Siege of Louisbourg (1758)

Siege Of Louisbourg (1758)

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Siege of Louisbourg (1758)

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The Siege of Louisbourg was a pivotal battle of the Seven Years' War (known in the United States as the French and Indian War) in 1758 which ended the French colonial era in Atlantic Canada and led directly to the loss of Quebec in 1759 and the remainder of French North America the following year.


The British government realized that with the Fortress of Louisbourg under French control, there was no way that the Royal Navy could sail down the St. Lawrence River for an attack on Quebec unmolested. After an expedition against Louisbourg in 1757 led by Lord Loudon was turned back due to a strong French naval deployment, the British under the leadership of William Pitt resolved to try again with new commanders.

Pitt assigned the duty of capturing the fortress to Major General Jeffrey Amherst. Amherst's brigadiers were Charles Lawrence, James Wolfe and Edward Whitmore, and command of naval operations was assigned to Admiral Edward Boscawen. The chief engineer was John Henry Bastide who had been present at the first siege of Louisbourg in 1745 and was chief engineer at Fort St Philip, Minorca, in 1756 when the British had surrendered the fort and the island to the French after a long siege.

As they had in 1757, the French planned to defend Louisbourg by a large naval build-up. However, the French fleet sailing from Toulon was blockaded in Cartagena by a British force, and a relief force defeated at the Battle of Cartagena. After this the French abandoned their attempt...
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