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Empires in the Mountains:
French & Indian War Campaigns and Forts in the Lake Champlain, Lake George and Hudson River Corridor

  by Russell P. Bellico $27.50  

Empires in the Mountains book Empires in the Mountains is the first volume to focus entirely on the campaigns and forts along the Lake Champlain, Lake George, and Hudson River corridor during the French and Indian War (1754-1763). It covers the epic battles of the war in the lake valleys, as well as the arduous task of building fortresses and warships in the wilderness of northern New York. Relying on original documents, the book provides a firsthand human dimension in recounting the extraordinary events of the war. Nicholas Westbrook, director emeritus at Fort Ticonderoga, has suggested that "Not since Francis Parkman. . .has the epic story of the "Warpath of Empire" been told with such sweep and such rich detail." Gary Zaboly, author of A True Ranger, called Empires "a commanding history. . .highly readable and authoritative, easily the best single book" on the subject.

The French and Indian War (1754-1763), the North American theater of the Seven Years' War, would change the map of the continent and set the stage for the American Revolution. The conflict, which pitted the French and their Indian allies against the English, has often been misunderstood and largely received minor treatment in most general histories of America. To some, the name of the war itself has been puzzling and somewhat misleading because Britain also had Indian allies during the war.

The war represented a culmination of a century-old struggle for control of North America. The clash was inevitable. English settlers increasingly pushed westward and northward from their original settlements on the east coast, displacing the French and Native Americans. The French population in North America, approximately 55,000 by the middle of the eighteenth century, lived principally along the St. Lawrence River; but New France claimed a vast amount of territory to the west, linked by a string of isolated trading posts and forts. In contrast, the population of the English colonies had expanded from a quarter million inhabitants in 1700 to 1.2 million by 1750. English land companies soon began to encroach on territories claimed by the French. To defend their land holdings, the French built a series of substantial fortifications on the strategic water routes of their empire, including along the Richelieu River-Lake Champlain corridor.

Paperback, 2010, 7" x 10", index, 366 pages, 150 illustrations, $27.50.
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