French. After days of negotiations, and ceremonial speeches and exchanges of gifts, Johnson can only gather 200 Native Americans as well as their chief, Chief Henry, to travel with them. Over 1000 natives living in the area remain neutral and unconvinced that Britain was the superior force in the area.

At the same time, French commander Baron Dieskau engaged Johnson’s army at the south end of body of water the British call Lake George. In a show of unity, the French commander Dieskau, removes his French commander’s uniform and dresses as a native American himself, complete with war paint and wearing a Native American chest. Johnson sends scouts ahead expecting to be able to surprise the French forces in the area. It is however the French and their Native American scouts who are waiting for the British.

Battle of Lake George

At The Battle of “The Bloody Morning Scout”, chief Henry, thirty Native Americans and 150 colonials are killed. Those who survive run back four miles to warn Johnson. French forces march on Johnson. At the Battle of Lake George, Johnson forces the French to retreat, but Johnson himself is hit by a musket and the Mohawk fighting with him go home to mourn their dead. Johnson, out of necessity, orders his men to build a fort at the base of Lake George to hold the position they have won. This will be called Fort William A. Henry.

In 1756, George Washington has in a sense been demoted. He has been removed from the British front lines, and has been reassigned to protect the Virginia territory from invading Native Americans. He is only twenty-three, and this is a serious blow to his ego and self confidence. He decides to follow some of Braddock’s strict leading examples he learned while under his command, and begins to hang deserters in his militia who are leaving the fight to return home to protect their families from invading Native Americans on the War Path.

Montcalm Campbell

Also in 1756, Lieutenant General, John Campbell is sent to replace Braddock. New England’s colonial militia sign contracts for service, but fear strict rules under direct British army, and agree to follow colonial military leaders only. The Iroquois in New York stay neutral, while Native Americans in Canada continue their long and successful alliance with the French. However, things are about to change for the French and their friendship with their Native American allies. For the new French commander Louis Joseph Montcalm sees the Native Americans as savages or barbarians. This perception by a French commander is a completely new and unexpected change for the Native Americans.

Since their first encounters with the French, the French have always treated them fairly, and as equals. The French have chosen to live in and among the Native Americans, many even taking Native American women as their brides. The French are not interested in relocating tribes, and moving in on their lands. They instead choose to live among them, trade openly with them, and learn the lessons for living in North America the natives have to offer. This new French commander’s perceptions of them will be a dramatic change.

At the same time Montcalm takes the reigns for the French, The British have decided to seize an opportunity and attack a long standing French settlement in the British dominated territory of New England, or today’s modern day Nova Scotia. The British attack the French colony of Acadia. Acadians had lived there for 100 years, and are forced off their land and from their homes. Their possessions as well as crops in their fields are burned. They are rounded up like livestock, and shipped to the British colonies. Many French refugees refuse to live in British controlled territory, and under British rule. Entire families of French colonists consisting of men, women and even very young infants must therefore make their way over 900 miles, walking along, or riding the Mississippi to Louisiana where they relocate and become known as, what we call today, Cajuns. (Complete Review 4 at end of packet)

The Battle of Fort Oswego

During the week of August 10, 1756, a force of French soldiers and Canadian militia under General Montcalm captured and occupied the British fortifications at Fort Oswego, located at the site of present-day Oswego, New York. In addition to 1,700 prisoners, Montcalm's force seized the fort's 121 cannon. The fall of Fort Oswego effectively interrupted the British presence on Lake Ontario and removed it as a threat to the nearby French-controlled Fort Frontenac. It truly was a one sided victory, and with the help of 250 Native Americans, the French capture the fort in only three days. Many Native Americans enjoy the loot from the battle taking scalps, guns, shoes, and other treasures they take from the fallen British.

The taking of loot and scalps from their fallen enemy had long since been a way of Native American warriors returning from war to honor their family, neighbors and other tribesmen. It was also a way of earning status within the tribe itself. If a warrior were to return home with many scalps, a couple rifles, a powder horn, and a British hat, he would distribute this throughout his village sharing his plunders with the entire tribe…thereby gaining their respect and at the same time demonstrating that he was a valuable warrior for the tribe. (below: Battle for Fort Oswego)

The Battle for Fort William Henry

In August of 1757, the Marquis de Montcalm mounts an assault on Lake George. 2000 Native American troops are with him, and 6000 French troops advance on Fort William Henry. The Fort’s commander is British colonel, George Monroe, and his fort is surrounded. Monroe writes his superior, general, Daniel Webb asking for more troops. His request is taken by a messenger just sixteen miles down the road to Fort Edward. General Webb then returns Colonel Monroe’s messenger with a reply, but the messenger is shot and the response is intercepted by the French.

Montcalm gives Monroe a chance to surrender, but he will not give up. On August 6, 1757 the French have dug trenches and have gotten cannons within range of the fort and have begun shelling it heavily. At one point, the Fort’s flag is hit, and falls out of site of the French forces outside. Montcalm sees this as an opportunity to approach Monroe once again. Montcalm’s assistant has Webb’s response from the dead messenger.

Monroe is once again stubborn about not surrendering. He tells Montcalm that his men will fight bravely and will dig their own graves behind the fort’s walls if they must. Montcalm is most impressed with the British commander’s unwillingness to submit to such an impressive French force. One may call it blind arrogance, but Montcalm perceives Monroe as an honorable leader of the British. Monroe then tells Montcalm that he expects at any moment, reinforcements from Fort Edward and Commander Webb, just sixteen miles away.

It is at this time that Montcalm asks his assistant to step forward and read the intercepted message from General Webb to Monroe. Monroe is informed that Webb thought it wasn’t wise to send reinforcements. He instead tells Monroe to get the best surrender terms possible. Monroe basically has no other options available, and is shocked that Webb is not willing to aid his defense when he is just a few miles away.

Fort William Henry has been under siege for six days now, sustained heavy shelling, and the walls have been destroyed. Monroe surrenders, and Montcalm designs the surrender so that his Native American allies are not allowed or given the opportunity to kill or plunder the British as they had done in Oswego.

Terms of surrender:

  1. British will be allowed safe passage from the fort.

  2. Provisions & Supplies from their fort will go to Canada.

  3. British may keep their personal property.

  4. Native Americans can have what is left.

Montcalm gathers the war chiefs and tells them their will be no captives, plunder, or scalping like in Oswego. The Native American allies feel betrayed. Many had died alongside the French and had expected to return to their people with the honors of war. Montcalm then invites the defeated British commanders to a banquet, but will not allow the Native Americans to eat with them. This action adds further outrage and insult to the Native Americans, and they begin to wonder if their French “brothers” truly are concerned with their best interests as well, or whether they are only playing a role best designed for French interests alone.

(Native American attack on surrendered, unarmed British troops)

On the dawn of August 10th, the British leave Fort William Henry. They create a long disorganized line and the Native Americans are not about to let what they earned walk away. The Native Americans approach the column and begin taking British hats and swords while no British soldier or officer resists. By the time the column has moved its entirety through the Native Americans surrounding them, the natives have become much more bold, and by the time the last of the column approaches, the natives have decided they want scalps as well. The New England colonial troops in the rear of the line are killed, scalped or kidnapped. Wildly exaggerated reports state 1500 are dead, but the reality is seventy-five are killed, and 500 are taken captive and then ransomed back after a few days. These actions will enrage Montcalm, and he is more firmly set in his perception of his allies being nothing more than savage animals. The natives themselves abandon Montcalm, and return home to their tribes to mourn their dead. (Complete Review 5 in packet)

The war is now three years old, and Britain and France are fighting this war on several fronts including North America, Asia, Germany and Africa. Whoever wins this battle shall control the largest empire since Rome. It is also important to understand that British colonists outnumber French colonists 18:1, but they lacked the support of the Native Americans. The flames of hatred between England and France had gone on for years, dating all the way back to The Hundred Years War, but had currently been re-fanned by a religious rivalry as well. In Britain, King George II was a protestant declaring his kingdom’s official church to be that of Anglican. Just across the English Channel, French King Louis XV remained a staunch Catholic.

William Pitt

In the English colonies at this time, the British are running out of money to continue the fight and are asking the colonies to help, but the colonies are slow to respond. Massachusetts is stating that Britain needs their consent to tax them. The colonist feared this war would bankrupt their governments and destroy their rights. William Pitt joins Parliament and promises to reimburse colonies for money they spend on the war. Pitt doubles British efforts to control the conflict against the French, and also sends the very best British generals to the colonies, who up to this point, had stayed in England, to lead the war effort.

In the meantime, George Washington is now twenty-five years old, and is commander of Virginia’s regiment in charge of protecting Virginia lands and colonists against Indian raids. A vast majority of the fighting however is far to the North, and Washington wants some of it. Washington pleads his case of misery in his current position to his superiors in the winter of 1757. He is denied a British commission, and sinks to his lowest point in his career. He has suffered two major defeats in his career already; Fort Necessity and Fort Duquesne. Washington also has Dysentery at this time, and thinks he also has Tuberculosis. Despite his repeated requests to be reassigned due to his health, he is ordered to stay on the western frontier. A few months later, in January 1758, Washington takes sick leave and returns to his home in Mount Vernon, where he meets a wealthy widow named Martha Dandridge Custis. Martha’s former husband, Daniel Parke Custis, had died in 1757. George also wins a seat in the Virginia House of Burgesses. Martha is the most wealthy woman in all of Virginia, and the two will marry just a year after their meeting on January 6, 1759.

The Battle of Ticonderoga

In 1757, Pitt decides to send a new commander to oversee the efforts in North America. British General, James Abercrombie brings 15,000 men and eighteen siege cannons from England. Abercrombie wants to bring down Montreal, but must first defeat Fort Ticonderoga which guards the water passage from Lake George to Lake Champlain. On July 5th, 1758, Abercrombie sets out for Ticonderoga with 1000 boats and over 16,000 men. At the time, Abercrombie’s forces outnumber the entire population of the city of Boston, which was the largest city in the colonies in 1758.

Abercrombie had learned that France had recently decided to begin to limit the number of military soldiers they were willing to ship from France to North America and decides to speed up his attack. He urges his men to speed up their crossing of Lake Champlain despite poor weather conditions. In his haste, eight of his siege cannons sink into the lake during their crossing.

Beginning on the evening of July 6, the French began to lay out entrenchments three-quarters of a mile away from the fort itself. These entrenchments or trenches built to hide in from enemy fire, made it difficult to surround the fort by the British. On July 7, they constructed a lengthy series of abatis (cut down trees with sharpened branches pointed outward) below these thenches. By the end of that day, they had also constructed a wooden breastwork (a wooden wall built about chest high) above the trenches. These hastily erected defenses, while defensive against small arms fire, would have been ineffective if the British had used cannons against them.

(Picture of an example of an abatis outside Fort Ticonderoga)

Montcalm’s defense is very effective and slows the British advance to a crawl due to twisted and sharpened timber. While Abercrombie had expected the battle to begin at 1 pm, by 12:30 parts of the New York regiments on the left began engaging the French defenders. The sounds of battle led another British commander to believe that the French line might have been penetrated, so he ordered his men forward, even though not all of the regulars were in place, and Abercrombie had not given an order to advance. The result, rather than an orderly, coordinated advance on the French position, was a disorganized entry of the soldiers into the battle. As companies of the soldiers came forward, they arranged themselves into lines as instructed, and then began to advance. The right column, with a shorter distance to travel, attacked first, followed by the center, and then the left. The 42nd had initially been held in reserve, but after insisting on being allowed to participate, they too joined the disorganized attack.

The French position was such that they were able to lay down fire on the British forces as they advanced, and the abatis (French for slaughterhouse) rapidly became a killing field. By about 2 pm, it was clear that the first wave of attack had failed. Montcalm was active on the battlefield, having removed his coat, and was moving among his men, giving encouragement and making sure all of their needs were being met. Abercrombie was reported to be well away from the action. It is uncertain why, after the first wave of attack failed, Abercrombie persisted in ordering further attacks.

Around 2 pm, the British barges carrying artillery floated down the La Chute River, and, against their plan, came down a channel between an island in the La Chute and the shore. This brought them within range of the fort's guns. Fire from cannons on the fort's southwest bastion's sank two of the barges, spurring the remaining vessels with the remaining cannon to retreat.

Abercrombie ordered his reserves, the Connecticut and New Jersey provincials, into the battle around 2:00, but by 2:30 it was clear their attack also failed. Abercrombie then tried to recall the troops, but a significant number persisted in the attack. Around 5 pm the 42nd made a desperate advance that actually succeeded in reaching the base of the French wall; those that actually managed to scale the breastwork were bayoneted. One British observer noted that "Our forces fell exceeding fast.", while another wrote that they were "cut down like grass". The slaughter went on until nightfall.

Finally realizing the scale of the disaster, Abercrombie ordered the troops to march down to the landing on Lake George. The retreat in the dark woods became somewhat panicked and disorganized, as rumors of French attacks swirled among the troops. By dawn the next morning, the army was rowing back up Lake George, reaching its base at the southern end around sunset. In the end, the British had lost 2000 troops, while the French had lost 380. The defeat is demoralizing and Britain is forced to retreat from Ticonderoga and Abercrombie’s reputation is greatly damaged. (Complete Review 6 at end of packet)

The Battle of Fort Frontenac (A Turning Point)

The Battle of Fort Frontenac took place on August 26th and 27th, 1758. The location of the battle was Fort Frontenac, a French fort and trading post which is located at the site of present-day Kingston, Ontario, at the eastern end of Lake Ontario where it meets the St. Lawrence River.

(Battle of Fort Frontenac)

British Lieutenant Colonel John Bradstreet led an army of over 3000 men, of which about 150 were soldiers and the remainder were militia. The army attacked the 110 French soldiers inside the fort and won their surrender two days later, cutting one of the two major communication and supply lines between the major eastern centers of Montreal and Quebec City and France's western territories. The British seized 800,000 pounds of goods from the trading post.

Bradstreet assembled an army at Schenectady, New York consisting of just 135 British troops and about 3,500 militia. By the time his army reached the ruins of Fort Oswego on August 21, Bradstreet had lost 600 men, primarily to desertion. The trek met with minimal opposition from French and Indian raiding parties, but the route to Oswego, which had been virtually unused since 1756, was overgrown, and some of the waterways had silted up. Bradstreet's troops crossed Lake Ontario, landing without opposition about one mile from Fort Frontenac on August 25.

Fort Frontenac was an important trading center for Indian and French fur traders. The trade through the site was so successful that some Indians preferred to trade with the French there rather than the British outpost at Albany, New York, which provided more access to inexpensive British goods. The fort, a crumbling limestone construction, was only guarded, with about 100 French troops along with some militia and Indians under the command of Pierre-Jacques de Chavoy. While the fort was normally guarded by a larger force, the limited means available for the defense of New France had forced French military leaders to reduce its size for the defense of other parts of Canada. When Fort Frontenac falls, it means Ticonderoga, Montreal’s supply base is gone. Supplies for Canada are gone as well.

The night after landing, Bradstreet's men established gun batteries and began to dig trenches toward the old fort. On the morning of August 26, the guns opened fire, to the surprise of the French. The British approach was so successfully executed that the French fleet, docked near the fort, was effectively trapped. After minimal resistance, Chavoy surrendered the next day. Only minimal casualties occurred due to the bombardment.

With the capture of Frontenac, the British intercepted significant supplies destined for French forts in the Ohio Country. More than sixty cannons (some of them British cannons the French had captured at Fort Oswego) were found, as were hundreds of barrels of provisions. To the many colonials in Bradstreet's army, the biggest prizes were bales of furs destined for shipment downstream to Montreal. As Bradstreet's orders were not to hold the fort but to destroy it, many of the provisions were burned before the army returned to Oswego, using some of the captured French ships to help carry the loot.

It is now nearing the end of 1758, and the man in charge of resupplying the French war efforts has a gambling problem. So he sells much of the French army’s needs on the black market in France and then helps himself to the money to pay off his gambling debts. By 1758 the French treasury is drained, and Louis XV wanted a European victory more than a North American victory. Montcalm keeps asking France for more money or troops when he finally gets his answer. One of the King’s ministers tells him, “When the house is on fire, one cannot occupy oneself with the stables.” Without money or supplies the French can no longer aid their Native American allies. Hunger begins to run rampant in Native American villages, and in 1758 small pox breaks out. (Complete Review 7 at end of packet)

The Battle for Fort Quebec (France’s dominance ends)

(Assault on Fort Quebec, to Plains of Abraham above)

It is summer, 1759. James Wolfe’s troops are camped on the opposite shore of Quebec but cannot draw Montcalm to battle after three months. Quebec is high on a triangle of land with water on two sides. Wolfe is frustrated by the fact that Montcalm will not come out of the fort to face him, so instead orders British troops to burn French settlements beyond Quebec in an attempt to draw Montcalm out. 1400 homes are burned, with no response from within the fort. The British then begin to shell the city of Quebec for six weeks. Wolfe contracts “the fever” as do his men. By the end of summer, 1/3 are unfit to serve. Wolfe is afraid he may die soon, and his failure will bring him disgrace. He is obsessed with finding a way to fall the fort before he dies. He finds a narrow foot path up a steep rocky cliff to the plains, east of Quebec. At night 4,500 men scale the steep cliff in five hours, and assemble on the Plains of Abraham. At dawn the British attack, and it is overwhelming. The entire battle lasts no more than ten minutes on the plains. The French retreat to the fort, and four days later surrender.

Death of Wolfe Death of Montcalm

Wolfe is injured in the wrist and chest during the battle. When asked if he needs a surgeon, he says, “It is pointless; it is all over for me.” Montcalm is hit in the abdomen and dies not on the field, but in a doctor’s office. Montcalm’s successful run in North America has ended, thanks to both a lack of French monetary support form home, and a growing separation from the French and their once trusted allies, the Native Americans. (Complete Review 8 at end of packet)

The Fall of Montreal (The Last French hold-out)

After the fall of Québec in September 1759, Montreal was the sole remaining French power center in Canada. The city was located along the St. Lawrence River, not far from the Ottawa River. The island’s most prominent feature was Mont-Royal, a hill that rose more than 600 feet above the water. It had been visited by Jacques Cartier in 1535 and Samuel de Champlain in 1603.

In 1759, the Iroquois have aligned with the British after fifty years of neutrality. In the summer of 1760, the British plan to take the last French city of Montreal. To do this, they have to navigate white water rapids of the St. Lawrence River. The British must also be careful of the Canadian Mohawk who are aligned with the French. As the British travel down the river, they send Iroquois to ask Canadian Mohawk to stay neutral. The British owe their success to them. Jeffrey Amherst, the new British commander, hates the Iroquois, but decides he can use them as shields against French bullets.

Jeffrey Amherst

British General Jeffrey Amherst occupied Fort Ticonderoga and Crown Point in the fall of 1759, but was unable to meet up with James Wolfe at Québec as planned. Instead, Amherst went into winter quarters in October and remained inactive until the following spring. At that time, a three-pronged offensive was put in motion with armies under Amherst, General James Murray, and Colonel William Haviland converging on Montreal.

With the city surrounded, the French had no viable options. Vaudreuil de Cavagnal surrendered on September 8, 1760, which ended the last major campaign of the French and Indian War in North America.

Pontiac’s War ~ For Honor

Jeffrey Amherst is now in charge of the colonies, and Britain can now turn its attention to the Seven Years’ War. Britain takes French territory in Africa and India. Spain aligns with France and war spreads to Spanish holdings in the Philippines.

In 1761, Amherst decides to restrict ammunition to the Native Americans and ends a long standing policy and tradition of gift giving to save money. Gift giving had been an important part of the relationship between the French and the tribes of the pays d'en haut. Following a Native American custom that carried important symbolic meaning, the French gave presents (such as guns, knives, tobacco, and clothing) to village chiefs, who in turn redistributed these gifts to their people. By this process, the village chiefs gained stature among their people, and were thus able to maintain the alliance with the French. Amherst, however, considered this process to be a form of bribery that was no longer necessary, especially since he was under pressure to cut expenses after the war with France. Many Native Americans regarded this change in policy as an insult and an indication that the British looked upon them as conquered people rather than as allies. Amherst himself, plans to make the Native Americans (instead of allies) “subjects” of the crown. Native Americans also see the British building a new fort in Pittsboro, despite the Treaty of Easton promising no new settlement beyond the Allegheny.

Pontiac's War was a war that was launched in 1763 by a loose confederation of Native American tribes primarily from the Great Lakes region, the Illinois Country, and Ohio Country who were dissatisfied with British policies in the Great Lakes region after the British victory in the French and Indian War (1754–1763). Warriors from numerous tribes joined the uprising in an effort to drive British soldiers and settlers out of the region. The war is named after the Ottawa leader Pontiac, the most prominent of many native leaders in the conflict.

The war began in May 1763 when Native Americans, offended by the policies of British General Jeffrey Amherst, attacked a number of British forts and settlements. Eight forts were destroyed, and hundreds of colonists were killed or captured, with many more fleeing the region. Hostilities came to an end after British Army expeditions in 1764 led to peace negotiations over the next two years. Native Americans were unable to drive away the British, but the uprising prompted the British government to modify the policies that had provoked the conflict.

Under Amherst, the British lose all but three of their forts in the backcountry. At the same time of the attack, retired George Washington pens a land grant of 4000 square miles that stretches well past the Alleghenies into Indiana. Pontiac’s war continues, and Native Americans take many captives. Jeffrey Amherst is forced to do something. He considers sending Small Pox in blankets to wipe out the Native American populations, and does so. However, the Native Americans are already being destroyed by the disease. Jeffrey is unable to keep order, and on November 17, 1763 is ordered back to Britain.

In western Pennsylvania, on December 14, fifty vigilantes known as The Paxton Boys attack a Conestoga tribe. The Conestogas have always been peaceful farmers. They find only six Native Americans in the camp. They track down fourteen who had escaped and kill all, scalping the children for effect. The Paxton Boys vow to kill every Native American in Pennsylvania. A treaty is struck, and Native American captives are to be returned. The king of England offers a bounty for the return of English captives. Many though, after years of living with the Native Americans, do not want to go back.

Warfare on the North American frontier was brutal, and the killing of prisoners, the targeting of civilians, and other atrocities were widespread. The ruthlessness and treachery of the conflict was a reflection of a growing racial divide between British colonists and Native Americans. The British government looked to prevent further racial violence by issuing the Royal Proclamation of 1763, which created a boundary between colonists and Native Americans.

The king in an attempt to govern all his new land creates the Royal Proclamation of 1763 stating all lands west of the Appalachians is reserved for the Native Americans. Colonials had been fighting for access to the Ohio River Valley and now the land they thought they were fighting for is off limits and reserved for Native Americans. This proclamation by Britain also ruins George Washington’s 4000 acre plans. As a reward for their service in the French and Indian War, colonial soldiers were promised land by Britain. The Proclamation of 1763 has greatly reduced the reality of that promise. This proved unpopular with British colonists, and may have been one of the early steps to the American Revolution. (Complete Review 9 at end of packet)

In time, the colonies would have to decide what was going to suit them best.

Review 1:

  1. What year did Cabot first sail for England?

  2. What year did France first send an expedition to America?

  3. What year did England first create a “successful” colony? Where was it located?

  1. What year did France create a “successful” colony? Where was it located?

Review 2:

Define: Half King, Six Nations,

  1. What year does the French and British conflict begin?

  2. Where does this conflict begin?

  3. What land will be the most contested in this war?

  4. What happens to The Half King’s and Washington’s trading post?

  1. Briefly explain how the French and Indian war begins.

  1. Why might Washington say the French cheated near Fort Necessity?

  1. Why is the date Washington surrenders Fort Necessity ironic?

Review 3:

  1. Who is selected by the British to capture Fort Duquesne?

  2. Near what modern city was Fort Duquesne located?

  3. Who will Braddock’s aide-to-camp be for this battle?

  1. What are the casualties for both sides at the battle near the Monongahela River?

Britain: French:

  1. After his death what kind of burial does Braddock receive?

Review 4:

  1. Which British commander is expected to capture Fort Saint-Frédéric?

  2. Where does French commander Baron Dieskau meet the British commander?

  1. What does the French commander do to demonstrate his unity with the Native Americans?

  1. Though not a true victory, what is Johnson forced to construct to hold the ground the British have gained?

  1. Where is Washington reassigned to, and what are his duties?

  1. How are Montcalm’s perceptions of the Native Americans different than previous French commanders’?

  1. Compare French colonial interactions with Native Americans to that of interactions between the British and Native Americans.

  1. Where do the French refugees from Acadia flee?

Review 5

  1. Which British fort does French commander, Montcalm mount an assault with 2000 Native Americans, and 6000 French troops?

  1. What were the French digging trenches for outside George Monroe’s fort?

  1. How many days was Fort William Henry under siege by the French?

  1. What did Webb, Monroe’s superior, suggest Monroe do?

  1. After the fall of Fort William Henry, what does Montcalm tell his Native American allies they cannot do?

  1. How does Montcalm further insult his Native American allies?

  1. As the French allow the British to leave the fort unharmed, briefly describe what the Native Americans do.

  1. How many British are killed, compared to the rumor of how many are killed?

Review 6

  1. Name 2 other territories the British and French are fighting for in the Seven Years War.

  1. Name 2 defeats Washington has suffered already.

  1. William ____________ , is now leading the British war effort. He fires Lauden and reimburses colonies for money spent on the war.

  1. In 1758, Abercrombie moves on Ticonderoga with how many men? Why is this number so overwhelming?

  1. What bad luck does Abercrombie suffer while preparing to attack Ticonderoga?

  1. Briefly describe how Montcalm slows Abercrombie’s advance to a crawl.

  1. What are British casualty rates versus French at Ticonderoga?

British_____________ French___________________

Review 7

  1. John Bradstreet uses what type of soldiers to help him defeat fort Frontenac?

  1. What issue does the man in charge of the French resupplies suffer from?

  1. Complete this statement….”When the house is on fire, one cannot occupy oneself with the ______________________.” What do you think this means?

Review 8

  1. British Commander James Wolfe is ordered to capture what final French holdout?

  1. How many weeks does Wolfe shell his opponent?

  1. Briefly describe how Wolfe surprises Montcalm?

  1. At the battle of Quebec, what happens to Montcalm and Wolfe?

    1. Montcalm:

    1. Wolfe:

Review 9

  1. They Iroquois now align themselves with whom after how many years of remaining neutral?

  1. As the British move on the last major French city of Montreal, why did they have to be cautious? Who do they owe their success to?

  1. What does Amherst do to break the trust many colonists had developed with the Native Americans?

  1. Briefly describe Pontiac’s War.

  1. In an act of desperation, what does Amherst do to battle the Native Americans? (hint…some would call it germ warfare.)

  1. Who are the Paxton boys, and what did they vow?

  1. Why do the English not get many of their captured family members back?

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