The Colonial Wars, 1689-1762

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Although the colonial wars consisted of almost continuous raids and skirmishes between the English and French colonists and their Indian allies and enemies, they can be separated into four major conflicts, corresponding to four European wars of which they were, in varying degrees, a part: King William's War (1689-97) (War of the League of Augsburg); Queen Anne's War (1702-13) (War of the Spanish Succession); King George's War (1744-48) (War of the Austrian Succession); and The French and Indian War (1755-62) (Seven Years' War). Mr. Peckham chronicles the events of these wars, summarizing the struggle for empire in America among France, England, and Spain. He indicates how the colonists applied the experience they gained from fighting Indians to their engagements with European powers. And what they learned from the colonial wars they translated into a political philosophy that led to independence and self-government. The ready involvement of the colonies in European ambitions, the success and failure of co-operation between colony and mother country, the efforts of the English colonies together, and the growing differences between them and Britain give the narrative continuity and rising excitement.