Military history

Crucible of War: The Seven Years' War and the Fate of Empire in British North America, 1754-1766

Crucible of War: The Seven Years' War and the Fate of Empire in British North America, 1754-1766

The time is 1933, the place, Berlin, when William E. Dodd becomes America's first ambassador to Hitler's Germany in a year that proved to be a turning point in history.

A mild-mannered professor from Chicago, Dodd brings along his wife, son, and flamboyant daughter, Martha. At first Martha is entranced by the parties and pomp, and the handsome young men of the Third Reich with their infectious enthusiasm for restoring Germany to a position of world prominence. Enamored of the New Germany, she has one affair after another, including with the surprisingly honorable first chief of the Gestapo, Rudolf Diels. But as evidence of Jewish persecution mounts, confirmed by chilling first-person testimony, her father telegraphs his concerns to a largely indifferent State Department back home. Dodd watches with alarm as Jews are attacked, the press is censored, and drafts of frightening new laws begin to circulate. As that first year unfolds and the shadows deepen, the Dodds experience days full of excitement, intrigue, romance and ultimately, horror, when a climactic spasm of violence and murder reveals Hitler's true character and ruthless ambition.

INTRODUCTION - THE SEVEN YEARS’, WAR AND THE DISRUPTION OF THE OLD BRITISH EMPIRE

PROLOGUE - JUMONVILLE’S GLEN

Part One: THE ORIGINS OF THE SEVEN YEARS’ WAR - 1450-1754

Chapter 1: Iroquoia and Empire - 1450-1735

Chapter 2: The Erosion of Iroquois Influence - 1736-1754

Chapter 3: London Moves to Counter a Threat - 1753

Chapter 4: Washington Steps onto the Stage . . . - 1753-1754

Chapter 5: . . . And Stumbles - 1754

Chapter 6: Escalation - 1754

Part Two: DEFEAT - 1754-1755

Chapter 7: The Albany Congress and Colonial Disunion - 1754

Chapter 8: General Braddock Takes Command - 1755

Chapter 9: Disaster on the Monongahela - 1755

Chapter 10: After Braddock WILLIAM SHIRLEY AND THE NORTHERN CAMPAIGNS - 1755

Chapter 11: British Politics, and a Revolution in European Diplomacy - 1755

Part Three: NADIR - 1756-1757

Chapter 12: Lord Loudoun Takes Command - 1756

Chapter 13: Oswego - 1756

Chapter 14: The State of the Central Colonies - 1756

Chapter 15: The Strains of Empire CAUSES OF ANGLO-AMERICAN FRICTION - 1756

Chapter 16: Britain Drifts into a European War - 1756

Chapter 17: The Fortunes of War in Europe - 1757

Chapter 18: Loudoun’s Offensive - 1757

Chapter 19: Fort William Henry - 1757

Chapter 20: Other Disasters, and a Ray of Hope - 1757

Chapter 21: Pitt Changes Course - DECEMBER 1757

Part Four: TURNING POINT - 1758

Chapter 22: Deadlock, and a New Beginning - JANUARY-MAY 1758

Chapter 23: Old Strategies, New Men, and a Shift in the Balance - EARLY 1758

Chapter 24: Montcalm Raises a Cross THE BATTLE OF TICONDEROGA - JULY 1758

Chapter 25: Amherst at Louisbourg - JUNE-JULY 1758

Chapter 26: Supply Holds the Key - 1758

Chapter 27: Bradstreet at Fort Frontenac - JULY-AUGUST 1758

Chapter 28: Indian Diplomacy and the Fall of Fort Duquesne - AUTUMN 1758

Chapter 29: Educations in Arms - 1754-1758

Part Five: ANNUS MIRABILIS - 1759

Chapter 30: Success, Anxiety, and Power THE ASCENT OF WILLIAM PITT - LATE 1758

Chapter 31: Ministerial Uncertainties - 1759

Chapter 32: Surfeit of Enthusiasm, Shortage of Resources - 1759

Chapter 33: Emblem of Empire FORT PITT AND THE INDIANS - 1759

Chapter 34: The Six Nations Join the Fight THE SIEGE OF NIAGARA - JULY 1759

Chapter 35: General Amherst Hesitates TICONDEROGA AND CROWN POINT - JULY-AUGUST 1759

Chapter 36: Dubious Battle WOLFE MEETS MONTCALM AT QUÉBEC - JUNE-SEPTEMBER 1759

Chapter 37: Fall’s Frustrations - OCTOBER-NOVEMBER 1759

Chapter 38: Celebrations of Empire, Expectations of the Millennium - OCTOBER 1759

Chapter 39: Day of Decision QUIBERON BAY - NOVEMBER 20, 1759

Part Six: CONQUEST COMPLETED - 1760

Chapter 40: War in Full Career - 1760

Chapter 41: The Insufficiency of Valor LÉVIS AND VAUQUELIN AT QUÉBEC - APRIL-MAY 1760

Chapter 42: Murray Ascends the St. Lawrence - JULY-AUGUST 1760

Chapter 43: Conquest Completed VAUDREUIL SURRENDERS AT MONTRÉAL - AUGUST 1760

Chapter 44: The Causes of Victory and the Experience of Empire - 1758-1760

Chapter 45: Pitt Confronts an Unexpected Challenge - OCTOBER 1760

Chapter 46: VICTORY RECOLLECTED - Scenographia Americana

Part Seven: VEXED VICTORY - 1761-1763

Chapter 47: The Fruits of Victory and the Seeds of Disintegration - 1761-1763

Chapter 48: The Cherokee War and Amherst’s Reforms in Indian Policy - 1760-1761

Chapter 49: Amherst’s Dilemma - 1761

Chapter 50: Pitt’s Problems - 1761

Chapter 51: The End of an Alliance - 1762

Chapter 52: The Intersections of Empire, Trade, and War HAVANA - AUGUST 1762

Chapter 53: Peace - SEPTEMBER 1762-APRIL 1763

Chapter 54: The Rise of Wilkes, the Fall of Bute, and the Unheeded Lesson of Manila - SPRING 1763

Chapter 54: Anglo-America at War’s End THE FRAGILITY OF EMPIRE - 1761-1763

Chapter 55: Yankees Invade Wyoming— and Pay the Price - SPRING 1763

Chapter 56: Amherst’s Reforms and Pontiac’s War - 1763

Chapter 57: Amherst’s Recall - AUTUMN 1763

Part Eight: CRISIS AND REFORM - 1764

Chapter 58: Death Reshuffles a Ministry - 1763

Chapter 59: An Urgent Search for Order GRENVILLE AND HALIFAX CONFRONT THE NEED FOR REVENUE AND CONTROL - SUMMER-AUTUMN 1763

Chapter 60: The American Duties Act (THE SUGAR ACT) - 1764

Chapter 61: The Currency Act - 1764

Chapter 62: Postwar Conditions and the Context of Colonial Response - 1764

Chapter 63: An Ambiguous Response to Imperial Initiatives - 1764

Chapter 64: Pontiac’s Progress - 1764-1765

Chapter 65: The Lessons of Pontiac’s War - 1764-1769

Part Nine: CRISIS COMPOUNDED - 1765-1766

Chapter 66: Stamp Act and Quartering Act - WINTER-SPRING 1765

Chapter 67: Grenville’s End - MAY-JULY 1765

Chapter 68: The Assemblies Vacillate - SUMMER 1765

Chapter 69: Mobs Respond - SUMMER 1765

Chapter 70: Nullification by Violence, and an Elite Effort to Reassert Control - OCTOBER-NOVEMBER 1765

Part Ten: EMPIRE PRESERVED? - 1766

Chapter 71: The Repeal of the Stamp Act - JANUARY-MARCH 1766

Chapter 72: The Hollowness of Empire - 1766

Chapter 73: Acrimonious Postlude THE COLONIES AFTER REPEAL - 1766

Chapter 74: The Future of Empire - 1766-1767

Notes