laws which they declare to be very considerable when they put to comparison with ours, which they say leave them exposed to the vexation of covetous Commandants, who they tell have an unlimited power on their persons and ef- fects. 7
Nevertheless, there was a dialog of some sort between British officers and the French. For instance, Major Farmar had a public notice in English and French posted to say that he would sign coupons of five livres each for the sol- diers to use as payment and also that no liquor could be sold except to officers.8 He ordered the replacement of the records of the general registrar which had been lost, a positive measure. But he also renamed the village of Nouvelle Char- tres as "Cavendish," in an attempt to anglicize some aspects of the area, a deci- sion which must have flown in the face of the French. We have a letter from the business agent of the first English trading firm of importance to be represented in Illinois - Baynton, Wharton and Morgan - which mentioned a social event he attended on Sunday, April 6 1766, at the Fort: "This evening went to a Ball given by a gentleman of the Army to the French Inhabitants who made a very droll appearance; it seems this is the only way of diversion among the French."9 Its author did not elaborate on the "droll appearance" and leaves us with all sorts of possible explanations. More serious negative feelings toward the French ap- pear in the correspondance of the garrison with headquarters. It is Major Farmar who wrote about the same period in regard to the continuous lack of adequate supplies: "The soil of this country is in general very good and fertil...but the pre- sent Inhabitants are and always have been too indolent and lazy to bestow any pains upon cultivating their lands...."l0 And still during the same period, Lieuten- ant Fraser gave similar views:
The Illinois Indians are about 600 able to bear arms; noth- ing can equal their passion for drunkeness but that of the French Inhabitants, who are for the greatest part drunk every day while they can get drink to buy in the colony, they import more of this article from New Orleans than they do of any other and never fail to meet a speedy and good market of it. 11
Fraser added that they were all transported convicts, whose essential traits were cruelty and dishonesty. They were, however, extravagant in their display of friendship, "affecting the greatest hospitality," which meant only to be deceiv- ing, and "When our traders arrive from Fort Pitt they can undersell those goods of the French by at least twenty-five percent."
Hardly more than six months had passed since the arrival of the British troops and the pattern of mutual distrust had now solidified into well-rounded prejudicial attitudes. The French expected the worst from the British troops and