[FRENCH AND INDIAN WAR. Dropped-head title: Suppléement à la Gazette du 15 Octobre 1757. Relation de la prise du Fort Georges, ou Guillaume-Henry, situé sur le Lac Saint-Sacrement, & de ce qui s'est passé cette année en Canada. [Colophon: A Paris, du Bureau d'Adresse, aux Galleries du Louvre, 18 Octobre 1757.
4o, 4pp., printed in two columns, paginated 173-176, heading at top of first page, colophon at end of last column on page 4. UNBOUND, in very fine original condition, the sheet with deckle edges preserved.
THE FRENCH ANNOUNCEMENT OF MONTCALM'S CONTROVERSIAL VICTORY OVER THE BRITISH AT FORT WILLIAM HENRY
A very rare supplement or extra of the Gazette de France, apparently issued immediately after the arrival of reports of Montcalm's capture of the Fort William Henry, the key British fort on Lake George. In March 1757 Montcalm had ordered Rigaud de Vaudreil to capture this crucial outpost, and the English garrison was besieged. The English held out in spite of heavy French artillery, repulsing four attacks before finally surrendering, under formal European military terms, on 9 August 1757. Those equitable terms of capitulation, though, meant little to the nearly 2000 Indians warriors allied with the French, and once the English had quit the security of their stockade, the Indians exacted a terrible revenge against soldiers and civilians alike, tomahawking some 185 men, women and children and capturing another 300 to 500 before Montcalm's troops could intervene. The text gives a full, very detailed account of the various stages of the siege and subsidiary actions, reprints the surrender terms and briefly notes the "massacre" that ensued. "In the end the violent sequel to Montcalm's victory would both defeat Vaudreuil's best efforts to salvage Indian relations and realize Montcalm's worst fears of British vengeance." Truly, "the fall of Fort William Henry thus marked a critial juncture in the war..." (Anderson, Crucible of War, pp.198-199).
RARE. This supplement, dated 15 October, evidently precedes by a few days the 6-leaf edition, though both have colophons dated 18 October, as described in Church. The 6-leaf issue, though, lacks the heading "Supplement" dated 15 October, in the Gazette issue. Church 1020 (6-leaf edition); Sabin 69272 (6-leaf) terming the Barlow copy "the only copy known"), Copies of the 6-leaf edition have been traced at Harvard, John Carter Brown and the Huntington (Barlow-Church copy). One other copy of the present 4-page "Supplement" dated 15 October is in the National Library of Canada (ex-Lande Collection).