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Michigan CHAPTER Nine

Final Success of the English

Not so happy in its results was the expedition against Fort Ticonderoga. This was led by Lord Abercrombie and Lord Howe, and to them was assigned a force of fifteen thousand men, of whom over six thousand were regulars and about nine thousand provincials. Abercrombie was a sort of political figure-head and a merely nominal commander: "A heavy man, " wrote Wolfe in a letter to his father, "an aged gentleman, infirm in body and mind. " Brigadier Lord Howe was the real chief. Montcalm was in command at Ticonderoga, but his force was scarcely a tithe of that of the English. Vaudreuil, the governor, had planned a diversion for the English. He proposed to send Levis with one thousand six hundred regulars and as many Indians into the Valley of the Mohawk, there to attack the English forts and threaten Schenectady. He argued that this move would attach the Five Nations to the French cause and compel the English to give up their designs against Ticonderoga and defend themselves far to the southward. This scheme came to nothing, but in the meantime no reinforcements were sent to Montcalm and he was forced to defend himself as best he could. The army of Abercrombie and Howe was assembled at the head of Lake George, whence they embarked early in July for an assault upon the strongly fortified position near the foot of the lake. Montcalm was inclined to abandon Ticonderoga and fall back upon Grown Point, but realizing that he was in no better position in the one place than in the other, he determined to stand his ground. The English army reached the foot of the lake on the morning of the 6th. The French pickets immediately withdrew, burning the two bridges over the river which forms the outlet of Lake George. The invading force was therefore compelled to follow the considerable bend of the river, leaving behind its artillery, heavy baggage and provisions.

Michigan


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