George Washington and the Half-King Chief Tanacharison

An Alliance That Began the French and Indian War

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About the Book

George Washington and the Half-King Chief Tanacharison details the events in western Pennsylvania that precipitated the French and Indian War. It describes the interpersonal relationship between 22-year-old, inexperienced, but self-assured George Washington and the 54-year-old wily Iroquois Chief Tanacharison, which led to, as Horace Walpole quipped, Washington firing “a volley in the backwoods of America that set the world on fire.”
The book explores the history of the French and English rivalry for the trans–Allegheny territory and its impact on the Indians in the area. It shows how Washington and Tanacharison each sought to influence the other to gain support for their respective agendas. Washington wanted the Indians to endorse Virginia’s claim to the Ohio territory, while Tanacharison wanted a war between England and France so that the Iroquois could maintain their dominance over the Ohio Indians. The book describes in detail the sequence of events through which the crafty half-king manipulated Washington into starting the war he wanted, and by his actions implicated Washington in nothing less than a cold-blooded murder.

About the Author(s)

Paul R. Misencik, a former airline captain, is presently the Chief of the Operational Factors Division of the U.S. National Transportation Safety Board. He is a member of the First Virginia Regiment of the Continental Line living history foundation. He lives in Reston, Virginia.

Bibliographic Details

Paul R. Misencik
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 212
Bibliographic Info: 10 photos, 10 maps, notes bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2014
pISBN: 978-0-7864-7950-4
eISBN: 978-1-4766-1540-0
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Table of Contents


Preface  1

Prologue. Tuesday, May 28, 1754—Jumonville Glen  7

1. Conflicting Claims  11

2. Céloron  21

3. Opening Moves  33

4. French Forts on the Allegheny  46

5. Washington Warns the French  57

6. The Race to the Forks  80

7. The Spark Is Struck  97

8. Rationalization and Justification  116

9. The ­Half-King Gets His War  121

10. Battle at Great Meadows  139

Epilogue  151

Chapter Notes  179

Bibliography  189

Index  195