U.S. History/Treaty of Paris 1763
I am doing an assignment for school and I have to prove that the conditions of
the treaty of Paris of the French and Indian war were FAIR. This is quite hard
since there are so many things that were UNFAIR in this treaty which included :
The Native Americans weren't even taken into consideration in the treaty after
all their contributions, Spain got land even though they weren't involved,and
France kept new Orleans even though they lost. Can you help me find counter
claims to these reasons why they are unfair. I really need help because I cant
find any evidence proving that the conditions of the treaty were fair.
I suppose "fair" is a matter of opinion and perspective. But the Treaty of Paris fairly represented military successes and control.
It is true that Native Americans were not given a voice in the treaty, but which European power claimed nominal control over Native American territory meant little to the Native Americans in their day to day lives. Neither country planned massive settlement of Native American lands. Britain prohibited its American colonists from migrating westward into Native American tribal lands, which was their primary concern. Native tribes that supported the British side were rewarded while tribes that supported the losing French side lost influence, which is to be expected in the outcome of a war.
Allowing one country (Britain) undisputed control of all this territory was actually thought to be a better outcome for the Native groups. If the territory remained in dispute, both sides would have incentive to colonize and occupy the land with their own colonists in order to solidify their control. Once the land was indisputably in control of France, the need to settle more British colonists on the land became less important and the King was able to protect land for the loyal tribes that occupied the area. It was not until after Britain lost control of these territories after the Revolution that colonization and migration began again in a major way.
Spain was involved in the war. It was an ally of France. It is commonly said that Spain Acquired the Louisiana Territory as a result of the treaty. In fact, France ceded Louisiana to Spain a year earlier in the Treaty of Fontainebleau of 1762. In the Treaty of Paris, Spain ceded Florida to Britain and received back its colonies in the Philippines and Cuba which had been seized by Britain during the war.
While France had to cede almost all of its North American territories. In exchange, France received back its colonies Guadeloupe, in Martinique, Saint Lucia, Gorée, and several trading posts in India which had been seized by Britain during the War. These territories were actually much more valuable to France than Canada, which was very lightly populated and had little to trade other than fur at the time. The climate made it of little value for farming, and with the British already in control of what is today eastern Canada, control of the western lands by France was virtually impossible anyway. In short, these lands were not valuable enough and were too remote for France to govern easily or effectively.
Overall, the Treaty recognized that the British Navy met it would control more colonial territory. Spain stayed mostly focused on its South American and Central American territories which were more vast and considered far more valuable than North America. France with a relatively small navy had to be satisfied with a number of smaller, yet valuable colonies. It may not have been happy to cede so many to Britain, but it lost the war. Absent a massive build up of a French navy and merchant marine that could challenge Britain, France could not maintain as vast an empire as Britain.
I hope this helps!