Gage, General Thomas. Papers and Correspondence, 1759-1778 | Illinois History and Lincoln Collections
This collection contains transcripts and photocopies of selected papers and correspondence of General Thomas Gage, a British military officer in North America in the mid-18th century. The materials, which were copied from multiple institutions, deal primarily with military administration and campaigning during the Seven Years' War and Pontiac's Rebellion.
General Thomas Gage (1721?-1787) first came to North America from Great Britain in 1754 to serve in the Seven Years' War. During that conflict, he served in campaigns in the Ohio River Valley, New York, and Quebec. After the war ended in 1763, Gage succeeded Jeffery Amherst as commander-in-chief of British forces in North America. As commander-in-chief, he oversaw Pontiac's Rebellion, in which Native American groups from the Great Lakes regions, including Illinois Country, rose up against British occupation. Gage also handled the response of British forces at the beginning of the Revolutionary War. He returned to Britain in 1775, and remained there until his death in 1787.
The bulk of the collection is comprised of Photostats of selected entries from Gage's letterbooks found in the Thomas Gage Papers at the William L. Clements Library at the University of Michigan. These letters feature Gage's correspondence with civil and military personnel in North America during the later years of the Seven Years' War (1754-1763) and Pontiac's Rebellion (1763-1764), as well as during his tenure as military governor of Montreal (1760-1763). Other materials from the Clements Library include copies of account books and ledgers, writings concerning the Illinois Country, and additional correspondence. Topics covered in the materials include military administration, British occupation of Illinois, negotiations with Native Americans, and settlement of the American frontier.
The collection also contains selected transcriptions of letters found in collections from other institutions, including Harvard University, the New York Public Library, the Massachusetts Historical Society, Randolph-Macon College, the Library of Virginia, and the British Museum. These letters collectively date from 1764 to 1775 and discuss Pontiac's Rebellion and matters in the Illinois Country.
This collection was compiled by the Illinois Historical Survey, a predecessor of the Illinois History and Lincoln Collections, beginning in 1941.
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