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French and Indian War

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The French and Indian War My name is Henry Carter, a British Commander sent to America to defend the colonies from the French. It started in 1754 when both England and France claimed the Ohio River Valley. There had been many battles fought between the French and English settlers. Most of the battles were won by the French because they were more experienced at fighting in the wilderness. In 1755, I was assigned to General Edward Braddock’s group. His group included 1,750 British regulars and 450 colonial militia. General Braddock believed in the English strategies of fighting a battle by positioning themselves in an open area. We were taught and trained these strategies by Braddock even though we had heard and seen that the French were willing to fight in the more barbaric ways of the Indians. They would hide and make surprise attacks on our units. In July of 1755, General Braddock decided we were going to attack Fort Duquesne located in western Pennsylvania. It was one of many French forts in the Ohio valley. We knew Captain Beaujeau was the commander at the fort. We also knew that their army numbered less than 1,000 men including Indians fighting with them. We were hoping to draw them out into the open and fight them on our terms. We woke up on July 9th, 1755 to a hot and muggy morning. I got dressed and ate breakfast before giving oats to my horse Doug. Doug was a fearless white stallion whom I had ridden into many battles with. We packed up our gear and headed through the wilderness toward Fort Duquesne. We travelled in a row side by side as we made our way closer. The guy next to me was a young man by the name of George Washington. I learned that he was 23 years old loved this new land. Something about his character and confidence told me that he would be a great man someday. We were approximately 10 miles away from Fort Duquesne, confident that we would win this battle. Some soldiers carried flags, while others played music as we marched. That was when the French made a surprise attack on us. I saw out of the corner of my eye a French soldier who had jumped from the brush and came running at George and me. He fired a shot at George ripping through his coat but missing him. I drew my pistol, which I had already loaded, and fired at the French soldier killing him. I quickly spun around just in time to see an Indian throw a tomahawk and kill one of our soldiers. I pulled my sword and ran it through his chest. I heard a bullet whiz by my head causing me to duck and lose my balance, falling off my horse. I crawled to some brush and reloaded my pistol. The sounds of gunfire rang out from all around me as both sides were furiously fighting one another. I looked over just in time to see General Braddock’s horse get shot out from under him. An Indian was running up to Braddock with a club ready to hit him. I fired my pistol once again killing the Indian before he could reach General Braddock. Braddock jumped up onto another horse drawing his sword as he rode away from me. I grabbed a rifle from a dead soldier and jumped back on Doug following Braddock. By the time I caught up to him, he had already had his horse shot from under him again, but somehow the General was still alive. I fired my rifle killing a French soldier who was taking aim at Braddock and then jumped off my horse and killing another French soldier with my bayonette. I then ducked behind a tree to reload my weapons when I heard George yelling my name. He told me that we needed to go. George was riding Doug and had me get on behind him as he led a retreat to safety. When we got to safety, we all began talking and learned the extent of our losses. Most of the British regulars had been wiped out. General Braddock had 4 horses shot out from under him before he was killed. It was then that we realized that more of our bullets had hit trees than the French or Indians. George told me that he had 2 horses shot out from under him and his coat had 4 bullet holes in it, but he was not wounded. Looking back, our red uniforms made us easy to spot in the forest. The loss at Fort Duquesne was hard to accept, but we learned a lot over the next few years. We began to win more and more battles. A man by the name of William Pitt became the leader of the English government. He was determined to win the war. He gave us more troops, younger and better commanders, and more guns and ammunition. By the summer of 1759, I had been assigned to serve under the command of General James Wolfe. In September of that year, we were given orders to attack Quebec. Quebec was located on a high cliff along the St. Lawrence River and was under the command of General Louis Montcalm. We knew we could not attack it directly without finding a way around to fight them on our terms. General Wolfe gave me and two others the task of finding a way for our army to reach the top of the cliffs. He said we would need to fight them on the Plains of Abraham in order to defeat General Montcalm and the French army. He said it was important to win this battle because it could lead to the total defeat of the French in America. On September 11th, 1759, our army had already surrounded Quebec as I left at sunset to search for a way past the cliffs. We searched all night trying to be as quiet as possible in order to not be found. In the early morning of September 12th, we finally found a path that we could use to climb to the top. We made our way back to camp and informed General Wolfe that we had found a way. He decided that the next night the entire army would climb to the top and position ourselves outside the city. As dawn broke the next day, the French realized that we were waiting for them on the Plains of Abraham. General Wolfe had commanded us not to fire until they were within range. General Montcalm led the French army directly at us. The French were too eager to fire and tried shooting when they were too far away. Because we had waited, our shots were more accurate, killing more of them. I was able to fire, reload and fire again before we were commanded to charge at them. I drew my sword and had Doug race at the incoming line of French soldiers. I stabbed one soldier before I felt a sharp burning sting in my left shoulder, throwing me from my horse. I had been shot! Another French soldier ran toward me but I was able to shoot him with my pistol. I looked over and saw General Wolfe had been killed, but I was determined not to lose this battle. I knew I had to forget about the pain in my shoulder and get up and continue to fight. I was able to reload my pistol just in time to shoot another French soldier before I came face to face with General Montcalm himself! We both drew our swords. He swung at me like a mad man, but I was able to deflect his swing with my sword. I kicked him in the chest, knocking him to the ground. He tried to get back up and swing at me again, but this time my sword caught his wrist, cutting his hand clean off. With his other hand, he tried reaching for his pistol, but I quickly swung my sword at his neck taking his head! I fell to my knees exhausted. After only 15 minutes of fighting, the French were retreating in a very disorganized manner. 5 days later, the French finally surrendered the city of Quebec to us.
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