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Battle on Snowshoes

Battle on Snowshoes

Battle on Snowshoes - 13th March 1758.

In the afternoon of March 13th 1758 a small battle took place in the wilderness of north America.

The total number on both sides did not exceed 500 men. The men on the British side were primarily native born settlers from New England led by Robert Rogers and several soldiers from the 27th Regiment of Foot, the Inniskillings, and from other units, wore snowshoes as they marched through snow 4 feet deep. On the French side native born Canadians and their native Indian allies of New France led by the French partisan Langy. Rogers estimated the main body to have been 600 French and Indians, while the French report sending 200 'domiciled Indians, Iroquois and Nepissings' along with 30 French regulars.

Despite the success of an initial ambush by Rogers and his rangers, the battle was to swing the way of the numerically superior French force. The Rangers fought bravely, considering they were outnumbered and their numbers fell quickly. They made several successful attempts to prevent themselves from being flanked. But after an hour and a half of heavy fighting, their numbers were too few and they finally retreated. The Rangers lost about 125 who were killed or captured. It was to be a clear cut victory for the French and Indians and resulted in the almost total annihilation of the best of the newly formed English Rangers. Only darkness was to save Rogers and the remnants of his force.

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