Dear readers, I had to rearrange my post on the Battle of Jumonville Glen. I added quotations I could no longer find when I finished writing on the Jumonville Skirmish, and I deleted repetitions. I did not rewrite my post.
After the action, Washington retreated to Fort Necessity, where Canadien forces from Fort Duquesnecompelled his surrender. The terms of Washington’s surrender included a statement (written in French, a language Washington did not read) admitting that Jumonville was assassinated. This document and others were used by the French and Canadiens to level accusations that Washington had ordered Jumonville’s slaying.
The Battle of Jumonville Glen, Wikipedia
We will never know whether Washington admitted Jumonville was assassinated. Coulon the Villiers, Coulon de Jumonville’s half brother may have written the confession.
There is information that may never be disclosed. Monceau, the man who escaped, did not see the assassination. So, we do not have a witness. Monceau ran to newly-built Fort Duquesne. However, I found quotations I could no longer locate when fatigue “hit.” I have now retrieved the information I required.
Writing the Battle of Jumonville Glen was very difficult. I had conflicting sources. For instance, I could not determine whether Coulon de Jumonville was killed as the skirmish ended, or later, at Fort Duquesne.
Moreover, my text kept being revised (dialogs). So, I nearly destroyed the post. It seems that Coulon de Jumonville was killed by Tanacharison.
Our only certainties are that Jumonville was killed. Was it immediately after the skirmish or later, at Fort Duquesne. Moreover did Tanacharison kill Jumonville, and where.
I should have mentioned that George Washington (February 1723-December 1799) was only 22 at the Battle of Jumonville Glen. Tanacharison was 54. He died soon after Jumonville Glen, an ambush and skirmish. It is now called a skirmish.
My conclusion is that wars are absurd. The people of New France are still fighting to retain their identity. As well, France lost the Seven Years’ War. Yet, the starting-point was an ambush.
Moreover, my memory is deteriorating. I am perfectly lucid, but it may take me a few minutes to indicate the page or segment I am quoting and I may repeat a word or a sentence. I make spelling errors. So, I will be closing my weblog in the not-too-distant future or discuss fables, or write shorter posts. However, that an ambush should lead to wars, including a world war, is disorienting. So is an entry stating that Washington started the wars. As noted above, Washington was 22 or 23 years old, probably 22, in 1754.
I inserted a source, but I could not separate the source and videos it shows. It is a learned source and the gentleman we hear does not throw stones. The link is the Jumonville Skirmish, but I am now shown Error 404 and information given readers is in French. If one speaks French, the site is available. I’ll search again. The following link may take a reader to information. One mut pay.
Washington was ordered to remove the French from the Ohio Country, which may have given him latitude.
Aubert de Gaspé is not a Malraux. Nor is he a Camus. But Aubert de Gaspé is pointing out the absurdity of war. France lost New France and New France lost its motherland. These consequences are not glitches. The Battle of Quebec 1775 was an early battle during the American Revolutionary War.
Many seigneurs were sent back to France, but Aubert de Gaspé was not. He had descendants.
Through his novel Aubert de Gaspé suggests that one can adjust to changes. Jules did. Aubert de Gaspé also suggests that the enemy may be one’s adopted brother. Jules and Arché are reunited. It is as though, the seigneurs of New France had been in the military. Jules’s father looked old because he had fought battles.
Aubert de Gaspé keeps repeating that the defeated are forever defeated and then says, in full, that at the Treaty of Paris 1763 (“trois ans après”) Louis XV abandoned France’s colony in North America. The Battle of Sainte-Foy was a French victory, but the Battle of the Plains of Abraham, a short confrontation, was deemed the last and lost battle of the French and Indian War (1754-1763) when in fact the last battle, the Battle of Saint-Foy, fought on 28 April 1760, was a French victory. “Nonchalant” Louis XV tossed the Battle of Sainte-Foy aside, turning a victory into a defeat. Not necessarily. Coulon de Villiers could avenge his half-brother’s assassination, However, by 1759, could France reinforce its troops in New France. France was losing the Seven Years’ War.
La Nouvelle-France, abandonnée de la mère patrie, fut cédée à l’Angleterre par le nonchalant Louis XV, trois ans après cette glorieuse bataille qui aurait pu sauver la colonie. Les Anciens Canadiens(XIV: page 321)
I have not been able to determine whether Virginia lieutenant governor Robert Dinwiddie authorized the “ambush” that took place on 28 Mary 1754. But in 1753, George Washington was asked to tell the French to leave the Ohio Country.
Questions do arise? For instance, who initiated the offensive, an ambush, that took place on 28 May 1754? Was it George Washington or Tanacharison, or was it a joint decision by George Washington and Tanacharison? More importantly, as noted above, had Virginia lieutenant governor Robert Dinwiddie authorized the ambush of an encampment of 35 Frenchmen? In Wikipedia’s entry on Robert Dinwiddie, it is stated that Virginia lieutenant governor Robert Dinwiddie started Washington’s military career. In one of the videos embedded in my last post, George Washington opened fire. This could be the case. In fact, if Jumonville did not have a gun, or, if a gun was not at hand, should Washington have shot at Jumonville? Robert Dinwiddie is credited with having started George Washington’s military career. Not quite.
“Washington was heavily criticized in Britain for the incident. British statesman Horace Walpole referred to the controversy surrounding Jumonville’s death as the “Jumonville Affair” and described it as ‘a volley fired by a young Virginian in the backwoods of America that set the world on fire.'” (See Joseph Coulon de Jumonville, Wikipedia.)
Jumonville Glen has been called a battle and the Jumonville Skirmish, but it was an ambush, and Joseph Coulon de Villiers de Jumonville was murdered. George Washington took Tanacharison to the Ohio Country. However, it seems, that Tanacharison took George Washington to ambush Joseph Coulon de Villiers de Jumonville. Whether Virginia Royal Governor Robert Dinwiddie authorized this second event cannot be ascertained. It also seems that Jumonville and a few Frenchmen were killed or wounded and that all of them, but one, were captured. Moreover, Jumonville may have been killed at Fort Duquesne. When Washington surrendered, if he surrendered, he admitted that Jumonville was assassinated. But, as mentioned above, this may not be true.
In fact, “[t]he exact circumstances of Jumonville’s death are a subject of historical controversy and debate.” (See Battle of Jumonville Glen, Wikipedia.)
So Aubert de Gaspé comments on the inanity of wars. But in North American, a war was waged that was a tinier war than the Seven Years’ War, but it was absurdism at its peak. Nouvelle-France fell. Jumonville was not a battle, whether it took place at an encampment or in Fort Duquesne, and the French won the Battle of Saint-Foy. I feel as though I were reading an early draft of Malraux‘s Condition Humaine (Man’s Fate, 1933), or Camus, all of Camus.
Militarily, Jumonville’s brother, Captain Coulon de Villiers, “marched on Fort Necessity on the 3rd of July  and forced Washington to surrender.” (See Joseph Coulon de Jumonville, Wikipedia.) The lex talioniswas at work: an eye for an eye. Humanity has been avenging itself for milennia at a huge cost. Historically, the people of New France change masters overnight. I suspect that Sir Guy Carleton, 1st Baron Dorchester, who passed the Quebec Act of 1774, could tell that the French, the people, did not have to be punished. It is also very refreshing to read Aubert de Gaspé who writes that:
Des deux côtés la bravoure était égale, et quinze mille hommes des meilleures troupes du monde n’attendaient que l’ordre de leurs chefs pour ensanglanter de nouveau les mêmes plaines qui avaient déjà bu le sang de tant de valeureux soldats. Les Anciens Canadiens(XIV: p. 318)
[The courage of both was beyond question, and fifteen thousand of the best troops in the world only awaited the word of their commanders to spring at each other’s throats.] Cameron of Lochiel(XIII: 201-202).
We will continue to read Aubert de Gaspé’s Anciens Canadiens. The backdrop of Aubert de Gaspé’s novel is the defeat of New France, but it happened in a multifaceted conflict. For instance, what was George Washington doing at the battle of Jumonville Glen, the first battle of the French and Indian War? Moreover, although the Royal Proclamation of 1763 and the Quebec Act of 1774 miffed future Americans, why would anyone attack Quebec City at the end of December, when it was much too cold. Canadians could protect themselves, but soldiers living in a warmer land were much too vulnerable.
We are at the very beginning of the American Revolutionary War. Future Americans looked upon George III’s Royal Proclamation of 1763 and Guy Carleton’s Quebec Act of 1774 as “intolerable acts.” Future Americans were defeated by a “motley” garrison (see Battle of Quebec, Wikipedia) under the command of Sir Guy Carleton. By virtue of the Royal Proclamation of 1763, future Americans could not settle west of the Thirteen Colonies. As well, because of the Quebec Act of 1774, Canada’s defeated French-speaking population, who lived in a very large Province of Quebec, were unlikely to join American revolutionary forces.
The Battle of Carillon/Battle of Ticonderoga was quite outstanding, from a military point of view. On the French side, Montcalm and Lévis had a force of 3,600 regulars, militia, & Indians. They were opposed, on the British side, by 6,000 regulars, 12,000 provincial troops, rangers, & Indians. The French built a barrier behind branches, foliage, and other obstacles, creating an impossible terrain, and fired at the advancing troops. The Battle of Beauport or Montmorency was fought on 31 July 1759, which bode quite well for the French. But, at the Battle of the Plains of Abraham, British forces consisted of 4,400 regulars and colonial rangers opposing a garrison of 3,400 men (1,900 regulars and 1,500 colonial militia and natives). Quebec fell. The battle lasted twenty minutes, and both commanders, thirty-two-year-old James Wolfe, and Louis de Montcalm, aged 47, were fatally wounded. (See Battle of Carillon, Wikipedia.)
Cameron of Lochiel, a Highlander, fought at Louisbourg (1758), at the Battle of the Plains of Abraham (1759) and at the Battle of Sainte-Foy (1760). As for Jules d’Haberville, he fought at the Battle of the Plains of Abraham and at the Battle of Sainte-Foy. The former brothers will be reunited despite Jules’s inimical first reaction.
The Plains of Abraham and the Battle of Sainte-Foy
Aubert de Gaspé describes the Battle of the Plains of Abraham and the Battle of Sainte-Foy. Gaspé’s numbers may not be accurate. Moreover, Aubert de Gaspé believes that the French won the Battle of Saint-Foy. So do other sources. In chapter XIV/XIII, Jules d’Haberville and Cameron of Lochiel are reunited and Aubert de Gaspé’s description of the defeated is very eloquent. The defeated are forever defeated.
Vae victis ! dit la sagesse des nations ; malheur aux vaincus ! non seulement à cause des désastres, conséquences naturelles d’une défaite, mais aussi parce que les vaincus ont toujours tort.
At the Battle of Sainte-Foy, fought on 18 April 1760. The French had 5,000 regulars and militia and The British forces consisted of 3,800 men. On the British side, a total of 1,259 men were killed and 829, wounded. Three-quarters of British casualties were Fraser Highlanders. The French lost 146 men and 640 were wounded. Aubert de Gaspé views the Battle of Sainte-Foy as a French victory, but it did not tip the balance at the Treaty of Versailles 1763. France had abandoned its North American colony.
Aubert de Gaspé devotes one chapter to Les Plaines d’Abraham, it is Chapter XIV in the original French text and Chapter XIII (p. 198) in Cameron of Lochiel, Sir Charles G. D. Roberts’s translation. The Plains of Abraham therefore follows the Chapter entitled L’Incendie de la côte du sud which reveals Arché’s struggle as a soldier who is ordered to harm his Canadiens friends. However, continuity is not broken.
– Tu as vaincu, Montgomery ; mes malédictions retombent maintenant sur ma tête ; tu diras que j’ai déserté à l’ennemi ; tu publieras que je suis un traître que tu soupçonnais depuis longtemps. Tu as vaincu, car toutes les apparences sont contre moi. Ta joie sera bien grande, car j’ai tout perdu, même l’honneur. Et, comme Job, il s’écria : – Périsse le jour qui m’a vu naître !
[“You have conquered, Montgomery; my curses recoil upon my own head. You will proclaim that I have deserted to the enemy, that I am a traitor as you long suspected. You will rejoice indeed, for I have lost all, even honor.” And like Job, he cursed the day that he was born.]
As a soldier, Arché is rehabilitated in the Battle of Quebec.
De Locheill s’était vengé noblement des soupçons injurieux à sa loyauté, que son ennemi Montgomery avait essayé d’inspirer aux officiers supérieurs de l’armée britannique. Ses connaissances étendues, le temps qu’il consacrait à l’étude de sa nouvelle profession, son aptitude à tous les exercices militaires, sa vigilance aux postes qui lui étaient confiés, sa sobriété, lui valurent d’abord l’estime générale ; et son bouillant courage, tempéré néanmoins par la prudence dans l’attaque des lignes françaises à Montmorency, et sur le champ de bataille du 13 septembre 1759, fut remarqué par le général Murray, qui le combla publiquement de louanges.
[Lochiel had cleared himself nobly of the suspicions which his foe, Montgomery, had sought to fix upon203 him. His wide knowledge, his zeal in the study of his profession, his skill in all military exercises, his sobriety, his vigilance when in guard of a post, all these had put him high in esteem. His dashing courage tempered with prudence in the attack on the French lines at Montmorency and on the field of the first Battle of the Plains had been noticed by General Murray, who commended him publicly.]