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Word Count: 678
The French and Indian War a colonial extension of the Seven Years War that ravaged Europe from 1756 to 1763 was the bloodiest American war in the 18th century It took more lives than the American Revolution involved people on three continents including the Caribbean The war was the product of an imperial struggle a clash between the French and English over colonial territory and wealth Within these global forces the war can also be seen as a product of the localized rivalry between British and French colonists Tensions between the British and French in America had been rising for some time as each side wanted to increase its land holdings What is now considered the French and Indian War though at the time the war was undeclared began in November 1753 when the young Virginian major George Washington and a number of men headed out into the Ohio region with the mission to deliver a message to a French captain demanding that French troops withdraw from the territory The demand was rejected In 1754 Washington received authorization to build a fort near the present site of Pittsburgh He was unsuccessful because of the strong French presence in the area In May Washingtons troops clashed with local French forces a skirmish that ultimately resulted in Washington having to surrender the meager fort he had managed to build just one month later The incident set off a string of small battles In 1755 The British sent General Edward Braddock to oversee the British Colonial forces but on his way to oust the French from Fort Duquesne he was surprised by the French and badly routed losing his life in the process After a year and a half of undeclared war the French and the English formally declared war in May 1756 For the first three years of the war the outnumbered French dominated the battlefield soundly defeating the English in battles at
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