The 3 Main Causes Of The French And Indian War

Event Date1754-1763
Two SidesBritish Empire and the Kingdom of France
LocationNorth East North America
Further ReadingThe 6 Nations of The Iroquois Confederacy and The 4 Most Important Documents In The History Of The U.S

From 1754 to 1763 the British Colonies engaged in an ongoing series of battles called the French and Indian War. There were 3 main causes of the French and Indian War that few people realize today. This conflict is important because it set the tone for the American Revolution.

There are 3 main causes of the French and Indian War. First, the dispute of who owned the Ohio river valley escalated tensions. Second, colonists from both France and England were running out of room to expand. Third, both France and the British Empire wanted to seize valuable resources for economic gain.

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Without further ado, here are the 3 main causes of the French and Indian War.

One Of The Main Causes Was Over Who Owned The Ohio River Valley

One of the main causes of the French and Indian War was ownership over the Ohio River Valley.

During the 18th century the Ohio River Valley would become legendary as a fertile ground on the other side of the mountains. Both the French and British colonists wanted to claim this land for cultivation.

Around 1740 both the Ohio Company was created to explore this new land and trade with the local native Americans. However, the Ohio Company began to notice that French traders were already engaging in trade.

This conflict over trade would continue for around 13 years before starting to reach a breaking point. In 1754 a 22 year old George Washington ambushed a French patrol. This event kickstarted the French and Indian War.

As such one of the main causes of the French and Indian War was the dispute over who had owned the Ohio River Valley.

Colonists From Both New France and New England Were Running Out Of Room To Expand

One of the main causes of the French and Indian War was the fact that colonists in both New England and New France were running out of room to expand.

By this point there was not much room for colonists to begin to establish a foothold in North Eastern North America. The British Colonists were having to either go clear land in the forests or live in overcrowding cities.

In New France most of the French citizens were having to live in Quebec as the land surrounding them was either too densely wooded or swampy.

Both groups of people wanted to expand westward into the Ohio River valley. This was because they had heard reports of a fertile land with a large river that could be used to power machinery or transport goods.

As such in the middle of the 18th century colonists began to fight over land. Because of this a series of forts would be constructed along the Ohio River Valley for both the British and French. This only increased the tension between the two groups of people.

However, as we can see one of the causes of the French and Indian War was colonists starting to run out of land. Because of this both the colonists of new France and New England would start to push back against each other.

Both France And England Wanted To Seize Valuable Economic Resources In The Ohio River Valley

Another one of the main causes of the French and Indian war was that both the French and the English wanted to dominate the fur trade within the Ohio region.

For nearly 100 years the North American Beaver had been hunted for its fur which was shipped back to England. The Ohio River Valley presented a very wealthy opportunity for both the British and the English who wanted to trade goods with the locals.

From 1720 up until 1750 both Empires would engage in an arms race for who could establish the best contacts with the native tribes of the Ohio River Valley. The French were often more culturally sensitive and brought significantly better gifts than the British.

Because of this by the time the British attempted to befriend the locals most were already working with the colony of New France. As a result New England felt it was necessary to begin to prepare for a direct conflict.

As such it was a desire to extract the natural resources of the Ohio River Valley which was one of the main causes of the French and Indian War.

Conclusion

There you have it; an entire article dedicated to the 3 main causes of the French and Indian War.

American History remains a fascinating subject of research. Across North America from 1600-1776 there were massive amounts of varying cultures, nations, and people all with their own history. Potential graduate students will find substantial amounts of possible research opportunities here.

Here at The History Ace I strive to publish the best history articles on the internet. If you enjoyed this article then consider subscribing to the free newsletter and sharing around the internet.

Further, you can check out some of the other articles below.

Sincerely,

Nick