The Seven Years' War in North America A Brief History with Documents

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  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 8/9/2013
  • Publisher: Bedford/St. Martin's

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This volume reveals how the Seven Years’ War reshaped the geopolitical map of North America and the everyday lives of the peoples within it. The introduction surveys the war as both an international struggle for empire and an intercultural conflict involving Native Americans, French and British soldiers, and the ethnically and religiously diverse population of British North America. A rich collection of primary-source selections recaptures the experience of the war from multiple perspectives and is organized by key cultural, military, and diplomatic themes. Document headnotes, a chronology, questions to consider, and a bibliography enrich students’ understanding of this momentous conflict.

Author Biography

Timothy J. Shannon teaches Early American, Native American, and British history at Gettysburg College in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. He is the author of several books, including Iroquois Diplomacy on the Early American Frontier (2008) and Indians and Colonists at the Crossroads of Empire: The Albany Congress of 1754 (2000), which won the Dixon Ryan Fox Prize from the New York State Historical Association and the Distinguished Book Award from the Society of Colonial Wars.  His articles have appeared in the William and Mary Quarterly, the New England Quarterly, and Ethnohisto.

Table of Contents




What’s in a Name?

The French and British Empires in North America

Native American Confederacies

The Origins of the Seven Years’ War

The French Ascendant, 1756-1757

The British Ascendant, 1758-1760

Uncertain Victory, 1761-1763

Legacies of the Seven Years’ War in North America


1. Empires, Indians, and Colonists

1. Pierre-Joseph Céleron, Onontio in the Ohio Country, 1749

2. Roland-Michel Barrin de La Galissonière, A French Colonial Official Sizes Up the British, 1751

3. Archibald Kennedy, A British Colonial Official Sizes Up the French, 1754

4. Richard Peters, Tensions between Squatters and Indians, 1750

5. William Trent, The Fur Trade Turns Violent, 1752

6. Philip Reading, An Anglican Minister Warns of the French Catholic Peril in North America, 1755

2. The Fog of War in the Ohio Country, 1753-1755

7. George Washington, Encounter with the French, 1753

8. George Washington, Skirmish at Jumonville’s Glen, May 1754

9. Maryland Gazette, Surrender at Fort Necessity, July 1754

10. British Officer, Disaster on the Monongahela, July 1755

11. Shingas, A Delaware Chief Explains Why the Indians Went to War, 1755

3. American Ways of War

12. Pierre Pouchot, Siegecraft at Fort Niagara, 1759

13. Christian Frederick Post, Delaware Indians Explain How They Fight, 1758

14. Pennsylvania Gazette, The Raid on Kittanning, 1756

15. Charlotte Brown, A Woman’s Perspective on Army Life, 1755-1756

16. David Perry, A New England Soldier at Ticonderoga, 1758

17. Robert Rogers, An American Ranger Sets Down His Rules of War, 1766

4. Captivity and Redemption

18. Marie le Roy and Barbara Leininger, Two Captives from Penn’s Creek, 1755-1756

19. Mary Jemison, A Captive’s Adoption into a Seneca Family, 1758

20. James Smith, Turning a Captive into an Indian, 1755

21. William Smith, Redeeming Captives in the Ohio Country, 1764

5. Diplomacy

22. Louis Antoine de Bougainville, French Negotiations with Indians from the Pays d’en Haut, 1756

23. Christian Frederick Post, A Missionary Conducts Diplomacy in the Ohio Country, 1758

24. Henry Timberlake, A Virginian Military Officer Serves as a Diplomat and Hostage among the Cherokees, 1761

25. William Johnson, A British Diplomat Extends the Covenant Chain Westward, 1761

6. Savagery and Civility

26. Pierre Roubaud, A French View of the Fort William Henry Massacre, 1757

27. James Fenimore Cooper, An American Novelist Describes the Fort William Henry Massacre, 1826

28. Henry Bouquet and Jeffery Amherst, Two British Officers Discuss Using Smallpox as a Weapon, 1763

29. Benjamin Franklin, An Anti-Paxton Boys Pamphlet, 1764

30. Matthew Smith and James Gibson, The Paxton Boys Defend Their Actions, 1764

7. Prophecies and Legacies

31. Henri-Marie Dubreil de Pontbriand, The Bishop of Quebec Describes the Suffering of the City, 1759

32. Jonathan Mayhew, A New England Minister Gives Thanks for the Fall of Quebec, 1759

33. An Argument for Returning Canada to the French, 1760

34. Benjamin Franklin, An Argument against Restoring Canada to the French, 1760

35. Neolin, A Delaware Prophet’s Vision for Renewing Indian Power, 1763


A Chronology of Events Related to the Seven Years’ War in North America (1748-1763)

Questions for Consideration

Selected Bibliography


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