1689 - 1754
England, France, and Spain went to war four times between
1689 and 1754.
Their North American colonies were active participants.
English colonies in the South fought with the Spanish in
Florida and the Caribbean Sea.
English colonies in the north fought with the French in Quebec
and the Great Lakes region.
The trouble with Ohio
• 1607 – Britain claims Virginia. According to the
British, this claim included the Ohio River
• 1699 – Sieur de La Salle claims the Mississippi
River “and all its tributaries” for France. Since
the Ohio River is a tributary of the Mississippi,
France insists that the Ohio River Valley is
The French build Fort Duquesne at the origin point of the Ohio
River, blocking English access into the Ohio River Valley.
The Virginia colonial government sends 21 year-old militia
officer George Washington and a small force to tell the
French to leave.
When France refuses, Washington builds a small fort to
establish an English presence.
During a routine patrol, Washington orders his men to fire on
a group of French soldiers. By doing so, he sparks a world war
between England and France.
British General Braddock is sent with a professional army to
capture the Fort and establish British control over the Ohio
Stalemate and surrender
The British soon discover that the war will be much longer and
brutal than anticipated. After while, a stalemate sets in,
where neither side gains nor loses anything.
In 1760, the British launch a major offensive resulting in the
capture of Montreal and Quebec. Spain also declares war on
Britain, but too late to do any good.
France, out of money and options, surrenders all of New
France to the British. The British now control all of North
America east of the Mississippi River.
France gives Louisiana to Spain as compensation for losing
Florida to the British.
Issues in 1763
Britain controls a massive empire that must be maintained
A military presence must be kept in North America because
while France may have surrendered, many of her Indian Allies
To win the war, Britain borrowed massive amounts of money
that now has to be paid back.
Additionally, the average British citizen in Britain paid 25
times more taxes than the average Colonial citizen.
The Solution to the Indian conflicts
To keep Indian conflicts
down, King George III
issues the Proclamation of
1763, which forbids
further British settlement
west of the Appalachian
Solving the money problem
• 1764 – Sugar Act. Parliament taxes all sugar and
molasses imported into the colonies.
– Quartering Act. Colonial governments would be
required to pay for and provide housing and
provisions to British soldiers in America.
• 1765 – Stamp Act. Parliament taxes all
newspapers, almanacs, books, property titles,
wills, playing cards, dice, legal contracts, and a
lot of other things.