Haughty Conquerors: Amherst and the Great Indian Uprising of 1763

By William R. Nester | Go to book overview

Introduction

Do not be angry father, you are going to the other side of the great lake. We shall get rid of the English.

-- Indian reply to Captain Pierre Pouchot when he criticized them for abandoning the French, 17601

Although that anonymous Indian's role in the uprising from 1763 to 1764 known as Pontiac's War can never be known, his words were prescient. During that time a loose coalition of tribes from the Appalachian Mountains to the Mississippi River and from the Ohio valley to the Great Lakes did briefly manage to "rid" themselves of nearly all the British in their midst. Indeed, that effort ranks with the 1680 Pueblo revolt as the most successful Indian war in Native American history. Not only did they assault and capture nine frontier forts, kill as many as 2,500 whites, and besiege Forts Detroit and Pitt for months, but, most importantly, they negotiated a peace with the British that realized most of their demands. Nonetheless, those Indians would only briefly savor their victory.

What sparked that uprising against British rule imposed only three years earlier? Britain's conquest of New France in 1760, codified by the 1763 Treaty of Paris, terrified virtually all Indians east of the Mssissippi River. In the previous century and a half of expanding French and British settlement in North America, most of the tribes that had survived the epidemics and wars brought by the Europeans had actually prospered. By playing off those imperial powers against each other, they extracted the best trade and alliance terms from both. Indian living standards had risen with the meshing of

-vii-

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Haughty Conquerors: Amherst and the Great Indian Uprising of 1763
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Introduction vii
  • Notes xiii
  • 1 - Conquest "Where Are We Now? The French Are All Subdued" 1
  • Notes 31
  • 2 - Conspiracies "Destroy Their Forts and Make Them Rue the Day" 35
  • Notes 66
  • 3 - Attacks "And Drive These Britons Hence Like Frightened Deer" 73
  • Notes 103
  • 4 - Counterattacks "Big with Their Victories" 107
  • Notes 145
  • 5 - Stalemate "Leave These Distant Lakes and Streams to Us" 149
  • Notes 179
  • 6 - Subjection "To Be a Vassal to His Low Commanders" 185
  • Notes 223
  • 7 - Settlements "Nay Think Us Conquered, and Our Country Theirs" 231
  • Notes 269
  • 8 - Consequencesl "Whom See We Now, Their Haughty Conquerors" 279
  • Notes 283
  • Index 285
  • About the Author *
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