King George’s War (1744-48)
The War of Jenkins’ Ear spread through the Caribbean and also led to conflict between Spanish Florida and British Georgia. Britain had been drawn in to the War of the Austrian Succession as an ally of Austria and in 1744 France formally declared war on Great Britain.
This prompted a third phase of the ‘French and Indian Wars’ that became known as King George’s War or the third Intercolonial War in North America. It was focused in the top north-east of the continent around New York, Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Nova Scotia.
France wished to maintain its overland supply routes to Quebec. The French and several Indian tribes, Mi’kmaq and Maliseet, assaulted Fort Anne in the then Nova Scotia capital of Annapolis Royal. They failed in their attacks when the fort was resupplied from Fort Massachusetts.
British forces then besieged and six weeks later took the French fortress of Louisburg in Nova Scotia. France launched an expedition from Europe to retake the fortress, but hit by storms and disease which took their leader the Duc d’Anville, it lost focus and returned unsuccessfully to France.
There were a series of skirmishes along the border between the British settlements and New France (Canada) which were inconclusive. However the French with their Indian allies did take Saratoga and attacked Schenectady in northern New York.
It was ended (or paused?) by the 1748 Treaty of Aix-la-Chapelle which handed Louisburg back to France, reset all the borders back to their previous positions. But significantly the French handed back Madras in India to Great Britain as part of the settlement (see below).
Six years later the fourth Intercolonial War flared in the region and became linked with the Seven Years’ War in Europe.