Chapter 3: Security and the Final Years of New France, 1713 – 1763

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Chapter 3: Security and the Final Years of New France, 1713 – 1763
1. Why was New France is such a difficult military position in the 1750’s?

  • New France was surrounded by British-controlled territory on all sides, so it was hard to defend.

  • France had lost Acadia in 1713, which made the situation worse.

  • France had built a fortress to protect New France at Louisbourg (now Cape Breton Island), but it was ineffective because of frequent bad weather.

  • Once the British captured Louisbourg (1758), New France lay open to invasion.

2. Why did France give up Acadia while keeping the Caribbean islands of Guadaloupe and Martinique during peace treaty negotiations between Britain and France after the War of the Spanish Succession?

  • Each side (Britain and France) both agreed to give back some of the colonies it had captured in the war. Britain offered to return either Acadia or Guadeloupe and Martinique. Those islands grew sugar, which was a very valuable item in Europe; so, France agreed to keep them and give up Acadia, thinking it could still get furs from New France. So, in 1713, Acadia became a British colony except for the island that is known now as Cape Breton. France, at the time called it Ile Royale.

3. How did the British treat the Acadians after they captured Acadia from France in 1713, and how did the Acadians respond?

  • The British required the Acadians to take an oath of allegiance (statement of loyalty) to the British king, who was Protestant; the Acadians, who were Roman Catholic, refused to take the oath.

  • The British soldiers harassed the Acadians for petty reasons.

  • Between 1755 and 1760, the British expelled about 10,000 of the 12,000 Acadians.

  • Many Acadians went to the French colony of Louisiana. (Today the city of New Orleans is known around the world for its “Cajun” – an altered form for the word Acadian – food and culture.)

4. Key events that were part of the British strategy to capture Quebec in 1759:

  • British attack the Beauport Shore (suffering severe losses).

  • British pretended to be planning another attack on the “Beauport Feint.”

  • Soldiers climb the Anse-au-Foulon path to the Plains of Abraham.

  • Soldiers form the “Thin Red Line.”

  • Soldiers hold fire until advancing French soldiers are about 70 metres away.

5. The French seemed to be in the stronger position. They were in a walled city high above the river. The British were in ships on the river, and winter was approaching. Why did the British win the Battle?

  • General Wolfe surprised the French, who was expecting him to attack the Beauport shore. Montcalm decided he had to dislodge the British from the Plains. (Food was scarce in Quebec because of the British blockade.) Rushing the French defenders back to the Plains from Beauport stretched their lines. The British were close together and disciplined. They cut the French down with rapid rifle fire.

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