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      [97] Pioneers of France in the New World, 253.


      [6] Major Peter Schuyler's Journal of his Expedition to Canada, in N. Y. Col. Docs., III. 800. "Les ennemis enfoncrent notre embuscade." Belmont.[591] Account of the Guns, Mortars, Shot, Shell, etc., found in the Town of Louisbourg upon its Surrender this day, signed Jeffrey Amherst, 27 July, 1758.


      And counts the numbers of their slainV1 speech he gave them a bullock for a feast, which they roasted and ate, pretending that they were eating the Governor of Canada! Some provisions arriving, orders were given to embark on the next day; but the officers murmured their dissent. The weather was persistently bad, their vessels would not hold half the party, and the bateaux, made only for river navigation, would infallibly founder on the treacherous and stormy lake. "All the field-officers," says John Shirley, "think it too rash an attempt; and I have heard so much of it that I think it my duty to let my father know what I hear." Another council was called; and the General, reluctantly convinced of the danger, put the question whether to go or not. The situation admitted but one reply. The council was of opinion that for the present the enterprise was impracticable; that Oswego should be strengthened, more vessels built, and preparation made to renew the attempt as soon as spring opened. [326] All thoughts of active operations were now suspended, and during what was left of the season the troops exchanged the musket for the spade, saw, and axe. At the end of October, leaving seven hundred men at Oswego, Shirley returned to Albany, and narrowly escaped drowning on the way, while passing a rapid in a whale-boat, to try the fitness of that species of craft for river navigation. [327]

      [Pg 3]The war which in the British colonies was called Queen Anne's War, and in England the War of the Spanish Succession, was the second of a series of four conflicts which ended in giving to Great Britain a maritime and colonial preponderance over France and Spain. So far as concerns the colonies and the sea, these several wars may be regarded as a single protracted one, broken by intervals of truce. The three earlier of them, it is true, were European contests, begun and waged on European disputes. Their American part was incidental and apparently subordinate, yet it involved questions of prime importance in the history of the world.

      [77] Vaudreuil et Beauharnois au Ministre, 17 Novembre, 1704.Toward five o'clock two English columns joined in a most determined assault on the extreme 109


      [210] Minutes of Council, 18 May, 1736. Governor Armstrong to the Secretary of State, 22 November, 1736.

      "I guess that's common enough," he said with a laugh.Versailles gave no sign of waning glories. On three evenings of the week, it was the pleasure of the king that the whole court should assemble in the vast suite of apartments now known as the Halls of Abundance, of Venus, of Diana, of Mars, 185 of Mercury, and of Apollo. The magnificence of their decorations, pictures of the great Italian masters, sculptures, frescoes, mosaics, tapestries, vases and statues of silver and gold; the vista of light and splendor that opened through the wide portals; the courtly throngs, feasting, dancing, gaming, promenading, conversing, formed a scene which no palace of Europe could rival or approach. Here were all the great historic names of France, princes, warriors, statesmen, and all that was highest in rank and place; the flower, in short, of that brilliant society, so dazzling, captivating, and illusory. In former years, the king was usually present, affable and gracious, mingling with his courtiers and sharing their amusements; but he had grown graver of late, and was more often in his cabinet, laboring with his ministers on the task of administration, which his extravagance and ambition made every day more burdensome. [1]

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      Vaudreuil, the governor-general, was at Montreal, and Montcalm sent a courier to inform him of his arrival. He soon went thither in person, and the two men met for the first time. The new general was not welcome to Vaudreuil, who had hoped to command the troops himself, and had represented to the Court that it was needless and inexpedient to send out a general officer from France. [366] The Court had not accepted his views; [367] and hence it was with more curiosity than satisfaction that he greeted the colleague who had been assigned him. He saw before him a man of small stature, with a lively countenance, a keen eye, and, in moments of animation, rapid, vehement utterance, and nervous gesticulation. Montcalm, we may suppose, regarded the Governor with no less attention. Pierre Fran?ois Rigaud, Marquis de Vaudreuil, who had governed Canada early in the century; and he himself had been governor of Louisiana. He had not the force of character which his position demanded, lacked decision in times of crisis; and though tenacious of authority, was more jealous in asserting than self-reliant in exercising it. One of his traits was a sensitive egotism, which 367The financial condition of France was desperate. Her people were crushed with taxation; her debt grew apace; and her yearly expenditure was nearly double her revenue. Choiseul felt the need of immediate peace; and George III. and Bute were 403

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      [25] The Governor and Council to the Agents of Massachusetts, in Andros Tracts, III. 53.

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      The intervention of the king wrought a change. The annual shipments of emigrants made by him were, in the most favorable view, of a very mixed character, and the portion which Mother Mary calls canaille was but too conspicuous. Along with them came a regiment of soldiers fresh from the license of camps and the excitements of Turkish wars, accustomed to obey their officers and to obey nothing else, and more ready to wear the scapulary of the Virgin in campaigns against the Mohawks than to square their lives by the rules of Christian ethics. Our good king, writes Sister Morin, of Montreal, has sent troops to defend us from the Iroquois, and the soldiers and officers have ruined the Lords vineyard, and planted wickedness and sin and crime in our soil of Canada. * Few, indeed, among the officers followed the example of one of their number, Paul Dupuy, who, in his settlement of Isle aux Oies, below Quebec, lived, it is said, like a saint, and on Sundays and fte days exhorted his servants and habitans with such unction that their eyes filled with tears. ** Nor, let us hope, were there many imitators of Major La Fredire, who, with a company of the regiment, was sent to garrison Montreal, where he ruled with absolute sway over settlers and soldiers alike. His countenance naturally repulsive was made more so by the loss of an eye; yet he was irrepressible in gallantry, and women and girls fled in terror from the military Polyphemus. The men, too, feared and hated him, not without reason. One morning a settler named Demers was hoeing his field, when484


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