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|French and Indian War, 1754-1763
the last and most important conflict over French and British possessions in North America
Unlike the three previous wars (King William's War, Queen Anne's War, King George's War), which began in Europe and then spread to America, this struggle broke out first in America. Its European counterpart, the Seven Years' War, began two years later, in 1756.
Territorial rivalries had become more intense as British and French settlements expanded over the years. Disputes over control of Acadia, the Great Lakes region, the land around lakes George and Champlain, and, most important, the vast area between the Allegheny Mountains and the Mississippi River provided the fuel for the war. By the time it was over France's vast colonial empire in North America had been dramatically reduced, while Britain gained control over most French possessions east of the Mississippi River, as well as Spanish Florida. The French and Indian War also brought George Washington to the attention of his countrymen, thereby setting the stage for his subsequent command of the Continental Army during the Revolutionary War.
Important Dates and Events