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Ap. 48.] effected their
UNITED GRATË MARUN OF CORNWALLIS-GENERAL MARION.
ziph to their bo of the infan battle of King's
was in the
goes At zened in tri- for the parse of co-operation with Cornwall t; purpose Nhug were little aware | lis, who feared to proceed far from South Car selici emort. The olina, lest it should be again in insurrection. inconsiderable as it la the mean time his lordship took past at agay turbed the tide | Winnsboruigh. It was a central position, ] Die designation of Fer-where he might cover the country from partighson and his powyn awro uncomplete check to sen incursions, obtain forage and supplies, and the expedition of Cornetükk, ¡la began to fear await the co-operation of General Leslie, for the safety of Soup Carolina, liable to such sudden reptioak tree" the mountains; lest, while he was facing to thworth, these hordes of stark-riding warriorem ght throw themselves behind him, end prodacy-a popular enrobustion in the province he dead left. He resolvejl, therefore, to return with all speed to that province and provide for its security.
Tue victory at Khog's Mounthip had sut the partisan spirit througchort dia country in a Linze. Francis Marie pas, soil in the field. He had been made a bigadier-generel by Gove ernor Rutledge, but his brigade, as it was called, was formed of neighbors and friends, and was 'continually fluctuating in nat He was nearly fifty years of age, and smell of stature, but hardy, healthy, and vigorous, Brave but not braggart, newer avoiding danger, but never rashly seeking it. Taciturn and whstemious; a strict disciplinarian: careful of the lives of his men, but little raprdful of his own life. Just in his dealings, free from every thing selfish or mercenary, and incapable of a
On the 14th of October he commenced bis retrograde and mortifying march, coriacting it in, the night, ani with such hurry and confusion, that nearly twenty vagyone, laden with bagzaze and supplies, were lost. As he propéeded, the rainy season set in the brooks and rivers became swollen, and almost impassable; | the roads deep and airy; provisious and forge scanty; the troops generally sickly, having no tents. Lord Cornwallis himself was seized with a bilious fever, which obliged him to halt two days in the Catawba settlement, and afterwards to-be conveyed in a waggon, giving up the commeauuess. He had his haunts and strongholds mand to Lord Rawdon.
in the morasses of the Pedec and Mark Piec, In the course of this desolato mereh, the | Uis men were hardy and abstemions as hinBritish suffered as usual from the vengeance of self: they ate their meat without salt, often anzoutraged country, being fired upon from subsisted on potatoes, were seantily clad, and behind trees and other coverts by the goonam-almost dotitute of Ulakete. Marion was full ry; their sentries shot down at their encamp- of rotarems and expedients. Sallying forth fnents; their foraging partics ent off The from his mornsses, he was overrun the lower "writes Lord Rawdon, edclay," are mostly districts, pass the Santer, beat up the small mounted maitis, not to be overtaken by our posts in the vicinity of Charleston, cut up the infantry, nor to be safely pursued in this communication between that city and Cauden; strong country by our cavahy.” and having struck some signal blow, so as to rouse the vengeance of the enemy, would en treat again into his feuny fastnesses. Her the British gave him the bye name si Sramp For, but those of his countrymer know his courage, his loftiness of sp spotless integrity, considered hic the of the South.
For two weeks they were falling on this retrograde inarch, through deep roads, and a country cut up by water-courses, with the very elements arrayed against them. At length, after fording the Catawba where it was six hundred yards wide, and three and a half deep, and where a handful of riflemen might have hold them a check, the amoy arrived at Tarleton, who was on daty in Winnsborough, in South Carolina. Henga, Uythe country, undertook, as ke sal order of Cornwallis, Lord Kawdon wrote on swamp, fox from bis exthe 24th of October to Brigadier-General Leg-marched caution lie, who was at that time in the Chesapeake, Waterco whs 4 with the force detached by Sir Henry Clinton in compact ortis for a descent-opon Virginia, suggesting the ex-close; he sa pedicacy of Lis advancing to North Carolina for him. Teriton
RETROGRADE MARCH OF CORNWALLIS GENERAL MARION.
effected their purpose, they returned in tri- | for the purpose of co-operation with Cornwalumph to their homes. They were little aware | lis, who feared to proceed far from South Carof the importance of their achievement. The olina, lest it should be again in insurrection. battle of King's Mountain, inconsiderable as it In the mean time his lordship took post at was in the numbers engaged, turned the tide | Winnsborough. It was a central position, of Southern warfare. The destruction of Fer- where he might cover the country from partiguson and his corps gave a complete check to san incursions, obtain forage and supplies, and the expedition of Cornwallis. He began to fear await the co-operation of General Leslie. for the safety of South Carolina, liable to such sudden irruptions from the mountains; lest, while he was facing to the north, these hordes of stark-riding warriors might throw themselves behind him, and produce a popular combustion in the province he had left. He resolved, therefore, to return with all speed to that province and provide for its security.
On the 14th of October he commenced his retrograde and mortifying march, conducting it in the night, and with such hurry and confusion, that nearly twenty waggons, laden with baggage and supplies, were lost. As he proceeded, the rainy season set in; the brooks and rivers became swollen, and almost impassable; the roads deep and miry; provisions and forage scanty; the troops generally sickly, having no tents. Lord Cornwallis himself was seized with a bilious fever, which obliged him to halt two days in the Catawba settlement, and afterwards to be conveyed in a waggon, giving up the command to Lord Rawdon.
In the course of this desolate march, the British suffered as usual from the vengeance of an outraged country, being fired upon from behind trees and other coverts by the yeomanry; their sentries shot down at their encampments; their foraging parties cut off. "The enemy," writes Lord Rawdon, are mostly mounted militia, not to be overtaken by our infantry, nor to be safely pursued in this strong country by our cavalry."
For two weeks they were toiling on this retrograde march, through deep roads, and a country cut up by water-courses, with the very elements arrayed against them. At length, after fording the Catawba where it was six hundred yards wide, and three and a half deep, and where a handful of riflemen might have held them in check, the army arrived at Winnsborough, in South Carolina. Hence, by order of Cornwallis, Lord Rawdon wrote on the 24th of October to Brigadier-General Leslie, who was at that time in the Chesapeake, with the force detached by Sir Henry Clinton for a descent upon Virginia, suggesting the expediency of his advancing to North Carolina
THE victory at King's Mountain had set the partisan spirit throughout the country in a blaze. Francis Marion was soon in the field. He had been made a brigadier-general by Governor Rutledge, but his brigade, as it was called, was formed of neighbors and friends, and was continually fluctuating in numbers. He was nearly fifty years of age, and small of stature, but hardy, healthy, and vigorous. Brave but not braggart, never avoiding danger, but never rashly seeking it. Taciturn and abstemious; a strict disciplinarian: careful of the lives of his men, but little mindful of his own life. Just in his dealings, free from every thing selfish or mercenary, and incapable of a meanness. He had his haunts and strongholds in the morasses of the Pedee and Black River. His men were hardy and abstemious as himself; they ate their meat without salt, often subsisted on potatoes, were scantily clad, and almost destitute of blankets. Marion was full of stratagems and expedients. Sallying forth from his morasses, he would overrun the lower districts, pass the Santee, beat up the small posts in the vicinity of Charleston, cut up the communication between that city and Camden; and having struck some signal blow, so as to rouse the vengeance of the enemy, would retreat again into his fenny fastnesses. Hence the British gave him the bye name of the Swamp Fox, but those of his countrymen who knew his courage, his loftiness of spirit, and spotless integrity, considered him the Bayard of the South.
Tarleton, who was on duty in that part of the country, undertook, as he said, to draw the swamp fox from his cover. He accordingly marched cautiously down the east bank of the Wateree with a body of dragoons and infantry, in compact order. The fox, however, kept close; he saw that the enemy was too strong for him. Tarleton now changed his plan. By
FIGHT AT BLACK STOCK HILL-GATES AT HILLSBOROUGH.
day he broke up his force into small detachments or patrols, giving them orders to keep near enough to each other to render mutual support if attacked, and to gather together at night. The artifice had its effect. Marion sallied forth from his covert just before daybreak to make an attack upon one of these detachments, when, to his surprise, he found himself close upon the British camp. Perceiving the snare that had been spread for him, he made a rapid retreat. A close pursuit took place. For seven hours Marion was hunted from one swamp and fastness to another; several stragglers of his band were captured, and Tarleton was in strong hope of bringing him into action, when an express came spurring from Cornwallis, calling for the immediate services of himself and his dragoons in another quarter.
Sumter was again in the field! That indefatigable partisan, having recruited a strong party in the mountainous country to which he retreated after his defeat on the Wateree, had reappeared on the west side of the Santee, repulsed a British party sent against him, killing its leader; then, crossing Broad River, had effected a junction with Colonels Clark and Brannan, and now menaced the British posts in the district of Ninety-Six.
It was to disperse this head of partisan war that Tarleton was called off from beleaguering Marion. Advancing with his accustomed celerity, he thought to surprise Sumter on the Enoree River. A deserter apprised the latter of his danger. He pushed across the river, but was hotly pursued, and his rear-guard roughly handled. He now made for the Tyger River, noted for turbulence and rapidity; once beyond this, he might disband his followers in the woods. Tarleton, to prevent his passing it unmolested, spurred forward in advance of his main body with one hundred and seventy dragoons, and eighty mounted men of the infantry. Before five o'clock (Nov. 20) his advanced guard overtook and charged the rear guard of the Americans, who retreated to the main body. Sumter finding it impossible to cross Tyger River in safety, and being informed that the enemy, thus pressing upon him, were without infantry or cannon, took post on Black Stock Hill, with a rivulet and rail fence in front, the Tyger River in the rear and on the right flank, and a large log-barn on the left. The barn was turned into a fortress, and a part of the force stationed in it to fire through the apertures between the logs.
Tarleton halted on an opposite height to await the arrival of his infantry, and part of his men dismounted to ease their horses. Sumter seized this moment for an attack. He was driven back after some sharp fighting. The enemy pursued, but were severely galled by the fire from the log barn. Enraged at seeing his men shot down, Tarleton charged with his cavalry, but found it impossible to dislodge the Americans from their rustic fortress. At the approach of night he fell back to join his infantry, leaving the ground strewed with his killed and wounded. The latter were treated with great humanity by Sumter. The loss of the Americans was only three killed and four wounded.
Sumter, who had received a severe wound in the breast, remained several hours on the field of action; but, understanding the enemy would be powerfully reinforced in the morning, he crossed the Tyger River in the night. He was then placed on a litter between two horses, and thus conducted across the country by a few faithful adherents. The rest of his little army dispersed themselves through the woods. Tarleton, finding his enemy had disappeared, claimed the credit of a victory; but those who considered the affair rightly, declared that he had received a severe check.
While the attention of the enemy was thus engaged by the enterprises of Sumter and Marion and their swamp warriors, General Gates was gathering together the scattered fragments of his army at Hillsborough. When all were collected, his whole force, exclusive of militia, did not exceed fourteen hundred men. It was, as he said, "rather a shadow than a substance." His troops, disheartened by defeat, were in a forlorn state, without clothing, without pay, and sometimes without provisions. Destitute of tents, they constructed hovels of fence-rails, poles, brush wood, and the stalks of Indian corn, the officers faring no better than the men.
The vanity of Gates was completely cut down by his late reverses. He had lost, too, the confidence of his officers, and was unable to maintain discipline among his men; who through their irregularities became a terror to the country people.
On the retreat of Cornwallis from Charlotte, Gates advanced to that place to make it his winter-quarters. Huts were ordered to be built, and a regular encampment was commenced. Smallwood, with a body of militia,
GATES'S DOMESTIC MISFORTUNES-ARRIVAL OF GREENE.
was stationed below on the Catawba to guard | sued, both with regard to General Gates and the road leading through Camden; and further the government, is to make such representadown was posted Brigadier-General Morgan, tions as may obtain a revision of the order of with a corps of light troops. Congress directing an inquiry into his conduct. In this opinion all present concurred.
To add to his depression of spirits, Gates received the melancholy intelligence of the death of an only son, and, while he was yet writhing under the blow, came official despatches informing him of his being superseded in command. A letter from Washington, we are told, accompanied them, sympathizing with him in his domestic misfortunes, adverting with peculiar delicacy to his reverses in battle, assuring him of bis undiminished confidence in his zeal and capacity, and his readiness to give him the command of the left wing of his army as soon as he could make it convenient to join him.
The effect of this letter was overpowering. Gates was found walking about his room in the greatest agitation, pressing the letter to his lips, breaking forth into ejaculations of gratitude and admiration, and when he could find utterance to his thoughts, declared that its tender sympathy and considerate delicacy had conveyed more consolation and delight to his heart than he had believed it possible ever to have felt again.*
General Greene arrived at Charlotte, on the 2d of December. On his way from the North he had made arrangements for supplies from the different States; and had left the Baron Steuben in Virginia to defend that State and procure and send on reinforcements and stores for the Southern army. On the day following his arrival, Greene took formal command. The delicacy with which he conducted himself towards his unfortunate predecessor is said to have been "edifying to the army." Consulting with his officers as to the court of inquiry on the conduct of General Gates, ordered by Congress; it was determined that there was not a sufficient number of general officers in camp to sit upon it; that the state of General Gates's feelings, in consequence of the death of his son, disqualified him from entering upon the task of his defence; and that it would be indelicate in the extreme to press on him an investigation, which his honor would not permit him to defer. Beside, added Greene, his is a case of misfortune, and the most honorable course to be pur
Related by Dr. William Reed, at that time superintendent of the Hospital department at Hillsborough, to Alexander Garden, aide-de-camp to Greene.-Garden's Anecdotes, p. 350.
Gates, in fact, when informed in the most delicate manner of the order of Congress, was urgent that a court of inquiry should be immediately convened: he acknowledged there was some important evidence that could not at present be procured; but he relied on the honor and justice of the court to make allowance for the deficiency. He was ultimately brought to acquiesce in the decision of the council of war for the postponement, but declared that he could not think of serving until the matter should have been properly investigated. He determined to pass the interim on his estate in Virginia. Greene, in a letter to Washington (December 7th), writes: "General Gates sets out to-morrow for the northward. Many officers think very favorably of his conduct, and that, whenever an inquiry takes place, he will honorably acquit himself."
The kind and considerate conduct of Greene, on the present occasion, completely subdued the heart of Gates. The coldness, if not illwill, with which he had hitherto regarded him, was at an end, and, in all his subsequent correspondence with him, he addressed him in terms of affection.
We take pleasure in noting the generous conduct of the General Assembly of Virginia towards Gates. It was in session when he arrived at Richmond. "Those fathers of the commonwealth," writes Col. H. Lee, in his Memoirs, appointed a committee of their body to wait on the vanquished general, and assure him of their high regard and esteem, that their remembrance of his former glorious services was never to be obliterated by any reverse of fortune; but, ever mindful of his great merit, they would omit no opportunity of testifying to the world the gratitude which Virginia, as a member of the American Union, owed to him in his military character."
Gates was sensibly affected and comforted by this kind reception, and retired with a lightened heart to his farm in Berkeley County.
The whole force at Charlotte, when Greene took command, did not much exceed twentythree hundred men, and more than half of them were militia. It had been broken in spirit by the recent defeat. The officers had fallen into habits of negligence; the soldiers were loose