Siege of Port Royal (1710)
|Siege of Port Royal|
|Part of |
Portrait believed to be of Francis Nicholson, by Michael Dahl, c. 1710
|Commanders and leaders|
Daniel d'Auger de Subercase|
Simon-Pierre Denys de Bonaventure
|about 2,000 regular and provincial soldiers||fewer than 300|
|Casualties and losses|
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The siege of Port Royal (5–13 October 1710),
The siege was the third British attempt during
The Conquest of Acadia was a foundational moment in the history of the Canadian state—it was a precursor to the British conquests of Louisbourg and Quebec in the middle of the century.
With the outbreak of the
English merchants in Boston had long traded with Port Royal, and some of this activity had continued illegally after the war began. However, the business was being hurt by the war, and some merchants began making vocal calls for action, and public outrage rose over the failure of the Massachusetts defenses to stop the French and aboriginal raids. Massachusetts Bay Governor Joseph Dudley had made repeated requests to London for support without any success, and finally decided to act independently to fend off accusations of complicity in the illegal trade. In spring of 1707, he authorized an expedition against Port Royal. This expedition made two separate attempts to take Port Royal; for a variety of reasons, both attempts failed despite the expedition's significant numerical superiority.
British expedition organized
In the following years, France failed to send any significant support, while the British mobilized larger and better-organized forces for the conflict in North America. Samuel Vetch, a Scots businessman with colonial ties, went to London in 1708 and lobbied Queen Anne for military support to conquer all of New France. She authorized a "great enterprise" to conquer all of Acadia and Canada in 1709 that was aborted when the promised military support failed to materialize. Vetch and Francis Nicholson, an Englishman who had previously served as colonial governor of Maryland and Virginia, returned to England in its aftermath, and again appealed to the queen for support. They were accompanied by four aboriginal chiefs, who caused a sensation in London. Nicholson and Vetch successfully argued on behalf of colonial interests for British military support against Port Royal.
Nicholson arrived in Boston on 15 July 1710, bearing a commission from the queen as "General and Commander-in-Chief of all and sundry the Forces, to be employed in the expedition design'd for the reducing of Port Royal in Nova Scotia".
Port Royal defences
Port Royal was defended by about 300 troops, many of whom were poorly trained recruits from France. Subercase had taken steps to improve the local defences since the 1707 sieges, building a new bomb-proof powder magazine and barracks in 1708, and clearing woods from the river banks to deny attackers cover. He completed the construction of another vessel to assist in naval defence, and engaged privateers with great success against New England fishing and shipping. From prisoners taken by the privateers he learned that plans were continually being made in 1708 and 1709 for new attempts on Port Royal.
As the fleet sailed north, it was met by a dispatch vessel sent by Thomas Matthews, captain of the Chester. She carried deserters from the French garrison, who reported that morale was extremely low.
The following day, 6 October, British marines began landing both north and south of the fortress and the town. The northern force was joined by four New England regiments under Colonel Vetch, while Nicholson led the remaining New England troops as part of the southern force. The landings took place without incident, with fire from the fort answered by one of the fleet's
Over the next four days the British landed their cannons and brought them up to the camp. Fire from the fort and supporters outside it persisted, and the British bomb ships wrought havoc within the fort with their fire each night. With the opening of new British batteries imminent, Subercase sent out an officer with a parley flag on 10 October. The negotiations got off to a bad start because the officer was not properly announced by a drummer, and deteriorated from there. Each side ended up holding an officer of the other, principally over matters of military etiquette, and the British continued their siege work.
By 12 October, the siege trenches had advanced, and cannons that were within 300 feet (91 m) of the fort opened fire. Nicholson sent Subercase a demand that he surrender, and negotiations began once more. By the end of the day, the parties reached an agreement on the terms of surrender, which was formally signed the next day.
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The British took formal possession of Port Royal following a ceremony on 16 October, in which they renamed the place Annapolis Royal in honour of their queen. Samuel Vetch was inaugurated as the new governor of Nova Scotia. Massachusetts and New Hampshire proclaimed a day of public thanksgiving.
The first French attempt to retake Annapolis Royal happened the next year. After a skirmish in which a party of British soldiers was ambushed, Bernard-Anselme d'Abbadie de Saint-Castin lead a force of 200 Acadians and native warriors in a siege of the fort, without success.
The capture of Port Royal marked the end of French rule in peninsular Acadia, and inaugurated a struggle for control of the territory that lasted until the British conquests of the
Acadia's people were placed in a difficult position by the conquest. The British on numerous occasions demanded they take oaths to the British Crown, but many refused to take oaths requiring them to take arms against the French, preferring to proclaim their neutrality. For this and other reasons, hundreds of Acadians left peninsular Nova Scotia over the next decade. Most of them avoided the principal French colonial settlements and went to French-occupied Isle Saint-Jean.
Acadia's border was not formally demarcated by the Treaty of Utrecht, which became a cause of ongoing friction between the British and French, especially on the Isthmus of Chignecto, which both sides eventually fortified. The French interpreted the phrase ancient boundaries to imply only the peninsula of present-day Nova Scotia, thereby excluding the mainland between New England and the St. Lawrence, ÎLe St. Jean, and Cape Breton. This helped the aboriginal groups of Abenaquis, Malecites, and Mi'kmaq to retain their sovereignty over their old hunting grounds.
In 1746, the
The territorial dispute would not be fully resolved until the British conquest of New France in 1760, and the informal boundary between the British and French in the dispute (the Missaguash River) now forms the border between the Canadian provinces of Nova Scotia and New Brunswick.
Order of battle
- Colonel Francis Nicholson
- HMS Dragon, 50 guns, Captain George Martin
- HMS Falmouth, 50 guns, Captain Walter Riddell
- HMS Chester, 50 guns, Captain Thomas Mathews
- HMS Lowestoffe, 32 guns, Captain George Gordon
- HMS Feversham, 35 guns, Captain Robert Paston
- HMS Starr, Commander Thomas Rochfort
- Province Galley, Captain Cyprian Southack
- Land forces
- Colonel Adjutant General
- Captain Walter Elliot, Brigade Major
- Battalion of Marines, [n 4] Colonel Robert Reading
- Hobby's Regiment (Massachusetts Bay), Colonel Sir Charles Hobby.
- Tailer's Regiment (Massachusetts Bay), Colonel William Tailer.
- Whiting's Regiment (Connecticut), Colonel William Whiting.
- Walton's Regiment (New Hampshire), Colonel Shadrach Walton.
- Company of Gunner and Matrosses, Colonel Samuel Vetch, Captain.
- Company of Indian Scouts (Iroquois Indians), Major of Scouts John Livingston, Captain.
- Captain Daniel d'Auger de Subercase, Governor of Acadia
- 150 soldiers of the Compagnies Franches de la Marine
- 100 men of the Acadian Militia
- Some Canadians
- Some privateers
- Military history of the Mi’kmaq People
- Military history of the Acadians
- Military history of Nova Scotia
- New Style; many older English accounts use Old Style dates for this action: 24 September to 2 October
- ^ According to Grenier (2008), p. 12, prior to 1710, English forces had only raided, sacked, and temporarily occupied French colonial possessions. Other territories the English conquered came at the expense of other nations or aboriginals.
- Mi'kmaq people.
- Churchill'sregiments of marines.
- ^ a b c Peckham, p. 84
- ^ a b c Griffiths (2005), p. 234.
- ^ a b Drake, p. 259
- ISBN 978-0-8020-8538-2.
- ISBN 0-03-053427-5.
- ^ Grenier (2008), p. 15.
- ^ Prins, pp.1-2; Reid et al, p. x
- ^ McKay, Ian and Bates, Robin. In the Province of History: The Making of the Public Past in Twentieth-Century Nova Scotia. McGill-Queen's University Press. 2010. p. 78.
- ^ MacVicar, pp. 13–29
- ^ MacVicar, pp. 41–44
- ^ Baudry, René (1979) . "Monbeton de Brouillan, Jacques-François de". In Hayne, David (ed.). Dictionary of Canadian Biography. Vol. II (1701–1740) (online ed.). University of Toronto Press.
- ^ Drake, pp. 193–202
- ^ Drake, p. 202
- ^ Faragher (2005), p. 113.
- ^ a b Peckham, p. 66
- ^ Drake, p. 225
- ^ a b Faragher (2005), p. 114.
- ^ Rawlyk, p. 100
- ^ Drake, pp. 225–236
- ^ MacVicar, p. 60
- ^ Griffiths (2005), p. 224.
- ^ Drake, pp. 250–254
- ^ Drake, pp. 254–256
- ^ a b c Griffiths (2005), p. 233.
- ^ a b c Reid et al, p. 7
- ^ Rawlyk, p. 117
- ^ MacVicar, p. 61
- ^ MacVicar, pp. 58–60
- ^ a b Reid et al, p. 8
- ^ a b c Reid, p. 9
- ^ MacVicar, p. 62
- ^ Dunn, p. 83
- ^ a b c Griffiths (2005), p. 235.
- ^ Reid, pp. 9–10
- ^ Reid et al, p. 10
- ^ Reid et al, pp. 11–12
- ^ Donald Chard. Canso, 1710–1721: Focal Point of New England-Cape Breton Rivalry. Nva Scotia Historical Society. 1975. p. 50.
- ^ MacVicar, p. 68
- ^ Reid, p. 26
- ^ Griffiths (2005), p. 253.
- ^ MacVicar, pp. 69–70
- ^ Plank, p. 65
- ^ W.J. Eccles, France in America, Fitzhenry & Whiteside Ltd. p. 107
- ^ ARSENAULT, Bona, Histoire des Acadiens, Bibliothèque nationale du Québec. 1978. Leméac p. 140
- ^ Fryer, p. 50
- ^ Ells, p. 8
- ^ Campbell & Kent 1785, vol. 5, p. 116.
- ^ Drake 1897, p. 259.
- ^ Dalton 1904, pp. 283-290.
- ^ Bouton 1864, p. 453.
- ^ Chartrand 1993, p. 162.
- ^ Baudry 1969, p. 38.
- Baudry, René (1969). "Aguer de Subercase." Dictionary of Canadian Biography. Toronto: 35–39.
- Bouton, Nathaniel (1869). Documents and papers relating to the Province of New Hampshire. Vol. III. Manchester.
- Campbell J. & Kent, John (1785). Biographia nautical. Dublin.
- Chartrand, Rene (1993). Canadian Military Heritage. Vol. 1. Art Global, Inc.
- Dalton, Charles (1904). English Army Lists and Commissions Registers, 1661–1714. Vol. VI. 1707–1714. London: Eyre and Spotswoode.
- Drake, Samuel Adams (1910) . The Border Wars of New England. New York: C. Scribner's Sons. OCLC 2358736.
- Dunn, Brenda (2004). A History of Port-Royal/Annapolis Royal 1605–1800. Halifax, NS: Nimbus. OCLC 54775638.
- Ells, R. W (1907). The Geology and Mineral Resources of New Brunswick. Publications of the Geological Survey of Canada. Ottawa: Geological Survey of Canada. OCLC 623250098.
- ISBN 978-0-393-05135-3.
- Fryer, Mary Beacock (1986). Battlefields of Canada. Toronto: Dundurn Press. OCLC 15554679.
- Grenier, John (2008). The Far Reaches of Empire: War in Nova Scotia, 1710-1760. University of Oklahoma Press. ISBN 978-0-8061-3876-3.
- Griffiths, N.E.S. (2005). From Migrant to Acadian: A North American Border People, 1604-1755. McGill-Queen's University Press. ISBN 978-0-7735-2699-0.
- MacVicar, William (1897). A Short History of Annapolis Royal: the Port Royal of the French, From its Settlement in 1604 to the Withdrawal of the British Troops in 1854. Toronto: Copp, Clark. OCLC 6408962.
- Peckham, Howard (1964). The Colonial Wars, 1689–1762. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. OCLC 1175484.
- Plank, Geoffrey (2001). An Unsettled Conquest. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press. OCLC 424128960.
- Rawlyk, George (1973). Nova Scotia's Massachusetts. Montreal: McGill-Queen's University Press. OCLC 1371993.
- Reid, John; Basque, Maurice; Mancke, Elizabeth; Moody, Barry; Plank, Geoffrey; Wicken, William (2004). The 'Conquest' of Acadia, 1710: Imperial, Colonial, and Aboriginal Constructions. Toronto: University of Toronto Press. OCLC 249082697.
- Society of Colonial Wars (1897). Publications of the Society of Colonial Wars, Number 3. Boston: self-published. OCLC 5250963. Contains muster rolls and other documents concerning Massachusetts participation, as well as an official British account of the expedition.
- John Charmock Biographia Navalis. 1794, p. 199
- A Complete History Of The Most Remarkable Transactions At Sea From The Earliest Accounts Of Time. 1714
Coordinates: 44°44′30″N 65°30′55″W / 44.74167°N 65.51528°W
- Military history of Acadia
- Military history of Nova Scotia
- Military history of New England
- 1710 in Canada
- Sieges involving France
- Sieges involving Great Britain
- Battles of the War of the Spanish Succession
- Conflicts in Nova Scotia
- Conflicts in 1710
- New France
- Pre-statehood history of Massachusetts
- Queen Anne's War
- 1710 in Nova Scotia
- Sieges of the War of the Spanish Succession