Most people do not realize the importance of the French and Indian War on the life of George Washington and the impact on America’s history.
Imagine…No War of Independence, No First President or No United States of America. It almost happened.
During the early years of the French and Indian War, George Washington was a young, ambitious officer in the Virginia Militia. He lead bravely, fought hard and was a strong individual. This was all noticed by the British officers who rarely held the American colonists in any regard.
Washington’s dream was to gain an officer’s commission in the British Army and if fate did not intercede history would have taken a different course.
The British knew of his ambitions and appointed him as an aide to Major-General Braddock. Well liked and respected by Braddock, Washington did little to hide his dream.
In so many ways the disaster at the battle of Monongahela in 1755 and the death of Braddock, set the wheels in motion for Washington to agree to lead a raw, undisciplined band of men against the same British army nearly twenty years later.
It was well known that Washington was to gain a Major’s commission in the victorious British army. It never happened and died with Braddock as the defeated army struggled back towards Fort Cumberland. Frustrated by the treatment he recieved from the several newly appointed officers, Washington eventually retired from the militia and returned home. His dream was over and he had no other reason to fight.
The war had ended by 1763 and the French threat was over, along with an Indian uprising. The confident colonials had no use for the British and once it was decided to tax them, for the debt accumulated during the war, they decided to fight back.
The people needed a leader and once he agreed, Washington took control of the colonial army and eventually defeated the British and pushed them out of America.
It is fascinating to think what America would be like if Washington did indeed become an officer in the British army….maybe the headlines would have read: “Washington accepts the surrender of the defeated colonial troops. England’s King once more reigns over his America.”