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An Offensive Against the Ohio Valley

Type: Document

In 1755, with an army built around his two regular regiments, General Braddock began an attack from Virginia into the Ohio Valley. The 200 kilometre advance towards Fort Duquesne was slowed by the need to build a road and bridges to carry the army through the difficult terrain.

Site: National Defence

Fears of French Fleets

Type: Document

France's 1778 entry into the American Revolutionary War spread fear in several places. The Maritimes worried about a French fleet disrupting shipping in the Gulf of St. Lawrence or attacking Newfoundland. In Quebec, officials worried about Canadian reaction to a French landing.

Site: National Defence

J.C.B. Goes to Canada

Type: Document

There is an eye-witness account of the life of a soldier recruited for the Troupes de la Marine in Canada. Joseph Charles Bonin, called 'J.C.B.' joined in 1751, bored with his life as a clerk. After a seasickness filled Atlantic crossing, J.C.B. reached Quebec.

Site: National Defence

A Colonial Way of War

Type: Document

During the 18th century, France held huge inland regions in North America with a few men for two reasons. First, land was largely controlled by trade alliances with local Amerindians. Second, tactics were used that combined indigenous methods with European organization and discipline.

Site: National Defence

The British Reach Montreal

Type: Document

In September 1760, British forces finally reached Montreal Island. Governor Vaudreuil and General Lévis withdrew their men inside the city walls.

Site: National Defence

Coteau-du-Lac National Historic Site of Canada: A Multi-Purpose Structure

Type: Document

The site at Coteau-du-Lac represented a major point of transit for British military logistics efforts. Between 1781 and 1814, the army developed large-scale infrastructures on the site, which testify to the importance the colonial authorities attached to improving and protecting transportation and communications along the route linking Montréal and Kingston.

Site: Parks Canada

Embarkation of the régiment suisse de Karrer

Type: Image

A part of the régiment suisse de Karrer, a Swiss mercenary unit in French pay, is shown taking ship for Louisbourg. These German-speaking troops formed part of the fortress’ garrison between 1722 and 1745.

Site: National Defence

The Military Shift Westwards

Type: Document

By the end of the 17th Century, Montreal had replaced Quebec as the military centre of Canada. At the hub of several inland waterways, it became the centre of a military expansion west and south. A series of forts were built on the Great Lakes to protect French interests.

Site: National Defence

Panoramic view of Louisbourg in August 1744

Type: Image

This view of the harbour at Louisbourg in the summer of 1744 gives an idea of how busy the port could be. Both merchant ships and warships (at right) can be seen. In the background, the lighthouse is visible at the entrance to the port and a cloud of smoke rises from a careened ship. In the foreground, members of the fortress garrison can be seen at work around the guardhouse. Reconstruction by Lewis Parker. (Parks Canada)

Site: National Defence

Desertion

Type: Document

Desertion to the king's enemies was considered the most serious crime a soldier could commit. It did take place in New France, but at a much lower rate than in Europe because of the difficulties posed by the country separating New France from the British colonies

Site: National Defence