List of Anglo-French conflicts on Hudson Bay
The Anglo-French conflicts on Hudson Bay were a series of conflicts in the 17th and 18th century between England and France for control over the area around the Hudson Bay.
After the English Hudson's Bay Company (HBC) built trading posts on Hudson Bay in 1668, the French tried to drive them out. This started in 1672, continued during King William's War, and mostly ended in 1713, when France recognized British sovereignty over the Bay in the Treaty of Utrecht. The last instance was in 1782, when the French captured Fort Churchill (Prince of Wales Fort).
Since the posts were held by at most a few dozen traders and laborers they could easily be captured by a small group of soldiers, but it was difficult to send soldiers to the Bay and impractical to keep them there over winter. The short ice-free season made it difficult to take all the posts in one year. Thus the posts changed hands more or less at random whenever one side or the other sent a force into the Bay. Only in 1697 did significant British and French forces met on the bay when the Battle of Hudson's Bay was fought.
List of conflicts
- 1658-68: Pierre-Esprit Radisson and Médard des Groseilliers learn that the best furs come from north of Lake Superior. When their plans are rejected at Quebec they turn to the English.
- 1668-69: Proto-HBC trades for one winter at Rupert House. See Médard des Groseilliers.
- 1670: Hudson's Bay Company founded.
- 1670-79: English trading posts built on James Bay. These were: Rupert House (1668, southeast), Moose Factory (1673, south) and Fort Albany (west). See Canadian canoe routes (early)#Hudson Bay.
- 1672: Father Charles Albanel travels from Quebec to Rupert House, but finds it deserted.
- 1674: Albanel again reaches Rupert House. He and Groseillers are sent to England. Father Albanel and French money induce Groseillers to return to the French service.
- 1679: Radisson in Paris. He and Charles Aubert de La Chesnaye soon form the Compaignie du Nord.
- 1682: One French and two English groups reach the mouth of the Hayes River. The French capture the English. See Médard des Groseilliers
- 1686: A large French force from Montreal captures the three HBC posts on James Bay. The HBC now has only York Factory. See Hudson Bay expedition (1686).
- 1688: Pierre Le Moyne d'Iberville in the Soleil d'Afrique returns to James Bay to pick up the remaining furs. He defeats two English ships and returns to France.
- 1688: England's Glorious Revolution leads to renewed war with France (King William's War 1689-1697).
- 1690: D'Iberville tries to capture York Factory but finds it guarded by a warship. He goes south and captures Fort Severn.
- 1693: James Knight captures Fort Albany and 30,000 pelts.
- 1694: D'Iberville captures York Factory (Capture of York Factory).
- 1695: Three Royal Navy frigates recapture York Factory. The French now hold no forts on the bay.
- 1697: Following the naval Battle of Hudson's Bay d'Iberville retakes York Factory. France retains it until 1713.
- After the war ends in 1698 there seems to have been little action.
- 1709: During Queen Anne's War 100 French soldiers try to capture Fort Albany but are driven off. This seems to be the only case of a fort being successfully defended.
- 1713: Treaty of Utrecht: British sovereignty over Hudson Bay recognized by France.
- After 1713 military competition was replaced by economic as the French, and later other British traders, tried to divert trade from the HBC to Montreal. This lasted until 1821 when the HBC absorbed the Montreal traders. In the interior there were scattered fights involving the traders and their Indian allies, but these have left few records.
- 1763: Treaty of Paris: France cedes all of Canada to Britain.
- 1782: La Perouse successfully raids Prince of Wales Fort and York Factory (Hudson Bay expedition).
- Arthur S. Morton, 'A History of the Canadian West to 1870-71', no date, but circa 1940
- Peter C. Newman, 'Empire of the Bay', 1998