Importance of the Ohio Valley for the American colonies [book]
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Importance of the Ohio Valley for the American colonies [book]
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If two strong colonies of English were settled between Ohio and Lake Erie, in the places hereafter to be mentioned, these advantages might be expected:
  1. They would be a great security to the frontiers of our other colonies; by preventing the incursions of the French and French Indians of Canada, on the back parts of Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia, and the Carolinas, and the frontiers of such new colonies would be much more easily defended, than those of the colonies last mentioned now can be, as will appear hereafter.

  2. The dreaded junction of the French settlements in Canada, with those of Louisiana would be prevented.

  3. In case of war, it would be easy, from those new colonies, to annoy Louisiana by going down the Ohio and Mississippi; and the southern part of Canada by sailing over the lakes, and thereby confine the French within narrower limits.
Benjamin Franklin, A Plan for Settling Two Western Colonies, 1779