...[T]he surrender of New France proceeded without incident. On the morning of September 9 the remnants of the last ten battalions in North America lay down their arms, explaining that they had no colors to surrender because...those had all been so badly damaged in six years of campaigning that they had been forced to destroy them, Amherst, who knew perfectly well that it was a lie, looked the other way and spared Lévis further humiliation. In the end the flags of ten beaten regiments were of little consequence in comparison with the conquest of half a continent. He had done what he had come to do.
I just finished The War that Made America (the book, not the actual war). Not always an easy read, Fred Anderson's book helped me tie the French and Indian War to the Revolution in ways I had not previously understood. I was first introduced to the political climate of the French and Indian War when I attended last summer at the George Washington Teacher Institute at Mount Vernon, Virginia, but our time and focus for the week did not allow for all of the details of this war and its implications.
Here in the end, the French and Indian War starts to sound a bit like the other book I am reading for the Fort Ticonderoga Teacher Institute - The First World War. Coincidently, I just read in that other volume about some of the international law breaking during WWI.
The war's disruption of trade with France had left the planters of Guadeloupe (and indeed of the whole French West Indies) sitting on a mountain of worthless sugar, in a sea of unmerchantable molasses, with no supply of imports - slaves, manufactured goods, livestock, barrel staves, and provisions - that they needed to keep the local economy running. Conquest, paradoxically, solved the planters' problems. After less than a year of British occupation, Guadeloupe's economy was booming as planters shipped ten thousand tons of sugar to London merchants and bought thousands of slaves (imported from West African slaving stations that the Royal Navy had seized in 1758-1759) and vast quantities of manufactured goods from British suppliers in return...
But there was still another block to place in the foundation of the Revolution - another character in the cast, King George III.
...The heart attack that killed King George II on October 25, a little less than three weeks after the news arrived of Canada's capitulation, brought his twenty-two-year-old grandson to the throne as George III. The new king's father (Frederick Lewis, Prince of Wales) had died nine years before, as deeply alienated from George II as Hanoverian heirs typically were from their fathers. This meant that as he grew up the new monarch had formed his chosen political and emotional ties with courtiers and politicians who despised George II and all the political corruption and devotion to Hanover that he stood for. George's mother, Augusta, and his tutor, the earl of Bute, had encouraged him to see himself as a "patriot kin," who would rise above the petty factions of parliamentary politics and provide his nation with the kind of disinterested, virtuous leadership in needed to realize its destiny in the world. In 1760, to the new king this meant, above all, ending a war he saw as needless and destructive...
during the summer of 2019, follow the link to my Fort Ticonderoga page.