Fort Ticonderoga - The Gibraltar of Colonial North America, Savior of Canada & USA
- United States
More informationFort Ticonderoga was the key to the North American continent in the mid to late 18th Century. Fort Ti, as it was known, sat on the only inland North South route between Quebec & what is now known as Canada and Eastern Continental North America, now known as the United States. Land routes were highly unstable, subject to ambush, and loss of life and materials, so this waterway was vital to any travel between what is now known as Quebec and Canada and now the Eastern United States to the South
The Fort is situated on South Lake Champlain just before the 3.5 mile portage over to Lake George and on down to the Hudson River and New York City. The French built Fort Ticonderoga, or Fort Carillon as it was named by its French builders, between 1754 and 1757.
The first major battle occurred just one year after the Fort was completed. Due to the skillful Vauban design, and Marquis de Lotbiniere's construction, 4,000 French defenders led by General Louis-Joseph de Montcalm held off an attack by 16,000 British troops. This was a major victory and would turn out to be Montcalm's greatest performance.
Montcalm became most famous for being the commander of the French and Canadian forces in the Seven Year's War between the British and French in Europe and North America (1754-1763). As the famous Colonial historian Bernard Bailyn said, "The French and Indian War as the Seven Years War was called in the United States was the turning point that led the British to dominate North America and the French to gradually disappear from importance on the continent, culminating in the Louisiana Purchase in 1803."
The British recaptured the Fort a year after the first major battle due to the French removing too many troops to adequately defend it. Ethan Allen and the Green Mountain boys, with the help of General Benedict Arnold, before he became a traitor, took the Fort back from the British in 1775.
General John Burgoyne took the Fort in 1777. Burgoyne used Mount Defiance above the Fort to threaten the Americans in the Fort. This led th