On 30 May 1758, a fleet of 41 British ships led by Admiral Edward Boscawen departed from Halifax carrying 13,000 British soldiers. General Jeffrey Amherst commanded the troops. The French garrison sighted the fleet off the coast near Louisbourg on 1 June. Because of the high surf, the British did not attempt to land the troops until 8 June 1758.

Brigadier-General James Wolfe led the landing party in the face of determined resistance from French regulars and militia units. By the end of the day, Wolfe had established a defensive perimeter on the beach, and British troops swarmed ashore. The French troops and militia retreated to the safety of the fortress at Louisbourg.

General Amherst quickly deployed his artillery, and shells began to rain down on Louisbourg. The British also stormed the Royal Battery, a fortified artillery position outside the main walls of Louisbourg. The British turned the French cannon on the fortress, adding to the formidable bombardment from their artillery batteries.

After seven weeks of relentless shelling, Augustin de Drucourt, the Governor of Louisbourg, surrendered the fortress to the British on 27 July 1758.

With the fall of Louisbourg, the British gained control of the major sea route to the St. Lawrence River. The following year, they would launch an attack upon the centre of New France, the citadel of Quebec.


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