Battle of the Plains of Abraham

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Discipline:
Social Studies
Subject:
American History
Grade:
7

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Battle of the Plains of Abraham

Before the final attack in the Plains of Abraham, the British had thought of many plans of how to capture and defeat the French. Since the fact the British were unable to defeat the strong French army in Europe, they saw this colony as a new chance. Britain saw this as a great chance to capture New France for the colony’s land that could bring them great wealth. These following events are the things that had happened before the great battle in the Plains of Abraham.

Major British General: James Wolfe (1727 - 1759) - Guarded fortress, atop a the peek of a high cliff - Was not able to get his soldiers behind fortress to cut off all the life supplies - French help was slowly on its way- Few weeks before cold winter would arrive, meaning for the British to leave

Not only were the curious thoughts of the First Nations, Acadians and Canadiens filling up their worries for the running of this colony, but also the British worried. They were found worrying over the thought of how they were to rule a colony with over 70,000 French-speaking Canadiens. How they were to rule over a colony full of Canadiens who were so used to a different form of government and laws. Not only were those thoughts of how the British were to rule a colony in that environment, but also they worried of how to befriend those First Nations. Now it may have sounded easy to just become friends with those First Nations, but it was way more complicated than that. it was already hard enough to try to at least being loyal to those who went against them in war, trading was tuff too. so imagine trying to befriend those who more likely hates you and wanted to defeat you in war.    The new rules and ruling would take some getting used to, for all of these groups had their own separate thoughts and worries. Worries from cultural rights to creating alliances, either way it was not just going to be some walk in the park. It would be a tuff challenge in this time of history, but it is how Canada came to be.

Events Leading up to the Battle

Groups Involved in the Battle

Capturing of Louisbourg

The Outcome of the Battle

Outcome of the Battle

In June 1758, a number of 160 British warships had appeared on the harbor of Louisbourg. The British’s plan was to strike Louisbourg first, knowing it would lead them straight to Québec. But not only did this strong fortress lead to Québec, but also lead to the French’s only way of getting life supplies; the St. Lawrence River. With all the British ships eventually cutting off the line of life supplies (St. Lawrence River), Louisbourg was slowly crumbling and in the midst of ruins. The supplies shortened in the fortress, walls crumbed after the daily cannon fired, and no help from any French fleets had arrived. After several weeks of this daily cannon and starving people, it left the governor of Louisbourg no choice. In July of 1758, Augustin de Drucour (the Louisbourg governor) had decided after two struggling months, to surrender. Now it was only a certain amount of time until the British would capture Québec, after the fall of Louisbourg. As in 1759, James Wolfe led his troops upward to Québec with about 200 ships carrying 9,000 soldiers and 18,000 sailors. It would be a hard challenge to capture the powerful city guarded with a strong stone fortress, and only a matter of time until this would all lead to a very important battle in our Canadian history.

The Battle of the Plains of Abraham

As of the summer of June 1755, the British navy attacked and captured two French ships full of troops. The French demanded for the British to return their ships and troops, leaving the British refusing to return those army ships. By May 17 1756, the British had declared war against France. By then 50,000 new British troops were sent to North America in preparation for war against the French and capturing of the most powerful centres of power. The British by this point, were so determined of capturing Louisbourg and Québec; being the fact they were the most powerful cities and fortresses in this colony.  Although it was the clever strategy the British had came up with, they knew it wouldn’t be as easy as they thought. Gigantic strong walls that surrounded this powerful city guarded Québec. But if the British were able to capture and take over Québec, despite the fact of how challenging it would be. It could result into the British ruling over New France and being able to access all the networks of waterways; including the St. Lawrence River.

·      British, supported by Haudenosaunee  ·      French, supported by their First Nation allies·      First Nations, most supporting their allies·      Acadians, more likely to support their home country

As the Battle of the Plains of Abraham had come to an end, it had resulted in a total loss of 1300 soldiers. Within a day of battle, both generals Wolfe and Montcalm had died from bad wounds. Also the end result of the battle left the British with a victorious win against the French. Britain had done so by pulling out a surprising sneak of silence during the night, as they approached the top of the high cliff. In the end, the French retreated as they were found outnumbered by many British soldiers. Which had lead to the British winning up against the French.  Québec was not only just captured, but suffered great ruins in the city. As the cold winter had shortly approached and arrived, soldiers and settlers were scrambling to find food and supplies to survive. It had lead up to more soldiers dying from disease than the actual battle. Once all the ice from the river had melted away, the first ship to reach Québec was the British. Now back in Montréal it was a whole different story, they tried to hold on for another year after another small attack. By the spring of 1760, a number of 18,000 British troops closed in on Montreal. Though the French army reacted and fought once again against the British. Causing the French to win up against the British, and demanding for them to return back to Québec city.

Although Britain had won and also hoped to capture Québec city, it was not quite over just yet. After a small failure attack on the French remaining in Montréal, the British were demanded to return back to Québec city. Meanwhile the British were becoming stronger and more advanced as an army, which really alarmed and worried the French. Following the attack, the governor Vaudreuil was found lost and clueless on what he was to do next. As Vaudreuil worried, he thought of asking the currently dying Montcalm, on what he was to do now. Although the fact that Montcalm was dying, he almost instantly replied to Vaudreuil’s question, answering him with three suggestions: ·      Immediately re-attack the enemy·      Bring the troops upstream towards the Jacques-Cartier River·      Capitulate on behalf of the entire colony Vaudreuil’s fellow officers assembled together in the council of war, persuading Vaudreuil that the second option would be best. So Vaudreuil regrouped all the troops and were set to meet around 6:00 pm. Further on, Chevalier de Lévis (French commander of forces) had heard of this news and joined the group out near the river. Despite the fact of how much Lévis regretted the decision of coming out to the Jacques-Cartier River, he had joined anyway. But he feared if they left, the British would already be on their way to finally capture Québec.              Concluding, the ending results led to AsVaudreuil surrendering New France over to the British. The decision was finalized when 13 out of 14 council members (of the council of war) had voted in favor of surrendering the Québec city and New France. But also the fact of how Vaudreuil himself knew they could not win against the British, not when the British outnumbered the French and had a more advanced army. He surrendered New France on September 8, 1760, meaning the war was finally over and the French rule in North America had ended.

As the British had taken over and now ruling New France, they noticed how badly the city of Québec looked. Québec and other parts of New France struggled through some horrible destruction that was caused from the war, as well as struggling through the ruins of the place. Not only had all the bombarding completely destroyed the cities, but also almost a third of houses were completely burnt and destroyed. The town was in so much ruins, it was nearly impossible to walk the streets. Many public building need major repairs, along with those wrecked and burnt homes. It was until later on James Murray; an army officer, had ordered his troops to clear the streets as well as for them to repair about 500 homes and damaged buildings.  Not only the shape and looks of the colony was a major worry here, but also the worries for the future of this colony. Although the signing of the treaty of Paris in 1763 ending the war officially, it worried the First Nations peoples. They feared of the new land-hungry invaders entering their territories. With all the change to come, most people living in Canada concerned of how their future would play out.  Throughout the very different groups, everyone had a different perspective of things or how everything would affect their future. The First Nations were to make peace and some alliances with the British, although they didn’t treat them the way the French did.  Acadians were allowed to return to their original home; Nova Scotia. But they worried for their culture, religion and language, since there would be many English-speaking settlers living there.  Canadiens realized how different things would be now, with the British ruling and all. Despite their worries of their language and religion, the worried as if they would be assimilated by the British. Forced to forget their culture, religion and language, or maybe forced to leave. Fearing of being assimilated, and possibly being expelled the way the Acadians were earlier, these thoughts filling the minds of the Canadiens. The main question that seemed to be filling those curious minds, was if the Canadiens were to stay, would they be able to keep their language and religious rights under the British?

- Believed he was safe inside the fortress with the strong stone walls surrounding it- French were able to fire down below at their enemy- Help and supplies were on their way from Montréal - Distance of how far away the French help were, was unknown

Commander of Forces:Marquis de Montcalm (1712 - 1759)

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