From Ohio History Central
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Leading European powers during the mid-18th century were conflicting against one another for control of land and dominance. These tensions developed into a confrontation between various countries known as The Seven Years War that pitted France, Austria, Sweden, Russia, and Saxony against Prussia, Hanover, and Great Britain. Conflicts were not just isolated to European boundaries but were on a global scale with hostilities expanding into territories surrounding India and North America. The struggle occurring within the colonies centered Great Britain against France known as the French and Indian War. North American territory was dominated by the British on the eastern coast, the French down in Louisiana up through Canada following the Mississippi Valley, and the Spanish in Florida. Each European power was vying for dominance within North America and all were aiming to claim the most land possible. Due to Spain’s miniscule settlement the main conflict for supremacy came between Great Britain and France. There were no clear dividing lines that separated New France from the British colonies so constant disagreements arose about who could claim what land. Specifically, regions around the Ohio Valley into the Ohio River and up near the Great Lakes produced the largest controversy. France, who first discovered the Ohio country, claimed control because they had not only settled into that area first but also established trading centers to ensure a lasting hold on the region. Great Britain demanded ownership because the land grants issued by the monarchy allotted the colonies with claim to all areas expanding from the east coast to the not yet settled west coast. Since there was no specific divider as well as an undetermined ownership of bordering territories, British colonists, unhappy with the overcrowding occurring on the East coast, expanded their settlements into "French" lands, taking over already established areas for their own specific use. The French and many Native American tribes were frustrated with these imperialistic actions of the British.