The Conquest

The Siege of Quebec

A Stalled Effort

This defeat caused concern in the camp of the frustrated British attackers. As the weeks went by, they could see failure on the horizon because they would have to lift the siege no later than October if they were to avoid winter. They nevertheless continued to shell Quebec, primarily in the hope of seriously damaging the fortifications, which had remained relatively untouched. Exasperated, Wolfe did something less than glorious, reminiscent of the terrible retribution he had meted out in Scotland 13 years earlier. He sent columns of soldiers to raze the Canadian countryside. At the end of August, they pillaged and burned approximately 1,100 houses, from Kamouraska to Lévis, sparing only the churches. But none of the devastation changed the fact that the siege of Quebec was hobbling along lamentably.