Pepperrell, Sir William

Pepperrell, Sir William,

1696–1759, American colonial military commander, b. Kittery Point, Maine (then part of Massachusetts). A wealthy merchant, landowner, and businessman, he became a colonel in the colonial militia, was a delegate to the Massachusetts General Court and a member of the governor's council, and was appointed chief justice in 1730. In 1745, in King George's War (see French and Indian WarsFrench and Indian Wars,
1689–1763, the name given by American historians to the North American colonial wars between Great Britain and France in the late 17th and the 18th cent.
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), he commanded the land forces that, with a British fleet under Sir Peter Warren, captured the French fortress LouisburgLouisburg
, town (1991 pop. 1,261), E Cape Breton Island, N.S., Canada. The town, an ice-free port, is near the site of the great fortress of Louisbourg, built (1720–40) by France as its Gibraltar in America.
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, on Cape Breton, Canada. In recognition of this service, he was the first Native American to be created baronet (1746). Sir William also commanded a regiment in the last of the French and Indian Wars, and as president of the council he briefly governed (1756–57) Massachusetts. His journal of the Louisburg expedition was published by the American Antiquarian Society in its Proceedings, Vol. XX (1911).


See J. F. Sprague, Three Men from Maine (1924); study by B. Fairchild (1954).

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Pepperrell, Sir William

(1696–1759) colonial leader; born in Kittery, Maine. He was a successful merchant, a chief justice, and an amateur soldier. Following the Yankee capture of Fort Louisbourg under his leadership, Pepperrell was made a baronet.
The Cambridge Dictionary of American Biography, by John S. Bowman. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1995. Reproduced with permission.