January 1, 1756 - The Seven Year’s War
By Garrett Jay
One of the largest conflicts between opposing countries in North America was the Seven Years War between the French and British. These two countries did not get along during this time period and many conflicts, particularly in North America caused this war to erupt. The Seven Years War began in 1756 and did not end until 1763. In the 1750’s, before the war began, France expanded to the Ohio River valley. This expansion caused tension with the British and their colonies on the Eastern side of America. There was a lot of tension since at the time, the Ohio River valley was unclaimed territory where both the French and British wanted to expand. This conflict created the Seven Years War mainly between those two countries. However, many Native American tribes favored France over Britain due to Britain’s expansion of the colonies which allowed France to ally with the Native Americans and fight against the British.
Over time, Britain faced defeats against France but eventually, things began to change. In 1757 the British would grow with the help of the British Prime Minister William Pitt. Pitt realized that with a victory over the French, the British colonies could expand significantly throughout North America. With the goal to defeat France and claim their land, Pitt was able to help aid Prussia and their struggle against France back in Europe. Along with Prussia and Britain working together, allies of France were fighting against Prussia in Europe. These allies consisted of Austria, Sweden, Saxony, Spain, and Russia. Pitt also aided the colonies in order to get more troops to fight against France in North America. These orders and change of events altered the outcome of the war and gave Britain an advantage which later, in 1763, gave Britain victory over the French.
In February of 1763 the war concluded by the signing of the treaty of Paris as well as the treaty of Hubertusburg. These treaties ended the war but also took all of Frances land in North America. This included Canada and the Ohio River Valley as well as all their land east of the Mississippi. Louisiana was given to Spain and gave Florida, Upper Canada, and other French territories to Britain which expanded their country even more. However, with war comes problems. Britain was in a lot of debt due to aiding their allies as well as fighting in the war. In order to pay off the debt, the British taxed the colonists which was one of the causes for the American Revolution. Also, because of Frances lost, this weakened their economy and monarchy which ultimately led to the French Revolution beginning in 1789. The Seven Years War is important to history since it created so many problems for many countries. It also was a large reason for Americas independence as well as the French Revolution.
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