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Imperial War and Crisis - British Empire

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During the latter part of the 17th century and early 18th century the British Empire was fighting on several fronts between the French and the Spanish. Not only were these wars important to England to control the colonies of North America, but they also affected the indigenous people of North America and the colonist themselves (Taylor, 421). It was important for the indigenous people to maintain relations with the French to offset the expansionism and imperialism of the English. The colonists were also affected to the expansion of British rule in the colonies through more strict and dictating management.

For the British, success was important in the war against France. Not only was defeating the French in Europe important it was also crucial in the colonies to defeat them. By defeating the French it opened up the doors to take over territory in North America known as New France, which in turn made it easier to conquer the indigenous people who sided with the French in this territory for protection and trade (Taylor, 421).

The British soon began to invest more men and money into the colonies creating a more proactive policy for colonists. Through trade law enforcement and military strength the British Empire tightened the noose around the colonies (Taylor, 421). Not only was the West Indies a target of the Empire but St. Augustine, Florida and Cartagena also. These conflicts proved to be unsuccessful for the British returning home in defeat (Taylor, 422).

In the early years of the 18th century a British politician by the name of Sir Robert Walpole decided it was in the greatest interest of Britain to have peace among its enemies rather than a costly and uncertain war against France (Taylor, 422). This was welcomed among the citizens and Parliament for a few years; however the concern of the growing power and wealth of France became abundantly clear for the British Empire (Taylor, 422). France's West Indies plantations were more profitable than England's; this became more of a concern for England (Taylor, 422). England out of concern was not willing to start a war with the French, so they began to attack France's ally Spain by seizing Spanish shipping, ports, and islands around the Caribbean (Taylor, 422) this would help strengthen the English dominance in the West Indies (Taylor, 422).

France in fear of retaliation from the British after their losses came to support Spain during this time of conflict thus leading to the War of Austrian Succession in 1744 (Taylor, 423). This left the colonies to fight for themselves in North America with little aid of a few warships supplied by England (Taylor, 423). In 1744 after hearing of the new war among France and Britain, the Louisbourg commander attacked the fishing region of Nova Scotia, which was predominately French and had been obtained by the British after the Treaty of Utrecht in 1713 (Taylor, 423). William Shirley, the ambitious governor of Massachusetts, rallied forces of four thousand men and a British naval squadron taking back this territory from France (Taylor, 423).

Taylor soon discusses the balance of power among the French and their allies the indigenous people known as the Iroquois. How they relied on the rival competition and conflict among the French and English. They placed themselves strategically between the two warring factions and played both sides to their advantage (Taylor, 424). The French were a much more civilized ally to the Iroquois than the British and their colonists (Taylor, 426). However the English colonists had a stronger hold on the indigenous through trade of metals, guns, and alcohol the indigenous people embraced the better deals according to Taylor.

Taylor then goes into

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