On this day in 1756, The French and Indian War officially begins after England declares war on France. Although numerous ongoing battles had been fought for years previously, war was not formally declared until 1756. In the early 1750’s, small skirmished scattered throughout Europe and North America instigated a costly and deadly war, which grew to include every European power (except for Ottoman Empire) and span five continents and seven years. For the British colonies in America, the war had a severe impact, which would later spur on another war- The American Revolution.
Two years prior to declaring war, the British had attacked disputed French lands in North America and seized French merchant shops. The following seven years resulted in civil strife and unrest for the British colonial subjects as the Native Americans formed alliances with the French. England was falling behind and needed more money to fund the global expansion into the wild North American territories.
British Prime Minister William Pitt borrowed a significant amount necessary to win the war. As a result, France was forced to give up land in Canada and Louisiana. The accumulation of mass territory was a great victory for England. Now the 13 British colonies in America would be safe from bordering enemies. A new, unforeseen problem surfaced, however. Now that the war was over, England needed to repay the expenses incurred. Instead of finding viable solutions, Parliament passed on the debt to the British colonists by taxing them incessantly, which ironically, started another war-The American Revolution.
Nearly 15 years following The French and Indian War, the Patriots sought to overthrow the tyrannical British crown. Remembering their rival, France sought revenge on England by aiding the Patriots in the fight for independence. Without the help from the French, the colonist might have lost the war. Every thought and action has a consequence- had England not won the French and Indian war, we still might be British subjects!
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