The Second Timeline to the Left and Straight On Till Morning

A reader with the soporific yet Hindenburgian name of Dirigible Trance writes the following in reference to a proposal to undo the American Revolution:

“Well, they would have let us go anyway, just a hundred years later like Canada or New Zealand or Australia. I don’t think that not-revolting would make alot of difference in the long run.

I like the idea of the Old West era happening but with everyone having British accents, though. Epic.”

We should consult someone like Harry Turtledove about what the likely alternative history is, but allow me to make this guess:

— without the American Revolution, the policy of the British Crown forbids westward expansion into the Indian controlled wilderness (this was one of the colonial grievances that gets less airplay than things like taxation without representation). After the French Revolution, Napoleon does not sell the Louisiana Purchase to the British Empire: instead the Napoleonic Wars spread to the New World, and the lands West of the Appalachian mountains, the Mississippi to Ohio, are all French-Speaking. Texas to California is settled by the Spanish Empire. Slavery in the Southern Colonies is abolished by the Lord Mansfield decision and other Victorian reforms, without a shot being fired.

American industry and trade is hindered for an additional century, and Henry Ford, Carnegie, Rockfeller and so on never become famous industrialists, because they lack pedigrees, and friends at court. The colonies of the eastern seaboard never develop a common culture, despite their common language, and their trade and industry remains on the same level as other British Colonies, such as Australia and South Africa.

There are no cowboys in that timeline. There are gauchos, and cavaliers, perhaps, but not English-speaking cowpokes in the great deserts of the West.