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moustic
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Vaudreuil

Tue Dec 26, 2006 5:21 pm

http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/15311a.htm

Pierre, Marquis de Vaudreuil-Cavagnal
Second governor of that name and the last under the French rule, fifth son of the former governor, b. at Quebec, 22 Nv., 1698; d. in France about 1767. He successively ranked as major of the troops (1726), Knight of St. Louis (1730), Governor of Three-Rivers (1733), of Louisiana (1742), Governor-General of Canada (1755) during the period of the Seven Years War. To his demand of reinforcements, France responded by sending Montcalm, Lévis, Bourlamaque, Bougainville, who, though unable to save New France, covered her with glory. The merit of the victories, Oswego, William-Henry, Carillon, has heretofore been too largely attributed to Vaudreuil, who never appeared in battle and merely issued orders that were often a hindrance instead of a help to the experienced and clear-sighted commander-in-chief, thereby rendering his exploits doubly heroic. Vaudreuil even tried in his correspondence to belittle Montcalm's merit, and was too easily influenced by Bigot and his unscrupulous clique who dilapidated the public treasure to the detriment of the army and of the nation. This apparently rigorous judgment is supported by the latest historical researches. After the fatal battle of the Plains of Abraham, Vaudreuil withdrew to Montreal; when, despite the victory of Lévis over Murray at St. Foy (1760), the French lost all hope, he signed the capitulation of Canada, and retired to France.

Louis Philippe de Rigaud, Comte de Vaudreuil
Eldest son of preceding, b. at Quebec, 1723; d. in France, 1802; entered the navy in 1741. When the American revolutionary war began he refused the governorship of San Domingo to remain at sea. He commanded the Fendant at the conquest of Grenada by d'Estaing, captured 6 million livres of booty in his cruises, conquered Senegal (1779), took part in five other engagements, one of which, off the Chesapeake, resulted in the surrender of Cornwallis. At the disaster of Dominica he saved 12 ships and retreated successfully. Louis XVI thanked him personally and gave him the Grand Cross of St. Louis (1789). During the French Revolution he was elected to the States General; he defended the Tuileries (1792), and emigrated, returning to France under the Consulate.
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WallysWorld
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Fri Jan 12, 2007 3:01 am

I think I disagree with the comments about Vaudreuil-Cavagnal in the defense of New France.

After taking a university course on Canadian history until 1867 and reading a book about the Seven Years' War, I think the 'hit and run' strategy that Vaudreuil-Cavagnal wanted to undertake was the better strategy than the European style warfare that Montcalm endorsed. Vaudreuil-Cavagnal also wanted to make more use of the Canadien militia and natives for which he had excellent relations with. My opinion is that Montcalm made poor use of the militia and the native forces that were under Vaudreuil-Cavagnal.

Vaudreuil-Cavagnal's strategy may not have won the war for the French in North America, but it may have worn down the British enough with attrition that a treaty could have been reached saving New France. Once Montcalm turned the war in North America into a showdown of forces, it was only a matter of time until the British won a decisive victory like they did on the Plains of Abraham.

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moustic
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Fri Jan 12, 2007 9:10 am

I agree with your analysis.
Canadian qualities, under were exploited.
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WallysWorld
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Tue Jan 16, 2007 3:57 am

I remember a documentary series on TLC (here in North America) called "Battles that Changed the World) and the Battle on the Plains of Abraham was selected as it ensured English dominance over North America.

Interesting why Montcalm decided to attack the British outside of Quebec's walls when he could have just remained behind the very strong fortifications until the approaching winter caused Wolfe to withdraw. Or Montcalm should have waited at least until the reinforcements from Montreal and Trois-Rivieres arrived and caught Wolfe in a princer.

Unfortunately Montcalm's aggressiveness backfired on him that day.

abner
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Tue Jan 16, 2007 6:47 am

My theory is Montcalm didn't believe in the resistance of Montreal fortress Walls could resist to a long siege . He prefered fight directly the Wolf army than wait and see in the fortress . Don't forget than Louisbourg , a fortress who was impossible to take , fall quickly in english hands .Montcalm tought that will be the same to Quebec . The error was to attack directly without coordination between regulars and irregulars . Everybody know the rest of story .

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WallysWorld
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Tue Jan 16, 2007 3:07 pm

Actually fortress Louisberg was not as well fortified as some people thought or think. I have a book about the fortress and it states that the walls of Louisberg were not as strong as they looked due to the location of the fortress. With the sea spray and the overall dampness of the area, the walls were always crumbling and being repaired and that the cement between that held the walls was not as strong as it should have been. In other words, almost paper walls.

But back to Quebec, word was sent to Montreal about Wolfe's approach, Montcalm should have waited in Quebec until the reinforcements had arrived and then he would have outnumbered the British. Meanwhile, he could have used the natives to harass the British outside Quebec. But again, that supposes the Montcalm used the natives effectively which he didn't.

I still think that given a different strategy New France could have been saved by using hit and run tactics like Vaudreuil endorsed to wear down the British.

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