Chronology of Major Battles from 1000-1754
This chronology is not exhaustive, but provides a list of the most important battles, inside and outside Canada, from the year 1000 to 1754.
The Vikings attacked natives, killing eight of the people they called Skraelings, probably in Labrador. The natives counter-attacked, and Thorvald, the Viking chief, was killed. A few years later, a Viking colony, possibly in Newfoundland, repulsed a Skraeling attack. The settlement was abandoned, however, a few months later.
Charlesbourg-Royal. Iroquoians attacked the French spending the winter with Jacques Cartier in CharlesbourgRoyal (Cap-Rouge, Quebec).
Battles between French and Spanish Basque vessels off the coast of Labrador.
Battle in Frobisher Bay between Inuit warriors and the English expedition led by Martin Frobisher.
Battles between Frenchmen and Amerindians near Stage Harbour, Massachusetts.
1609 (July 30)
Champlain and some Frenchmen took part in an attack on the Iroquois by the Algonquins and Montagnais near Crown Point, on Lake Champlain. Champlain killed two Iroquois chiefs with his harquebus, and the other warriors fled.
1610 (June 19)
Champlain accompanied some Montagnais and Algonquins along the "Iroquois" River (Richelieu). They beat off an Iroquois attack.
Battles between Spanish Basques and Peter Easton, an English pirate, at Harbour Grace, Newfoundland.
Samuel Argall, who had sailed from Virginia with 60 men and 14 cannons, destroyed the Habitations of SaintSauveur and Port-Royal in Acadia.
1615 (October 11-12)
Champlain, a few Frenchmen and some Huron, Algonquin and Montagnais warriors laid siege to a Seneca fort south of Lake Ontario in the Oswego region, without success.
The Kirke brothers, English privateers, captured a French fleet sailing for Quebec City with colonists and provisions. About 1,200 cannon shots were fired on July 17th and 18th near Barnabé Island in the St. Lawrence. As a result, Champlain surrendered Quebec City without a struggle on July 19, 1629.
In the spring, the English captured a French fishing vessel at Port-aux-Baleines, on Cape Breton Island. They built a habitation, which was in turn taken on September 18th by the French captain Daniel. In the meantime, the Scot William Alexander seized Port-Royal.
A skirmish between the Iroquois and Governor Montmagny near Trois-Rivieres marked the beginning of a new French-Iroquois war.
1642 (August 20)
Three hundred Iroquois attacked Fort Richelieu (Sorel), then under construction, but were repulsed by the small garrison of about 40 soldiers. The fort was abandoned in 1646 and burned down by the Iroquois in 1647.
1644 (March 30)
Battle at Ville-Marie (Montreal) pitting Maisonneuve, accompanied by 30 men, against 80 Iroquois. Maisonneuve was forced to withdraw.
Destruction of Huronia by the Iroquois. The Huron, Neutral and Petun nations were scattered. Of a population of 12,000, about 3,000 were massacred or captured, 2,000 surrendered to the enemy, and 400 took refuge first on Orléans Island and then at Lorette. The others scattered over the western territories.
1652 (October 14)
Near Montreal, Major Lambert Closse and 34 men repulsed about 200 Iroquois.
1654 (August 30)
A group of 250 Ottawas, who had come to trade for the first time on the St. Lawrence, was attacked by about 120 Mohawks.
1660 (May 2-15)
Dollard des Ormeaux and his 16 companions, helped by four Algonquins and 40 Hurons, were overwhelmed by 700 Iroquois at Long-Sault on the Ottawa River (Carillon, Quebec).
Tracy, Courcelles and Salières entered Iroquois country with 700 soldiers, 400 Canadian volunteers and about 100 Hurons and Algonquins, burning four Iroquois villages as well as the crops of their inhabitants.
Iroquois guerilla warfare against the French and their Amerindian allies.
The Chevalier de Troye and the Le Moyne brothers (d'Iberville, Sainte-Hélène and Maricourt), leading 30 soldiers and 70 Canadians, captured the English forts of Moose Factory (renamed Saint-Louis), Rupert or Charles House (renamed Saint-Jacques) and Albany (Sainte-Anne) on Hudson Bay.
Denonville, with 800 soldiers, 1,100 militiamen and 400 Amerindians, ravaged Seneca country, thereby preventing the Iroquois and English from taking over control of the fur trade from the French.
A raid by 100 to 200 Iroquois was repelled at Fort Chambly.
1689 (August 4-5)
One thousand five hundred Iroquois attacked Lachine, killing 24 and taking about 80 prisoners.
Du Luth, d'Ailleboust and 28 Canadians defeated 22 Iroquois at Lac des Deux-Montagnes.
Three different expeditions composed of Canadians and Amerindians attacked and destroyed villages in New England. They were led by d'Ailleboust de Manthet and Le Moyne de Sainte-Hélène at Corlaer (Schenectady); by Hertel de Rouville at Salmon Falls; and by Portneuf and Courtemanche, assisted by Saint-Castin, at Casco (Portland, Maine).
William Phips, with three ships and 446 soldiers and officers, captured Pentagouet and Port-Royal.
La Porte de Louvigny, with 143 voyageurs and 30 soldiers, defeated an Iroquois band at Lac des Chats.
D'Iberville, with three ships, took Fort New Severn, commanded by Thomas Walsh.
Phips, with 34 ships and 2,300 militiamen, attacked Quebec City. Frontenac responded "through the muzzle of [his] cannons." Phips withdrew with considerable losses.
Iroquois raids on French settlements between Montreal and Trois-Rivières.
A raid led by Major Peter Schuyler with 300 militiamen and Iroquois was repulsed at Laprairie.
1692 (June 7)
Vaudreuil, with a detachment of soldiers, Canadians and Amerindians surprised and annihilated 40 Iroquois at Repentigny.
Young Madeleine de Verchères held out for three days against Iroquois besieging Fort Verchères. She used a ruse to give the impression that the fort was defended by a strong garrison, whereas in fact she was there with only two soldiers, one servant, her two young brothers and a few women.
Frenchmen and Abenakis beat off an English attack on Fort Naxouat or Saint-Joseph (Fredericton, New Brunswick).
Three Iroquois villages north of Albany were attacked and destroyed by the French.
James Knight recaptured Fort Albany from the French.
Captain Claude-Sébastien de Villieu, assisted by 200 Abenakis, ravaged several English settlements in New Hampshire.
Pierre Le Moyne d'Iberville and his brother, Le Moyne de Sérigny, with two ships, besieged and recaptured Fort York on Hudson Bay. This post, previously commanded by Thomas Walsh, was retaken by the English in 1696.
Frontenac, Callières and Ramezay, with 2,000 soldiers, militiamen and Amerindians, destroyed an evacuated Onondaga village and its entire crop, near Oswego. Pierre Le Moyne d'Iberville, with two ships and the support of 240 Abenakis under Saint-Castin and 25 soldiers under Villieu, attacked Fort Pemaquid (William Henry, Maine), defended by only 95 men under the command of Pascoe Chubb. Chubb capitulated on August 15.
Major Benjamin Church, with 400 men and 50 Amerindians, besieged Fort Naxouat. Vllebon, with about 100 Frenchmen as well as some allied Amerindians, succeeded in repulsing the attack.
(November to March, 1697)
Pierre Le Moyne d'Iberville and Jacques François de Mombeton de Brouillan, commandant of Plaisance, seized St. John's and all English posts in Newfoundland, with the exception of Bonavista and Carbonear Island.
1697 (September 5)
Naval encounter near Fort York on Hudson Bay between the Pelican, commanded by d'Iberville, and three English ships. The Hampshire and Hudson Bay were sunk. Only the Dering succeeded in escaping. Fort York was taken by the French shortly thereafter.
An English attack on Fort Naxouat was repulsed.
Jean-Baptiste Hertel de Rouville, with 50 Canadians and 200 Amerindians, destroyed Deerfield, Massachusetts.
La Grange, with 100 Canadians and two boats, seized a frigate and burned two ships at Bonavista.
The French governor of Port-Royal, Brouillan, repulsed a fleet of three warships, 14 transport ships and 36 smaller boats carrying 550 men under the command of Colonel Benjamin Church.
Subercase, with 450 Canadians and Micmacs, seized Bay Bulls and Petit Havre, but failed to capture the fort of St. John's, defended by Lieutenants Moody and Latham. Montigny captured the post of Bonavista.
An English fleet, led by Major Lloyd, ravaged the St. Malo fishing stations in Newfoundland between Cape Freels and the Strait of Belle Isle.
(June and August)
On two occasions in June and August, expeditions from New England attacked Port-Royal, but without success. Port-Royal was defended by Subercase and a small garrison, along with Saint-Castin's son and some Abenakis.
1708 (August 29)
Jean-Baptiste Hertel de Rouville, Jean-Baptiste de SaintOurs Deschaillons and 200 men attacked and destroyed the village of Haverhill, Massachusetts. On the way back, they repelled an attack by 60 men under the command of Captain Ayer.
Captain Joseph de Saint-Ovide with 170 Frenchmen, Canadians and Amerindians captured St. John's, Newfoundland. The garrison surrendered on January 1, 1709.
1710 (October 13)
Governor Subercase and the 150 soldiers defending PortRoyal capitulated to Colonel Francis Nicholson, who had sailed from New England with a fleet of 36 ships carrying 3,600 men, including 600 regular soldiers.
The Foxes, a nation from west of Lake Michigan, attempted to seize the post of Detroit, near which they had recently settled. The Ottawas and Illinois helped Dubuisson and about 20 soldiers to counterattack, defeating the Foxes.
Captain Louis La Porte de Louvigny, with 225 soldiers and militiamen as well as a number of Amerindians, attacked the Foxes in their homeland of Wisconsin, obtaining a surrender.
Amerindians surrounded Annapolis Royal, but failed to dislodge the British garrison.
Governor General Beauharnois sent an army of 400 Frenchmen and 800 Amerindians, under the command of Constant Le Marchand de Lignery, after the Foxes. Although their villages and crops were burned, the Foxes succeeded in escaping.
Saint-Ange, an officer from Louisiana; Villiers, commandant of Fort Saint Joseph; and Noyelles, commandant of Fort Miami, combined their French and Amerindian forces in order to attack and destroy the main Fox village.
The Foxes allied themselves with the Sauks (Sacs), and attacked and killed Villiers along with several other Frenchmen.
A French and Amerindian expedition under Noyelles attacked the Foxes and Sauks in their fort on the Des Moines River, in Iowa. After a few skirmishes, a treaty was concluded.
1740 (February 22)
Céléron de Blainville, with about 100 soldiers and Canadian militiamen as well as 200 Amerindian allies, successfully attacked the Chickasaws, near the present city of Memphis, Tennessee. The Chickasaws signed a peace treaty.
Naval expedition from Louisbourg, led by du Vivier. With 344 men, he captured and destroyed Canso, Nova Scotia, which was defended by 120 soldiers under the command of Captain Patrick Heron.
Du Vivier laid siege to Annapolis Royal with 50 soldiers and about 200 Amerindians. De Gannes, the commandant of Louisbourg, put an end to the attack and the French withdrew.
1745 (May June)
Louisbourg was captured by a force of more than 4,000 New England militiamen, under the command of William Pepperell. Governor Duchambon surrendered after a siege of 47 days, together with 1,500 men, some from the Compagnies franches de la Marine, and a detachment from Karrer's Swiss Regiment, as well as canonniersbombardiers and militiamen.
Lieutenant Paul Marin, leading 400 Frenchmen and 200 Abenakis and Micmacs, destroyed Saratoga, capturing 100 men.
An American expedition against Île Saint-Jean (Prince Edward Island) was defeated near Port La Joie by a French garrison consisting of about 15 soldiers and 100 Micmacs.
Rigaud de Vaudreuil, with 400 militiamen and 300 Amerindians, captured Fort Massachusetts (Adams, Massachusetts) and its garrison of 22 men.
1747 (February 12)
Coulon de Villiers, Louis de la Corne, and a detachment of 236 Canadians and 50 Micmacs attacked Grand Pré (Nova Scotia), which was occupied by a regiment from Massachusetts. The Americans surrendered.
The Chevalier de Niverville burned five forts and 100 houses that had been abandoned by their inhabitants near Haverhill, Massachusetts.
A French raid on Fort No. 4 (Charlestown, New Hampshire) was repulsed.
Luc La Corne de Saint-Luc, with about 20 soldiers and militiamen and about 200 Amerindians, attacked Fort Clinton (near Easton, New York).
Lieutenant Chew and about 100 American volunteers were defeated by the French and taken to Fort SaintFrédéric as prisoners.
1748 (July 5)
Lunnenburg (now Ashby, Massachusetts) was stormed by a Canadian expedition.
About 70 American militiamen were attacked near Schenectady and withdrew after losing about 30 men.
1752 (June 21)
At Pickawillany (Pica, Ohio), 250 Amerindian allies, under the cadet Mouët de Langlade, attacked the Miami band led by Chief Memeskia, who was friendly with the British. Eight Ango-American traders were captured.
1754 (May 28)
Washington, with about 400 Americans and Amerindians, attacked Enseign Jumonville. Jumonville, leading 32 Canadians, had come to deliver a demand that Washington leave French territory.
Coulon de Villiers, brother of Jumonville, attacked Washington at Fort Necessity with 600 Frenchmen and 100 Amerindians. The fort was defended by 400 men with nine cannons. Washington capitulated.
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