Empires Collide: The French and Indian War 1754-63 by Ruth Sheppard

By Ruth Sheppard

The battle of the French-Indian conflict used to be assorted, starting from savage struggle within the forests and plains of the North American frontier to urban sieges and open battles. The British military struggled with the terrain and the strategies of the opposing American Indians. because the struggle advanced, the British military discovered from their allies, initiated reforms and finally triumphed over the French and Canadians. the consequences of this clash reached internationally, contributing to the outbreak of the Seven Years' battle in Europe and at the Indian subcontinent. This hugely illustrated publication charts the campaigns of the struggle, detailing the several troops raised and concerned, the evolving strategies, the fortresses and battles.

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They were fierce and outstanding bush fighters and raiders who could move very fast in the wilderness during any season with almost incredible endurance. As they handled guns from childhood, many were outstanding marksmen with their favorite weapon, the lightweight and dependable smoothbore hunting and trade musket made in Tulle, France. A key difference between the Canadian militia and the militias of the American colonies was that the former operated under a highly effective central command system: whatever the governor-general decided was the order of the day.

In peacetime some units looked more like settlers than soldiers, even before discharge. The companies were scattered as garrisons and escorts all over the frontiers of the settled areas, often far out in the wilds. There was little to do of a military nature, and before Governor-General Duquesne tightened discipline it appears that many of the officers were mostly concerned with fur-trading. Some of the officers and men of the more isolated commands "went native," and adopted certain aspects of American Indian customs which did not endear them to the regular troops, who considered them, at best, provincia~.

Only in 1740 were two companies organized at Louisbourg, four more, and perhaps as many as seven, being organized during the 1745 siege. Port Toulouse also had a company. There is little evidence of a sustained organization between 1749 and 1758, although numerous townsmen assisted the regulars in the 1758 siege of Louisbourg. 40 r:()R ENC()UNTER A CHARMING FIELD FOR AN ENCOUNTER FORT NECESSITY, 1754 F ollowing the building of the French Fort Duquesne, Washington and Dinwiddie made alternative plans to conquer the Ohio Valley.

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