French and Indian War Changed America and the World’s Fate

The French and Indian War changed the fate of America by initiating questions over Britain’s authority to restrict westward movement into the western frontier of the Ohio River Valley (The Proclamation of 1763) and began the increase of taxes on the colonies to pay for the cost of this North American military struggle. — John Fitz.

The colonists feared their supposed allies the British as much as they did the French. British troops looked down on the colonists, sneered at them, stole from them, demanded that they provide free housing, engaged in lewd behavior toward colonial women, acted quite tyrannical. Major General Edward Braddock, commander of the 13 colonies,  who ultimately lost his life on a disastrously-planned expedition against the French in the Ohio Valley,  did not impress the colonists. While staying in Alexandria, Virginia as a guest of Carlyle House, the owner John Carlyle found him “very Indolent, Slave to his Passions, Women & Wine, As Great an Epicure as could be in his Eateing.” Braddock “abused my house, & furniture, & made me little or No Satisfaction,” Carlyle wrote.

Americans did most of the fighting, and dying, for the British. William Pitt the Elder, Britain’s Secretary of State, promised that England would pay the colony’s war debts. That promise was broken, and the colonists were stuck with the bill.

Crash Course: “In which John Green teaches you about the beginnings of the American Revolution in a video titled The Seven Years War. Confusing? Maybe. John argues that the Seven Years War, which is often called the French and Indian War in the US, laid a lot of the groundwork for the Revolution. More confusing? Why does this war have two names? Why were the French and Indians fighting each other? The Seven Years war was actually a global war that went on for nine years. I think I’m having trouble making this clear. Anyway, the part of this global war that happened in North America was the French and Indian War. The French and Indian tribes were the force opposing the British, so that’s the name that stuck. Let’s get away from this war, as it makes my head hurt. Other stuff was going on in the colonies in the 18th century that primed the people for revolution. One was the Great Awakening. Religious revival was sweeping the country, introducing new ideas about religion and how it should be practiced. At the same time thinkers like John Locke were rethinking the relationship between rulers and the ruled. So in this highly charged atmosphere, you can just imagine what would happen if the crown started trying to exert more control over the colonies. The colonists would probably just rise up, right? We’ll see what happens next week. Read the Mystery Document in its entirety in the Minutes of the Provincial Province of Pennsylvania Vol. IX: Hey teachers and students – Check out CommonLit’s free collection of reading passages and curriculum resources to learn more about the events of this episode. Learn about how the European struggle for dominance throughout the French and Indian War impacted natives in North America:…”

In Crash Course World History, John Green notes that the Seven Years War may have lasted nine years or as long as 23 years. “The Seven Years War was a global war, fought on five continents, which is kind of a lot. John focuses on the war as it happened in the Americas, Asia, and Africa. the “great” European powers were the primary combatants, but they fought just about everywhere. Of course, this being a history course, the outcomes of this war still resonate in our lives today. The Seven Years war determined the direction of the British Empire, and led pretty directly to the subject of Episode 28, the American Revolution.” Transcript.


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