Army and empire: British soldiers on the American frontier, by Michael N. McConnell

By Michael N. McConnell

The tip of the Seven Years’ struggle discovered Britain’s expert military in the USA dealing with new and unexpected tasks. as well as occupying the lately conquered French settlements in Canada, redcoats have been ordered into the trans-Appalachian west, into the little-known and masses disputed territories that lay among British, French, and Spanish the United States. There the warriors chanced on themselves serving as occupiers, police, and diplomats in an unlimited territory marked by way of severe climatic variation—a global decidedly assorted from Britain or the settled American colonies. Going past the battle event, military and Empire examines the lives and stories of British infantrymen within the complicated, evolving cultural frontiers of the West in British the USA. From the 1st visual appeal of the redcoats within the West until eventually the outbreak of the yankee Revolution, Michael N. McConnell explores all facets of peacetime provider, together with the warriors’ nutrition and health and wellbeing, psychological wellbeing and fitness, social lifestyles, transportation, garments, and the outfitted environments during which they lived and labored. McConnell seems to be on the military at the frontier for what it was once: a set of small groups of fellows, girls, and kids confronted with the demanding situations of surviving at the a long way western fringe of empire. (20060119)

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Driven by an urgent need to impose order on an ill-defined and volatile region, Amherst, for example, quickly decided to blanket the Great Lakes basin with garrisons. Later, the declining number of forts and soldiers on the frontier after 1765 reflected a growing awareness, both at army headquarters in America and at Whitehall, of the army’s very real limitations in the face of vast distances, numerous Indian and colonial peoples, and shrinking resources. In both cases the shifting configuration of the armed frontier depended largely upon imperial policies that were often developed contingently in response to relations with native peoples.

The ships could carry tons of bulk cargo. The schooner Huron, built at Navy Island in 1761, was rated at eighty tons; it could carry more supplies to the western forts than dozens of bateaux and, with a crew of sixteen, was more efficient to operate than the smaller craft. The ships were just as vulnerable to bad weather, decay, and accidents, however. Despite the efforts of shipwrights, the vessels were often out of repair and needed constant—and costly— attention. The army’s estimates for the department in 1766 included Ł4,815 18s.

59 Over fifteen years, then, the occupation of the West was never entirely settled but was continually evolving and being reconfigured in response to the challenges of war and peace. Never planned with the same method that defined the armed borders of European states, the army’s stations nevertheless reflected a logic born of peculiarly American conditions: the natural routes into the West and the army’s roles as imperial defenders and border police. 0pt P ——— Short Page PgEnds: T [27], (27) 28 british occupation of the west to territories occupied by France and Spain.

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