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The French and Indian Wars were the last conflicts between the French and the English for control over New England. They were a series of four wars including the King Williams War, The Queen Annes War, The King Georges War, and the Seven-Year War all fought between the years of 1689 to 1763. These Wars took place in Europe and America between the British and the French. None of the wars were directly fought between the French and the Indians. They were actually between the French and the English and their various allies. King Williams War was fought in New England; it was part of a much larger battle in Europe between the French alliance (France and Spain) and the Great alliance (Great Britain, The Netherlands, and the Holy Roman Empire). King William's War was the first of the four North American wars.
England and France fought between 1689 and 1763. The fights took place mainly in the region of the Kennebec River of Maine in the east and the Connecticut River in the west; although some of it took place back in Europe. The French and English colonists and their Indian allies raided each other's settlements, with the massacre of many people. they approach like foxes, fight like lions, and disappear like birds The World Book Encyclopedia, Vol. 10, pg. 190 when they attack. After many English Raids in northern New England and Canada, the French governor of Canada, Comte de Frontenac, planned to attack on New York City and Boston in 1690.
As initial steps in his campaign, the French and their Indian allies burned Schenectady, N.Y. and Salmon Falls, NH. Then moved forth to destroy Fort Loyal, Maine, while French privateers based in Nova Scotia stopped New England shipping. The New England colonists raised an army of many and selected Sir William Phips, the new governor of Massachusetts, to be their commander. This army took control over Port Royal in Nova Scotia and unsuccessfully attacked Quebec. For the rest of the war the French and their Indian allies ravaged the northern frontiers of the English colonies. The Peace of Ryswick in 1697 restored Port Royal to the French but left the colonial problem unresolved. The battles continued into Queen Annes War.
The Second of the four wars was the Queen Annes War. It was pretty much a continuation of the King Williams War, and again half of the war was still being fought over in Europe between the French and the British. The Queen Annes War was the result of a worldwide trade rivalry between the American Colonists, France, and England. The Two main events of the Queen Annes war both occurred in the American colonies. They were the Capture and burning of St. Augustine, Florida by the British in 1702 and the burning of Deerfield, Massachusetts and the killing of nearly all the inhabitants of the town by the French and their allies the Indians in 1704.
Also, in America there were three unsuccessful expeditions in 1704 and 1707 by troops from New England against Port Royal, Acadia (Which is now known as Nova Scotia). The conquest of Acadia in 1710 by colonists supported by a squadron of British ships and commanded by the British colonial administrator Sir Francis Nicholson. The failure in 1711 of a large British and colonial joint military and naval expedition against Quebec and Montreal. The war was ended in 1713 by the Peace of Utrecht, which also brought to a close the War of the Spanish Succession. By terms of this treaty, the French ceded Acadia to the British, as well as Newfoundland and the Hudson Bay territory. The French retained Cape Breton Island. King George's War was the third of the four North American wars. Again, it was between the British and French over control of New England from 1744 to 1748.
During the period of peace after Queen Anne's War, conflicts arose between the French and British for control of North America. In 1744 the French captured and destroyed a British fort at Canso, Nova Scotia, and carried the prisoners to the French fortress of Louisbourg on Cape Breton Island. Governor William Shirley of Massachusetts appealed to the other colonies for aid because he was afraid of the French attacking. An army of about 4000 people was raised and placed under the control of Sir William Pepperell. In April 1745, the colonial troops sailed in British ships from Boston against Louisbourg. On June 15, after seven weeks of attack, the colonials captured the supposedly impenetrable fortress at Louisbourg. The next year France sent a fleet to retake Louisbourg and attack Boston, but the fleet was dissipated by a storm.
In 1747 a second fleet sent for the same purpose was intercepted and defeated by a British squadron. At the end of the war in 1748, Louisbourg was returned to the French by the Treaty of Aix-la-Chapelle, in return for British control of Madras, India The settlement disgruntled the colonists, and the British only partly placated the colonists by bearing the entire expense of the Louisbourg expedition. The question of colonial control was later resolved in the French and Indian. The Seven-Year war began with the struggle over the Ohio Valley. For more than a generation, the Iroquois Confederacy, an alliance of several Native American Nations from the Iroquois language family ruled a central ground between the French and the British colonies in North America. The Iroquois had gained control of a vast region in the interior of the continent by alliances with other Native American Tribes and had successfully kept the European countries out of this region.
The Iroquois were able to maintain their power over the British and the French until the 1740s when they began losing power when British traders who traveled deep into Ohio territory and made alliances with other Native American fur traders who had previously been controlled by the Iroquois. The Ohio Company had been granted 500,000 acres of land by the British King and wanted to get their settlers moved in. They encouraged the British to take control of the Ohio Valley. In 1753, George Washington at 21 years of age was sent out to send a message to the French warning them to clear out of the area. Within the next year a fort was built at the forks of the Monongahela and Allegheny rivers, which later became the site of Pittsburgh. The territory that the British had claimed quickly led to violence. An armed group of Virginians under the control of George Washington soon defeated a troop of French. They built a small fort now known as Fort Necessity.
The French brought back more troops and Washington was forced to surrender. The date was July 4, 1754. The French sent Washington back to Virginia. The Seven-Year War had begun. The French and Indian War lasted nearly nine years. It took place in three distinct phases. During the first of these phases, from the Fort Necessity surrender in 1754 until the expansion of the war to Europe in 1756, it was mainly in New England. The English did not do well the first years.
There were few British naval reinforcements and so the colonists managed the war largely on their own. For the most part, all Indian tribes were now allied with the French. Only the Iroquois had seen themselves forced to the British side and they kept themselves as neutral as possible. The second phase of the war began in 1756 when the governments of France and England formally opened hostilities and a truly international conflict the seven-year war in England began. The fighting now spread to the West West Indies, India and Europe itself. The most important part of the war remained the one in New England where so far England had suffered nothing but frustration and defeat.
Beginning in 1757, William Pitt, the English secretary of state, began to help the war effort by bringing it for the first time fully under British control. He did this at first by forcing supplies, equipment, shelter, and manpower from the colonists. This was cause for much hate and anger among the colonists, who resisted these new rules, and at times even violently resisted them. By early 1758, the friction between the British authorities and the colonists was threatening to bring the war effort to a stop. Beginning in 1758, Pitt initiated the third and final phase of the war by relaxing many of the policies that Americans had objected to. This resulted in an immediate increase in American support for the war and a dramatic increase in American enlistment. Pitt also dispatched large numbers of additional troops.
Almost immediately the tide of the battle began to turn in England's favor. The French, now even more outnumbered then before and tortured by poor harvests, could no longer offer enough resistance to the British troops and American troops. In July 1758, the fortress of Louisbourg was captured by two brilliant English generals, Jeffrey Amherst and James Wolfe. On September 13 1759, the city of Quebec fell to the army of General James Wolfe. This marked the beginning of the end of the American phase of the war. A year later, in September 1760, the French army finally surrendered to Amherst in Montreal. The French and Indian War had many effects for both the British Empire and the American colonists.
It is often seen as the source of much of the resentment between the English government and the colonists that eventually led to the American Revolution of 1775 Bibliography:.
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