French and Indian War
The French and Indian War took place between 1754 and 1763 in British North America and French North America. These are now the United States and Canada. The French had Native American allies and the British had other Indian allies. The war is also called "the Seven Years' War".
The conflict was a part of the Seven Years' War among the European great powers including Britain and France, which took place in various parts of the world. France was already fighting Prussia, and did not send many troops to Canada.
- Both the British and the French said they owned the Ohio country. This land was between the Appalachian Mountains and the Mississippi River, from the Great Lakes to the Ohio River. France wanted to unite New France, and Britain wanted to prevent that. Both wanted to control the fur trade, and expected to send settlers some day.
- Both European countries used Native American claims to the land. The British said it belonged to their Iroquois Indians, and the French said it belonged to their Hurons. Neither side asked what the people of the Ohio Country might want. The land supported the beaver pelt.
- The British 13 colonies feared control of a pope in North America. France's land was controlled by the French and the Roman Catholic Church. The Protestant British settlers saw this as a threat to their religious freedoms that they had under English law.
The French built a new fort in the disputed territory, and the British decided to expel them. Fighting began with the Battle of Monongahela in 1755. The British commander, General Edward Braddock, died with many of his men in a failed attack against the French in what later became Pittsburgh. Militia officer George Washington led the defeated survivors home.
In the Battle of the Plains of Abraham, the British conquered Canada.
The war ended with the signing of the Treaty of Paris on February 10, 1763. France lost all of its North American lands east of the Mississippi River. All of Canada was given to Britain except the small islands of Saint Pierre and Miquelon, near Newfoundland. Britain offered France the choice to give up its Canadian land or the Caribbean islands of Guadeloupe and Martinique, which British troops had taken during the war. France chose to keep the islands, which were valuable for their sugar plantations.
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