Essay about The Significance of Trans-Appalachian Frontier

Submitted By YZHENG03
Words: 1693
Pages: 7

Yujing Zheng
October 2, 14

Continental History is Part of the Atlantic History: Trans-Appalachian Frontier Is Not the Most Significant Area Throughout the Atlantic History

Normally introduced as separate warfare, each of the wars duringin the period fromof 1754 to 1815, including Seven Years’ War, American Revolution, Indian Wars, and the War of 1812, were in fact intimately linked as dominos. In his article, “Trans-Appalachian Frontier in Atlantic History”, Francois Furstenberg stressed the importance of Trans-Appalachian Frontier in Atlantic hHistory by attributing the main causes for these wars to this regionarea. Furstenberg was right in that the trans-Appalachian Frontier accounted for the start of the wars during the period of the Long War for the West period, but he failed to consider the importance of Britain’s that contributioned more to the start of the Long War for the West (especially American Revolution). Also, referring to the Atlantic history, the series of wars in the New World wereas one of the major components but was not enough without mentioning the Atlantic trade and the role of freedom in the colonies. In this essay, I will address the mostre significant factor in the American Revolution – Britain – and explain how the trade and notions ofthe freedom made the Caribbean and France essential in Atlantic history.

In Furstenberg’s view, the war dominos were standing in a row, awaiting something in the trans-Appalachian frontier to touch the first domino in 1754. While Native American forces had been dominating the Trans-Appalachian West for centuries, since 1754 the start of the Seven Years’ War, the aggressive intruders, (British and American in particular), who kept harassing the Natives by acquiring their lands in that area, forced them to organize and participate a series of battles to resist invaders and to retain their territorial rights over the Trans-Appalachian region. The competition about the sovereignty over Trans-Appalachian Frontier finally caused the Long War.

The Native American’s reactions after Seven Years’ War were particularly interesting in explaining how the Trans-Appalachian Frontier started the Pontiac’s War. As Furstenberg addressed, after the Seven Years’ War, Native Americans were unconcerned at first but became highly vigilant when they sniffed the danger posed by the powerful British Empire, who continuously encroached into the region. The tension between the Natives and the British reached a peak, especially after the arrogant claim General Amherst had made to “‘render Indians into defeated subjects rather than allies,”’ by stating that: “‘it is not my intention ever to attempt to gain the friendship of Indians by presents”’ [Furstenberg, P 651]. Afraid of losing the land while being made slaves, Indians launched the Pontiac’s War. So basically, Britain’s voracious actions to enlarge its territory by acquiring the Trans-Appalachian West provoked the Pontiac’s War. Clearly, if Britain had controlled and restricted its desire to only “Expelling French out of its hegemony” and no more harassment to Indians lands after the Seven Years’ War, Indians would have kept their neutral position and indifferent attitude, because even though it was their long-established ally that were defeated, Indians themselves remained undefeatedable and more importantly, ‘the territorial cessions being drawn on maps in Paris bore little connection to realities in the trans-Appalachian West’ [Furstenberg, P 651]. After all, all the alliances were in fact based on mutual interest: France wanted trade profits while Indians needed military support; if Indian’s interests were not affected, why should they care? However, once the British Empire crossed the tolerance line forof the Indians – the sovereignty over Trans-Appalachian West – Indians would have no choice but fight for their domicile and hence, Pontiac’s War began.

Pontiac’s War’s success in restoring some autonomy for the Native