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Causes of the French and Indian War


This page describes the causes of the French and Indian War.


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French and Indian War

French and Indian War Interactive
Ohio River and Ohio River Valley


Fort Necessity
Fort Duquesne
Fort Niagara
Fort Beausejour
Fort Frontenac
Lake George
Thousand Islands
Quebec (Plains of Abraham)

Important People

George Washington
William Pitt
Jeffrey Amherst
French and Indian War Activities

Battle of the Plains of Abraham

Battle of the Plains of Abraham – Public Domain

Although struggles for supremacy had been going on for many decades between France and England in the New World, hostilities intensified in the early 1750’s as both English and French settlers had attempted to colonize land in the Ohio River Valley, near present day Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The English settlers, who had moved northwest from Virginia, and French settlers, who had moved east from the Great Lakes, or south from Canada, each thought they owned the rights to the land.

In 1754, English forces under George Washington had begun their march to Fort Duquesne for the purposes of ousting the French from the region by force. On the way, they encountered a French scouting party near present-day Uniontown, Pennsylvania. Washington’s men massacred the party in what came to be known as The Battle of Jumonville Glen. Washington soon took camp at Great Meadows, a large natural clearing, and ordered the construction of Fort Necessity in anticipation of a French response. The French did respond, as 600 soldiers forced Washington to surrender the fort. The French and Indian War had begun.