After the British captured Quebec, the French were never able to recover. By , the British controlled Montreal also.
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Once the British took Montreal, the fighting in North America was over. When the treaty was signed, the British were given control over the area west of the 13 colonies to the Mississippi River. There was no religious freedom, for example. So, many French people who belonged to Protestant churches settled in the British colonies. France also did not like the fact that the British paid the Indians high prices for animal furs.
France was more interested in the fur trade than in settling the land. The British hurt the French traders' business when they bought fur from the Indians. French colonies in North America, isolated from France by British domination of the seas, were left mostly to their own meager resources to carry out the French and Indian War. Wisconsin native tribes--including the Menominee, Ho-Chunk, Ojibwe, and Potawatomi--participated in military campaigns led by French army officer Charles de Langlade.
However, by the French had lost Quebec and Montreal to the British. However, the war "officially" ended in when Britain and France signed the Treaty of Paris in The British had won the French and Indian War. They took control of the lands that had been claimed by France see below. France lost its mainland possessions to North America.
Britain now claimed all the land from the east coast of North America to the Mississippi River. Everything west of that river belonged to Spain. France gave all its western lands to Spain to keep the British out.
Indians still controlled most of the western lands, except for some Spanish colonies in Texas and New Mexico. When the treaty was signed, the British were given control over the area west of the 13 British Colonies to the Mississippi River. Also, the French agreed to no longer support any colonies in North America, including all of the territory that is known as Canada. Since Spain had joined the war on the side of the French, the Spanish were also forced to give up their claim to Florida. The struggle for empire in North America would lead to even more wars, with dramatic effects on our state.
Shifts from French to British and finally to American control were carried out in a century of nearly continuous fighting among France, Britain, the US, and Native American nations. They fought for control of North America and the rich fur trade.
Background The French, who had a strong presence in the Great Lakes region early on, built a fort at Green Bay in to tighten their hold on the western Great Lakes. They became embroiled in a series of wars with the Meskwaki Fox Nation. The conflicts disrupted fur-trade routes along the critical Fox-Wisconsin waterway to the Mississippi. The French also developed a new route along the Maumee, Wabash, and Ohio rivers to bypass the western lakes.
This new trade route brought the French into sharper conflict with the British, whose colonists were seeking to claim the same areas.
Portugal led the others into exploration. Encouraged by Prince Henry the Navigator, Portuguese seamen sailed southward along the African coast, seeking a water route to the East. They were also looking for a legendary king named Prester John who had supposedly built a Christian stronghold somewhere in northwestern Africa. Henry hoped to form an alliance with Prester John to fight the Muslims. His school developed the quadrant, the cross-staff and the compass, made advances in cartography, and designed and built highly maneuverable little ships known as caravels.
Dias sailed around the tip of Africa and into the Indian Ocean before his frightened crew forced him to give up the quest. A year later, Vasco da Gama succeeded in reaching India and returned to Portugal laden with jewels and spices. Born in Genoa, Italy, around , Columbus learned the art of navigation on voyages in the Mediterranean and the Atlantic.
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Columbus, hoping to make such a voyage, spent years seeking a sponsor and finally found one in Ferdinand and Isabella of Spain after they defeated the Moors and could turn their attention to other projects. After ten weeks he sighted an island in the Bahamas, which he named San Salvador. Thinking he had found islands near Japan, he sailed on until he reached Cuba which he thought was mainland China and later Haiti. But the territorial disputes between Portugal and Spain were not resolved until when they signed the Treaty of Tordesillas, which drew a line leagues west of the Azores as the demarcation between the two empires.
Despite the treaty, controversy continued over what Columbus had found. He made three more voyages to America between and , during which he explored Puerto Rico , the Virgin Islands, Jamaica, and Trinidad. Each time he returned more certain that he had reached the East.
More Spanish expeditions followed. In and , Pedro de Mendoza went as far as present-day Buenos Aires in Argentina, where he founded a colony. As European powers conquered the territories of the New World, they justified wars against Native Americans and the destruction of their cultures as a fulfillment of the European secular and religious vision of the New World. That idea had two parts: one paradisiacal and utopian, the other savage and dangerous.
Ancient tales described distant civilizations, usually to the west, where European-like peoples lived simple, virtuous lives without war, famine, disease or poverty. Such utopian visions were reinforced by religious notions. Early Christian Europeans had inherited from the Jews a powerful prophetic tradition that drew upon apocalyptic biblical texts in the books of Daniel, Isaiah and Revelations.
They connected the Christianization of the world with the second coming of Christ. If secular and religious traditions evoked utopian visions of the New World, they also induced nightmares. The ancients described wonderful civilizations, but barbaric, evil ones as well. Moreover, late medieval Christianity inherited a rich tradition of hatred for non-Christians derived in part from the Crusaders' struggle to free the Holy Land and from warfare against the Moors. European encounters with the New World were viewed in light of these preconceived notions.
To plunder the New World of its treasures was acceptable because it was populated by pagans. In , Giovanni da Verrazzano was commissioned to locate a northwest passage around North America to India. He was followed in by Jacques Cartier , who explored the St. Lawrence River as far as present-day Montreal.
In , Jean Ribault headed an expedition that explored the St.
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Johns River area in Florida. But the Spanish soon pushed the French out of Florida, and thereafter, the French directed their efforts north and west. Instead, the French traded with inland tribes for furs and fished off the coast of Newfoundland. New France was sparsely populated by trappers and missionaries and dotted with military forts and trading posts.
Although the French sought to colonize the area, the growth of settlements was stifled by inconsistent policies.
Exploration of North America
Initially, France encouraged colonization by granting charters to fur-trading companies. Then, under Cardinal Richelieu, control of the empire was put in the hands of the government-sponsored Company of New France. The company, however, was not successful, and in the king took direct control of New France. Although more prosperous under this administration, the French empire failed to match the wealth of New Spain or the growth of neighboring British colonies.
The Dutch were also engaged in the exploration of America.
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Formerly a Protestant province of Spain, the Netherlands was determined to become a commercial power and saw exploration as a means to that end. In the newly formed New Netherland Company obtained a grant from the Dutch government for the territory between New France and Virginia. About ten years later another trading company, the West India Company, settled groups of colonists on Manhattan Island and at Fort Orange. The Dutch also planted trading colonies in the West Indies. By the mid-sixteenth century, however, England had recognized the advantages of trade with the East, and in English merchants enlisted Martin Frobisher to search for a northwest passage to India.
Between and Frobisher as well as John Davis explored along the Atlantic coast. Gilbert headed two trips to the New World. He landed on Newfoundland but was unable to carry out his intention of establishing military posts. By the seventeenth century, the English had taken the lead in colonizing North America, establishing settlements all along the Atlantic coast and in the West Indies.
Sweden and Denmark also succumbed to the attractions of America, although to a lesser extent. This colony was short-lived, however, and was taken over by the Dutch in Croix and other islands in the cluster of the Virgin Islands.