George Washington was promoted to lieutenant colonel by Governer Dinwiddie in 1754 with orders to attack the French fort Fort Duquesne. Washington was inexperienced in battle and inevitably blew his assignment. While marching towards Fort Duquesne, Washington and his men came upon a French reconnaissance party. Washington attacked with victory and fled the area to prepare for the French retaliation.
Washington ordered his men to construct a fort as a meager means of defense from attack. This fort would be called Fort Necessity. Fort Necessity was poorly constructed and located in a terrible position. The surrounding forest made it possible for the French and Indian attackers to approach the fort without being seen. Washington and his men were forced to surrender.
The French captured Washington and his men and forced Washington to sign an admission of attack. In this admission, which was written in French, Washington unknowingly admitted to assassinating the leader of the reconnaissance party. Although Washington could not read French, he signed the documents. All educated and sophisticated men could read French, and for Washington to admit to not being able to read French would be degrading to himself.
The French let Washington and his men march out after the admission was signed. Washington returned to Virginia a hero and, while undeclared, the colonies knew that war had begun. This war would become known as the French and Indian War.
In 1755 Britain sent General Edward Braddock to defend the colonies and capture Fort Duquesne. Braddock appointed Washington as second in command of his British troops. With over 1400 troops, Braddock marched against Fort Duquesne, only to be ambushed by a party of French and Indian soldiers totaling a mere fraction of his troops. Braddock was killed in combat along with 900 of his troops, leaving Washington in charge and responsible for marching the men...