Invasion Of Canada

The Invasion of Canada in 1775 was the first major military initiative by the newly-formed Continental Army during the American Revolutionary War.

The objective of the campaign was to gain military control of the British Province of Quebec, and convince the French-speaking Canadiens to join the revolution on the side of the Thirteen Colonies. One expedition left Fort Ticonderoga under Richard Montgomery, besieged and captured Fort St. Johns, and very nearly captured British General Guy Carleton when taking Montreal. The other expedition left Cambridge, Massachusetts under Benedict Arnold, and traveled with great difficulty through the wilderness of Maine to Quebec City. The two forces joined there, but were defeated at the Battle of Quebec in December 1775.

Three weeks after the siege of Boston began, a troop of militia volunteers led by Ethan Allen and Benedict Arnold captured Fort Ticonderoga, a strategically important point on Lake Champlain between New York and the Province of Quebec. After that action they also raided Fort St. John's, not far from Montreal, which alarmed the population and the authorities there. In response, Quebec's governor Guy Carleton began fortifying St. John's, and opened negotiations with the Iroquois and other Indian tribes for their support. These actions, combined with lobbying by both Allen and Arnold and the fear of a British attack from the north, eventually convinced the Congress to authorize an invasion of Quebec, with the goal of driving the British military from that province. (Quebec was at that time frequently referred to as Canada, as most of its territory included the former French Province of Canada.)