Lt. Colonel Clark set out with about 200 men from Virginia and arrived at Kaskaskia (Illinois) on the 4th of July. The local French militia leader at Fort Gage, the Chevalier Phillippe de Rocheblave, was caught by surprise and Fort Gage was captured without firing a shot. When the French learned that an Alliance with France had been signed in June, 1778, and that France had declared war on Great Britain, they were elated. This was a British victory.