In 1755 a campaign was organized, the fourth division of which was to proceed against Crown Point. This effort was entrusted to General William Johnson, with a force of 2,850 men. To oppose him the French sent General Dieskau with 3,000 men to Crown Point. At Lake George Johnson was met by the French, and though he defeated them and took their commander prisoner, he made no attempt on the objective point.
In the following year (1756) the French began fortifications at Ticonderoga, and Crown Point became of secondary importance. All through the war one of the principal objects of the British was an effective descent on Canada, and hence each year an expedition was set on foot to proceed with a large force through Lake Champlain. Disgraceful failure attended them all, however, until the expedition under General Amherst in 1759. In 1758 more efficiency was given to the war by the appointment of William Pitt to the ministry of England. General Abercrombie was that year appointed to command the expedition against the French forts on Lake Champlain, and prosecuted the enterprise with much more vigor than his predecessors. He advanced as far as Ticonderoga and made a violent assault on the fort, but meeting with utter defeat at the hands of the brave Montcalm, he retreated with heavy loss. In 1759 General Amherst, commander-in-chief of the British forces in America, took command of an expedition, reached Ticonderoga and without much opposition captured the fort on the 27th of July. Before he reached Crown Point the French garrison had burned their forts on both sides of the lake and abandoned them. This victory was followed, two months later, by the capture of Quebec, and England at once began the erection of those stupendous fortifications on Crown Point described on a previous page.