God is a Frenchman

Discussion in 'Alternate History Discussion: Before 1900' started by Anaxagoras, Feb 13, 2006.

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  1. Anaxagoras Vox clamantis in deserto

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    1759:
    In September, an upper-level disturbance alters the position of the jet stream, resulting in colder and wetter weather than would otherwise have been the case. Outside Quebec, the British army under General James Wolfe is severely hampered by rain and cold, whereas the French garrison under the Marquis de Montcalm remains secure within the city. A reckless attempt to scale the cliffs and reach the Plains of Abraham results in a fiasco, with most of the British assault force being killed or captured. General Wolfe himself was mortally wounded, living only long enough to know that he had lost.

    Severe weather continues throughout the fall. In November, a Royal Navy fleet of 23 ships pursued a slightly smaller French force, which was trying to escape into Quiberon Bay. Foolishly attacking even though a storm was nearly upon him, British admiral Edward Hawke was unable to engage the French before the full force of the storm hit. While the French succeeded in reaching safe anchorages, most of the British ships floundered in the chaotic seas. The remainder were captured by the French soon after.

    Throughout France, the cathedrals were filled by celebrating worshippers, who claimed that God had sent weather to destroy the English.

    1760:
    Due to the disaster at Quiberon Bay, the Royal Navy lacks sufficient strength to fully blockade the French coast. Because of this, a French fleet is able to sail across the Atlantic with reinforcements for the beleaguered French forces in America. In the spring, the newly-arrived French army lays siege to Louisburg, which had been captured by the British in 1758. By the end of the year, it is once again in French hands, opening up a route for resupply and reinforcement.

    An advance by General Jeffrey Amherst towards Montreal is defeated by General Montcalm. The British suffer heavy casualties, particularly from raids against their supply lines by French-allied Indian warriors.

    A substantial portion of the British naval forces operating in the Indian Ocean are withdrawn to Europe, to make up for the losses of the previous year (the British greatly fear the possibility of a French invasion of England itself). As a result, the French are able to recoup some of their losses in India. French troops under the half-Irish General Thomas Arthur defeat the British at the Battle of Wandiwash, greatly strengthening the French position in India.

    In addition, the British reduce their financial subsidy to Prussia, which is already under heavy pressure from the French, Austrian and Prussian armies. The year sees significant defeats for Prussia, whose army is steadily dwindling away. Despite the tactical genius of Frederick the Great, it seems unlikely that Prussia can last long against such long odds.

    1761:
    The year begins with two diplomatic disasters for Britain. In February, Spain declares war on Great Britain. Only weeks later, Prussia signs a treaty of peace with her enemies, being forced to return Silesia to Austria. Frederick the Great bitterly denounced the British for failing to continue their financial subsidy of his war effort.

    Paradoxically, the entry of Spain into the war provides Britain with a series of morale-boosting victories. A Spanish attempt to capture Gibraltar ends in disaster in the summer, with most of the Spanish fleet being destroyed by the Royal Navy. During the fall, Havana is captured by the British.

    Things continue to go poorly in the struggle against the French, however. Freed from committing the bulk of their army against the Prussians and largely able to circumvent the Royal Navy blockade, a stream of French convoys carries regular troops to India and North America. British offensives in both theaters are repeatedly repulsed.

    1762:
    In January, a no confidence vote in the House of Commons removes William Pitt from office. New elections bring the Tory Party to power. Having lost their only major Continental ally, and seeing no prospect of achieving any significant gains in the colonial theater, the British decide to cut their losses and seek peace terms.

    On August 14, the Treaty of Paris is signed, restoring peace between Britain and France. Britain recognizes French claims in North America and returns the French colonies it had captured during the fighting (a few Caribbean islands and African trading posts). In India, the British are required to recognize certain French clients as rajas and refrain from political interference outside the areas they already control. Spain offers to recognize British control of Cuba in exchange for a return of Gibraltar, but Britain elects to return Cuba to Spain and keep Gibraltar.

    Reaction to the Treaty of Paris among the American colonists is almost universally negative. By recognizing French claims to the Trans-Appalachian West, the British government had effectively limited their territorial aspirations to the eastern coast of the Continent. Many prominent colonial leaders, having invested hugely in western colonization schemes, find themselves bankrupt and angry.

    1763:
    The French revel in their victory over the British. However, the government has become seriously alarmed at the vulnerability of New France, particularly on account of its small population (roughly fifty thousand) compared to the population of the British colonies (roughly a million). It is decided that urgent measures are needed to increase the population of New France.

    In addition, France takes advantage of its strengthened position in India. Many of its client kings, thankful for French assistance in holding back the British, allow the French to take over much of the administration infrastructure of their states. The French generally manage their responsibilities efficiently, while turning a handsome profit for themselves. The number of French military advisors to Indian rajas, already high, increases still further, as the Indians have begun to consider the French as being militarily superior to the British.

    From London, Benjamin Franklin writes a series of articles which are widely reprinted both in Britain and the British colonies. He restates his opinion that there must be a “union” of the colonies in order to properly defend against the French threat. These articles are much discussed and debated throughout the year.

    1764:
    France begins a program of sending convicts to work off their sentences as laborers in New France. Another program is launched for giving the Parisian poor grants of land and money if they emigrate to New France. Many of these new colonists are sent to St. Louis and New Orleans rather than Quebec and Montreal, as far-sighted French politicians are recognizing their future economic value. In addition, a new settlement is started on the Ohio River (on the site of OTL Cincinnati), designed to be a strategic outpost to control the territory. It is named Montcalm.

    The French also lift the ban against Protestants settling in New France, much to the irritation of the Church, which wishes to make New France a model Catholic society.

    Unable to invest their liquid capital in colonization schemes, the American colonists become increasing irritated that they are barred by the Navigation Acts from investing in ironworks and other newly-emerging industries.

    In India, the British attempt to develop their territory in Bengal, while the French continue to gain allies and expand their territory in southern India. The French city of Pondicherry is becoming the main trading port city on the southeastern coast of the Subcontinent, while the colony of Mahe serves a similar purpose on the southwester coast. In other areas, free from British interference, the French are building new fortresses and garrisoning them with regular French troops as well as Indian recruits.

    1765:
    With Prussia reduced in power and influence, Austria has emerged as the main power in Eastern Europe. She casts a wary eye towards the Turks and Russians, and worries about a future conflict with France over who will be the dominant power on the Continent.

    French immigration to New France continues to accelerate. In addition to government programs to promote colonization, new economic opportunities combined with a general feeling of optimism about the future of New France contribute to an increase in individual immigration without the aid of the government. Voltaire declares that, though he had once considered New France to be “a few acres of snow,” he would now himself “venture over the pond” if he were a young man.

    Population growth in the British colonies, while still high, has begun to slow down. With fewer prospects for land ownership and a general economic slowdown, immigration to the colonies has decreased. The natural birthrate, however, remains high.

    Benjamin Franklin returns to Philadelphia from London, wishing to devote himself to the issue of colonial unity. From his printing shop come forth a stream of pamphlets and small books, praising the advantages of such a political union. Reaction is mixed. Many colonial leaders find the idea attractive, as they fear the French and have largely lost faith with the British. Others find the idea distasteful, not wishing to lose any power to a general colonial assembly. London does not find the debate of much interest, believing the matter to have already been settled.

    1766:
    With a rising population and strong military presence, the future of New France appears bright. With the programs of immigration now working rather well, the French focus their efforts on diversifying the economy, so as to make it less dependent upon the exports of furs. Fishing and agriculture are emphasized.

    The main goal of French India, in addition to furthering their economic exploitation of the Continent, is to establish political hegemony from Pondicherry to Mahe, thus securing control over all southern India. The British, held in check by the provisions of the Treaty of Paris, remain isolated in Bengal, although the French repeatedly protest to London that British agents and soldiers-of-fortune are attempting to stir up trouble against the French throughout India.

    Late in the year, the French are able to secure a treaty with the Mughal Emperor not to enter into any treaty with the British without French permission. Although this agreement was not taken all that seriously by either side, it marked an important symbolic moment in French domination of India.

    1767:
    Despite continued successes overseas, public opinion in France continues to regard the government with general contempt. The riches flowing in from New France and French India create endless possibilities for corruption. The image of the shady bureaucrat growing rich off his colonial profits while ignoring his administrative responsibilities is a common one in the grub street literature of the time.

    Still, most of the wealth flowing in from overseas does find its way into the larger economy, and France is doing quite well compared to other states. Recognizing that the next conflict with Britain is only a matter of time, the French invest a great deal in improving their naval forces. This seriously alarms the British, who in turn seek to improve their naval strength.

    There are a large number of skirmishes between English settlers and French soldiers along the upper reaches of the Ohio River. While such skirmishes are nothing new, the French become increasingly convinced that the settlers are being prompted to encroach on French territory by the colonial governments, and perhaps the British government itself.

    The population of the French settlements at St. Louis and Montcalm continues to grow, making the nearby natives uneasy. Also, the Catholic Church divides New France into two bishoprics, one in Quebec and one in New Orleans. By this time, the population of New France has reached 150,000, while the population of the English colonies is roughly 1.2 million.

    In India, the French sign a treaty with the Kingdom of Mysore. The French grant Mysore favorable access to French manufactured goods, military arms and French army officers to train their army. In exchange, Mysore promises to support France in any future war with the British and not to enter into any treaty with another European power without French permission.

    Frederick the Great, having been heartbroken and in ill health since his disastrous defeat in the Six Years War, dies.

    1768:
    A major Iroquois raid against the French-allied Algonquin tribe reaches the outskirts on Montreal. French regular troops intervene and a series of battles take place. Having well-learned the value of guerrilla tactics from their Indian allies, the French defeat the Iroquois, killing large numbers of warriors. The defeat of the Iroquois is a setback to the English, who had actually sponsored the raid themselves to test French defenses.

    Despite this impressive victory, Montcalm, still the military commander of New France, remains uneasy when he considers the vulnerability of the colony. He has spent considerable resources building fortifications at Louisburg, Quebec, Montreal and Montcalm itself, and has secured alliances with most of the local Indian tribes. But the population disparity between New France and the English colonies is a constant source of worry and he urges the French government to continue and accelerate their immigration schemes.

    Voltaire publishes his latest novel, Seguin, about a Spanish orphan boy who, through a series of unlikely events, becomes the finance minister of the French government. It satirizes the entire French governmental system and blasts corruption, making the French ruling class look ridiculous. The French government bans the book, Voltaire claims not to have written it and, naturally, it is wildly popular among the literate circles of French society.

    Captain James Cook, of the Royal Navy, sets sail on a voyage of discovery to the Pacific Ocean. He will return in 1771.

    1769:
    At the beginning of the year, King Louis XV appoints Charles Gravier, comte de Vergennes to be Governor General of New France. His appointment is mostly due to his administrative ability, but it is also thought that his strong Anglophobia will result in dynamic action to put the colony in a better position vis-à-vis the British. Montcalm meets him upon his arrival and the two get along rather well.

    As a strong Catholic, Vergennes had not approved of the decision to lift the ban on Protestants settling in the colony. He requests that the King allow him to reinstate the ban, but he is refused (the King reasons that the more Protestants in New France, the fewer in France itself, which he considers a good thing). Still, the Church is delighted by Vergennes’ position and warmly supports him.

    1770:
    The naval arms race between the British and the French continues, creating a drain on their economies. Both see another war as likely to break out in the near future, and the French are determined to invade England when the conflict breaks out. To do this, they know they will need a sufficiently strong navy to deal with the British.

    Further skirmishes between French and English settlers, as well as between Indians tribes allied to the respective nations, cause serious concern in both London and Paris. Vergennes continues to prepare New France for the inevitable showdown with the British.

    The dispatch of a British political mission to the Mughal court at Delhi leads to a French protest. The French argue that it violates the Treaty of Paris, in which the British promised not to intervene in Indian politics outside of Bengal. The British reply that it is merely a trading mission, which the French do not believe.

    1771:
    A newly-elected Whig ministry decides to declare war on France, reasoning that time in on the side of the French in terms of military advantages and that it is better to start a war now rather than later. Using the issue of the diplomatic protest over the mission to Delhi, Britain recalls its ambassador to Paris. On March 10, the Royal Navy is given orders to attack French ships.

    The military outlook at the beginning of the war appears to favor neither side. The population of New France is 200,000, while the population of the British colonies are roughly 1.4 million. However, there are more regular French troops in North America (10,000) than British troops (a mere 2,000, with the colonial governments expected to provide for their own defense). Most Indian tribes are allied to the French, with the only major British ally, the Iroquois, still recovering from their severe defeat by the French a few years earlier.

    In India, Britain is in firm control of Bengal, with a strong army (15,000 sepoys and 2,50 European troops). France has roughly the same number of forces in its territory in southern India, but also has the alliance with the powerful Kingdom of Mysore.

    At sea, France has made great progress in its naval rearmament, resulting in a fleet of 51 ships-of-the-line. Britain still has the edge, with 62 ships-of-the-line, but the margin is less than it had been during the Six Years War.

    The first conflict of the war takes place on June 21, when a French fleet escorting a convoy of troops to New France is intercepted by the Royal Navy. The convoy turns back and makes a run for Brest, with the Royal Navy in hot pursuit. Three French ships-of-the-line are taken, for the loss of one British ship. The convoy itself escapes back to France and the French public treats the affair as a victory. The escape is credited mostly to the leadership of Admiral Pierre Andre de Suffren, who becomes a highly-regarded figure as a result.

    Colonial militias muster to attack New France. Massachusetts and Pennsylvania immediately put large numbers of men into the field, but they are rather poorly equipped. In the meantime, Virginia balks at the number of men expected of it, declaring that it should not be required to send as many men as Pennsylvania, since it is not directly threatened by the French nor in as good a position to take advantage of any seizure of French territory.

    In India, Mysore immediately enters the war on the side of the French. A large Franco-Mysorean army lays siege to Madras, the main British base on the southeastern coast of India. A series of naval battles along the Indian coast produce losses on both sides, but no clear result.

    1772:
    Britain finds itself unable to maintain a strong blockade of France, due to France’s increased naval strength. As a result, French convoys to North America and India are able to get through most of the time, strengthening the French position in both colonial theaters. Of particular concern is the build-up of a large French army and a fleet of transports in Brittany, whose only purpose can be to launch an invasion of Britain itself.

    To compensate, Britain attempts to secure an alliance with a major Continental power in order to divert French resources. It promises Spain a return of Gibraltar in exchange for an alliance, but the Spanish do not trust the British and have also been receiving overtures from the French, who promise that any peace treaty would insist upon a return of Gibraltar.

    The British then approach Austria. Although the Austrians and French are traditional rivals, they were allies during the Six Years War and the British have few bargaining tools with which to negotiate, now that Prussia is no longer a major power. The Austrians, however, fear the expansion of French power and make contingency plans to enter the war against France if it seems that the French may defeat the British.

    Finally, the British approach the Dutch, whose respectable naval power could provide an edge against the French, particularly in the Indian Ocean. The Dutch, however, fear the prospect of a direct French invasion of the Netherlands and make no commitment.

    In North America, a force of 1,500 British regulars (mostly Scottish Highlanders) and 5,000 colonial militia (mostly from Pennsylvania) launches an offensive against Fort Duquesne, which had given the British so much trouble during the Six Years War. Montcalm, commanding the defenders, has about 3,000 men under his command, along with some Indian allies. Despite his inferior numbers, he moves out to meet the British rather than await them in the fortress. This decision would later be widely criticized, but he overconfidently believes he can destroy the enemy force if he defeats it in a pitched battle and is concerned about being besieged.

    The ensuring battle (known as the Second Battle of the Monongahela) was a disaster for the French. The British adopted French tactics and did not move in line formation, as Montcalm expected them to. The British outflanked the French-Indian force as they launched a general attack, leading to a French rout. As he attempted to stem the tide of the battle, Montcalm was struck by a bullet and killed instantly. The remnants of the French force retreated into Fort Duquesne, which the British placed under siege. After four weeks of gallant resistance, the fort falls to the British.

    This French setback was partially offset by a successful defense of Fort Ticonderoga, where a force of 1,000 French troops successfully repulsed an attack by 5,000 Massachusetts militiamen.

    In India, the Royal Navy attempts to relieve the siege of Madras, only to be repulsed by a French squadron (the battle itself was a tactical draw). The city falls to the combined French-Mysorean force on August 23, setting off celebrations in France and doing much to restore confidence after the news of the Second Battle of the Monongahela and the death of Montcalm.

    1773:
    Alarmed by France’s growing power and with the promise of a large British financial subsidy, Austria declares war on France on January 1. Austrian troops are assembled in the Lower Netherlands, preparing for an offensive as soon as they are ready. France, understandably alarmed by this, reinforces the frontier. Although many in the French government wish to transfer the army in Brittany to the Austrian frontier, the decision is made to continue preparations for the invasion of England and remain on the defensive against Austria.

    New France continues to reel from the death of Montcalm and the loss of Fort Duquesne. However, communications with France remain intact and regular convoys of reinforcements and supplies are arriving in Quebec. Since the settlement of Montcalm is too far away for the British to attack successfully, the military leaders of New France adopt a strategy of “active defense” of Montreal and Quebec. They launch raids on British settlements throughout New England, New York and Pennsylvania, keeping the British off-balance and delaying any British offensive.

    In India, French successes continue. All of southern India is now in French hands or under the control of Mysore. The British decide to focus on Europe and North America, hoping to recoup their losses in India at the signing of the peace treaty.

    At sea, on July 12, a French fleet of 20 ships-of-the-line under the command of Admiral Suffren meets a British fleet of comparable size off the coast of Brittany, where the Royal Navy is attempting a blockade. In their first major victory over the British fleet (unless one counts the weather-assisted victory at Quiberon Bay), the French are completely victorious. Suffren takes six British ships-of-the-line and leaves three others burning. Despite heavy losses, not a single French ship is lost. The British are stunned and terrified when the news reaches London.

    Britain immediately withdraws its forces in North America, bringing them back to England to defend against the feared French invasion. The war against New France is left in the hands of the colonies themselves, who rail bitterly against the British government for “abandoning” them.

    Buoyed by the news, Spain declares war on Great Britain on August 31. Immediately, it blockades Gibraltar and commences a bombardment, while the Spanish colonial forces are ordered to attack the British wherever they might be encountered.

    Also in August, at the frantic urging of the British, the Austrians launch their offensive against northern France. They come up against the tried-and-true line of fortresses built to protect the area. Progress is slow and losses are heavy on both sides.

    1774:
    In New France, a colonial force of militia from Massachusetts and other New England states captures Fort Ticonderoga in late August. Plans are laid for an offensive against Quebec itself in the spring of 1775.

    The main Austrian army in the low countries is disastrously defeated by a French force commanded by the Comte de Rochambeau. The Austrians are pushed back over the border into their own territory, with French troops soon to launch their own offensive.

    On September 15, the dream of the French for over a century became a reality. A massive French fleet escorted hundreds of transports, landing 35,000 men on the southwestern coast of England. The Royal Navy attempted to intervene, but in the ensuing Battle of Plymouth, Admiral Suffren cemented his reputation as “Admiral Satan” by again defeating the British and forcing their fleet to withdraw. Among the British causalities is Captain James Cook, killed while bravely fighting the French boarders hand-to-hand.

    Plymouth is placed under French siege and bombarded from the sea. The town surrenders on September 30, giving the French a firm foothold on English soil. The Royal Navy having been defeated, convoys from France began ferrying troops across the English Channel from Cherbourg. Soon, 50,000 French soldiers are in England, with more on the way.

    Panic ensues in London, as French troops begin to fan out across southwest England. The Whig government immediately collapses, and George III opens direct negotiations with Louis XV. Frantically, the British offer peace on almost any terms to the French. On November 30, with the French in occupation of much of England and moving in strength towards Portsmouth and Cambridge, there is a cessation of hostilities.

    On December 15, King Louis XV dies at Versailles. He will be remembered by his subjects as King Louis the Victorious.

    1775:
    The Treaty of London is signed on May 2, bringing an end to King Louis’ War, as it became known. The French were in an unparalleled position of strength and this was made clear in the terms of the treaty.

    • All British territory in India was transferred to France, bringing the vast areas of Bengal under French control. The British East India Company was to be disbanded completely.
    • The territorial limits of the British American colonies were specifically laid out, so as to prevent any misunderstanding which might lead to a future conflict.
    • Gibraltar is returned to Spain, as the French had earlier promised their allies.
    • British military forces would be barred from North America. The British colonies could organize militia only for the purpose of defending against Indian attack or combating slave insurrections. The treaty stipulated that any introduction British military forces would be a cause for war.
    • The Royal Navy would be limited to 2/3 the number of ships as the French Navy.
    The British signed the treaty with great reluctance, but they had little choice in the matter. The French now had upwards of 75,000 men in England, and could probably take London if they desired it.

    The Austrians, being steadily pushed back by the French and now fearing to face the full strength of their enemy, hastily make their own peace with France. The Treaty of Vienna is signed on July 16.. In exchange for recognition of their supremacy in Bavaria, provided that the independence of the state is not compromised, the Austrian Netherlands are transferred to France (much to the alarm of the Dutch).

    Many observers were surprised that Austria gave up its territory in the Low Countries so easily, but there were secret clauses within the Treaty of Vienna which favored the Austrians. France agreed not to interfere with the soon-to-come Austrian and Russia partition of Poland, and also promised not to sell military equipment to the Ottoman Empire.

    The new king, Louis XVI, inherited a nation that was in a more powerful position than it ever had been in during the course of its long history. It was the most powerful nation in the world, its economy was strong and public respect for the monarchy had never been higher. The future for France looked golden.

    MORE TO COME
     
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2006
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  2. Ace Venom Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2004
    There are some errors there that you need to take a look at.

    This sentence makes no sense.

    Why would Russia and Austria partition Russia? Do you mean Poland?

    Interesting timeline.
     
  3. Anaxagoras Vox clamantis in deserto

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    Victory over the BRITISH fleet. And yes, I meant Poland.

    Sorry. Typing too fast, I guess. Edits have been made.
     
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2006
  4. Anaxagoras Vox clamantis in deserto

    Joined:
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    1776:
    Because the Treaty of London prohibits regular British military forces from being stationed in North America, the British Parliament gives the go ahead for the colonies to create the much-discussed “colonial union” for defensive purposes. In Philadelphia, Benjamin Franklin heads up a committee representing the colonies to devise a proper plan.

    Each colony is expected to maintain a militia, with state’s meeting requirements based on their populations. During time of war (with the power to declare war still in the hands of the British government), the militias will be organized under a single command structure and headed by an officer chosen by the crown. The agreement also stipulates that representatives from each colony will meet once a year in Philadelphia to discuss matters of mutual interest. The first meeting is scheduled for June 1, 1777.

    The committee presents its plan to Parliament, which finds it agreeable and orders it to be implemented.

    In Europe, respect for the power of France is at its height. 1776 is the beginning of a “Second Golden Age” of French culture, with the architecture, art, literature and cuisine of France being copied throughout the Continent. Voltaire writes a series of letters and pamphlets, expressing delighting that the rest of Europe was becoming “so civilized” but worrying about the effect it will have on already large French egos.

    France and Spain sign the Holy Alliance, stated to continue in perpetuity. It provides for mutual assistance in colonization efforts and that each will come to the aid of the other in the event of war. Shortly afterwards, the Papal States become a party to the treaty, as Vergennes is eager for France to assume the position of the leading Catholic power, overshadowing Hapsburg Austria.

    In India, British flags are hauled down and French flags go up throughout the Subcontinent. The newly-established British settlement at Calcutta is abandoned, and the Chandannagar (previously a small French outpost in an otherwise British-controlled Bengal) becomes the center of trade in northeastern India. The vast majority of employees of the British East India Company continue to work in their former positions, now serving France rather than Britain.

    Many Indian rulers held the opinion that, with the British removed from India, there commercial and political obligations were also at an end. The French maintained, however, that the rights and privileges held by the British were now held by the French. This misunderstanding, whether accidental or intentional, would have serious consequences.

    In recognition of his service as the Governor-General of New France, Comte de Vergennes is brought back to France and becomes Foreign Secretary. As a passionate French nationalist, Vergennes is determined to increase the power and prestige of France.

    In Great Britain, the political fallout from the disaster of King Louis’ War plays itself out. The Whig arty is completely discredited, having started and lost two wars to the French within twenty years. The Tory Party solidifies its grip on power, operating on a platform of restoring British power while avoiding another conflict with the French.

    1777:
    In India, French attempts to exercise the rights previously held by the British East India Company are rebuffed by numerous Indian princes. In response, France launches military attacks on a number of relatively minor states in central India, with whom the British had held treaties. Assisted, as before, by units from Mysore, the French win a series of quick victories and force the defeated rajas to sign humiliating treaties and accept French and Mysorean garrisons. Seeing the actions of the French, other Indian states either move to mollify the French or begin preparations to resist their encroachments.

    The Committee on Inter-Colonial Defense meets in Philadelphia. Aside from general meet-and-greet sessions and agreements on fortifications around specific ports and towns, little of consequence is discussed. The event is not even mentioned by any newspapers in Great Britain.

    Over half of Poland is seized by Austria and Russia. The Poles appeal to the French for assistance, but adhering to their treaty with the Austrians, the French decline to become involved. Poland is left as a rump state, utterly powerless.

    1778:
    Immigrants from France continue to arrive in New France in large numbers, assisted by favorable government policies and confident that the future of the colony is assured. The population of the territory is now approach 350,000, with 300,000 living in Canada and the remainder along the Mississippi and Ohio rivers. The increasing population makes the Indians uneasy, but they are relieved that the French more or less allow them to live the way they wish and have protected them from the British threat.

    The Netherlands and France sign a mutually beneficial commercial treaty, which alleviates somewhat Dutch suspicion of the French. Nevertheless, the Dutch are investing considerable resources at building up their fortifications along the French border.

    At a symbolically important meeting of French ministers, in the presence of King Louis XVI, Comte de Vergennes lays out his “Four Pillars” of French foreign policy.

    • France must develop and expand its colonial empire.
    • France must prevent a resurgence of British power
    • France must prevent any single power from controlling Germany.
    • France must promote and expand the Holy Alliance.
     
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  5. Nicole Parallel Universe Imajin

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    Location:
    Boston, MA
    Austria seems to be doing quite well, taking Silesia and a large chunk of Poland (though I'd like to see a map of what exactly was taken)..

    It's a good TL overall.
     
  6. Anaxagoras Vox clamantis in deserto

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    I'm embarrased to admit that I have no idea how to make maps.
     
  7. Sir Isaac Brock (Has a giant) Member

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    I like it, a lot.
    You should also consider the repeal of the sengieural system as a way to increase settlement in New France. But depends a lot on political developments.
     
  8. Gremlin Member

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    :mad: Simply outrageous! Anybody of sane mind knows that god is quite clearly an Englishmen!

    :mad: May I suggest that in future, posts such as these are placed in the correct forums. You evidently meant to post in ASB's.

    The moderators shall certainly be hearing of this!



    :p :) :p :) ...
     
  9. Darkest Banned

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    Jan 17, 2005
    This is alternate history, not ASB, to be sure. Though the chances of it are slim, it could happen, and it does not require all-powerful aliens to orchestrate it.

    I like it. Continue.
     
  10. Gremlin Member

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    :mad: must not attempt to feign rage for comic effects!

    Seriously tho' liking the thread - great first post, but maybe some concession to Catholic Ireland in the peace treaty?
     
  11. Darkest Banned

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    Oh, I knew you were kidding, don't worry. | lol |
     
  12. DuQuense Commisioned Officer CSN

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2004
    Location:
    Florida ,CSA
    If france is going to be sending large numbers of settlers to america , they will have to solve the land Title problem First. Britian allowoed you to claim title by squatting on the new lands, while France had doled out legel ownership before.

    I don't see a large wave of French Settlers, France didn't have a large a group of restless unfettered [England pre Industrialization cut lots of people loose from their roots]. And Urban Poor are not good to just dump in the Wilderness.

    Also the Indians will end up not seeing any difference between French Settlers and English. Both are taking the Indian Lands.

    OTL Britian Traded Florida for Cuba, Don't see why it would be Different here. that would give the Developers a area to move into.
    heck --there was a small amount of Colonial settlement occuring before the trade. Here where west is being closed off South would look more open. Could end up with Georgia milita fighting Spainish soldiers and taking the territory. IIRC there were less than 50,000 Spainish in the whole state.
     
  13. SteveW Laffittiste par excellence

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Hampshire
    True, but they could easily be sent to Montreal and Quebec City. And after all, the numbers of poor in Paris at the time was pretty big.

    @Anaxagoras: Great timeline. One or two questions about future developments.
    1. In this timeline, will Danish India continue indefinitely, as it might have done without us Brits thieving them in OTL?
    2. Will the Brits still go and colonise elsewhere?
     
  14. Anaxagoras Vox clamantis in deserto

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    I think Ireland will factor in heavily further down the timeline.
     
  15. Anaxagoras Vox clamantis in deserto

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    1. I'm not sure how India will develop.
    2. Again, not sure. With James Cook mostly out of the picture (having completed only one out of the three voyages), there will likely be a lot of changes in the Pacific.
     
  16. Anaxagoras Vox clamantis in deserto

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    1779:
    It is now estimated that the population of New France is increasing by more than 35,000 a year, due to immigration and an steadily increasing birthrate. This rate is expected to increase as the population grows.

    As the glow of the victory in King Louis’ War begins to fade, general irritation with the regime returns among the French public. Louis XVI is seen as indecisive and incompetent, particularly when compared with his two dynamic predecessors, while his Austrian queen Marie Antoinette is regarding as an out-of-touch buffoon of a woman. Corruption in high circles of government only increases the popular perception.

    But the French people are willing to treat political corruption and royal stupidity as a joke, so long as the economy of France does well. And times are good in France. Wealth flowing in from the colonies contributes to economic activity, and for the have-nots there is always to prospect of immigrating to the New World, where land is available for free to anyone willing to work it.

    1780:
    Louis XVI dispatches an exploratory expedition under the command of the Comte de La Perouse. The objective is to explore the Pacific Ocean and seek out any territories which might be fit for French colonization. Strict orders are given to treat all natives they encounter with respect.

    In Britain, parliamentary debates rage over what to do concerning the possibility of a future war with France. The successful French invasion of England created a national loss of confidence, and many were of the opinion that nothing whatsoever should be done which might provoke France. Others, however, believed in the greatness of Britain and, while not desiring another war, wanted to ensure that Britain would never become a puppet of France.

    At the same time, the Dutch feared the growing power of France. Small and isolated, with no barrier of Hapsburg territory between the Netherlands and France, the Dutch felt particularly vulnerable.

    Great Britain and the Netherlands sign a treaty of defensive alliance, each pledging to come to the assistance of the other should they be attacked. This is widely and correctly perceived as an anti-French alliance, particularly as the combined British and Dutch fleets would be numerically superior to the French fleet. France is concerned about this development, but voices no immediate protest.

    In Britain, after fierce parliamentary debate, funds are allocated for stronger fortifications in coastal towns and for a line of strong fortresses around London, to protect against a potential future French invasion. Dutch fortification experts contribute to the effort.

    1781:
    The La Perouse expedition explores various Pacific Islands, claiming them for France. Venturing south, they explore New Zealand and the eastern coast of Australia, building on the work of the English explorer James Cook.

    At its annual meeting in Philadelphia, the Committee on Inter-Colonial Defense issues an appeal to Parliament, requesting the abolition of the Navigation Acts and the establishment of free trade between Britain and the colonies. They argue that the ban on industrial production in the colonies makes it more difficult to effectively protect their territory from Indian attacks and a potential French invasion.

    The population of New France continues to increase at a faster rate that the population of British America. New France now is the home of 400,000 people, while the population of British America is roughly 1.5 million.

    1782:
    The British Parliament is rather surprised at the request of the Committee on Inter-Colonial Defense. But as the ideas of the Scottish economist Adam Smith have begun to permeate the establishment, the proposal has more backing than it would have had a few years earlier. Parliament accepts the proposal with qualifications, allowing the colonies the freedom to produce their own goods, while keeping intact many tariffs and taxes on trade between Britain and the colonies.

    La Perouse continues his explorations, sailing north to the Pacific coast of America, then back across the Ocean to China, where he sells the furs he had acquired and distributes the profits among his men. He fills the cargo hold with Chinese products and sails for home.

    Vergennes bends his energies towards finding a way to split the alliance between Britain and the Netherlands. Neither on their own is a match for French power, but combined they block the possibility of further French domination of Europe.
     
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  17. Condottiero Knight of the Square Table

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    In OTL the Spanish governor of Cuba allowed fleeing slaves to settle in the border and even to form militias that were quite effective against the Georgians. When Florida was ceded to Britain they were resettled in Cuba.

    They were the first black regiments in North America.
     
  18. Sir Isaac Brock (Has a giant) Member

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    Jan 26, 2004
    Location:
    The Chuck, Albertastan, Canuckia
    @Anaxagoras
    Have you decided how the slavery issue is goingto evolve in British America? And more interestingly in Louisiana and Haiti?

    How about the position of the Native Indians? I think the delayed settlement of the French ITTL vs. the Americans IOTL will reduce conflict but it can't be avioded entirely.

    Keep up the good work.
     
  19. PoorBoy Laborus Tardis

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    Location:
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    What will happen to North Western North America? Is Rupert's Land still British? And how about the Oregon Country? As you are implying, the French sent an expedition there, but have the Spanish or Russian ships and British explorers (by land via Rupert's Land) also reached the area by then?
     
  20. fhaessig Member

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2004
    Location:
    Leiden ( Netherlands )
    I have a question about the state of industrialisation of France at this point. France narrowly missed the first train of industrial revolution ( which only england caugth ) in OTL. Among the main reasons for this was the Law scandal ( brought on by the Regency ) and the bankrupcy of the state and tax burden.

    In this TL, both of these are avoided and french took the Austrian netherlands, which was the second country to industrialise OTL. So, will the french match the british industrial revolution?
     
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