A History of Canada - Vol. 2

By Gustave Lanctot; Margaret M. Cameron | Go to book overview

CHAPTER FIFTEEN
THE WAR OF THE SPANISH SUCCESSION
1703-1713

Situation under Vaudreuil. Capture of the Seine and Mgr. de Saint-Vallier. Beauharnois. Riots. Franco-Abenaki expeditions. Negotiations for neutrality between Boston and Quebec. Intrigues. Hostilities in the West. Haverhill. An English invasion plan. Defeat of Manthet on Hudson Bay. Walker's expedition against Quebec. Shipwreck. Defeat of the Fox conspiracy. Peace of Utrecht.

To succeed Callières Louis XIV appointed Vaudreuil as Governor- General of New France. He made the appointment with some reluctance, since Madame de Vaudreuil, a Canadian, was a member of a large family which might prove a temptation to nepotism and favouritism. 1 In the colony, the appointment was greeted with almost universal satisfaction. Vaudreuil was a brave and skilful officer, a man of sound judgment and sympathetic understanding. Moreover, he had already spent sixteen years in the country and he had married a Canadian, Louise Elisabeth de Joybert.

The new Governor, who was commissioned on August 1, 1703, took office in very difficult circumstances. In the course of his first year a smallpox epidemic caused hundreds of deaths; the situation of the fur trade was more critical than ever; still more serious, the War of the Spanish Succession held over Acadia and Canada the threat of invasion from both Boston and New York. Each of these colonies had its own reasons for hostility towards New France. Boston was angry at being excluded from fishing in Acadian waters, and New York at being cut of from the western fur trade. Boston tried to win over the Abenakis, New York sought to stir up the Iroquois, and both cherished just resentment for the cruel FrancoIndian raids. 2

The first hostile action which directly affected Canada was the

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