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King William’s War

There were a number of conflicts between the France and England, which lasted through many decades. One of the first of those conflicts received the moniker ‘King William’s War’. William III was a relatively new English monarch who was from the Netherlands. He aligned with a group of nations that joined forces; they include Sweden, Spain and Germany. This group, the League of Augsburg, did not support the French’s expansion attempts in the America’s. Later, the Dutch and Austrians joined the group’s efforts as well, in opposition to King Louis XIV.

Causes of the King William’s War

The war of the grand alliance was essentially about having dominance over America. In addition, the fur trade was also in contention. There were disturbances in New England when the conflicts started in 1689. The English had provoked the French when they raided St. Castine’s Trading House and in retaliation Pemaquid, an outpost of the English, was ruined by the Abernaki Indians, who sided with France. They further harassed those people living in frontier settlements.

There were also Iroquois Indian raids on the colony, which provoked Louis de Buade to disseminate war troupes. The lands in America were enormous and isolated places. Neighbors often lived many miles apart with no hope of rescue or added security. As such they were scared, so Buade’s actions directly gave the people some peace of mind and increased morale. In doing this he too got back support from their Indian supporters. The troupes were successful in their endeavors and soon launched attacks on Fort Loyal, Salmon Falls and Schenectady.

The English were enraged and attempted to seek revenge, by attacking Montreal. During the war of the league of Augsburg, they managed to send seven ships and reinforcements by land. This was a collaborative effort by those of the British in several states including New York, Connecticut, Plymouth and Massachusetts. Their efforts of retaliation were not successful and only caused further provocation against English settlements such as Haverhill, Durham and Falmouth; however, the Boston settlement was not overcome.

Read Also: French and Indian War

War Period

While the English monarchy under King William III joined the war of the league of Augsburg during 1688, Louis de Buade’s retaliation occurred 1689. The attacks on Montreal, from the French occurred in 1690. The French again retaliated in 1690, in 1694 and 1697. Later the various parties eventually negotiated a Treaty of Ryswick. This was signed and implemented in 1697 and peace reigned until 1702, with the Queen Anne’s battles. King Williams’s fighting, which was a 9 years’ war was the beginning of 6 different battles throughout those years.

Consequences and significance of the King William’s War 

The hostilities had many Indian tribes fighting alongside their English or French counterparts. They stayed out of the conflict of Queen Anne’s War, but later the Wabanaki Confederacy, who was a Native American confederation joined with the French in many raids. Indians participated in the Deerfield massacre and other conflicts that killed and kidnapping hundreds of people. This instilled great fear of Native Indians. Later the Salem witch trials were said to be as a result of the fear of black magic, because it was aligned to enchantment and Indians. Many scholars posit that because countless refugees were displaced by the conflict and their experience with the Indians, tensions escalated in Salem around 1692.

Read Also: French Spanish, Polish And Prussian Influence In The American Revolution

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