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Constructing forts in the midst of the Indian districts, taking possession of Louisiana in the name of King Louis XIV...
— Chapter LIII (53): Louis XV, France in the Colonies, 1745-1763 A Popular History of France From The Earliest Times, Volume VI c.1830 by Francois Pierre Guillaume Guizot Project Gutenburg The French went to Louisbourg in 1713 after ceding Acadia and Newfoundland to the British through the Treaty of Utrecht, which ended the War of the Spanish Succession.
The history of the French colonists in Canada showed traits and presented characteristics rare in French annals; the ardor of the French nature and the suavity of French manners seemed to be combined with the stronger virtues of the people of the north; everywhere, amongst the bold pioneers of civilization in the new world, the French marched in the first rank without ever permitting themselves to be surpassed by the intrepidity or perseverance of the Anglo-Saxons, down to the day when, cooped up within the first confines of their conquests, fighting for life and liberty, the Canadians defended foot to foot the honor of their mother country, which had for a long while neglected them, and at last abandoned them, under the pressure of a disastrous war conducted by a government as incapable as it was corrupt... Lawrence was drawn by John-Denis, who came from Honfleur in Normandy.
Before long the fishers began to approach the coasts, attracted by the fur-trade; they entered into relations with the native tribes, buying, very often for a mere song, the produce of their hunting, and, introducing to them, together with the first fruits of civilization, its corruptions and its dangers.
In return, the company was to distribute the property among 100 families and build a fort to protect them and the British claim to the area.
The activities of British explorers, trappers and traders in these western lands quickly became known to the French, who had been active in this area for more than a hundred years and had no interest in sharing the region with anyone, and not Englishmen (a term that then included people who lived in the thirteen British colonies along the Atlantic coast from Massachusetts to North Carolina, including Virginia).
In 1748 the English government granted to the Ohio Company 200,000 acres of land near the headwaters of the Ohio River [generally in the vicinity of what is now Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania].
They responded by constructing a string of forts in the contested area [now western Pennsylvania and Ohio] to assert sovreignty and to exclude Englishmen.
The Ohio Country (sometimes called the Ohio Territory) was the name used in the 1700s for the regions of North America west of the Appalachian Mountains and in the region of the upper Ohio River south of Lake Erie – roughly corresponding to the present-day states of Ohio, eastern Indiana, western Pennsylvania, and northwestern West Virginia.
In 1753, 1,500 French soldiers entered the disputed area and began work to build and improve several forts, including Fort Le Boeuf (1753), Fort de Chartres (1754) and Fort Machault (1756) – these three forts all were located on and protected the vital main transportation and communications corridor for France, between Canada (Quebec) and Louisiana.
Robert Dinwiddie, Virginia's lieutenant governor, upon hearing of France's actions, immediately sent George Washington and Christopher Gist to Fort Le Boeuf to persuade the French to leave.
The shareholders were mostly residents of the colony of Virginia [now the states of Virginia and West Virginia].