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R A_ M: S A. Y'S 




TO THE YEAR 180 8. 


' The Muse of History has been bo mucli in love with Mars, that she has seldom conTersed 
with Minerva." — Henry. 



























Chap. Page 

^ I. Population — .- . _ 1 

II. Proprietary Government from its Commencement in 1670, till its Aboli- 
tion in 1719 14 

III. The Revolution in 1719 from Proprietary to Royal Government 31 

IV. Royal Government from 1720 to 1776 53 


V. Sec. 1. Contests with Spaniards 70 

" 2. Contests with Indians 84 

" 3. Military Operations against Pirates 113 

VI. The settlement of the Back Country 118 



VII. Sec. 1. Of Introductory Events and Taking of Arms 124 

" 2. Of the Extinction of Royal Authority and of the Royalists 141 

" 3. Of the Formation of a Regular Constitution 148 

*' 4. Of the Attack of the Fort on Sullivan's Island by Sir Peter 
Parker and Sir Henry Clinton, and the Invasion of the 

Cherokees by Colonel Williamson 152 

5. Of Independence and the Alliance with France 162 

6 Campaign of 1779 167 

7. Campaign of 1780— Fall of Charlestown 181 

8. Campaign of 1781 223 

9. Marion's Brigade 228 

10. Campaign of 1781 continued 237 

11. Campaign of 1782 249 

12. Revolutionary Miscellaneous History 252 


Chap. "Page 
I. Ecclesiastical History of South Carolina 1 

II. Medical History 28 

III. Le^al and Constitutional Histoi-y 68 

IV. Fiscal History 90 

V. Agricultural Plistnry 112 

VI. Commercial History 130 

VII. Of the Arts 136. 

VIII. Natural History 152 

IX. Literary History 196 

X. Miscellaneous Histoij — Virtues^ Vices, Customs, Diversions, &c., of 

the inhabitants - 213 

Dress - 227 

Complexion 228 

Manners and Character 228 

Fecundity, Population, and Longevity 231 

XL Civil History, from the termination of the Revolutionary War in 1783 

to the year 1808 235 



Lionel Chalmers, M. D 251 

Rev. Richard Clarke 251 

William Henry Drayton 252 

Christopher Gadsden 253 

Rev. Commissary Garden 256 

Alexander Garden, M. D 256 

Maj. John James 257 

Sir Nathaniel Johnson 258 

John Lining, M. D 260 

Henry Laurens 260 

John Laurens 264 

Gabriel Manigault 266 

Peter Manigault 267 

Thomas Reese, D. D 267 

Col. William Rhett 268 

John Rutledge 269 

Edward Rutledge 272 

Rev. Josiah Smith, A. M 273 

Rev. William Tennent, A. M 274 

Nicholas Trott, L. L. D 275 

William Wi-agg - 276 

Number Tagi: 

I. A Statistical Account of Edisto Island 278 

11. A Statistical Account of St. Stephen's District 291 

III. A Statistical View of Pendleton District 295 

IV. A Statistical Account of Orangeburg District 299 

V. A Statistical Account of Beaufort 3qj 

VI. A Statistical Account of Georgetown 3Q2 

VIL A Statistical Account of Claremont District 305 

VIII. A Statistical Account of Camden 3Qg 

IX. A General View of the upper country 307 


Tho growing importance of the United States excites an increasing curiosity to 
be acquainted with their early history. Of their wars and of their late revolulion 
much has been written, but a development of the causes which, in less than two 
centuries, have raised them from poverty to riches — from ignorance to knowledge — 
from weakness to power — from a handful of people to a mighty multitude — 
from rude woodsmen to polished citizens — from colonies guided by the leading 
strings of a distant island to a well regulated, self-governed community, has 
not been sufficiently the subject of attention. It is a work of too much mag- 
nitude to be incorporated in a general history of the whole, and cannot be 
done to purpose otherwise than by local histories of particular provinces or 
states. Much useful knowledge on these subjects is already lost, and more 
is fast hastening to oblivion. A considerable portion of it can now only be 
recovered by a recurrence to tradition — for records of many events worthy of 
being transmitted to posterity have either never been made, or if made have been 
destroyed. Every day that minute local histories of these states are deferred is an 
injury to posterity — for by means thereof more of that knowledge which ought to be 
transmitted to them will be irrecoverably lost. These views were so forcibly 
impressed on the author of the following work, that he began many years ago tn 
collect materials for writing a detailed history of the State in which Providence had 
cast his lot. In vain did he expect complete information from public records. On 
many interesting subjects they were silent — the most early were illegible — others 
were lost in the hurricanes or fii'es which at several successive periods have deso- 
lated Charleston, Much of what escaped from these calamities was destroyed in 
the invasions of the State by the British in 1779 and 1780. Of what remained every 
practicable use was made ; but to remedy their defects, application was made to the 
only repositories of facts on which reliance could be placed. This was the recol- 
lection of old citizens and especially of such as were the descendants of the first 
settlers. To them, in the year 1798, he addressed a circular letter and queries on 
a variety of subjects connected with the history of Carolina.* These were sent to 

* Sir— Having made some progress in. collecting materials for a general History of South-Carolina 
from its first settlement, I beg tlie favor of you to furnish me, in Charleston, with information on aay sub- 
jects that may properly be incorporated in such a work; and in particular, with answers to all or any of 
the following inijuiries, at least as far as they respect the vicinity of your residence- If you should not 
have leisure for this purpose, I request that you would put them in the hands of some suitable person who 
may be willing to collect and transmit the wished-for information. 

I am, your most obedient, humble servant, 

Charleston, November 19, 1798, DAVID RAMSAY. 

The time when the settlement of your parish or county began ? the date of the oldest grants of land ; 
and the place from which the first settlers migrated, with some account of the most remarkable of them ? 

The Indian name of your parish or county ; what tribes of Indtans formerly occupied It? notice of their 
monuments and relies which may remain ? if they have disappeared, when and by what means ? if still in 
your settlement, or the vicinity, what is their present state, condition and number? 

Biographical anecdotes of persons in your settlement, who have been distinguished for their ingenuity, 
enterprise, literature, talents civil or military ? 

Topographical* descriptions of your parish or county, or its vicinity— its mountainp, rivers, ponds, 
animals, useful and rare vegetable productio^ns ; stones, especially such as may be useful for mills, lime, 
architecture, pavements, or for other purposes ; remarkable falls, caverns, minerals, sands, clays, chalk, 
flint, marble, pitcoal, pigments, medicinal or poisonous substances, their uses and antidotes ? 

The former and present state of cultivation; what changes has it undergone ; an account of the first 
introduction of rice, indigo, Ac. Tour ideas of further icnprovements, either as to the introduction of new 
staples or the improvement of the old, or with respect to roads, bridges, canals, opening the navigation 
of the rivers or boatahle waters-? 

An estimate of the expenses and profits of a well-cultivated field, of any given dimensions, say 20 acres, 
in tobacco, cotton, rice, wheat, or corn, with the average price of land ? 

The distiuetion of soils, with a notice of the productions to which they are respectively best adapted; a 
notice of the different kinds of useful timber ; the proportioa between cleared and uncleared land ; and of 
the proportions between the number of inhabitants and number of acres ? 

What are the natural advantages in your vicinity for the erection of mills, and for other labor-saving 
machinery ; for catching and curing fish, and for raising stock ? 

Singular instances of longevity and fecundity ? observations on the weather, epidemic and other diseases, 
and the influence of the climate or of particular situations, employments or aliments ; and especially the 
effects of spirituous liquors ou the human constitution? 

Is your population, distinguishing white from black, increasing, decreasing, or stationary ; and the 
causes and evidences thereot? 


well informed persona in every part of the State, and afterwards printed in the 
newspapers. In consequence thereof, much useful information has been received. 

All the early histories which treat of Carolina were attentively perused, but from 
them little of consequence could be obtained. Dr. Hewat's historical account of 
the rise and progress of the colonies of South Carolina and Georgia, was read with 
much more advantage — on it greater reliance was placed — and of it more use has 
been made, than of all the histories which had preceded. To him every Carolinian 
ought to be obliged for preserving many useful facts which otherwise would before 
this day have been forgotten. His valuable work was written shortly before the 
American Revolution, when tradition went further back and was more recent than 
at present. Much of the information contained therein is said to have been de- 
rived from Lieutenant-Governor William Bull, who had been a public officer since 
1740, and who was the son of Lieutenant-Governor Bull, and the gi-andson of 
Stephen Bull, wbo had held public offices in succession from the very hrst settle- 
ment of the colony. For the thirty-four eventful years of revolutionary war and 
civil improvements which have intervened since Dr. Hewat wrote and the year 
1808, the author has been a cotemporary witness of all, and an actor in several of 
the scenes which are the ground-work of the history of South Carolina in that inter- 
esting period. 

Chalmers' political annals of the united colonies also afforded many statements of 
which use has been made. His knowledge was derived from an authentic source, 
the plantation office. In dates and early matters of fact, where he differed from 
other writers, his authority has been considered as paramount; but in matters of 
opinion, his assertions have been received with large allowance for the principles 
and feelings of a man who, in consequence of his adherence to the King of Great 
Britain, was not permitted to continue an inhabitant of the United tJtates during 
their revolutionary struggle for independence. 

Governor Drayton's view of South Carolina affords more interesting detailed 
views of the interior economy of the State than had ever been given. His official 
station and duties as governor opened to him sources of information inaccessible to 
all preceding writers. Much original matter preWously unnoticed is contained in 
his valuable work, and of it use has been made in the following pages. 

After the proposals had been issued for publishing the History of South Carolina, 
and the greater part of it had been written, a flood of local intelligence, in answer 
to the preceding queries, poured in on the author.. Much of this came too late to 
be incorporated in its proper place ; it was too valuable to be suppressed, and was 
therefore introduced in the appendix in the form of statistical accounts. To his 
many correspondents, the author returns the warmest acknowledgments for their 
valuable communications, which will be noticed in their proper place To the 
Reverend Donald M'Leod he is under very particular obligations for his minute, 
accurate, and satisfactory account of Edisto Island, and he begs leave to recom- 
mend it to others as a model worthy of imitation. If one or more persons in the 
different districts or other portions of the State, will take thp trouble of furnishing 
statements on the plan of Mr. M'Leod, the author pledges himself, if his life is 
spared, to connect the whole in one view, and give it to the public as a statistical 
account of South Carolina. If this proposal should be carried into effect a collec- 
tion of facts useful to philosophers, legislators, physicians and divines, would be 
brought to light. The interior economy of the State, which is now the least known 
of any one in the Union, would become the most known. South Carolina would rise 
in the esteem of the citizens of other States, many of whom, from not knowing 
better, load it with reproaches it does not deserve, and deny it much of that credit 
to which it is justly entitled. • 


Charleston, December oist, 1808. 

Whattnanufactures are. earned on? how have they been affected br the independence of tho^P ^fntos 
and by the establishment of the federal constitution ; and your thou-hts on the farther imnrovP^pitSnf 
thera? what public libraries have you ? what encouragement is ffiven to schools! anA r.nii,iir.. ■; T^^ -li,!;*: 
has been done, or is doinff, to advance literature or diffuse knowledge ' ^^^ ''°"^S" ^ '"''^ ^^^' 

What churches are there iu your parish or county; how long have they been erected ■ how are fh«v 
supplied with preachers? how are they attended on days of public worship f what harbeendont or i^ 
doing, to promote morality and religion among the people ? "wue, or isa 

The date, extent, consequences, and other circumstances of freshets, whirlwinds hurrirnnpq +>. 

remarkable events, which have taken place, as far back as can be recollected in your county °^ • i,'i 

C H A P T'E R I . 


Columbus, by the discovery of America, introduced the Old 
World to an acquaintance with the new. No sooner was the 
existence of a Western Continent known to the maritime 
powers of Europe, than they eagerly rushed forth to seize a 
portion of it for themselves. Though that part of the Ameri- 
can coast which stretches from the 36lh degree of north lati- 
tude to St. Augustine, was claimed by Spain, England and 
France, yet they all for a long time neglected it. Nearly two 
centuries passed away subsequent to its discovery, before any 
permanent settlement was established in the tract of country 
which is now called Carolina and Georgia. That germ of 
civilized population which took root, flourished, and spread 
in South Carolina, was first planted at or near Port Royal, in 
1670, by a few emigrants from England, under the direction 
of William Sayle, the first Governor of the province. Dis- 
satisfied with that situation, they removed, in 1671, to the 
Western banks of Ashley river, and there laid the foundation 
of old Uharlestown, on a plantation now belonging to Elias 
Lynch Horry. This site was injudiciously chosen, for it 
could not be approached by vessels of large burden, and was 
therefore abandoned. A second removal took place to Oyster 
Point, formed by the confluence of the rivers Ashley and 
Cooper. There, in the year 1680,* the foundation of the 
present city of Charleston was laid, and in one year, thirty 
houses were built. Neither the number of these first settlers, 
nor their names, with the exception of William Sayle and 
Joseph West, have reached posterity. They could not, however, 
have been many ; for all of them, together with provisions, 
arms, and utensils, requisite for their support, defence, and 
comfort, in a country inhabited only by savages, were brought 
from England to Carolina in two vessels. To increase the 
population, was a primary object. There is no evidence of 

* A monument in the Circular Church, erected to the memory of Kobert Tradd, 
states, "that he was the first male child born in Charlestown," and "that he died 
on the 30th of March, 1731, in the 52d year of his age." Though the precise time 
of his birth is not mentioned, tlie whole accords witli other historic evidence, that 
Charlestown began to be built in 1G80. 


any plan to procure settlers of any uniform description, either 
as to politics or religion, farther than that a decided preference 
was given to protestants. The emigrants were a medley of 
different nations and principles. From England the colony re- 
ceived both Roundheads and Cavaliers, the friends of the parlia- 
ment, and the adherents to the royal family. The servants of 
the crown, from motives of policy, encouraged the emigration 
of the former; and grants of land were freely bestowed on the 
latter, as a reward of their loyalty. Liberty of conscience, 
which was allowed to everyone by the charter, proved a great, 
encouragement to emigration. The settlement commenced at 
a period when conformity to the Church of England was 
urged with so high a hand, as to bear hard on many good 
men. In the reign of Charles the Second and James the 
Second, and till the revolution, which was eighteen years 
subsequent to the settlement of the province, dissenters la- 
bored under many grievances. They felt much and feared 
more; for, in common with many others, they entertained 
serious apprehensions of a popish successor to the crown of 
England. Men of this description, from a laudable jealousy 
of the rights of conscience, rejoiced in the prospect of securing 
religious liberty, though at the expense of exchanging the 
endearments of home, and cultivated society for the wilds of 
America. Such cheerfully embraced the offers of the pro- 
prietors ; and from them Carolina received a considerable 
number of its earliest settlers. 

The inducements to emigration were so many and so various, 
that every year brought new adventurers to the province. The 
friends of the proprietors were allured to it by the prospect of 
obtaining landed states at an easy rate. Others took refuge in 
it from the frowns of fortune^ and the rigor of creditors. 
Young men reduced to misery by folly and excess, embarked 
for the new settlement, where they had leisure to reform, and 
where necessity taught them the unknown virtues of prudence 
and temperance, llestless spirits, fond of roving, were grati- 
fied by emigration, and found in a new country abundant 
scope for enterprise and adventure. 

Besides individual emigrants, the colony frequently received 
groupes of settlers, from their attachment to particular leaders 
some common calamity, or general impulse. The first of 
these was a small colony from Barbadoes, which arrived in 
1671, under the auspices of Sir John Yeamans, who had ob- 
tained a large grant of land from the proprietors. With these 
were introduced the first, and for a considerable time the only 
slaves that were in Carolina. 

Shortly after, the colony received a valuable addition to its 
strength from the Dutch settlement of Nova-Belgia. This in 


1674 was conquered by England, and thereupon acquired the 
name of New York After their subjugation, many of the 
Dutch colonists, dissatisfied with their new masters, determined 
to emigrate. The proprietors of Carolina offered them lands, 
and sent two ships for their accommodation, which conveyed 
a considerable number of them to Charlestown. Stephen 
Bull, Surveyor General of the colony, had instructions to mark 
out lands on the southwest side of Ashley river, for their ac- 
commodation. They drew lots for their property, and formed 
a town which was called Jamestown. This was the first col- 
ony of Dutch settlersin Carolina. Their industry surmounted 
incredible hardships, and their success induced many from 
ancient Belgia afterwards to follow them to the western world. 
The inhabitants of Jamestown, finding their situation too nar- 
row, spread themselves over the country, and the town was 

In 1 679, King Charles II. ordered two small vessels to be pro- 
vided at his expense, to transport to Carolina several foreign 
protestants, who proposed to raise wine, oil, silk and other pro- 
ductions of the south. Though they did not succeed in en- 
riching the country with these valuable commodities, their 
descendants form a part of the present inhabitants. 

The revocation of the edict of Nantz, fifteen years subse- 
quent to the settlement of Carolina, contributed much to its 
population. In it, soon after that event, were transplanted 
from France the stocks from which have sprung the respect- 
able families of Bonneau, Bounetheau, Bordeaux, Benoist, 
Boiseau, Bocquet, Bacot, Chevalier, Cordes, Courterier, Chas- 
taignier, Dupre, Delysle, Dubose, Dubois, Deveaux, Dutarque, 
De la Consiliere, De Leiseline, Douxsaint, Dupont, Du Bour- 
dieu, D'Harriette, Faucheraud, Foissin, Faysoux, Gaillard, 
Gendron, Gignilhat, Guerard, Godin, Girardeaux, Guerin, 
Gourdine, Horry, Huger, Jeannerette, Legare, Laurens, La 
Roche, Lenud, Lansac, Marion, Mazyck, Manigault,* Melli- 

* A letter written in French by Judith Manigault, the wife oi' Peter Manigault, 
who were the foiuulers of the worthy family of that name, may give some faint 
idea of the sufferings of these French protestant refugees. This lady, when 
about twenty years old, embarked in ItiSS for Carolina, by the way of London. 
After her arrival, she wrote to her brother a letter, giving an account of her ad- 
ventures. This letter translated into English, is as follows: — " Since you desire 
it, I will give you an account of ourquitting France, and of our arrival in Carolina. 
During eight months, we had suffered from the contributions and the quartering 
of the soldiers, with many other inconveniences. We therefore resolved on quitting 
France by night, leaving the soldiers in their beds, and abandoning the house with 
its furniture. We contrived to hide ourselves at Romans, in Dauphigny, for ten 
days, while a search was made after us; but our hostess being faithful, did not 
betray us when questioned if she had seen us. From thence we passed to Lyons 
— from thence to Dijon — from which place, as well as from Langres, my eldest 
brother wrote to you ; but I know not if either of the letters reached you. He 
informed you that we were quitting France. He went to Madame de Choiseul's, 
which was of lio avail as she was dead, and her son-in-law had the command of 


champ, Monzon, Michau, Neufville, Prioleau,* Peronneau, 
Perdriau, Porcher, Postell, Peyre, Poyas, Ravenel, Royer, 
Simons, Sarazin, St. Julien, Serre, Trezevant. 

These, and several other French protestants, in consequence 
of the revocation of the Edict of Nantz, repaired to Carolina, 
and became useful inhabitants. Many of their descendants 
have been, and are, respectable and distinguished citizens.* 
They generally at first established themselves on Santee 

every thing: moreover, he gave us to understand that he perceived our intentioa 
of quitting France, and if we asked any favors from him, he would inform against 
us. We therefore made the best of our way for Metz, in Lorraine, where we 
embarked on the river Moselle, in order to go to Treves — from thence we passed 
to Cochieim, and to Coblentz — from thence to Cologne, where we quilted the 
Rhine, to go by land to Wesel — where we met with an host, who spoke a little 
French, and who informed us we were only thirty leagues from Lunenburg. We 
knew that you were in winter quarters there, by a letter of yours, received fifteen 
days before our departure from France, which mentioned that you should winter 
there. Our deceased mother and myself earnestly besought my eldest brother to 
go that way with us; or, leaving us with her, to pay. you a visit alone. It was in 
the depth of winter: but he would not hear of it, having Carolina so much in his 
head that he dreaded losing any opportunity of going thither. Oh, what grief the 
losing so fine an opportunity of seeing you at least once more, lias caused me I 
How have I regretted seeing a brother show so little feeling, and how often have I 
reproached him with it ! but he was our master, and we were constrained to do as 
he pleased. We passed on to Holland, to go from thence to England. I do not 
recollect exactly the year, whether 'Si or 'S5, but it was that in which King Charles 
of England died, fFeb. 1085.) We remained in London three months, waiting for 
a passage to Carolina. Having embarked, we were sadly ofl': the spotted fever 
made its appearance on board our vessel, of which disease many died, and amono- 
them our aged mother. Nine months elapsed before our arrival in Carolina. We 
touched at two ports— one a Portuguese, and the other an island called Bermuda, 
belonging to the English, to refit our vessel, which had been much injured in a storm! 
Our Captain having committed some misdemeanor, was put in prison, and the 
vessel seized. Our money was all spent, and it was with great dilficulty we pro- 
cured a passage in another vessel. Alter our arrival in Carolina, we suffered 
every kind of evil. In about eighteen months our elder brother, unaccustomed to 
the hard labor we had to undergo, died of a fever. Since leaving France we had 
experienced every kind of aBlictiou— disease— pestilence— famine— poverty— hard 
labor. I have been for six months together without lasting bread, working the o-round 
like a slave ; and I have even passed three or four years without always havin" it 
when I wanted it. God has done great things for us, enabling us to bear up under°so 
many trials. I should never have done, were I to attempt to detail to you all our adven- 
tures. Let it sufiice that God has had compass ion on me. and changed my fate to a more 
happy one, for which glory be unto him." The writer of the'above letter died in 
1711, seven years after she had given birth to Gabriel Manigault, who in a lon»- 
and uselul lite accumulated a iortune so large, as enabled him to aid the asvluiu 
of his persecuted parents with a loan of $2-20,000, for carrying on its revolutionary 
struggle for liberty and independence. This was done at an early period of the 
contest when no man was certain whether it would terminate in a revolution or 
a rebellion. 

"The Rev. Elias Prioleau, the founder of the eminently respectable flimily of 
that name in Carolina, migrated thither soon after the revocation of the Edict of 
Nantz, and brought with him from France a considerable part of his nrotesiant 
congregation. He was the grandson of Amhoine Prioli, who was elected IW 
of Venice in ihe year 101&. Many of his numerous descendants, who were born 
and constantly resided in or near Charleston, have approached or exceeded ,h»^^ 
70tb year; and several have survived, or now survive their bOth. ' 

tThree of the nine Presidents of the old Congress which conducted the TIni.ed 
States through the revolutionary war, were descendants of French npm . . 
refugees, who had migrated to America in consequence of the revoc»,,'„ J fi" 
Edict of Nantz. The persons alluded to were Henry Laurens,of South p °r 
John Jay, of New York ; and Elias Boudinot, of New Jersey. "-arolma; 


river ; and from them that part of the country in old maps 
was called French Santee. 

Besides these French refugees who came directly from 
France, there was a considerable number which, after a short 
residence in the northern countries of Europe and of America, 
particularly New York, repaired to Carolina, as a climate 
more similar to the one from which they had been driven, 
than the bleaker regions to which they had first resorted. Thus 
Carolina became a general rendezvous of French protestants, 
as had been originally contemplated by one of their distin- 
guished leaders, shortly after the discovery of America.* 

In the year 1696, Carolina received a small accession of 
inhabitants, by the arrival of a congregational church from 
Dorchester in Massachusetts, who, with their minister, the 
Rev. Joseph Lord, settled in a body near the head of Ashley 
river, about twenty-two miles from Charlestown. 

In the year 1713 the Assembly passed a law directing the 
public receiver to pay out of the treasury, fourteen poimds 
current money to the owners or importers of each healthy 
male British servant, not a criminal, betwixt the age of twelve 
and thirty years. 

No considerable groups of settlers are known to have emi- 
grated to South Carolina, between 1696 and 1730, but the 
province continued to advance in population from the arrival 
of many individuals. It in particular received a considerable 
accession of inhabitants from Georgia, at the first settlement 
of that Colony. The Colonists there were prohibited the use 

-'■"As early as the year 1562 Admiral Coligny, a zealous Huguenot, formed a pro- 
ject for founding an asylum for French protestants in America. He succeeded so 
far as to afJect a settlement under the direction of John "Ribault somewhere on 
the coast of Carolina, most probably on or near the island of St. Helena. These 
French settlers not being well supported, became discontented; and afterwaMs 
the whole of them put to sea, with a scanty stock of provisions. Pinched with 
hunger, they killed one of their number, who consented to be made a victim to 
save liis comrades. The survivors were taken up by an English ship, and carried 
into England. Two years after, or in 1564, M. Rene Laudonniere, with a consider- 
able reinforcement, arrived at the river of May on the same coast after it had 
been aliandoned. This second groupe of French protestants was killed by Pedro 
Melendez a Spanish officer, who had received orders from his King to drive the 
Huguenots out of the country, and to settle it with good Catholics. In execution 
of this order he hung several of the French settlers, and suspended over them a 
label signifying, "I do not do this as to Frenchmen, but as to Lutherans.'' The 
Spanish conquerers took the stand of the vanquished French and fortiiied it. But 
their cruelty was retaliated by Dominique De Gourges, who soon after sailed from 
France with a considerable force. On his arrival he successfully attacked the 
Spanish settlement, and after killing many in action, he hung the survivors on the 
same trees in which his countrymen had been previously hung, and with a sear- 
ing iron, impressed on a tablet of wood this inscription. "I do not do this as to 
Spaniards, but as to robbers and murderers." The victors, after razing the forts 
and destroying the settlement, returned to France. The country, thus abandoned 
by both French and Spaniards, remained in the undisturbed possession of the 
Indians for more than a hundred years. Soon after the end of that period, it was 
taken possession of by the English, and under their auspices became an asylum 
for French protestants, as it had been originally intended by Admiral Coligny. 


of spirituous liquors, and were not sviffered to own slaves. Sev- 
eral of thern soon found that Carolina would suit them better. 
In a few years after the royal purchase of the province in 1729, 
vigorous measures, which shall be hereafter related, were 
adopted by government for filling the country with inhabitants. 
Contracts were made — bounties offered — free lands assigned — 
and other inducements held out to allure settlers. The door was 
thrown open to protectants of all nations. Besides the distressed 
subjects of the British dominions, multitudes of the poor and 
unfortunate closed with these offers; and emigrated from 
Switzerland, Holland and Germany. Between the years 1730 
and 1750, a great addition was made to the strength of the 
province from these sources; Orangeburg, Congaree, and 
Wateree, received a large proportion of the German emigrants. 
Numbers of palatines arrived every year. The vessels which 
brought them over usually returned with a load of rice, and 
made profitable voyages. After some time the King of Prus- 
sia suddenly ptit a stop to this intercourse, by refusing to the 
emigrating palatines a passage through his dominions. Wil- 
liamsburg township was the rendezvous of the Irish. The 
Swiss took their stand on the northeast banks of the river 
Savannah. Soon after the suppression of the rebellions of 
1715 and 1745, in Scotland, many of the vanquished High- 
landers were transported to, or voluntarily sought an asylum 
in South Carolina. 

In the course of eighty-years, or about the middle of the 
18th century, the most valuable landj5 in the low country were 
taken up; and settlements were gradually progressing West- 
wardly on favorite spots in the middle and upper country. 
The extinction of Indian claims by a cession of territory to 
the King, was necessary to the safety of the advancing settlers. 
This was obtained in 1755. In that year Governor Glen met 
the Cherokee warriors in their own country, and held a treaty 
with them. After the usual -ceremonies were ended the 
Governor made a speech to the assembled warriors in the 
name of his King ; representing his great power, wealth, and 
goodness, and his particular regard for his children the Chero- 
kees. He reminded them of the happiness they had long 
enjoyed by living under his protection; and added, that he 
had many presents to make them, and expected they would 
surrender a share of their territories in return. He informed 
them of the wicked designs of the French, and hoped thev 
would permit none of them to enter their towns. He de- 
manded lands to build two forts in their country, to protect 
them against their enemies, and to be a retreat to their friends 
and allies, who furnished them Avith arms, ammunition 
hatchets, clothes, and everything that they wanted. ' 


When the Governor had finished his speech, Chiilochcullak 
arose, and in answer spoke to the following effect: " What I 
now speak, our father the great King should hear. We are 
brothers to the people of Carolina ; one house covers us all." 
Then taking a boy by the hand, he presented him to the Gov- 
ernor saying, " We, our wives, and our children, are all chil- 
dren of the great King George ; I have brought this child, that 
when he grows up. he may remember our agreement on this 
day, and tell it to the next generation, that it may be known 
forever." Then opening his bag of earth, and laying the same 
at the Governor's feet, he said : " We freely surrender a part 
of our lands to the great King. The French want our posses- 
sions, but we will defend them while one of our nation shall 
remain alive." Then delivering the Governor a string of 
wampum, in confirmation of what he said, he added ; " My 
speech is at an end — it is the voice of the Cherokee nation. 
I hope the Governor will send it to the King, that it may be 
kept for ever." 

At this congress, a prodigious extent of territory was ceded 
to the King of England. Deeds of conveyance were drawn 
up, and formally executed, by the head men of the Cherokees 
in the name of the whole nation. It contained not only much 
rich land, but an air and climate more healthy than in the 
maritime parts. It exhibited many pleasant and romantic 
scenes, formed by an intermixture of beautiful hills — fruitful 
valleys — rugged rocks — clear streams, and pleasant waterfalls. 
The acquisition, at that time, was of importance to Carolina; 
for it removed the savages at a greater distance from the set- 
tlements, and allowed the inhabitants liberty to extend back- 
wards in proportion as their numbers increased. 

After the cession of these lands, governor Glen built a fort 
about three hundred miles from Charlestown. This was after- 
wards called fort Prince George, and was situated on the 
banks of the river Savannah, and within gun shot of an Indian 
town called Keowee. About an hundred and seventy miles 
farther down, a second stronghold, called fort Moore, was con- 
structed in a beautiful commanding situation, on the banks 
of the same river. In the year following a third fort was 
erected, called fort Loudon, among the upper Cherokees, 
situated on Tennessee river, upwards of five hundred miles 
from Charlestown. 

At the time Governor Glen was procuring additional terri- 
tory for South Carolina, the events of war were furnishing 
inhabitants for its cultivation. The province of Nova Scotia 
was originally settled by the French, under the name of 
Acadie. When the province was surrendered to the English, 
by the treaty of Utrecht, it was stipulated for the inhabitants 


that they should be permitted to hold their lands on condi- 
tion of taking the oath of allegiance to their new sovereign. 
With this condition they refused to comply, without annexing 
to it as a qualification that they should not be called upon to 
bear arms in defence of the province. 

Though this qualification to their oaths of allegiance, which 
was acceded to by the commanding officer of the British 
forces, was afterwards disallowed by the crown, yet the French 
inhabitants of Nova Scotia continued to consider themselves 
as neutrals. Their love of France, however, would not permit 
them to conform their conduct to the character they had 
assumed. In all the contests between the two nations, re- 
specting the possession of their countrj^, or the boundaries of 
Nova Scotia, their conduct was influenced rather by their 
wishes than their duty, and about three hundred of them 
were captured in the year 1755, with the French garrison of 
Beau Sejour, fighting against the English. 

In the obstinate conflict which was then commencing be- 
tween France and England for American territory, the con- 
tinuance of these acadian neutrals in Nova Scotia was 
thought dangerous. To expel them from the country, leaving 
them at liberty to choose their place of residence, would be 
to reinforce the French in Canada. A council was held for 
the purpose of deciding on the destinies of these unfortunate 
people; and the severe policy was adopted of removing them 
from their homes, and dispersing them among the other 
British colonies. This harsh measure was immediately put 
into execution. About 1500 of them were sent to Charles- 
town. Some of these exiles have risen to wealth and distinc- 
tion in Carolina, though it was not originally their country 
either by birth or choice; but most of them in a short time 
after peace, left the country. They were, in general, a hard 
working people. Among them were several industrious fisher- 
men, who plentifully supplied the market with fish. 

Soon after the conclusion of the treaty, between Governor 
Glen and the Indians, the settlers began to stretch backward, 
and occupied land above an hundred and fifty miles from the 
shores of the Atlantic. New emigrants from Ireland, Ger- 
many, and the northern colonies, obtained grants in these 
interior parts; and introduced the cultivation of wheat, hemp, 
flax, and tobacco, for which the soil answered better than in 
the low lands near the sea. Their cattle, sheep, hoo^s and 
horses, multiplied rapidly ; having a country of vast^ extent 
to range over, they found plenty of provisions in almost every 
season. New settlers were invited to these hilly and more 
healthy parts, where they labored with greater safety than 
among the swamps. By degrees, public roads were made 


and they conveyed their produce in wagons to the capital, 
where they found an excellent market for all their productions. 

The lands thus obtained by treaty form the present districts 
of Edgefield, Abbeville, Laurens, Newberry, Union, Spartan- 
burg, York, Chester, Fairfield and Richland. Their value, in 
a few years after their cession, was enhanced by the peace of 
Paris, in 1763; for the stipulations therein contained gave 
security to the frontiers, and settled all disputes about the 
boundaries of the English colonies. By the cession of 
Florida it removed troublesome neighbors, and left the sav- 
ages so much in the power of the English as to deter them 
from future hostilities. The population of the newly acquired 
territory, form that period, increased with unusual rapidity. 
The assembly, desirous of strengthening their frontier, wisely 
appropriated a large fund for bounties to foreign protestants, 
and such industrious poor people of Britain and Ireland, as 
should resort to the province within three years and settle on 
the inland parts. Two townships, each containing 48,000 
acres, were laid out to be divided among emigrants, allowing 
one hundred acres for every man, and fifty for every woman 
and child, that should come and settle in them. The face of 
the country in those interior parts, is variable and beautiful. 
The air mild and wholesome, and the soil exceedingly fertile. 
The salubrity of the climate, connected with the provincial 
bounty, and the fertility of the soil, induced great numbers to 
fix themselves in these western regions. 

About the same time, a remarkable affair happened in 
Germany, by which South Carolina received a considerable 
acquisition. One Stumpel, who had been an officer in the 
King of Prussia's service, being reduced at the peace, applied 
to the British Ministry for a tract of land in America; and 
having got some encouragement, returned to Germany, where, 
by deceitful promises, he seduced between five and six hun- 
dred ignorant people from their native country. When these 
poor palatines arrived in England, Stumpel, finding himself 
unable to perform his promises, fled, leaving them without 
money or friends, exposed in the open field, and ready to 
perish through want While they were in this starving con- 
dition, a humane clergyman took compassion on them, and 
published their deplorable case in a newspaper. He pleaded 
for the mercy and protection of government, until an oppor- 
tunity might offer of transporting them to some of the British 
colonies. A bounty of three hundred pounds was allowed 
them. Tents were ordered for the accommodation of such as 
had been permitted to come ashore, and money was sent for 
the relief of those that were confined on board. The public 
spirited citizens of London chose a committee to raise money 


for the relief of these poor palatines. In a few days these 
unfortunate strangers, from the depth of indigence and dis- 
tress, were raised to comfortable circumstances. The com- 
mittee, finding the money received more than sufficient to 
relieve their present distress, applied to the king to know his 
royal pleasure with respect to the future disposal of the 
German protestants. His majesty, sensible that his colony of 
South Carolina had not its proportion of white inhabitants, 
signified his desire of transporting them to that province. 

Accordingly two ships of two hu'ndred tons each were 
provided for their accommodation, and provisions of all 
kinds laid in for the voyage. An hundred and fifty stand of 
arms were given to them for their defence after their arrival 
in America. Every thing being ready for their embarkation, 
the palatines broke up their camp and proceeded to the ships, 
attended by several of their benefactors, of whom they took 
their leave with songs of praise to God in their mouths and 
tears of gratitude in their eyes. 

In the month of April, 1764, they arrived at Charlestown, 
and presented a letter from the lords commissioners for trade 
and plantations to Governor Boone; acquainting him that his 
majesty had been pleased to take the poor palatines under his 
royal care and protection ; and, as many of them were versed 
in the culture of silk and vines, had ordered that a settlement 
be provided for them in Carolina, in a situation most proper 
for these purposes. The assembly voted five hundred pounds 
sterling to be distributed among them. That they might be 
settled in a body, one of the two townships was allotted for 
them and divided in the most equitable manner into small 
tracts, for the accommodation of each family, and all possi- 
ble assistance was given towards promoting their speedy and 
comfortable settlement. 

In the same year Carolina received 212 settlers from 
France. Soon after the peace of Paris, the Rev. Mr. Gibert, a 
popular preacher, prevailed on a number of persecuted pr'o- 
testant families to seek an asylum in South Carolina. On his 
solicitation, the government, of England encouraged the 
project, and furnished the means of transportation. Mr. 
Gibert repaired to England, and directed the movements of 
the refugees. They found it necessaiy to leave France pri- 
vately, at different times, and in small numbers. After leaving 
their native country, they rendezvoused at Plymouth and 
sailing from that port arrived in Charlestown in April 'l764. 
They were received by the Carolinians with great kindness 
and hospitality. They, generally, retired to spend the ap- 
proaching summer in Beaufort. But in the month of October 
following they returned to Charlestown, and set out for the 


back country, having lost but one of their number since tVieir 
landing. The province furnished them with the means of 
conveyance to Long Cane. Vacant lands were laid out for 
their use; and they received warrants for the quantities of 
land granted to them respectively, by the bounty of the Pro- 
vincial Assembly. On their arrival at the place assigned 
them, they gave it the name of New Bourdeaux, after the 
capital of the province from which most of them had emi- 
grated. They have been distinguished for their industry and 
good morals. The climate has agreed so well with them, 
that they have generally enjoyed good health, and several of 
them have survived their 80th year. The manufacture of 
silk is still continued among them. The nephew of the 
original projector of the settlement is one of the present rep- 
resentatives of Abbeville district, in the State Legislature. 
This was the third groupe of settlers Carolina received from 

Besides foreign protestants, several persons from England 
and Scotland resorted to Carolina after the peace of 1763. 
But of all other countries, none has furnished the province 
with so many inhabitants as Ireland. Scarce a ship sailed 
from any of its ports for Charlestown that was not crowded 
with men, women, and children. The bounty allowed to 
new settlers, induced numbers of these people to resort to 
Carolina. The merchants finding this bounty equivalent to 
the expenses of the passage, persuaded the people to embark. 
Many causes may be assigned for this spirit of emigration 
from Ireland, but domestic oppression was the most powerful 
and prevalent. 

JSTor were these the only sources from which an increase 
of population was at this time derived. Notwithstanding 
the vast extent of territory contained in the provinces of 
Virginia and Pennsylvania, a scarcity of improvable lands 
began to be felt in these colonies, and poor people could not 
find vacant spots in them equal to their expectations. In 
Carolina the case was different ; for there large tracts of the 
best lands lay waste. This induced many of the northern 
colonists to migrate to the South. About this time above a 
thousand families with their effects, in the space of one year 
resorted to South Carolina, driving their cattle, hogs, and 
horses over land before them. Lands were allotted them in 
its western woods, which soon became the most populous 
parts of the province. The frontiers were not only strength- 
ened and secured by new settlers, but the old ones began to 
stretch backward, and the demand for lands in the inte- 
rior parts every year increased. From the time in which 
America was secured by the peace of 1763, and particularly 


for the twelve subsequent years, the province made rapid 
progress in agriculture, numbers and wealth. 

In the revolutionary war which commenced in 1775, little 
addition was made either to the population or settlements in 
South Carolina. But this was amply compensated by the 
multitudes from Europe and the more northern parts of 
America, which poured into the State, shortly after the peace 
of 1783. The two new western districts now called Pendle- 
ton and Greenville, which were obtained by treaty founded 
on conquest from the Cherokee Indians in 1777, filled so 
rapidly with inhabitants, that in the year 1800 they alone 
contained upwards of 30,000 inhabitants; which exceeded 
the population of the whole province in the 64th year from 
its first settlement. 

Hitherto Carohna had been an asylum to those who fled 
from tyranny and persecution — to the exile — the weary and 
heavy laden — the wretched and unfortunate — and to those 
who were bowed down with poverty and oppression. A new 
variety of human misery was lately presented for the exercise 
of its hospitality. The insecurity of life, liberty, and pro- 
perty, in revolutionary France, and the indiscriminate 
massacre of Frenchmen in St. Domingo, drove several hun- 
dreds in the last years of the 18th century to the shores of 
Carolina. They were kindly received; and, such as were in 
need, received a temporary accommodation at the expense of 
the public. Most of them fixed their residence in or near 

These were the last groupe of settlers the State received 
from foreign countries. The new States and Territories to 
the southward and westward, draw to them so many of the 
inhabitants of South Carolina, that emigration from it at 
present nearly balances migration to it. Its future population 
must in a great measure depend on the natural increase of 
its own inhabitants. So much of the soil is unimproved, or 
so imperfectly cultivated, that the introduction and extension 
of a proper system of husbandry will afford support to ten 
Jimes the number of its present inhabitants. 

So many and so various have been the sources from which 
Carolina has derived her population, that a considerable 
period must elapse, before the people amalgamate into amass 
possessing an uniform national character. This event daily 
draws nearer; for each successive generation drops a part of 
the peculiarities of its immediate predecessors. The in- 
fluence of climate and government will have a similar effect. 
The different languages, and dialects, introduced by the set- 
tlers from different countries, are gradually giving place to 
the English. So much similarity prevails among the de- 


scendants of the early emigrants from the Old World, that 
strangers cannot ascertain the original country of the ancestors 
of the present race. 

If comparisons among the different nations which have 
contributed to the population of Carolina were proper, it 
might be added that the Scotch and Dutch were the most 
useful emigrants. They both brought with them, and gen- 
erally retained in an eminent degree, the virtues of industry 
and economy so peculiarly necessary in a new country. To 
the former. South Carolina is indebted for much of its early 
literature. A great proportion of its physicians, clergymen, 
lawyers, and schoolmasters, wer.e from North Britain. The 
Scotch had also the address frequently to advance them- 
selves by marriage. The instances of their increasing the 
property thus acquired, are many — of their dissipating it, 
very few. 

Emigrants from all countries on application readily ob- 
tained grants of land ; either by private agreement from the 
proprietors, or from officers appointed by them, and acting 
under their instructions. The fees of office were not unrea- 
sonable. The price first fixed by the proprietors, was at the 
rate of £20 sterling for a thousand acres, and an annual 
quit-rent of one shilling for every hundred acres. When a 
warrant for taking up land was obtained, the person in whose 
favor it was granted had to choose where it should be located. 
It was then surveyed and marked. Plats and grants were 
also signed, recorded and delivered to the purchasers. This 
was the common mode of obtaining landed estates in Carolina, 
and the tenure was a freehold. They who could not ad- 
vance the purchase money, obtained their lands on condition 
of their paying one penny annual rent for every acre. The 
first settlers, having the first choice of lands, had great ad- 
vantages ; and many of their descendants now enjoy large 
and valuable estates, purchased by their ancestors for incon- 
siderable sums. This mode of settlement by indiscriminate 
Jocation, dispersed the inhabitants over the country without 
union or system. The settlers generally preferred the sea 
coast — the margins of rivers — and other fertile grounds; and 
gradually located themselves westwardly on the good land, 
leaving the bad untouched. For the first eighty years, they 
had advanced very little beyond an equal number of miles ; 
but in the following fifty, they stretched to the Alleghany 
Mountains nearly three hundred miles from the ocean. 
While the people of New England extended their settlements 
exclusively by townships, presenting a compact front to the 
Indians, and co-extending the means of instruction in religion 
and learning with their population, South Carolina, in com- 


mon with the other Southern provinces proceeding on the 
former plan, deprived her inhabitants of the many advantages 
connected with compact settlements. These evils are now 
done away; for, since the revolution, nearly all the vacant 
land in the State has been taken up. They who have been 
obliged to content themselves witli the long neglected poor 
lands, have the consolation that what they lost one way is 
made up in another; for it is found, that the high and dry 
pine land is by far the most healthy. 



Proprietary Government, from its Commencement in 1670, 
till its Abolition in 1719. 

In the course of the 130 years in which South Carohna 
increased from a handful of adventurers to 345,591 inhab- 
itants, the government was changed, first from proprietary to 
regal; and secondly, from regal to representative. The first 
continued forty-nine years, the second fifty-seven; and the 
third, after a lapse of thirty-two years, is now in the bloom 
and vigor of youth, promising a long duration. 

Near the end of the fifteenth century, the King of England, 
according to currently received opinions, obtained a property 
in the soil of North America, from the circumstance that 
Cabot, one of his subjects, was the first Christian who sailed 
along the coast Property thus easily acquired, was with 
equal facility given away. Charles the Second, soon after 
his restoration to the throne of his ancestors, granted to 
Edward, Earl of Clarendon, George, Duke of Albemarle, Wil- 
liam, Lord Craven, John, Lord Berkeley, Anthony, Lord Ash- 
ley, Sir George Carteret, Sir William Berkeley, and Sir John 
Colleton, all the lands lying between the 31st and 36th degree 
of north latitude. In two years more he enlarged the grant 
from the 29th degree of north latitude to 36° 30', and from 
these points on the sea coast westwardly in parallel lines to the 
Pacific ocean. Of this immense region the King constituted 
them absolute lords and proprietors, with the reservation of 
the dominion of the country to himself and successors. These 
extensive limits underwent many changes from the resump- 
tion of royal charters; treaties — particularly those of 1763 and 


1783; royal instructions to governors; boundary lilies run and 
settlements made by authorized commissioners; State cession 
to Congress; conquests from and treaties with Indians. 

The present situation and limits of South Carolina are as 
follows. It is situated in North America; between 32 and 
35° 8' and 6° 10' west longitude, from Washington, the seat 
of government of the United States of America. North Caro- 
lina stretches along its northern and northeastern frontier; 
Tennessee along its northwestern, and Georgia along its south- 
ern frontier; and the Atlantic ocean bounds its eastern limits. 

South Carolina is bounded northwardly by a line commenc- 
ing at a cedar stake marked with nine notches on the shore 
of the Atlantic ocean, near the mouth of Little river, then 
"pursuing by many traverses a coast west-north-west, until it 
arrives at the fork of Catauba river; thence due west until it 
arrives at a point of intersection in the Apalachean moun- 
tains. From thence, due south until it strikes Chatuga, the 
most northern branch or stream of Tugoloo river. Thence 
along the said river Tugoloo to its confluence with the river 
Keowee; thence along the river Savannah, until it intersects 
the Atlantic ocean by its most northern mouth ; thence north- 
eastwardly, along the Atlantic ocean, including the islands, 
until it intersects the northern boundary near the entrance of 
Little river. These boundaries include an area somewhat 
triangular, of about 24,0080 square miles ; whereof 9,570 lie 
above the falls of the rivers, and 14,510 are between the falls 
and the Atlantic ocean. 

King Charles the Second also gave to the lords proprietors 
of Carolina authority to enact, with the assent of the freemen 
of the colony, any laws they should judge necessary; to erect 
courts of judicature, and to appoint judges, magistrates and 
officers; to erect forts, castles, cities and towns; to make war, 
and in case of necessity, to exercise martial law; to build har- 
bors, make prrts, and enjoy customs and subsidies, imposed 
with the consent of the freemen, on goods loaded and un- 
loaded. The King also granted to the proprietors, authority 
to allow indulgences and dispensations in religious aff"airs, 
and that no person to whom such Uberty should be granted 
was to be molested for any difference of speculative opinions 
with respect to religion, provided he did not disturb the peace 
of the community. 

The preamble of this grant states, "That the grantees being 
excited with a laudable and pious zeal for the propagation of 
the gospel, begged a certain country in the parts of America, 
not yet cultivated and planted, or only inhabited by some bar- 
barous people who had no knowledge of God." Invested with 
these ample powers, the proprietors formed a joint stock for 


the transportation of settlers to their projected colony. To 
induce adventurers, they declared, " That all persons settling 
on Charles river, to the southward of Cape Fear, shall have 
power to fortify its banks, taking the oath of allegiance to the 
King, and submitting to the government of the proprietors: 
that the emigrants may present to them thirteen persons, in 
order that they may appoint a Governor and council of six, for 
three years; that an assembly, composed of the Governor, the 
council, and delegates of the freemen, should be called as soon 
as the circumstances of the colony would allow, with power 
to make laws, which should be neither contrary to the laws 
of England, nor of any validity after the publication of the 
dissent of the proprietors : that every person should enjoy the 
most perfect freedom in religion: that during five years every 
freeman should be allowed one hundred acres of land and 
fifty for every servant, paying only one half-penny an acre: 
that the same freedom from customs which had been conferred 
by the royal charter should be allowed to every one." Such 
were the original conditions on which Carolina was planted. 
And thus it was established upon the broad foundation of a 
regular system of freedom, both civil and religious. 

The proprietors, anxious to improve their property, with the 
aid of the celebrated John Locke, framed a constitution and 
laws for the government of their colony. These were in sub- 
stance as follows: "The eldest of the eight proprietors was 
always to be Palatine, and at his decease was to be succeeded 
by the eldest of the seven survivors. This Palatine was to 
sit as President of the Palatine's Court, of which he and three 
more of the proprietors made a quorum, and had the manage- 
ment and execution of the powers of their charter. This 
Court was to stand in room of the King, and give their assent 
or dissent to all laws made by the Legislature of the colony. 
The Palatine was to have power to nominate and appoint 
the Governor, who, after obtaining the royal approbation, 
became his representative in Carolina. Each of the seven 
proprietors was to have the privilege of appointing a deputy 
to sit as his representative in Parliament, and to act agreeably 
to his instructions. Besides a Governor, two other branches, 
somewhat similar to the old Saxon constitution, were to be 
established; an upper and lower House of Assembly: which 
three branches were to be called a Parliament, and to consti- 
tute the Legislature of the country. The parliament was to 
be chosen every two years. No act of the Legislature was to 
have any force unless ratified in open Parliament, during the 
same session, and even then to continue no longer in force 
than the next biennial Parliament, unless in the meantime it 
be ratified by the hands and seals of the Palatine and three 


proprietors. The upper house was to consist of the seven 
deputies, seven of the oldest landgraves and cassiques, and 
seven chosen by the Assembly. As in the other provinces, 
the lower house was to be composed of the representatives 
from the different counties and towns. Several officers were 
also to be appointed, such as an admiral, a secretary, a chief 
justice, a surveyor, a treasurer, a marshal, and register; and 
besides these, each county was to have a sheriff and four jus- 
tices of the peace. Three classes of the nobility were to be 
established, called barons, cassiques, and landgraves ; the first 
to possess twelve, the second twenty-four, and the third forty- 
eight thousand acres of land, and their possessions were to be 
unalienable. Military officers were also to be nominated; and 
all inhabitants, from sixteen to sixty years of age, as in the 
times of feudal government, when regularly summoned, were 
to appear under arms, and in time of war to take the field. 

With respect to religion, three terms of communion were 
fixed. First, to believe that there is a God. Secondly, that 
he is to be worshipped. And thirdly, that it is lawful, and 
the duty of every man when called upon by those in authority, 
to bear witness to the truth. Without acknowledging which, 
no man was permitted to be a freeman, or to have any estate 
or habitation in Carolina. But persecution for observing dif- 
ferent modes and ways of worship, was expressly forbidden ; 
and every man was to be left full liberty of conscience, and 
might worship God in that manner which he thought most 
conformable to the Divine will and revealed word. 

Notwithstanding these preparations, several years elapsed 
before the proprietors of Carolina made any serious efforts 
towards its settlement. In '1667 they fitted out a ship, gave 
the command of it to Captain William Sayle, and sent him 
out to bring them some account of the country. He sailed 
along the coast of CaroUna, where he observed several large 
navigable rivers emptying themselves into the ocean ; and a 
fiat country covered with woods. He attempted to go ashore 
in his boat, but observing some savages on the banks of the 
rivers, he desisted- Having explored the coast and the mouths 
of the rivers, he returned to England. 

His report to the proprietors was favorable. He praised 
their possessions, and encouraged them to engage with vigor 
in the execution of their project. Thus encouraged, they 
began to make preparations for sending a colony to commence 
a settlement. Two ships were procured; on board of which 
a number of adventurers embarked with provisions, arms, 
and utensils requisite for building and cultivation. William 
Sayle, who had visited the country, was appointed the first 
Governor of it; and received a commission, bearing date 


July 26th, 1669. The expenses of this first embarkation 
amounted to twelve thousand pounds sterling. The settlers 
must have been few in number, and no ways adequate to 
the undertaking.* The country now called Carolina, on 
which they settled, was then an immense hunting ground 
filled with wild animals; overgrown with forests — partly 
covered with swamps, and roamed over, rather than inhabited, 
by a great number of savage tribes, subsisting on the chase 
and often at war with each other. 

Governor Sayle first landed at or near Beaufort, early in 
1670, but soon moved northwardly and took possession of 
some high ground on the western banks of Ashley river, near 
its mouth; and there laid the foundations of old Charles- 
town. This was also abandoned ; and in 1680 Oyster Point, 
at the confluence of Ashley and Cooper rivers, was fixed upon 
as the seat of government, and head-quarters of the settle- 
ment. Soon after his arrival governor Sayle died, and was 
succeeded by Joseph West; and he by Sir John Yeamans, 
who left the colony, and was succeeded by Joseph West on 
a second appointment. These changes took place in the 
short space of four years. The people, who had hitherto 
lived under a species of military government, began about 
this time to form a Legislature for establishing civil regula- 
tions. In the year 1674 the freemen of Carolina, meeting by 
summons at old Charlestown, elected Representatives for the 
government of the colony. There was now the Governor, 
and Upper and Lower House of Assembly; and these three 
branches took the name of Parliament. Of the laws passed 
by them nothing is known. The first law which has been 
found on record in the office of the Secretary of the Province, 
is dated May 26th, 1682 ; eight years subsequent to the first 
meeting of the first Parliament in Carolina. Many were the 
difficulties with which these settlers had to-contend. They 
were c^bliged to stand in a constant posture of defence. While 
one party was employed in raising their little habitations, 
another was always kept under arms to watch the Indians. 

» We have the authority of John Archdale, Governor of South Carolina in 
1695, that the number of hostile Indians was considerably lessened about the 
time this settlement took place. In the second page of his description of South 
Carolina, printed in 1707, in London, he observed. •' That in the first settlement 
of Carolina, the hand of God was eminently seen in thinning the Indians to make 
room for the English. As for example; in Carolina in which were seated two 
potent nations, called the Westoes and Savannahs, which contained inanv thou- 
sands, who broke out into an unusual civil war; and thereby reduced themselves 
into a small number: and the Westoes, the more cruel of the two were "at the 
last forced quite out of that province ; and the Savannahs continued' n-ood friends 
nd useful neighbors to the English. But again it at other tiines nleased 
Ahnigbty God to send unusual sicknesses amongst them, as the small nox &c 
to lessen their numbers; so that the English, in comparison to the sLnSni-ds' 
have but little Indian blood to answer for." '"^ bpaniards, 


While they gathered oysters with one hand for subsistence, 
they were obliged to carry guns in the other for self-defence. 
The only fresh provisions they could procure were fish from 
the river, or what game they could kill with their guns. They 
raised their scanty crops not only with the sweat of their 
brows, but at the risk of their lives. Except a few negroes, 
whom Sir John Yeamans and his followers brought with 
them from Barbadoes, there were no laborers' but Europeans. 
Till the trees were felled, and the grounds cleared, domestic 
animals could afford to the planters no assistance. White 
men, exposed to the heat of the climate and the terrors of 
surrounding savages, had alone to encounter the hardships of 
clearing and cultivating the ground. Provisions, when raised, 
were exposed to the plundering parties of Indians. One day 
often robbed the planter of the dear-bought fruits of a whole 
year's toil. European grains, with which were made the 
first experiments of planting, proved suitable neither to soil 
nor climate. Spots of barren and sandy land, which were 
first and most easily cleared, poorly rewarded the toil of the 
cultivator. It was difficult for the proprietors to furnish a 
regular supply of provisions. All the horrors of a famine 
were anticipated. The people feeling much, and fearing 
more, threatened to compel the Governor to abandon the set- 
tlement.* One sloop was dispatched to Virginia, and another 
to Barbadoes to bring provisions. Before their return a sup- 
ply arrived from England, together with some new settlers, 
which reanimated the expiring hopes of the colonists. 

~ It might have been expected that these adventurers, who 
were all embarked on the same design, would be animated by 
one spirit and zealous to maintain harmony and peace among 
themselves; for they had all the same hardships to encounter, 
and the same enemies to fear; yet the reverse took place. 
The most numerous party in the country were dissenters from 
the established Church of England. A number of cavaliers 
having received ample grants of lands, brought over their 
families and effects and also settled in Carolina. The cava- 
liers were highly favored by the proprietors, and respected as 
men of honor, loyalty and fidelity. They met with great 
encouragement, and were generally preferred to offices of trust 
and authority. The puritans, on the other hand, viewed 
them with jealous eyes ; and having sufliered from them in 
England, could not bear to see the smallest atom of power 
committed to them in Carolina. Hence the seeds of strife 

* A similar measure had been carried into effect by some French settlers, who 
had located themselves on the coast of CaroUna, about 120 years before. Their 
settlement was abandoned in less than two years after its commencement, and 
was never renewed. 


and division which had been imported into the colony, began 
not only to spring, but to grow rank. No common dangers 
nor difRcnlties could obliterate the prejudices and animosities 
which the first settlers had contracted in England. The 
odious terms or distinction which had prevailed in the mother 
country, were revived and propagated ainong the people of 
the infant colony. While one party was attached to the 
Church of England the other, which had fled from the rigor 
of ecclesiastical power, was jealous above all things of their 
religious liberties and could bear no encroachment on them. 
The same scenes of debate and contention which had taken 
place in England, for some time before and after the restora- 
tion of Charles the Second, were acted over again on the 
little theatre of Carolina ; but without bloodshed or legal 

Another source of difficulty arose to government from the 
different manners of the colonists. Several of the first emi- 
grants, unaccustomed to rural labors and frugal simplicity, 
were pampered citizens; whose wants luxury had increased 
and rendered impatient of fatigue. By such, the sober lives 
and rigid morals of the puritans were made the objects of 
ridicule. The puritans on the other hand, exasperated against 
their scorners, violently opposed their influence among the 
people. Hence arose difficulties in framing laws — in distrib- 
uting justice — and in maintaining public order. Governor 
West was at no small pains to restrain these dissentions; but 
having a Council composed of cavaliers, was unable to calm 
the tumult. In spite of his authority the puritans and cava- 
liers continued to insult and oppose each other. In conse- 
quence of their fierce contentions, the colony was distracted 
with domestic differences, and poorly prepared for defence 
against external enemies. Disputes between the proprietors 
and settlers, were also of an early origin. 

In most measures for the immediate support of the colony, 
they for some time cordially concurred; but this was of short 
duration. The same scenes which for more than 5000 years 
had taken place in the Old World, began to open in this set- 
tlement of the new. Those who govern and those who are 
governed, think they can never gain too much on each other. 
The existence of a court and country party, results from the na- 
ture of man; and is found more or less in every Government 

The first contest between the proprietors and the settlers, 
was respecting advances for the encouragement of the settlers. 
The former for some time gratuitously supplied the latter with 
provisions, clothes, and farming utensils. The proprietors 
afterwards annually sent out similar supplies to be exchanged 
with the colonists for the productions of their labor, or sold 


to them at a small advance on the original cost. After 
expending upwards of £ 18,000 sterling, in this manner, for the 
encouragement of the settlement, they wished to hold their 
hands and to leave the settlers to depend on their own exer- 
tions. The difRculties attendant on the first stage of cultivation 
furnished the inhabitants with apologies for soliciting a con- 
tinuation of the customary supplies, and a farther extension 
of time to pay for them. The economy of the proprietors and 
the necessities of the settlers, could not easily he compromised. 
The one thought they had already done too much; the other 
that they had not received enough. To the latter, requesting 
a supply of cattle to be sent out to them, the proprietors re- 
plied, as a reason for their refusal, " That they wished not to 
encourage graziers but planters." 

It is from this epoch that we may date the prosperity of 
Carolina; because she was then taught a lesson, which it is of 
the greatest importance for every individual and every state 
to know, " That she must altogether depend on her own exer- 

Two parties arose; one in support of the prerogative and 
authority of the proprietors, the other in defence of the rights 
and liberties of the people. The former contended that the 
laws received from England respecting government, ought to 
be implicitly observed. The latter kept in view their local 
circumstances, and maintained that the free men of the colony 
were under obligations to observe them only so far as they 
were consistent with the interests of individuals, and the 
prosperity of the settlement. In this situation, no governor 
could long support his power among a number of bold adven- 
turers, who were impatient of every restraint which had the 
least tendency to obstruct their favorite views. Whenever he 
attempted to interpose his feeble authority, they insulted his 
person and complained of his administration till he was re- 
moved from office. 

In the short space of four years, from 1682 till 1686, there 
were no less than five Governors; Joseph Morton, Joseph 
West, Richard Kirle, Robert Quarry and James Colleton. The 
last named, who was a landgrave, and brother to one of the 
proprietors, as well as Governor, determined to exert his au- 
thority in compelling the people to pay up their arrears- of 
quit-rents ; which, though very trifling, were burdensome, as 
not one acre out of a thousand, for which quit-rents were 
demanded, had hitherto yielded any profit. For this purpose, 
Governor Colleton wrote to the proprietors, requesting them to 
appoint such deputies as he knew to be most favorably dis- 
posed towards their government, and would most readily assist 
him in the execution of his office. Hence the interest of the 


proprietors and that of the people, were placed in opposite 
scales. The more rigorously the Governor exerted his author- 
ity, the more turbulent and riotous the people became. The 
little community was turned into a scene of confusion. 

Landgrave Colleton, mortified at the loss of power, was not 
a little puzzled in determining what step to take. Gentle 
means, he perceived, would be vain and ineffectual. One ex- 
pedient was suggested, which he and his council flattered 
themselves might induce the people, through fear, to return 
to his standard and support the person who alone had author- 
ity to punish mutiny and sedition. This was to proclaim 
martial law, and try to maintain by force of arms the propri- 
etary jurisdiction. Accordingly, without letting the people 
into'his secret, he caused the militia to be drawn up as if some 
danger had threatened the country, and publicly proclaimed 
martial law at their head. His design, when discovered, 
served only to exasperate. The members of assembly met, 
and taking this measure under their deliberation, resolved 
that it was an encroachment upon their liberties, and an un- 
warrantable exertion of power, at a time when the colony was 
in no danger. The Governor insisted on the articles of war, 
and tried to carry the martial law into execution ; but the dis- 
affection was too general to admit of such a remedy. In the 
year 1690, at a meeting of the representatives, a bill was 
iDrought in and passed for disabling landgrave James Colleton 
from holding any office or exercising any authority, civil or 
military, within the province. So exasperated were they 
against him that nothing less than banishment could appease 
them ; and therefore they gave notice to him that in a limited 
time he must depart from the colony. 

During these public commotions, Seth Sothell, pretending to 
be a proprietor by virtue of some regulations lately made in 
England, usurped the government of the colony. At first, 
the people seemed disposed to acknowledge his authority; 
but afterwards, finding him to be void of every principle of 
honor and honesty, they abandoned him. Such was the in- 
satiable avarice of this usurper, that his popularity was of 
small duration. Every restraint of common justice and equity 
was trampled upon by him, and oppression extended her iron 
rod over the distracted colony. The fair traders from Barba- 
does and Bermuda, were seized as pirates, by order of this 
Governor, and confined until such fees as he was pleased to 
enact, were paid. Bribes from felons and traitors, were ac- 
cepted to favor their escape. Plantations were forcibly taken 
into possession, upon pretences the most frivolous; planters 
were compelled to give bouds for large sums of money to 
procure from him liberty to remain in possession of their pro- 


perty. These, and many more acts of the like atrocious 
nature, were committed by this rapacious Governor during the 
short time of his administration. At length the people, weary 
of his impositions and extortions, agreed to take him by force 
and ship him off for England. Then he humbly begged of 
them liberty to remain in the country, promising to submit 
his conduct to the trial of the assembly at their iirst meeting. 
When the assembly met, thirteen different charges were 
brought against him, and all supported by the strongest evi- 
dence ; upon which, being found guilty, they compelled him 
to relinquish the government and country for ever. An ac- 
count of his infamous conduct was drawn up and sent to the 
proprietors, which filled them with astonishment and indigna- 
tion. He was ordered to England to answer the accusations 
brought against him, and was informed that his refusal would 
be taken as a further evidence and confirmation of his guilt. 
The law for disabling landgrave James Colleton from holding 
any authority, civil or military, in Carolina, was repealed ; 
and strict orders were sent out to the grand council to support 
the power and prerogative of the proprietors. But, to com- 
pose the minds of the people, they declared their detestation 
of such unwarrantable and wanton oppression, and protested 
that no Governor should ever be permitted to grow rich on 
their ruins. 

Hitherto South Carolina had been a scene of contention 
and misery. The fundamental constitution, which the pro- 
prietors thought the most excellent form of government upon 
earth, was disregarded. The Governors were either ill quali- 
fied for their office, or the instructions given them were inju- 
dicious. The inhabitants, far from living in friendship and 
harmony among themselves, had also been turbulent and 
ungovernable. The proprietary government was weak, un- 
stable, and little respected. It did not excite a sufficient inter- 
est for its own support The title of landgraves were more 
burthensome than profitable; especially as they were only joined 
with large tracts of land, which, from the want of laborers, lay 
uncultivated. The money arising from the sale of lands and 
the quit-rents, was inconsiderable — hard to be collected, and 
by no means equal to the support of government. The pro- 
prietors were unwilling to involve their English estates for the 
improvement of American property ; and, on the whole, their 
government was ill supported. 

Another source of controversy between the proprietors and 
the people, was the case of the French refugees. Many of 
these, exiled from their own country towards the close of the 
17th century, had settled in the province; particularly in 


Craven county.* They were an orderly, industrious, religious 
people. Several brought property with them which enabled 
them to buy land, and settle with greater advantages than 
many of the poorer English emigrants. While they were 
busy in clearing and cultivating their lands, the English set- 
tlers began to revive national antipathies against them and to 
consider the French as aliens and foreigners, legally entitled 
to none of the privileges and advantages of natural born sub- 
jects. The proprietors took part with the refugees, and in- 
structed their Governor, Philip Ludwell, who, in 1692, had 
been appointed the successor of Seth Sothell, to allow the 
French settled in Craven county, the same privileges and 
liberties with the English colonists ; but the people carried 
their jealousy so far, that at the next election for members to 
serve in the Assembly, Craven county, in which the French 
refugees lived, was not allowed a single representative. At 
this period, the Assembly of South Carolina consisted of 
twenty members, all chosen in Charlestown. 

A further cause of dissention respected the trial of pirates. 
The proprietors, mortified at the inefficacy of the laws in 
bringing these enemies of mankind to justice, instructed Gov- 
ernor Lee to change the form of drawing juries ; and required 
that all pirates should be tried and punished by the laws of 
England, made for the suppression of piracy ; but this inno- 
vation in the laws of the colony, was opposed by the people. 

There subsisted a constant struggle between the inhabitants 
and the officers of the proprietors. The former claimed great 
exemptions on account of their indigent circumstances. The 
latter were anxious to discharge the duties of their trust, and 
to comply with the instructions of their superiors. When 
quit-rents were demanded, some refused payment; others had 
nothing to offer. When actions were brought for their recov- 
ery, the planters murmured and were discontented at the 
terms of holding their lands. The fees of the Courts and 
Sheriffs were such that, in all actions of small value thev 
exceeded the debt. To remedy this inconvenience, the As- 
sembly made a law for empowering Justices of the Peace to 
hear, and finally to determine all causes hot exceeding forty 
shillings sterling. This' was agreeable to the people, but not 
to the officers of justice. Governor Ludwell proposed to the 
Assembly to consider of a new form of a deed for holding 

« South Carolina, soon after its first settlement, was divided into four counties 
Berkeley, Craven, Colleton and Carteret. Berkeley county filled the space round 
the capital; Craven to the northward; and Colleton contained Port' Roval and 
the islands in its vicinity, to the distance of thirty.miles. Carteret lay to the south- 


lands, by which he encroached on the prerogative of the pro- 
prietors, incurred their displeasure, and was soon after removed 
from the government. 

To find another man equally well qualified for the trust, 
was a matter of no small difficulty. Thomas Smith, being 
in high estimation for his wisdom and probity, was deemed 
to be the most proper person to succeed Ludwell. Accord- 
ingly, a patent was sent out creating him a landgrave;* and, 
together with it, a commission investing him with the gov- 
ernment of the colony. Mr. Ludwell returned to Virginia, 
happily relieved from a troublesome office ; and landgrave 
Smith, in the year 16 93, under all possible advantages, entered 
on it. He was previously acquainted with the state of the 
colony, and with the tempers and dispositions of the leading 
men in it. He knew that the interests of the proprietors, 
and the prosperity of the settlement, were inseparably con- 
nected. He was disposed to allow the people, struggling 
under many hardships, every indulgence consistent with the 
duties of his trust. 

The government of the province still remained in a con- 
fused and turbulent state. Complaints from every quarter 
were made to the Governor, who was neither able to quiet the 
minds of the people nor to afford them the relief they wanted. 
The French refugees were uneasy that there was no provincial 
law to secure their estates to the heirs of their body, or the 
next of kin ; and feared that on the demise of the present 
possessors, their lands would escheat to the proprietors and 
their children become beggars. The English colonists, also, 
perplexed the Goveriior with their complaints of hardships 
and grievances. At last, landgrave Smith wrote to the pro- 
prietors that he despaired of ever uniting the people in inter- 
est and affection — that he and many more, weary of the 
fluctuating state of public affairs, had resolved to leave the 
province ; and that he was conviiiced nothing would bring 
the settlers to a state of tranquility and harmony, unless they 

* This patent, dated May 13th, 1691, after reciting the authority of the propri 
etors to constitute titles and honors in the province; and to prefer men of merit, 
and to adorn such with titles and honors: and also stating the fundamental con- 
stitutions by which it was established — ^"Ihat there should be landgraves and 
cassiques, who should be perpetual and hereditary nobles and peers of the pro- 
vince ; and that Thomas Smith, a person of singular merit, would be very service- 
able by his great prudence and industry;" proceeds to constitute him landgrave, 
together with four baronies of 12,000 acres of land each : and it farther declares, 
*'that the said title and four baronies should for ever descend to his heirs, on 
paying an annual rent of a penny, lawful money of England, for each acre." 

If the proprietary government had continued, the title, honors, emoluments and 
lands derived from this patent, would now be possessed by Thomas Smith, son of 
Henry, who is the lineal heir of the original Thomas Smith. Such have been 
the changes which, in the course of a little more than a century, have taken place, 
that this is the only known instance in which any one oi Mr. Locke's Carolina 
nobility can trace back his pedigree to the Original founder. 


sent out one of the proprietors with full powers to redress 
grievances, and settle differences in their colony. 

The proprietors resolved to try the expedient landgrave 
Smith had suggested, and sent out John Archdale, a man of 
considerable knowledge and discretion — a quaker and a pro- 

The arrival of this pious man occasioned no small joy 
among all the settlers. Private animosities and civil discords 
seemed for a while to lie buried in oblivion. The Governor 
soon found three interesting matters demanded his particular 
attention: to restore harmony and peace among the colonists: 
to reconcile them to the jurisdiction and authority of the pro- 
prietors: and to regulate their policy and traffic with the 
Indians. Such was the national antipathy of the Enghsh 
settlers to the French refugees, that Archdale found their total 
exclusion from all connection with the legislature was abso- 
lutely necessary ; and therefore issued writs of elections di- 
recting them only to Berkeley and Colleton counties. Ten 
members for the one and ten for the other, all Englishmen, 
were accordingly chosen by the freemen of the same nation. 
At their meeting the Governor made a seasonable speech to 
both houses, acquainting them with the design of his appoint- 
ment — his regard for the colony — and great desire of con- 
tributing towards its peace and prosperity. They in return 
presented affectionate addresses to him, and entered on public 
business with temper and moderation. Governor Archdale, 
by his great discretion, settled matters of general moment to 
the satisfaction of all excepting the French refugees. The 
price of lands, and the form of conveyances, were fixed by 
law. Three years' rent was remitted to those who held land 
by grant, and four years to such as held them by survey with- 
out grant. It was agreed to take the arrears of quit-rents 
either in money or commodities at the option of the planters. 
Magistrates were appointed for hearing causes between the 
settlers and Indians, and finally determining all differences 
between them. Public roads were ordered to be made, and 
water passages cut for the more easy conveyance of produce 
to the market. Some former laws were altered, and such new 
statutes made as were judged requisite for the government and 
peace of the colony. Public affairs began to put on an agree- 
able aspect, and to promise fair towards the future welfare of 
the settlement. But as for the French refugees, the Governor 
could do no more than to recommend to the English free- 
holders to consider them in the most friendly point of hght 
and to treat them with lenity and moderation. 

No man could entertain more benevolent sentiments with 
respect to the savages, than Governor Archdale. To protect 


them against insults, and establish a fair trade and friendly 
intercourse with them, were regulations which humanity re- 
quired and sound policy dictated. But the rapacious spirit of 
individuals could be curbed by no authority. Many advan- 
tages were taken of the ignorance of Indians in the way of 
traffic. Several of the inhabitants, and some of those who 
held high offices, were too deeply concerned in the abomina- 
ble trade to be easily restrained from seizing their persons and 
selling them for slaves to the West India planters. 

Governor Archdale having finished his negotiations in Car- 
olina, made preparations for returning to Britain. Though 
the government, during his administration, had acquired con- 
siderable respect and stability, yet the differences among the 
people still remained. Former flames were rather smothered 
than extinguished, and were ready on the first stirring to break 
out and burn with increased violence. Before he embarked 
the Council presented to him an address, to be transmitted to 
the proprietors, expressing "the deep sense they had of their 
Lordship's paternal care for the colony, in the appointment of 
a man of such abilities and integrity to the government, who 
had been so happily instrumental in establishing its peace and 
security." They observed, " that they had now no contending 
factions nor clashing interests among the people, excepting 
what respected the French refugees ; who were unhappy at 
their not being allowed all the privileges and liberties of Eng- 
lish subjects, particularly those of sitting in assembly and 
voting at the election of its members, which could not be 
granted them without losing the affections of the Enghsh 
settlers and involving the colony in civil broils — that Governor 
Archdale, by the advice of his council, chose rather to refuse 
them these privileges than disoblige the bulk of the English 
settlers — that by his wise conduct they hoped all misunder- 
standings between their Lordships and the colonists were 
happily removed — that they would for the future cheerfully 
concur with them in every measure for the speedy population 
and improvement of the country — that they Avere now levy- 
ing money for building fortifications to defend the province 
against foreign attacks, and that they would strive to maintain 
harmony and peace among themselves." Governor Arch- 
dale received this address with peculiar satisfaction, and 
promised to present it to the proprietors. 

After his arrival in England he laid this address, together 
with a state of the country and the regulations he had estab- 
lished in it, before the proprietors; and showed them the 
necessity of abolishing many articles in the constitutions, and 
framing a new plan of government. Accordingly they began 
to compile new constitutions from his information. Forty- 


one different articles were drawn up, and sent out, by Robert 
Daniel, for the better government of the colony. But when 
Governor Joseph Blake, successor of Archdale, laid these new 
laws before the Assembly for their assent and approbation, 
they treated them as they had done the former constitutions; 
and instead of taking them under deliberation laid them 

The national antipathies against the French refugees in 
process of time began to abate. In common with others, they 
had defied the danger of the desert and given ample proofs 
of their fidelity to the proprietors, and their zeal for the suc- 
cess of the colony. They had cleared little spots of land for 
raising the necessaries of life, and in some measure surmounted 
the difficulties of the first state of colonization. At this favor- 
able juncture the refugees, by the advice of the Governor and 
other friends, petitioned the legislature to be incorporated 
with the freemen of the colony and allowed the same privi- 
leges, and liberties, with those born of English parents. Ac- 
cordingly an act passed in 1696 for making all aliens, themi 
inhabitants, free — for enabling them to hold lands, and to 
claim the same as heirs to their ancestors, provided they either 
had petitioned, or should within three month's petition. Gov- 
ernor Blake for these privileges and take the oath of allegi- 
ance to King William. This same law conferred liberty of 
conscience on all Christians, with the exception of papists. 
With these conditions the refugees, who were all Protestants, 
joyfully complied. The French and English settlers being 
made equal in rights, became united in interest and affection, 
and have ever since lived together in peace and harmony. 

This cause of domestic discord was scarcely done away, 
when another began to operate. In the year 1700 a new 
source of contention broke out between the upper and lower 
houses of Assembly. Of the latter Nicholas Trott was made 
Speaker, and warmly espoused the cause of the people, in 
opposition to the interest of the proprietors. The Governor 
and Council claimed the privilege of nominating public offi- 
cers, particularly a Receiver General, until the pleasure 
of the proprietors was known. The Assembly, on the other 
hand, insisted that it belonged to them. This occasioned 
much altercation, and several messages between the two 
houses. However, the upper house appointed their maa 
The lower house resolved that the person appointed by them 
was no Public Receiver, and that whoever should presume to 
pay money to him as such should be deemed an enemy to 
the country. Trott denied that they could be called an upper 
house, as they differed in the most essential circumstances, 
from the House of Lords in England ; and therefore inducecl 


the Assembly to call them the proprietors' deputies, a,nd to 
treat them with indignity and contempt, by limiting them to 
a day to pass their bills and an hour to answer their mes- 
sages. At that time Trott was eager in the pursuit of popu- 
larity ; and by his uncommon abilities and address succeeded 
so far, that no man had equally engrossed the public favor 
and esteem, or carried matters with so high a hand in oppo- 
sition to the proprietary counsellors. 

In the fourteen years which followed Governor Archdale's re- 
turn to England, or from 1696 to 1710, there were four Gov- 
ernors ; Joseph Blake, James Moore, Sir Nathaniel Johnson, and 
Edward Tynte. The principal events, in this period, were 
an unsuccessful invasion of St. Augustine by the Carolinians, 
and a successful defence of the province against an attack of 
the French and Spaniards; which shall be more particularly 
explained in their proper places. 

In Governor Johnson's administration, which lasted from 
1702 to 1709, parties in Church and State ran high, and there 
were great commotions among the people ; but on the death 
of Governor Tynte, in 1710, a civil war was on the point of 
breaking out. When Tynte died, there remained only three 
deputies of the Lords proprietors. Robert Gibbes, one of 
these three, was chosen and proclaimed Governor ; but by the 
sudden death of Mr. Turbevil, one of the three deputies, who 
in the morning of the election day had voted for Colonel 
Broughton, another of the three deputies, but upon adjourn- 
ment to the afternoon changed his mind and voted for Robert 
Gibbes, it was discovered that Robert Gibbes had obtained 
the said second vote of Turbevil by bribery. Colonel 
Broughton laid claim to the government, alleging Turbevil's 
primary and uncorrupted vote in his favor. Gibbes insisted 
on his right,* as having added his own vote to Turbevil's and 
thereby obtained a majority ; and in consequence thereof was 
proclaimed Governor, and quietly settled in the administration. 
Each persisted in his claim. Many sided with Broughton, 
but more with Mr. Gibbes. Broughton drew together a 
number of armed men at his plantation, and proceeded to 
Charlestown. Gibbes having intelligence thereof, caused a 
general alarm to be fired and the militia to be raised. At the 
approach of Broughton's party to the walls and gates of 
Charlestown, Gibbes ordered the drawbridge, standing near 
the intersection of Broad and Meeting streets, to be hauled 
up. After a short parley, Broughton's party asked admit- 

*These particulars relative to the contest between Gibbes and Broughton for 
the office of Governor are stated on the authority of an old manuscript in the hand- 
writing of the venerable Thomas Lamboll, a native of South Carolina, who died 
in the year 1775, upwards of 80 years old. 


tance; Gibbes from within the walls inquired why they 
came armed in such a number, and if they would own 
him for their Governor ? They answered, that they heard 
there was an alarm and were come to make their appearance 
in Charlestovvn ; but would not own him, the said Gibbes, to 
be their Govervor. He of course denied them entrance; 
whereupon many of them gallopped round the walls towards 
Craven's bastion, to get entrance there ; but being prevented 
they soon returned to the drawbridge. By this time some of 
the inhabitants of the town, and many sailors appearing there 
in favor of Broughton, they proceeded to force a passage and 
let down the drawbridge. Gibbes' party opposed, but were 
not allowed to fire upon them. After blows and wounds 
were given and received, the sailors and men of Broughton's 
party prevailed so far as to lower down the drawbridge over 
which they entered and proceeded to the watch-house in 
Broad street. There the two town companies of militia were 
posted under arms and with colors flying. When Brough- 
ton's party came near they halted, and one of them drew a 
paper out of his pocket, and began to read ; but could not be 
heard, because of the noise made by the drums of the militia. 
Being balked, they marched towards Granville's bastion, and 
were escorted by the seamen on foot who were ready for any 
mischief As they passed the front of the militia, whose 
guns were presented and cocked, one of the sailors catching 
at the ensign, tore it off the staff. On this provocation some 
of the militia, without any orders, fired their pieces, but no- 
body was hurt. Captain Brewton resolutely drew his sword, 
went up to the sailor, who had committed the outrage, and 
demanded the torn ensign. Captain Evans, a considerable 
man of Broughton's party, alighted and obliged the sailor to 
return it. Broughton's party continued their march for some 
time, and then proclaimed Broughton Governor. After huz- 
zaing, they approached the fort gate, and made a show of 
forcing it ; but observing Captain Pawley with his pistol cocked, 
and many other gentlemen with their guns presented and all 
forbiding them at their peril to attempt the gate, they retired 
to a tavern on the bay ; before which they first caused their 
written paper or proclamation to be again read, and then dis- 
mounted. After much altercation, many reciprocal messages 
and answers, aud the mediation of several peace-makers, 
the controversy was referred to the decision of the Lords 
proprietors ; and it was agreed that Colonel Gibbes should 
continue in the administration of government, until they de- 
termined which of the two should be obeyed as Governor. 
Their determination was in favor of neither. The proprietors 
appointed Charles Craven, who then held their commission 


as Secretary, to be Governor. He was proclaimed in form, 
and took upon him the administration. During his govern- 
ment, the province was involved in two sharp contests with 
the Indians. One in North Carolina with the Tuscaroras, and 
another much more distressing with the Yaniassees, which 
were ably and successfully conducted by the Governor, as 
shall be related in its proper place. On his departure for 
England, in 1716, he appointed Robert Daniel, Deputy Gov- 
ernor. In the year following, Robert Johnson, son of Sir 
Nathaniel Johnson, succeeded to the office of Governor. He 
was the last who held that office under the authority of the 



The Revolution in 1719, from Proprietary to Royal Gov- 

In the administration of Robert Johnson, a revolution from 
proprietary to a regal system of government was accom- 
plished. The explosion took place in the year 1719; but the 
train of events which occasioned it was of prior origin. From 
the first settlement of the province, short had been the inter- 
vals of contention between the proprietors and the people; 
but from the year 1715, various causes contributed to widen 
the breach and destroy all confidence between them. One in 
particular, which had a decided influence, resulted from the 
war of 1715, between South Carolina and the Yamassee In- 
dians. While this hard struggle was pending, the legislature 
made appHcation to the proprietors for their paternal help; 
but, being doubtful whether they would be inclined to involve 
their English estates in debt for supporting their property in 
Carohna, they instructed their agent, in case of failure with 
them, to apply to the King for relief. The merchants entered 
cordially into the measure for making application to the King, 
and perceived at once the many advantages which would 
accrue to them from being taken under the immediate care 
and protection of the crown. It was alleged that ships of war 
would soon clear the coast of sea robbers, and give free scope 
to trade and navigation — that forces by land would over-awe 
the warlike Indians — prevent their inroads, and procure for 


the inhabitants peace and security. The people in general, 
were dissatisfied with living under a government unable to 
protect them. They therefore were very unanimous in the 
proposed application to the crown for royal protection. 

About the middle of the year 1715 the agent for Carolina 
waited on the proprietors, with a representation of the ca- 
lamities under which their colony labored from the ravages of 
Indians and the depredations of pirates. He acquainted them 
that the Yamassees, by the influence of Spanish emissaries, 
had claimed the whole country as their ancient possession; 
and had conspired with many other tribes to assert their right 
by force of arms, and therefore urged the necessity of sending 
immediate relief to the colony. But not being satisfied with 
their answer, he petitioned the house of commons in behalf 
of the distressed Carolinians. The commons addressed the 
King, praying for his interposition and immediate assistance. 
The King referred the matter to the lords commissioners of 
trade and plantations. The lords of trade made an objection 
that the province of Carolina was one of the proprietary gov- 
ernments; and were of opinion, that if the nation should be 
at the expense of piotecting it, the government thereof ought 
to be vested in the crown. Upon which Lord Carteret wrote 
a letter to the following effiect: "We, the proprietors of 
Carolina, are utterly unable to afford our colony suitable 
assistance in this conjuncture ; and, unless his majesty will 
graciously please to interpose, we can foresee nothing but the 
utter destruction of his majesty's faithful subjects in those 
parts." The lords of trade asked Lord Carteret, "What sum 
might be necessary for that service, and whether the govern- 
ment of the colony should not devolve on the crown if Great 
Britain should agree to bear the expense of its defence?'' To 
v/hich Lord Carteret replied: "The proprietors submitted to 
his majesty what sum of money he should be pleased to grant 
for their assistance ; and in case the money advanced for this 
purpose should not in a reasonable time be repaid, they 
humbly conceived that then his majesty would have an equi- 
table right to take the government under his immediate care 
and protection.'' 

The same year a bill was brought into the House of Com- 
mons in England, for the better regulation of the charter and 
proprietary governments in America; the chief design of 
which was to reduce all charter and proprietary governments 
into regal ones. Men conversant in the history of past ages, 
particularly in that of the rise and progress of different States, 
had long foreseen the rapid increase of American colonies; 
and wisely judged that it would be for the interest of the 
kingdom to purchase them for the crown as soon as possible. 


One of the ostensible grounds on which the proprietors had 
obtained their charter, was the prospect of their propagating 
the Gospel among the Indians. Their total neglect of this 
duty, contrasted with the active policy of the Spaniards at 
St Augustine, was considered by the inhabitants as a pro- 
curing cause of all their sufferings from the Yamassee war. 
To answer the public exigences growing out of that war, large 
emissions of paper money were deemed indispensable. While 
struggling amidst these hardships, the merchants of London 
complained to the proprietors of the increase of paper money 
as injurious to trade. In consequence of which they directed 
the Governor to reduce it. These several matters formed a 
circle of embarrassment from which the inhabitants saw no 
prospect of extrication, but from throwing themselves on the 
crown, for protection. They referred their war with the In- 
dians to the neglect of the proprietors in conciliating their 
affections. The proprietors, when called upon to assist in re- 
pelling the attacks made by these neglected Indians, declared 
themselves incompetent. On application for royal aid, they 
were told by ministers that it was unreasonable to expect it 
while they were the tenants of the proprietors. Disappointed of 
aid from both, they had made exertions to defend themselves ; 
but the proprietary Governor, agreeably to his instructions, 
thwarted their endeavors to equalize and lessen the expenses 
of the war by an emission of paper money. A dissatisfaction 
with the proprietors, and an eagerness to be under the imme- 
diate protection of the crown, became universal. 

This was increased from another source. The Yamassees 
being expelled from Indian land, the Assembly passed two 
Acts to appropriate these lands gained by conquest, for 
the use and encouragement of such of his Majesty's sub- 
jects as should come over and settle upon them. Extracts 
of these two Acts being published in England, and Ireland, 
five hundred persons from Ireland transported themselves to 
Carolina to take the benefit of them. But the whole project 
was frustrated by the proprietors, who claimed these lands as 
their property and insisted on the right of disposing of them 
as they thought fit. Not long afterwards, to the litter ruin of 
the Irish emigrants, and in breach of the provincial faith, 
these Indian lands were surveyed by order of the proprietors 
for their own use, and laid out in large baronies. By this 
harsh usage the old settlers, having lost the protection of the 
new comers, deserted their plantation and left the frontier 
open to the enemy. Many of the unfortunate Irish emigrants, 
having spent the little money they brought with them, were 
reduced to misery and perished. The remainder removed to 
the northern colonies. 


The struggle between the proprietors and possessors of the 
soil became daily more serious. The provincial Assembly 
passed about this time some very popular laws. One for 
the better regulation of tbe Indian ' trade, by which Com- 
missioners were nominated to carry it on and to apply the 
profit arising from it to the public benefit and defence. Another 
was for regulating elections; by which it was enacted "that 
every parish should send a certain number of representatives, 
not exceeding thirty-six in the whole, and that they should 
be ballotted for at the different parish churches." This, 
though much more convenient to the settlers than their former 
custom of electing all the members in Charlestown, was disa- 
greeable to some members of the Council who perceived its 
tendency to lessen their influence at elections. Chief Justice 
Trott and William Rhett, Receiver General, men of great abil- 
ities and influence, opposed both these bills. Though they 
could not prevent their passing in Carolina, they had influence 
enough with the proprietors to send them back repealed. The 
colonists were exasperated; and in severe language censured 
the proprietors as tyrannical, regardless of the convenience of 
the inhabitants, and unfeeling for their distresses. 

The Yamassee Indians, smarting under their recent defeat 
as shall be hereafter related, were sanguinary and vindictive. 
Being supplied with arms and ammunition from the Span- 
iards, they were so troublesome as to make it necessary for 
the Assembly to maintain a company of Rangers to protect 
their frontier settlers. Presents were necessary to preserve 
the friendship of other Indian tribes. Three forts were also 
erected and garrisoned for the defence, and at the cost of the 
province. These public expenses consumed the fruits of the 
planter's industry. The law appropriating the profits of the 
Indian trade, for the public protection, had been repealed by 
the proprietors. Public credit was at so low an ebb, that no 
man was willing to trust his money in the provincial treasury. 
None would risk their lives in defence of the colony without 
pay; and the province, oppressed with a load of debt, was 
utterly unable to furnish the necessary supplies. The people 
complained of the insufliciency of that government which 
could not protect them, and at the same time prevented the 
hiterposition of the crown for their relief Governor Daniel 
joined them in their complaints ; and every one seemed ar- 
dently to wish for those "advantages, which other colonies 
enjoyed under the immediate care and protection of a power- 
ful sovereign. 

Robert Johnson, who, in 1717, succeeded Robert Daniel as 
Governor, had instructions to reduce the paper currency. He 
recommended to the Assembly to consider of ways and 


means for sinking it. The Indian war had occasioned a 
scarcity of provisions. Large emissions of paper money 
sunk its value. Both contributed to raise the price of country 
commodities. The merchants and money lenders were losers 
by these bills of credit, and the planters, who were generally 
in debt, gained by them. Hence great debates about paper 
money arose in the Assembly, between the planting and mer- 
cantile interests. The Governor had so much influence as to 
prevail with the Assembly to pass a law for sinking and pay- 
ing otf their bills of credit in three years, by a tax on lands 
and negroes. Their act for that purpose gave great satisfac- 
tion both to the proprietors and people concerned in trade. 

This compliance of the Assembly with the Governor's in- 
structions, gave him some faint prospect of reconciling them 
by degrees to the supreme jurisdiction of the proprietors; but 
his hopes were of short duration. The planters, finding the 
tax act burdensome, began to complain, and to contrive ways 
and means for eluding it, by stamping more bills of credit. 
The proprietors, having information of this, and also of a 
design formed by the Assembly to set a price on country 
commodities, and make them at such a price a good tender in 
law for the payment of all debts, enjoined their Governor not 
to give his assent to any bill framed by the Assembly, nor to 
render it of any force in the Colony before a copy thereof 
should be laid before them. About the same time the King, 
by his order in council, signified to the proprietors that they 
should repeal an act passed in Carolina of pernicious conse- 
quence to the trade of the mother country, by which " a duty 
of ten per cent, was laid on all goods of British manufacture 
imported into that province." Accordingly, this act, together 
with that "for regulating elections," and another "for declar- 
ing the right of the Assembly to nominate a public receiver," 
were all repealed and sent to Governor Johnson in a letter, 
which enjoined him instantly to dissolve the Assembly and 
call another to be chosen in Charlestown, according to the 
ancient usage of the province. The proprietors considered 
themselves as possessing not only power to put a negative on 
aU laws made in the Colony, but also to repeal such as they 
deemed pernicious. 

Governor Johnson, sensible of the evil consequences that 
would attend the immediate execution of these orders, con- 
vened his council to take their advice on what was most 
proper to be done. When he communicated his orders and 
instructions from England, the majority of the council were 
astonished. But as the Assembly were at that time deliber- 
ating on the means of paying the provincial debt, it was 
agreed to postpone the dissolution of the house until the busi- 


ness before them should be finished. As the repeal of the 
duty law was occasioned by an order from the King in coun- 
cil, they resolved to acquaint the Assembly immediately with 
the royal displeasure at that clause of the law which laid an 
impost duty on all goods manufactured in Great Britain, 
and to advise them to make a new act, leaving out the clause 
which had given otfence. Though great pains were taken to 
conceal the Governor's instructions, yet they were divulged, 
and excited violent resentments. The Assembly entered into 
a warm debate about the proprietors' right of repealing laws 
passed with the assent of their deputies. Many alleged that 
the deputation given to them was like a power of attorney 
sent to persons at a distance, authorizing them to act in their 
stead, and insisted that, according to the charter, they were 
bound by their assent to acts as much as if the proprietors 
themselves had been present and confirmed them. 

Chief Justice Trott was suspected of holding a private cor- 
respondence with the proprietors, to the prejudice of the 
Carolinians. On that and several grounds he was the object 
of their hatred and resentment. Richard Allein Whitaker, 
and other practitioners of the law, charged him with base and 
iniquitous practices. No less than thirty-one articles of com- 
plaint against him were presented to the Assembly, setting 
forth, among. other things, "that he had contrived many ways 
to multiply and increase his fees; that he had contrived a fee 
for continuing causes from one term to another, and put off 
the hearing of them for years ; that he took upon him to give 
advice in causes depending in his courts, and not only acted 
as counsellor in these cases, but had drawn deeds between 
party and party, some of which had been contested before 
him as Chief Justice, and in determining of which he had 
shown great partiality ; and lastly, complaining that the whole 
judicial power of the province was lodged in his hands, he 
being at the same time sole Judge of the Court of Common 
Pleas, King's Bench and Vice Admiralty, so that no prohibi- 
tion could be lodged against the proceedings of these courts, 
otherwise than by his granting one against himself He was, 
at the same time, a member of the council, and of conse- 
quence a Judge of the Court of Chancery. 

These articles of complaint were well grounded, and the 
facts alleged were supported by strong evidence before the 
Assembly. But as the Judge held his commission from the 
proprietors, he denied that he was accountable to the Assem- 
bly for any part of his judicial conduct, and declared that he 
would answer no where but in England. The Assembly, 
however, sent a message to the Governor and Council, re- 
questing that they would concur in representing his conduct 


to the proprietors ; and in praying them either to remove him 
from his seat in the courts of justice, or at least to confine him 
exclusively to one jurisdiction ; and to grant to the people a 
right of appealing from his judgments. The Governor 
and Council, convinced of the maladministration of the 
Judge, agreed to join the Commons in their representation. 
But they thought it most prudent and respectful to send one 
of their counsellors to England with their memorial. Francis 
Yonge, a man of considerable abilities, who had been present 
at all their debates, was pitched upon as well qualified for 
giving their lordships a faithful account of the whole matter. 
Accordingly he sailed for England, and arrived in London 
early in the year 1719. 

Soon after his arrival he waited on Lord Carteret, the pala- 
tine; but his lordship referred him to the other proprietors for 
an answer to his representation. When they met, Yonge de- 
livered to them a letter from Governor Johnson — the articles 
of complaint against Chief Justice Trott — and the joint ad- 
dress of the Governor, Council, and Assembly, praying to 
have him removed entirely from the bench, or confined to a 
single jurisdiction. 

This memorial was far from being agreeable to the pro- 
prietors ; some of them inferred from it that the people were 
industrious in searching for causes of dissatisfaction, with 
a view to shake the proprietary authority. Others had re- 
ceived letters from Trott, which intimated that Yonge, though 
an officer of the proprietors, had assisted the people in form- 
ing plausible pretences for that purpose. For three months 
Yonge attended the palatine's court, to accomplish the ends 
of his appointment. After all he was given to understand, 
that the business on which he came was extremely disa- 
greeable to them — that the trouble he had taken, and the 
otfice he had accepted as agent for the people, were inconsist- 
ent with his duty as one of the deputies bound to act in 
conformity to their instructions. They declared their displea- 
sure with the members of the Council who had joined the 
lower house in their complaints against Trott — removed them 
from the board — appointed others in their place — and increased 
the number of members from seven to twelve. They told 
Yonge that he also would have been deprived of his seat but 
for the high respect they had for Lord Carteret, -the absent 
palatine, whose deputy he was. With respect to Chief Jus- 
tice Trott, they had too much confidence in his fidelity and ca- 
pacity to remove him from his office. On the contrary, they sent 
him a letter thanking him for his excellent speech in defence 
of their right of repealing all laws made in the colony, to- 
gether with a copy of the articles of complaint against him. 
At the same time they informed him that it was their opinion, 


and order, that he should withdraw from the Council-board 
whenever appeals from his judgments in the inferior courts 
were brought before the Governor and Council as a Court of 

Such was the result of Yonge's negotiation in Britain. 
The proprietors were displeased with him, and also with 
Governor Johnson, for joining the other branches of the 
Legislature in their late representation. By the return of 
Yonge they sent out their repeal of the late popular acts of 
the Legislature, their list of new counsellors, with positive 
orders to the Governor to publish immediately the repeal of 
the late popular laws — to convene the new Counsellors for the 
dispatch of business — to dissolve the Assembly chosen ac- 
cording to the late act, and to cause a new Assembly to be 
elected according to the old act which required all the electors 
to meet and vote in Charlestown. 

Governor Johnson on receiving these new orders and in- 
structions, instantly foresaw the difficulty of executing them. 
Determined, however to comply, he summoned his Council of 
twelve, whom the proprietors had lately nominated. These 
were William Bull, Ralph Izard, Nicholas Trott, Charles Hart, 
Samuel Wragg, Benjamin de la Consiliere, Peter St. Julian, 
William Gibbon, Hugh Butler, Francis Yonge, Jacob Satuf, 
and Jonathan Skrine. Some of these accepted the appoint- 
ment, but others refused to serve. Alexander Skene, Thomas 
Broughton, and James Kinloch, members of the former 
board, being now left out of the new list of counsellors, were 
disgusted and joined the people. The present Assembly was 
dissolved; and writs were issued for electing another in Charles- 
town, according to the ancient usage of the province. The 
general duty act, from the proceeds of which all public debts 
were defrayed, and the act respecting the freedom of election 
were repealed. In consequence of which, public credit was 
destroyed, and the Colonists were obliged to have recourse to 
the old inconvenient manner of elections in Charlestown. 
The act declaring the right of the Commons to nominate 
a Public Receiver was also annulled, and declared to be 
contrary to the usage of Great Britain. The Governor had in- 
structions to refuse his assent to all laws respecting the trade 
and shipping of Great Britain, which any future Assembly 
might pass, until they were first approved by the proprietors. 
The provincial debts incurred by the Indian war, and the ex- 
pedition against pirates not only remained unpaid, but no 
more bills of credit were allowed to be stamped for answering 
the public demands. The Colonists considered the new 
Council of twelve, instead of the old one of seven, as an in- 
novation in the proprietary government ; exceeding the char- 
tered power granted their lordships, and subjecting them to a 


jurisdiction tbreign to the constitution of the province. The 
complaints of the whole Legislature against Chief Justice 
Trott were not only disregarded, but he was privately ca- 
ressed and publicly applauded. These grievances were ren- 
dered the more intolerable, from the circumstance that the 
suffering colonists could indulge no hopes of redress under 
the existing system of proprietary government. 

It may be thought somewhat astonishing, that the proprie- 
tors should have persisted in measures so disagreeable and 
so manifestly subversive of their authority. Many were the 
hardships from the climate, and the danger from savages, 
with which the colonists had to struggle; yet their landlords, 
instead of rendering their circumstances easy and comfortable, 
seemed rather bent on doubling their distresses. The people 
could no longer regard them as indulgent fathers, but as 
tyrannical legislators that imposed more on them than they 
were able to bear. It was the duty of the proprietors to listen 
to their complaints, and redress their grievances. It was their 
interest to consult the internal security and population of their 
colony. But perhaps the troubles and miseries suffered by 
the colonists, ought to be ascribed to their lordships' shameful 
inattention rather than to their tyrannical disposition. Lord 
Carteret, the palatine, held high offices of trust under the 
crown, which required all his time and care. Some of the 
proprietors were minors, others possessed estates in England, 
the improvement of which engrossed their attention. Having 
reaped little or nothing from their American possessions, and 
finding them every year becoming ijiore troublesome and 
expensive, they trusted the affairs of their colony too much 
to a clerk or secretary who was no ways interested in their 
prosperity. Chief Justice Trott, in whose integrity and fidelity 
the proprietors placed unlimited confidence, held of them 
many offices of trust and emolument. Being dependent on 
them for the tenure of his office, and the amount and payment 
of his salary, he strongly supported their power and pre- 
rogative. The proprietors depended on his influence and 
eloquence, to make their favorite measures go down with the 
people. Trott vindicated their authority in gratitude for 
favors received, and in the expectation of receiving more. A 
reciprocal chain of dependence and obligation was formed 
between them. This interested policy was carried too far. 
The chain broke. A new order of things took place. In 
consequence of which Trott's influence was completely 
destroyed, and the power of the proprietors forever an- 

About this time, a rupture having taken place between the 
courts of Great Britain and Spain, a project for attacking 


South Carolina and the Island of Providence was formed at 
the Havanna. Governor Johnson having received advice 
from England of this design, resolved to put the Province in 
a posture of defence. For this purpose he summoned a 
meeting of Council, and of such members of Assembly as 
were in town, to inform them of the intelligence he had 
received and to desire their advice and assistance in case of 
any sudden emergency. He told them of the shattered con- 
dition of the fortifications, and urged the necessity of speedy 
reparations. To meet the expense he proposed a voluntary 
subscription, and headed it with his own signature to a large 
amount as an example to others. The members of Assembly 
replied, "that a subscription was needless, as the income of 
the duties would be sufficient to answer the purpose intended." 
The Governor objected, "that the duty law had been repealed, 
and no other yet framed in its place." To which the 
members of Assembly answered, "they had resolved to pay 
no regard to these repeals, and that the public receiver had 
orders from them to sue every man that should refuse to pay 
as that law directed." Chief Justice Trott told them, "if 
any action or suit should be brought into his courts on that 
law, he would give judgment for the defendant." The con- 
test between the parties became warm, and the conference 
broke up before anything was determined upon for the public 
safety. The memlaers of Assembly resolved to hazard the 
loss of the Province to the Spaniards, rather than yield to the 
Council and acknowledge the right of the proprietors to repeal 
laws which had been regularly passed. 

Governor Johnson judging it prudent to be always in the 
best posture of defence, called a meeting of the field officers 
of the militia, ordered them to review their regiments, and 
fixed a place of general rendezvous. At this meeting they 
received their orders with their usual submission, and called 
together the different regiments on pretence of training the 
men. But before this time the members chosen to serve in 
Assembly, though they had not met in their usual and regular 
way at Charlestown, had nevertheless held several private 
meetings in the country to concert measures for revolting 
from their allegiance. They had drawn up an association 
for uniting the whole Province in opposition to the proprietary 
government. This was proposed to the people at the public 
meeting of the militia, as an opportunity the most favorable 
for procuring a general subscription. The people oppressed 
and discontented, eagerly embraced the proposal; and almost 
to a man subscribed this bond of union, in which they 
promised to stand by each other in defence of their rights, 
against the tyranny of the proprietors and their officers. The 

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jaq}0 {BiaAas puB apj •}uarauiaAo§ jiaq} jo ouqBj Suua}}0} 
aq} uALop §uq|nd ui aApoB puB sno|i39z auiBoaq aq 'sjo}aTjd 
-Old aq} Aq pasn qi sb jpsuitq Suiiapisuog "sjaotgo jtaio aq} 
asoddo 0} asodind uo uasoqo sbav qoiqAV 'if^quiassy A\au siq} 
JO jaqraaiu •b pa}oaia sbav 'jiounoQ aq} raojj papnpxa A|a}B[ 
'auajjs japuBxa^y -asnoq aq} o}ui ubiu auo Suiiq }on p]noo 
Aaq} }Bq} iB|ndodun os aaaAv 'aouangui aAisua}xa pBq Aiiaui 
-joj oqAi '}}aqa puB }}OJj^ 'uAvo}saiaBqo ui uoi}oa|a aq} }y 

•§ui3 aq} JO uoi}oa}ojd aq} japun saAjasuiaq} Suijq p|noqs 
Aaq} |i}un paaoojd 0} pauiuija}ap 'uiaq} }joddns o} aidoad 
aq} aonpui o} sb jbj os auoS puB 'jjOAaj o} uoi}U]osaj Jiaq} 
pauijoj SuiABq 'ijquiassy jo sjaqmam aqj^ ■}{ ui pajjnouoo 
pBq s}UB}iqBqui aq} qB AjJBau sjBa s^ioujaAof) aq} paqoBai 
}i ajojaq }Bq} 'ioajoas qons qjiAv pantjoj sbav AoBiapajuoo 

X^ "eiil -lo jJoixnioAaH 


respect, as an insult; but especially the advice contained 
therein, which he deemed derogatory both to his integrity and 
fidelity. The letter, however, served to give him notice of 
the association and the resolution of the people which it was 
his duty to defeat For this purpose he hastened to town, 
summoned his Council — informed them of the association, 
and required their advice and assistance about the most 
effectual methods of breaking it up and supporting the pro- 
prietary government. The Council, unable to determine what 
was best to be done, advised the Governor to take no present 
notice of the proceedings, but to wait events. 

In the meantime, the members of Assembly were using 
their utmost diligence among the people to keep them firm to 
their purpose, having got almost every person, except the 
officers and particular friends of the proprietors, to sign the 
association. All agreed to support whatever their representa- 
tives should do for disengaging the colony from the yoke of 
the proprietors, and putting it under the government of the 
King. Having thus fortified themselves by the union of the 
inhabitants, the Assembly met to take bolder and more decisive 
steps. Being apprehensive that the Governor would immedi- 
ately dissolve them, they instantly came to the following reso- 
lutions. "Firstly: that the several laws* pretended to be 
repealed are still in force, and could not be repealed but by 
the General Assembly of the province : and that all public 
officers and others do pay due regard to the same accordingly. 
Secondly: that the writs whereby the present representatives 
were elected, are illegal, because they are signed by such a 
Council as the proprietors have not a power to appoint; for 
this Council consists of a greater number of members than 
that of the proprietors, which is contrary to the design and 
original intent of their charter. Thirdly: that the represen- 
tatives cannot act as an Assembly, but as a convention dele- 
gated by the people to prevent the utter ruin of the province 
till His Majesty's pleasure be known." And lastly: "that 
the lords proprietors have by such proceedings unhinged the 
frame of their government and forfeited their rights to the 
same — and that an address be prepared to desire Governor 
Johnson to take the government upon him in the King's 
name — and to continue the administration thereof until his 
majesty's pleasure be known." 

* The titles of the laws repealed by the proprietors, and adhered to by the Car- 
olinians as unrepealed, were — ^ 

1st. An act for declaring the rights of the House of Commons, for the time 
being- to nominate a public receiver. 

2d. An act entitled an act for laying an impost on negroes, liquors, and other 
goods and merchandize, t^:c. 

3d. An act entitled an act to ascertain the form of electing members to represent 
the inhabitants ia general assembly. 


Agreeably to the last resolution, an address was drawn up 
and signed by Arthur Middleton, as President, and twenty- 
two members of the convention, to be presented to Johnson. 
In the meantime, the Governor sent a message to the house, 
acquainting them that he was ready, with his council, to re- 
ceive and order them to choose a speaker. They came to the 
upper house in a body, and Arthur Middleton addressed him 
in the following words : " I am ordered by the representatives 
of the people, here present, to tell you that according to your 
honor's order, we are come to wait on you. I am further 
ordered to acquaint you that we own your honor as our Gov- 
ernor, you being approved by the King; and as there was 
once in this province a legal council representing the propri- 
etors as their deputies, which constitution, being now altered, 
we do not look on the gentlemen present to be a legal Coun- 
cil; so I am ordered to tell you that the representatives of the 
people disown them as such, and will not act with them on 
any account." 

The Governor and council, struck with astonishment at the 
spirit of the convention, and suspecting that they were sup- 
ported by the people, were greatly puzzled while deliberating 
on the measures they should take to recall them to the obe- 
dience of legal authority. Some were for opposing violence 
to violence ; and thought the best way of bringing them back to 
their allegiance, would be to terrify them with threats and 
confiscations. Others were of opinion that the defection was 
too general to admit of such a remedy, and that mild expos- 
tulations were more proper; and if such gentle means failed, 
the Governor might then dissolve them and put an end to 
the dispitte. But on the other hand, dangers hung over the 
country ; and the only fund for repairing the fortifications 
being lost by the repeal of the general act duty, it was neces- 
sary that money should be provided by some new law for 
public purposes. If the Governor dissolved the house, how 
could the province be put in a posture of defence against a 
Spanish invasion^with which it was threatened ? If he should 
suffer them to sit while they had resolved that the proprietors 
had fortified their right to the government, and refused on any 
account to act with his council, he might be chargeable with 
a breach of his trust. The result of their deliberations was a 
message from the Governor and Council, desiring a conference 
with the House of Assembly. To which they returned for 
answer, that "they would not receive any message or paper 
from the Governor, in conjunction with the gentlemen he was 
pleased to call his Council." Finding them inflexible, and 
resolute, the Governor was obliged to give way to the current ; 


and therefore, in two days afterwards, sent for them in his 
own name, and delivered to them a long and elaborate speech, 
and furnished them with a written copy of it. In this he 
soothed the popular leaders — expostulated and reasoned with 
them — remonstrated against their measures — and attempted 
to alarm them and their followers with the conseqences of 
their conduct ; but all in vain. The Assembly was neither to 
be shaken by persuation, nor intimidated by threats. After a 
short pause, they returned with the following answer : " We 
have already acquainted you that we would not receive any 
message or paper from your honor, in conjunction with the 
gentlemen you are pleased to call your Council, therefore, we 
must now repeat the same ; and beg leave to tell you, that the 
paper you read and delivered to us we take no notice of, nor 
shall we give any further answer to it but in Great Britain." 

Immediately after, they came with an address to the Gov- 
ernor, avowing their resolution to cast off all obedience to the 
proprietary government ; declaring him to be the most fit per- 
son to govern them — and entreating him to take upon him the 
government in the name of the King. This flattering address 
concluded in the following manner : " As the well-being 
and preservation of this province, depends greatly on your 
complying with our requests ; so we flatter ourselves that 
you, who have expressed so tender regard for it on all 
occasions, and particularly in hazarding your person in 
an expedition against the pirates for its defence, we hope sir, 
that you will exert yourself at this time for its support; and 
we promise your honor on our parts, the most faithful assist- 
ance of persons duly sensible of your great goodness, and big 
with the hopes and expectation of his majesty's countenance 
and protection. And we further beg leave to assure your 
honor, that we will in the most dutiful manner address his 
sacred majesty. King George, for the continuance of your 
government over us ; under whom we doubt not to be a hap- 
py people." 

To this address the Governor replied : " I am obliged to you 
for your good opinion of me; but I hold my commission from 
the true and absolute lords and proprietors of this province, 
who recommended me to his majesty, and I have his appro- 
bation : it is by that commission and power I act, and I know 
of no authority which can dispossess me of the same but 
that of those who invested me with it. In subordination to 
them I shall always act, and, to my utmost, maintain their 
lordship's just power and prerogatives without encroaching on 
the people's rights. I do not expect or desire any favor from 
you, only that of seriously taking into consideration the ap- 


proaching danger of a foreign enemy and the steps you are 
taking to involve yourselves, and this province, in anarchy 
and confusion." 

The representatives having now fully declared their inten- 
tions, and finding it impossible to win over the Governor to a 
compliance with their measures, began to treat him with in- 
difference and neglect. He, on the other hand, perceiving 
that neither harsh nor gentle means could recall them to their 
allegiance, issued a proclamation for dissolving the House. 
The representatives ordered his proclamation to be torn from 
the marshal's hands. They met upon their own authority, 
and choose Colonel James Moore their Governor, who was a 
man excellently qualified for being a popular leader in peril- 
ous adventures. To Governor Johnson he was no friend ; 
having been by him removed from his command of the mili- 
tia, for warmly espousing the cause of the people. In every 
new enterprise he had been a volunteer ; and in all his under- 
takings was resolute, steady, and inflexible. A day was fixed 
for proclaiming him, in the name of the King, Governor of 
the province; and orders were issued for directing all otficers, 
civil and military, to continue in th eirditferent places and 
employments till they should hear further from the con- 

Johnson some time before had appointed a day for a gen- 
eral review of the provincial militia, and the Convention fixed 
on the same day for publicly proclaiming Moore. The Gov- 
ernor having intelligence of their design, sent orders to Col. 
Parris the commander of the militia to postpone the review to 
a future day. Parris, though a zealons friend to the revolu- 
tion, assured him his orders should be obeyed. Notwith- 
standing this assurance, on the day fixed when Governor 
Johnson came to town, he found, to his surprise, the militia 
drawn up in the market-square, now the site of the National 
Bank, colors flying at the forts and on board all the ships in 
the harbor; and great preparations making for the proclama- 
tion. Exasperated at the insults offered to his person and 
authority, he could not command his temper. Some he 
threatened to chastise for flying in the face of government, to 
which they had sworn fidelity ; with others he coolly rea- 
soned, and endeavored to recall them by representing the fatal 
consequence that would attend such rash proceedings. But 
advancing to Parris, he asked him " how he durst appear in 
arras contrary to his orders ?" and commanded him in the 
King's name, instantly to disperse his men. Colonel Parris 
replied " he was obeying the orders of the Convention." The 
Governor in great rage walked up towards him, upon which 
Parris immediately commanded his miUtia to present their 


muskets at him, and ordered him " to stand off at his peril." 
The Governor expected during this struggle that some friends, 
especially such as held offices of profit and trust under the 
proprietors, would have supported him, or that the militia 
would have laid down their arms at his command ; but he 
was disappointed; for all either stood silent, or kept firm to 
the standard of the convention. Vain were the efforts of his 
single arm in opposition to so general a defection. Even 
Trott and Rhett in this extremity forsook him and kept at a 
distance, the silent and inactive spectators of their master's 
ruined authority. 

After this the members of Convention, attended and escorted 
by the militia, publicly marched to the fort; and there pro- 
claimed James Moore governor of the province in the name 
of the King, which was followed by the loudest acclamations 
of the populace. Upon their return they proceeded to the 
election of twelve counsellors, after the manner of the royal 
provinces. Of these Sir Hovenden Walker was made Presi- 
dent. The revolutioners had now their Governor, Coimcil and 
Convention, and all of their own free election. In conse- 
quence of which, the delegates published a declaration in 
which they justified the measures they had adopted; and 
pledged themselves to support the new Governor, and com- 
manded all officers, civil and military, to pay him all duty 
and obedience. 

After this declaration was solemnly published, Johnson 
retained but small hope of recalling the people to obey the 
proprietary authorities. Still, however, he flattered himself 
that the men who had usurped the government would not 
long remain in a state of union and peace. In this expecta- 
tion he called together the civil officers of the proprietors, and 
ordered them to secure the public records, and shut up all of- 
fices against the revolutioners and their adherents. 

In the meantime, the delegates of the people were occu- 
pied in regulating public affairs. • They took a dislike to the 
name of Convention, as different from that of the other regal 
governments in America, and voted themselves an Assembly, 
and assumed the power of appointing all public officers. In 
place of Nicholas Trott, they made Richard AUein Chief Jus- 
tice. Another person was appointed provincial secretary, in 
the room of Charles Hart. But William Rhett and Francis 
Yonge secured to themselves the same offices they held from 
the proprietors. Col. John Barnwell was chosen agent for the 
province, and embarked for England with instructions and 
orders to apply to the king, and lav a state of their public 
proceedings before him, and to beseech his majesty to take the 
province under his immediate care and protection. A new duty 


law for raising money to defray the various expenses of gov- 
ernment was passed. Orders were given for the immediate 
repairs of the fortifications at Charlestown ; and William 
Rhett was nominated inspector-general of the projected re- 
pairs. To their new Governor they voted two thousand five 
hundred pounds, and to their Chief Justice eight hundred 
pounds current money, as yearly salaries. To their agent in 
England they transmitted one thousand pounds sterling. To 
defray these and the other expenses of government, an act 
was passed for laying a tax on lands and negroes, to raise 
thirty thousand pounds Carolina money, for the service of the 
current year. 

When they began to levy the taxes imposed by this act, 
Johnson and some of his party refused to pay; giving for 
reason that the act was not made by lawful authority. On 
'account of his particularcircumstances, Johnson was excused; 
but they resolved to- compel every other person to submit to 
their jurisdiction, and obey their laws. They seized the effects 
or negroes of such as refused — sold them at public auction — and 
applied the money for the payment of their taxes. Thus in 
spite of all opposition, they established themselves in the full 
possession of all the powers of government. 

In the meantime Johnson received certain advice that the 
Spaniards had sailed from the Havanna, with a fleet of four- 
teen ships and a force consisting of twelve hundred men, 
against South Carolina and Providence, and it was uncertain 
which of the two they would first attack. At this time of 
imminent danger, the late Governor endeavored to recall the 
people to subjection; and sent to the Convention a letter, in 
which he attempted to alarm them by representing the dan- 
gerous consequences of military operations under unlawful 
authority; but they remained firm to their purpose, and, with- 
out taking any notice of the letter, contined to do business 
with Moore as they had begun; and in concert with him, 
adopted measures for the public security. They proclaimed 
mardal law, and ordered the inhabitants of the province to 
Charlestown for its defence. All the officers of the militia ac- 
cepted their commissions from Moore, and engaged to stand 
by him against all foreign enemies. For two weeks the pro- 
vincial militia were kept under arms at Charlestown, every 
day expecting the appearance of the Spanish fleet which they 
were informed had sailed from the Havanna. The Spaniards 
resolved first to attack Providence, and then to proceed against 
Carolina ; but by the conduct and courage of captain Rogers, 
at that time governor of the island, they were repulsed, and 
soon after lost the greatest part of their fleet in a storm. 
The Spanish expedition having thus proved abortive, the 


Flamborongh man-of-war, commanded by Captain Kildesley, 
returned from Providence island to her station at Charlestown. 
About the same time his majesty's ship Phoenix, commanded 
by Captain Pierce, arrived from a cruise. The commanders 
of these two men-of-war were caressed by both parties; but 
they publicly declared for Johnson, as the magistrate invested 
with legal authority. Charles Hart, secretary of the province, 
by orders from Governor Johnson and his Council, had se- 
creted and secured the public records so that the revolulioners 
could not obtain possession of them. The clergy refused to 
marry without a license from Johnson, as the only legal ordi- 
nary of the province. These and other inconveniences, from 
the unsettled state of things, rendered several of the people 
more cool in their affection for the popular government. At this 
juncture, Johnson, with the assistance of the captains and crews 
of the ships of war, made his last and boldest effort for subject- 
ing the colonists to his authority. He brought up the ships- 
of-war in front of Charlestown, and threatened its immediate 
destruction, if the inhabitants any longer refused obedience 
to legal authority. But they having arms in their hands, and 
forts in their possession, defied his power. They were neither 
to be won by flattery, nor terrified by threats, to submit their 
necks any more to the proprietary yoke. Johnson feeling his 
impotence, made no more attempts for the recovery of his lost 

In the meantime, the agent for Carolina had procured a 
hearing from the lords of the regency and council in Eng- 
land, the King being at that time in Hanover; who gave it as 
their opinion that the proprietors had forfeited their charter, 
and ordered the attorney general to take out a scire facias 
against it. 

An act of parliament was passed in Britain for establishing 
an agreement with seven of the eight proprietors for a sur- 
render to the King of their right and interest not only in the 
government, but in the soil of the province. The purchase 
was made for 17,500 sterling. At the same time seven-eighths 
of the arrears of the quit-rents due from the colonists to the 
proprietors were purchased on behalf of the crown for £5,000. 
The remaining eighth share of the province and of the arrears 
of quit-rents were reserved out of the purchase by a clause 
in the act of parliament, for John, Lord Caitaret. About the 
same time the province was subdivided by the name of North 
and South Carolina. 

Upon a review of these transactions, we may observe: that 
although the conduct of the Carolinians, during this struggle, 
cannot be deemed conformable to the strict letter of the writ- 
ten law, yet necessity and self-preservation justify their con- 

REVOLUTION OF 1719. ,49 

duct; while all the world must applaud their moderation, 
union, firmness, and wisdom. When the proprietors first ap- 
plied to the King for a gram of this large territory, at that time 
occupied by heathens, they said they were excited thereto by 
their zeal for the propagation of the Christian faith ; yet they 
used no effectual endeavors for that purpose. The society 
for the propagation of the gospel in foreign parts employed 
and supported missionaries for the conversion of the heathens; 
but their best endeavors were inadequate to the extent of the 
work. The proprietors by their charter were empowered to 
build churches and chapels withinthe bounds of their pro- 
vince, for divine worship ; yet they left the burden of this en- 
tirely to the inhabitants, who received no encouragement or 
assistance towards its accomplishment, except from the society 
incorporated for the propagation of the gospel. The proprie- 
tors were empowered by their charter to erect castles and forts 
for the protection and defence of the colony, but the people 
were obliged to raise all these at their own expense. By the 
charter his majesty saved to himself, his heirs and successors, 
the sovereign dominion of the province; yet the proprietors 
assumed to themselves a despotic authority in repealing and 
abrogating laws made by the Assembly and ratified by their 
deputies in Carolina. They not only tyrannized over the 
colony, but employed and protected officers ten times more 
tyrannical than themselves. When the whole Legislature 
complained of Chief Justice Trott, they paid no regard to their 
complaints, and absolutely refused to remove him from the 
bench, or even to limit his jurisdiction. In times of immi- 
nent danger, when the colony applied to them for assistance, 
they were either unable or unwilling to bear the expense of 
its protection. When the Assembly allotted the lands obtained 
by conquest from the Yamassee Indians, for the encourage- 
ment of settlers to strengthen the provincial frontiers, the pro- 
prietors claimed the sole right of disposing of these lands', and 
frustratfed a judicious plan for preserving public security. When 
the trade of the province was infested by pirates, the inhab- 
itants could neither obtain a force sufficient to extirpate them, 
nor a confirmation of their laws made for defraying the ex- 
pense of such expeditions as the Assembly had fitted out 
against them. The proprietors, at the request of the London 
merchants had cried down the current money of the province, 
stamped for answering the public exigencies. The people 
saw no end of their troubles. Pressing distress dictated the 
necessity of some remedy. No expedient appeared to them 
so proper and effectual as that of throwing themselves under 
the. immediate care and protection of the crown of Great Bri- 
tain. Disgusted with the feeble proprietary Government, they, 


therefore, by one bold and irregular effort, entirely shook it 
off; and a revolution fruitful of happy consequences resulted, 
to their great relief and unspeakable satisfaction. 

From the first settlement of the colony, one perpetual strug- 
gle subsisted between the proprietors of the province and the 
cultivators of its soil. A division somewhat similar to that 
of the court and country parties in England eady sprung up 
in the settlement, and kept it in continual agitation. The 
people considered the proprietary claims of power as incon- 
sistent with their rights ; hence they became turbulent, and 
were seldom satisfied with their Governors in their public 
capacity, however esteemed and beloved as private men. The 
hands of Government were always weak, and the instructions 
and regulations received from England were for the most part 
ill adapted to the local circumstances of the people and the 
first state of colonization. The great distance and compUcated 
hardships of the Carolinians all concurred to render their 
revolutionary measures not only excusable, but necessary. 
The revolution in England had exemplified and confirmed 
the doctrine of resistance, when the executive magistrate vio- 
lates the fundamental laws and subverts the constitution of the 
nation. The proprietors had done acts which, in the opinion 
of the lords in regency, amounted to a forfeiture of their char- 
ter; and they had ordered a writ of scire facias to be taken 
out for repealing their patent and rendering the grant void. 
By these means all political connections between the propri- 
etors and people of Carolina was entirely dissolved, and a new 
relation formed ; the King having taken the provinces under 
his immediate care and made it a part of the British Empire. 

In the forty-nine years of the proprietary Government of 
South Carolina, there were twenty-three Governors.* To this 
office Joseph West was thrice appointed; and Joseph Morton 
and Joseph Blake, each twice. Joseph West was the only 
one who served as long as eight years. James Colleton and 
Seth Sothell were disgraced by the people, and Rob^t John- 
son was deposed by the same authority. 

Of the several proprietary governments in British America, 
few or none have answered. Too often have they been under- 
taken and carried on with the contracted views of land-job- 

» These were as follows: William Sayle, c-ommissioned in England, 2filh July, 
1669; JosephWest,2Sth August, 1671; Sir John Yeamans, 26th Deoeniber, 1671; 
Joseph West, second time, 13th August, 1674; Joseph Morton, 26th September, 
16S2 ; Joseph West, third time, 6th September, 1684 ; Sir Richard Kirle, unknown; 
Colonel Robert Quarry, do.; Joseph Morton, second lime, 16S5; James Colleton, 
16S6; Seth Sothell, 1690; Philip Ludwell, 1692; Thomas Smith, 1093; Joseph 
BlaUe, 1694; John Archdale, 1695; Joseph Blake, second time, 1696; James Moore, 
1700; Sir Nathaniel Johnson, 1703; Edward Tynte, December, 1709; Robert 
Gibbes, 1710; Charles Craven, 1712; Robert Daniel, 1716; Robert Johnson, 1717- 
deposed in December, 1719. 


bers. To propagate the gospel among the native heathens 
was generally the ostensible design; but to make money by 
the sale or rents of lands rising in value from the introduction 
of settlers, was for ttte most part the governing motive of 
private proprietors. To obtain a great income, from a small 
expenditure, was the leading object of their policy. They were 
therefore slow in defending and protecting their tenants. The 
subjects of subjects often fare worse than the subjects of Kings. 
Between limited monarchy and representative government, 
there seems to be no middle ground for political happiness. 

In the course of the 18th century. South Carolina underwent 
two revolutions, the last of which took place in 1776. Several 
of the actors in this are yet alive, and must be struck with the 
resemblance of the measures adopted by their predecessors and 
themselves for accomplishing these great and similar events. In 
both cases, a well-intentioned people, alarmed for their rights, 
were roused to extraordinary exertions for securing them. 
They petitioned, in a legal channel, for a redress of their 
grievances; but that being refused, they proceeded to bolder 
measures. Before they took decisive steps from which there 
was no honorable retreat, they both cemented their union by 
an association generally signed by the inhabitants. The 
physical force of government in all countries rests with the 
governed; but from the want of union and concert, they often 
quietly submit to be ruled with a rod of iron, or make such 
feeble, injudicious efforts in the cause of liberty as incur the 
penalties of rebellion, instead of gaining the blessings of a 
change for the better. The case was otherwise in Carolina. 
In both revolutions, an honest people engaged by a solemn 
agreement to support each other in defence of their rights, 
and to yield obedience to the leaders of their own appoint- 
ment. When they had bound themselves by the tie of an 
association, they seized their arms, took the forts and maga- 
zines into possession, and assumed the direction of the militia. 
A new government, without confusion or violence, virtually 
superseded the existing authority of the proprietary Governor 
in one case, and of the King's representative in the other. 
The revolutioners in both respectfully asked their former 
Governors to join them; but from principles of honor and 
delicacy they declined. On their refusal they became pri- 
vate persons, and the people proceeded without them to 
organize every department of Government by their own au- 
thority. The popular leaders in one case called themselves a 
Convention of the people, and in the other a Provincial Con- 
gress; but in both, when the revolution was completed, they 
voted themselves an Assembly, passed laws in the usual man- 
ner, and by manifestoes justified their conduct to the world. 


In these proceedings neither party nor faction had any hand. 
The general interests of the great body of the settlers, were 
the pole st-ar by which public measures were regulated. The 
people, guided neither by private views nor selfish ends, and 
acting in unison, eventually found their labors crowned with 
success; and that each change of government produced for 
their country a melioration of its circumstances. A whole 
generation passed away, and a new one sprung up in the 
interval, between these two revolutions, though only fifty- 
seven years distant. No individual has been recognized as 
an actor in both. But the name of Middleton was conspicu- 
ous in the first, and more so in the last. Arthur Middleton 
was President of the Convention of the People in 1719; his 
son, Henry Middleton, President of the Congress of the United 
Colonies in 1774; and his grandson, Arthur Middleton, was 
one of the subscribers to the famous Declaration of Indepen- 
dence in 1776, by which South Carolina became a sovereign 

The proprietary Government of Carolina maybe termed its 
infancy. When it ceased in 1719, St. Stephen's was the fron- 
tier of the province. Forts were erected there in St. John's, 
on Colonel Glaze's land, near Dorchester, Dorchester, Wiltown, 
and other places about the same distance from the coast; and 
were necessary to defend the settlers from the Indians. The 
former rarely ventured fifty miles from the Atlantic. The lat- 
ter occupied what is now called the upper and middle country 
of Carolina, and were very troublesome neighbors. Their 
distressing incursions occasionally penetrated as low as Goose 
creek. Charlestown was not perfectly safe, for it was exposed 
to danger both from them and the Spaniards. As much of 
it as lies between the Central Market and Water street, the Bay, 
and Meeting street, was fortified both on the land and water 
side. Much of that part of it which lay to the west of Meet- 
ing street, and the north and south of Broad street, was either 
a forest, or laid out in farms, gardens, orange-groves or orch- 
ards, with here and there a straggling house. Peltry or lum- 
ber, with a little rice, were the only exports of the province. 
The planters were better satisfied with a dollar per hundred 
for the last article, than they have been for years past with 
three. The coast was infested with pirates, and they made 
several captures near the bar of CharlestQwn. There were 
incessant contentions between the inhabitants and the propri- 
etors; great dissensions between the Episcopalians and Dis- 
senters, and for several years bitter animosities between the 
French refugees and English settlers. There was very little 
real money in the province. The planters were clamorous 
for bills of credit, and the merchants and others very much 

ROYAL GOVERNMENT, 1720 1776. 53 

opposed to their increase and protracted circulation. The 
police of the country was without energy. Demagogues en- 
deavored to gain popularity by flattering the people, while 
others were equally active in courting the favor of the propri- 
etors by personal attentions, and by vindicating their claims. 
The real good of the people was a secondary object with both. 
The government was not administered for the benefit of the 
governed. The latter were dissatisfied, and by a judicious 
exertion of their inherent rights, obtained a change for the 


Royal Governme7it from 1720 to 1776. 

The form of government conferred on Carolina when it 
became a royal province, was formed on the model of the 
British Constitution. It consisted of a Governor, a Council 
and Assembly. To them the power of making laws was 
committed. The King appointed the Governor, and delegated 
to him his constitutional powers. The Council was appointed 
by the King to advise the Governor, and to assist in legisla- 
tion; and was intended to represent the House of Lords. 
The Assembly, like the House of Commons in Great Britain, 
consisted of the representatives of the people; and was elected 
by them to be the guardians of their lives, liberties, and 
property. The Governor convened, prorogued, and dissolved 
the Assembly, and had a negative on the bills of both houses 
and the execution of the laws. He also had powers of chan- 
cery, admiralty, of supreme ordinary, and of appointing 
magistrates and militia officers. After bills received his as- 
sent they were sent to Great Britain for royal approbation. 
But were obligatory as laws in the meantime, unless they 
were passed with a saving clause. The Governor received his 
instructions from England, and it was his duty to transmit 
authentic accounts of the state of his province, that these 
instructions might be founded in truth and utility. This is a 
general sketch of the royal government given to the privince 
of Carolina, in lieu of the proprietary system. The change 
soon appeared to be for the better. 

Early in 1721 General Francis Nicholson arrived in South 
Carolina, with a royal commission to be Governor. He was 
generous, bold, and steady. Possessing the firmness, integrity 


and honor of a soldier, he was well qualified for discharging 
the duties of his exalted station. The people received him 
with uncommon demonstrations of joy. The voice of mur- 
mur and discontent, together with the fears of danger and 
oppression, were banished from the province. The people 
resolved to forget former animosities, and to bury past offences 
in eternal oblivion. The only contention was who should 
be the most zealous in promoting the union, peace, and 
prosperity of the settlement. They looked upon themselves 
as happily delivered from a confused and distracted state ; 
and anticipated all the blessings of freedom and security. 

Soon after his arrival, Governor Nicholson issued writs for 
the election of a new Assembly. The persons returned as 
members entered with great temper and cheerfulness on the 
regulation of provincial affairs. They choose James Moore, 
their late popular Governor, to be Speaker of the House; and 
their choice was confirmed by the King's representative. 
The first business they engaged in was to pass an act de- 
claring, that they recognized and acknowledged his sacred 
majesty. King George, to be the rightful sovereign of Gr^at 
Britain, France, and Ireland, and of all the dominions and 
provinces belonging to the empire ; and in particular his un- 
doubted right to the province of Carolina. All actions and 
suits at law, commenced on account of the late administration 
of James Moore by particular persons, were declared void;, 
but all judicial proceedings under the same administration, 
were confirmed. These acts were judged proper and ne- 
cessary for estabisliing harmony among the inhabitants. 
Nicholson had the address to unite all parties ; and by the 
wisdom and equity of his administration, to render the whole 
community happy under their new government and highly 
pleased with the change. Though he was bred a soldier, and 
was profane and passionate, yet he was not insensible of the 
great advantage of religion to society and contributed not a 
little to its interest in Carolina. On his application to the So- 
ciety in England for propagating the gospel in foreign parts, 
they sent out teachers, money, and books, for the instruction 
of the inhabitants, and also supplied the province with cler- 
gymen ; and gave each of them a yearly allowance, over and 
above the provincial salary. He also, with great zeal, urged the 
usefulness, and necessity, of provincial establishments for the 
promotion of literature. 

Governor Nicholson, who was well acquainted with the 
manners of savages, applied himself with great zeal to regulate 
Indian affairs, and to form treaties of friendship with the 
different tribes around the settlement. As most of the broils 
between the settlers and the Indians had been occasioned by 
by the former taking unauthorized possession of lands claimed 

ROTAL GOVERNMENT, 1720 1776. 55 

by the latter, to prevent future quarrels from that source, 
he sent a message to the Cherokees, a numerous and warlike 
nation, acquainting them that he had presents to make them 
and would meet them at the borders of their territories, to 
hold a general congress, to treat of mutual friendship and 
commerce. They rejoiced at a proposal which implied they 
were a free people, and immediately the chiefs of thirty-seven 
different towns set out to meet him. 

At this congress the Governor gave them several presents — 
smoked the pipe of peace — and afterwards marked the bound- 
aries of the lands between them and the English settlers. 
He also regulated all weights and measures, that justice might 
be done them in the way of traffic — appointed an agent to 
superintend their affairs, and proposed to nominate one war- 
rior as commander-in-chief of the whole nation, before whom 
all complaints were to be made, and who was to acquaint 
the Governor with every injury done them. After which the 
Indians returned to their towns, highly pleased with their 
generous brother and new ally. The Governor then proceeded 
to conclude a treaty of commerce and peace with the Creeks, 
who were also at that time a numerous and formidable nation. 
He likewise appointed an agent to reside among them, whose 
business was to regulate Indian affairs in a friendly and equi- 
table manner, and he fixed on Savannah river as the boundary'- 
of their hunting lands, beyond which, no settlements were to 

The policy respecting Indians had hitherto proceeded on 
the idea of peace and commerce with independent neighbors, 
and seemed to have little more in view than a share in their 
superfluous lands and the tranquility of the English settle- 
ments ; but about this time the projects of the French, for 
uniting Canada and Louisiana, began to be developed. They 
had extended themselves northwardly from the Gulf of Mex- 
ico, and eastwardly from the upper parts of the river Missis- 
sippi, and had made many friends among the Indians to the 
southward and westward of Carolina. To counteract the 
views of the French, Great Britain wished to convert the 
Indians, on her borders, into allies or subjects. Treaties of 
union and alliance with them were therefore deemed proper 
and necessary. For this purpose Sir Alexander Cumming 
was appointed and sent out to conclude a treaty of alliance 
with the Cherokees. These Indians occupied the lands about 
the head of Savannah river, and backwards among the Apa- 
lachian mountains. The country they claimed as their 
hunting ground was of immense extent. The inhabitants 
of their different towns, were computed to amount to more 
than twenty thousand. Of these, six thousand were warriors, 


fit on any emergency to take the field. An alliance with 
such a nation was an object of the highest consequence, both 
to Carolina and the mother country ; the latter of which was 
now engaged for the defence and protection of the former. 

At)oi;t the beginning of the year 1730, Sir Alexander Gum- 
ming arrived in Carolina and made preparations for his 
journey to the distant hills. When he reached Keowee, about 
300 miles from Charlestown, the chiefs of the lower towns 
met and received him with marks of friendship and esteem. 
He immediately despatched messengers to the middle, the 
valley, and overhill settlements ; and summoned a general 
meeting of all their chiefs to hold a congress with him at 
Nequasee. In the month of April the chief warriors of all 
the Cherokee towns assembled at the place appointed. After 
the various Indian ceremonies were over, Sir Alexander made 
a speech to them; acquainting them by whose authority he 
was sent, and representing the great power, and goodness, of 
his sovereign King George : how he and all his other subjects 
paid a cheerful obedience to his laws, and of course were pro- 
tected by him from all harm : that he had come a great way 
to demand of Moytoy, and all the chieftains of the nation, to 
acknowledge themselves the subjects of his King, and to 
promise obedience to his authority; and as he loved them, 
and was answerable to his sovereign for their good and peace- 
able behavior, he hoped they would agree to what he should 
now require of them. Upon which, the chiefs falling on their 
knees, solemnly promised fidelity and obedience, calling upon 
all that was terrible to. fall upon them if they violated their 
promise. Sir Alexander then, by their unanimous consent, 
nominated Moytoy commander and chief of the Cherokee 
nation, and enjoined all the warriors, of the different tribes to 
acknowledge him as their King to whom they were to be ac- 
countable for their conduct. To this they also agreed, provided 
Moytoy should be made answerable to Sir Alexander for his 
behavior to them. After which, many presents were made to 
them, and the congress ended to the satisfaction of both par- 
ties. The crown was brought from Tenassee, their chief 
town, which, with five eagle tails and four scalps of their ene- 
mies, Moytoy presented to Sir Alexander, requesting him, on 
his arrival at Britain, to lay them at his majesty's feet. But 
Sir Alexander proposed to Moytoy that he should depute sorae 
of their chiefs to accompany him to England, there to do hom- 
age in person to the great King. Six of them agreed and 
accompanied Sir Alexander to Charlestown, where, being 
joined by another, they embarked for England. 

Being admitted into the presence of the King they, in the 
name of their nation, promised to continue forever his maj- 

ROYAL GOVERNMENT, 1720 1776. 57 

esty's faithful and obedient subjects. A treaty* was accord- 
ingly drawn up and signed by Alured Popple, Secretary to 
the lords commissioners of trade and plantations on one side, 
and by the marks of the Indian chiefs on the other. The 
Cherokees, in consequence of this treaty, for many years re- 
mained in a state of perfect friendship and peace with the 
colonists, who followed their various employments in the 
neighborhood of these Indians without the least terror or 

* The preamble to this treaty recites " That, whereas, the six Chiefs, with the 
consent of the whole nation of Cherokees, at a general meeting of their nation at 
Nequassee, were deputed by Moytoy, their chief warrior, to attend Sir Alexander 
Cunimiitg to Great Britain, where they had seen the great King George: and Sir 
Alexander, by authority from Moytoy and all the Cherokees, had laid down the 
crown of their nation, with the scalps of their enemies and feathers of glory at 
his majesty's feet, as a pledge of their loyalty. And, whereas, the great King had 
commanded the lords commissioners of trade and plantations, to inform the In- 
dians that the English on all sides of the mountains and lakes, were his people, their 
friends, his friends, and their enemies, his enemies — that he took it kindly the 
great nation of Cherokees had sent them so far to brighten the chain of friendship 
between him and them, and between his people and their people ; that the chain 
of friendship between him and the Cherokees is now like the sun which shines 
both in Britain and also upon the great mountains where they live, and equally 
warms the hearts of Indians and Englishmen; that as there is no spots or black- 
ness in the sun, so neither is there any rust or foulness on this chain. And as 
the King has fastened one end to his breast, he desired them to carry the other 
end of the chain and fasten it to the breast of Moytoy of Telliquo, and to the 
breasts of all their old wise men, their captains and people, never more to be 
made loose or broken. 

The great King and the Cherokees being thus fastened together by a chain of 
friendship, he has ordered, and it is agreed, that his children in Carolina do trade 
with the Indians, and furnish them with all manner of goods they want, and to 
make haste to build houses and plant corn from Charlestown towards the towns 
of the Cherokees behind the great mountains. That he desires the English and 
Indians may live together as children of one family; that the Cherokees be always 
ready to fight against any nation, whether white men or Indians, who shall dare 
molest or hurt the English — that the nation of Cherokees shall, on their part, take 
care to keep the trading path clean — that there be no blood on the path where the 
English tread, even though they should be accompanied with other people with 
whom the Cherokees may be at war. That the Cherokees shall not suffer their 
people to trade with white men of any other nation but the Enghsh, nor permit 
white men of any other nation to build any forts or cabins, or plant any corn 
among them upon lands which belong to the great King; and if any such at- 
tempt shall be made, the Cherokees must acquaint the English Governor there- 
with, and do whatever he directs, in order to maintain and defend the great King's 
right to the country of Carolina. That if any negroes shall run away into the 
woods from their English masters, the Cherokees shall endeavor to apprehend 
them and bring Ihem to the plantation from whence they run away, or to the Gov- 
ernor, and for every slave so apprehended and brought back, the Indian that brings 
him shall receive a gun and a watch-coat ; and if by any accident, it shall happen 
that an Englishman shall kill a Cherokee, the king or chief of the nation shall first 
complain to the English Governor, and the man who did the harm shall be pun- 
ished by the English laws as if he had killed an Englishman ; and in like manner 
if any Indian happens to kill an Englishman, the Indian shall be delivered up to 
the Governor, to be punished by the same English laws as if he were an English- 

This was the substance of the first treaty between the King and the Cherokees, 
every article of which was accompanied with presents. A speech was at the 
same lime addressed to the Indians, in which they were informed "that these 
were the words of the great King whom they had seen; and as a token that his 
heart was open and true to his cliildren the Cherokees, and to all their people, a 
belt was given the warriors, which, they were told, the King desired them to keep 


About the beginning of the year 1731, Robert Johnson, who 
had been proprietary Governor of Carolina, arrived with a 
commission, investing him with a similar ofBce in behalf of 
the crown. He brought back these Indian chiefs, possessed 
with the highest ideasof the power and greatness of the Eng- 
lish nation, and pleased with the kind and generous treatment 
they had received. 

This new Governor, from his knowledge of the province, 
was well quahfied for his high office; and had a council to 
assist him, composed of the most influential inhabitants. 
Thomas Broughton was appointed Lieutenant Governor, and 
Robert Wright, Chief Justice. The other members of the 
Council were William Bull, James Kinlock, Alexander Skene, 
John Fenwicke, Arthur Middleton, Joseph Wragg, Francis 
Yonge, John Hamerton and Thomas Waring. 

Mr. Johnson had acted with great spirit in opposing the 
Carolinians in 1719, when they threw oS the proprietary gov- 
ernment ; but they had Uberality enough to consider him as 
having acted solely from a sense of duty and honor. He was 
not only well received in his new oflace, but the Assembly 
honored him after his death by erecting a handsome monu- 
ment to his memory in St. Philip's church, highly applauding 
his adrhinistration. 

For the encouragement of the people, now connected with 
the mother country, several favors were granted them. The 
restraint upon rice, an enumerated commodity, was partly 

and show to all their people, to their children, and children's children, to confirm 
what was now spoken, and to bind this agreement of peace and friendship between 
the English and Cherokees as long as the rivers shall run, the mountains shall 
last, or the sun shall shine." 

In answer to which SIcijagustah, in name of the rest, made a speech to the 
following effect: " We are come hither from a mountainous place, where notiiing 
but darkness is to be found — but we are now in a place where there is light. We 
look upon you as if the great King were present — we love you as representing 
the great King — we shall die in the same way of thinking — the crown of our nation 
is different from that which the great King George wears, and from that we saw 
in the tower, but to us it is all one — the chain of friendship shall be carried to our 
people — we look upon the great King George as the sun and as our father, and 
upon ourselves as his children; for though we are red and you are white, yet our 
hands and hearts are joined together. When we shall have acquainted our people 
with what we have seen, our children from generation to generation will always 
remember it. In war we shall always be one with you — the enemies of the great 
King shall be our enemies — his people and ours shall be one, and shall die together. 
We came hither naked and poor as the worms of the earth; but you have every 
thing, and we that have nothing must love you, and will never break the chain of 
friendship which is between us. This small rope we show you is all that we have 
to bind our slaves with, and it may be broken, but you have iron chains for yours— 
however, if we catch your slaves, we will bind them as well as we can, and 
deliver them to our friends and take no pay for it. Your white people may very 
safely build houses near us ; we shall hurt nothing that belongs to them, for we 
are children of one father, the great King, and shall live and die together." Then 
laying down his feathers upon the table, he added : "This is our way of talking, 
wiiich is the same thing to us as your letters in the book are to you, and to you, 
beloved men, we deliver these feathers in confirmation of all we have said." 

ROTAL GOVERNMENT, 1720 1776. 59 

taken oif ; and that it might arrive more seasonably and in 
better condition at market, the colonists were permitted to 
send it directly to any port sonthward of Cape Finisterre. A 
bounty on hemp was also allowed by parliament. The arrears 
of quit-rents, bought from the proprietors, were remitted by 
the liberality of the crown. For the benefit of trade, their 
bills of credit were continued, and seventy-seven thousand 
pounds were stamped and issued by virtue of an act of the 
Legislature, called the appropriation law. Seventy pieces of 
cannon were sent out by the King; and the Governor had 
instructions to build one fort at Port Royal, and another on 
the river Alatamaha. An independent company of foot was 
allowed for their defence by land, and ships of war were sta- 
tioned on the coast for the protection of trade. From these 
and several other benefits conferred on the colony, it soon 
began to emerge from the depths of poverty, and rapidly rose 
to a state of ease and affluence. 

As a natural consequence of its domestic security the credit 
of the province, in England, increased. The merchants of 
London, Bristol and Liverpool, turned their eyes to Carolina 
as a new and promising channel of trade; and established 
houses in Charlestown for conducting their iDusiness with the 
planters, and poured in slaves for cultivating their lands, and 
manufactures for supplying their plantations, and furnished 
them with both on credit and at a cheap rate. With this 
increased force, the lands were cleared and cultivated with 
greater facility. The lands rose in value, and men of fore- 
sight and judgment began to look out and secure the rich 
spots for themselves. The produce of the province in a few 
years was doubled. From this period, its exports kept pace 
with the imports, and secured its credit in England. 

Hitherto, Carolina had made small progress in cultivation. 
The face of the country appeared like a desert, with little spots 
here and there cleared. The colonists were slovenly farmers, 
owing to the vast quantities of lands and the easy and cheap 
terms of obtaining them. They were more indebted for a 
good crop to the natural richness of the soil, than to their own 
culture and management. They had abundance of the neces- 
saries and several of the conveniences of life. But their 
habitations were clumsy, miserable wooden huts. Charles- 
town, at this time, consisted of between five and six hundred 
houses, mostly built of timber, and neither comfortable nor 
well constructed. Henceforward the province improved in 
building as well as in other respects. Many ingenious arti- 
ficers and tradesmen of different kinds, found encouragement 
in it, and introduced a taste for brick buildings, and more 
neat and pleasant habitations. As the colony increased, the 


face of the country exhibited an appearance of industry and 

For the farther security of Carolina, the settlement of a new 
colony between the rivers Alatamaha and Savannah was, 
about the year 1732, projected in England. This large terri- 
tory lay waste without any civilized inhabitants. The new 
province was called Georgia in honor of the King, who greatly 
encouraged the undertaking. 

While the security of Carolina against external enemies, by 
this settlement of Georgia, engaged the attention of the British 
government, the means of its internal improvement and popu- 
lation were not neglected. 

John Peter Pury, of Neufchatel in Switzerland, having 
formed a design of leaving his native country, paid a visit 
to Carolina, in order to inform himself of the circumstances 
and situation of the province. After viewing the lands he 
returned to Britain. The government entered into a contract 
with him, and agreed to give lands and four hundred pounds 
sterling for every hundred effective men he should transport 
from Switzerland to Carolina. Pury having drawn up a flat- 
tering account of the soil and climate,* and of the excellence 
and freedom of the provincial government, returned to Swit- 
zerland and published it among the people. Immediately 
one hundred and seventy Switzers agreed to follow him, and 
were transported to the fertile and delightful province as he 
described it. Not long afterwards two hundred more came 
and joined them. The Governor, agreeably to instructions, 
allowed forty thousand acres of land for the use of the Swiss 
settlement on the northeast side of Savannah river ; and a 
town was marked out for their accommodation, which was 
called Purysburg, from the name of the principal promoter of 
the settlement. Mr. Bignion, a Swiss minister, whom they 
had engaged to go with them, having received Episcopal 
ordination from the Bishop of London, settled among them 
for their religious instruction. The Governor and Council, 
happy in the acquisition of such a force, allotted to each of 
them his separate tract of land and gave every encourage- 
ment in their power to the people. The Swiss emigrants 
began their labors with uncommon zeal and energy ; highly 
elevated with the idea of possessing landed estates. But in a 
short time they felt the many inconveniences attending a 
change of climate. Several of them sickened and died, and 
others found the hardships of the first state of colonization 

* This may be found ia Anderson's History of Commerce. It proceeds on the 
idea that countries lying in tlie 32d degree of North latitude, (the site of Palestine 
and of South Carolina,) are remarkable for their fertility; the production of the 
most valuable commodities, and other good qualities. 

ROTAL GOVERNMENT, 1720 1776. 61 

much greater than they expected. They became discontented. 
Smarting under the pressure of indigence and disappointment, 
they not only blamed Pury for deceiving them, but repented 
tiieir leaving their native country. 

According to a new plan, adopted in England, for the more 
speedy population and settlement of the province, the Gov- 
ernor had instructions to mark out eleven townships in square 
plats on the sides of rivers consisting each of twenty thousand 
acres ; and to divide the land within them into shares of fifty 
acres for each man, woman, and child that should come to 
occupy and improve them. Each township was to form a 
parish, and all the inhabitants were to have an equal right to 
the river. So soon as the parish should increase to the num- 
ber of an hundred families they were to have a right to send 
two members, of their own election, to the Assembly and to 
enjoy the same privileges as the other parishes already estab- 
lished. Each settler was to pay four shillings a year for every 
hundred acres of land, except the first ten years ; during 
which term they were to be rent free. Accordingly ten town- 
ships were marked out; two on river Alatamaha, two on 
Savannah, two on Santee, one on Pedee, one on Wacamaw, 
one on Wateree, and one on Black river. 

By this time accounts of the great privileges granted by the 
Crown, for the encouragement of- settlers in the province had 
been published through Britain and Ireland ; and many 
industrious people had resolved to take the benefit of the 
royal bounty. Multitudes of laborers and husbandmen in 
Ireland oppressed, by landlords and bishops, and unable to 
procure a comfortable subsistence for their families, embarked 
for Carolina. The first colony of Irish people had lands 
granted to them ; and about the year 1734 formed the settle- 
ment called Williamsburg township. But notwithstanding 
the bounty of the Crown they remained for several years in 
low and distressing circumstances. The climate proved fatal 
to numbers of them. In consequence of hard labor and 
scanty provisions at the commencement of the settlement a 
considerable number, debihtated in body and dejected in 
spirits, sickened and died. But as this township received 
frequent supplies from the same quarter, the Irish settlers 
amidst every hardship increased in number. Having ob- 
tained' credit with the merchants for negroes they were, 
relieved from the severest part of their labor. By this aid, 
and their own industry, spots of land were cleared, which in 
a short period yielded them plenty of provisions and in time 
became fruitful estates. 

In proportion as Carolina flourished and extended, the 
Spaniards of Florida became more troublesome. At this time 


there were about forty thousand negroes in the province. Long 
had hberty and protection been promised and proclaimed to 
them by the Spaniards at St. Augustine. At different times 
Spanish emissaries had been found secretly persuading them 
to fly from their masters to Florida, and several had made their 
escape to that settlement Of these negro refugees, the Gov- 
ernor of Florida formed a regiment, appointed officers from 
among themselves, allowed them the same pay, and clothed 
them in the same uniform with the regular Spanish soldiers. 
The most sensible part of the slaves in Carolina, were not 
ignorant of this Spanish regiment, for when they ran away, 
they constantly directed their course to that quarter. 

While Carolina was kept in a state of constant fear, an insur- 
rection, which alarmed the whole province, broke out in the 
heart of the settlement. In the year 1740 a number of ne- 
groes having assembled together at Stono, surprised and killed 
two young men in a warehouse and then plundered it of guns 
and ammunition. Being thus provided with arms, they 
elected one of their number captain, put themselves under 
his command, and marched towards the southwest with colors 
flying and drums beating. They forcibly entered the house 
of Mr. Godfrey, and having murdered him, his wife and chil- 
dren, they took all the arms he had in it, set fire to the house, 
and proceeded towards Jaoksonborough. In their way they 
plundered and burnt every house, killed the white people, and 
compelled the negroes to join them. Governor Bull, returning 
to Charlestown from the southward met them, and observing 
them armed, quickly rode out of their way. He crossed over 
to Johns Island, and from thence came to Charlestown with 
the first intelligence. Mr. Golightly in like manner met the 
armed black insurgents, and rode out of their way; but went 
directly to the Presbyterian church at Wiltown, and gave the 
alarm. By a law of the province, all planters were obliged to 
carry their arms to church. Mr. Golightly joined the armed 
men, thus providentially assembled, and proceeded with them 
directly from the church, to engage the negroes about eight 
miles distant. The women were left trembling with fear, 
while the militia under the command of Captain Bee, marched 
in quest of" the negroes, who by this time, had become 
formidable from the number that joined them. They had 
marched above fifteen miles, and spread desolation through 
all the plantations in their way. Having found rum in some 
houses and drank freely of it, they halted in an open field and 
began to sing and dance by way of triumph. During these 
rejoicings, the militia came up and stationed themselves iQ 
different places to prevent their escape. The intoxication ol 
several of the slaves, favored the assailants. One party ad- 

ROYAL GOVERNMENT, ] 720 1776. 63 

vanced into the open field and attacked them.* Having 
killed some negroes, the remainder took to the woods, and 
were dispersed. Many ran hack to their plantations, in hopes 
of escaping snspicion from the ahsence of their masters ; but 
the greater part were taken and tried. Such as had been com- 
pelled to join, contrary to their inchnations, were pardoned ; 
but the leaders and first insurgents suff'ered death. 

All Carolina was struck with consternation by this insurrec- 
tion, in which about twenty persons were murdered, and had 
not the people in that quarter been armed and collected at 
church, it is probable many more would have sufi'ered. It 
was commonly believed, and not without reason, that the 
Spaniards, by their secret influence and intrigues with slaves 
had instigated them to this massacre. To prevent further 
attempts Governor Bull sent an express to General Oglethorpe, 
with advice of the insurrection, desiring him to double his 
vigilance in Georgia and seize all straggling Spaniards and 
negroes. At the same time a company of rangers were em- 
ployed to patrol the frontiers, and block up all passages by 
which they might make their escape to Florida. 

About this time, November 18th, 1740, nearly one-half of 
Charlestown was consumed by fire. It began about two 
o'clock P. M., and continued until eight. The houses being 
built of wood, and the wind blowing hard at northwest, the 
flames spread with astonishing rapidity. From the south side 
of Broad street to Granville's Bastion, almost every house was 
at one time in flames except the north side of Broad street 
and the north end of the Bay; the trading part of the town, 
was nearly destroyed. The rum, pitch, tar, turpentine, and 
gunpowder, in the different stores, served to spread the deso- 
lating element. A violent wind carried the burning shingles 
to a great distance. While floating in the air they added to 
the borrow of the scene, and falling on remote houses, excited 
new conflagrations rivalling the first. The cries of children 
and the shrieks of women propagated a general alarm. The 
anxiety of each individual for his own connections, prevented 
united exertions for common safety; while flames bursting 
forth from different quarters at the same time, nearly induced 
despair of saving any part of the town. The fire continued to 
spread desolation, until the calmness of the evening closed the 

^' The militia attacked the negroes just as they had dined, and were preparing 
to move off. They had a few minutes before fired the dwelling house at a planta- 
tion which has been ever since called " Battlefield." As soon as they discovered 
the white people, their black captain, named Cato, who had two loaded guns, 
immediately discharged one, and as he stooped to get the other, w^as shot down. 
After this, the survivors made but little resistance, scattered, and endeavored to 
escape. The fire in the house was extinguished, afterburning a hole in the 
floor. This was sulTered to remain open for many years, as a memorial of the 


dreadful scene. Three hundred of the best buildings wer 
consumed, which, together with loss of goods and couritr 
commodities, amounted to a prodigious sum. Few lives wer 
lost, but the lamentations of ruined families were heard ii 
every quarter. From a flourishing condition, the town wa; 
reduced in the space of six hours to a most deplorable state 
The inhabitants, whose houses escaped the flames, kindly in 
vited their unfortunate neighbors to them, so that two or thre( 
famihes were lodged in places built only for the accommoda 
tion of one. After the legislature met they agreed to maki 
application to the British parliament for relief It votec 
twenty thousand pounds sterling, to be distributed among th( 
sufferers. This relief was seasonable and useful on the on( 
side, and displayed a generous and noble spirit on the other 

Since the province was taken under the royal care, it was 
nursed and protected by a rich and powerful nation. It; 
government was staple, private property secure, and the privi- 
leges of the people extensive. The planters obtained lands 
from the King at a cheap rate. The mother country furnished 
laborers upon credit; each person had entire liberty to manage 
his affairs for his own profit and advantage, and having no 
tythes and very trifling taxes to pay, reaped almost the whole 
fruits of his industry. He obtained British manufactures at 
an easy rate, and drawbacks were allowed on articles oi 
foreign manufacture that they might be brought cheaper to the 
American market. Frugal industrious planters, every three 
or four years, doubled their capital and their progress towards 
independence and opulence was rapid. 

The plan of setthng townships, especially as it was accom- 
panied with the royal bounty, proved beneficial in many re- 
spects. It encouraged multitudes of poor oppressed people in 
Ireland, Holland, and Germany, to emigrate ; by which means 
the province received a number of useful settlers. As many 
of them came from manufacturing towns in Europe, it might 
haVe been expected that they would naturally have pursued 
the occupations to which they had been bred and in which 
their chief skill consisted; but this was by no means the case, 
for, excepting a few that took up their residence in Charles- 
town, they applied themselves to grazing and agriculture. By 
raising hemp, wheat, and corn, in the interior parts of the 
country, and curing hams, bacon, and beef, they supplied 
the market with abundance of provisions. 

As every family of laborers was an acquisition to the 
country, for the encouragement of settlers to migrate thither 
and improve the vacant lands, a door was opened to protes- 
tants of every nation. Lands free from quit-rents for the first 
ten years were allotted to men, women, and children. With 

ROYAi; GOVEBNMENT, 1720 1776. 65 

their bounty-money they purchased utensils for cultivation, 
and hogs and cows to begin their stock. The like bounty was 
allowed to all servants, after the expiration of the term of their 
servitude. From this period Carolina was found to be an ex- 
cellent refuge to the poor, the unfortunate, and oppressed. The 
population and prosperity of her colonies, engrossed the atten- 
tion of the mother country. His majesty's bounty served to 
alleviate the hardships inseparable from the first years of cul- 
tivation ; and landed property animated the emigrants to 
industry and perseverance. The different townships yearly 
increased in numbers. Every one, upon his arrival, obtained 
his grant of land and sat down on his freehold with no taxes, 
or very trifling ones, and enjoyed full liberty to hunt and fish, 
together with many other advantages and privileges he never 
knew in Europe. If they could not be called rich during their 
own lives, by improving their little freeholds, they commonly 
left their children in easy circumstances. Even in the first 
stage, being free and contented, their condition in many re- 
spects was preferable to that of laborers in Europe. In all 
improved countries, where commerce and manufacture have 
been long established and luxury prevails, the lower classes 
are oppressed and miserable. In Carolina, persons of that 
description though exposed to more troubles and hardships 
for a few years, had better opportunities than in Europe for 
advancing to an easy and independent State. Hence it hap- 
pened that few emigrants ever returned to their native country; 
on the contrary, the success and prosperity of the most fortu- 
nate brought many adventurers and relations after them. 
Their love to their former friends, aud their natural partiality 
for their countrymen, induced the old planters to receive the 
new settlers joyfully and even to assist and relieve them. 
Each individual possessing his own property, a reciprocal in- 
dependence produced mutual respect and beneficence. Such 
general harmony and industry reigned among them that the 
townships, from a desolate wilderness, soon became fruitful 

The vast quantities of unoccupied land furnished the poor 
emigrants with many advantages. While they were encoun- 
tering the hardships of the first years of cultivation, the incon- 
veniences gradually decreased in proportion to their improve- 
ments. The merchants being favored with credit from Britain, 
were enabled to extend it to the inhabitants. The planters 
having established their characters for honesty and industry, 
obtained negroes to assist them in the harder tasks of clearing 
and cultivating the soil. Their wealth consisted in the in- 
crease of their slaves, stock, and improvements. Having 
abundance of waste land, they extended their culture in pro- 


portion to their capital. They lived almost entirely on the 
produce of their estates, and consequently spent but a small 
part of their annual income. The surplus was yearly added 
to the capital, and they enlarged their prospects in proportion 
to their wealth and strength. If there was a great demand at 
market for the commodities the}'- raised, their progress became 
rapid beyond expectation. They labored and received in- 
creasing encouragement to persevere until they advanced to 
an easy and comfortable state. It has been observed on the 
other hand, that few of the settlers who brought much pro- 
perty with them succeeded as well as those who brought little 
or none. It was pre-eminently a good poor man's country. 

If the emigrant chose to follow his trade, the high price of 
labor was no less encouraging. By the indulgence of the 
merchants, or by the security of a friend he obtained credit 
for a few negroes. He taught them his trade, and a few good 
tradesman well employed were equal to a small estate. In a 
little time he acquired some money; and, like several others 
in the city whose yearly gain exceeded what is requisite for 
the support of themselves and families, put it out on interest. 
The legal interest of the province was ten per cent, till 1748, 
and eight per cent, from that year till 1777. This high rate 
induced many who were unwilling to settle plantations, to 
choose this method of increasing their fortune. If the money 
lender followed his employment in the capital, or reserved in 
his hands a sufficiency for family use, and allowed the inter- 
est to be added yearly to the capital stock, his fortune soon 
became considerable. Several persons preferred this method 
of accumulating riches to that of cultivation; especially those 
whom age or infirmity had rendered unfit for action and 

Notwithstanding the extensive credit commonly allowed by 
the merchants, the number of borrowers always exceeded that 
of the lenders of money. Having vast extent of territory the 
planters were eager to obtain laborers, which raised the de- 
mand for money and kept up a high rate of interest. The in- 
terest of money in every country is for the most part according 
to the demand, and the demand according to the profits made 
by the use of it. The profits must always be great where 
men can afford to take money at the rate of eight or ten per 
cent. In Carolina laborers on good lands cleared their first 
cost and charges in a few years, and therefore the demand for 
money to procure them was great 

The borrower of money obtained his landed estate from the 
crown. The quit-rents and taxes were inconsiderable. Being 
both, landlord and farmer he had perfect liberty to manage 
and improve his plantation as he pleased, and was accounta- 

ROYAL GOVERNMENT, 1720 1776. 67 

ble to none for the fruits of his industry. His estate furnished 
him with game and fish, which he could kill and use at pleas- 
ure. In the woods his cattle, hogs, and horses grazed at 
their ease attended, perhaps only by a negro boy. He had 
calves, hogs, and poultry in abundance for the use of his 
family. He could turn his able laborers to the field, and exert 
all their energies in raising the staple commodities of the 
country. Having provision from domestic resources, he could 
apply his whole crop for the purposes of answering the de- 
mands of the merchant and money lender. He calculated 
that his annual produce would not only answer all demands, 
but bring aa addition to his capital, and enable him to clear 
and cultivate more land. In proportion as the merchants ex- 
tended credit to the planters, and supplied them with laborers, 
the profits of their plantations increased. 

The lands which were cultivated in South Carolina, for the 
first eighty years after the settlement of the province, were, for 
the most part, situated on or near navigable creeks or rivers. 
The planters who lived fifty miles from the capital were at 
little more expense, in sending their provisions and produce 
to its market, than those who lived within five miles of it. 
The town was supplied with plenty of provisions, and its 
neighborhood prevented from enjoying a monopoly of its 
market. By this general and unlimited competition, the 
price of provisions was kept low. While the money arising 
from them circulated equally and universally through the 
country, it contributed, in return, to its improvement. The 
planters had not only water carriage to the market for their 
staple commodities, but, on their arrival, the merchant again 
committed them to the general tide of commerce, and re- 
ceived, in return, the valuable commodities of every clime. 

The Carolinians all this time received protection to trade, a 
ready market, drawbacks and bounties from the mother coun- 
try. The duties laid on many articles of foreign manufac- 
ture, on their importation into Britain, were drawn back on 
their exportation to the colonies. These drawbacks were 
always in favor of the consumers, and supplied the provin- 
cial markets with foreign goods nearly as cheap as if they 
had been immediately imported from the places where they 
were manufactured. Besides, upon the arrival of such goods 
in the country, the planters commonly had twelve months 
credit from the provincial merchant who was satisfied with 
payment once in the year from all his customers. To the 
consumers in Carolina, East India goods, German manufac- 
tures, Spanish, Portugal, Madeira and Fayal wines came 
cheaper than to those in Great Britain. Coal, salt, and other 


articles, brought by way of ballast, have sometimes sold for 
less in Charlestown than in London. 

The colonists were also allowed bounties on several articles of 
produce exported. For the encouragement ofher colonies, Great 
Britain laid high duties on such as were imported from foreign 
countries, and gave the colonists premiums on the same com- 
modities. The bounties on naval stores, indigo, hemp and 
raw silk proved an encouragement to industry, and all termi- 
nated in favor of the planters. The colonial merchants en- 
joyed perfect freedom in their trade with the West Indies, 
where they found a convenient and most excellent market 
for Indian corn, rice, lumber and salt provisions. In return 
they had , rum, sugar, coffee and molasses cheaper than their 
fellow subjects in the mother country. 

Great Britain laid the colonists under some restraints with 
respect to their domestic manufactures and their trade to 
foreign ports. Though this policy affected the more northern 
colonies, it was not prejudicial to Carolina. It served to direct 
the views of the people to the culture of lands, which was 
more profitable both to themselves and the mother country. 
Though they had plenty of beaver skins, and a few hats were 
manufactured from them, yet the price of labor was so high 
that the merchant could send the skins to England, import 
hats made of them, and undersell the manufacturers of Caro- 
lina. The province also furnished some wool and cotton, but 
before they could be made into cloth, they cost the consumers 
more money than the merchant demanded for the same goods ' 
imported. It afforded leather, but boots and shoes made from 
it at home were of an inferior quality, and often dearer than 
the same articles imported from Britain. In like manner, 
wit?i respect to many other commodities, it was for the ad- 
vantage of the province, as well as the mother country, to 
export the raw materials and import the goods manufac- 
tured. Cultivation was, therefore, the most profitable employ- 
ment. It was the interest of such a flourishing colony to be 
always in debt to Great Britain, for the more laborers were 
sent the more rapidly the colony advanced in riches. If, from 
an unfavorable season, the planters were rendered unable to 
pay for the slaves they had purchased, the merchants gener- 
ally indulged them another year, and sometimes allowed th'em 
to increase their debt by addititional purchases. This was 
often found the most certain method of obtaining payment 
In like manner the merchant had indulgence from England, 
the primary source of credit. By these forbearances the plan- 
ter preserved, and often increased, his capital, while the differ- 
ence of interest between the mother country and the province, 

ROYAL GOVERNMENT, 1720 1776. 69 

amounting at first to five, and always to three, per cent., was 
clear gain to the merchants. 

Such was the general course of prosperity with which the 
royal province of South Carolina was Ijlessed in the interval 
between the termination of the proprietary government in 
1719, and the American revolution in 1776. No colony was 
ever better governed The first and second Georges were 
nursing fathers to the province. Tliey performed to it the 
full orbed duty of Kings, and their paternal care was returned 
with the most ardent love and affection of their subjects in 
Carolina. The advantages were reciprocal. The colonists 
enjoyed the protection of Great Britain, and in return she had 
a monopoly of their trade. The mother country received 
great benefit from this intercourse, and the colony, under her 
protecting care, became great and happy. In South Carolina 
an enemy to the Hanoverian succession, or to the British 
Constitution, was scarcely known. The inhabitants were 
fond of British manners even to excess. They, for the most 
part, sent their children to England or Scotland for education, 
and spoke of these countries under the endearing appellation 
of home. They were enthusiasts for the government under 
which they had grown up and flourished. All ranks and 
orders of men gloried in their connection with the mother 
country, and in being subjects of the same king. The laws 
of the British Parliament, confining their trade for the benefit 
of the protecting parent state, were generally and cheerfully 
obeyed. Few countries have, at any time, exhibited so strik- 
ing an instance of public and private prosperity as appeared 
in South Carolina between the years 1725 and 1775. The 
inhabitants of the province were, in that half century, in- 
creased seven fold. None were indigent but the idle and un- 
fortunate. Personal independence was fully within the reach 
of every man who was healthy and industrious. All were 
secure in their persons and property. They were also con- 
tented 'with their colonial state, and wished not for the smallest 
change in their political constitution. 

In the midst of these enjoyments, and the most sincere 
attachment to the mother country, to their king and his gov- 
erntnent, the people of South Carolina, without any original 
design on their part, were, step by step, drawn into a defen- 
sive revolutionary war, which involved them in every species 
of difficulty, and finally dissevered them from the parent state. 

But before we proceed to relate these interesting events, 
some more early periods of the history of South Carolina 
must be surveyed. 



FROM 1670 TO 1776. 

Contest with Spaniards. 

All the forms of goverairient, hitherto of force in Carolina, 
agreed in this particular : that every subject or citizen should 
also be a soldier. There was a nightly watch maintained in 
Charlestown ever since it was five years old, and, for the most 
part, by men hired for the purpose. But in all other times 
and situations the defence of the country rested solely on the 
militia, except in cases of great pressing and continued danger. 
The laws required every freeman of a suitable age, with a 
few necessary exemptions, to be enrolled as a member of some 
militia company and to be equipped and trained for public 
service. The necessity of this was so evident, that till about 
the middle of the 18th century, the practice was common and 
the men were enjoined by law to carry their arms to church.* 
The people could not brook a standing army in time of peace, 
but were required to be always ready to defend themselves. 
This was indispensably necessary, in their peculiar situation. 
The province was not only constantly exposed to internal 
danger ; but its peace was early and repeatedly disturbed by 
Spaniards, Indians, and pirates. Carolina, with the English, 
was the southern part of Virginia; with the Spaniards it was 
the northern part of Florida. Both claimed by virtue of prior 
discovery, but the title of the Spaniards was supposed to be 
strengthened by a grant of the territory from his holiness the' 
pope. Though the validity of the title of either could not be 
supported, before an impartial tribunal, yet a century passed 
away and much mischief was done before the controversy 
was compromised. The Spaniards considering the settlement 
of Carolina as an encroachment on Florida, were not scrupu- 
lous about the means of inducing its relinquishment. They 
encouraged indented servants to leave their masters, and fly 
to St. Augustine for protection. They impressed the Indians 
with unfavorable ideas of the English heretics, and encouraged 

* The province was saved from much impending distress and desolation by an 
armed congregation sallying forth from the Presbyterian church at Wiltown in 
1740, as has been related. The practice of going armed to churchj was revived 
for a short time in the revolutionary war. For fifleen or twenty years before thai 
event, and ever since, it has not been observed; but a formal repeal of the law 
cannot be recollected. 


the former to obstruct the settlements of the latter. To these 
unneighborly acts were added occasional hostilities. In about 
three years after the first settlement of the province an armed 
party of Spaniards, from the garrison of St. Augustine, ad- 
vanced as far as the island of St. Helena to dislodge or destroy 
the settlers. Fifty volunteers under the command of Colonel 
Godfrey marched against the invaders, who, on his approach, 
evacuated the island and retreated to Florida. 

About the year 1682, Lord Cardross led a small colony 
from Scotland which settled on Port Royal Island. These 
claimed, by an agreement with the proprietors, a co-ordinate 
authority with the Governor and Council at Charlestown ; but 
their claims were overruled. The Spaniards sent an armed 
force in 1786, and dislodged these solitary scotch settlers and 
most of them returned to their native country.* 

These hostilities of the Spaniards were retaliated. In 1702, 
Governor James Moore proposed to the Assembly of Carolina 
an expedition against the Spanish settlement at St. Augustine. 
A majority of the Assembly declared for the expedition, and 
two thousand pounds sterling were voted for the service. 
They agreed to raise six hundred provincial militia, an equal 
number of Indians were procured, and vessels impressed to 
carry the forces. Port Royal was fixed on as the place of 
rendezvous, and from it in September 1702 the Governor at 
the head of his warriors embarked. 

In the plan of operations it had been agreed that Colonel 
Daniel, with a detached party, should go by the inland pas- 
sage and make a descent on the town from the land ; while 
the Governor, with the main body, should proceed by sea and 
block up the harbor. Colonel Daniel accordingly advanced 
against the town, entered and plundered it before the Govenor 
arrived. But the Spaniards having laid up provisions for four 
months in the castle, retired to it with their money and most 
valuable effects. Upon the arrival of Governor Moore the 
place was invested with a force which the Spaniards could 
not face, and therefore kept themselves shut up in their strong- 
hold. The Governor finding it impossible to dislodge them, 
without suitable artillery, dispatched colonel Daniel with a 
sloop to Jamaica to bring cannon, bombs, and mortars for 
attacking the castle. In the meantime the appearance of two 
Spanish ships, one of twenty-two guns, and the other of six- 
teen, near the mouth of the harbor, induced the Governor to 
raise the siege, abandon his ships and retreat to Carolina by 
land. The Spaniards in the garrison were not only relieved 

* The governmental seal, used for this settlement, -was carried to Scotland ; 
but, in the year, 1793, it was politely returned by the Earl of Buchan as an object 
of curiosity, a ad is now placed in the Museum of the Charleston Library. 


but the ships, provisions, and ammunition, belonging to the 
Carohnians, fell into their hands. Colonel Daniel, on his re- 
turn, standing in for the harbor of St. Augustine, found to his 
surprise the siege raised, and with difficulty escaped from the 

The Governor lost no more than two men in this expedition, 
yet it entailed on the colony a debt of six thousand pounds 
sterling which, at that period, was a grievous burden. The 
provincial assembly met to concert ways and means for dis- 
charging it. A bill was brought in for stamping bills of credit, 
to answer the public exigence, which were to be sunk in 
three years by a duty on liquors, skins, and furs. This was 
the first paper money issued in the province, and, for five or 
six years, it passed at the same value and rate with the ster- 
ling money of England. Thus war, debt, and paper money, 
were coeval in Carolina; and connected as cause and effect 
in the order in which they are mentioned. 

Four years after the termination of Moore's expedition 
against St. Augustine the Spaniards and French, then at war 
with Great Britain, projected a combined attack on Charles- 
town ; with a view of recovering the province claimed by the 
Spaniards as a part of Florida. Sir Nathaniel Johnson, then 
Governor, had been a military man and was well qualified to 
conduct its defence. No sooner had he received intelligence 
of the designs of the enemy, than he set every one to work 
upon the fortifications, appointed a nxxmber of gunners to each 
bastion, and diligently trained the men to the use of arms. A 
small fort, called fort Johnson, was erected on James Island 
and several cannon mounted thereon. Intrenchments were 
made on White Point, and other suitable places. A guard 
was stationed on Sullivan's Island, with orders to kindle a 
number of fires opposite the town equal to the number of ships 
they might see on the coast. 

Carolina was at this juncture the southern frontier of the 
British empire in America; and though it had acquired some 
degree of strength, was in a feeble state to resist an enemy of 
force. From its situation there was reason to apprehend that 
the French and Spaniards would attack it, as it would be an 
easier conquest than the more populous northern settlements. 
Before this time a plan had been concerted at the Havanna, 
for invading it. Monsieur Le Feboure, with a french frigate 
and four armed sloops, encouraged and assisted by the Spanish 
Governor of Cuba, sailed for Charlestown. To facilitate the 
conquest. Monsieur Le Feboure had directions to touch at St. 
Augustine and carry from it such a force as he judged ade- 
quate to the enterprise. Upon his arrival there, he received 
intelligence of an epidemical distemper, which raged at Charles- 


town and had destroyed a vast number of inhabitants. In- 
stead of discouraging, this animated him to proceed with 
greater expedition. He took on board a considerable number 
offerees and sailed for Charlestown. The appearance of five 
seperate smokes on Sullivan's Island, announced to the in- 
habitants that the same number of ships was observed on the 

Sir Nathaniel Johnson being at his plantation, several miles 
from town, Lieut. Col. Wm. Rhett, commanding officer of the 
militia, immediately ordered the whole of the inhabitants to 
be put under arms. A messenger was dispatched with the 
news to the Governor, and letters were sent to all the captains 
of the militia in the country ordering them to fire alarm guns — 
raise their companies — and to march with all possible expedi- 
tion to the assistance of Charlestown. 

In the evening the enemy's fleet came near to the bar; but, 
as the passage was intricate and dangerous, they hovered on 
the coast all night within sight of land. Having come to an 
anchor, they employed their boats all the next day in sounding 
the south bar. This delay afforded time for the militia in 
the country to march to town. 

Governor Johnson, on his arrival, found the inhabitants in 
great consternation ; but his presence, as a man of known 
bravery and military capacity, inspired them with confidence 
and resolution. He proclaimed martial law at the head of 
the militia — issued the necessary orders for their conduct, and 
sent to the Indian tribes in alliance with the colony to come 
immediately to his assistance. As a contagious distemper 
was said to rage in Charlestown, the Governor judged it im- 
prudent to expose his men unnecessarily to danger; and 
therefore held his headquarters about half a mile distant from 
the town. In the evening, a troop of horse commanded by 
Captain George Logan, and two companies of foot under the 
command of Major George Broughton, reached the capital 
and kept watch during the night. The next morning a com- 
pany from James Island, commanded by Captain Drake, 
another from Wands under Captain Fenwicke, and five more 
commanded by Captains Cantey, Lynch, Kearn, Longbois, 
and Seabrook, joined the other militia. The principal force 
of the province with the Governor at their head, was now 
assembled in and near Charlestown. 

The day following, the enemy's four ships and a galley came 
over the bar, and stood directly for the town, having the ad- 
vantages of a fair wind and strong tide. When they had 
advanced so far up the river as to discover the fortifications, 
they cast anchor a little above Sallivan's Island. The Gov- 
ernor observing their approach towards the town, marched his 


men into it to receive them ; but finding they had stopped by 
the way, he had time to call a council of war; in which it was 
agreed to put some great guns on board of such ships as were 
in the harbor, and employ the sailors, in their own "way, for 
the better defence of the town. William Rhett, a man of cour- 
age and conduct, received a commission to be Vice-Admiral 
of this little fleet ; and hoisted his flag on board the Crown 

The enemy sent up a flag of truce to the Governor to sum- 
mon him to surrender. George Evans, who commanded 
Granville bastion, received their messenger on his landing from 
the boat, and conducted him bliiidfolded into the fort, until 
the Governor was in readiness to receive him. In the mean- 
time having drawn up his men in such a manner as to make 
them appear to the greatest advantage, he admitted the French 
officer; and having first shown him one fort full of men, con- 
ducted him by a different route to another, where the same 
men sent by a shorter way were drawn up before hand. 
Having given him a view of his strength, he demanded the 
purport of his message ; the officer told him that he was sent by 
Monsieur Le Feboure, Admiral of the French fleet, to demand 
a surrender of the town and country, and of their persons as 
prisoners of war ; adding that his orders allowed him no 
more than one hour for an answer. Governor Johnson re- 
plied, " There was no occasion for one minute to answer that 
message ; that he held the town and country for the Queen of 
England, and could depend on his men, who would sooner 
die than surrender themselves prisoners of war ; that he was 
resolved to defend the place to the last drop of his blood ;" 
and informed the officer " that he might go when he pleased 
and acquaint Monsieur Le Feboure with his resolution." 

The day following, a party of the enemy went ashore on 
James Island and burnt some houses. Another party, con- 
sisting of an hundred and sixty men, landed on the opposite 
side of the river and burnt two vessels in Dearby's creek, and 
set fire to a store-house. Sir Nathaniel Johnson ordered Cap- 
tain Drake and his company, with a small party of Indians 
to James Island, to oppose the enemy on that side. Drake 
marched against them, but before he could bring up his men 
the Indians, who ran through the woods with their usual im- 
petuosity, had driven the invaders to their boats. At the same 
time advice was brought to town, that the party who landed 
on Wands neck had killed a number of hogs and cattle and 
were feasting on the plunder. To prevent their farther pro- 
gress into the country. Captain Cantey, with one hundred 
chosen men, was ordered to pass the river privately in the 
night and watch their motions. Before break of day the 


Captain came up and finding them in a state of security, sur- 
rounded and attacked them hriskly. They were thrown into 
confusion and fled. Some were killed, others drowned in 
attempting to make their escape, and the remainder surren- 
dered prisoners of war. 

The Carolinians, encouraged and animated by their success 
at land, determined to try their fortune by sea. Accordingly 
William Rhett set sail with his fleet of six small ships, and 
proceeded down the river to the place where the enemy rode at 
anchor ; but the French perceiving this fleet standing towards 
them weighed anchor and sailed over the bar. For some days 
nothing more was heard of them. The Governor ordered Cap- 
tain Watson, of the Sea Flower, out to sea to examine whether 
the coast was clear. The Captain returned without seeing 
the enemy ; but observing some men on shore, whom they 
had left behind, he took them on board and brought them to 
town. These men assured the Governor that the French were 
gone. In consequence thereof orders were given for the cessa- 
tion of martial law, and the inhabitants began to rejoice at 
their happy deliverance. 

But before night, advice was brought that a ship of force 
was seen in Sevvee Bay, and that a number of armed men 
had landed from her. Upon examination of the prisoners the 
Governor found that the French expected a ship of war with 
Monsieur Arbuset, their General, and a reinforcement of two 
hundred men to their assistance. The Governor ordered 
Captain Fenwicke to pass the river and march against them 
by land, while Rhett with a Dutch privateer and an armed 
Bermuda sloop sailed round by sea to meet him at Sewee 
Bay. Captain Fenwicke came up with the enemy and briskly 
charged them. Though advantageously posted, after a few 
voliies, they gave way and retreated to their ship. Rhett soon 
after came to Fenwicke's assistance, and the French ship 
struck without firing a shot. The Vice Admiral returned to 
Charlestown with his prize and ninety prisoners. 

Thus ended Monsieur Le Feboure's invasion of Carolina ; 
little to his own honor as a commander, and less to the credit 
and courage of his men. It is probable he expected to find the 
province in a weak and defenceless situation, and that the 
Governor would instantly surrender on his appearance before 
the town. But he was deceived. Governor Johnson was a man 
of approved courage and conduct. The militia undertook the 
various enterprises assigned to them with the spirit of men, and 
success crowned their endeavers. Out of eight hundred who 
came against the colony, near three hundred were killed and 
taken prisoners. Among the latter were Monsieur Arbuset, 
their Commander-in-Chief by land, with several sea ofiicers ; 


who, together, offered ten thousand pieces of eight for their 
ransom. On the other hand, the loss sustained by the provin- 
cial militia was incredibly small. The Governor publicly 
thanked them for the unanimity and courage they had shown 
in repelling the invaders. The proprietors were so highly 
pleased with Johnson's good conduct that they made him a 
present of a large tract of land by a special grant in terms the 
most flattering and honorable.* 

Though hostilities had been carried on by the Spaniards 
against Carolina, to reclaim it as a part of Florida, the bound- 
aries between these provinces were neither clearly marked 
nor well understood ; for they had never been settled by any 
public agreement between England and Spain. To prevent ne- 
groes escaping to the Spanish territories the Carolinians had 
built a fort on the forks of the river Alatamaha, and supported 
a small garrison in it. This gave offence to the Governor of 
St. Augustine, who complained of it to the court of Madrid as 
an encroachment on the dominions of Spain. The Spanish 
Ambassador at London lodged the complaint before the court 
of Britain, and demanded that orders should be sent to de- 
molish the fort. It was agreed that the Governors in America 
on both sides should meet in an amicable manner, and adjust 
the respective boundaries between the British and Spanish 
dominions in that quarter. Accordingly Don Francisco Me- 
nandez and Don Joseph de Rabiero, in behalf of Spain, came 
to Charlestown to hold a conference on the subject with the 
executive officers of the government. At their meeting Ar- 
thur Middleton, President of the Council, demonstrated to the 
Spanish deputies that the fort, against which complaint had 
been made was built within the bounds of the charter granted 
to the proprietors and that the pretensions of Spain to the 
lands in question were groundless. At the same time he told 
them that the fort, on the river Alatamaha, was erected for de- 
fending themselves and their property against the depredations 
of Indians living under the jurisdiction of Spain. Mr. Mid- 

* This land and the original special grant are now in the possession of Joseph 
Maniganlt. This repelled invasion was ridiculed in a humorous burlesque poetn 
written above one hundred years ago in French, by one of the garrison, probably 
a French refugee. The poet makes the Governor, in his answer to the inva- 
ders, requiring an immediate surrender of the town and country to say as fol- 
lows : 

" Que s'ils altaquoient notre camp, 

lis y trOLiveroient bien miUe hommes, 

Qui ne se battroient pas de pommes, 

Outre cinq cens Refuges 

Que la France a repudies, 

Et reduits presque a l'Indigen9e, 

Qui ne respiroient que vengence, 

Ce qu'on leur feroit eprouver, 

S'ils ozoient nous venir trouver." 


dleton then begged to know their reasons " for protecting 
felons and debtors that fled to them from Carohna, and for 
encouraging negroes to leave their masters and take refuge at 
St. Augustine, while peace subsisted between the two crowns." 
The deputies replied, "that the Governor of Florida would 
deliver up all felons and debtors ; but had express orders, for 
twenty years past, to detain all slaves who should fly to 
St. Augustine for liberty and protection." Mr. Middleton de- 
clared that he looked on such orders as a breach of national 
honor and faith, especially, as negroes were as much private 
property in Carolina as houses and lands." The deputies an- 
swered, " that the design of the King of Spain was not to 
injure any one, for he had ordered compensation to be made 
to the masters of such slaves in money; but that his humanity, 
and religion, enjoined him to issue such orders for the sake of 
converting slaves to the Christian faith." The conference 
ended to the satisfaction of neither party, and matters re- 
mained as they were ; but soon after the English fort, near 
the Alatamaha, was burned to the ground ; and the southern 
frontiers of Carolina were again left naked and defenceless. 

As no final agreement with respect to the limits of the two 
provinces had been concluded, the Indians, in alliance with 
Spain, continued to harrass the British settlements. Scalping 
parties of the Yamassees frequently penetrated into Carolina — 
killed white men, and carried off every negro they could find. 
Though the owners of slaves had been allowed from the Span- 
ish government a compensation in money for their losses, yet 
few of them ever received it. At length. Colonel Palmer 
resolved to make reprisals on the plunderers. For this pur- 
pose, he gathered together a party of militia and friendly 
Indians, consisting of about three hundred men, and entered 
Florida, with a resolution of spreading desolation throughout 
the province. He carried his arms as far as the gates of St. 
Augustine, and compelled the inhabitants to take refuge in 
their castle. Scarce a house or hut in the colony escaped the 
flames. He destrojred theii; provisions in the fields — drove off 
their cattle, hogs and horses, and left the Floridians little pro- 
perty, except what was protected by the guns of their fort. 
By this expedition, he demonstrated to the Spaniards their 
weakness; and that the Carohnians, whenever they pleased, 
could prevent the cultivation and settlement of their province 
so as to render the improvement of it impracticable on any 
other than peaceable terms with their neighbors. 

Soon after these events, the French in Louisiana advanced 
nearer to Carolina. They erected a stronghold, called fori 
Alabama, on Mobile river, which was well situated for opening 
and carrying on a correspondence with the most powerful 


nations, contiguous to the southern British colonies. The 
Carolinians had good reason to be on their guard against the 
influence of these new and enterprising neighbors. The tribes 
of upper creeks, whose hunting lands extended to the fort, 
were soon won over by promises and largesses to form an alli- 
ance with the French. The Cherokees lived at a greater 
distance ; yet by means of the creeks, and other emissaries, 
the French endeavored to bring them over to their interest 
The river Mississippi, being navigable several hundred miles 
from its mouth, opened a communication with the Chocktaws, 
Chickesaws, and other nations residing near it. The French 
had, therefore, many convenient opportunities of seducing 
these Indians from their alliance with Britain. The Presi- 
dent of the Council of Carolina employed Captain Tobias 
Fitch among the Creeks, and Colonel George Chicken among 
the Cherokees, to keep these tribes steady and firm to the Brit- 
ish interest These agents found no small difficulty in coun- 
teracting the influence of French policy. From this period, 
the British and French settlers in America became competitors 
for power and influence over the Indian nations. And the 
Carolinians were farther from peace and safety than ever. 
The French supplied these savages with tomahawks, muskets, 
and ammunition, by which means they laid aside the bow 
and arrow, and became more dangerous and formidable ene- 
mies than they ever had been. 

By the settlement of Georgia, in 1733, Carolina ceased to 
be a frontier; but the Spaniards continued to seduce their 
negroes, and to do other injurious acts. War being declared 
in 1739, by Great Britain, against Spain, an opportunity was 
given for attempting the reduction of the fort at St. Augustine, 
which was considered as the only effectual means of securing 
the two most southern provinces. General Oglethorpe, of 
Georgia, projected an expedition for that purpose. He com- 
municated his design by letter to William Bull, Lieutenant 
Governor of South Carolina, and requested the aid of that 
province in the common cause. Bull laid the letter before 
the provincial assembly, recommending to raise a regiment 
and to give all possible assistance to the enterprise. The As- 
sembly favored the proposal. 

General Oglethorpe urged the speedy execution of his pro- 
ject with a view to surprise the enemy before they could 
receive a supply of provisions. He declared that no personal 
toil or danger should discourage his utmost exertions to free 
Carolina from suc^h neighbors as instigated their slaves to 
massacre fhem and publicly protected them after such bloody 
attempts. To concert measures with the greater secrecy and 
expedition, he went to Charlestown and laid before the Legis- 


latiire an estimate of the force, arms, ammunition, and pro- 
visions which he judged requisite for the expedition. In 
consequence of which the Assembly voted one hundred and 
twenty thousand pounds, Carolina money, for the service of 
the war. A regiment, consisting of four hundred men was 
raised partly in Virginia and partly in North and South Carolina, 
and the command was given to Colonel Vanderdussen. Indians 
were called into service from the different tribes in alliance 
with Britain. Vincent Price, commander of the ships of war 
on that station, agreed to assist with a naval force, consisting 
of four ships of twenty guns each and two sloops. General 
Oglethorpe appointed the mouth of St. John's river, on the 
Florida shore, for the place of rendezvous. 

On the 9th of May, 1740, he passed over to Florida with 
four hundred select men of his regiment, and a considerable 
party of Indians; and on the day following invested Diego, 
a small fort, about twenty-five miles from St. Augustine. This, 
after a short resistance, surrendered by capitulation. In it he 
left a garrison of sixty men, under the command of Lieuten- 
ant Dunbar, and returned to the place of general rendezvous, 
where he was joined by Colonel Vanderdussen with the Car- 
ohna regiment, and a company of Highlanders, under the 
command of Captain M'lntosh. By this time, six, Spanish 
half-gall(?ys, with long brass nine-pounders, and two sloops 
loaded with provisions, had got into the harbor of St. Augus- 
tine. A few days afterwards the General marched with his 
whole force, consisting of above two thousand men, regulars, 
provincials and Indians, to fort Moosa, situated within two 
miles of St. Augustine. On his approach, the Spanish garrison 
evacuated this post and retired into the town. 

Notwithstanding the dispatch of the British army, the 
Spaniards had collected all the cattle in the neighboring 
woods, and drove them into the town; and the General found 
that more difficulty would attend the enterprise than he at 
first expected. The castle was built of soft stone, with four 
bastions ; the curtain was sixty yards in length ; the parapet 
nine feet thick ; the rampart twenty feet high, casemated un- 
derneath for lodgings, arched over, and made bomb proof. 
Fifty pieces of cannon were mounted, several of which were 
twenty-four pounders. The town was also intrenched with 
ten salient angles, on each of which some small cannon were 
mounted. The garrison consisted of seven hundred regulars, 
two troops of horse, four companies of armed negroes, besides 
the militia of the province, and Indians. 

The general perceived that an attempt to take the castle by 
storm would cost him dear, and therefore changed his plan of 
operations. With the assistance of the ships of war, which 


were lying at anchor off St. Augustine bar, he resolved to turn 
the siege into a blocl^ade, to shut up every channel by which 
provisions could be conveyed to the garrison. For this pur- 
pose, he left Colonel Palmer with ninety-five Highlanders and 
forty-two Indians at fort Moosa, with orders to scour the woods 
and intercept all supplies of cattle .from the country by land. 
He at the same time ordered him to camp every night in a dif- 
ferent place — to keep strict watch around his camp, and by all 
means to avoid coming to action. He sent Colonel Vander- 
dussen, with the Carolina regiment, over a small creek, to take 
possession of a neck of land called Point Qu artel, more than 
a mile distant from the castle, with orders to erect a battery 
upon it ; while he himself with his regiment, and the greatest 
part of the Indians, embarked in boats and landed on the 
island of Auastatia. From this island, the General resolved 
to bombard the town. Captain Pierce stationed his ships so 
that the Spaniards were cut off from all supplies by sea. Bat- 
teries were erected, and several cannon mounted on Anastatia 
Island. General Oglethorpe then summoned the Spanish Gov- 
ernor to surrender; but the Don sent him for answer "that he 
would be glad to shake hands with him in his castle." 

The opportunity of surprising the place being lost, Ogle- 
thorpe had no other method left but to attack it at the distance 
in which he then stood. For this purpose he opened his bat- 
teries against the castle, and at the same time threw a number 
of shells into the town. The fire was returned with equal 
spirit both from the Spanish fort,andfrom six half-galleys in the 
harbor; but so great was the distance, that though they con- 
tinued the cannonade for several days, litttle execution was 
done on either side. 

In the meantime the Spanish Commander, observing the 
besiegers embarrassed, sent out a detachment against Colonel 
Palmer which surprised him at fort Moosa; and while his 
party was asleep, cut them almost entirely to pieces. A few 
that accidentally escaped went over in a small boat to the 
Carolina regiment at Point Quartel. About the same time, 
the blockading vessel stationed at the Metanzas being ordered 
oif, some small vessels from the Havanna with provisions and 
a reinforcement of men got into St. Augustine to the rehef of 
the garrison. A party of Creeks brought four Spanish prisoners 
to the General, who informed him that the garrison had re- 
ceived seven hundred men and a large supply of provisions. 
All prospects of starving the enemy being lost, the army began 
to despair of forcing the place to surrender. The Carohna 
troops, enfeebled by the heat — despairing of success— and 
fatigued by fruitless efforts, marched away in large bodies. 
The navy being short of provisions, and the usual season of 


hurricanes approaching, the Commander judged it imprudent 
to hazard his majesty's ships by remaining longer on that 
coast. The General was sick of a fever — his regiment ex- 
hausted with fatigue and rendered unfit for action by disease. 
These combined disasters made it necessary to abandon the 
enterprise. Oglethorpe with extreme regret fell back to Fred- 
erica. . On the 13th of August, the Carolina regiment returned 
to Charlestown. Though not one of them had been killed by 
the enemy, their number was reduced fourteen by disease and 

Thus ended the expedition against St. Augustine, to the 
great disappointment of both Georgia and Carolina. Many 
reflections were afterwards thrown out against General Ogle- 
thorpe, for his conduct during the whole enterprise. He, on 
the other hand, declared he had no confidence in the pro- 
vincials for that they refused obedience to his orders and at 
last abandoned his camp and retreated to Carolina. The place 
was so strongly fortified, both by nature and art, that probably 
the attempt must have failed though it had been conducted 
by the ablest officer, and executed by the best disciplined 
troops. The miscarriage was particularly injurious to Carolina, 
having not only subjected the province to a great expense, but 
also left it in a worse situation than it was before the attempt. 

This invasion of Florida was soon retaliated. The Spaniads 
had not yet relinquished their claim to the southern extreme 
of the British colonies. They therefore prepared an arma- 
ment to expel the English settlers from Georgia. There is 
reason to believe that if they had succeeded against that infant 
province, Carolina would have become the scene of their next 
operations. To accomplish those purposes an armament was 
prepared at the Havanna ; two thousand forces, commanded 
by Don Antonio de Rodondo, embarked from that port under 
convoy of a strong squadron and arrived at St. Augustine in 
May. Oglethorpe, on receiving intelligence of their arrival in 
Florida, sent advices of it to Governor Glen of Carolina and 
made all possible preparations for a vigorous resistance. With 
his regiment, a few rangers, highlanders, and Indians, he fixed 
his headquarters at Frederica and waited in expectation of a 
reinforcement from Carolina. About the last of June the 
Spanish fleet, amounting to thirty-two sail and carrying above 
three thousand men under the command of Don Manuel de 
Monteano, came to anchor off' St. Simon's bar. After sounding 
the channel, the Don passed through Jekyl sound, received a 
fire from Oglethorpe at fort Simon's, and proceeded up the 
Alatamaha beyond the reach of his guns. There the enemy 
landed and erected a battery with twenty eighteen-pounders 
mounted on it. Oglethorpe judging his situation at fort Simon's 


to be dangerous, spiked the guns, burst the bombs and cohorns, 
destroyed the stores, and retreated to P'rederica. With a force 
amounting to little more than seven hundred men, exclusively 
of Indians, he could not hope to act but on the defensive 
until the arrival of reinforcements from Carolina. He how- 
ever, employed his Indians, and occasionally his highlanders, 
in scouring the woods — harrassing the outposts of the enemy, 
and throwing impediments in their way. In the attempts of 
the Spanish to penetrate through the woods and morasses to 
reach Frederica, several rencounters took place ; in one of 
■which they lost a Captain and two Lieutenants killed, and 
above one hundred of their men were taken prisoners. Ogle- 
thorpe, learning by an English prisoner who escaped from the 
Spanish camp that a difference subsisted between the troops 
from Cuba and those from St. Augustine occasioning a sep- 
arate encampment, resolved to attack the enemy while thus 
divided. He marched out in the night with the intention of 
surprising the enemy. Having advanced within Iwo miles 
of the Spanish camp he halted his troops, and went forward 
himself with a select corps to reconnoitre the enemy's situa- 
tion. While he was endeavoring to conceal his approach, a 
French soldier discharged his musket and ran into the Spanish 

The General returned to Frederica, and endeavored to effect 
by stratagem what could not be achieved by surprise. Appre- 
hensive that the deserter would discover to the enemy his 
weakness, he wrote to him a letter; desiring him to acquaint 
the Spaniards with the defenceless state of Frederica, and the 
ease with which his small garrison might be cut to pieces. 
He pressed him to bring forward the Spaniards to an attack; 
but if he could not prevail thus far, to use all his art and in- 
fluence to persuade them to stay at least three days more at 
fort Simons; for within that time he should have a reinforce- 
ment of two thousand land forces, with six British ships of 
war. The letter concluded with a caution to the deserter 
against dropping the least hint of Admiral Vernon's meditated 
attack upon St. Augustine; and with assurance that for his 
service, he would be amply rewarded by the British King. 
Oglethorpe gave it to the Spanish prisoner; who for a small 
reward, together with his liberty, promised to deliver it to the 
French deserter. On hts arrival at the Spanish camp, he gave 
the letter, as Oglethorpe expected, to the Commander-in-Chief, 
who instantly put the deserter in irons. This letter perplexed 
and confounded the Spaniards ; some suspecting it to be a strat- 
agem to prevent an attack on Frederica, and others believing 
it to contain serious instructions to direct the conduct of a spy. 
While the Spanish officers were deUberating what measures 


to adopt, an incident, not within the calculation of military- 
skill or the control of human power, decided their counsels. 
Three ships of force, whieh the Governor of South Carolina 
had sent to Oglethorpe's aid, appeared oft' the coast. The 
agreement of this discovery with the contents of the letter, 
convinced the Spanish Commander of its real intention. The 
whole army seized with an instant panic, set fire to the fort 
and precipitately embarked ; leaving several cannon, with a 
quantity of provisions and military stores. Thus in the 
moment of threatened conquest, the infant colony was prov- 
identially saved. Though the Spaniards threatened to renew 
the invasion, yet we do not find that after this repulse they 
ever made any attempt by force of arms to gain possession of 
Georgia or Carolina. 

For the seventy-two years which had passed away since 
the settlement of South Carolina, there had been repeated 
reciprocal invasions of the contiguous Spanish and British 
provinces. Though hostilities occasionally ceased, bickerings 
were always kept alive from the constant irritation of im- 
neighborly, injurious acts; till by the peace of Paris in 1763, 
the two Floridas were ceded by Spain to Great Britain. From 
that period, till the commencement of the revolutionary war, 
the inhabitants of Florida and those of Georgia and Carolina 
being all subjects of the same King, lived in harmony with 
each other. No sooner had the American war began, than 
the former scenes of plunder and devastation recommenced 
between the contiguous provinces. The Floridas by remaining 
a part of the British empire, while Georgia and Carolina, 
became free States, were set in opposition to each other. 
Hostilities, as is usual among the borderers of contending 
governments, were rendered more fierce from the circumstance 
of contiguity. Throughout the war parties from each recipro- 
cally plundered and harrassed the other ; ostensibly on one 
side for the advancement of British, and on the other of Amer- 
ican interests; but in both cases for the private emolument of 
the actors in these disgraceful scenes. Florida also afi'orded 
an entrance through which British agents furnished supplies 
to the Indian tribes adjacent to the new formed American 
States, and by which they encouraged the former to destroy 
the latter. Such will ever be the case in the event of war 
between the sovereigns of Florida, and the citizens of America, 
Happy are the people whose territories are encircled by obvious^ 
natural boundaries, easily distinguished but not easily passed. 



Contests with Indians. 

When South Carolina was settled by the English, it was in 
the occupation of more than twenty nations, or tribes of In- 
dians. Their combined numbers were so considerable that 
had they been guided by a spirit of union, or directed by a 
Common Council, they would have been able at any time, 
for many years after the settlement, to have exterminated the 
new comers. The Indians in their military capacity, were 
not so inferior to the whites as some may imagine. The 
superiority of muskets over bows and arrows, managed by 
Indians in a woody country, is not great. The savage, quick- 
sighted and accustomed to perpetual watchfulness, springs 
from his hiding place, behind a bush, and surprises his enemy 
with the pointed arrow before he is aware of danger. He 
ranges through the trackless forest like the beasts of prey, 
and safely sleeps under the same canopy with the wolf and 
bear. His vengeance is concealed, till he sends the tidings in 
the fatal blow. 

Though the Indians viewed with a jealous eye the encroach- 
ments made on their territorial possessions, they took no effect- 
ual measures for the defence of their property. Finding 
many present conveniences to result from their intercourse 
with the new comers, they acquiesced in their settlement 
Destitute of foresight, they did not anticipate consequences; 
nor did they embitter present enjoyments, with forebodings of 
future evils. To the Indian, a knife, a hatchet, or a hoe, was 
a valuable acquisition. He observed with what facility the 
strangers supplied their many wants by means of the various 
implements they used. The woods fell before the axe — the 
earth opened before the hoe and spade — and the knife was 
useful on numberless occasions. He admired the skill of 
white men in making these articles of ease and profit, and 
voluntarily offered to them his deer skins, the only riches he 
had which could procure them. The love of ease was as 
natural to the one as the other ; and the Indian would rather 
give to the white settler the profits of a year's hunting, than 
be without his instruments. Having obtained these, in pro- 
cess of time he found the tomahawk and musket equally use- 
ful. These he also coveted, and could not rest till he obtained 
them. What was at first only convenient, as his wants in- 
creased became almost necessary. The original bond was 
therefore progressively strengthened and confirmed. As the 
channel of commerce opened, the Indian found that he was 
not only treated with friendship and civility, but that the 


white people were equally fond of his skins, furs, and lands, 
as he was of their gaudy trinkets and various implements. It 
was this connection that induced the native inhabitants ofthe 
forest peaceably to admit strangers, though differing in com- 
plexion, language, and manners, to reside among them and 
to clear and cultivate their lands. 

By these means the first settlers of Carolina readily ob- 
tained foothold among the native owners of the soil] The 
proprietors gave instructions to their tenants to cultivate the 
good will of the aborigines. They also made many presents 
to them, but nothing appears on record like a formal purchase 
or transfer of any part of the low country from the one to the 
other.* Tradition has informed tis that some individuals, 
from a sense of justice, made private purchases from the In- 
dians; but in general a liberty to settle was neither asked nor 
given ; but was taken by white men, and acquiesced in by 
the savages. Private contentions between them were frequent, 
but formal hostilities' on national grounds only occasional; 
many causes of the former existed, and but few of the latter. 
While the English thought little of Indian rights to lands, the 
latter were equally regardless ofthe rights of the former to 
moveable property. (Accustomed to take wild animals where- 
ever found, they could not readily comprehend the crime of 
taking such as were tame.) What the English settler called 
theft, the Indian considered as the exercise of a natural right. 
The ideas of a civilized and savage man were at greater va- 
riance in other important matters. If the former in a fit of 
drunkenness, in the heat of passion, or even in self defence, 
killed or wounded the latter, nothing less than scalp for scalp 
— blood for blood — and death for death, could satisfy the sur- 
viving friends ofthe injured party. If the real criminal could 
not be found, they claimed the right of retaliating on any per- 
son ofthe same color or nation that came in their way. They 
also admitted the voluntary substitution of an innocent person 

* The people of Carolina hold their lands in the southern and western parts of 
the State partly by conquest, and partly by treaties with the aborigines. These 
were valid against the natives. The charters from the sovereigns of England 
were in like manner good against the grantors and other Europeans, but the 
rights ofthe present possessors have a higher origin than either of these sources. 
The earth was made for man, and was intended by the Creator of all things to be 
improved for the benefit of mankind. The land which could support one savage 
iniis mode of living, is capable of supporting five hundred under proper cultiva- 
tion. These wild lands therefore were not the seperate property of the few 
savages who hunted over them, but belonged to the^common stock of mankind. 
The first who possessed a vacant spot, and actually cultivated it for some time, 
ought to be considered as the proprietor of that spot, and they who derive their 
titles from him have a valid right to the same. This doctrine is agreeable to the 
judicial determination of the courts of South Carolina with respect to rights in 
lands derived solely from possession, and is the ground on which the claims of 
Spain to the whole country can be invalidated. 


as an atonement for one that was guilty, who thereupon was 

This conduct and these rules of action, were hostile to peace. 
As the forgiveness of injuries is so far from being any part of 
the creed of Indians, that they consider it as pusillanimous 
not to avenge the death of their friends, one quarrel often 
produced another. Feuds which were originally private and 
personal, soon became public and national, and seldom failed 
to multiply and extend their tragical effects. The Indians 
made very free with the planters' stock, and these as freely 
made use of their arms in defence of their property. Lives 
were frequently lost in these petty contests. If an Indian was 
killed, his countrymen poured their vengeance indiscriminately 
on the innocent and guilty. Governor West found it neces- 
sary to encourage and reward such of the colonists as would 
take the field against them for the public defence. Accordingly 
a price was fixed on every Indian the settlers should take 
prisoner, and bring to Charlestown. These captive savages 
were disposed of to the traders, who sent them to the West 
Indies, and there sold them as slaves. This tratfic was an 
inhuman method of getting rid of troublesome neighbors, yet 
the planters pleaded necessity in its vindication. It is certain 
that the reward for Indian prisoners encouraged bold adven- 
turers, and the sale of them made a profitable branch of trade. 
These advantages weighed with interested persons as an ex- 
tenuation, if not a justification of the practice. The proceeds 
of the Indians, when sold in the West Indies, were generally 
returned to the colonists in rum. This appropriation of the 
gains of the iniquitous traffic was so injurious, that in many 
instances it was doubtful whether the evil ultimately suffered 
or that originally committed was greatest. 

The Carolinians soon found out the policy of setting one 
tribe of Indians against another, on purpose to save themselves. 
By trifling presents they purchased the friendship of some 
tribes whom they employed to carry on war with others. This 
not only diverted their attention from the white settlers, but 
encouraged them to bring captives to Charlestown for the pur- 
pose of transportation to the West Indies. 

A war commenced in the beginning of the year 1680 with 
the Westoes, a very powerful tribe between Charlestown and 
Edisto, which well nigh ruined the infant settlement. The 
cause of hostilities, thus inconvenient and dangerous, may be 
found in injuries which had been mutually given and re- 
ceived. A peace was concluded in the subsequent year, the 
old giving security foi the good conduct of the young. To 
prevent the return of similar mischiefs, and to advance justice, 
the proprietors erected a commission for Maurice Matthews, 


•William Fuller, Jonathan Fits, and John Boone, to decide all 
complaints between the English and the Indians. Some com- 
plaints were made against these commissioners, the particulars 
of which have not reached us. They were discharged and 
the commission abrogated. In lieu thereof the proprietors 
ordered that the Indians within 400 miles of Charlestown, 
should all be taken under their protection. 

The next Indian war was an offensive one on the part of 
the Carolinians. The Apalachian Indians, by their connec- 
tion with the Spaniards, had become troublesome. Governor 
Moore, in 1702 or 1703, marched at the head of a body of 
white men and Indian allies into the heart of their settlements. 
Wherever he went he carried fire and sword. He laid in 
ashes the towns of those tribes who lived between the rivers 
Alatamaha and Savannah ; captured many savages, and 
obliged others to submit to the English government. This 
exertion of power in that quarter filled the savages with terror 
of the British arms, and helped to pave the way for the Eng- 
lish colony afterwards planted between these rivers. The 
Governor received the thanks of the proprietors, wiped off the 
ignominy of his expedition against St. Augustine, and pro- 
cured a number of Indian slaves whom he employed as slaves 
or sold for his own advantage. 

The first serious war with the Indians, in which Carolina 
participated, took place far to the north of Charlestown. This 
appears to have been entered upon by the natives with a view 
of exterminating the English settlers. What they might have 
accomplished in the first years of the settlement, was beyond 
their power when forty-two years had given it strength and 

In the year 1712, a dangerous conspiracy was formed by 
the Indians of North Carolina against the settlers in that 
quarter. The particular cause of the quarrel is unknown; 
probably they were offended at the encroachments made on 
their hunting lands. The powerful tribes of Indians, called 
Corees, Tuscororas, and some others, united and determined 
to murder or expel the European invaders. They carried on 
their bloody design with amazing cunning and profound se- 
cresy. They surrounded their principal town with a wooden 
breast-work, for the security of their own families. There 
the different tribes met together, to the number of twelve hun- 
dred bowmen, and formed their horrid plot. From this place 
of rendezvous they sent out small parties, who entered the 
settlements, under the mask of friendship, by different roads. 
All of them agreed to begin their murderous operations on 
the same night. When that night came they entered the 
planters' houses, demanded provisions, were displeased with 


them, and then murdered men, women and children, withoiu 
mercy or distinction. To prevent a communication of the 
alarm through the settlement, they ran from house to house, 
slaughtering the scattered families wherever they went. None 
of the colonists knew what had befallen their neighbors be- 
fore the barbarians reached their own doors. About Roanoke 
one hundred and thirty-seven settlers fell a sacrifice to savage 
fury in one fatal night. A Swiss Baron, and almost all the 
poor palatines who had lately come into the county, were 
among the slain. Some, who had hid themselves in the 
woods, escaped, and by alarming their neighbors, prevented 
the total destruction of that colony. Every family that sur- 
vived was ordered instantly to assemble at one place, and the 
militia under arms kept watch over them day and night until 
relief arrived. 

Governor Craven lost no time in forwarding a force to their 
assistance. The Assembly voted four thousand pounds for 
the service of the war. A body of militia, consisting of six 
hundred men, under the command of Colonel Barnwell, 
marched against the savages. Two hundred and eighteen 
Cherokees, under the command of Captains Harford and 
Turston; seventy-nine Creeks, under Captain Hastings; forty- 
one Catabaws, under Captain Cantey, and twenty-eight Yamas- 
sees, under Captain Pierce, being furnished with arms, joined 
the Carolinians in this expedition. Hideous and -dreadful 
was the wilderness through which Colonel Barnwell had to 
march. To reach North Carolina in time for the relief of the 
people, the utmost expedition was requisite. It was neither 
possible for his men to carry with them a sufficient quantity 
of provisions, together with arms and ammunition, nor to 
have these things provided at different stages by the way. 
There was no road through the woods upon which either 
horses or carriages could conveniently pass. His army had 
to encounter all manner of hardships and dangers from the 
climate, the wilderness, and the enemy.. In spite of every 
difficulty Barnwell advanced, employing his Indian allies to 
hunt for provisions on the way. At length, having come up 
with the savages, he attacked them with great execution. In 
the first battle he killed three hundred Indians, and took about 
one hundred prisoners. After which the Tuscororas re- 
treated to their town, within a wooden breast-work. There 
they were surrounded, many of them killed, and the remain- 
der forced to sue for peace. Some of Barnwell's men being 
wounded, and others having sufiered much by watching, 
hunger and fatigue, the savages easily obtained their request. 
In this expedition it was computed that Barnwell killed, 
wounded and captured near a thousand Tuscororas. The 


survivors abondoned their country and joined a northern 
tribe of Indians on the Ohio river. Of Barnwell's party, five 
CaroHnians were killed and several wounded. Of his In- 
dians, thirty-six were killed and between sixty and seventy 
wounded. Never had any expedition against the savages in 
Carohna been attended with such difficulties, nor had the 
conquest of any tribe of them ever been more complete. 

Although this expedition was well conducted, and proved 
successful, the expense incurred by it fell heavy on the pro- 
vince, the revenues of which were ill adapted for such enter- 
prises. Great harmony at that time subsisted between the 
Governor and Assembly, and they were well disposed to con- 
cur in every measure for the public good. The stamping of 
bills of credit had been used as the easiest method of defray- 
ing similar expenses. At this time the Legislature thought 
proper to establish a public bank, and issued ^52,000, in bills 
of credit, for answering the exigencies of government and for 
the convenience of domestic commerce. This money was 
lent out at interest on bonds, secured by landed or personal 
security, and made payable by easy instalments. 

In the year 1715 South Carolina was visited with an In- 
dian war so formidable as to threaten its total extirpation. 
The numerous and powerful tribes of Indians called Yamas- 
sees, were the most active in promoting this conspiracy; 
though every tribe in the vicinity were more or less concerned 
in it. The Yamassees possessed a large territory, lying back- 
ward from Port Royal Island, on the northeast side of Savan- 
nah river, which, to this day, is called Indian land. This 
• tribe had long been esteemed by the Carolinians as friends 
and allies. They admitted a number of traders into their 
town, and several times had assisted the settlers in their war- 
like enterprises. 

For twelve months before the war broke out, the traders 
among the Yamassees observed that their chief warriors went 
frequently to St. Augustine, and returned loaded with pres- 
ents. John Fraser, an honest Scotch highlander, who lived 
among the Yamassees and traded with them, had often heard 
these warriors tell with what kindness they had been treated 
at St. Augustine. One had received a hat, another a jacket, 
and a third a coat, all trimmed with silver lace. Some got 
hatchets, others knives, and almost all of them guns and am- 
munition. These warriors told Fraser that they dined with 
the Governor at St. Augustine, and that he was now their 
King, and not the Governor of Carolina. 

About nine days before hostilities commenced, Sanute, an 
Indian warrior attached to Fraser's family, came to his house 
and told his wife that " the English were all wicked heretics, 


and would go to hell, and that the Yamassees would also fol- 
low them if they suflered them to live in their country — that 
now the Governor of St. Augustine was their King — that 
there would be a terrible war with the English, and they only 
waited for the bloody stick to be returned from the Creeks 
before they began it.'' He told them that " the Yamassees, 
the Creeks, the Cherokees, and many other nations, together 
with the Spaniards, were all to engage in it, and advised them 
instantly to fly to Charlestown." Fraser, not a little aston- 
ished at the news, asked him how the Spaniards could go to 
war with the Carolinians while at peace with Great Britain ? 
To which Sanute replied, the Spanish Governor told him that 
there would soon be a war with the English, and again ad- 
vised him to fly with all expedition. Fraser still entertained 
doubts, but finally resolved to get of the way, and fled to 
Charlestown with his family and efiects. 

At the time in which this dark plot was to be put in execu- 
tion. Captain Nairn, agent for Indian afiairs, and many 
traders, resided at Pocotaligo, in a state of false security, in 
the midst of their enemies. The case of the scattered settlers 
on the frontier was equally lamentable, for they had no suspi- 
cions of danger. On the day before the Yamassees began 
their bloody operations. Captain Nairn, and some of the 
traders, observing an uncommon gloom on the countenances 
of the savages, went to their chief men, begging to know the 
cause of their uneasiness, and promising, if any injury had 
been done, to give them satisfaction. The chiefs replied they 
had no complaints to make against any one, but intended to go 
a hunting early the next morning. Captain Nairn accord- 
ingly went to sleep, and the traders passed the night in appa- 
rent tranquility. But next morning, about the break of day, 
being the 15th of April, 1715, all were alarmed with the cries 
of war. The leaders were under arms, calling upon their 
followers, and proclaiming aloud designs of vengeance. The 
young men flew to their arms, and in a few hours massacred 
above ninety persons in Pocotaligo and the neighboring plan- 
tations. Mr. Burrows, a Captain of miUtia, by swimming one 
mile and running ten, after he had received two wounds, es- 
caped to Port Royal and alarmed the town. The inhabitants 
generally repaired on board a vessel in the harbor and sailed 
for Charlestown. But a few families fell into the hands of 
the savages, and by them were either murdered or made 
prisoners of war. While the Yamassees, with the Creeks and 
Apalachians, were advancing against the southern frontiers 
and spreading desolation and slaughter through the province, 
the colonists on the northern borders found the Indians down 
among the settlements in formidable parties. The Caroli- 


nians had entertained hopes of the friendship of the Conga- 
rees, the Catawbas and Cherokees, but soon found that these 
nations had also joined in the conspiracy and declared for 
war. It was computed that the southern division of the 
enemy consisted of above six thousand bowmen, and the 
northern of between six hundred and a thousand. Every 
Indian tribe from Florida to Cape Fear River had joined 
in this confederacy for the destruction of the settlement. The 
dispersed planters had no force to withstand such numbers, but 
each consulting his own safety and that of his family, fled 
in great consternation to the capital. They who came in, 
brought the Governor such different accounts of the numbers 
and strength of the savages, that even the inhabitants of 
Charlestown were doubtful of their safety. The men in it 
were obliged to watch every third night. The most spirited 
measures were pursued both for offence and defence. In the 
muster roll there were no more than twelve hundred men fit to 
bear arms. The Governor proclaimed martial law, laid an em- 
bargo on all ships, and obtained an act of Assembly empow- 
ering him to impress men, arms, ammunition and stores, and 
to arm trusty negroes. Agents were sent to Virginia and 
England to solicit assistance — bills were stamped for the pay- 
ment of the army and other necessary expenses. Robert 
Daniel was appointed Deputy Governor in town, and Charles 
Craven, at the head of the militia, marched to the country 
against the largest body of savages. 

In the meantime the Indians on the northern quarter had 
made an inroad as far as the plantation belonging to John 
Kearne, about fifty miles from Charlestown, and entered his 
house apparently in a peaceable manner, but afterwards mur- 
dered him and every person in it. Thomas Barker, a Captain 
of militia, collected a party consisting of ninety horsemen, and 
advanced against the enemy; but was led by the treachery of 
an Indian guide into a dangerous ambuscade, where a large 
party of Indians lay concealed on the ground. Barker having 
advanced into the middle of them before he was aware of his 
danger, they sprung from their concealment and fired upon his 
men. The captain and several more fell at the first onset, and 
the remainder retreated. After this advantage, a party of four 
, hundred Indians came down as far as Goose creek. Every 

■ family there had fled to town, except in one place where 
, seventy white men and forty negroes had erected a breast- 
i work and resolved to remain and defend themselves. When 

■ the Indians attacked them they were discouraged, and rashly 
;. agreed to terms of peace; having admitted the enemy within 

their works, this whole garrison was barbarously butchered. 
',' The Indians advanced still nigher to town, but meeting with- 


Captain Chicken and the Goose creek militia, they were 
obliged to retreat. 

By this time the Yamassees, with their confederates, had 
spread destruction through the parish of St. Bartholomew, 
and advancing as far as Stono they burned the church at that 
place, together with every house on the plantations by the way, 
John Cochran, his wife and four children, Mr. Bray, his wife, 
two children, and six other persons, having found friends 
among them, were spared for some days, but while attempt- 
ing to make their escape' they were retaken and put to death. 
Such as had no friends among them were tortured in the most 
shocking manner. The Indians made a halt in their progress 
to assist in tormenting their prisoners. 

Governor Craven advanced against the enemy by slow and 
cautious steps. He knew well under what advantages they 
fought among their native thickets, and the various wiles and 
stratagems they made use of in conducting their wars, and 
therefore was watchful against sudden surprises. The fate of 
the whole province depended on the issue of the contest. His 
men had no alternative but to conquer, or die a painful death. 
As he advanced, the straggling parties fled before him until he 
reached Saltcatchers, where they had pitched their great catnp. 
A sharp and bloody battle ensued. Bullets and arrows were 
discharged with destructive effect from behind trees and 
bushes. The Indians made the air resound with their horrid 
yellings and war-whoops. They sometimes gave way, hut 
returned again and again with double fury to the charge. 
The Governor kept his troops close at their heels, and chased 
them from their settlement at Indian Land, until he drove 
them over Savannah river, and cleared the province entirely 
of this formidable tribe of savages. What number of his 
army or of the enemy was killed, we have not been able to 
learn, but in this Indian war four hundred innocent inhab- 
itants of Carolina were murdered. 

The Yamassees, after their defeat and expulsion, went to 
the Spanish territories in Florida, where they were received 
with bells ringing and guns firing, as if they had come victo- 
riously frpm the field. This circumstance, together with the 
encouragement afterwards given them to settle in Florida, 
gave reason to believe that this horrid conspiracy was con- 
trived by Spaniards, and carried on by their encouragement 
and assistance. From the lowest state of despondencv Charles- 
town was suddenly raised to the highest pitch of joy. The 
Governor entered it with some degree of triumph, receiving 
from all, such applause as his courage, conduct and succeS 
justly merited. His prosperous expedition had not only dis- 
concerted the most formidable conspiracy ever formed agairfsi 


the colony, but also placed the inhabitants in a state of greater 
security than they had hitherto enjoyed. From this period 
the Yamassee Indians harbored the most inveterate rancour 
against all Carolinians. Being furnished with arms and 
ammunition from the Spaniards, they often sallied forth in 
small scalping parties, and infested the frontiers. One such 
caught William Hooper, and killed him by cutting oif one 
part of his body after another till he expired. Another sur- 
prised Henry Quinton, Thomas Simmons, and Thomas Par- 
menter, and tortured them to death. Dr. Rose fell into their 
hands, whom they cut across his nose with a tomahawk, and 
left him scalped on the spot, apparently dead; but he hap- 
pily recovered. The Spaniards of St. Augustine, disappointed 
in their design of extirpating the English settlement in Carolina, 
had now no other resource left but to employ the vindictive 
spirit of the Yamassees against the defenceless frontiers of the 
province. In these incursions they were too successful; many 
settlers at different times fell a sacrifice td their insatiable revenge. 
About the year 1718 a scalping party penetrated as far as 
the Euhaw lands ; where having surprised John Levit and 
two of his neighbors, they dispatched them with their toma- 
hawks. They then seized Mrs. Borrows and one of her chil- 
dren, and carried them off. The child by the way began to 
cry, upon which they put him to death. The distressed 
mother being unable to restrain from tears on seeing her child 
murdered, was informed that she must not weep if she de- 
sired to live. Upon her arrival at Augustine she would have 
been immediately sent to prison; but one of the Yamassee 
Kings declared that he knew herfromher infancy tobea good 
woman, and begged, but in vain, that she might be sent home 
to her husband. When Mr. Borrows went to Augustine to 
procure the release of his wife, he also was shut up in prison 
with her, where he soon after died ; but she survived. On her 
return to Carolina she reported to Governor Johnson that the 
Huspah King, who had taken her prisoner, informed her that 
he had orders from the Spanish Governor to spare no white 
man, but to bring every negro alive to St. Augustine ; and that 
rewards were given to Indians for their prisoners to encourage 
them to engage in such murderous and rapacious enterprises. 
At another time a large party of Indians moved towards 
Charlestown, and killed several of the inhabitants. A fort 
was constructed in haste at Wiltown into which the women 
and children were put, with a few old men, for their protec- 
tion. The militia marched out to meet the Indians, but 
'missed them. The Indians soon after appeared in force against 
this party, but finding they would meet with resistance left it to 
!go against the plantations. Governor Craven at the head of a 


body of militia fell in with these Indians near Stone Ferry, at 
the place where Lincoln, in June 1779, attacked the British 
troops under Provost. A general action took place, in which 
the Indians were entirely defeated. This was the lastattemptof 
the Yamassees to disturb the white people to the southward of 
Charlestown. In a few years after the subjugation of the 
Yamassees, South Carolina became a royal province. The 
wise measures adopted by Sir Francis Nicholson, the first royal 
Governor, the treaties afterwards entered into with the Indians 
by Sir Alexander Gumming, the settlement of Georgia, and 
the judicious measures respecting the Indians adopted by Gene- 
ral Oglethorpe,theGovernorsof Georgia and of South Carohna, 
together with the increasing strength of the white people, 
and the decreasing number of the Indians, all concurred in 
preserving peace with the savages, so far that for forty years 
subsequent to the Yamassee war in 1715, the peace of the 
, province was preserved without any considerable or general 

In the year 1752 South Carolina was nearly involved in an 
Indian war, but happily escaped. The Creeks having quar- 
relled with the Cherokees, took their revenge by killing a party 
of the latter near the gates of Charlestown. Some Creek war- 
riors had also scalped a British trader. For these and other out- 
rages, Governor Glen demanded satisfaction at a public con- 
gress held for the purpose. The Indians, by their orator 
Malatchee, apologized for their conduct in a speech that was 
deemed satisfactory, and peace was preserved. 

The war between France and England, which commenced 
in 1754 or 1755, induced both nations to court the friendship 
of the Indians. The French were assiduous in connecting a 
chain of influence with the aborigines, from Canada to the 
mouth of the Mississippi. The British pursued a similar 
line of policy, but less extensive. Governor Glen held a treaty 
with the Cherokees in 1755, ostensibly to brighten the chain 
of friendship, but really to obtain a cession of their lands and 
a liberty to erect forts on the western frontier, as a barrier 
against the French on the southwest. Both were granted, as 
has already been related. 

In the progress of the war the French were defeated in 
Canada, and compelled to abandon Fort Duquesne. After 
they had retreated from the latter down the Ohio, and the Mis- 
sippi, they had the address to involve the Indians in a serious 
war with Carolina. By the reduction of Fort Duquesne, the 
scerje of action was changed from Pennsylvania and Virginia 
to Carolina; and the influence of the French soon appeared 
among the upper tribes of Cherokees. An unfortunate quartfil 
with the Virginians helped to forward their designs. In the 


successful expedition of 1758, against Fort Duquesne, the 
Cherokees had sent considerable parties of warriors to the assist- 
ance of the British army. While the savages were returning 
home from that expedition, through the back parts of Virginia, 
many of them having lost their horses took possession of such 
as came in their way. The Virginians, instead of asserting 
their rights in a legal manner, resented the injury by force of 
arms, and killed twelve or fourteen of these unsuspicious war- 
riors. The Cherokees, with reason, were highly provoked at 
such ungrateful usage; and when they came home, gave a 
highly colored account thereof to their nation. They became 
outrageous. Those who had lost friends and relations resolved 
upon revenge. In vain did the chieftains interpose their au- 
thority. Nothing could restrain the ferocity of the young men. 
The emissaries of France among them added fuel to the flame, 
by declaring that the English intended to kill all the Indian 
men and make slaves of their wives and children. They in- 
flamed their resentments — stimulated them to bloodshed, and 
furnished them with arms and ammunition to revenge them- 
selves. Parties of young warriors took the field, and rushing 
down among the white inhabitants murdered and scalped all 
who came in their way. 

The commanding officer at Fort Prince George despatched a 
messenger to Charlestown, to inform Governor Lyttleton that 
the Cherokees had commenced war. Orders were given to 
the commanders of the militia immediately to collect their 
men, and stand in a posture of defence. The militia of the 
country were directed to rendezvous at Congarees, where the 
Governor resolved to join them and march to the relief of the 
frontier settlements. 

No sooner had the Cherokees heard of these warlike prepa- 
rations, than thirty-two of their chiefs set out for Charlestown 
to settle all differences. Though they could not restrain 
some of their young, men from acts of violence, yet the nation 
in general was inclined to friendship and peace. As they ar- 
rived before the Governor had set out on the intended expedi- 
tion, a council was called; and the chiefs being sent for, Gov- 
ernor Lytdeton, among other things, told them " that he was 
■<vell acquainted with all the acts of hostility of which their 
people had been guilty, and likewise those they intended 
against the English," and enumerated some of them. Then 
he added " that he would soon be in their country, where he 
would let them know his demands and the satisfaction he re- 
quired, which he would certainly take if it was refused. As 
they had come to Charlestown to treat with him as friends, they 
: should go home in safety and not a hair of their heads should 
be touched; but as he had many warriors in arms, in difl"erent 


parts of the province, he could not be answerable for what 
might happen to them unless they marched with his army." 
After this speech was ended Occonostota, who was distinguished 
by the name of the great warrior of the Cherokee nation, began 
to speak by way of reply ; but the Governor having deter- 
mined that nothing should prevent his military expedition, 
declared " he would hear no talk in vindication of his nation, 
nor any proposals with regard to peace." This highly dis- 
pleased the Indians. 

In a few days after this conference the Governor set out for 
Congarees, where he mustered about fourteen hundred men. 
To this place the Cherokees inarched with the army and were 
in appearance contented, but in reality burned with fury 
When the army moved from the Congarees, the chieftains 
were all made prisoners. To prevent their escaping, as two 
had already done, a Captain's guard was mounted over them. 
Being not only deprived of their liberty, but compelled to ac- 
company an enemy going against their families and friends, 
they no longer concealed the resentment raging in their breasts. 
Sullen looks and gloomy countenances, showed that they 
were stung to the heart by such treatment Upon the arrival 
of the army at fort Prince George, the Indians were all shut 
up in a hut scarcely sufficient for the accommodation of six 

The army being not only poorly armed and disciplined, but 
also discontented and mutinous, it was judged dangerous to 
proceed farther into the enemy's country. The Governor sent 
for AttakuUakulla, who was esteemed the wisest man of the 
nation, and the most steady friend of the English, to meet 
him at fort Prince George. This summons was promptly 
obeyed. On the 17th December, 1759, they held a congress, 
at which the Governor, in a long speech, stated to AttakuUa- 
kulla the injuries done by the Cherokees to the white people, 
in violation of existing treaties — the power of the English— 
the weakness and many defeats of the French, and then con- 
cluded as follows : " These things I have mentioned to show 
you that the great King will not suffer his people to be de- 
stroyed without satisfaction, and to let you know that the 
people of this province are determined to have it. What I 
say is with a merciful intention. If I make war with you, 
you will suffer for your rashness ; your men will be destroyed 
an'd your women and children carried into captivity. What 
few necessaries you now have, will soon be exhausted, and 
you will get no more. But if you give the satisfaction I shall 
ask, trade will be again opened and all things go right I have 
twice given you a list of the murderers. I will now tell you 
there are twenty-four men of your nation whom I demand to 


be delivered up to me to be put to death, or otherwise disposed 
of as I shall think fit. Your people have killed that number 
of ours and more ; therefore it is the least I will accept of. I 
shall give you till to-morrow to consider of it, and then I shall 
expect your answer. You know best the Indians concerned. 
I expect the twenty-four you deliver up, will be those who 
have committed the murders." 

To this long speech, Attakullaknlla replied in words to the 
following effect : " That he remembered the treaties mentioned, 
as he had a share in making them. He owned the kindness 
of the province of South Carolina, but complained much of 
the bad treatment his countrymen had received in Virginia; 
which, he said, was the immediate cause of the present mis- 
understanding. That he had always been the warm friend of 
the English — that he would ever continue such, and would 
use all the influence he had to persuade his countrymen to 
give the Governor the satisfaction he demanded ; though he 
believed it neither would nor could be complied with, as they 
had no coercive authority one over another. He desired the 
Governor to release some of the head men then confined in 
the fort to assist him, and added, " that he was pleased to hear 
of the success of his brothers, the English ;" but could not 
help mentioning "that they showed rnore resentment against 
the Cherokees than they did to other nations who had dis- 
obliged them. That he remembered some years ago several 
white people belonging to Carolina were killed by the Choc- 
taws, for whom no satisfaction had either been demanded or 

Agreeably to the request of Attakullaknlla, the Governor 
released Occonostota, Fiftoe, the chief man of Keowee town, 
and the head warrior of Estatoe, who next day delivered up 
two Indians, whom Mr. Lyttleton ordered to be put in irons. 
After which all the Cherokees present, who knew their con- 
nections to be weak, instantly fled ; so that it was impossible 
to complete the number demanded. Attakullakulla being 
then convinced that peace could not be obtained on the terms 
demanded by the Governor, resolved to go home and patiently 
wait the event; but no sooner was Mr. Lyttleton made ac- 
quainted with his departure, than he dispatched a messenger 
after him to bring him back to his camp: and immediately on 
his return began to treat of peace. Accordingly a treaty was 
drawn up and signed by the Governor, by Attakullakulla, 
another chief, and four of the confined warriors, who, together 
with a few others, thereupon obtained their liberty. By one 
article of this treaty it was agreed "that twenty-six chieftains 
of the Cherokees should be confined in the fort as hostages, 
until the same number of Indians guilty of murder were de- 


livered up to the Commander-in-Chief of the province. This 
was said to be done with their own consent; but as they were 
prisoners they could have no free choice. If they must remain 
confined, it was a matter of Uttle moment under what denom- 
ination they were kept One more Indian was dehvered up, 
for whom one of the hostages was released. The three In- 
dians, given up by their companions, were carried to Charles- 
town, where they died in confinement. 

After having concluded this treaty with the Cherokees, the 
Governor returned to Charlestown. Perhaps the Indians who 
put their mark to these articles of agreement did not under- 
stand them, or conceived themselves to be so far under restraint 
as not to be free agents in the transaction, and therefore not 
bound by it. Whether either of these, or deliberate perfidy 
was the case, cannot be ascertained ; but it is certain that few- 
er none of the nation afterwards paid the smallest regard to it. 
The treacherous act of confining their chiefs, against whom no 
personal charge could be made, and who had traveled several 
hundred miles to obtain peace, was strongly impressed on 
their minds. Instead of permitting them to return home 
"without hurting a hair of their heads,'' as the Governor 
promised in Charlestown, they were confined in a miserable 
hut. It was said they were kept only as hostages until the 
nvimberof criminals demanded was completed by their nation. 
It was also said to be done by the consent of the nation, as 
six of its chiefs had signed the articles of peace ; but when 
the relative situation of the parties, and all circumstances are 
considered, nothing less could have been expected than that 
these wild and independent warriors' would violate the articles 
they had signed, and retaliate for the confinement of their 

Scarcely had Governor Lyttleton concluded the treaty of 
fort Prince George, when the small pox, which was raging in 
an adjacent Indian town, broke out in his camp. As few of 
the army had gone through that distemper, the men were 
struck with terror and in great haste returned to the settle- 
ments, cautiously avoiding all intercourse with one another, 
and suff'ering much from hunger and fatigue by the way. The 
Governor followed them, and arrived in Charlestown on Jan- 
uary 8th, 1760. This expedition cost the province £25,000 
sterling. Though not a drop of blood had been spilt during 
the campaign, yet as articles of peace were signed, the Gov- 
ernor, as Commander-in-Chief, was received like a conqueror 
with the greatest demonstrations of joy. 

These rejoicings on account of the peace were scarcely over, 
when news arrived that fresh hostihties had been committed, 
and that the Cherokees had killed fourteen men within a mile 


of fort Prince George. The Indians had contracted an in- 
vincible antipathy to Captain Coytmore, the officer whom 
Governor Lyttleton had left commander of that fort. The 
treatment they had received at Charleston, but especially the 
imprisonment of their chiefs, converted their former desire of 
peace into the bitterest rage of war. Occonostota, a chieftain 
of great influence, became an implacable enemy to Carolina, 
and determined to repay treachery with treachery. With a 
strong party of Cherokees he surrounded fort Prince George, 
and compelled the garrison to keep within their works ; but 
finding that no impression could be made on the fort, he 
contrived the following stratagem for the relief of his country- 
men confined in it. 

He placed a party of savages in a, dark thicket by the river 
side, and then sent an Indian woman, whom he knew to be 
always welcome at the fort, to inform the commander that he 
had something of consequence to communicate and would 
be glad to speak with him at the river side. Captain Coyt- 
more imprudently consented, and without any suspicions of 
danger, walked down towards the river, accompanied by Lieu- 
tenants Bell and Foster. Occonostota appearing on the op- 
posite side, told him he was going to Charlestown to procure 
a release of the prisoners, and would be glad of a white man 
to accompany him as a safeguard. To cover his dark design 
he had a bridle in his hand, and added he would go and hunt 
for a horse. Coytmore replied that he should have a guard, 
and wished he might find a horse as the journey was very 
long. Upon which, the Indian turning about, swung the 
bridle thrice round his head as a signal to the savages placed 
in ambush, who instantly fired on the officers, shot the Captain 
dead, and wounded his two companions. In consequence of 
which, orders were given to put the hostages in irons to pre- 
vent any further danger from them. When the soldiers were 
attempting to execute these orders, the Indians stabbed one 
and wounded two more of them ; upon which the garrison 
fell on the unfortunate hostages, and butchered all of them in 
a manner too shocking to relate. 

There were few men in the Cherokee nation that did not 
lose a friend or a relation by this massacre, and therefore with 
one voice all immediately declared for war. The leaders in 
every town seized the hatchet, telling their followers "that 
the spirits of their murdered brothers were hovering around 
them and calling out for vengeance on their enemies." From 
the diff"erent towns large parties of warriors took the field, 
painted in the most formidable manner and arrayed with their 
instruments of death. Burning with impatience to imbrue 
their hands in the blood of their enemies, they rushed down 


among innocent and defenceless families on the frontiers of 
Carolina; where men, women and children, without distinc- 
tion, fell a sacrifice to their merciless fury. Such as fled to 
the woods and escaped the scalping knife, perished with hun- 
ger; and those whom they made prisoners were carried into 
the wilderness where they suffered inexpressible hardships. 
Every day brought fresh accounts of their ravages and mur- 
ders. But while the back settlers impatiently looked to their 
Governor for relief, the small pox raged to such a degree on 
the sea coast, that few of the militia could be prevailed on to 
leave their distressed families. In this extremity an express 
was sent to General Amherst the Commander-in-Chief of the 
British forces in America, acquainting him with the deplorable 
situation of the province and imploring his assistance. Ac- 
cordingly a body of fine picked troops, consisting of six 
companies of the Royal Scots regiment, and six companies of 
the seventy-second, in which were included the grenadiers 
and light infantry companies of several regiments, was put 
under the command of Colonel Montgomery and ordered im- 
mediately to Carolina. 

In the meantime William Henry Lyttleton being appointed 
Governor of Jamaica, the charge of the province devolved 
on William Bull. Application was made to the neighboring 
provinces of North Carolina and Virginia for relief. Seven 
troops of rangers were raised to protect the frontiers, and 
prevent the savages from penetrating further down among the 
settlements, and to co-operate with the regulars for carrying 
offensive operations into the Indian country. 

Before the end of April, 1760, Colonel Montgomery landed 
in Carolina and encamped at Monk's Corner. Great was the 
joy of the province upon the arrival of this gallant officer; 
but as the conquest of Canada was the grand object of that 
year's campaign in America, he had orders to strike a sudden 
blow for the relief of Carolina and instantly return to head- 
quarters at Albany. Nothing was omitted that was judged 
necessary to forward the expedition. Several gentlemen of 
fortune, excited by a laudable zeal for the safety of their 
country, formed themselves into a company of volunteers, 
and joined the army. The whole force of the province was 
collected and ordered to rendezvous at Congarees. 

A few weeks after his arrival Colonel Montgomery marched 
to the Congarees where he was joined by the militia of the 
province, and immediately set out for the Cherokee country. 
Having little time allowed him, his march was uncommonly 
expeditious. After reaching a place called Twelve Mile river 
he proceeded with a party of his men in the night to surprise 
Estatoe, an Indian town, about twenty miles from his camp. 


On his way there was another town called little Keowee. He 
ordered the light infantry to surround the latter, and to put 
every adult male Indian in it to the sword. He then pro- 
ceeded to Estatoe which he found nearly abandoned. This 
town, which consisted of at least two hundred houses, and 
was well provided with corn, hogs, poultry, and ammunition, 
he reduced to ashes. Sugartown, and every other settlement 
in the lower nation, shared the same fate. The surprise to 
every one of them was nearly equal, and so sudden and un- 
expected, that the savages could scarcely save themselves, far 
less any little property they had. In these lower towns about 
sixty Indians were killed and forty made prisoners, and the 
rest driven to seek for shelter among the mountains. Having 
finished his business among these lower settlements, with the 
small loss of three or four men, he marched to the relief of 
fort Prince George. Edmund Atkin, agent for Indian affairs, 
dspatched two Indian chiefs to the middle settlements to in- 
form the Cherokees that by suing for peace they might obtain 
it as the former friends and allies of Britain. Colonel Mont- 
gomery finding that the savages were not yet disposed to listen 
to any terms of accommodation, determined to carry the chas- 
tisement a little further. Dismal was the wilderness into 
which he entered, and many were the hardships and dangers 
he had to encounter from passing through dark thickets, rug- 
ged paths and narrow defiles, in which a small body of men 
properly posted might harrass the bravest army. He also had 
numberless difficulties to surmount; particularly from rivers 
fordable only at one place, and overlooked by high banks on 
each side, where an enemy might attack with advantage, and 
retreat with safety. When he had advanced within five miles 
of Etchoe, the nearest town in the middle settlements, he, 
found a low valley covered so thick with bushes that the 
soldiers could scarcely see three yards before them. Through 
this natural ambuscade it was necessary for the army to 
march, though the nature of the place would not admit any 
number of men to act together. Captain Morison who com- 
manded a company of rangers, well acquainted with the 
woods, was therefore ordered to advance and scour this thicket. 
He had scarcely entered it when a number of savages sprung 
from their place of concealment, killed the Captain and 
wounded several of his party. Upon which the light in- 
fantry and grenadiers advanced and charged the invisible 
enemy. A heavy fire then began on both sides, and for some 
time the soldiers could only discover the places where the 
savages were hid by the report of their guns. The woods 
resounded with Indian war-whoops and horrible yellings. Du- 
ring the action, which lasted above an hour, Col. Montgomery 


had twenty men killed and seventy-six wounded. What 
number the enemy lost is uncertain, as it is a custom among 
them to carry their dead off the field. Upon viewing the 
ground, all were astonished to see with what judgment they 
had chosen it. Scarcely could the most experienced officer 
have fixed upon a spot more advantageous for attacking an 

This action terminated much in favor of the British army, 
but reduced it to such a situation as made it very imprudent 
to penetrate further into the woods. Orders were therefore 
given for a retreat which was made with great regularity. A 
large train of wounded men was brought in safety above sixty 
miles through a hazardous country. Never did men endure 
greater hardships, with fewer complaints, than this little army. 
Colonel Montgomery returned to the settlement, and in Au- 
gust embarked for New York agreeably to his orders; but left 
four companies for covering the frontiers. 

In the meantime the distant garrison of fort Loudon, con- 
sisting of two hundred men, was reduced to the dreadful 
alternative of perishing by hunger or submitting to the mercy 
of the enraged Cherokees. The Governor having information 
that the Virginians had undertaken to relieve it, waited to 
hear the news of their having done so. But so remote was 
the fort from every settlement, and so difficult was it to march 
an army through the barren wilderness where the various 
thickets were lined with epemies; and to carry at the same 
time sufficient supplies along with them, that the Virginians 
had relinquished all thoughts of even making the attempt. 
Provisions being entirely exhausted at fort Loudon, the gar- 
rison was reduced to the most deplorable situation. For a 
whole month they had no other subsistence but the flesh of 
lean horses and dogs, and a small supply of Indian beans 
which some friendly Cherokee women procured for them by 
stealth. In this extremity the Commander called a council of 
war to consider what was proper to be done. The officers 
were all of opinion that it was impossible to hold out any 
longer, and therefore agreed to surrender the fort to the Cher- 
okees on the best terms that could be obtained. For this 
purpose Captain Stuart procured leave to go to Chote, one of 
the principal towns in the neighborhood, where he obtained 
the following terms qf capitulation which were signed by the 
Commanding officer and two of the Cherokee chiefs. "That 
the garrison of fort Loudon march out with their arms and 
drums, each soldier having as much powder and ball as their 
officer shall think necessary for their march, and all the 
baggage they may choose to carry. That the garrison be 
permitted to march to Virginia or fort Prince George, and that 


a number of Indians be appointed to escort them and hunt 
for provisions during the march. That such soldiers as are 
lame or sick be received into the Indian towns, and kindly- 
used until they recover, and then be allowed to return to fort 
Prince George. That the Indians provide for the garrison as 
many horses as they conveniently can for their march, agree- 
ing with officers and soldiers for payment. That the fort, 
great guns, powder, ball, and spare arms, be delivered to the 
Indians without fraud or further delay on the day appointed 
for the march of the troops.'' 

Agreeably to these terms the garrison delivered up the fort, 
E^nd marched out with their arms, accompanied by Occonos- 
tota, the prince of Chote, and several other Indians ; and that 
day went fifteen miles on their way to fort Prince George. At 
night they encamped on a plain about two miles from Taliquo, 
an Indian town, when all their attendants left them. During 
the night they remained unmolested; but, next morning, about 
break of day a soldier, from an outpost, informed them that he 
saw a number of Indians, armed and painted in the most 
dreadful manner, creeping among the bushes and advancing 
to surround them. Scarcely had the officer time to order his 
men to stand to their arms, when the savages poured in upon 
them a heavy fire from diiferent quarters, accompanied with 
the most hideous yellings. Captain Paul Demere, with three 
other officers, and about twenty-six private men, fell at the 
first onset. Some fled into the woods, and were afterwards 
taken prisoners and confined. Captain Stuart and those that 
remained were seized, pinioned, and brought back to fort 
Loudon. As soon as Attakullakulla heard that his friend 
Stuart had escaped, he hastened to the fort and purchased him 
from the Indian that took him; giving him his rifle, clothes, 
and all he could command by way of ransom. He then took 
possession of Captain Demere's house, where he kept his 
prisoner as one of his family, and freely shared with him the 
little provisions his table afforded, until a fair opportunity 
should offer for rescuing him from their hands: but the 
soldiers were kept in a miserable state of captivity for some 
time, and then redeemed by the province at a great expense. 

While these prisoners were confined at fort Loudon, Occon- 
ostota formed a design of attacking fort Prince George; and 
for this purpose dispatched a messenger to the settlements in 
the valley, requesting all the warriors there to join him at 
Stickoey old town. By accident, a discovery was made of ten 
bags of powder, and of ball in proportion, which the officers 
had secretly buried in the fort to prevent their falling into the 
enemy's hands. This discovery had nearly proved fatal to 
Captain Stuart, and would certainly have cost him his life, if 


the interpreter had not assured the enemy that these warlike 
stores had been concealed without his knowledge or consent. 
The Indians having now abundance of ammunition, for the 
seige, a council was called at Chotfe; to which the captain 
was brought and put in mind of the obligations he lay under 
to them for sparing his life. They also stated to him, that as 
they had resolved to carry six cannon and two cohorns with 
them against fort Prince George, to be managed by men under 
his command, he must go and write such letters to the com- 
mandant as they should dictate to him. They informed him 
ai the same time, that if that officer should refuse to surrender, 
they were determined to burn the prisoners one after another 
before his face, and try if he could hold out while he saw his 
friends expiring in the flames. Captain Stuart was much 
alarmed at his situation, and from that moment resolved to 
make his escape or perish in the attempt. He privately com- 
municated his design to Attakullakulla, and told him how 
uneasy he was at the thoughts of being compelled to bear 
arms against his countrymen. The old warrior taking him 
by the hand, told him he was his friend. That he had al- 
ready given one proof of his regard, and intended soon to give 
another. Strong and uncultivated minds often carry their 
friendship, as well as their enmity, to an astonishing pitch. 
Among savages, family friendship is a national virtue ; and 
they not unfrequently surpass civilized men in the practice of 
its most self-denying, and noblest duties. 

Attakullakulla claimed Captain Stuart as his prisoner, and 
had resolved to deliver him from danger. Accordingly he 
gave out among his countrymen, that he intended to go a 
hunting for a few days and carry his prisoner along with him 
to eat venison. Having settled all matters they set out on 
their journey, accompanied by the warrior's wife, his brother, 
and two soldiers. For provisions they depended on what they 
might kill by the way. The distance to the frontier settle- 
ments was great, and the utmost expedition necessary to pre- 
vent any surprise from Indians pursuing them. They trav- 
eled nine days and nights through a dreary wilderness, shaping 
their course for Virginia, by the light and guidance of the 
heavenly bodies. On the tenth they arrived at the banks of 
Holstein river, where they fortunately fell in with a party of 
300 men, sent out by Colonel Bird, for the relief of such 
soldiers as might make their escape that way from fort Loudon. 

It might now have been expected that the vindictive spirit 
of the savages would be satisfied, and that they would be dis- 
posed to listen to terms of accommodation. But this was not 
the case. They intended their treacherous conduct at fort 
Louden should serve as a satisfaction for the harsh treatment 


their relations had met with at fort Prince George. Dearly 
had the province paid for the imprisonment and massacre of 
the Indian chiefs at that place. Sorely had the Cherokees 
suffered, in retaliation, for the murders they had committed to 
satisfy their vengeance for that imprisonment, and the mas- 
sacre of their chiefs. Their lower towns had all been destroyed 
by. Colonel Montgomery. The warriors in the middle settle- 
ments had lost many friends and relations. Several French- 
men had crept in among the upper towns, and helped to 
foment their ill-humor against Carolina. Lewis Latinac, a 
French officer, persuaded the Indians that the English had 
nothing less in view than to exterminate them from the face 
of the earth; and furnishing them with arms and ammunition, 
urged them to war. At a great meeting of the nation he 
pulled out his hatchet, and striking it into a log of wood called 
out, " who is the man that will take this up for the King of 
France ?'' Salone, the young warrior of Estatoe, instantly laid 
hold of it, and cried out, " I am for war. The spirits of our 
brothers who have been slain, still call upon us to avenge 
their death. He is no better than a woman that refuses to 
follow me.'' Many others seized the tomahawk and burned 
with impatience for the field. 

Lieutenant Governor Bull, who well knew how little In- 
dians were to be trusted, kept the Royal Scots and militia on 
the frontiers in a posture of defence, and made application a 
second time to General Amherst for assistance. Canada being 
now reduced, the Commander-in-Chief could the more easily 
spare a force adequate to the purpose intended. Lieutenant- 
Colonel James Grant, with a regiment fromEngland, and two 
companies of light infantry from New York, received orders 
to embark for Carolina. Early In the year 1761, he landed at 
Charlestown, where he took up his winter quarters until the 
proper season should approach for taking the field. 

In this campaign, the province exerted itself to the utmost. 
A provincial regiment was raised, and the command of it 
given to Colonel Middleton.* Presents were provided for the 
Indian allies, and several of the Chickesaws and Catawbas 
engaged to co-operate with the white people against the 
Cherokees. All possible preparations were quickly made for 
supplying the army with everything necessary for the expe- 

* The other field officers were Henry Laurens, Lieutenant-Colonel; John 
Moultrie, Major. William Moultrie, Francis Marion, Isaac Huger, Andrew 
Pickens, Owen Roberts, Adam McDonald, James McDonald and William Mason, 
served in this expedition, and were there trained to further and greater services 
in the cause of their country. They all served in the revolutionary war, and i'n 
the course of it, the four first were promoted to the rank of general officers. Bel- 
lamy Crawford, John Huger, Joseph Lloyd, John Lloyd and Thomas Savage, also 
served in this expedition; and afterwards in civil departments, in and after the 


dition. Great had been the expense which this quarrel with 
the Cherokees had already occasioned. The Carolinians now 
flattered themselves that, by one resolute exertion, they would 
free the country from the calamities of war. 

As soon as the Highlanders were in a condition to take the 
field, Colonel Grant set out for the Cherokee territories. After 
being joined by the provincial regiment and Indian allies, he 
mustered about 2,600 men. On the 27th of May, 1761, he 
arrived at fort Prince George; and, on the 7th of June,. began 
his march from it, carrying with him provisions for thirty 
days. A party of ninety Indians, and thirty woodsmen, 
painted like Indians, under the command of Captain Quintine 
Kennedy, had orders to advance in front and scour the woods. 
When near to the place where Colonel Montgomery was at- 
tacked the year before, the Indian allies in front observed a 
large body of Cherokees posted upon a hill on the right flank 
of the army. An alarm was given. Immediately the savages 
rushing down began to fire on the advanced guard, which 
being supported repulsed them ; but they recovered their 
heights. Colonel Grant ordered a party to march up the hills 
and drive the enemy from them. The engagement became 
general, and was fought on both sides with great bravery. The 
situation of the troops was in several respects deplorable, 
fatigued by a tedious march in rainy weather — surrounded 
with woods so that they could not discern the enemy — galled 
by the scattering fire of savages who, when pressed, always 
fell back, but rallied again and again. No sooner was any 
advantage gained over them in one quarter than they appeared 
in another. While the attention of the commander was occu- 
pied in driving the enemy from their lurking place on the 
river's side, his rear was attacked ; and so vigorous an effort 
made for the flour and cattle, that he was obliged to order a 
party back to the relief of the rear-guard. From 8 o'clock in 
the morning until 11, the savages continued to keep up an 
irregular and incessant fire ; sometimes from one place, and 
sometimes from another, while the woods resounded with 
hideous war-whoops frequently repeated, but in different direc- 
tions. At length the Cherokees gave way and were pursued, 
What loss they sustained in this action is unknown, but of 
Colonel Grant's army there were between fifty and sixty killed 
and wounded. Orders were given not to bury the slain, but 
to sink them in the river to prevent their being dug up from 
their graves and scalped. To provide horses for those that 
were wounded, several bags of flour were thrown into the 
river. After which the army proceeded to Etchoe, a large 
Indian town, which they reached about midnight, and next 
day reduced to ashes. Every other town in the middle settle- 


ments shared the same fate. Their magazines and cornfields 
were likewise destroyed ; and the miserable savages, with their 
families, were driven to seek for shelter and provisions among 
the barren mountains. 

Colonel Grant continued thirty days in the heart of the 
Cherokee territories. Upon his return to fort Prince George 
the feet and legs of many of his men were so mangled, and 
their strength and spirits so exhausted, that they were unable 
to march any further. He therefore encamped at that place 
to refresh his men, and wait the resolutions of the Cherokees 
in consequence of the heavy chastisement which they had 
received. Besides the many advantages their country afforded 
for defence, it was supposed they had been assisted by French 
officers. The savages supported their attack for some hours 
with considerable spirit ; but being driven from their advan- 
tageous posts they were disconcerted. Though the repulse 
was far from being decisive, yet after this engagement they 
returned no more to the charge, but remained the tame spec- 
tators of their towns in flames and their country laid desolate. 

It is no easy matter to describe the distress to which the 
savages were reduced by this severe correction. Even in 
time of peace they are destitute of that foresight which pro- 
vides for future events; but in time of war, when their villages 
are burnt and their fields destroyed, they are reduced to ex- 
treme want. The hunters, furnished with ammunition, may 
make some small provision for themselves; but women, chil- 
dren, and old men must perish from being deprived of the 
means of subsistence. 

Soon after Colonel Grant's arrival at fort Prince George, 
AttakullakuUa, attended by several chieftains, came to his 
camp and expressed a desire of peace. They had suffered 
severely for breaking their alliance with Britain, and giving 
ear to the promises of France. Convinced at last of the weak- 
ness of the French, who were neither able to assist them in 
time of war nor to supply their wants in time of peace, they 
resolved to renounce all connection with them. Accordingly 
terms of peace were drawn up and proposed. The different 
articles being read and interpreted AttakullakuUa agreed to 
them all except one, by which it was demanded "that four 
Cherokee Indians be delivered up to Colonel Grant at fort 
Prince George to be put to death in the front of his camp; or 
that four green scalps be brought to him in the space of twelve 
nights." The warrior could not agree to this article, and 
therefore the Colonel sent him to Charlestown to see whether 
the Lieutenant-Governor would consent to mitigate its rigor. 

Accordingly AttakullakuUa, and the chieftains being fur- 
nished with a safeguard, set out for Charlestown to hold a 


conference with Lieutenant-Governor Bull, who, on their ar- 
rival, called a Council to meet at Ashley ferry, and then spoke 
to the following effect: "Attakullakulla I am glad to see you, 
as I have always heard of your good behavior, and that you 
have been a good friend to the English. I take you by the 
hand, and not only you, but all those with you, as a pledge 
for their security whilst under my protection. Colonel Grant 
acquaints me that you have applied for peace. I have there- 
fore met with my beloved men to hear what you have to say, 
and my ears are open for that purpose." A fire was kindled, 
the pipe of peace was lighted, and all smoked together for 
some time in great silence and solemnity. 

Attakullakulla then arose and addressed the Lieutenant- 
Governor and Council to the following efi'ect: "It is a great 
while since I last saw your honor. I am glad to see you and 
all the beloved men present. I am come to you as a messen- 
ger from the whole nation. I have now seen you, smoked 
with you, and hope we shall live together as brothers. When 
1 came to Keowee, Colonel Grant sent me to you. You live 
at the water side and are in light, we are in darkness ; but 
hope all will yet be clear. I have been constantly going about 
doing good, and though I am tired, yet I am come to see what 
can be done for my people who are in great distress." Here 
he produced the strings of wampum he had received from the 
different towns, denoting their earnest desire of peace, and 
added, " as to what has happened, I believe it has been ordered 
b y our father above. We are of a different color from the 
white people. They are superior to us. But one God is 
father of all, and we hope what is past will be forgotten. God 
Almighty made all people. There is not a day but some are 
coming into and others going out of the world. The great 
King told me the path should never be crooked, but open for 
every one to pass and repass. As we all live in one land, I 
hope we shall all love as one people." After which peace 
was formally ratified and confirmed. The former friendship 
of the parties being renewed, both expressed their hope that it 
would last as long as the sun shines and the rivers run. 

Thus ended the war with the Cherokees, which had proved 
ruinous to them, and seriously distressful to South Carolina, 
without being advantageous or honorable to the contending 
parties. Nothing was gained by either, and a great deal was 
lost by both. In the review of the whole, there is much to 
blame, and more to regret. The Cherokees were the first 
aggressors by taking horses from the Virginians ; but by kill- 
ing them for that offence the balance of injury was on their 
side. They violated the laws of natural justice by retaliating 
on Carolinians for murders committed by Virginians ; but ac- 


cording to their code, the whites of both were identified as 
objects of retaliation. No pains had been taken to teach them 
better by their neighbors, who enjoyed the superior benefits of 
civihzation and of Christianity. When the storm of war was 
ready to burst on their heads they sent their messenger of 
peace to apologize, explain, and negotiate for the unauthorized 
murders of their lawless young warriors ; but they were not 
heard, nor even suffered to speak. Governor Lyttleton, un- 
willing to be balked of his military expedition, marched with 
his army into their country with these messengers of peace in 
his train ; ostensibly for their safety, and with a promise that 
a hair of their heads should not be hurt, but really as hostages 
for their countrymen ; and they were afterwards, without any 
personal fault, confined as such till twenty- four of their nation 
should be delivered up to expiate by their death for the mur- 
der of the Carolinians. If this demand was right, it was of 
that too rigid kind which hardens into wrong. Compliance 
with it was impossible ; for no such coercive power could be 
exercised over these wild and independent warriors, under 
their feeble system of loose government. A treaty was never- 
theless made to that effect, but under circumstances that its 
observance could not be expected. Treachery begat treachery, 
and murder produced murder. The lives of these men who 
came originally as messengers of peace, though afterwards 
retained as hostages, were barbarously taken away without 
any fault of theirs, other than their obeying the laws of nature 
in resisting a military order for putting their persons in irons. 
A deadly hatred, and a desolating war was the consequence. 
Both exerted all their energies to inflict upon the opposite 
party the greatest possible amount of distress. The war, after 
incalculable mischief was done to both parties, ended in peace; 
but the hatred of the Cherokees to Carolina continued to 
rankle in their hearts. In about fifteen years after it broke 
out, under the auspices of the same John Stuart before men- 
tioned, to the great distress of Carolina in its revolutionary 
war with Great Britain, which shall be related hereafter. 

The treaty made by Sir Alexander Cumming with the Chero- 
kees in 1730, had preserved peace between them and Carohna 
for thirty years. It is highly probable that moderation on the 
part of Governor Lyttleton would have prevented its interrup- 
tion to any great extent, and most certainly the horrid scenes 
which have just been reviewed. The assumption of a high- 
toned spirit of decision on his part, carried to extremes against 
ignorant savages, unrestrained by social order and the pre- 
cepts of religion, together with their vindictive temper and 
indiscriminate mode of retaliating for injuries received, pro- 
duced a chain of great and reciprocal distress. The first link 


of this was the petty theft of a few Virginian horses, for ne- 
cessary purposes ; and the last, the ruin of the Cherokee nation, 
the desolation of populous settlements and the murder of many 
Carolinians. A review of the whole demonstrates that civil- 
ized people, as well as savages, show more sound policy as 
well as true wisdom in abating of their just demands to a 
certain extent than in urging complete and peremptory satis- 
faction for injuries received with too high a hand, and beyond 
the point of moderation. 

In proportion as the province increased in the number of 
white inhabitants, its danger from the savage tribes grew less 
alarming. But to prevent any molestation from Indians, and 
to establish the peace of the colonies on the most lasting foua- 
dation, his Brittannic Majesty, by his proclamations after the 
peace of 1763, took care to fix the boundaries of their hunt- 
ing lands in as clear a manner as the nature of the country 
would admit. No settlements were allowed to extend any 
further backward, upon the Indian territories, than the sources 
of those great rivers which fall into the Atlantic ocean; and 
all British subjects who had settled beyond these limits were 
ordered to remove. All private subjects were prohibited from 
purchasing lands from Indians; but if the latter should at any 
time be inclined to dispose of their property, it must, for the 
future, be offered to the King by the general consent of the 
nation, and at a public assembly held by British Governors 
for that purpose. All traders were obliged to take out licenses 
from their respective Governors for carrying on commerce 
with the Indians. 

The French and Spaniards having by the treaty of 1763 
ceded to Great Britain all their territories in the vicinity of 
South Carolina, nothing further was necessary than to guard 
the provinces against the dangers arising from the savages. 
It was thought proper that a superintendent of Indian affairs 
should be appointed for the Southern, as well as the Northern 
district of America. This office was given to Captain John 
Stuart, who was in every respect well qualified for it. The 
Assembly not only thanked him for his good conduct and 
great perseverance at fort Loudon, but rewarded him with 
£1,500 currency, and recommended him to the Governor as a 
person worthy of preferment in the service of the province. After 
his commission arrived, the Carolinians promised themselves 
for the future great tranquility and happiness. Plans of lenity 
were likewise adopted by government with respect to the 
Indian tribes, and cautions were taken to guard them against 
oppression and prevent any rupture with them. Experience 
had shown that rigorous measures, such as humbling them 
by force of arms, though expensive and attended with the 


sacrifice of lives, were seldom accompanied with any good 
eifects. Such treatment rendered the savages cruel, suspicious 
and distrustful, prepared them for renewing hostilities, and 
kept alive their ferocious warlike spirit. 

It was thought that by treating Indians with gentleness and 
humanity, they would by degrees lose their savage spirit, and 
become civilized; and instead of implacable enemies, ever 
bent on destruction, they might eventually be rendered useful 
and beneficial allies. 

The British government adopted this line of government 
after the peace of 1763. The result in some degree justified 
their expectations, till the revolutionary war commenced. The 
same ambitious cruel policy which had formerly led the Span- 
iards and French to set the Indians on the English settlements 
was then adopted by the English against their own colonists, 
even before they had resolved on independence. The same 
ruinous consequences followed. The poor unfortunate misled 
Indians became once more the victims of their own folly, in 
suffering themselves to be employed as tools to forward the 
ambitious views of foreign powers ; as shall be hereafter ex- 

The Indians on the continent of America, who were at the 
time of its discovery a numerous and formidable people, have 
since that period been constantly decreasing. For ihis rapid 
depopulation many reasons have been assigned. It is well 
known that population everywhere keeps pace with the means 
of subsistence. The Indians being driven from their posses- 
sions near the sea, as the settlements progressed, were robbed 
of many of the necessaries of life, particularly of oysters, 
crabs and fish, with which the maritime parts furnished them 
in great abundance, and on which they must have chiefly 
subsisted, as is apparent from a view of their camps still 
remaining near the sea-shore. As their territorities have been 
gradually circumscribed by narrower bounds, the means of 
subsistence derived from game have become proportionably 
less. The provisions they raise by planting, even in the best 
seasons, are scanty; but in case of a failure of crops, or of their 
fields being destroyed, numbers of them perished by famine. 
The first European settlers soon discovered their natural pas- 
sion for war, and turned the fury of one tribe against another, 
with a view to save themselves. When engaged in hostilities 
they always fought, not so much to humble and conquer, as 
to exterminate and destroy. The British, the French, and 
Spanish nations, having planted colonies in their neighbor- 
hood, a rivalship for influence over them took place. Each 
nation, having its allies among the savages, was indefatigable 
in instigating them against the colonies of every other Euro- 


pean nation, and against its Indian allies. Hence a series of 
bloody and destructive wars have been carried on among these 
rude tribes, as instruments of the pride and ambitition of Euro- 
pean sovereigns, which, though waged without any national 
object or interest on the part of the Indians, was conducted 
with all the rage and rancour of implacable enemies bent on 
the destruction of each other in defence of their nearest con- 
nections and dearest rights. 

But famine and war, however destructive, were not the only 
causes of their rapid decay. The small pox frequently proved 
exceedingly fatal. But of all other causes, the introduction 
of spirituous liquors among them has been the most destruc- 
tive. Excess and intemperance not only undermined their 
constitution, but also created many quarrels. Most of the 
white traders engaged in commercial business among the 
Indians, instead of reforming them by examples of virtue and 
purity, have rather served to corrupt their morals and render 
them more treacherous and debauched than they originally 
were. The avarice and ambition of the professors of Chris- 
tianity have so far debased the pristine habits and stern virtues 
of hardy, free and independent savages, that the few who now 
remain have lost in a great measure their primitive character. 
The vices of white people, falsely called Christians, and the 
diseases the consequences of the vices caught by the contam- 
inating intercourse of such, have so nearly exterminated the 
native original owners of the soil, that many nations formerly 
populous are extinct, and their names entirely forgotten. 

The principal tribes in or near to South Carolina are the 
Cherokees, the Catawbas, the Creeks, the Chickesaws and 

The Cherokees, till the revolutionary war, continued to in- 
habit that western part of South Carolina which now forms 
Pendleton and Greenville districts. Having taken part with 
the British in that contest, they drew upon themselves the 
resentment of the State; and were so far subdued by its troops 
that they were obliged by treaty, on the 20th May, 1777, to cede 
to South Carolina all their lands eastward of the Unacaye 
mountains. They now reside beyond the mountains, and are 
inconsiderable both in number and force. 

Of twenty-eight tribes of Indians which inhabited South 
Carolina in 1670, when it began to be settled by white people, 
twenty-six have entirely disappeared. The Cherokees are per- 
mitted, during good behaviour, to reside on the west side of 
the Oconee mountains. The Catawbas alone have continued 
in the State to the present time. They occupy fifteen miles 
square, situated on each side of the Catawba river, near the 
borders of North Carolina. They mustered 1,500 fighting 


men at the first settlement of the province; but at present their 
warriors do not exceed sixty, and the whole of their nation is 
scarcely two hundred. These have degenerated from the 
hardiness of the Indian character, and are so generally ad- 
dicted to habits of indolence and intoxication, that they are 
fast sinking into insignificance. 

The Creeks inhabit a fine country on the southwest, between 
four and five hundred miles distant from Charlestown, and 
the number of both the upper and lower nations does not 
exceed two thousand gun-men. The Chickasaw towns lie 
about six hundred miles due west from Charlestown ; but the 
nation cannot send three hundred warriors to the field. The 
Choctavvs are at least seven hundred miles west and south- 
west from Charlestown, and have between three and four 
thousand gun-men. 


Military Operations against Pirates. 

The Spaniards and Indians were the first, but not the only 
enemies of the infant settlement of South Carolina. When the 
early settlers had made head against both, and raised mer- 
chantable commodities for exportation, they had litde more 
than began to ship the same than they were deprived of the 
fruits of their labors by public robbers on the contiguous 
ocean. From privateering to piracy the transition is easy. Both 
rob their fellow men of their property, but with this difference: 
the first are licensed, but the last are not. The distinction is 
more in name than reality, for they who give the licenses are sel- 
dom authorized by the laws of nature or of nature's God to grant 
them. They who receive them rarely pay regard to the limita- 
tions under which they are obtained. Property, whether of a 
friend or a foe, of a countryman or a foreigner, is alike to most 
of them ; provided,by any artifice, it can be taken with impunity. 

The wars which raged in the close of the 17th and the be- 
ginning of the 18th century, made lamentable inroads on moral 
principles. They filled the American seas with privateers and 
afterwards with pirates. These public robbers were received 
with too much indulgence in Charlestown. They brought with 
them abundance of gold and silver, and by aid of these pre- 
cious metals often found favor and escaped from justice. 
Proofs of their guilt could not easily be obtained, and the hu- 
manity of the laws would not suffer them to be punished on 
suspicion. Some were permitted to go at large without any re- 
striction ; others to enter into recognizance, with security, for 
their good behavior till the Governor shall hear whether the pro- 
prietors would grant them a general indemnity. The proprie- 


tors, wishing to crush them, instructed Governor Ludvvell to 
change the form of electing juries ; and required that all pirates 
should be tried by the laws of England, made for the sup- 
pression of piracy. Before these orders reached Carolina the 
pirates, by their money and free intercourse with the people, 
had made so many friends that it was difficult, to bring them 
to trial, and more so to punish them. The courts of law be- 
came scenes of altercation and confusion. The gold and 
silver of pirates enlisted in their behalf the eloquence of the 
first gentlemen of the bar ; too many of whom held that every 
advantage, though at the expense of honor, justice, public 
good, and even of truth, should be taken in favor of their 
clients. Hence it happened that several of the pirates escaped,* 
purchased lands, and took up their residence in the colony. 
The authority of government was too feeble to check the evil, 
supported as it was by a tide of money flowing into the country, 
At length the proprietors, to gratify the people, granted an 
indemnity to all the pirates with the exception of such as had 
committed depredations on the dominions of the great Mogul. 
The Carolinians, by the increasing culture of rice and other 
valuable commodities, became more vulnerable on the ocean, 
and of course more sensible of the benefits of uninterrupted 
trade, and of the injury done to mankind by sea robbers. In 
the last year of the 17th century, the planters had raised more 
rice than they could find vessels to export. Forty-five persons 
from different nations. Englishmen, Frenchmen, Portuguese, 
and Indians, had manned a ship at the Havana, and entered 
on a cruise of piracy. While they were on the coast of Caro- 
lina the people felt severely the pernicious effects of that lawless 
trade which in former times they had indirectly encouraged. 
Several ships belonging to Charlestown were taken by those 
public robbers who sent the crews ashore, but kept the vessels 
as their prizes. At last, having quarrelled among themselves 
about the division of the spoil, the Englishmen proving the 
weaker party, were turned adrift in a long boat. They landed 
at Sewee Bay, and from thence traveled over land to Charles- 
town, giving out that they had been shipwrecked, but fortti- 

* These frustrations of justice added to the wealth and reputation of the law- 
yers, whose ingenuity had thrown a shield over guilt; but they inflicted a deep 
wound on the credit and interests of Carolina. The subjects of his Catholic Ma- 
jesty who were the greatest sufferers by the pirates, not only complained of the 
Carolinians for screening: these enemies of the human race, but retaliated by in- 
stigating the Indians to harrass the English settlers, and by tempting theirnegroes 
,h.r.'ni,d ,T'"r'^"'', Sf" '° ®'- Augustine. The Spaniards apologized for 
!„!.„„.? „,,?^,^"'\"'^"'"' inhabitants of Charlestown countenanced and 
encouraged the pirates, by permilting them to carry into their port and spend in 
heir own hat wealth which had been unjustly taken from Span sh sublets m 
the adjacent gulf and ocean, which was the tlioroughfare between old and ne^ 


nately reached the shore in their boat Three masters of ships 
happened to be at Charlestown at the time, who had been 
taken by them, and knew them. Upon their testimony the 
pirates were instantly taken up, tried and condemned. Seven 
out of nine suffered death. 

Early in the 18th century, the island of Providence became 
a receptacle for vagabonds and villains of all nations. From 
this place of rendezvous a crew of desperate pirates had been 
accustomed to push out to sea, and in defiance of the laws of 
nations to obstruct navigation. The trade of Carolinaj and 
that of the West Indies, suffered greatly from their depreda- 
tions. From the year 1717 to 1721, we have an account of 
between thirty and forty vessels which had been taken on that 
coast. For five years those lawless robbers reigned as the 
masters of the Gulf of Florida, plundering and taking ships 
of every nation. North Carolina had also become a refuge for 
pirates, who carried their prizes into Cape Fear river or Provi- 
dence, as best suited their convenience. Their success induced 
bold and rapacious spirits to join them, and in time they be- 
came so formidable that considerable force was requisite to 
repress them. 

Merchants and masters of vessels trading to America and 
the West Indies, having suffered much from the depredations 
of pirates, complained to the King and Council of the heavy 
losses the trade of the nation had sustained from public rob- 
bers who had grown numerous and insolent. Inconsequence 
of which the King issued a proclamation, promising a pardon 
to all pirates who should surrender themselves in the space of 
twelve months, and at the same time ordered to sea a force 
for suppressing them. As they had made the island of Provi- 
dence their common place of residence, Captain Woodes 
Rogers sailed against that island with a few ships of war, and 
took possession of it for the Crown. Except one Vane, who 
with about ninety men made their escape in a sloop, all the 
pirates took the benefit of the King's proclartiation and surren- 
dered. Captain Rogers having made himself master of the 
island, formed a Council in it, and appointed officers, civil and 
military, for the better government of its inhabitants, and so 
ordered matters that for thefuture the trade of the West Indies 
was well protected. 

Though the pirates on the island of Providence were crushed, 
those of North Carolina still remained and were equally trouble- 
some. Vane, who escaped from Captain Rogers, had taken 
two ships bound from Charlestown to London. A pirate sloop 
of ten guns, commanded by Steed Bonnett, and another com- 
manded by Richard Worley, had taken possession of the 
mouth of Cape Fear river, which place was now the principal 


refuge of the pirates. Their station there was so convenient for 
blocking up the harbor of Charlestown that the trade of the 
colony was greatly obstructed. No soonor had one crew left 
the coast than another appeared, so that scarcely one ship 
coming in or going out escaped them. To check their inso- 
lence, Governor Johnson fitted out a ship of force, gave the 
command to William Khett, and sent him to sea for the pro- 
tection of trade. Rhett had scarcely got over the bar when 
Steed Bounett spied him, and sensible of his inferiority made 
for his refuge into Cape Fear river. Thither Rhett followed 
him, took the sloop and brought the commander and about 
thirty men to Charlestown. Soon after this Governor Johnsoa 
embarked and sailed in pursuit of the other sloop of six guns, 
commanded by Richard Worley, which after a desperate en- 
gagement was also taken. The pirates fought till they were 
all killed or wounded except Worley and another man, who 
even then refused to surrender until they were dangerously 
wounded. The Governor brought these two men, together 
with their sloop into Charlestown, where they were instantly 
tried, condemned, and executed, to prevent their dying of their 
wounds. Steed Bonnett and his crew were also tried, and 
condemned. With the exception of one man, all, amounting 
nearly to forty, were hanged, and buried on White Point, be- 
low high water mark.* 

* Steed Bonnett, who sufiered on this occasion, was said to have been a man of 
education and properly, and to have possessed the manners and accompHshments 
of a gentleman. He was addressed by the title of Major. He made his escape 
from prison in women's clothes, but was retalven. After his condemnation he 
wrote a letter to Colonel Rhett, which has been preserved, and by the politeness 
of Judge Bee is in the hands of the author. It was as follows : 

NovEMBEB 27th, nia 
Sir: — My unhappy fate lays me under a necessity of troubling you with this 
letter, which I humbly beg you will be pleased to excuse, and with a tenderness 
of heart compassionate the deplorable circumstances I have been inadvertently 
led into ; and though I can't presume to have the least expectations of your friend- 
ship for so miserable a man, yet I hope your good dispositon and kind humanity 
will move you to become an intercessor with his honor the Governor, that I may 
be Indulged with a reprieve to stay execution of the severe sentence I have under- 
gone, till his majesty's pleasure be known concerning me. 

I have the misfortune of suffering, in the opinion of the world for many crimes 
and injuries done to this government and others in a piratical manner; more than 
I hope, God the knower of all secrets, will lay to my charge; and must intreat 
you to consider that I was a prisoner on board Captain Edward Thatch, who, 
with several of Captain Hornigold's company which he then belonged to, boarded 
and took my sloop from me at the island of Providence, confining me with him 
eleven months, in which time I was never concerned in, nor had any benefit or 
share by his actions, but on the contrary was a very great loser by him ; notwith- 
standing 'tis unjustly by some believed otherwise and used as an aggravation of 
ray offences ; however, I can't but confess my crimes and sins have been too 
many, for which, I thank my gracious God for the blessing, I have the utmost ab- 
horrence and aversion; and although I am become as it were a monster unto 
many, yet I intreat your charitable opinion of my great contrition and godly sorrow 
for the errors of my past life, and am so far from entertaining the least thoughts 
of being, by any inducement in nature, drawn into the like evil and wicked 


Governor Johnson, formerly a popular man, was now become 
more so by his bold and successful expedition against the pi- 
rates. The coast was now happily cleared, and no pirates 
afterwards ventured to sea in that quarter. These two expe- 
ditions cost the province upwards of ten thousand pounds 
sterling, a burden which at this juncture it was ill qualified to 

In addition to the wars which have been stated, Carolina, 
as an appendage to Great Britain, was implicated in all her 
wars. These occupied forty years of the 106 of its colonial 
existence. Its trade was so materially injured from frequent 
captures made by armed vessels of France and Spain, that its 
staple commodities were greatly reduced in price whenever 
either of these nations were at war with Great Britain. This 
unfortunately was the case more than one-third of the whole 
period between the first settlement of South Carolina, and its 
becoming an independent State. 

courses, if I had the happiness of a longer life granted me in this world, that I 
shall always retain in mind, and endeavor to follow those excellent precepts of 
our holy Savior — to love my neighbor as myself j and do unto all men whatsoever 
I would they should do unto me, living in perfect holy friendship and charity with 
all mankind. This I do assure you, sir, is the sincerity of my heart upon the word 
of a penitent Christian, and my only desire of enjoying such a transient being is, 
that it may for the future be consecrated to the service of my maker, and by a long 
and unfeigned repentance I may beseech Almighty God, of his inlinite mercy, to 
pardon and remit all my sins, and enable me to live a holy religious life, and make 
satisfaction to all persons whom I have any ways injured. 

I don't doubt but the favor of your friendship and interest in the House of Com- 
mons may prevail on his honor to indulge me with a reprieve, if you'll be so 
charitable as to grant it me; which I presume to hope for, not only in tender re- 
gard of so many men having already suffered, and of my hearty and sincere re- 
pentance with full purposes of amendment of life ; but in consideration of the 
securities and promises of favor I received from Colonel Rhett, which together 
with the joy I conceived of having an opportunity safely to disengage myself" from 
all such wicked people and inhumane actions, made me the sole instrument of 
persuading those people to deliver themselves and arms up, which took me near 
twenty-four hours time and trouble to do after the engagement was over, when I 
knew what the two sloops were that Colonel Rhettcommanded. By which means 
I saved the great effusion of blood which mustinfallibly have beenspilt by these rash 
people, had they received Colonel Rhett's company on board, and blown us all up 
as they threatened, which I found much difficulty to persuade them from doing. 
This is what Colonel Rhett and many of his officers on board can testify. 

I must confess the escape I attempted might justly increase and aggravate his 
honor and the government against me, for which I ask his and their pardon, and 
should not in the least have offered it, had not nature, as I believe it will in any 
man under the same circumstances, prompted me to evade, if possible, so horrid 
a sentence, by endeavoring to get to some private settlement and continue there 
till ray friends could apply home for his majesty's gracious pardon. 

I am fearful I have been too tedious already; therefore, shall not further trouble 
you than once more to repeat my earnest entreaty for your charitable favor,and to 
assure you that it will ever heartily devote me to your service, and oblige me al- 
ways gratefully to acknowledge myself. 

Sir, your most obliged, and unfortunate humble servant, 




The Settlement of the Back Country. 

Settlements as early as 1736 had partially progressed west- 
ward, from the sea coast, about eighty or ninety miles.* Be- 
tween 1750 and 1760 two or three germs of settlement were 
planted 200 miles from Charlestown by emigrants from Penn- 
sylvania and Virginia, who had advanced from north to south 
and in front of the eastern settlers. 

Between the sea-coast settlements, and those to the west- 
ward, a considerable tract of country was for several years left 
in the undisturbed possession of the aborigines. These and 
several other circumstances, sanctioned an early distinction 
between the upper and lower country of South Carolina. In 
1750, Colonel Clark emigrated from Virginia and settled on 
Pacotet river. In the course of six years he was joined by 
eight or ten families from Pennsylvania, all of whom settled 
on or near Fair Forest creek, or the three forks of Tyger river. 
These constituted the whole white population of that part of 
the province in 175.5. In that year Braddock was defeated; 
and the frontiers of Pennsylvania, Maryland, and Virginia, 
were exposed to so much danger from the French at Fort 
Duquesne on the Ohio, and the Indians attached to them, that 
their inhabitants were strongly inclined to move southwardly. 
In the same year Governor Glen made a treaty with the 

*" Two classes of people generally advanced in front of the' regular settlers or 
cultivators of the soil. These were the owners of cowpens, and traders with the 
Indians. An uncultivated country covered with canes and natural grasses, pos- 
sessed many advantages for raising stock. These were greatest where the settle- 
ments were least. Central spots in which cattle might be occasionally rallied, 
and so far domesticated as to prevent their running wild, were sought for and 
improved. These were often located in front of the settlements, and were called 
cowpens. They did not interfere with the pursuits of the natives, and therefore 
seldom gaveoflence ; though they were sometimes observed with jealousy as'the 
precursors of settlement. 

Traders advanced without ceremony into the heart of Indian settlements. 
Speculative men have drawn comparisons between savage and civilized life, 
highly colored in favor of the former. Thejr theories have been acted upon ever 
since the discovery of America, by individuals who, turning their backs upon 
civilized society, have voluntarily chosen a residence among the Indians. Of this 
description there were several who at an early day had settled among the Indians 
at a great distance from the white people. Anthony Park, one of the first settlers 
of the back country, who now lives in Newberry district, traveled in 1758 a few 
hundred miles among the Indians to the west of the Alleghany mountains. He 
found several white men, chiefly Scotch or Irish who said that they had lived as 
traders among the Indians twenty years; a fevf from forty to fifty, and one sixty 
years. One of these said that he had upwards of seventy children and grand- 
children in the nation. If these accounts are correct, the oldest of these traders 
must have taken up his abode among the Indians 400 miles to the west of Charles- 
town before the close of .the 17th, century when the white population of Carolina 
scarcely extended twenty miles f'rom the sea coast. 


Cherokee Indians, by which much of what is now called the 
upper country was ceded to the King of Great Britain. Both 
events allured settlers to the western parts of South Carolina. 
In the year 1756 Patrick Calhoun, with four families of his 
friends, settled on Long Cane in Abbeville. On his arrival 
there were only two families of white settlers, one named 
Gowdy the other Edwards, in that southwestern extremity of 
the upper country. The progress of settlement which com- 
menced in or about 1750 was so very slow, for five years, 
that in the beginning of 1756, the whole number of families 
scarcely exceeded twenty. In that and the three following 
years, there was a great influx of inhabitants from the middle 
provinces. Carolina, though nominally at war, really enjoyed 
all the blessings of peace, while hostilities raged in the north- 
ern and middle provinces, and their frontiers were drenched 
in blood shed by the savage allies of France. The recent set- 
tlers in the upper country of Carolina, who had fled from In- 
dian massacres in Pennsylvania, Maryland, and Virginia, in 
the three years that followed Braddock's defeat, found that in 
the year 1759 they were involved in calamities similar to those 
from which they had escaped. The reduction of Fort Du- 
quesne in 175S gave the blessings of peace to the middle pro- 
vinces, but entailed the miseries of war* on South Carolina. 
The origin of Cherokee hostilities in 1759, has been explained 
in the last chapter. It is here only necessary to observe that 
its operations in that, and the two or three following years, 
stunted the growth of the upper country. Several flourishing 
settlements were broke up. Some took to Forts, others aban- 
doned the country, and no new settlers would venture into it. 
These calamities were done away by the peace of Paris in 
1763, and from that period the settlements recommenced with 
increasing vigor. The influx of inhabitants was greater than 
ever, and the population was advanced Avith gigantic strides. 
Unalloyed good is not the lot of man. The war was ended, 

*A few facts attested by an eye witness will give some faint idea of the sufler- 
ings of the frontier settlers. A young man was shot through the body and through 
the thigh, one of his arms was broke, and he was scalped. A tomahawk was 
stuck into his head. The muscles of his neck were so far divided that his chin 
lodged on his breast, and several arrows were shot into his body. In this condi- 
tion after he had extracted the arrows, he walked twenty miles before he could 
get any assistance. Another was found wounded in the woods where he had lain 
nine days without bread or water, incapable of helping or even of moving himself. 
An attempt was made to move him but he instantly expired. When settlements 
were attacked by the Indians, some would escape. These would conceal or lose 
themselves in the woods. In this condition they have been known to wander two 
or three weeks, living on snakes and such articles of food as the woods afforded. 
Several who were scalped, and otherwise badly wounded, had the good fortune 
10 recover; though they received no aid from regular physicians or surgeons. 
Women and children were oftener the subjects of these barbarities than men, for 
the latter by resistance for the most part obtained the superior boon of being 
killed outright. 


but the consequences of it continued. It had tainted the pria- 
ciples of many of the inhabitants, so as to endanger the peace, 
and happiness of society. When settlements were brolce up, 
industry was at an end. The prospects of reaping were so 
faint, that few had the resolution to sow. Those who took up 
their residence in Forts had nothing to do. Idleness is the 
parent of every vice. When they sallied out they found much 
property left behind by others who had quitted their homes. 
To make use of such derelict articles did not appear to them 
in the odious colors of theft. Cattle were killed — horses were 
sold — household furniture, and plantation tools were taken 
into possession in violation of private rights. The wrong- 
doers lived easily at the expense of the absentees, and acquired 
such vicious habits that when the war was over they despised 
labor and became pests of society. To steal was easier than 
to work. The former was carried on extensively, and the 
latter rarely attempted. Among all kinds of theft none was 
so easy in execution, so difficult in detection, and at the same 
time so injurious in its consequences, as horse-stealing. On 
the labors of that useful animal, the cultivators of the soil 
depended for raising the provisions necessary for their sup- 
port. A horse when grazing is as easily caught by a thief, as 
by his owner ; and will as readily carry the one as the other 
to a distance where he might be sold or exchanged, to the 
serious injury of an helpless family. Practices of this kind 
became common, and were carried on by system and in con- 
cert with associates living remote from each other. The in- 
dustrious part of the community were oppressed, and the sup- 
port of their families endangered. 

These difficulties were increased from an inefficient system 
of government. If the thieves were caught, they could not be 
brought to trial nearer than Charlestown. Till the year 1770,' 
there were no courts of justice held beyond the limits of the 
capital. The only legal authority in this infancy of the back 
country was that of justices of the peace, authorized by the 
Governor, who always resided near the sea coast. With his 
scanty means of information, to select proper persons for that 
office was no easy matter. The greatest villians had generally 
the most money, and often the most friends. Instead of ex- 
erting their authority to suppress horse-stealing and other 
crimes, some of these justices were sharers in the profits of 
this infamous business. Before such it was difficult to pro- 
cure the commitment of criminals. If the proofs of their guilt 
were too strong to be evaded, the expense of transporting them 
to Charlestown was great ; the chances of their escape many. 
When brought to trial, the non-attendance of witnesses from 
a distance of two hundred miles, and other circumstances 


were so improved by lawyers to whom the horse thieves were 
both able and willing to give large fees, that prosecutions, 
though for real crimes, seldom terminated in conviction. The 
inhabitants groaned under these frustrations of justice. De- 
spairing of redress in a legal channel, they took the law in 
their~ own hands. In the year 1764 Thomas Woodward, 
.Joseph Kirkland, Barnaby Pope, and others of the besfand 
most orderly inhabitants, held a consultation on what was best 
to be done. They drew up an instrument of writing which 
they and their associates generally subscribed. In it they 
bound themselves to make a common cause in immediately 
pursuing and arresting all horse thieves and other criminals. 
Such when caught were tried in a summary way by the neigh- 
bors, and if found guilty, were sentenced to receive a number 
of stripes on their bare backs, more or less in proportion to their 
misdeeds. They were then advised to leave the neighborhood 
and informed that if they returned, their punishment would be 
doubled. This mode of proceeding was called regulation, and 
its authors and friends regulators. 

The horse thieves, their associates, and other criminals, 
who, from causes already mentioned, were numerous, made a 
counter common cause in supporting themselves against these 
regulators. Most of the inhabitants favored one or other of 
these parties. The one justified their proceedings on the score 
of necessity and substantial, though irregular justice ; the other 
alleged the rights of British subjects to a legal trial by a court 
and jury. Though the former meant well, yet justice is of 
so delicate a nature that form as well as substance must be 
regarded. It is therefore probable, that in some cases, the pro- 
ceedings of the regulators may have so far partaken of the 
infirmities of human nature, as to furnish real grounds of 
complaint against them. Their adversaries made such high 
colored representations of their conduct, that the civil author- 
ity interposed. Lord Charles Greville Montague, Governor of 
the province, adopted measures for their suppression. With 
this view he conferred a high commission on a man named 
Scouil. whose conduct, character and standing in society, had 
rendered him in the opinion of his neighbors, and especially 
of the regulators, very unfit for the office. As if the country 
had been in rebellion, Scouil erected something which was 
intended to be a royal standard ; and afterwards called upon 
the regulators to answer for their transgressions of the law. 
In addition to many other acts of severity, he arrested two of 
their number and sent them under a guard to Charlestown, 
where they were imprisoned. The regulators and the Scouilites 
contending for the superiority, were arranged under their 
leaders and formed camps in opposition to each other. A 


civil war was on the point of commencing; both were armed 
and prepared for the last extremity. Each party was ready to 
return a fire from their adversaries, but both dreaded the 
odium of beginning hostilities. Instead thereof, a flag was 
sent from one to the other — a capitulation ensued, in which 
both agreed to break up their camps, go home and respect- 
ively petition the Governor for a redress of their grievances. 
This was done and eventuated in the circuit court law, passed 
in the year 1769. The establishment of courts of justice at 
Ninety-Six, now Cambridge, at Orangeburgh, and Camden, 
removed that necessity which was an apology for the proceed- 
ings of the regulators. These gloried in having obtained their 
ends for bringing criminals to justice. Their exertions hence- 
forward took a different direction ; they applied to law and 
ceased to regulate. In less than two years they brought thirty- 
two horse thieves to trial, condemnation and punishment, un- 
der the authority of the new and adjacent circuit courts. The 
cause of justice triumphed, and a wholesome exertion of judi- 
cial authority re-established order. The country enjoyed 
peace and prosperity for the five following years. At the end 
of that period new scenes of distress, connected with the revo- 
lution, opened on the inhabitants. The animosities between 
these parties continued to rankle in their hearts, but were not 
called into action till the year 1775. When the revolution 
commenced, the actors in these late scenes of contention took 
opposite sides; and the names of Scouilites and regulators 
were insensibly exchanged for the appellation of tories and 
whigs, or the friends of the old and new order of things. Many 
of the former were called Scouilites, and probably had co-op- 
erated with Scouil in opposing the regulators ; but the name 
was applied to others as a term of reproach on the alleged 
similarity of their principles as being both abettors of royal 
government, in opposition to the struggles of the people for 
justice and liberty. The tories or Scouilites, for the opposers 
of revolutionary measures were called by both names, insisted 
that the King had laid no new burdens or taxes on the people, 
and that therefore their opposition to royal government was 
groundless. The act, as it respected Carolina, was true; but 
the conclusion drawn from it did not follow. No new bur- 
dens had been laid on the inhabitants of the province, but the 
most grievous had been laid on Massachusetts, in pursuance 
of principles which equally applied to Carolina, and struck at 
the foundation of all her boasted rights. This train of reason- 
ing was too refined for selfish individuals who had not energy 
enough to encounter a present evil to obtain a future good. 
Respectable well-informed persons were sent by the council 
of safety to explain the nature of the controversy to these mis- 


judging people, and to induce their co-operation with their 
fellow-citizens in the common cause of American liberty. 
Partial success followed their explanations, and a treaty of 
neutrality was granted to the disaffected. But the old grudge 
still subsisted, and they continued to thwart the measures of 
Congress. The friends of the revolution marched an army 
into their settlements. Opposition was subdued with little or 
no bloodshed, and a temporary calm succeeded. But many 
of the disheartened royalists abandoned their plantations, and 
went either to the province of Florida, or among the Indians. 
In both cases they were tools in the hands of the British, and 
ready to co-operate with them against their countrymen who 
favored revolutionary measures. They lent their aid to a 
project for attacking the western settlements of South Carolina, 
at the moment Charlestovvn was to be invaded by a powerful 
fleet and army. They performed their part. Under the direc- 
tion of Britain, and in concert with Indians, dressed and 
painted like them, they began to murder the white settlers 
nearly on the same day Sullivan's Island was attacked by the 
British. Measures of discrimination had been proposed 
among themselves to restrain the Indians from disturbing the 
tories, but they were unavailing. Both classes of white people 
fell by a common massacre. The repulse of the British in 
their attack on fort Moultrie, disconcerted the tories and In- 
dians, and gave the whigs leisure to chastise them both. This 
was done with spirit and effect by an army commanded by 
Colonel Williamson. A calm succeeded for three or four 
years, but guards were kept on the frontiers and the inhab- 
itants lived in terror ; for they were apprehensive of a renewed 
attack. After the fall of Charlestown in 1780, everything was 
reversed. The British, the tories and Indians, had the upper 
hand. Robbery, desolation and murder, became common and 
continued till the revolutionary war was ended. Many were 
killed — several fled — the country was filled with widows and 
orphans, and adult male population was sensibly diminished. 
From the first settlement of the upper country till the peace 
of 1783, a succession of disasters had stunted its growth. The 
years 1756, 1757 and 1758, were attended with no uncommon 
calamity. The same may be said of the years between 1770 
and 1775, but with these exceptions; the upper country was 
for nearly twenty years of the first thirty of its existence kept 
in a constant state of disturbance either by the Indians or 
tories, and the contentions between regulators and Scouilites. 
Under all these disadvantages it grew astonishingly. Prior to 
the revolution it had received such an increase of inhabitants, 
as essentially contributed to the support of that bold measure ; 
but since the year 1783, the improvement of that part of the 


State has exceeded all calculation. In the course of the revo- 
lutionary war the Cherokees, having taken part with the ene- 
mies of the State, were so completely defeated, that in 1777 
they ceded to South Carolina all their lands to the eastward 
of the Unacaye mountains. In the year 1784 a land office 
was opened for the sale of this land. The price fixed was ten 
dollars per hundred acres, payable in debts due from the 
State. This low price, the fertility of the soil, and the health- 
iness of its climate, allured settlers to this newly acquired 
mountainous territory in such abundance that its population 
advanced with unexampled rapidity. The extention of the 
limits of South Carolina — the increasing population both of 
its old and new western territory, has within the last twenty- 
five years elevated the upper country from a low condition to 
be the most influential portion of the State. The base of 
South Carolina on the sea coast below the falls of the rivers, 
when compared with its apex above the falls, is nearly as 
three to two ; yet its principal strength rests with the smaller 
section. The latter increases in wealth, population and im- 
provement of every kind, much more rapidly than the former. 
What the flat sea-coast has slowly attained to in 138 years, is 
now within the grasp of the hilly upper country ; though very 
little more than half a century has passed since the first germs 
of civilized population were planted in its western woods. 





Of Introductory Events and Taking of Jirms. 

In the year 1763, when the peace of Paris had strengthened 
the British interest in North America by the addition of the 
contiguous French and Spanish colonies, many thought the 
English American empire was established on a permanent 
footing. Subsequent events proved the fallacy of these spec- 
ulations. Perhaps some may allege that the removal of 
hostile neighbors inspired the colonists with projects of inde- 
pendence. This opinion is also unfounded, especially in South 
Carolina. Happy in her connection with Britain she wished 


for no change. Between her and the mother country there 
was no collision of interests, and there never had been any- 
serious complaints of either against the other. Commerce and 
manufactures were the favorite pursuits of Great Britain, and 
agriculture of Carolina. No instance can be produced where 
the relative connection, between a colony and its parent State, 
was more likely to last. In none was there a stronger bond 
of union from a reciprocity of benefits, or a fainter prospect 
of contention from the interference of their respective pursuits. 
The colony consumed an immensity of British manufactures, 
which she could neither make for herself nor purchase else- 
where on equal terms, and for the payment of which she had 
ample means in her valuable native commodities. The 
exchange of one for the other, was a basis of profitable com- 
merce. Carolina, satisfied with her political condition, did 
not covet independence. It was forced upon her as the only 
means of extrication from the grasp of tyranny, exerted to 
enforce novel claims of the mother country, subversive of 
liberty and happiness. These claims were brought forward 
soon after the peace of Paris; and dissipated all the hopes 
which were fondly indulged, that Great Britain would main- 
tain a pre-eminent rank in America. At this inauspicious 
period the scheme of a revenue to be laid by the British Par- 
liament, and collected in the colonies without the consent of 
their local legistatures, was introduced. The British min- 
istry were prompted to this innovation by the immense load 
of national debt, incurred during the war which in that year* 
had terminated. They conceived that every part of their do- 
minions should pay a proportion of the public debt and that 
the Parliament of Great Britain, as the supreme power, was 
constitutionally invested with a right to lay taxes on every 
part of the empire. This doctrine, so plausible in itself, and 
so conformable to the letter of the British constitution when 
the whole dominions were represented in one Assembly, was 
reprobated in the colonies as subversive of their rights and 
contrary to the spirit of the same government when the 
empire became so far extended as to have many distinct repre- 
sentative assemblies. The colonists conceived that the chief 
excellence of the British constitution consisted in the right 
of the people to grant or withhold taxes, and in their having 
a share in the enacting of the laws by which they were to be 
governed. In the mother country it was asserted to be essen- 
tial to the unity of the empire, that the British Parliament 
should have a right of taxation over every part of their 
extended dominions. In the colonies it was believed that 
taxation and representation were inseparable, and that they 
could neither be free nor happy if their property could be 


taken from them without their consent The patriots in the 
American assemblies insisted that it was essential to liberty 
and happiness, that the people should be taxed by those only 
who were chosen by themselves and had a common interest' 
with them. Mr. Locke's celebrated position " that no man 
has a right to that which another has a right to take from him," 
was often quoted as a proof that British taxation virtually an- 
nihilated American property. 

Every thing in South Carolina contributed to nourish a spirit 
of liberty and independence. Its settlement was nearly coeval 
with the revolution in England; and many of its inhabitants 
had imbibed a large portion of that spirit, which brought one 
tyrant to the block and expelled another from his dominions. 
Every inhabitant was, or easily might be a freeholder. Settled 
on lands of his own, he was both farmer and landlord. Having 
no superiors to whom he was obliged to look up, and pro- 
ducing all the necessaries of life from his own grounds, he 
soon became independent 

The first statute that roused general and united opposition 
to British taxation was the memorable stamp act, passed in 
the year 1765. By this it was enacted, that the instruments 
of writing which are in daily use amongst a commercial peo- 
ple should be void in law unless they were executed on 
stamped paper, or parchment, charged with a duty imposed 
by the British Parliament A less extensive tax might have 
passed unobserved by the unsuspecting colonists; but the 
»stamp act was so intimately connected with all public and 
private business that an united vigorous opposition to it was 
judged indispensably necessary. To concert an uniform line 
of conduct to be adopted by the differnt colonies on this trying 
occasion, a Congress of deputies from each province was re- 
commended. This first step, towards continental union, was 
adopted in South Carolina before it had been agreed to by any 
colony to the southward of New England. The example of 
this province had a considerable influence in recommending 
the measures to others who were more tardy in their concur- 
rence. The colonies on this occasion not only presented 
petitions, but entered into associations against importing British 
manufactures till the stamp act should be repealed. On the 
18th of March 1766, that favorite point was obtained. This 
concession had the effect of inspiring the Americans with high 
ideas of the necessity of their trade to Great Britain. The 
experiment of taxation was renewed in the year 1767, but in 
a more artful manner. Small duties were imposed on glass, 
paper, tea, and painter's colors. The colonists again petitioned 
and associated to import no more British manufactures. In 
consequence of which, all the duties were taken off excepting 


three pence a pound on tea. Unwilling to contend with the 
mother country about paper claims, and at the same time 
determined to pay no taxes hut such as were imposed by their 
own legislatures, the colonists associated to import no more 
tea; but relaxed in all their other resolutions, and renewed 
their commercial intercourse with Great Britain. 

The tax on tea was in a great measure rendered a barren 
branch of revenue, by the American resolution, of importing 
none on which the parliamentary duty was charged. In the 
year 1773 a scheme was adopted by the East India Company, 
to export large quantities of that commodity, to be sold on their 
account in the several capitals of the British colonies. This 
measure tended directly to contravene the American resolu- 
tions. The colonists reasoned with themselves, that as the 
duty and the price of the commodity were inseparably blended 
if the tea was sold, every purchaser would pay a tax imposed 
by the British parliament as part of the purchase-money. 
Jealous of the designs of the mother country, and determined 
never to submit to British taxation, they everywhere entered 
into combinations to obstruct the sales of the tea sent out by 
the East India Company. The cargoes sent to South Carolina 
were stored, the consignees being restrained from exposing it 
to sale. In other provinces, the landing of it being forbidden, 
the captains were obliged to return without discharging their 
cargoes. In Boston, a few men in disguise threw into th-e river 
all that had been exported to that city by the East India Com- 
pany. This trespass on private property provoked the British 
Parliament to take legislative vengeance on that devoted town. 
An act was immediately passed, by which the port thereof was 
virtually blocked up by being legally precluded from shipping 
or landing any goods, wares or merchandize. Other acts di- 
rected by the same policy speedily followed. One of them 
was entitled, "An Act for the better regulating the Government 
of Massachusetts.'' The object of this was essentially to alter 
the charter of the province. By it the whole executive gov- 
ernment was taken out of the hands of the people, and the 
nomination of all officers vested in the King or his Governor. 
Soon after followed an act in which it was provided that 
if any person was indicted for murder, or for any other cap- 
ital offence committed in aiding the magistracy, that the Govt 
ernor might send the person so indicted to another colony, or 
to Great Britain, to be tried. These proceedings, no less con- 
trary to the British constitution than to the chartered rights of 
the colonies, were considered as the beginning of a new sys- 
tem of colonial government, by which the provinces were to 
De reduced to a much greater degree of dependence on the 
mother country than they had ever experienced. A general 


confederacy to aid the province of Massachusetts in opposing 
the execution of these unconstitutional acts very soon took 

The proceedings of parliament were no sooner known in 
Boston than the inhabitants were thrown into the greatest 
consternation. Sundry town meetings were called to deliber- 
ate on the alarming state of public affairs. At one of them, 
viz: on May 13, 1774, the following vote was passed: 

" That it is the opinion of this town, that if the other colo- 
nies come into a joint resolution to stop all importation from 
Great Britain, and exportation to Great Britain and the West 
Indies, till the act for blocking up this harbor be repealed, the 
same will prove the salvation of North America and her liber- 
ties. On the other hand, if they continue their exports and 
imports, there is high reason to fear that fraud, power, and the 
most odious oppression, will rise triumphant over justice, 
right, social happiness and freedom. And, moreover, that this 
vote be transmitted by the moderator to all our sister colonies, 
in the name and behalf of this town.'' 

A copy of this vote was immediately forwarded to the other 
provinces. Upon its arrival in South Carolina, it was pre- 
sented to a number of the principal gentlemen in Charlestown. 
They were of opinion that the principles of policy and self- 
preservation made it necessary to support the people of Boston; 
but the mode pointed out was a matter of too much conse- 
quence to be adopted without the general consent of the peo- 
ple. It was therefore determined to request a meeting of the 
inhabitants. That this might be as general as possible, cir- 
cular letters were sent by express to every parish and district 
within the province. In consequence of this invitation a very 
great number, some of whom were from almost every part of 
South Carolina, met on the 6th of July, 1774, at Charlestown. 
The proceedings of the parliament against the town of Boston 
and province of Massachusetts were distinctly related to this 
convention of the people. On which, without one dissenting 
voice, they adopted resolutions declaratory of their rights, for 
supporting the people of Boston by voluntary contribution, and 
for organizing committees. They also adopted the following 
appropriate resolutions : " That the late act for shutting up 
the port of Boston, and the other late acts relative to Boston 
and the province of Massachusetts, are calculated to deprive 
many thousand Americans of their rights, properties and 
privileges, in a most cruel, oppressive and unconstitutional man- 
ner, are most dangerous precedents ; and though levelled imme- 
diately at the people of Boston, very manifestly and glaringly 
show, if the inhabitants of that town are intimidated into a 
mean submission of said acts, that the like are designed for 


all the colonies; when not even the shadow of liberty to his 
person, or of security to his property, will be left to any of his 
majesty's subjects residing on the American continent. 

"Resolved, therefore, That the soundest principles of true 
policy and self-preservation make it absolutely necessary for 
the inhabitants of all the colonies in America to assist and 
support the people of Boston, by all lawful ways in their 
power, and to leave no justifiable means untried to procure a 
repeal of those acts immediately relative to them, and also 
all others affecting the constitutional rights and liberties of 
America in general. As the best means to effect this desira- 
ble end, 

"Resolved, That Henry Middleton, John Rutledge, Christo- 
pher Gadsden, Thomas Lynch and Edward Rudedge, Es- 
quires, be, and they are hereby, appointed deputies on the 
part and behalf of this colony, to meet the deputies of the 
several colonies in North America in general Congress, to 
consider the act lately passed, and bills depending in Parlia- 
ment, with regard to the port of Boston and province of Mas- 
sachusetts, which act and bills, in the precedent and conse- 
quence, affect the whole continent; also the grievances under 
which America labors, by reason of the several acts of Parlia- 
ment that impose taxes or duties for raising a revenue, with 
full power and authority, in behalf of us and our constituents, 
to concert, agree to, and effectually to prosecute such legal 
measures by which we for ourselves, and them, most solemnly 
engage to abide, as in the opinion of the said deputies, and of 
the deputies so to be assembled, shall be most likely to obtain 
a repeal of the said acts, and a redress of these grievances." 

This Convention of the people, and these resolutions, laid 
the foundation of all the subsequent proceedings, which ulti- 
mately terminated in a revolution.* The deputies appointed 
on this occasion, in a little time, sailed for Philadelphia, and 
were soon joined by others invested with similar powers by 
the several provinces. 

* Every atom of political power now exercised in and over the people and State 
of South Carolina, is a ramification derived from what was granted by the last of 
these resolutions. The people, by virtue of their inherent right to resist the ille- 
gal oppression of their rulers, delegated full powers to five men of their own 
choice to take care of their political interests, and promised to abide by what they 
might resolve upon. Power thus liberally granted was faithfully and judiciously 
used. The germ of representative government then planted, has grown up to the 
tree of liberty and happiness, under the shade of which the people of South 
Carolina enjoy as great a proportion of social blessings as in any country or age 
has fallen to the lot of man. On this memorable day, the aged declared their wil- 
lingness to sacrifice the remnant of their days rather than submit to the oppressive 
acts of Britain. The young, with greater ardor, engaged to resist to the last ex- 
tremity, and if they should survive all prospect of successful resistance, that they 
would retire from civilized society and take up their abode with the savages of 
the wilderness. 



In this manner, by the general consent of the people and 
the universal alarm for their liberties, a new representative 
body, with powers to bind all the American provinces, was 
speedily constituted. The Continental Congress having, on 
the 26th of October, 1774, finished their deliberations, the 
South Carolina members returned home, and gave an account 
of their proceedings, the most important of which were as 
follows : A state of American claims, particularly of their ex- 
clusive right to tax themselves and to regulate their internal 
polity ; a petition to the King, stating their grievances and 
praying a repeal of thirteen acts of Parliament, which im- 
posed taxes on them, or interfered in their internal govern- 
ment, and an association to suspend importations of British 
goods, and the exportation of American produce, till these 
grievances were redressed. They also addressed the people of 
Great Britain and the inhabitants of the colonies. With great 
energy of language, they justified their proceedings to both, and 
endeavored to dissuade the former from aiding any attempt 
on their liberties, and the latter from a tame relinquishment 
of them. To give efficacy to the measures adopted by the 
deputies at Philadelphia, it was determined, by the general . 
committee in Charlestown, to convene a Provincial Congress, 
by electing representatives from every parish and district in 
South Carolina, and to submit the proceedings of the Conti- 
nental Congress to their judgment. As the measures about 
to be adopted depended entirely on the consent of the people, 
a very large representation was thought advisable. The Con- 
stitutional Assembly consisted only of forty-nine members, 
but this new representative body consisted of 184. The 
members of the Constitutional Assembly were universally 
members of the Congress, but with this difference, that in the 
latter capacity they could neither be prorogued nor dissolved 
by the royal (lovernor. This first Provincial Congress met on 
the nth January, 1775, and took under consideration the pro- 
ceedings of the Continental Congress at Philadelphia, in the 
close of the preceding year. Without one dissenting voice, 
they gave public thanks to their late deputies to the Conti- 
nental Congress, approved their proceedings, resolved to carry 
them into execution, and re-appointed the same delegates to 
the next Continental Congress. Lest the selfishness of indi- 
viduals might break through the public resolutions, commit- 
tees of inspection and observation were appointed, whose 
business it was to see that they were universally obeyed. 
This same body also passed an unanimous resolution, that in 
their opinion no action for any debt should be commenced or 
proceeded in without the permission of the committee where 
the defendant resided, and that the committee should give 


permission for bringing suits where the debtors refused to 
renew their obligations or to give reasonable security, or were 
justly suspected of intentions to leave the province or to de- 
fraud their creditors. They also recommended to all the in- 
habitants to be diligent and attentive in learning the use of 
arms, and at the same time recommended to them to set apart 
the 17th day of February, 1775, as a day of fasting, humilia- 
tion and prayer before Almighty God, devoutly to petition Him 
" to inspire the King with true wisdom to defend the people of 
North America in their just title to freedom, and to avert from 
them the calamities of civil war," and requested the several 
ministers of the gospel throughout the colony to prepare and 
deliver suitable discourses on the solemn occasion. 

These recommendations for arming and praying, were car- 
ried into effect with equal zeal. A military spirit pervaded 
the whole country, and Charlestown soon had the appearance 
of a garrison town. Volunteer companies were formed, and 
almost daily exercised. Children, in imitation of their supe- 
riors, were often to be seen going through the manual exer- 
cise with something in the resemblance of a gun. In these 
times that tried men's souls, the epithets of aristocrat and 
democrat were never heard. The poor wished for the counte- 
nance and influence of the rich. The wise and distinguished 
few sought for the strength of the many. Wealth and wis- 
dom, nerves and numbers were put in requisition for the 
public service. Each depended on the other, and all knew 
that their united vigorous exertions were indispensably neces- 
sary. Joining foot to foot and hand to hand, they, with one 
mind, presented the whole body of the people, a solid phalanx, 
opposing their energies and resources to the introduction of 
arbitrary power. 

. The first of February, 1775, was the day fixed by the Con- 
tinental Congress, after which no British goods should be 
imported. Notwithstanding the solemnity with which the 
resolutions had been adopted, severa) vessels, loaded with 
British goods, arrived in the harbor after that period. It was, 
doubtless, presumed by many that an association so contrary 
to the immediate interest and convenience of such great 
numbers, would be either violated or evaded. But, to their 
great surprise, they found the resolutions so well observed 
that a single article could not be landed, and that they must 
either throw overboard or send back their cargoes. 

In this manner, while the form of the old government sub- 
sisted, a new and independent authority was virtually estab- 
lished. It was so universally the sense of the people that the 
public good required a compliance with the resolutions of 
Congress, that any man who discovered an anxiety about the 


continuance of trade and business was considered a selfish 
individual, prefering private interest to the good of his coun- 
try. Under the influence of these principles, the intemperate 
zeal of the populace transported them frequently so far beyond 
the limits of moderation as to apply singular punishments to 
particular persons who contravened the general sense of the 

This was the third time that a scheme of non-importation 
had been adopted. From its success on two former occasions, 
and an apprehension that the trade of America was necessary 
to the inhabitants of Great Britain, it was generally hoped 
the obnoxious acts would soon be repealed. An appeal to 
arms, independence, and an alliance with France, were events 
at this period neither intended nor expected. A bloodless 
self-denying opposition was all that South Carolina designed, 
and was all the sacrifice which, as she supposed, would be 
required at her hands. 

During the first three months of the year 1775, hopes were 
entertained that Great Britain would follow the same line of 
policy which before had led her to repeal the stamp act. On 
the 1 9th of April, 1775, a packet from London reached Charles- 
town, but with intelligence subversive of the pleasing hopes 
of a speedy accommodation.* On that same day hostilities 
were commenced at Lexington, in the Massachusetts, by a 
detachment from the royal army at Boston, against the inhab- 
itants of that province. A particular account of that bloody 
scene was soon brought to the general committee in Charles- 
town. No event during the war seemed so universally to 
interest the minds of the people. All were struck with the 
new face of things, and viewed the contest in a much more 
serious light. From every appearance. Great Britain, instead 
of redressing American grievances, was determined to dragoon 
the colonists into submission. The spirit of freedom, beating 
high in every breast, could not brook the idea; while reason, 

* This was obtained in the following manner. A secret committee had been 
appointed, who agreed to watch the arrival of the British packet, and to lake pos- 
session of the mail. When it arrived, it was peremptorily demanded by William 
Henry Drayton, John Neufville, and Thomas Corbett, the members of that com- 
mittee. The post-master refused and protested, but these three gentlemen took 
charge of the mail and carried it o'fTto the general committee. The private letters 
were returned unopened to the post office, but public dispatches from the British 
government to the Governors of Virginia, the two Carolinas, Georgia, and East 
Florida, were opened and read. These furnished abundant evidence of the deter- 
mination of England to coerce America by a military force. About the same 
time a letter from Governor Wright, of Georgia, to General Gage, commander of 
the King's army, then in Boston, was intercepted by the secret committee. It 
contained a request to General Gage to send a detachment of his majesty's forces 
to awe the people of Georgia. The secret committee took out this letter and put 
another in its place, with an imitation of Wright's signature subscribed, in which 
General Gage was informed "that there was no occasion for sending' any troops 
to Georgia, as the people, convinced of their error, were come again to order.' 


more temperate in her decisions, suggested to the people their 
insufficiency to make effectual opposition. They were fully 
apprised of the power of Britain — they knew that her fleets 
covered the ocean, and that her flag had waived in triumph 
through the four quarters of the globe. They knew that they 
were exposed on their western frontiers to the irruptions of 
savage tribes, whose common rule of warfare is promiscuous 
carnage — and they were not ignorant that their slaves might 
be worked upon, by the insidious offer of freedom, to slay 
their masters in tlie peaceful hour of domestic security. The 
province, through its whole extent on the sea coast, which is 
nearly two hundred miles, was accessible to the fleets and 
armies of Great Britain. For defence, it possessed but a few 
fortifications, too inconsiderable for particular notice, and even 
these were held by the officers of the King. The royal Gov- 
ernor was Commander-in-Chief of the militia; and all the 
officers, being of his appointment, held their commissions 
during his pleasure. The inhabitants were quite defence- 
less — without arms — without ammunition — without cloth- 
ing — without ships — without money — without officers skilled 
in the art of war. The stores of the merchants afforded no 
supplies, as the importation of arms had been restrained by 
the resolutions of Congress. That Great Britain would com- 
mence hostilities, was not imagined — that America should 
have recourse to arms, was not originally intended. Twelve 
hundred stand of muskets were in the royal magazine, but 
they could not be obtained without the commission of an overt 
act of treason. However, this alarming crisis of public affairs 
stripped reason of its wonted terrors. All statutes of allegi- 
ance were considered as repealed on the plains of Lexington, 
and the laws of self-preservation left to operate in full force. 
Accordingly, on the night after intelligence of actual hostilities 
was received, a number of the principal gentlemen in Charles- 
town concerted a plan to take possession of the arms and 
accoutrements in the royal arsenal, which they instantly car- 
ried into execution. They removed them that night from the 
arsenal, and afterwards distributed them among the men en- 
listed in the public service. Lieutenant-Governor Bull im- 
mediately offered a reward of one hundred pounds sterling, 
to any person who should discover the persons concerned in 
this business ; but such as had the power had not the inclina- 
tion, while the few who had the inclination were afraid to 
incur the risk of informing. 

Hitherto the opposition to Great Britain had been entirely 
conducted on commercial principles; but as she turned a deaf 
ear to the petitions and remonstrances of the colonists, and 
resolved to force their obedience, they now found themselves 


with no alternative left but a mean submission or a manly 
and virtuous resistance. Tliough the colonists to the south- 
ward of Boston w;ere not immediate sufferers, yet they were 
sensible that a foundatioa was laid for every species of future 
oppression. The newspapers and other publications, through 
all the colonies, were filled with arguments and declamations 
to the following effect: "If a British parliament, in which we 
are unrepresented, has a right to shut up oiir ports, to tax us 
at pleasure, to abolish our charters, and to bind us in all cases 
whatsoever, we are tenants at will, depending on the good 
humor of our fellow subjects for all our possessions." 

In this new state of matters, the Provincial Congress was 
immediately summoned by the general committee to meet in 
twenty-three days at Charlestown. 

So great was the zeal of the inhabitants, and so general the 
alarm throughout the province, that one hundred and seventy- 
two members met on the day appointed, and proceeded with 
such assiduity that they finished a great deal of important 
business in a short session of twenty-two days. Great were 
the objects which came before this Assembly. Hitherto the only 
sacrifices demanded at the shrine of liberty, were a suspension 
of trade and business; but now the important question was 
agitated, whether it was better to " live slaves or die free men.'' 

On the second day of their meeting it was unanimously 
resolved that an association was necessary. The following 
one was drawn up and signed by their President, Henry Lau- 
rens, and all the members present; and afterwards very gen- 
erally by the inhabitants. It was also offered to Lieutenant 
Governor William Bull, who was a native of the province, 
and had a large estate in it ; but he refused to add his name. 

"Tlie actual commencement of hostilities against this con- 
tinent by the British troops, in the bloody scene on the 19th 
of April last, near Boston — the increase of arbitrary imposi- 
tions from a wicked and despotic ministry — and the dread of 
insurrections in the colonies, are causes sufficient to drive an 
oppressed people to the use of arms. We, therefore, the sub- 
scribers, inhabitants of South Carolina, holding ourselves 
bound by that most sacred of all obligations — the duty of good 
citizens towards an injured country, and thoroughly convinced 
that, under our present distressed circumstances, we shall be 
justified before God and man, in resisting force by force — do 
unite ourselves under every tie of religion and honor, and as- 
sociate as a band in her defence against every foe — hereby 
solemnly engaging that, whenever our continental or provin- 
cial councils shall decree it necessary, we will go forth and be 
ready to sacrifice our lives and fortunes to secure her freedom 
and safety. This obligation to continue in full force until a 


reconciliation shall take place between Great Britain and Amer- 
ica, upon constitutional principles — an event which we most 
ardently desire. And we will hold all those persons inimical 
to the liberty of the colonies who shall refuse to subscribe this 

Within three days after, it was resolved to raise two regi- 
ments of foot and a regiment of rangers, and to put the town 
and province in a respectable posture of defence. These 
resolutions were deliberately agreed to, after counting the cost. 
The language of the times was, «we will freely give up half, 
or even the whole of our estates, for the security of our liber- 
ties." To defray these expenses, bills of credit were struck, 
which, without being a tender in law, and though founded on 
nothing but the consent and enthusiasm of the people, re- 
tained their credit undiminished for eighteen months, and 
answered every purpose of a circulating medium. 

So great was the military ardor among the gentlemen of the 
province, that the candidates for commissions in the proposed 
regiments were four times as numerous as could be employed ; 
and in their number were many of the first families and for- 
tune. In making a selection among the numerous candidates 
that offered, care was taken to choose men of influence, de- 
cision and spirit, residing in different parts of the province, so 
as to unite all its energies in the common cause. Four or five 
had the recommendation of having served in the war of 1756, 
but the other candidates were preferred solely on the ground 
of their possessing the natural qualifications requisite for mak- 
ing good officers, in addition to their holding an influential 
rank among their fellow citizens. 

In this manner, in a few weeks after the Lexington battle, 
the popular leaders became possessed of an army and treasury 
at their command. The militia officers also, having resigned 
their commissions under the royal Governor, were, by their 
own consent, subjected to the orders of the Provincial Con- 
gress. The following gentlemen were chosen a council of 
safety: Henry Laurens, Charles Pinckney, Rawlins Lowndes, 
Thomas Ferguson, Miles Brewton, Arthur Middleton, Thomas 
Heywood, Junior, Thomas Bee, John Huger, James Parsons, 
William Henry Drayton, Benjamin Elliott, and William Wil- 
liamson. To this council the Provincial Congress delegated 
authority to certify commissions,* to suspend officers, and to 
order courts-martial for their trial; to have the direction, regu- 

*This phraseology was used as a defence against the charge of treason and 
rebellion. They did not grant commissions, but barely certified that such had 
been granted by the Provincial Congress. At this period they, and other popular 
leaders, considered themselves as acting vifith ropes about their necks ; and well 
knew that want of success would make that a rebellion, which otherwise might 
be a revolution. They all knew the consequences of the battle at CuUoden. 


lation, maintenance and ordering of the army, and of all mili- 
tary establishments and arrangements; and to draw on the 
treasury for the demands of the public service. 

During the sitting of this Congress, which had in so many 
instances invaded the royal prerogative, Lord William Camp- 
bell, Governor of the province, arrived, and was received with 
all the demonstrations of joy usual on similar occasions. The 
Provincial Congress waited on him with an address, in which 
they observed: "We declare that no love of innovation, no 
desire of altering the constitution of government, no lust of 
independence, has had the least influence upon our counsels; 
but, alarmed and roused by a long succession of arbitrary pro- 
ceedings by wicked administrations, impressed with the great- 
est apprehension of instigated insurrections, and deeply af- 
fected by the commencement of hostilities by tlie British 
troops against this continent, solely for the preservation and in 
defence of our lives, liberties and properties, we have been 
impelled to associate and to take up arms. 

"We only desire the secure enjoyment of our invaluable 
rights, and we wish for nothing more ardently than a speedy 
reconciliation with our rhother country, upon constitutional 

"Conscious of the justice of our cause and the integrity of 
our views, we readily profess our loyal attachment to our sov- 
ereign, his crown and dignity; and, trusting the event to Pro- 
vidence, we prefer death to slavery. 

"These things we have thought it our duty to declare, that 
your excellency, and through you our august sovereign, our 
fellow subjects, and the whole world may clearly understand 
that our taking up arms is the result of dire necessity, and in 
compliance with the first law of nature. 

"We intreat and trust that your excellency will make such 
a representation of the state of this colony, and of our true 
motives, as to assure his majesty, that in the midst of all our 
complicated distresses, he has no subjects in his wide extended 
dominion who inore sincerely desire to testify their loyalty 
and affection, or who would be more willing to devote their 
lives and fortune in his real service." 

To this address Lord William Campbell answered, that he 
knew of no representatives of the people of this province, 
except those constitutionally convened in the General Assem- 
bly; and was incompetent to judge of the disputes which at 
present unhappily subsisted between Great Britain and the 
American colonies; and that no representation should ever 
be made by him but what was strictly consistent with truth 
and with an earnest endeavor to promote the real happiness 
and prosperity of the province. 


Opposition having been carried much further by this Con- 
gress than was originally intended at the time of their election, 
they resolved to give the people a fresh opportunity to express 
their unbiassed judgment on the state of public affairs. They 
therefore detarmined that their own existence as a body should 
expire on the 6th of August following, and that a new election 
should be held on the two succeeding days for a new Provin- 
cial Congress. On the 22d of June, 1775, they adjourned, 
having first delegated a great part of their authority to the 
council of safety and the general committee; the former of 
which was in the nature of an executive, and the latter of a 
legislative authority. It was particularly recommended to the 
general committee to take effectual methods to have the asso- 
ciation signed throughout the province, and to demand from 
the non-subscribers the reasons of their refusal. Excepting in 
that part of the country included between the Broad and Saluda 
rivers, the non-subscribers were comparatively few. In Charles- 
town, where the general committee sat, their number amounted 
to about forty. The greatest part of these were officers, living 
on salaries paid by his Britannic Majesty. They, and others 
in the same predicament, were advertised as inimical to the 
liberties of America, and all intercourse between them and the 
associators was interdicted. An oath of neutrality was required 
of all, to which some agreed. Those who refused were dis- 
armed; and a few, who would not enter into any engagements 
for the public security, were confined to their houses and plan- 

The people having concurred with the views of Congress 
in a military opposition, various plans were suggested for the 
defence of the province. Some thought it necessary to ob- 
struct the bar, by sinking vessels so as to exclude the approach 
of ships-of-war. Others proposed abandoning the town, and 
making their stand in the country. Many measurements 
were made and much expense incurred, to accomplish the 
first, but it was at last abandoned as impracticable. Never- 
theless, a spirited resolution was adopted to defend the town 
to the last extremity. 

At the time these military preparations were making, the 
whole quantity of powder in the province did not exceed 
three thousand pounds. The people not originally designing 
a military opposition, no care was taken to provide stores; but 
now, reduced to the alternative of fighting or submitting, ex- 
traordinary methods were taken to obtain a supply. 

Twelve persons, authorized by the council of safety, sailed 
from Charlestown, and by surprise boarded a vessel near the 
bar of St. Augustine, though twelve British grenadiers were 
on board, they took out fifteen thousand pounds of powder, 


for which they gave a bill of exchange to the captain, and 
having secured a safe retreat to themselves by spiking the 
guns of the powder vessel, set sail for Carolina. Apprehend- 
ing that they should be pursued, they steered for IJeaufort, 
From that place they came by the inland navigation, and 
delivered their prize to the council of safety, whilst their pur- 
suers were looking for them at the bar of Charlestown. This 
seasonable supply enabled the people of South Carolina to 
oblige their suffering brethren in Massachusetts; who, though 
immediately exposed to the British army, were in a great 
measure destitute of that necessary article of defence. Though 
the popular leaders had determined on a military opposition, yet 
fort Johnson, on James island, which commanded the harbor 
of Charlestown, continued in possession of the King's servants 
for more than three months after these resolutions were 
adopted. The Tamar sloop-of-war, and Cherokee armed 
vessel of eignteen guns, belonging to his Britannic majesty, 
lay in Rebellion road, opposite to Sullivan's Island; but the 
royal officers, either from an apprehension that indiscriminate 
violence could not to be justified, or from a contempt of the 
popular party, attempted nothing vigorous or decisive. 

About the middle of September, 1775, the general committee 
became possessed of intelligence, obtained by artifice, directly 
from Lord William Campbell, "that troops would soon be 
sent out to all the colonies." On the next evening it was 
resolved, "that proper measures ought to be immediately taken 
to prevent fort Johnson being made use of to the prejudice of 
the colony.'' Colonel Motte, with a party of the new raised 
provincials, was appointed to execute this first military enter- 
prise under the authority of the council of safety. Before he 
landed on the Island the fort was dismantled, the guns dis- 
mounted, and the people belonging to it retired on board the 
Cherokee and Tamar. On the following night Captain Hey- 
ward, with thirty-five of the Charlestown artillery, landed at 
the fort; and notwithstanding an incessant rain, they had 
three guns ready for action before the dawning of day. The 
officers of the men-of-war, then in the harbor, discovered a 
strong inclination to fire upon the fort; but, for prudent rea- 
sons desisted from the attempt. 

The popular leaders issued orders forbidding the King's 
victuallers to supply the men-of-war with provisions and water, 
otherwise than from day to day. After sundry letters and 
messages had passed on this subject. Captain Thornborough, 
of the sloop Tamar, gave public notice, "that if his majesty's 
agents in Charlestown were not permitted regularly, and with- 
out molestation, to supply the King's ships Tamar and Chero- 
kee, with such provisions as he thought necessary to demand, 


he would not from that day, so far as it was in his power, 
suffer any vessel to enter the harbor of Charlestown, or depart 
from it." 

The new Provincial Congress met, agreeably to their origi- 
nal appointment, on the 1st of November 1775. On that day. 
Captain Thornborough sent his menacing letter to the chair- 
man of the general committee. This Congress had been 
chosen subsequent to the late resolution for raising troops, and 
resisting Great Britain. The royal servants presumed that 
the people at large would not justify these invasions of their 
master's prerogative ; and, as they had lately had an oppor- 
tunity given by a general and free election to express their 
real opinions on the state of the province, that the new Con- 
gress would reverse the determinations of the former. To the 
great surprise of the King's officers the new Provincial Con- 
gress, instead of receding from the resolutions of their prede- 
cessors, took methods to ward off the injuries that might arise 
from the execution of the menaces of Captain Thornborough. 
They sent out two armed pilot boats with orders to cruise near 
the bar, and to caution all vessels destined for Charlestown to 
steer for some other port. 

The late Congress in June had agreed to arm the colony; 
but many still shuddered at the idea of hostile operations 
against their former friends and fellow-subjects. It was at 
length, after much debating, resolved by the new Congress, 
on the 9th of November 1775, to direct the American officer 
commanding at fort Johnson, " by every military operation to 
endeavor to oppose the passage of any British naval arma- 
ment that might attempt to pass." Though the fort had been 
in the possession of the council of safety for near two months, 
yet a variety of motives restrained them from issuing orders 
to fire on the King's ships. When this resolution was adopted, 
they communicated it to Captain Thornborough, commander 
of the Tamar sloop-of-war. 

An open passage to the town, without approaching fort 
Johnson, was still practicable for the small royal armed ves- 
sels Tamar and Cherokee. It was therefore, at the same time, 
resolved to obstruct the passage through Hog Island channel. 
Captain Tufts was ordered to cover and protect the sinking of 
a number of hulks in that narrow strait. While he was en- 
gaged in this business on board a coasting schooner, which 
was armed for the security of the town and called the Defence, 
. the Tamar and Cherokee warped in the night of November 
12, 1775, within gun-shot of him and began a heavy cannon- 
ade. The inhabitants were alarmed, expecting that the town, 
in its defenceless state, would be fired upon ; but about sun- 
rise both vessels dropped down to their moorings in Rebellion 


road, without having done any material injury either to the 
schooner or to any of her crew. The schooner Defence re- 
turned a few shot, but they were equally ineffectual. This 
was the commencement of hostilities in South Carolina. 

On the evening of the same day, on which this attack was 
made, the Provincial Congress impressed for the public service 
the ship Prosper ; and appointed a committee to fit and arm 
her as a frigate-of-war. On the day following they voted that 
a regiment of artillery should be raised, to consist of three 
companies with one hundred men in each. A. vote was taken 
about the same time for a new council of safety. Ten of the 
former thirteen were re-elected, and Henry Middleton, David 
Oliphant, and Thomas Savage, added in the room of three 
others. Their powers were enlarged so far as to authorize 
them "to do all such matters and things relative to the 
strengthening, securing, and defending the colony as should 
by them be judged expedient and necessary." 

Agreeably to the menaces of Captain Thornborough, the 
King's ships in the road seized all the vessels within their 
reach which were either coming to CharJestown or going from 
it. These seizures commenced several weeks prior to the act 
of parliament for confiscating American property. 

After these unauthorized seizures of private property had 
been continued about six weeks, the council of safety took 
measures to drive the royal armed vessels out of the road of 
Charlestown.* Colonel Moultrie, with a party, took posses- 
sion of Haddreli's point and mounted a few pieces of heavy 
artillery on some, slight works. A few well directed shot from 
this post induced the Commanders of the Cherokee and Tamar 
to put out to sea. The harbor and road being clear, the 
council of safety proceeded in their plans of defence. They 
completed the fortifications at Haddreli's point, and at fort 
Johnson — continued a chain of fortifications in front of the 
town, both to the eastward and southward — and erected a new 
fort on James Island t6 the westward of fort Johnson, and a 
very strong one on Sullivan's Island. The militia were dili- 
gently trained; the provincial troops were disciplined, and 
every preparation made to defend the colony. 

In addition to the four regiments ordered to be raised in the 
year 1775, two regiments of riflemen were voted in February 

«An opinion generally prevailed that these small royal armed vessels could at 
any time destroy Charlestown by firing into it. As often as they bent their sails, 
an alarm was communicated that they were about to commence a bombardment. 
The inhabitants were for several months kept in daily painful expectation of 
such an event. 



Of the Extinction of Royal Authority , and of the Royalists. 

The legal representatives met twice in the Constitutional 
Assembly after the general meeting of the inhabitants on July 
6, 1774. In their iirst session, after that event, it was pri- 
vately determined to give the sanction of their branch of the 
legislature to the resolutions adopted by the inhabitants at 
their late convention, though they were well aware that any 
vote for that purpose would induce the royal Governor to 
exert his prerogative for their dissolution. After finishing the 
necessary public business, thespeaker of the house summoned 
a meeting of the members at a very early hour. A motion, 
previously prepared, was read and agreed to without any debate ; 
which gave the sanction of the Assembly to the resolutions 
adopted by the people at their late general meeting in July. 
The same words were used by the people in their general 
meeting, and by the legal representative in the constitutional 
Assembly ; and the same persons were members of both bodies. 
Lieutenant-Governor Bull endeavored to dissolve them while 
they were ratifying this resolution, but the business was com- 
pleted before a council could be convened. 

His majesty's justices made their last circuit in the spring 
of 1775. On this occasion William Henry Drayton, one of 
the assistant judges, and the only one who was born in Amer- 
ica, in his charge to the grand jury inculcated the same senti- 
ments which were patronized by the popular leaders. Soon after, 
he was elected President of ther Povincial Congress, and de- 
voted his great abihties with uncommon zeal to the support 
of the measures adopted by his native country. Before the 
next circuit, his colleagues having refused to sign the associa- 
tion, were disarmed and advertised as inimical to the liberties 
of America. Not long after, he was appointed Chief Justice 
by the voice of his country. 

Throughout the year 1775, and the first months of the year 
1776, the popular assemblies by words avowed their allegiance 
to the King of Great Britain. Even while they were arming 
themselves they endeavored to reconcile this conduct with 
their allegiance, alleging it was only in self-defence against 
ministerial tyranny and not for purposes hostile to the King of 
Great Britain. After the Provincial Congress had raised reg- 
ular troops Lord William Campbell gave commissions to the 
officers of volunteer companies of militia, which were formed 
and trained on the recommendation of the popular leaders. 
His Lordship also convened an assembly, and transacted 


public business with officers in the new provincial regiments 
who were also members of the Constitutional Legislature; but 
he dissolved them on the 15th of September 1775, and never 
afterwards issued writs for a new election. For three months 
after his arrival he was unmolested, though indefatigable in 
secretly fomenting opposition to the popular measures. About 
the middle of September Captain Adam M'Donald had the 
address to get himself introduced to his lordship under the 
feigned name of Dick Williams, a supposed confidential mes- 
senger from the back country royalists to the Governor. In 
this assumed character he was informed that his lordship 
had on the day before, received a letter from the King of Great 
Britain; setting forth, "that his majesty was determined 
speedily to send out troops to execute his schemes from one 
end of the continent to the other." With a view of encour- 
aging the royalists, the Governor gave an exaggerated account 
of the power of Britain and of her fixed resolution to compel 
the submission of America. He interspersed his discourse 
with the severest reflections on the new-fangled Congresses 
and committees. This conversation being speedily reported 
to the general committee they sent a deputation from their 
body, of which Captain M'Donald was one, to demand a com- 
miinication of his lordship's late dispatches from England 
and a perusal of his correspondence with the back country. 
All these requisitions being peremptorily refused, it was moved 
in the committee to take the Governor into immediate custody; 
but the proposition was rejected by a considerable majority. 
His lordship, mortified at the deception which had been 
passed upon him and distrustful of his personal safety in 
Charlestown, took the province seal with him, and retired ou 
board the Tamar sloop-of-war. In about a fortnight after, the 
general committee sent a deputation from their body with an 
address, inviting his return to Charlestown; in which they 
assured him, that while, agreeably to his own repeated decla- 
rations, he should take no active part against the good people 
of the colony, in the present arduous struggle for the preser- 
vation of their liberties, they should, to the utmost of their 
power, secure to his excellency that safety and respect for his 
person and character which the inhabitants of Carolina had 
ever wished to show to the representative of their sovereign, 
But his Lordship thought it most prudent to continue on board. 
Legislative, Executive and Judicial powers were insensibly 
transferred from their usual channels to a Provincial Congress, 
council of safety, and subordinate committees. The inhabi- 
tants, generally alarmed for their liberties, took sundry steps 
for their preservation. From their own impulse they met and 
chose their representatives in committees and Congresses. 


The power of these bodies was undefined; but by common 
consent it was comprised in the old Roman maxim : "To take 
care that the commonwealth should receive no damage." 
The ardor of the people, and their jealousy of the designs of 
Great Britain, gave the force of laws to their determinations. 
The voice of an approving country gave efficacy to the pro- 
ceedings of the committees. They supported the Provincial 
Congress; which, in its turn, gave an active energy to the 
resolutions of the Continental Congress. 

In this manner, without annihilating the forms of the an- 
cient regal constitution, a new government was in a short time 
introduced by the general consent of the people. 

Though this new establishment was efl"ected by the voice 
of a great majority — great in number, and in weight and in 
influence greater still; yet, it was not wholly without oppo- 
sition. Among the inhabitants of the back country, which 
had not been settled more than twenty years, many were 
uninformed or misinformed. In some neighborhoods their 
aff'ections were enstranged from each other by local hostilities 
and party divisions; which, a few years before, had been 
urged to the extremes of reciprocal hatred and violence, as 
has been related. 

There were also among them a considerable number who 
had settled on lands granted by the bounty of government. 
These hadbrought from Europe the monarchical ideas of their 
holding their possessions at the King's pleasure. They were 
therefore easily made to believe, that the immediate loss of 
their freeholds would be the probable consequence of their 
acceding to the American measures. 

Among a people who had so many reasons to love and fear 
their King, and who were happy under his government, it was 
no difficult matterfor Lord William Campbell to gain votaries 
to support the royal interest. 

His Lordship was unremitting in his endeavors to persuade 
these uninformed back settlers, that the power of Britain could 
never be effectually resisted by the feeble American colonies : 
that the whole dispute was about a trifling tax on tea, which, 
as they were not in the general habit of using, could not to 
them be interesting. It was frequently insinuated that the 
gentlemen on the sea coast, in order to obtain their tea free 
from tax, were adopting measures which would involve the 
back country in the want of salt and imported necessaries; 
and that the expenses of the new raised regiments would be 
infinitely more than the trifling taxes imposed by the British 

The people generally felt themselves secure in their persons 
and property. It was therefore easy to ofler arguments against 

144 HISTORY or 

renouncing present comforts, to ward off future evils. The 
popular leaders could not urge the inhabitants to the dangers 
and expenses of war, otherwise than on speculation to prevent 
the more alarming consequences which would probably take 
place at a future time, if the proceedings of the British Par- 
liament, against Boston and the province of Massachusetts, 
were suffered to pass into precedent. Distant evils weigh so 
little in the estimation of the multitude, that great scope was 
given to those who wished to head a party for submitting to 
the demands of Great Britain. 

Though there were some royalists in every part of the 
province the only settlement in which they out-numbered the 
friends of Congress, was in the fork between Broad and Sa- 
luda rivers. When it was determined to raise troops, the 
inhabitants of that part of the province could not be persuaded 
that the measure was necessary. Feeling themselves happy 
and free from present oppression they were averse from be- 
lieving that any designs, inimical to American liberty, had 
been adopted by the British government. Instead of signing 
the association, they signed papers, at their general musters, de- 
claring their unwillingness to concur in the measures recom- 
mended by Congress. The council of safety sent William 
Henry Drayton, and William Tennent, into their settlement, 
to explain to them the nature of the dispute and to bring 
them over to a co-operation with the other inhabitants. They 
had several public meetings, and much eloquence was exerted 
to induce them to sign the association. Some were convinced 
and subscribed that bond of union; but the greater number 
could not be persuaded that there was any necessity for Con- 
gresses, committees, or a military establishment. Suspicion 
began to exert her mischievous influence. The friends of the 
old government doubted the authenticity of all pamphlets, and 
newspapers, which ascribed to the British troops in Boston, or 
to the British government, any designs injurious to the rights 
of the colonists. They believed the whole to be an imposi- 
tion. The friends of Congress suspected the leading men of 
the royalists to be in the pay of Governor Campbell. Re- 
ports were circulated by one party, that a plan was laid to 
seize the commissioners sent by the council of safety; by the 
other, that the third provincial regiment was brought up to 
compel the inhabitants to sign the association. Motives and 
designs were reciprocally attribued to each other of the most 
ungenerous nature and mischievous tendency. The royalists 
embodied for reasons similar to those which had induced the 
other inhabitants to arm themselves against Great Britain, 
They suspected their adversaries of an intention to dragoon 
them into a compliance with the measures of Congress; and 


they, in their turn, were suspected of a design to commence 
hostilities against the associators for disturbing the estabUshed 
royal government. Camps were formed in opposition to each 
other, and great pains were taken to increase their respective 
numbers. Moderate men employed their good offices to prevent 
bloodshed. After some days, the leaders on both sides met 
in conference. Several explications having taken place a 
treaty was reciprocally agreed to ; by which it was stipulated 
that the royalists should remain in a state of neutrality. Both 
parties retired to their homes, and a temporary calm succeeded, 
Mr. Robert Cunningham, who had been a principal leader 
amon,g the royalists, continued to encourage opposition to the 
popular measures; and declared that he did not consider 
himself as bound tiy the treaty. This declaration was con- 
strued as an evidence of a fixed intention to disturb the peace 
by another insurrection. To prevent anything of that kind 
he was apprehended, brought to town, and committed to goal. 
Patrick Cunningham instantly armed a party of his friends, 
and pursued with the expectation of rescuing his brother. 
The party collected on this occasion seized a thousand pounds 
of power, which was at that juncture passing through their 
settlement. This was public property, and had been sent by 
the council of safety as a present to the Cherokee Indians. 
To inflame the minds of the people, some designing men 
among the royalists propagated a report that the powder was 
sent to the Indians accompanied with instructions to kill 
every man who should refuse to sign the association. This 
charge, entirely false in itself, was not believed by any of the 
well-informed inhabitants ; nevertheless it answered the pur- 
poses of party among some of the ignorant multitude. Great 
pains were also taken to exasperate the inhabitants against 
the council of safety, for furnishing the Indians with powder 
at a time when the white people could not be supplied with 
that necessary article. 

Major Williamson, who commanded the militia in favor of 
Congress, went in quest of the party which had taken the pub- 
lic powder, but was soon obliged to retreat before their superior 
numbers. The royalists, irritated by the capture of Cunning- 
ham, and flushed with success in seizing the powder, were at 
this time more numerous than at any other period. Major 
Williamson was reduced to the necessity of retreating into a 
stockade fort, in which he and his paity were confined without 
any water, till after three days by digging they obtained a 
scanty supply. The royahsts possessed themselves of the gaol 
of Ninety-Six, and from that station fired into the fort, but 
very little execution was done. After some days the assailants 
hoisted a flag, and proposed a truce. Reciprocal permission 


was given to forward expresses from the royalists to the Gov- 
ernor, and from Major Williamson to the council of safety. 
Both parties once more dispersed, and retired to their homes. 

Domestic division at this time was particularly to be dreaded. 
An invasion from Great Britain was soon expected.- A British 
fleet and army in front, and disaffected inhabitants in rear, 
threatened destruction to the friends of Congress. Lord Wil- 
liam Campbell had uniformly recommended to the royalists to 
remain quiet till the arrival of a British force. This advice, 
so well calculated to distract the views of the popular leaders, 
had been providentially frustrated. Similar reasons of policy 
to those which induced the royal Governor to recommend 
inaction to the royalists, operated with the council of safety 
to crush their intestine foes before that force should arrive. It 
was therefore judged necessary, for the public safety, to march 
an army into their settlements before that event should take 
place. To remove prejudices, a declaration was circulated 
throughout their settlements stating the views and designs of 
Congress — the necessity of the measures they had adopted,and 
the wisdom and policy of co-operating with them in defence of 
their common country. 

The Provincial Congress enforced their measures with an 
army sufficiently numerous to intimidate opposition. They 
sent a large body of militia and new raised regulars, under the 
command of Colonels Richardson and Thomson. They were 
also joined by nine hundred men from North Carolina. In a 
little time Congress had an army of two or three thousand men 
under their direction, with instructions "to apprehend the 
leaders of the party which had seized the powder, and to do 
all other things necessary to suppress the present and prevent 
future insurrections." Colonel Richardson proceeded in the 
execution of these orders with great moderation and propriety. 
A demand was made that the persons who had seized the 
powder should be delivered up to the justice of their country. 
Assurances were publicly given that no injury should be done 
to inoffensive persons, who would remain quietly on their 
plantations. The leaders of the royalists found great diffi- 
culty in persuading their followers to embody. They were cut 
off from all communication with Governor Campbell. Un- 
connected with their brethren, in other parts, there was no 
union in their measures. They were ' a rope of sand' with- 
out order and subordination, and without that enthusiasm 
which inspired the friends of Congress. Their leaders were 
destitute of political knowledge and without military expe- 
rience. The unanimity of the whigs, and the great numbers 
which, from all sides, invaded the settlements of the royalists, 
disheartened them from facing their adversaries in the field of 


battle. They saw resistance to be vain, and that the new 
government had much greater energy than they had supposed. 
The whigs acted by system, and in concert with their brethren 
in the adjacent States, and were directed by a council of safety 
composed of the wisest men in the province. They easily 
carried every point — seized the leaders of the royalists, and 
dispersed their followers. This decided superiority gave confi- 
dence to the popular leaders, and greatly strengthened their 
hands. The vanquished royalists retired to their plantations ; 
but on all occasions discovered as much obstinacy in opposing 
their countrymen, as their countrymen did firmness in oppo- 
sing Great Britain. Several of them, and of others who were 
averse from fighting, retired over the mountains, where, re- 
mote from the noise and bustle of war, they enjoyed that 
independence for which so many -were contending. In the 
year 177S, when every inhabitant was called on to take an 
oath of allegiance to the State, many of them voluntarily aban- 
noned their country for East Florida. In the same year, when 
the alliance between France and the United States of America 
was published, others of them nominally joined the Congress. 
After the reduction of Savannah, a considerable party rose a 
second time in favor of royal government ; but they were com- 
pletely routed on their way to the British emcampments in 
Georgia. They afterwards remained quiet till the British ob- 
tained possession of Charlestown. 

Excepting these ill-concerted insurrections no public body 
in the province, prior to the British conquests in the year 1780, 
gave avowed evidence of their disapprobation of the popular 
measures. Several in private, no doubt, complained ; but they 
contented themselves with secret murmurings. The number of 
slaves within the province, and of Indians on the western fron- 
tier, together with the large extent of unprotected sea coast. 
Were, in the opinion of some worthy men, insuperable obstacles 
to success in contending with Great Britain. Several, influ- 
enced by reasoning of this sort, would rather have tamely 
submitted to the encroachments of the mother country than 
risked the vengeance of her arms. 

The selfish, among the merchants and planters whose gains 
were lessened by the cessation of trade, wished for the return 
of business ; but the main body of both classes most heartily 
concurred with the popular measures. A great majority of 
the people determined to sacrifice ease, pleasure, and fortune; 
and to risk life itself, to obtain permanent security for Ameri- 
can rights. They believed their liberties to be in danger. 
Roused with this apprehension, they were animated to the 
most self-denying exertions. Beside their superiority in num- 
bers, there was an animation in the friends of Congress which 


was generally wanting in the advocates of royal government. 
Men of ardor for the most part sided with the former ; but the 
latter were chiefly composed of the ignorant, the selfish, and 
the timid. Vigorous and decisive measures characterized the 
popular party, while their opposers either acted without sys- 
tem, or from timid counsels which were feebly executed. ■ 

No revolution was ever eff'ected with greater unanimity, or 
with more order and regularity. The leading men in every 
part of the province, with very few exceptions, from the first 
moments of the contest, exerted themselves in the cause of 
their country. Their abilities and influence gave union and 
system to the proceedings of the people. A few perstms in 
the colony hated republican governments ; and some ignorant 
people were induced to believe that the whole was an artful 
deception, imposed upon them for interested purposes, by 
the gentlemen of fortune and ambition on the sea coast. But 
among the independent enlightened freemen of the province, 
who loved liberty and had spirit to risk life and fortune in its 
support, there were very few to be found who took part with 
the royalists. 


Of the Formation of a Regular Constitution. 

Till the year 1776, the opposition to Great Britain was con- 
ducted on such temporary principles, that the repeal of a few 
acts of parliament would have immediately produced a rein- 
statement of British government — a dissolution of the Amer- 
ican army — and a recommencement of the mercantile in- 
tercourse between the two countries. The refusal of Great 
Britain to redress the grievances of the colonies, suggested to 
some bold spirits, early in 1776, the necessity of going much 
greater lengths than was originally intended. 

A few penetrating minds foresaw that the love of dominion 
in the parent state, and the unconquerable love of liberty in 
America, would forever obstruct a cordial reconciliaiton ; but 
the bulk of the people still flattered themselves with the fond 
hopes of a re-union. 

Public aflairs were in confusion for want of a regular con- 
stitution. The impropriety of holding courts of justice under 
the authority of a sovereign against whom all the colony was 
in arms, struck every thinking person. The impossibility of 
governing a large community by the ties of honor, without 
the authority of law, was equally apparent. But, notwith- 
standing the pressing weight of all these considerations, the 
formation of an independent constitution had so much the 


appearance of an eternal separation from a country, by a re- 
conciliation with which many yet hoped for a return of ancient 
happiness, that a great part of the Provincial Congress opposed 
the necessary measure. At the very time when they were 
suspended on this important debate, an express arrived from 
Savannah, with an act of parliament, passed December 21, 
1775, confiscating American property, and throwing all the 
colonists out of his majesty's protection. This turned the 
scale — silenced all the moderate men who were advocates for 
a reconciliation — and produced a majority for an independent 
constitution. In less than an hour after that act was read in 
the Provincial Congress, an order was issued to seize for the 
public, the Port Henderson, a Jamaica vessel loaded with sugar, 
-which had put into Charlestown on herway to London; though 
she had the day before obtained leave to pass the forts, and 
would have sailed the same afternoon on her intended voyage. 

A law of the national parliament, which had thrown the 
colonies out of his majesty's protection, convinced the most 
lukewarm that America, legally discharged from her allegi- 
ance to the King of Great Britain, must now take care of 

So strong was the attachment of many to Great Britain, 
which they fondly called the mother country, that though they 
assented to the establishment of an independent constitution, 
yet it was carried, after a long debate, that it was only to exist 
" till a reconciliation between Great Britain and the colonies 
should take place." The friends of reconciliation believed 
that it was the dictate of sound policy, and in no respect in- 
compatible with the true honor and dignity of the parent 
state, to redress the grievances of the American colonies. The 
great body of the people would have rejoiced at such an event, 
and would with cheerfulness have returned to the class of 
peaceable citizens in the ancient line of subordination. They 
therefore only framed a temporary constitution, consisting of 
three branches, on the model of the British government. The 
Provincial Congress which formed this constitution, in con- 
formity to the example of their revolutionary predecessors in 
1719, voted themselves to be the General Assembly of South 
Carolina. They elected thirteen of their most respectable 
members to be a Legislative Council : they also elected a Pres- 
ident and vice president ; six privy counsellors to advise the 
president; a chief justice and three assistant judges; an attor- 
ney general; secretary; ordinary; judge of the admiralty; 
register of mesne conveyances.* The newly elected Presi- 

■^' These several offices were filled as follows : Members of the Legislative 
Council — Cliarles Pinckney, Le Roy Hammond, George Gabriel Powel, William 
Moultrie, Rawlins Lowndes, Stephen Bull, Thomas Shubrick, Richard Richard- 


dent, John Rutledge, took an oath to discharge his duty faith- 
fully, and made an impressive speech on the occasion. The 
Legislative Council and Genera! Assembly presented an affec- 
tionate address to the President, by which they engaged to 
" support him with their lives and fortunes." A solemn com- 
pact was thus estabUshed between- the people and their chief 
magistrate. Every department of government was organized 
on the representative system, and went into immediate opera- 

From this time forward, the public business was conducted 
agreeably to the fixed rules of the temporary constitution. 
Instead of resolutions of the congresses and committees, bills 
were brought in and debated, both in the Assembly and Leg- 
islative Council, deUberating apart and uninfluenced by each 
other. On their being agreed to by both houses, they were 
presented to the President for his assent. When duly enacted 
by the three branches of Legislature, they were carried into 
execution by the President and privy council. An act of 
Assembly was passed in this session ' for preventing sedi- 
tion and punishing insurgents and disturbers of the public 

By this law, treason and rebellion assumed a new form, 
and the penalties of these crimes were legally denounced 
against the aiders and abetters of British government. 

The courts of justices which had been shut for twelve 
months, were, with great solemnity, opened on the 23d of 
April, 1776, under the sanction of this temporary constitution. 
On that occasion, William H. Drayton, Chief Justice, under 
the appointment of the Provincial Congress, gave an interest- 
ing charge to the grand jury, in which he vindicated the pro- 
ceedings of his native country as just in themselves^ and jus- 
tified by what was done in England in 16S8. The charge 
concluded thus: " I think it my duty to declare in the awful 
seat of justice, and before Almighty God, that, in my opinion, 
the Americans can have no safety but by the Divine favor, 
their own virtue, and their being so prudent as not to leave it 
in the power of the British rulers to injure them. Indeed the 
ruinous and deadly injuries received on our side, and the jeal- 
ousies entertained, and which, in the nature of things, must 
daily increase against us on the other, demonstrate to a mind 

son, Thomas Fergu&on, John Kershaw, Henry Middleton, David Oliphant, Thomas 

John Rutledge, President. Henry Laurens, Vice President. W. H. Drayton, 
Chief Justice. Thomas Bee, John Mathews and Henry Pendleton, Assistant 
Judges. Alexander Moultrie, Attorney General. John Huger, Secretary. Wil- 
liam Burrows, Ordinary. Hugh Rutledge, Judge of the Admiralty. George 
.Speed, Register of Mesne Conveyances. 

Members of the Privy Council — James Parsons. John Edwards, Thomas Fer- 
guson, William I-I. Drayton, Charles Pinckney, Rawlins Lowndes. 


in the least given to reflection upon the rise and fall of empires, 
that true reconcilement never can exist between Great Britain 
and America: the latter being in subjection to the former. 
The Almighty created America to be independent of Britain: 
let us beware of the impiety of being backward to act as in- 
struments in the Almighty hand, now extended to accomplish 
His purpose; and by the completion of which alone, America, 
in the nature of human affairs, can be secure against the craft 
and insidious designs of her enemies who think her prosperity 
and power already by far too great. In a word, our piety and 
political safety are so blended, that to refuse our labors in this 
divine work, is to refuse to be a great, a free, a pious and a 
happy people ! 

"And now, having left the important alternative, political 
happiness or wretchedness under God, in a great degree in 
your own hands, I pray the Supreme Arbiter of the affairs of 
men so to direct your judgment as that you may act agreeably 
to what seems to be his will revealed in his miraculous works 
in behalf of America bleeding at the altar of liberty !'' 

The sentiments contained in this charge, from the bench of 
justice, were re-echoed from the grand juries in the different 
districts. This first General Assembly, agreeably to the con- 
stitution they had framed, was dissolved by their own act 
and a general election for members of the Legislature was 
immediately held throughout the State. Such was the union 
of the people, and so general their acquiescence in the meas- 
ures adopted by their representatives, that the former members 
were almost universally returned. The new Assembly met 
on the 6th of December, 1776, and in a few days after, re- 
chose the former President and Vice President. The govern- 
ment had energy, and was cheerfully obeyed. So much tran- 
quility reigned in every part of South Carolina, that after the 
departure of the British fleet and army in July, and the ter- 
mination of the Cherokee expedition in October, 1776, events 
which shall hereafter be more particulary explained, the bulk 
of the people were scarcely sensible of any revolution or that 
the country was at war. 

The policy of the rulers in departing as little as possible 
from ancient forms and names, made the change of sove- 
reignty less perceptible. The inhabitants had long been in 
the habit of receiving laws from a General Assembly and 
Council. The administration of the government in times 
past, on the demise of the Governor, had been uniformly com- 
mitted to one of the Council, under the title of President. 
The people felt themselves secure in their persons and pro- 
perties, and experienced all the advantages of law and govern- 
ment. These benefits were communicated under old names, 


though derived from a new sovereignty. Their ancient laws 
and customs were generally retained. The kingly office was 
dropped, and the revolution took place without any violence 
or convulsion. 

South Carolina was the first of the united colonies that 
formed an independent constitution ; it rested on the funda- 
mental point, that the voice of the people was the source of 
law, honor and office. Criminal prosecutions, which were 
formerly carried on in the name of the King, were, from that 
era, carried on in the name of the State. The same offices, 
with nearly the same duties and powers that had existed un- 
der the royal government, were continued under the popular 
establishment, but with this difference, that the officers ob- 
tained their places by the vote of the Legislature, and not 
from the appointment of the Crown. The majesty of the 
people took the place that had formerly been occupied by the 
kingly office. By this substitution, a change of government 
was easily and almost insensibly effected. The respect which, 
for time immemorial, had been attached to Kings as the vice- 
gerents of deity, and contributed to the support of their power, 
was transferred to those who, by public suffrages, were brought 
forward as substitutes of the people. Each individual thought 
that by honoring and supporting the men thus elected to pub- 
lic office, he honored himself as an unit in the mass of com- 
mon sovereignty from which all power was derived. 


Of the Attack of the Fort on Sullivan's Island, by Sir Peter 
Parker and Sir Henry Clinton, and the Invasion of the 
Cherokees by Colonel Williamson. 

Soon after a regular form of government was adopted, a 
formidable attack from Great Britain gave an opportunity of 
ascertaining its energy. Governor Campbell, from the time of 
his abandoning the province, had been assiduous in his at- 
tempts to procure a military force to reduce it to obedience. 
He represented the friends of royal authority as needing only 
the countenance of a small military force to give them an 
opportunity of embodying for the establishment of British 
government ; that Charlestown might be easily reduced, and 
that the reduction of it would restore the province to its former 
tranquility; Crown officers and their friends, the royalists, 
associating chiefly with one another, and not knowing or not 
believing the numbers, the resources, nor the enthusiasm of 
the opposite party, deceived themselves and communicated 
their delusions to the rulers in Great Britain. 


In the close of the year 1775, and the beginning of the 
year 1776, great preparations had been made in Great Britain 
to invade the American colonies with a force sufficient to 
compel submission. With this view, early in 1776 upwards 
of fifty thousand men were employed in active operations 
against America. Part of this force was ordered to the south- 
ward, to carry into effect in that quarter the designs of the 
British ministry. In South Carohna every exertion had been 
made to put the province, especially its capital, in a respecta- 
ble posture of defence. As one means conducing thereto, the 
popular leaders had erected works on Sullivan's Island. This 
is a very convenient post for annoying ships approaching the 
town. At the time the British fleet appeared off the coast, 
about twenty-six heavy cannon, twenty-six eighteen and nine 
pounders were mounted at Sullivan's Island, on a fort con- 
structed with palmetto. This is a tree peculiar to the South- 
ern States, which grows from twenty to forty feet high, without 
branches, and then terminates in something resembling the 
head of a cabbage. The wood of it is remarkably spongy. 
A bullet entering it makes no splinters nor extended fracture, 
but buries itself without injuring the parts adjacent. 

On the first of June, 1776, advices were received in Charles- 
town that a fleet of forty or fifty sail were at anchor about six 
leagues to the northward of Sullivan's Island. The next day 
the alarm was fired, and expresses sent to the officers com- 
manding the militia in the country to repair to Charlestown. 
In a few days after, several hundreds of the troops from the 
British fleet were landed on Long Island. This is situated to 
the eastward of Sullivan's Island, and separated from it by a 
creek. On the fourth of June, thirty-six of the transports 
crossed the bar, in front of Rebellion road, and anchored 
about three miles from Sullivan's Island ; two of them ran 
aground in crossing, one of which got off, but the other went 
to pieces. On the 10th of June, the Bristol, a fifty gun ship, 
her guns being previously taken out, got safely over. About 
this time a proclamation was sent ashore, under the sanction 
of a flag, in which the British General, Sir Henry Clinton, 
promised pardon to the inhabitants in case of their laying 
down their arms and quietly submitting to the re-establish- 
ment of royal government. This produced none of the effects 
expected from it. Tha militia of the country repaired in 
great numbers to Charlestown. The regular regiments of the 
adjacent northern States, having been ordered to the assist- 
ance of their southern neighbors, arrived at this critical junc- 
ture. The two continental General officers, Armstrong and 
Howe, came about the same time. The whole was put under 
the orders of Major-General Lee. In a few days the Ameri- 


cans, including the militia of the town and country, amounted 
to five or six thousand men. The first South Carolina regular 
regiment, commanded by Colonel Gadsden, was stationed at 
Fort Johnson. This is situated about three miles from 
Charlestown, on the most northerly point of James' Island, 
and is within point blank shot of the channel. The second and 
third regular regiments of South Carolina, commanded by Col- 
onels Moultrie and Thomson, occupied the two extremities of 
Sullivan's Island. The other forces had their posts assigned 
them at Haddrell's point, James' Island, and along the Bay 
in front of the town. The streets near the water were, in 
different places, strongly barricaded. The stores on the wharves 
were pulled down, and lines of defence were continued along 
the water's edge. Domestic conveniences were exchanged 
for blankets and knapsacks, and hoes and spades were in the 
hands of every citizen. In a few days, by their labor, in con- 
junction with a number of negroes, such obstructions were 
thrown in the way as would have greatly embarrassed the 
royal army attempting to land in the town. 

On the 25th, the Experiment, a fifty gun ship, arrived near 
the bar ; and on the 26th, her guns being previously taken out, 
she got safely over. 

On the 2Sth the fort on the Island was briskly attacked by 
the two fifty-gun ships, Bristol and Experiment, four frigates, 
the Active, Acteon, Solebay, Syren, each of twenty-eight guns, 
the Sphynx, of twenty guns, the Friendship, an armed vessel 
of twenty-two guns. Ranger sloop, and Thunder-Bomb, each of 
eight guns. Between ten and eleven o'clock the Thunder-Bomb 
began to throw shells. The Active, Bristol, Experiment, and 
Solebay, came boldly on to the attack. A little before eleven 
o'clock the garrison fired four or five shot at the Active while 
under sail. When she came near the fort she dropped anchor, 
and poured in a broad-side. Her example was followed by the 
three other vessels, and a most tremendous cannonade ensued 
The Thunder-Bomb, after having thrown about sixty shells, 
was so damaged as to be incapacitated from firing. Colonel 
Moultrie, with three hundred and forty-four regulars, and a 
few volunteer militia, made a defence that would have done 
honor to experienced veterans. During the engagement the 
inhabitants stood with arms in their hands at their respective 
posts, prepared to receive the British wherever they might 
land. Impressed with high ideas of British bravery, and diffi- 
dent of the maiden courage of their own new troops, they 
were apprehensive that the forts would either be silenced or 
passed, and that they should be called to immediate action. 
Thevarious passions of the mind assumed alternate sway, 
and marked their countenances with anxious fears or cheerful 


hopes. Their resolution was fixed to meet the invaders at 
the water's edge, and dispute every inch of ground, trusting 
the event to Heaven and preferring death to slavery. 

General Clinton was to have passed over to Sullivan's Island 
with the troops under his command on Long Island; but the 
extreme danger to which he must unavoidably have exposed 
his men, induced him to decline the perilous attempt. Colonel 
Thompson, with seven hundred men, an eighteen pounder, 
and a field piece, were stationed at the east end of Sullivan's 
Island to oppose their crossing; but no serious attempt to land 
on Sullivan's was made, either from the fleet or by the de- 
tachment on Long Island. The Sphynx, Acteon, and Syren, 
were sent round to attack the western extremity of the fort. 
This was so unfinished as to afford very imperfect cover to 
the men at the guns in that part, and also so situated as to ex- 
pose the men in the other parts of the fort to a very dangerous 
cross-fire. Providence, on this occasion, remarkably interposed 
in behalf of the garrison and saved them from a fate, which, in 
all probability, would otherwise have been inevitable. About 
twelve o'clock, as the three last mentioned ships were advanc- 
ing to attack the western wing of the fort, they all got en- 
tangled with a shoal called the Middle Ground; two of them 
ran foul of each other. The Acteon stuck fast. The Sphynx, 
before she cleared herself, lost her bowsprit; but the Syren 
got off without much injury. The ships in front of the fort 
kept up their fire till near seven o'clock in the evening with- 
out intermission ; after that time it slackened. At half-past 
nine the firing on both sides ceased ; and at eleven the ships 
slipped their cables. Next morning all the men-of-war, ex- 
cept the Acteon, had retired about two miles from the Island. 
The garrison fired several shot at the Acteon ; she at first re- 
turned them, but soon after the crew set her on fire and 
abandoned her; leaving her colors flying, guns loaded, and all 
her ammunition and stores. She was in a short time boarded 
by a party of Americans, commanded by Captain Jacob 
Milligan. While flames were bursting out on all sides they 
fired three of her guns at the commodore, and then quitted 
her. In less than half an hour after their departure she blew 
up.* The Bristol had forty men killed and seventy-one 
wounded. Every man, who was stationed in the beginning 
of the action on her quarter deck, was either killed or wounded. 
The Experiment had twenty-three killed and seventy-six 
wounded. Lord William Campbell, the late Governor of the 

*Her guns were afterwards raised and planted on the lines of Charlestown for 
purposes of defence ■ but on being fired they burst. This was supposed to be the 
consequence of a change their metal had undergone from their falling into the 
cold water of the harbor, when they were heated by previous discharges. 


province, who, as a volunteer, had exposed himself in a post 
of danger, received a wound which ultimately proved mortal. 
The fire of the fort was principally directed against the Bristol 
and Experiment; and they suffered very much in their hulls, 
masts, and rigging. Not less than seventy balls went through 
the former. The Acteon had Lieutenant Pike killed, and six 
men wounded. The Solebay had eight men wounded. After 
some days the troops were all re-embarked, and the whole 
sailed for New York. 

The loss of the garrison was ten men killed and twenty-two 
wounded. Lieutenants Hall and Gray were among the latter. 
Though (here were many thousand shot fired from the ship- 
ping, yet the works were little damaged : those which struck 
the fort were ineffectually btiried in its soft wood. Hardly a 
hut or tree on the Island escaped. 

When the British appeared off the coast there was so scanty 
a stock of lead, that to supply the musketry with bullets, it 
became necessary to strip the windows of the dwelling houses 
in Charlestown of their weights. Powder was also very 
scarce. The proportion allotted for the defence of the fort 
was but barely sufficient for slow firing. This was expended 
with great deliberation. The officers in their turn pointed the 
guns with such exactness that most of their shot took effect.* 
In the beginning of the action the flag-staff was shot away. 
Sergeant Jasper of the grenadiers immediately jumped on the 
beach, took up the flag and fastened it on a sponge-staff. 
With it in his hand he mounted the merlon ; and, though 
the ships were directing their incessant broad-sides at the 
spot, he deliberately fixed it. The day after the action Presi- 
dent Rultedge presented him with a sword, as a mark of re- 
spect for his distinguished valor. Sergeant M' Donald, of Cap- 
tain Huger's company, was mortally wounded by a cannon 
ball. He employed the short interval between his wound 
and his death, in exhorting his comrades to continue steady 
in the cause of liberty and their country. 

This ill-conducted expedition contributed greatly to estab- 

« On the third day after the action, the lady of Colonel Bernard Elliott presented 
an elegant pair of colors to the second regiment which had so bravely defended 
fort Moultrie. Her address on the occasion concluded thus; "I make not the 
least doubt, under Heaven's protection, you will stand by these colors as long as 
they waive in the air of liberty." In reply a promise was made, "that they should 
be honorably supported, and never should be tarnished by the second regiment." 
This engagement was literally fulfilled. Three years alter they were planted on 
the Britisli lines at Savannah. One by Lieutenant Bush who was immediately 
shot down. Lieutenant Hume in the act of planting his, was also shot down; 
and Lieutenant Gray in supporting them received a mortal wound. The brave 
Serjeant Jasper on seeing Lieutenant Hume fall, took up the color and planted it. 
In doing so he received a wound which terminated in death; but on the retreat 
being ordered he brought the colors oif with him. These were taken at the fall of 
Charlestown, and are said to be now in the tower of London. 


lish the popular government which it was intended to overset. 
The friends of America triumphed. Unacquainted with the 
vicissitudes of war, some of them began to flatter themselves 
their work was done and their liberties established. In op- 
position to the bold assertions of some, and the desponding 
fears of others, experience proved that American might effect- 
ually resist a British fleet and army. The difiident grew bold 
in their country's cause, and looked forward to the completion 
of their wishes for its liberty and independence. The advo- 
cates for the omnipotence of the British navy confessed their 
mistake. Those who, from interested motives, had abetted 
the royal government, ashamed of their opposition to the 
struggles of an infant people for their dearest rights, retired 
into obscurity. Mr. Cunningham, and other leaders of the 
royalists, who, on the defeat and dispersion of their party in 
the latter end of 1775, had been taken and committed to close 
confinement, obtained their discharge soon after the departure 
of the British fleet. The State wished to conciliate them to 
the popular measures, and therefore in this moment of triumph 
received from them assurances of fidelity to their country, and 
restored them to the rights and privileges of free citizens. 

Soon after the engagement, when the British troops were 
re-embarked for their departure, the transport ship Glasgow, 
mounting six four-pounders, with fifty-six high landers on 
board, ran aground near Long Island. Captain Pickering, 
Benjamin Waller, Cornelius Dewees, William Dewees, and 
twenty-one seamen, all volunteers, came alongside of her in 
a wood-boat, on which were mounted one eighteen-pounder 
and some smaller guns, and took the whole crew of the Glas- 
gow prisoners. After stripping her of everything that could 
be brought off, they set her on fire. This successful defence 
gave to South Carolina a respite of three years from the calam- 
ities of war. In that season of leisure two expeditions were 
projected against Florida, but they both proved abortive. The 
energies of the State were applied with more success against 
the Cherokee Indian nation, which inhabit lands not far dis- 
tant from the western settlements of Carolina. On the first 
appearance of a rupture between Great Britain and her colo- 
nies, the attention of both parties were engaged to secure the 
friendship of Indians. Many circumstances had concurred 
to give them unfavorable impressions of the Americans. For 
several years the management of them had been exclusively 
committed to John Stuart, an ofiicer of the crown, and wholly 
devoted to the royal interest. Being in the immediate seiwice 
of his Britannic majesty, he conceived himself under obliga- 
tions to exert his influence to attach the Indians to the royal 
interest. The state of public affairs in the colonies furnished 


him with many plausible arguments subservient to this de- 
sign. The non-importation agreement adopted by the Amer- 
icans, not only disabled them from supplying the wants of the 
Indians, but precluded the possibility of their receiving royal 
presents. This interruption of the commerce usual between 
the white inhabitants and their savage neighbors, gave Mr. 
Stuart an opportunity of exasperating the Indians against the 
friends of Congress. 

In the years 1760 and 1761, a war with the Cherokee In- 
dians had involved the inhabitants of South Carolina in such 
distress that they courted the aid of the King's troops in Amer- 
ica. In fifteen years after, when the people of the same coun- 
try dared to resist the parent state, it was supposed by the 
friends of royal government that the horrors of an Indian war 
would once more bring the province to sue for British protec- 

The above mentioned Mr. John Stuart, very early in the 
contest, retired from South Carolina to West Florida; and 
from that province employed his brother Henry Stuart, Mr. 
Cameron, and others, to penetrate into the Indian countiy to 
the westward of Carolina. A plan was settled by him, in con- 
cert with the King's Governors, and other royal servants, to 
land a British array in Florida, and to proceed with it to the 
western frontiers of the Southern States, and there, in con- 
junction with the tories and Indians, to fall on the friends 
of the revolution, at the same time that a fleet and army 
should invade them on the sea-coast. Moses Kirkland, a 
leader of the party for royal government in the back parts of 
South Carolina, was confidentially employed by John Stuart, 
Governor Tonyn, and other royal servants to the southward, 
to concert with General Gage, the commander of the British 
forces in Boston, the necessary means for accomplishing 
the above mentioned scheme. The whole plan was fully 
detected by the providential capture of the vessel which was 
conveying Kirkland to Boston. The letters found in his pos- 
session were published by the order of Congress, and produced 
conviction in the minds of the Americans, that the British 
administration, in order to elfect their schemes, had employed 
savages, who indiscriminately murder men, women and chil- 
dren, to commence hostilities on their western brethren. 
Though the discovery of the British designs, and the capture 
of Kirkland, who was to have had an active share in the exe- 
cution of them, in a great degree frustrated th6 views of the 
royal servants, yet so much was carried into effect, that the 
Cherokee Indians began their massacres two days after the 
British fleet attacked the fort on Sullivan's Island. 

The Americans very early paid attention to their savage 


neighbors. They appointed commissioners to explain to 
them the grounds of the dispute between Great Britain and 
her colonies, and to cultivate with them a friendly corres- 
pondence. As far as they possibly could, they supplied their 
wants. They endeavored to persuade the Indians that the 
quarrel was by no means relative to them, and that therefore 
they should take part with neither side. These moderate 
propositions were overruled by the superior influence of the 
royal superintendent, who had their previous confidence and 
more ample means of administering to their necessities. An 
Indian war commenced, and was carried on with its usual 
barbarity. Their massacres caused a general alarm. It was 
known that the Indians were excited by royal agents, and 
aided by some of the tories. The inhabitants were for the 
most part destitute of arms, and government could afford 
them no supply. For present safety they betook themselves 
to stockade forts. Colonel Williamson was charged with the 
defence of the coimtry, but so general was the panic, that in 
sixteen days he could not collect 500 men. An engagement 
took place on the 15th of July, between a party of Indians and 
tories, and a party of militia commanded by Major Downs. 
The former were defeated and fled. They were pursued, and 
thirteen of their number being taken, were found to be white 
men painted like Indians. Intelligence of the repulse of the 
British at Sullivan's Island on the 28th of June, arrived in the 
back country at this critical time, and produced very happy 
effects. The tories were intimidated, and the inhabitants 
turned out with so much alacrity that Williamson soon 
found himself at the head of 1,150 men. With 330 horse- 
men he advanced to attack a party of tories and Indians, 
which was encamped at Occnore creek. On his way he was 
attacked both in fpont and flank by savages who had formed 
an ambuscade, and from it kept up a constant fire. William- 
son's horse was shot under him; Mr. Salvador fell by his side, 
and his whole party was thrown into disorder. Colonel Ham- 
mond rallied about twenty men, and, directing them to reserve 
their fire, marched rapidly with them to the fence behind which 
the Indians were covered, fired upon thenj, and immediately 
jumped over and charged. The Indians fled from the approach- 
ing bayonet. Williamson burned the Indian town on the 
east side of Keowee river, but his men could not be induced 
to pass the river till Colonel Hammond crossed before them. 
They then followed, and without delay destroyed all the 
houses and provisions they could find. Williamson returned 
to his main body and advanced with them to Eighteen Mile 
creek, where he encamped on the 2d of August. As lie ad- 
vanced, he sent off detachments to lay waste the Indian set- 


tlements, who, bj'^ the fifteenth, had completed the destruction 
of all their lower towns. On the 13th of September, William- 
son, with an army of two thousand men, partly regulars and 
partly militia, marched into the country of the Cherokees, 
whose warriors were said to be equally numerous. The in- 
vaders again fell into an ambuscade. They entered a narrow 
valley enclosed on each side by mountains. Twelve hundred 
Indians occupied these heights, and from them poured in a 
constant and well directed fire. Detachments were ordered 
to file off and gain the eminences above the Indians, and to 
turn their flanks. Others, whose guns were loaded, received 
orders from Lieutenant Hampton to advance, and after dis- 
charging to fall down and load. The Indians being hard 
pressed, betook themselves to flight. The army proceeded 
without further interruption, and on the 23d of September 
arrived in the vallies. Penetrating through them, they de- 
stroyed whatever came in their way. All the Cherokee set- 
tlements to the eastward of the Apalachian mountains, were 
so rapidly laid waste, that the business of destruction was 
completed, and Williamson's army disbanded early in Octo- 
ber. Above five hundred of the Cherokees were obliged, by 
their distress for want of provisions, to take refuge with John 
Stuart, in West Florida, where they were fed at the expense 
of the British government. The Indian settlements to the 
northward were at the same time invaded by a party of Vir- 
ginia militia, commanded by Colonel Christie, and nineteen 
hundred North Carolina militia, commanded by General Ruth- 
erford ; and to the southward by the Georgia militia, com- 
manded by Colonel Jack. Dismal was the wilderness through 
which the Americans had to pass. Their route was over 
pathless mountains, whose ascents were so steep that they 
could not be scaled without serious danger. At other times 
they had to march through thickets so impenetrable that the 
rays of the sun scarcely ever reached the surface of the earth. 
They were incessantly occupied for five days in advancing 
twenty-five miles. Notwithstanding all these fatigues, not 
one died of disease, and only one was so sick as to be unable 
to march. 

The unfortunate misled Indians, finding themselves attacked 
on all sides, sued in the most submissive terms for peace. 
They had not the wisdom to shun war, nor the cunning to 
make a proper choice of the party with whom they made a 
common cause. About fifteen years before, by taking part 
with the French, they had brought on themselves a severe 
chastisement from the British and Americans. At this time, 
in consequence of joining the British and the tories, their 
country was laid waste, and their provisions so far destroyed 


as to be insufficient for their support. And they were com- 
pelled, as a conquered people,' to cede to South Carolina all 
their lands to the eastward of the Unacaye mountains, which 
now form the populous and flourishing districts of Pendleton 
and Greenville. These former lords of the soil have ever since 
been cooped up in a nook in the southwest angle of South 
Carolina, though the best part of that State was, about sixty 
years ago, their exclusive property. To preserve peace and 
good order, a fort called fort Rutledge was erected at Seneca, 
and garrisoned by two independent companies. A friendly 
intercourse between the savages and white inhabitants took 
place, and everything remained quiet till the year 1780. 

None of all the expeditions before undertaken against the 
savages had been so successful as this first effort to the new- 
born commonwealth. In less than three months the business 
was completed, and the nation of the Cherokees so far subdued 
as to be incapable of annoying the settlements. The loss of 
the Americans in the expedition was thirty-three killed, and 
seventy-two wounded. The Cherokees lost about two hun- 
dred men. 

From the double success of this campaign, in repelling the 
British and conquering the savages, the people of South Caro- 
lina began to be more and more convinced that the leading 
strings of the mother country were less necessary than in the days 
of their infancy. Through the whole of this year, though the 
arms of the British were successful to the northward, their in- 
terest to the southward declined. Every plan, for their acting 
in concert with the tories and Indians, proved abortive. Hard 
would it have been for the whigs of South Carolina to have 
opposed so formidable a combination could the friends of Bri- 
tain have succeeded in their scheme of acting at one and the 
same time : but, through the kindness of heaven, the favorers 
of the revolution had the opportunity of attacking them sepa- 
rately, and of successively pouring their whole force, and also 
that of a considerable aid from their neighbors, on the tories, 
the British, and the Indians. The first, from their premature 
insurrection, were crushed before their British friends arrived. 
The last were abandoned to the resentment of the State, by the 
royal fleet and army precipitately leaving the coast, and under 
the smiles of heaven, all three were vanquished by the infant 
American republics. The means adopted by the British to 
crush the friends of the Congress were providentially overruled, 
so as to produce the contrary efi'ect. Their exciting Indians 
to massacre the defenceless frontier settlers increased the unan- 
imity of the inhabitants, and invigorated their opposition to 
Great Britain. Several who called themselves tories in 1775 
became active whigs in ] 776, and cheerfully took up arms in 


the first instance against Indians, and in the second against 
Great Britain, as the instigator of their barbarous devastations. 
Before this event some well-meaning people could not see the 
justice or propriety of contending with their formerly protect- 
ing parent State ; but Indian cruelties, excited by royal artifices, 
soon extinguished all their predilection for the country of their 

The expedition into the Cherokee settlements diffused mili- 
tary ideas, and a spirit of enterprise among the inhabitants. 
It taught them the necessary arts of providing for an army, 
and gave them experience in the business of war. The new 
arrangements, civil and military, were followed with that 
energy and vigor which is acquired by an individual ora col- 
lective body of people acting from the impulse of their own 
minds. The peaceable inhabitants of a whole State were in 
a short time transformed from planters, merchants, and me- 
chanics, into an active militia, and a well regulated self- 
governed community. 


Of Independence and the Mliance with Francp. 

Notwithstanding the nominal existence -of royal authority 
in South Carolina, an independent government had a virtual 
operation from the 6th of July 1774. This was at first by 
conventions, committees, and congresses, whose resolutions 
had the fullest force of law on a people who thought that 
their liberties were endangered, and that their only safetycon- 
sisted in union. It was afterwards reduced into a more regular 
form in March 1776 ; but all these institutions were temporary, 
and looked forward to an accommodation with Great Britain. 
The act of final separation from the mother country could not 
be the work of any one State. Everything of that magnitude 
was referred to the Continental Congress, to whose general 
superintendence the individual colonies had voluntarily sub- 
mitted. That august assembly, at their first meeting in 1774, 
petitioned the King, and addressed the people of Great Bri- 
tain for a redress of their grievances. In the year 1775 they 
renewed their supplications to their sovereign, in which they 
prayed that his majesty would be pleased " to direct some 
mode by which the united application of his faithful colonists 
to the throne, in pursuance of their common councils, might 
be improved into a happy and permanent reconciliation; and 
that in the meantime measures might be taken for preventing 
the further destruction of his majesty's subjects.'' They also 
a second time addressed the people of Great Britain, in which 


they apprised them of their fixed resolution to defend their 
liberties, but at the same time disclaimed every wish of inde- 
pendence, or any thing more than the secure enjoyment of 
their ancient rights and privileges. They asked for peace, 
but the sword was tended — for liberty, but nothing short of 
unconditional submission was offered. Their petitions re- 
ceived no answer. And all the inhabitants of the colonies 
were, by an act of parliament passed December 21, 1775, 
thrown out of the King's protection. This was a legal dis- 
charge from their allegiance to the King of Great Britain, and 
placed the colonies in a state of nature, at full liberty to provide 
for their own safety, by entering into any new social compact 
which they approved. Though the refusal of protection was 
a legal justification of their conduct in withholding allegiance, 
yet independence was untried ground, and could not at once 
gain the plenary approbation of colonies which had long flour- 
ished under royal protection. The minds of the inhabitants 
were overcast with fears, and tossed in a tumult of uncer- 
tainty. Their resolution was fixed never to submit to the 
claims of the British parliament, hut how to extricate them- 
selves from surrounding diflaculties was a question that em- 
barrassed their wisest politicians. While they were in this 
state of feverish anxiety, a pamphlet, under the signature of 
Common Sense, written by Mr. Thomas Paine, made its ap- 
pearance. It proved the necessity, the advantages, and prac- 
ticability of independence. It satisfied a great majority of the 
people that it was their true interest immediately to cut the 
gordian knot which bound the American colonies to Great 
Britain, and to open their commerce as an independent people, 
to all the nations of the world.- Nothing could be better timed 
than this performance. It found the colonists greatly exas- 
perated against the mother country, most thoroughly alarmed 
for their liberties, and disposed to do and suifer everything 
that bid fairest for their establishment. In unison with the 
feehngs and sentiments of the people, it produced astonishing 
effects. It was read by almost every American, and in con- 
junction with the cruel policy of Great Britain, was by the 
direction of Providence, instrumental in eifectingan unexam- 
pled unanimity in favor of independence. The decisive genius 
of Christopher Gadsden in the south, and of John Adams in 
the north, at a much earlier day, might have desired the com- 
plete separation of America from Great Britain — but till the 
year 1776 — the rejection of the second petition of Congress— 
and the appearance of Mr. Paine's pamphlet — a reconciliation 
with the mother country was the unanimous wish of almost 
every other American. 

Before the Congress ventured on the important step of 


changing the sovereignty of the colonies, they sent forth a reso- 
lution on the 15th of May, 1776, recommending to all of them 
to institute forms of government. This was intended to ascer- 
tain the sense of the inhabitants on the important question of 
independence. In adopting this measure, Congress, instead 
of leading, only followed the voice of the people. South 
Carolina had for near two months been in possession of a 
regular government. Independence was finally decided on in 
Congress, and declared in Philadelphia, on the 4th of July, 
1776. In this declaration, South Carolina most heartily con- 
curred, and the same was subscribed on her part by her repre- 
sentatives, Edward Rutledge, Thomas Heyward, Thomas 
Lynch, Arthur Middleton. 

From this moment everything assumed a new appearance. 
The Americans no longer appeared in the character of sub- 
jects in arms against their sovereign, but as an independent 
people, repelling the attacks of an invading foe. The propo- 
sitions and supplications for reconciliation were done away. 
The dispute was brought to a single point, whether the late 
British colonies should be conquered, enslaved provinces, or 
free and independent States. This decisive measure was 
adopted without assurances of aid from any foreign power, 
and in the face of a British force of fifty thousand men. In 
a few days it was received in Charlestown, and proclaimed in 
the most solemn manner to the troops under arms. This 
was followed with the firing of guns, ringing of bells, accla- 
mations of the people, and ail the usual parade of a public re- 
joicing. The Declaration of Independence arrived in Charles- 
town at a most favorable juncture. It found the people of 
South Carolina exasperated against Great Britain for her late 
hostile attack, and elevated with their successful defence of 
Fort Moultrie. It was welcomed by a great majority of the 
inhabitants. In private it is probable that some condemned 
the measure, as rashly adventurous beyond the ability of the 
State; but these private murmurs never produced to the public 
ear a single expression of disapprobation. 

After the termination of the unsuccessful attack on the fort 
on Sullivan's Island in June, 1776, the British arms were for 
more than two years wholly employed to the northward. 
During this period. South Carolina felt very few of the incon- 
veniences which were then grinding their brethren to the 
northward. They were in possession of a lucrative commerce, 
and comparatively happy. In the year 1777 and 1778 Charles- 
town was the mart for supplying with goods most of the States 
to the southward of New Jersey. Many hundred wagons 
were employed in this inland traffic. At no period of peace 
were fortunes more easily or more rapidly acquired. 


While Congress vigorously opposed Great Britain from their 
own resources, they did not neglect the important business of 
negotiation. The friendship of foreign powers, particularly 
of the ancient and powerful monarchy of France, was, from 
the Declaration of Independence, earnestly desired by the 
new-formed States of America. On the 'eth of February, 
177S, his most christian majesty, Louis the Sixteenth, entered 
into treaties of amity and commerce, and of alliance with 
the American commissioners at Paris, oq the footing of the 
most perfect equality and reciprocity. Such a powerful ally, 
added to the natural force of America, alarmed the fears of 
Great Britain, and induced her to make an eifort in the way 
of negotiation to recover her late colonies. Governor John- 
stone, Lord Carlisle, and Mr. Eden, were appointed commis- 
sioners on the part of Great Britain, to come to America and 
to offer Congress a relinquishment of the parliamentary exer- 
cise of taxation, and to confirm them in every immunity con- 
sistent with an union of force. So expeditious was the court 
of Great Britain in proposing these overtures, that the bills 
containing them were read in Congress eleven days before any 
information was received by that body of their alliance with 
France. A firm determination, under no change of fortune 
whatever to recede from their Declaration of Independence, 
prompted Congress in the first instance to reject the proposals 
of a RE-UNION with Great Britain. After their connection with 
France was known, gratitude and national faith were addi- 
tional incentives to continue in the same line of conduct. 

When the alliance with France was announced in South 
Carolina, it diffused a general joy. It not only gave confi- 
dence to all in the final establishment of their independence, 
but reconciled them to the calamities of war. They viewed 
their misfortunes only as temporary, and looked forward to a 
speedy peace, when all their wishes in favor of their country 
would be realized. The conduct of Congress, in instantly re- 
jecting the offers of the commissioners, was 'in all companies 
applauded. The second petition of Congress had not asked 
so much as was then offered. At that period the propositions 
of Great Britain would have been gladly accepted, but to that 
petition the King of Great Britain refused an answer. After 
the colonies had declared themselves independent States — had 
pledged their honor to abide by that declaration — had, under 
the smiles of heaven, maintained it for three campaigns with- 
out foreign aid — after the greatest monarch in Europe had 
entered into a treaty with them, and guaranteed their inde- 
pendence — after all this to degrade themselves from the rank 
of freemen to that of subjects — from sovereign States to depen- 
dent provinces — were propositions no where less relished than 


hy the citizens of South Carolina. The tide was fairly turned. 
Instead of that hankering after Great Britain which had made 
a separation painful, the current of popular opinions and 
prejudices ran strong in an opposite direction. 

On a review of the transactions between Great Britain and 
America from the year 1774 to the year 1778, an attentive 
observer cannot but remark four different periods, in each of 
which the contest between the two countries assumed a new- 
complexion. The parliamentary claims of unlimited supre- 
macy — the Boston port act — the abolition of the charter of 
Massachusetts, and the other acts of the like tendency, passed 
about the same time, roused the colonies in 1774 to the appoint- 
ment of a Congress, and to a declaration of their exclusive right 
to tax themselves, and regulate their own internal polity. To 
obtain a repeal of thirteen acts of parliament, which infringed 
upon theseclaims, they petitioned the Kingof Great Britain, and 
associated to suspend all trade till this repeal shouldbe obtained. 
The success that had followed two former attempts of this kind, 
flattered them that their present wishes would soon be fully 
gratified. They therefore very gen erally came into the measure, 
without foreseeing all the consequences, and without intend- 
ing anything further than such a commercial opposition as 
would interest the West Indians and British merchants in 
their behalf. The refusal of this first petition, and the sub- 
sequent commencement of hostilities on the part of Great 
Britain, produced in the colonists a determination to oppose 
force to force. A military opposition was therefore adopted 
about the middle of the year 1775, but without a design of 
effecting a separation from Great Britain. At this second 
stage of the quarrel, the Congress prepared a second petition, 
praying for the repeal of the obnoxious acts. To give weight 
to this renewed application to the throne, and to rouse the 
people of England to a sense of the probable consequences 
of their persisting in the war, they formed a temporary army, 
and published to' the world their resolution of defending their 
liberties at every hazard. Still nothing further was intended 
than a redress of grievances. The rejection of this second 
petition — the determination to wage war in full form against 
the colonists — and the act of parliament putting the whole of 
them out of the King's protection, gave birth to a third and 
unforeseen measure — the Declaration of Independence. With- 
out this they must either have submitted with their grievances 
unredressed, or carried on a war under the appellation of sub- 
jects in arms against their acknowledged sovereign, in which 
case no foreign power could have openly assisted them. Af- 
ter this measure was adopted, a federal union might have 
taken place between Great Britain and America. Instead of 

CAMPAIGN OF 1779. 167 

proposing anything of this kind, Great Britain carried on the 
war for the campaigns of 1776 and 1777, professedly with a 
view to reduce tlrem to unconditional submission, and offered 
nothing to the United States before April 1778, which they 
could with safety accept After a treaty had been concluded 
between France and America, Great Britain sent out commis- 
sioners to offer Congress more than a repeal of the acts which 
were at first the source of the dispute. By this conduct she 
virtually acknowledged she had been hitherto in the wrong, 
and also gave the United States an opportunity of evincing 
to their new ally the sincerity of their engagements. 

From this time forward commenced the fourth period of 
the contest. The colonies were not only lost to Great Britain, 
but their whole weight was thrown into the opposite scale of 

Though the continental Congress, in conducting the oppo- 
sition to the mother country, did little more than give an efh- 
cient operation to the wishes of their constituent, yet the 
British commissioners flattered themselves that an application 
to the local Legislatures and the people at large, would be 
more successful. They therefore next addressed themselves 
to the individual States, and denounced the extremities of war 
on those who continued to prefer the alliance with France to 
a re-union with Great Britain. This did not produce the in- 
timidation expected from it, nor were their proposals more 
favorably received by the local Legislatures, or the people, 
than they had been by the Continental Congress. When the 
flag arrived with their overtures separately addressed to the 
Governor, the Assembly, the mihtary, the clergy, and the peo- 
ple of South Carolina, it was detained in the road near the 
harbor of Charlestown, till President Lowndes convened his 
council, and the heads or leading men of the different orders 
of the inhabitants, to whom they were addressed. As soon 
as the letters of the British commissioners were read to the 
gentlemen convened on this occasion, an unanimous resolu- 
tion was adopted to order the flag-vessels immediately to de- 
part the' State. This was accompanied with a reprimand for 
attempting to violate the constitution of the country, by offer- 
ing to negotiate with the State in its separate capacity. 


Campaign of 1779. 

Soon after the Brhish commissioners were convinced of the 
inefRcacy of negotiation to effect a re-union of the colonies 
with Great Britain, the war recommenced, but entirely on a 
new system. Hitherto the conquest of America had been at- 


tempted by proceeding from north to south ; but that order 
was from this period inverted. The northern States in their 
turn obtained a diminution of their calamities, while South 
Carolina and the adjacent settlements, became the principal 
theatre of offensive operations. 

The reduction in Savannah in December, 1778, by Colonel 
Campbell, and the rapid extension of British conquests over 
Georgia, were among the first consequences of this new plan 
of warfare. South Carolina was thereby made a frontier; 
the proximity of the enemy called for redoubled exertions to 
be prepared for every event. 

At the request of the delegates from South Carolina, Con- 
gress appointed Major General Lincoln to take the command 
of all their forces to the southward. This officer was second 
in command in the campaign of 1777, when General Burgoyne 
and his army surrendered to General Gates. He brought to 
the southward great reputation, and there, though under many 
disadvantages, acquired the further honor of checking the 
British conquests, and preserving the State for upwards of 
fifteen months against a superior enemy. His plans were 
well formed; but his little army, mostly consisting of militia, 
was not able to contend with superior numbers and the dis- 
cipline of British regular troops. The continentals under his 
command did not exceed six hundred men, and all the rest 
of his force was made up of draughts from the inhabitants of 
the country, changed every second or third month. 

Upon advice received of the intentions of the British toin- 
vade the southern States, President Lowndes, in order to keep 
as great a force as possible in the country, laid on a general 
embargo, and prohibited the sailing of vessels from any port 
of the State. He also ordered "the proprietors of neat cattle, 
sheep and hogs, on the sea-islands and other parts imme- 
diately exposed to the incursions of the enemy, to remove 
them off the said islands or exposed places, that the British 
might be prevented from obtaining a supply of provisions." 
And also addressed the Legislature in an animated speech of 
which the following is a part. " Our inveterate and obdurate 
enemy being foiled in the northern States, and by the valor 
and good conduct of the inhabitants compelled to abandon 
their hopes of conquest there, have turned their arms more 
immediately against these southern States, in hopes of better 
success. They are now in possession of Savannah, the capital 
of Georgia, from whence, if not prevented, an easy transition 
may be made into this country. This situation of danger, 
gentlemen, calls for your most serious consideration. Our 
whole force and strength should be exerted to stop the pro- 
gress of the enemy." These spirited sentiments were re-echoed 


CAMPAIGN OF 1779. 169 

by the House of Representatives in an address, of which the 
following is a part. "That our cruel and ambitious enemies 
should turn their arms against these southern States is a cir- 
cumstance not unexpected. But this last nefarious struggle 
of our desponding foes will, we trust, under the assistance of 
Divine Providence, in the end tend more to show their impo- 
tent malice, than the wisdom of their counsels or the valor of 
their arms ; for that same spirit which once animated our 
countrymen to drive them disgraced from our coasts, will 
again be exerted to efiect the like happy consequences. We 
conceive ourselves bound by all the difference there is between 
the horrors of slavery and the blessings of liberty, to use every 
means in our power to expel them from our country." 

General Lincoln established his first post at Purysburgh, a 
small village on the northern banks of the river Savannah. A 
large proportion of the militia of the State of South Carolina 
was draughted, put under the command of Colonel Richardson, 
and marched for the American head quarters. Their numbers 
Avere considerable, but they had not yet learned the implicit 
obedience necessary for military operations. Accustomed to 
activity on their farms, they could not bear the languors of an 
encampment. Having grown up in habits of freedom and 
independence on their freeholds, they reluctantly submitted to 
martial discipline. 

The royal army at Savannah, being reinforced by troops 
from St. Augustine, its commanders formed a scheme of ex- 
tending a part of their forces into South Carolina. Major 
Gardiner, with two hundred men, was detached to take pos- 
session of Port Royal Island. Soon after he landed General 
Moultrie, at the head of an equal number of men in which 
there were only nine regular soldiers, attacked and drove him 
off the Island. This advantage was principally gained by 
two field pieces which were well served by a party of the 
Charlestown militia artillery, under the command of the Cap- 
tains Heyward and Rutledge. The British lost almost all 
their officers, and several prisoners were taken by a small 
party of Port Royal militia commanded by Captain Barnwell. 
The Americans had eight men killed, and twenty-two wounded. 
Among the former. Lieutenant Benjamin Wilkins was the 
theme of universal lamentation. His country regretted the 
fall of a worthy man, and an excellent officer. A numerous 
young family sustained a loss which to them was irreparable. 

This success of the Americans checked the British, and for 
the present prevented their attempting any enterprise against 
South Carolina; but they extended themselves over a great 
part of Georgia. Their next object were to strengthen them- 
selves, by the addition of thetories. Emissaries were employed 


to encourage them to a general insurrection. Several hun- 
dreds of them accordingly embodied and marched along the 
western frontiers of the State. Colonel Pickins, with about 
three hundred men, immediately followed and came up with 
them near Kettle creek ; where an action took place which 
lasted three quarters of an hour. The tories gave way, and 
were totally routed. Colonel Pickins had nine men killed, 
and several wounded. The royalists had about forty killed ; 
in which number was their leader Colonel Boyd, who had 
been secretly employed by British authority to collect and 
head these insurgents. By this action the British were totally 
disconcerted. The tories were dispersed all over the country. 
Some ran to North Carolina, some wandered not knowing 
whither. Many went to their homes, and cast themselves on 
the mercy of the new government. Soon after this defeat, the 
British retreated from Augusta towards Savannah ; and for 
the remainder of that season the whole upper country, of both 
South Carolina and Georgia, enjoyed domestic security. 

The insurgents on this occasion were the subjects of the 
State of South Carolina, and owed obedience to its laws. 
They were therefore tried in a regular manner, by a jury, 
under the direction of the Courts of Justice appointed by the 
republican government. Seventy of them were condemned 
to die by the laws of the State, enacted since the abolition of 
royal government ; but the sentence of the court was executed 
only on five of their principals, and all the rest were pardoned, 

This second unsuccessful insurrection damped the spirit of 
the tories. Their plans were ill laid, and worse executed. 
They had no men of ability capable of giving union to their 
force. They were disappointed in their expectations of aid 
from the royal army, and had the mortification to see a few 
of their ringleaders executed for treason and rebellion against 
the State. 

As the British extended their posts up the river Savannah 
on the south side. General Lincoln fixed encampments at 
Black Swamp and opposite to Augusta. From these posts 
he crossed the river at Augusta and at Zubly's ferry in two 
divisions, with the view of limiting the British to the sea 
coast of Georgia. In the execution of this design General Ash, 
with fifteen hundred North Carolina militia, and a few Georgia 
continentals, crossed the Savannah river on the 28th of Feb- 
ruary 1779; and immediately marched down the country as 
far as Briar creek. At this place, on the fourth day after his 
crossing, he was surprised at three o'clock in the afternoon 
by Lieutenant-Colonel Prevost. This detachment of the royal 
army, having crossed Briar creek fifteen miles above General 
Ash's encampment, came unexpectedly on his rear. The 

CAMPAIGN OF 1779. 171 

American militia, completely surprised, were thrown into con- 
fusion and fled at the first fire, Several were killed, and a 
considerable number taken. None had any chance of escap- 
ing but by crossing the river, in attempting which many were 
drowned; of those who got over safe, a great part returned 
home. The few continentals, about 60 under Colonel Elbert, 
fought with the greatest bravery; but the survivors of them, 
with their gallant leader, were at last compelled to surrender. 
The whole that remained and rejoined the American camp, 
did not exceed four hundred and fifty men. This event de- 
prived General Lincoln of one-fourth of his numbers, and 
opened a communication between the British, the Indians, 
and the tories of South and North Carolina. 

Unexperienced in the art of war, the Americans were fre- 
quently subject to those reverses of fortune which usually 
attend young soldiers. Unacquainted with military strata- 
gems, deficient in discipline, and not thoroughly broken to 
habits of implicit obedience, they were often surprised ; and 
had to learn, by repeated misfortunes, the necessity of subordi- 
nation and the advantages of discipline. Their numbers in 
the field, to those who are acquainted with European wars, 
must appear inconsiderable ; but such is the difference of the 
state of society, and of the population in the old and new 
world, that in America a few hundreds decided objects of 
equal magnitude with those which, in European States, would 
have called into the field many thousands. The prize con- 
tended for was nothing less than the sovereignty of three rail- 
lions of people, and five hundred millions of acres of land ; 
and yet, from the remote situation of the invading power and 
the thin population of the invaded States, this momentous 
question was materially affected by the consequences of battles 
in which only a few hundreds engaged. 

The series of disasters which had followed the American 
arms since the landing of the British in Georgia, occasioned 
among the inhabitants of South Carolina many viell founded 
apprehensions for their safety. The Assembly of the State, 
desirous of making a vigorous opposition to the extension of 
the British conquests, passed a very severe militia law. Hith- 
erto the penalties for disobedience of orders were inconsidera- 
ble, but as the defence of the country, in a great measure, 
depended on the exertions of its inhabitants, much heavier fines 
were imposed on those who either neglected to turn out or who 
misbehaved or disobeyed orders. Every effort was made to 
strengthen the continental army. Additional bounties and 
greater emoluments were promised as inducements to encour- 
age the recruiting service. The extent and variety of military 
operations in the open country pointed out the advantages of 


cavalry ; a regiment of dragoons was, therefore, raised and 
put under the command of Colonel Daniel Horry. 

In this time of general alarm, John Rutledge,by the almost 
unanimous voice of his countrymen, was called to the chair 
of government. To him and his council was delegated, by 
the Legislature, power " to do everything that appeared to 
hirh and them necessary for the public good." In execution 
of this trust he assembled a body of militia. This corps, 
kept in constant readiness to march whithersoever public 
service might require, was stationed near the centre of the 
State, at Orangeburg. From this militia camp. Colonel Sim- 
mons was detached with a thousand men, to re-inforce Gen- 
eral Moultrie, at Black Swamp. The original plan of pene- 
trating into Georgia was resumed. Lincoln marched with 
the main army up the Savannah river, that he might give 
confidence to the country, and lead into Georgia a body of 
militia encamped in South Carolina, under the command of 
General Williamson. A small force was left at Black Swamp 
and Purysburgh, for the purpose of defending Carolina, while 
offensive operations were about to be commenced in Georgia. 
General Prevost availed himself of the critical time, when 
the American army was one hundred and fifty miles up the 
Savannah river, and crossed over into Carolina from Abercorn 
to Purysburgh with two thousand men. In addition to this 
number of regular troops, a party of Indians, whose friend- 
ship the British had previously secured, were associated with 
the royal army. Lieutenant-Colonel Macintosh, who com- 
manded a few continentals at Purysburgh, not being able to 
oppose this force, made a timely retreat. It was part of Pre- 
vost's plan to attack Moultrie at Black Swamp, to effect which 
he made a forced march the first night after he landed on the 
Carolina side, but he was three hours too late. Moultrie had 
changed his quarters, and being joined by Macintosh's party, 
took post at Tiilifinny Bridge, to prevent the incursion of the 
British intg the State and to keep between them and its 
capital. General Lincoln, on receiving information of these 
movements, detached Colonel Harris, with two hundred and 
fifty of his best light troops, for Charlestown, but crossed the 
river Savannah, near Angusta, with the main army, and 
marched for three days down the country towards the capital 
of Georgia. He was induced to pursue his original intention 
from an idea that Prevost meant nothing more than to di- 
vert him from his intended operations in Georgia, by a feint 
of attempting the capital of South Carolina, and because his 
marching down on the south side of the river Savannah 
would occasion very little additional delay in repairing to the 
defence of Charlestown. Prevost proceeded in his march by 


CAMPAIGN or 1779. 173 

the main road, near the sea coast, without opposition, as far 
as Coosawhatchie bridge. Lieutenant-ColonelJohn Laurens, 
with eighteen continentals and a much larger number of 
militia, was detached to dispute this difficult pass. That gal- 
lant officer persevered till he was wounded and had lost one- 
half of his continentals. The British fired in security under the 
cover of houses on the opposite bank, and had the advantage 
of a field piece. On this, the first time of their being in 
danger, the American militia could not be persuaded to stand 
their ground. A retreat took place, and was conducted by 
Captain Shubrick, over a long causeway, in the face of a 
superior foe. 

As the British army advanced into the country, they com- 
mitted many outrages and depredations. The day before the 
skirmish just mentioned, they burnt all the buildings on 
Major Butler's plantation, at the Eutaws. The day after, they 
burned the Episcopal Church, in Prince William's Parish, 
and General Bull's house, at Sheldon. 

The position of General Moultrie at Tulifinny was by no 
means a safe one, for the British might easily have crossed 
above him and got in his rear. A general retreat of his 
whole force towards Charlestown was, therefore, thought ad- 
visable. This was conducted with great propriety, though 
under many disadvantages. Moultrie had no cavalry to 
check the advancing foe, and, instead of receiving re-inforce- 
ments from the inhabitants as he marched through the coun- 
try, many of the militia left him and went home. Their 
families and property lay directly in the route of the invading 
army. Several, after providing for their wives and children, 
rejoined Moultrie in Charlestown, but the greater number 
sought security by staying on their plantations. The retreat- 
ing Americans destroyed all the bridges in their rear, but there 
was scarce any other interruption thrown in the way of the 
, British in their march through the country. The absence of 
the main army under Lincoln, the retreat of Moultrie, the 
plundering and devastations of the invaders, and, above all, 
the dread of the royal auxiliaries, the Indian savages, whose 
constant practice is to murder women and children, diffused 
a general panic among the inhabitants, and induced many of 
them to apply to the British for their protection. New con- 
verts to the royal standard endeavored to ingratiate themselves 
with their protectors by representing the capital as an easy 
conquest. This flattering prospect induced General Prevost, 
contrary to his original intention, to pursue his march. Gov- 
ernor Rutledge, with the militia lately encamped at Orange- 
burg, had set out to join Moultrie at Tulifinny bridge, but, on 
the second day of their march, advice was received of Moul- 


trie's retreat, and that Prevost was pushing towards Charles- 
town. This inteUigence determined the Governor to march 
with all the force under his command to the defence of the 

When Prevost crossed the Savannah river, Charlestown 
Neck was almost wholly defenceless. An invasion on the 
land side, by an army marching through the country, was an 
event so unexpected that no proper provision had been made 
against it. The British did not continue their march with 
the same rapidity with which it was begun, but halted two or 
three days when they had advanced more than half the dis- 
tance. In this short interval, Lieutenant-Governor Bee, and the 
gentlemen of the council, made the greatest exertions to fortify 
the town on the land side. All the houses in the suburbs 
were burnt. Lines and an abbatis were, in a few days, carried 
from Ashley to Cooper rivers. Cannon were mounted at 
proper intervals across the whole extent of Charlestown Neck. 
The militia in the vicinity were summoned to the defence of 
Charlestown, and they generally obeyed. Public affairs now 
appeared in a very singular situation. Lincoln was march- 
ing unmolested towards the capital of Georgia, while Prevost 
was advancing with as little interruption towards the capital 
of South Carolina, The hurry and confusion that prevailed 
in the State, and particularly in Charlestown, exceeds all de- 
scription. The whole country seemed to be in motion. In 
the north the militia were pushing for the capital. In the 
south no less than five armies were, at the same time, but for 
very different purposes, marching through the State. General 
Moultrie, with a force originally 1,200, but daily diminishing, 
was retreating before General Prevost, at the head of a British 
army of 2,000 men. General Lincoln, vvith an American 
army of 4,000 men, having re-crossed Savannah river, was 
in the rear of Prevost, pursuing him with hasty strides to 
save Charlestown, while Governor Rutledge, with 600 militia 
men, and Colonel Harris, with a detachment of 250 conti- 
nental troops, were both hastening, the one from Orangeburg 
and the other from the vicinity of Augusta, to get in front of 
Prevost, and either to re-inforce Moultrie or defend the capi- 
tal, as circumstances might require. Moultrie, Rutledge and 
Harris, with their respective commands, all reached Charles- 
town on the 9th and 10th of May, the last having marched 
nearly forty miles a day for four days successively. Their 
arrival, together with that of the militia from the northern 
parts of the State, gave hopes of a successful defence. 

On the 11th, 900 of the British army, their main body and 
baggage being left on the south side of Ashley river, crossed 
the ferry, and in a few hours appeared before the lines. On 

CAMPAIGN OF 1779. 175 

the day that they marched down Charlestown Neck, the in- 
fantry of an American legionary corps crossed Cooper river 
and landed in Charlestown. This was commanded by Brig- 
adier-General Count Pulaski, a Polander of high birth. The 
men under his command had scarcely arrived two hours 
when he led them out, and engaged the British cavalry with 
so much resolution, that the second in command. Colonel 
Kowatch, and most of his infantry, were killed or wounded. 
The survivors with difficulty effected their retreat. Pulaski 
had several successful personal rencontres with individuals of 
the British cavalry, and on all occasions discovered the greatest 
intrepidity. The gallant example»of this distinguished parti- 
zan, courting danger on every occasion, had a considerable 
influence in dispelling the general panic, and in introducing 
military sentiments into the minds of men who had heretofore 
been peaceable citizens. 

The British advanced to Watson's, about a mile from the 
lines. As they were unfurnished for a siege, and had nothing 
to depend on but the chance of a sudden assault, this was 
therefore so confidently expected that the whole garrison con- 
tinued standing to their arms all night. That it might not be 
made by surprise, tar barrels were lighted up in front of the 
works. When it was dark, some fancied they saw the enemy 
near the lines; a false alarm was instantly communicated, 
and a general discharge of cannon, field-pieces and musketry 
took place. By this unfortunate mistake, Major Benjamin 
Huger, a brave officer, an able statesman, and a highly dis- 
tinguished citizen, was killed by his countrymen. He was 
without the lines on duty with a party, twelve of whom were 
either killed or wounded. It was presumed by the garrison 
that Lincoln, with the army under his command, was in close 
pursuit of Prevost, but his present situation was unknown to 
every person within the lines. To gain time in such circum- 
stances was a matter of great consequence. A message was 
sent to the British commander, requesting to be informed on 
what terms he was disposed to grant a capitulation, to which 
he returned an answer offering " peace and protection;" and 
to such as declined acceptance of the same, "that they might 
be received as prisoners of war, and their fate be decided by 
that of the rest of the colonies. On the 12th, General Prevost 
was' informed that his proposal was so dishonorable to the 
garrison, that it could not be agreed to, and an interview 
between officers from both armies was requested, to confer on 
terms. At this interview the officers from the garrison were 
instructed to propose — "A neutrality during the war between 
Great Britain and America; and that the question whether 
the State shall belong to Great Britain, or remain one of the 


United Sates, be determined by the treaty of peace between 
these powers. This proposition being made to Lieutenant- 
Colonel Prevost, acting as a commissioner in behalf of General 
Prevost, he answered "that they did not come in a legislative 
capacity." On a second interview, Lieutenant-Colonel Prevost 
ended the conference by saying, "That as the garrison was in 
arms, they must surrender prisoners of war.'' This being 
refused, preparations were made for sustaining an immediate 
assault. The inhabitants, as well as the regular troops, were 
determined to stand to the lines and defend their country. 
The next morning, the 13th, at daylight, to the great joy of 
the whole garrison, it was resounded along the hues, "the 
enemy is gone.'' It is probable they began their retreat im- 
mediately after the termination of the conference, and were 
restrained from making the threatened assault by intelligence 
derived from an intercepted letter from Lincoln, about fifty 
miles distant, to Moultrie in Charlestown, which was dated 
May 10th, and concluded thus: "Pray stimulate your people 
to every exertion for the defence of the town, until the troops 
here can arrive. Our men are full of spirits. I think they 
will do honor to themselves, and render service to the public. 
Do not give up, nor suffer the people to despair." 

Count Pulaski, with his cavalry, pursued the British, but 
they had crossed Ashley river before he came to it. Expresses 
were sent to General Lincoln to inform him of the retreat of 
the enemy, and a thousand men were ordered to hold them- 
selves in immediate readiness to go out to his aid. To avoid 
being between two fires, the British filed off from the main 
road, by which they came and took post on James Island 
and the other islands on the sea-coast. While they were 
encamped on James Island, their motions were constantly 
watched from the steeple of St. Michael's church, by Peter 
Timothy, and minutely reported to the commanding officer. 
The British collected a number of boats, and seemed to be 
making preparations to invade the town on its water side. 
The inhabitants expecting an attack every night, were kept 
in a constant state of alarm, and the little army was subdi- 
vided into a number of small guards, posted round the town 
to prevent a surprise. 

While the British were encamped on James Island, about 
seventy or eighty of the Americans were posted nearly opposite 
to them, at the plantation of Mr. Matthews on John's Island. 
On the 20th of Maya party of the troops commanded by Gen- 
eral Prevost crossed over the narrow river which separates 
the two islands, surprised the out-sentinel of the Americans, 
and extorted from him the countersign. Possessed of this 
criterion, they advanced in security to the second sentinel 

CAMPAIGN or 1779. 177 

and bayonetted him before he could give any alarm. With- 
out being discovered, they then surrounded the house of 
Mr. Mathews, rushed in on the unprepared Americans, and 
put several of them, though they made no resistance, to the 
bayonet. Among the rest, Mr. Robert Barnwell, a young 
gentleman who adorned a very respectable family by his many 
virtues, good understanding and sweetness of manners, re- 
ceived no less than seventeen wounds; but he had the good 
fortune to recover from them all, and still lives an ornament 
to his country. The British having completed this business, 
burned the house of Mr. Mathews. 

The British and American armies encamped within thirty 
miles of Charlestown, watching each other's motions, till the 
20th of June, when an attack was made on the part of the 
British army, entrenched at Stono ferry. A feint was to have 
been made from James Island with a body of militia from 
Charlestown, at the same time that General Lincoln began 
the attack from the main; but from mismanagement, and a 
delay in providing boats, the militia from Charlestown did 
not reach their place of destination till several hours after the 
action. The American army consisted of about twelve hun- 
dred men. The British force consisted of six or seven hun- 
dred men. They had three redoubts, with a line of commu- 
nication, and field pieces very advantageously posted in the 
intervals, and the whole secured with an abbatis. That they 
might be harassed or lulled into security, for several nights 
preceding the action they were alarmed by small parties. 
When the real attack was made, two companies of the Seven- 
ty-first regiment saUied out to support the pickets. Lieuten- 
ant-Colonel Henderson ordered his light-infantry to charge 
them, on which they instantly retreated. Only nine of their 
number got safe within their lines. All the men at the 
British field pieces between their redoubts, were either killed 
or wounded. The attack was continued for an hour and 
twenty minutes, and the assailants had manifestly the advan- 
tage; yet the appearance of a reinforcement, to prevent which 
the feint from James Island was intended, made a retreat 

The loss of the Americans on this occasion, in killed and 
wounded was about one hundred and fifty. Among the 
former was the gallant Colonel Roberts, whose superior abili- 
ties as an artillery officer, commanded the approbation of his 
countrymen, and rendered his early fall the subject of uni- 
versal regret. 

Soon after this attack, the American militia, impatient of 
absence from their plantations, generally returned to their 
homes. About the same time the British left the islands in 

178 HisTORr or the revolution. 

the vicinity of Charlestown, retreating from one to anotiier 
till they arrived at Port Royal and Savannah. The sea-coast 
of South CaroUna, to the southward of Charlestown, is so 
chequered with islands and intersected with creeks and 
marshes, as to make the movements of an army extremely 
difficult. The British were much better provided with boats 
than the Americans, and therefore could retire with expedition 
and safety. Various projects were attempted to enable Gen- 
eral Lincoln to pursue them. Boats on wheel-carriages, so 
constructed as to suit the variegated face of the country, were 
proposed ; but before anything of this sort could be completed, 
the British had retreated to places of security. 

This incursion into South Carolina, and subsequent retreat, 
contributed very little to the advancement of the royal cause; 
but it added much to the wealth of the officers, soldiers, and 
followers of the British army, and still more to the distresses 
of the inhabitants. The forces under the command of Gen- 
eral Prevost marched though the richest settlements of the 
State, where are the fewest white inhabitants in proportion to 
the number of slaves. The hapless Africans, allured with 
hopes of freedom, forsook their owners and repaired in great 
numbers to the royal army. They endeavored to recommend 
themselves to their new masters by discovering where their 
owners had concealed their property, and were assisting in 
carrying it off. All subordination being destroyed, they be- 
came insolent and rapacious, and in some instances exceeded 
the British in their plunderings and devastations. Collected 
in great crowds near the royal army, they were seized with 
the camp fever in such numbers that they could not be ac- 
commodated either with proper lodgings or attendance. The 
British carried out of the State, it is supposed, about three 
thousand slaves, many of whom were shipped from Georgia 
and East Florida, and sold in the West Indies. When the 
the British retreated, they had accumulated so much plunder 
that they had not' the means of removing the whole of it 
The vicinity of the American army made them avoid the 
main land, and go off in great precipitation from one island 
to another. Many of the horses which they had collected 
from the inhabitants were lost in ineffectual attempts to trans- 
port them over the rivers and marshes. For want of a suffi- 
cient number of boats, a considerable part of the negroes were 
left behind. They had been so thoroughly impressed by the 
British with the expectation of the severest treatment, and 
even of certain death from their owners, in case of their re- 
turning home, that in order to get off with the retreating army 
they would sometimes fasten themselves to the sides of the 
boats. To prevent this dangerous practice, the fingers of some 

CAMPAIGN OF 1779. 179 

of them were chopped oif, and soldiers were posted with cut- 
lasses and bayonets to oblige them to keep at a proper dis- 
tance. Many of them, laboring under diseases, afraid to return 
home, forsaken by their new masters, and destitute of the 
necessaries of life, perished in the woods. Those who got off 
with the army were collected on Otter Island, where the camp 
fever continued to rage. Without medicine, attendance, or 
the comforts proper for the sick, some hundreds of them 
expired. Their dead bodies, as they lay exposed in the 
woods, were devoured by beasts and birds, and to this day 
the island is strewed with their bones. The British carried 
with them several rice-barrels full of plate, and household 
furniture in large quantities, which they had taken from the 
inhabitants. They had spread over a considerable extent of 
country, and small parties visited almost every house, strip- 
ping it of whatever was most valuable, and riiling the in- 
habitants of their money, rings, jewels, and other personal 
ornaments. The repositories of the dead were in several 
places opened, and the grave itself searched for hidden treas- 
ure.* Feather-beds were ripped open for the sake of the 
ticking. Windows, china-ware, looking-glasses and pictures 
were dashed to pieces. Not only the larger domestic animals 
were cruelly and wantonly shot down, but the licentiousness 
of the soldiery extended so far that, in several places, nothing 
within their reach, however small and insignificant, was suf- 
fered to live. The gardens which had been improved with 
great care, and ornamented with many foreign productions, 
were laid waste, and their nicest curiosities destroyed. The 
houses of the planters were seldom burnt, but in every other 
way the destruction and depredations committed by the Bri- 
tish were enormous. 

Soon after the affair at Stono, on the 20th of June, the con- 
tinental forces under the command of General Lincoln retired 
to Sheldon. Both armies remained in their respective encamp- 
ments till the arrival of the French fleet on the coast roused 
the whole country to immediate activity. 

After the conquest of Grenada, in the summer of 1779, 
Count D'Estaing with the force under his command retired to 
Cape Fran9ois. Thence he sailed for the American continent 
and arrived early in September with a fleet consisting of twenty 
sail of the line, two of fifty guns, and eleven frigates. As 
soon as his arrival on the coast was known, General Lincoln, 
with the army under his command, marched for Savannah; 

* Several of the first settlers of Carolina laid off spots of ground on their plan- 
tations for the interment of their dead, when there were no, or very few, public 
church yards. These private cemeteries are still used by their descendants and 
others for the same purpose. 


and orders were issued for the militia of South Carolina and 
Georgia to rendezvous immediately near the same place. The 
British were equally diligent in preparing for their defence. 
Lieutenant-Colonel Cruger, who had a small command at 
Sunbury, and Lieutenant-Colonel Maitland, who was in force 
at Beaufort, were ordered to repair to Savannah. Count 
D'Estaing made repeated declarations, that he could not re- 
main more than fifteen days on shore. Nevertheless the fall 
of Savannah was considered as certain. It was generally be- 
lieved that in a few days the British would be stripped of all 
their southern possessions. Flushed with these romantic 
hopes, the militia turned out with a readiness that far sur- 
passed their exertions in the preceding campaign. Every aid 
was given from Charlestown, by sending small vessels to assist 
the French in their landing ; but as the large ships of Count 
D'Estaing could not come near the shore, this was notefiected 
till the 12th of September. On the 16th, Savannah was sum- 
moned to surrender. The garrison requested twenty-four 
hours to consider of an answer. This request was made with 
a view of gaining time for the detatchment at Beaufort, com- 
manded by Lieutenant-Colonel Maitland, to join the royal 
army in Savannah. An enterprise was undertaken to prevent 
this junction, but it proved unsuccessful. Lieutenant-Colonel 
Maitland pushed through by Dawfuskies, dragged his boats 
through a gut, and joined Prevost before the time granted for 
preparing an answer to D'Estaing's summons had elapsed. 
The arrival of such a reinforcement, and especially of the 
brave Lieutenant-Colonel Maitland, determined the garrison 
to risk an assault. The French and Americans, who formed 
a junction the evening after, were therefore reduced to the ne- 
cessity of storming or of besieging the garrison. On the even- 
ing of the 23d they broke ground. On the 4th of Octoberthe 
besiegers opened with nine mortars, thirty-seven pieces of 
cannon from the land side, and sixteen from the water. These 
continued to play with short intervals for four or five days, but 
without any considerable efl'ect. 

It was determined to make an assault. This measure was 
forced on D'Estaing by his marine officers, who had remon- 
strated against his continuing to risk so valuable a fleet in its 
present unrepaired condition on such a dangerous coast in the 
hurricane season, and at so great a distance from the shore 
that it might be surprised by a British fleet. In a few days the 
lines of the besiegers might have been carried into the works 
of the besieged ; but under these critical circumstances no 
further delay could be admitted. To assault or to raise the 
seige was the only alternative. Prudence would have dic- 
tated the latter ; but a sense of honor determined to adopt the 

CAMPAIGN OF 1780. 181 

former. The morning of the 9th of October was fixed upon 
for the attack. Two feints were made with the country 
miUtia; and a real attack on the Spring Hill battery with 
2,500 French troops, 600 continentals, and 350 of the Charles- 
town militia, led by Count D'Estaing and General Lincoln. 
They marched up to the hnes with great boldness; but a 
heavy and well directed fire from the batteries, and a cross fire 
from the galleys did such execution as threw the front of the 
column into confusion. A general retreat of the assailants 
took place after they had stood the enemy's fire for fifty-five 
minutes. Count D'Estaing received two wounds; 637 of his 
troops, and 257 continentals were killed or wounded ; of the 
350 Charlestown militia, who were in the hottest of the fire, 
six were wounded and Captain Shepherd killed. The force of 
the garrison was between two and three thousand, of which 
about one hundred and fifty were militia. The damage sus- 
tained by the besieged was trifling as they fired under cover, 
and few of the assailants fired at all. Immediately after this 
unsuccessful assault, the militia almost universally went to 
their homes. Count D'Estaing re-embarked his troops, artillery 
and baggage, and left the continent ; and General Lincoln's 
army marched to Charlestown. 

Thus ended the campaign of 1779, without anything de- 
cisive on either side. After one year, in which the I?ritish had 
overrun the State of Georgia for one hundred and fifty miles 
from the coast and hadpelietrated as far as the lines of Charles- 
town, they were reduced to their original limits in Savannah. 
All their schemes of co-operation with the tories had failed, 
and the spirits of that class of the inhabitants, by repeated 
disappointments, were thoroughly broken. The arrival of the 
French fleet protracted the execution of a plan formed for 
turning the force of the war against the southern States. The 
want of success in the attack on Savannah induced the British 
commander in New York, soon after Count D'Estaing's depart- 
ure, to resume it. 


Campaign of 1780. 

No sooner was the departure of the French fleet from the 
coast of America known at New York, than Sir Henry Clinton 
set on foot a grand expedition against Charlestown. The cam- 
paigns of 1778 and 1775 to the northward, had produced 
nothing of importance. But he regaled himself with flat- 
tering prospects of more easy conquests among the weaker 
States. The almost uninterrupted march of General Prevost 


through the richest parts of South Carolina to the gates of the 
capital; the conduct of the planters who, on that occasion, 
were more attentive to secure their property by submission, 
than to defend it by resistance, together with the recent suc- 
cessful defence of Savannah, all invited the British arms to the 

Unfortunately for Carolina, the most formidable attack was 
made on her capital, at a time when she was least able to de- 
fend it. In 1776 a vote of her new government stamped a 
value on her bills of credit, which in 1780 could not be affixed 
to twenty times as much of the same nominal currency. At 
this important juncture, when the public service needed the 
largest supplies, the paper bills of credit were of the least 
value. To a want of money was added a want of men. The 
militia were exhausted with an uninterrupted continuance of 
hard duty. The winter, to others a time of repose, had been 
to them a season for most active exertions. The dread of the 
small pox which, after seventeen years absence, was known to 
be in Charlestown, discouraged many from repairing to the 
defence of the capital. The six continental regiments, on the 
South Carolina establishment, in the year 1777, consisting of 
2,400 men ; but in the year 1780 they were so much reduced 
by death, desertion, battles, and the expiration of their terms 
of service, that they did not exceed 800. Government had 
neither the policy to forgive aor the courage to punish the 
numbers who, in the preceding campaign, deserting their 
country's cause, had repaired for protection to the royal stand- 
ard of General Prevost. They who stayed at home and sub- 
mitted, generally saved some part of their property. They 
who continued with the American army were plundered of 
everything that could be carried away, and deprived of the 
remainder as far as was possible by wanton destruction. 
After events of this kind, it was no easy matter to call forth 
the militia from their homes to the defence of Charlestown. 
The repulse at Savannah, impressed the inhabitants with high 
ideas of the power of Britain. The impossibility of a retreat 
from an invested town, created in many an aversion from hnes 
and ramparts. The presence of Sir Henry Clinton whOj as 
Commander-in-Chief, could order what reinforcements he 
pleased, and who would naturally wish by something bril- 
liant to etface the remembrance of his defeat in 1776, concurred 
with the causes already mentioned to dispirit the country. 
The North Carolina and Virginia continentals, amounting to 
1,500 men, and also two frigates, a twenty-gun ship, and a 
sloop-of-war, were ordered from the northward for the defence 
of Charlestown. This was all the aid that could be expected 
from Congress. The resolution was nevertheless unanimously 

CAMPAIGN OP 1780. 183 

taken, in a full house of assembly, to defend the town to the 
last extremity. 

The royal army, destined for the reduction of Charlestown, 
embarked at New York on the 26th of December 1779. They 
had a tedious and difficult passage, in which they sustained 
great damage. This, with their touching at Savannah, made 
it as late as the 11th of February, 1780, before they landed at 
the distance of thirty miles from Charlestown. The Assem- 
bly, then sitting, immediately broke up, and delegated, "till 
ten days after their next session, to the Governor, John Rut- 
ledge, and such of his council as he could conveniently consult, 
a power to do everything necessary for the public good, except 
the taking away the hfe of a citizen without a legal trial." In- 
vested with this authority, he immediately ordered the militia to 
rendezvous. Though the necessity was great, few obeyed the 
pressing call. A proclamation was soon after issued, " re- 
quiring such of the militia as were regularly draughted, and 
all the inhabitants and owners of property in the town, to re- 
pair to the American standard, and join the garrison imme- 
diately, under pain of confiscation." This severe, though ne- 
cessary measure, produced very little effect. Had Sir Henry 
Clinton pushed immediately for the town, he might have pos- 
sessed himself of it in four days after his landing; but that 
cautious commander adopted the slow method of a regular 
investiture. At Wappoo, on James Island, he formed a depot 
and erected fortifications, both on that island and on the main, 
opposite to the southern and western extremities of the town. 
On the 29th of March he passed Ashley river, and the third 
day after broke ground at the distance of eleven hundred 
yards, and at successive periods erected five batteries on 
Charlestown Neck. The garrison was equally assiduous in 
preparing for their defence. The works that had been thrown 
up in the spring of the year 1779, were strengthened and ex- 
tended. Lines of defence and redoubts were continued 
across Charlestown Neck from Cooper to Ashley river. In front 
of the lines was a strong abbatis, and a wet ditch picketted on 
the nearest side. Between the abbatis and the lines deep 
holes were dug at short distances from each other. The lines 
were made particularly strong on the right and left, and so 
constructed as to rake the wet ditch in almost its whole extent 
In the centre a strong citadel was erected. Works were 
thrown up on all sides of the town where a landing was prac- 
ticable. The continentals, with the Charlestown battalion of 
artillery, manned the lines in front of the British on the Neck 
between Ashley and Cooper rivers. The works on South 
Bay and other parts of the town, not immediately exposed to 
danger, were defended by the militia. The marine force of 


the State had been increased by converting four schooners 
into galhes, and by the armed ships Bricole and Truite, 
which for that purpose had been lately purchased from the 
French. The inferior numbers of the garrison forbade any 
attempts to oppose Sir Henry Clinton before his landing on 
the main. Immediately after which Lieutenant-ColonelJohn 
Laurens, with a corps of light infantry, briskly attacked his 
advanced guards. In this skirmish. Captain Bowman was 
killed. Major Hyrne, and seven privates wounded. Though 
the lines were no more than field works, yet Sir Henry treated 
them with the respectful homage of three parallels, and made 
his advances with the greatest circumspection. From the 
third to the tenth of April, the first parallel was completed, 
and immediately after, the town was summoned to surrender. 
On the 12th, the batteries were opened, and an almost inces- 
sant fire kept up. 

A British fleet, commanded by Admiral Arbuthnot consist- 
ing of the Renown of fifty guns, the Romulus and Roebuck 
each of forty-four, the Richmond, Le Blonde, Raleigh, Vir- 
ginia, each of thirty-two guns, and the Sandwich armed ship, 
crossed the bar in front of Rebellion road on the 20th of March, 
and anchored in Five Fathom Hole. The force opposed to 
this was the Bricole of forty-four guns, the Providence and 
Boston, each of thirty- two guns, the Queen of France of twenty- 
eight, L'Avanture and the Truite, each of twenty-six, the 
Ranger and brig General Lincoln, each of twenty, and the 
brig Notre Dame of sixteen guns. The first object of Commo- 
dore Whipple, who commanded the American naval force, 
was to prevent Admiral Arbuthnot from crossing the bar; but 
on the near approach of the British fleet he retreated to fort 
Moultrie, and in a few days after to Charlestown. The crews 
and guns of all his vessels, except the Ranger, were put on 
shore to reinforce the batteries. On the 9th of April Admiral 
Arbuthnot weighed anchor at Five Fathom Hole, and taking 
advantage of a strong southerly wind, and flowing tide, passed 
fort Moultrie without stopping to engage it. Colonel Pin ckney, 
who commanded on Sullivan's Island, with three hundred 
men, kept up a brisk and severe fire on the ships in their pas- 
sage. Twenty-seven seamen were killed or wounded. The 
Richmond's fore-topmast was shot away, and the ships in 
general sustained damage. The Acetus transport ran aground 
near Haddrell's point. Captain Gadsden, detached with two 
field-pieces, fired into her with such effect that the crew set 
her on fire, and retreated in boats to the other vessels. The 
royal fleet came to anchor, in about two hours, near the re- 
mains of fort Johnson on James Island, within long shot of 
the town batteries. To prevent their running up Cooper river, 

CAMPAIGN OF 1780. 185 

from which they might have enfiladed the lines, was the next 
object. With this intention eleven vessels had been sunk in 
the channel opposite to the Exchange. The Ranger frigate 
and two galleys were stationed to the northward of it, to co- 
operate with the batteries on shore in defending these obstruc- 
tions, and to attack any armed vessels that might force a pas- 
sage through Hog-Island channel. 

Though the greatest exertions had been made by the gen- 
tlemen in power to reinforce the garrison, and to strengthen 
the lines, yet their endeavors were not seconded by the people. 
No more country militia could be brought into the town, and 
very few could be persuaded to embody in the country. Seven 
hundred continentals, commanded by General Woodford, who 
had marched five hundred miles in twenty-eight days, arrived 
in Charlestown on the 10th of April. This was the only re- 
inforcement the garrison received during the siege, though 
the communication between the town and country was open 
until the middle of April. 

The fire of the besiegers soon discovered itself to be much 
superior to that of the beseiged. The former had the advan- 
tage of twenty-one mortars and royals; the latter only of two. 
While the lines of approach advanced with such rapidity that 
the second parallel, at the distance of three hundred yards, 
was completed on the 20th, the lines of the beseiged in many 
places sustained great damage. On the 14th, the American 
cavalry, as shall be more particularly hereafter related, was 
surprised at Monk's Corner, and totally routed. The British 
immediately extended themselves to the eastward of Cooper 
river, and took post with two hundred and fifty cavalry, and 
five hundred infantry, in the vicinity of Wappetaw. On the 
16th General Lincoln called a council of officers, who were 
of opinion that the weak state of the garrison made it impro- 
per to detach a number sufficient to attack this separate corps. 
The only practicable route of an evacuation was to the right 
of the town. To deter Lincoln from attempting this change 
of position, the British continued to extend and increase their 
force in that quarter. On the 20th and 21st, a council of 
officers was again called to deliberate on the important sub- 
ject of an evacuation. They were of opinion, " that it was 
unadvisable, because of the opposition made to it by the civil 
authority and the inhabitants, and because, even if they should 
succeed in defeating a large body of the enemy posted in their 
way, they had not a sufficiency of boats to cross the Santee 
before they might be overtaken by the whole British army." 
The council of war recommended a capitulation with the be- 
siegers as the most eligible mode of eflTecting the desired evac- 
uation. In this it was proposed that the security of the in- 


habitants, and a safe unmolested retreat for the garrison, with 
baggage and field-pieces to the northeast of Charlestown, 
should be granted on the part of Sir Henry Clinton, as an 
equivalent for the quiet possession of the town, its fortifications 
and dependencies. These terms were instantly rejected, and 
from that time the dispirited garrison made a languid resistance. 
The inferior numbers of the besieged forbade repeated sal- 
lies. The only one made during the siege was on the 24th 
of April, soon after the rejection of the offered terms of capit- 
ulation. This was conducted by Lieutenant-Colonel Hen- 
derson, who led out two hundred men, and attacked the ad- 
vanced working-party of the British, killed several, and took 
eleven prisoners. In this affair Captain Moultrie, of the South 
Carolina line, was killed. The only plan now left for an 
evacuation, was to withdraw privately under cover of the night. 
A council of war held on the 26th pronounced this measure 
impracticable with the present numbers of the garrison. While 
General Lincoln was pressed with these difficulties, the British 
flag was seen flying on fort Moultrie. After the ships had 
passed Sullivan's Island, Colonel Pinckney, with one hundred 
and fifty of the men under his command, was withdrawn 
from that post to reinforce the besieged army in Charlestown. 
The feeble remainder of that garrison, mostly militia, on the 
6th of May surrendered without firing a gun, to Captain Hud- 
son of the British navy. On the next day Sir Henry Chnton 
began a correspondence, and renewed his former terms. At 
this time all the flesh-provisions of the garrison were not 
sufficient to furnish rations for the space of a week. There 
was no prospects either of reinforcements, or of supplies from 
the country. The engineers gave it as their opinion that the 
lines could not be defended ten days longer, and that they 
might at any time be carried by assault in ten minutes. The 
same obstacles in the way of an evacuation still existed with 
increased force. General Lincoln was disposed to close with 
the terms offered, as far as they respected his army; but some 
demur was made in behalf of the citizens. Sir Henry Chnton 
insisted on their being all prisoners on parole. He also evaded 
any determinate answer to the article which requested leave 
for those who did not choose to submit to the British govern- 
ment, to sell their estates and leave the province. The royal- 
ists in the State having had this indulgence at all times since 
the abolition of regal government, it was hoped that on a pro- 
per representation of these matters, in a free Conference, the 
generosity of the beseigers would soften their demands. This 
Conference was asked by General Lincoln, without directly 
refusing what was offered. Contrary to the expectation of the 
besieged, an answer was returned that hostilities should re- 

CAMPAIGN OF 1780. 187 

commence at eight o'clock. When that hour arrived the 
most vigorous onset of the besiegers was immediately expected 
by the garrison. But instead of this neither army fired a gun 
for some time. Both seemed to dread the consequences of an 
assault, and to wish for a continuance of the truce, and a re- 
consideration of the proposed articles. At nine P. M., firing 
commenced from the garrison, and was kept up on both sides 
for several hours with unusual briskness, and did more exe- 
cution than had taken place in the same length of time since 
the commencement of the siege. Shells and carcasses were 
thrown incessantly into almost all parts of the town. Several 
houses were burnt, and many more were with difficulty saved. 
By this time the British had completed their third parallel. 
Besides the cannon and mortars which played on the garrison 
at the distance of less than a hundred yards, rifles were fired 
by the Hessian jagers with such etfect, that very few escaped 
who showed themselves above the lines. On the 11th the 
British crossed the wet ditch by Sap, and advanced within 
twenty-five yards of the lines of the besieged. On this day 
petitions were presented from a great majority of the inhabi- 
tants, and of the country militia, praying General Lincoln to 
accede to the terms oiFered by Sir Henry Clinton. Under these 
circumstances Lincoln found it necessary to assent to the 
articles as proposed without any conference or explanation. 

This was the first instance in the American war of an at- 
tempt to defend a town ; and the unsuccessful event, with its 
consequences, makes it probable that if this method had been 
generally adopted the independence of America could not have 
been so easily supported. 

Much censure was undeservedly cast on General Lincoln 
for risking his army within the lines. Though the contrary 
plan was undoubtedly the best in general, yet he had particu- 
lar reasons to justify his deviation from the example of the 
illustrious Commander-in-Chief of the American army. The 
reinforcements promised him were fully sufficient for the 
security of the town. The Congress and the governments of 
North and South Carolina gave him ground to count upon 
nine thousand nine hundred men. From a variety of causes, 
some of which have been already stated, this paper army, in- 
cluding the militia of both Carolinas, was very little more than 
one-third of that number. Notwithstanding this unfortunate 
termination of his command in the southern district, great 
praise is due to General Lincoln for his judicious and spirited 
conduct, in bafiling, for three months, the greatly superior force 
of Sir Henry Clinton and Admiral Arbuthnot. Though Charles- 
town and the southern army were lost, yet, by their long pro- 
tracted defence, the British plans were not only retarded, but 


deranged; and North Carolina, as will hereafter be made evi- 
dent, was saved for the remainder of the year 1780. 

The return of prisoners transmitted by Sir Henry Clinton, 
on the surrender of Charlestown, was very large. It compre- 
hended everv adult free man of the town, between two and 
three thousand sailors who had been taken from the shipping 
and put into the batteries, and the militia of both Carolinas, 
then in garrison. These swelled the number to upwards of 
5,000, and afforded ample materials for a splendid account 
of the importance of the conquest ; but the real number of 
the privates of the continental army was 1,977, and of these 
500 were in the hospitals. The number of the captive officers 
was also great. During the thirty days of the siege, only 
twenty American soldiers deserted. The militia and sailors 
were stationed in those batteries which were not much ex- 
posed, and therefore they suffered very little. Of the conti- 
nentals who manned the lines in front of the besiegers, eighty- 
nine were killed, and one hundred and thirty-eight wounded; 
among the former were Colonel Parker, an officer who had 
often distinguished himself by his gallantry and good con- 
duct, and Captain Peyton, both of the Virginia line ; Philip' 
Neyle, Aid-de-Camp to General Moultrie; Captains Mitchel 
and Templeton, and Lieutenant Gilbank. The Charlestown 
militia artillery, who were stationed at the lines and did equal 
duty with the continentals, had three men killed ; Adjutant 
Warham and seven privates wounded; about twenty of the 
inhabitants who remained in their houses, were killed by ran- 
dom-shot in the town. Upwards of thirty houses were burnt, 
and many others greatly damaged. 

After the British took possession of the town, the arms 
taken from the army and inhabitants, amounting to five 
thousand, were lodged in a laboratory near a large quantity 
of cartridges and of loose powder. By the imprudence of 
the guard in snapping the guns and pistols, this powder took 
fire, blew up the house, dispersed the burning fragments of 
it, which set fire to and destroyed the workhouse, the jail and 
the old barracks. The British guard, consisting of fifty men, 
stationed at this place, was destroyed, and their mangled 
bodies dashed by the violent explosion against the neighbor- 
ing houses in Archdale street. Several persons in the vicinity 
shared the same fate. Many of the fire-arms were loaded; 
they, with the cartridges going ofi", sent the instruments of 
death in all directions. Upwards of a hundred persons lost 
their lives on this occasion. 

In the tedious and difficult winter passage of the royal army 
from New York to Charlestown, the horses destined to mount 
the British cavalry were lost. Lieutenant-Colonel Tarleton, 

CAMPAIGN or 1780, 189 

after he landed, in a little time obtained a fresh supply and 
began the career of his victories. Soon after he had procured 
horses to mount his cavalry, he joined a body of about a 
thousand men, who had marched through the country from 
Savannah, under the command of General Patterson. On 
the 18th of March, 1780, a detachment from his corps sur- 
prised a party of American militia, about eighty in number, 
at Saltcatcher bridge, killed and wounded several of them and 
dispersed the remainder. Five days after, Lieutenant-Colonel 
Tarleton, with his legion, fell in with another small party of 
mounted militia, near Ponpon, who immediately retreated. 
In the pursuit, three were killed, one wounded, and four taken 
prisoners. His next rencontre was on the 27th with Lieu- 
tenant-Colonel Washington, at the head of his regular corps 
of horse, between the ferry on Ashley river and Rantowle's 
bridge, on Stono. The Americans had the advantage, took 
seven prisoners and drove back the cavalry of the British 
legion; but for want of infantry, durst not pursue them. At 
the beginning of the siege, General Lincoln ordered the regular 
cavalry, amounting to three hundred men, to keep the field; 
and the country militia were ordered to act as infantry in 
their support. The militia, on various pretences, refused to 
attach themselves to the cavalry. This important body of 
horse, which was intended to cover the country, and keep 
open a communication between it and the town, was surprised 
on the 14th of April, at Monk's corner, by a strong party of 
British, led by Lieutenant-Colonels Tarleton and Webster. 
A negro slave, for a sum of money, conducted the British 
from Goose creek, in the night, through unfrequented paths. 
About twenty-five of the Americans were killed or taken. 
They who escaped, were obliged for several days to conceal 
themselves in the swamps. Upwards of thirty horses were 
lost, and became a seasonable supply to the British, who were 
but badly mounted. After this catastrophe, all armed parties 
of Americans, for some time, abandoned that part of the State 
which lies to the southward of Santee. 

Soon after this surprise. Colonel Anthony Walton White 
arrived, and took the command of the remains of the cavalrjr. 
At the head of this corps, mounted a second time with great 
difficulty, he crossed to the southward of the Santee, and, on 
the 6th of May, 1780, came up with a small British party, 
took them prisoners and conducted them to Lanneau's ferry. 
Lieutenant-Colonel Tarleton, with a party of horse, was dis- 
patched to the ferry and arrived there in a few minutes after 
the American cavalry, and instantly charged them with a su- 
perior force. From the want of boats and of infantry, a re- 
treat was impracticable, and resistance unavailing. A route 


took place. Major Call and seven others, escaped on horse- 
back, by urging their way through the advancing British cav- 
alry. Lieutenant-Colonel Washington, Major Jameson, and 
five or six privates, saved themselves by swimming across the 
Santee. About thirty were killed, wounded, or taken. The 
remainder got off by concealing themselves in the swamps. 
The British prisoners, who were in a boat crossing the river, 
being called upon by their friends to come back, rose on their 
guard and were released. 

After the landing of the British in 1780, depredations sim- 
ilar to those alread}'' described, recommenced. As the reduc- 
tion of Carolina was then confidently expected, they did not 
commit such wanton wastes as General Prevost's army ; but 
it is hard to tell which exceeded the other in plundering. As 
the royal army of 1780 was much more numerous, and ex- 
tended over the country on all sides of Charlestown, and had 
the convenience of a large fleet on the coast to carry off their 
spoil, they made much greater collections of bulky articles. 
They possessed themselves in particular of indigo to the valueof 
many thousand dollars. From mistaken policy, the merchants 
and others had stored the greater part of their commodities 
without the lines, and very often on or near the water. These 
collections very generally fell into the hands of the conque- 
rors. The British, on this occasion, plundered by system, 
formed a general stock, and appointed commissaries of cap- 
tures. Spoil collected this way was disposed of for the benefit 
of the royal army. The quantity brought to market was so 
great that, though it sold uncommonly low, yet the dividend 
of a Major General was upwards of four thousand British 
guineas. The private plunder of individuals, on their separate 
account, was often more than their proportion of the public 
stock. Over and above what was sold in Carolina, several vessels 
were sent abroad to market, loaded with rich spoil, taken from 
the inhabitants. Upwards of two thousand plundered negroes 
were shipped oif at one embarkation. Several private gentle- 
men lost in the invasions of 1779 and 1780, from five hundred 
to two thousand dollars worth of plate, and other property in 
proportion. The slaves a second time flocked to the British 
army, and, being crowded together, were visited by the camp 
fever. The small pox, which had not been in the province 
for seventeen years, broke out among them, and spread rap- 
idly. From these two diseases, and the impossibility of their 
being provided with proper accommodations and attendance 
in the British encampments, great numbers of them died, and 
were left un buried in the woods. 

Never did any people more mistake their true interest than 
the inhabitants of South Carohna, in permitting the British 

CAMPAIGN OF 1780. 191 

to obtain foothold in their country. Exhausted with the 
fatigues, and impoverished by the consequences of a war into 
which they had been gradually drawn, without any intention 
originally of pushing it so far, some flattered themselves that 
the reduction of Charlestown would terminate their sufierings; 
but that event proved to them the commencement of still 
greater evils. 

The capital having surrendered, the next object was to se- 
cure the general submission of the inhabitants. To this end 
the victors posted garrisons in ditferent parts of the country, 
and marched with a large body of their troops over the Santee 
towards that extremity of the State which borders on the 
most populous settlements of North Carolina. This caused 
an immediate retreat of some parties of Americans who had 
advanced into the upper parts of South Carolina, with the 
expectation of relieving Charlestown. Among the corps which 
had come forward with that view, there was one commanded 
by Colonel Buford, which consisted of three or four hundred 
continental infantry and a few horsemen. Colonel Tarleton, 
with about seven hundred horse and foot, was dispatched in 
quest of this party. That enterprising officer, having mounted 
his infantry, marched one hundred miles in fifty-four hours, 
came up with them at the Waxhaws, and demanded their 
surrender on terms similar to those granted to the continentals, 
taken in Charlestown. This being refused, an action imme- 
diately ensued. Buford committed two capital mistakes in 
this affair. One was his sending his wagons and artillery 
away before the engagement. The wagons might have served 
as a breast-work to defend his men against the attacks of the 
cavalry. Another mistake was ordering his men not to fire 
till the enemy were within ten yards. A single discharge 
made but little impression on the advancing British horse- 
men. Before it could be repeated, the assailants were in con- 
tact with their adversaries, cutting them down with their 
sabres. The Americans, finding resistance useless, sued for 
quarters, but their submission produced no cessation of hos- 
tilities. Some of them, after they had ceased to resist, lost 
their hands, others their arms, and almost every one was 
mangled with a succession of wounds. The charge was 
urged till five in six of the whole number of the Americans 
were, by Tarleton's official account of this bloody scene, 
either killed or so badly wounded as to be incapable of being 
moved from the field of battle; and by the same account this 
took place, though they made such ineffectual opposition as 
only to kill five and wound twelve of the British. Lord 
Cornwallis bestowed on Tarleton the highest encomiums for 
this enterprise, and recommended him in a special manner to 


royal favor. This barbarous massacre gave a more san- 
guinary turn to the war. Tarleton's quarters became pro- 
verbial, and in the subsequent battles a spirit of revenge gave 
a keener edge to military resentments. 

This total route of all the continental troops of the southern 
States, which were not made prisoners by the capitulation of 
Charlestown, together with the universal panic occasioned by 
the surrender of that capital, suspended for about six weeks 
all military opposition to the progress of the British army. 
In this hour of distress, to the friends of independence the 
royal commander, by proclamation, denounced the extremity 
of vengeance against those of the inhabitants who should 
continue, by force of arms, to oppose the re-establishment of 
British government. The conquerors did not rest the royal 
cause exclusively on threats. On the first of June, nineteen 
days after the surrender of Charlestown, Sir Henry Clinton 
and Admiral Arbuthnot, in the character of commissioners 
for restoring peace to the revolted colonies, by proclamation, 
offered " to the inhabitants, with a few exceptions, pardon for 
their past treasonable offences, and a re-instatement in the 
possession of all those rights and immunities which they 
heretofore had enjoyed under a free British government, exempt 
from taxation except by their own legislatures." These spe- 
cious offers, together with the impossibility of their fleeing 
with their families and effects, and the want of an army to 
which the militia of the State might repair, induced the peo- 
ple in the country to abandon all schemes of further resistance. 
The militia to the southward of Charlestown sent in a flag to 
the commanding officer of the royal detachment at Beaufort, 
and obtained terms similar to those granted to the inhabitants 
of the capital. At Camden, the inhabitants met the British 
with a flag, and negotiated for themselves. The people of 
Ninety-Six assembled to deliberate on what course they 
should pursue. Being informed that the British were ad- 
vancing to that part of the State, they sent a flag to the com- 
manding officer, from whom they learned that Sir Henry 
Clinton had delegated full powers to Captain Richard Pearis 
to treat with them. Articles of capitulation were immediately 
proposed, and soon after ratified, by which they were promised 
the same security for their persons and property which British 
subjects enjoyed. Excepting the extremities of the State, which 
border on North Carolina, the inhabitants who continued in 
the country generally preferred submission to resistance. The 
difference between evacuating and defending towns became 
apparent, and fully proved that the first was the best plan of 
defence for America. 

Though the progress of the British arms was rapid, yet it 

CAMPAIGN OF 1780. 193 

was far short of what was originally expected. Their schemes 
had been deranged as to time, and new events made it neces- 
sary for them to divide their forces and to alter their plans. 
Intelligence was received by Sir Henry Clinton, about the 
time of the surrender of Charlestown, that a large number of 
land forces, and a French fleet, consisting of seven sail-of-the- 
line and five frigates, commanded by M. De Ternay, was to 
have sailed from France so early in the year that its arrival 
on the American coast might be soon expected. This induced 
the Commander-in-Chief of the royal army to re-embark for 
New York early in June, with the greatest part of his army. 
Though the French fleets gained at this time no direct ad- 
vantages for their American allies, yet they completely de- 
ranged the plan of British operations. 

On the departure of Sir Henry Clinton from Charlestown, 
Lord Cornwallis was appointed Commander-in-Chief in the 
southern department, with about four thousand men. This 
force, though far short of what was originally intended for 
southern operations, was deemed fully sufiicient for the pur- 
pose of extending the British conquests. 

The object hitherto pursued by the British commanders 
with regard to the inhabitants of South Carolina, was to in- 
duce them to remain peaceably at their homes. To this end 
they accepted of their submission on very easy terms. All, with 
a few exceptions, who applied, obtained either paroles as pris- 
oners or protections as British subjects. They who preferred 
the latter were required to subscribe a declaration of their allegi- 
ance to the King of Great Britain, but in the hurry of business 
this frequently was omitted, and the privileges of British sub- 
jects were freely bestowed on some without any engagements. 

The general submission of the inhabitants was followed by 
an unusual calm. The British believed that the State of 
South Carolina was thoroughly conquered, but they soon 
found that the disguise which fear had imposed subsisted no 
longer than the present danger. Their experience in America 
had not yet taught them enough of human nature to distin- 
guish a forced submission, in a temporary panic, from a cor- 
dial return to their former allegiance. Subsequent events 
proved that a country is unsubdued as long as the minds of 
the people are actuated by an hostile spirit. 

All military opposition being suspended, the royal com- 
manders, supposing their work in South Carolina to be com- 
pletely finished, began to extend their views to the adjacent 
States. To facilitate their future operations, they conceived a 
scheme of obtaining substantial service from their new sub- 
jects. In the prosecution of this business, their poHcy soon 
lest what arms had gained. While some of the inhabitants 


were felicitating themselves in having obtained a respite from 
the calamities of war, they were no less astonished than con- 
founded by a proclamation, in which they were called upon 
to take arms in support of royal government. All paroles 
given to prisoners not taken by capitulation, and who were 
not in confinement at the surrender of Charlestown, were de- 
clared, on the third of June, 1780, by the Commander-in-Chief, 
" to be null and void after the twentieth of the same month, 
and the holders of them were called upon to resume the 
character of British subjects, and to take an active part in 
forwarding military operations, or to be considered and treated 
as rebels against his majesty's government." This extraordi- 
nary step was taken without any pretence of violation of 
parole on the part of the prisoners. With this proclamation, 
and the enrollment of the militia, commenced the declension 
of British aulhority. Many had applied for paroles and pro- 
tection from the fond expectation that they should be indulged 
with a residence on their estates, and be at full liberty to prose- 
cute their private business. Numbers who, from motives of 
fear or convenience, had submitted, still retained an affection 
for their American brethren, and shuddered at the thought of 
taking arms against them. A great number, considering 
themselves released from their parole by the proclamation, 
conceived that they had a right to. arm against the British, and 
were induced to do so from the royal menace, that they who 
did not enroll themselves as British subjects must expect to 
be treated as enemies. A greater number found it convenient 
to exchange their paroles for protection. To sacrifice all and 
leave the country, required a degree of fortitude that is the lot 
of few. To take -protection, and to enroll themselves as militia 
under the iroya-1 standard, were events wholly unexpected 
when they submitted as prisoners of war. They conceived 
themselves reduced to a very hard alternative. They sub- 
mitted, but their subsequent conduct made it probable that 
this was done, in many cases, with a secret reservation of 
breaking the compulsory tie when a proper opportunity should 
present itself. If this severe alternative had never been im- 
posed, and if the people had been indulged in the quiet pos- 
session of their property and domestic ease, it would have 
been difficult for ('ongress to have made adequate exertions 
for rescuing the State out of the hands of the British. But 
from a concurrence of causes, about this time, there was 
formed a strong party disposed to do and suffer more for the 
expulsion of their new masters than they could be persuaded 
to do six months before to prevent the country from falling 
into their hands. 

The situation of the inhabitants of the town was different 

CAMPAIGN OF 1780. 195 

from that of the country. As they had a right, by the capitu- 
lation, to remain at their homes on parole they were excepted 
from the alternative offered by the proclamation of the third 
of June; other methods were therefore used to compel them 
to become British subjects. Immediately after the surrender 
of Charlestown a few persons, attached to the British govern- 
ment, prepared an address to the General and Admiral, con- 
gratulating them on their conquest. This was signed by two 
hundred and ten of the inhabitants; the greater part of whom 
had been in arms against the British during the seige, and 
among whom were a few who had been leaders in the popular 
government. In answer to their address they were promised 
the privileges and protection of British subjects, on subscribing 
a test of their allegiance and of their willingness to support 
the royal cause. These addressers, who thus decidedly took 
part with the British, immediately made an invidious distinc- 
tion between subjects and prisoners and became the instigators 
of every severity against those who chose to remain on parole. 
As they had revolted from the cause of America, that they 
might be kept in countenance, they labored to draw others into 
the same predicament. This example of exchanging paroles 
for protection was soon followed by many of their fellow- 
citizens. Those of them who owned estates in the country, 
had no security by capitulation, for any property out of the 
lines unless they became subjects. This induced persons so 
circumstanced to join their conquerors. To oblige them uni- 
versally to return to their allegiance, there was a succession 
of proclamations, each abridging the privileges of prisoners. 
Subjects were allowed to sue for their debts before the British 
board of police, but prisoners were denied all benefit of that 
court. Though they were liable to suits they had no security 
for the payment of their debts, but the honor of their debtors. 
The paroles granted to prisoners, after the surrender of the 
town, were much more limited than might have been expected. 
The citizens of the town were restrained from going out of the 
hnes, or on the water, without special permission. This, when 
applied for, was sometimes wantonly refused; and on other 
occasions might be obtained for money. Ineffectual attempts 
were made to obtain more generous limits, but no extension 
was granted; and they who seemed averse from signing the 
offered paroles were informed that, in case of an absolute re- 
fusal, they must expect close confinement. These shackles 
sat very uneasy on free citizens who had heretofore been ac- 
customed to the fullest enjoyment of personal liberty; but no 
relaxation could be obtained on any other condition than that 
of professing a return to their allegiance. The conquerors, in 
the most perfect confidence of keeping the province and of 


extending their conquests, valued themselves much upon their 
generosity in being willing to receive as British subjects the 
citizens whom they viewed in the light of vanquished rebels. 
Under the influence of this opinion they laughed at the folly, 
and resented the ingratitude and impudence of those who 
chose to remain in the character of prisoners. Such persons 
met with every discouragement, and at the same time the door 
of readmission to the privileges of subjects was thrown wide 
open. This made some martyrs, but more hypocrites. A 
numerous class of people were reduced to the alternative of 
starving or suing for protection. Those inhabitants of Charles- 
town, who were of the Hebrew nation, and others who were 
shopkeepers, were, while prisoners, encouraged to make pur- 
chases from the British merchants who came with the conquer- 
ing army ; and after they had contracted large debts of this 
kind, were precluded by proclamation from selling the goods 
they had purchased unless they assumed the name and char- 
acter of British subjects. Mechanics and others were allowed, 
for some months after the surrender, to follow their respective 
occupations ; but, as they could not compel payment for their 
services, repeated losses soon convinced them of the conve- 
nience of British protection. Great numbers in all commu- 
nities are wholly indifferent what form of government they 
live under. They can turn with the times, and submit with 
facility to the present ruling power whatsoever it may be. 
The low state of American affairs in the summer of 1780 in- 
duced a belief among many of the inhabitants that Congress, 
from necessity, had abandoned the idea of contending for the 
Southern States. The resolutions of that body, disavowing 
this imputation, were carefully concealed from the prisoners. 
Many believing that South Carolina would finally remain a 
British province, and being determined to save their estates 
under every form of government, concluded that the sooner 
they submitted the less they would lose. The negroes and 
other property of individuals had been seized by the British 
during the siege. Prisoners on parole had no chance of re- 
possessing themselves of any part of this plunder, though 
subjects were allowed to put in their claim, and were some- 
times successful. A party always attached to royal government, 
though they had conformed to the laws of the State, rejoiced 
in the revolution, and sincerely returned to their allegiance; 
but their number was inconsiderable in comparison with the 
multitude who were obliged by necessity, or induced by con- 
venience, to accept of British protection. 

The inhabhants of the country, for the most part, lay more 
at the unconditional mercy of the conquerors than the citizens 
of the capital. Those who refused to give up their paroles, 

CAMPAIGN OF 1780. 197 

and did not flee out of the country, were generally removed 
from their families and confined to some of the islands on the 
sea-coast; while their property became the spoil and plunder 
of a rapacious army. In this trying situation, the various 
ruling passions of individuals appeared without disguise. 
Some men of the largest fortunes and who had been promoted 
to exalted stations, both civil and military, relinquished the 
service of the State for present ease and convenience. A few 
of this character, who were entirely out of the way of personal 
danger, and in the full enjoyment of the privileges of free- 
men, voluntarily returned and bowed their necks to the con- 
querors. In direct contradiction to the whole tenor of their past 
conduct, they attempted to apologize for their inconsistency 
by declaring that they had never aimed at independence, and 
were always averse from an alliance with France. The mis- 
chievous effects of negro slavery were, at this time, abundantly 
apparent. Several who had Hved in ease and affluence from 
the produce of their lands, cultivated by the labor of slaves, 
had not fortitude enough to dare to be poor. Sentiments of 
honor, and love of their country, made them wish to preserve 
a consistency of conduct by refusing submission to British 
government; but the impossibility of supporting themselves 
by their own exertions, counteracted every generous resolution. 
The conflict of contrary passions, and the distress of the 
times, drove several to the excessive use of spirituous liquors, 
which proved the source of diseases and often destroyed life. 
Though numbers broke through the solemn ties by which 
they had voluntarily bound themselves to support the cause 
of America, illustrious sacrifices were made at the shrine of 
liberty; several submitted to a distressing exile, or a more in- 
tolerable confinement. The proprietors of some of the best 
estates in South Carolina suffered them to remain in the power 
and possession of the conquerors, rather than stain their honor 
by deserting their country. The rich staked their fortunes ; 
but in the humble walks of obscurity were found several of 
the middling and poorer class of citizens, who may be truly 
said to have staked their lives on the cause of America ; for 
they renounced the comforts subservient to health in warm 
climates, and contented themselves with a scanty portion of 
the plainest necessaries of life in preference to joining the 
enemies of independence. In this crisis of danger to the liber- 
ties of America, the ladies of South Carolina conducted them- 
selves with more than spartan magnanimity. They gloried 
in the appellation of rebel ladies; and though they withstood 
repeated solicitations to grace public entertainments, with their 
presence, yet they crowded on board prison-ships, and other 
places of confinement, to solace their suffering countrymen. 


While the conquerors were regaling themselves at concerts 
and assemblies, they codld obtain very few of the fair sex to 
associate with them ; but no sooner was an American officer 
introduced as a prisoner, than his company was sought for 
and his person treated with every possible mark of attention 
and respect. On other occasions the ladies in a great measure 
retired from the public eye, wept over the distresses of their 
country, and gave every proof of the warmest attachment to 
its suffering cause. In the height of the British conquests, 
when poverty and ruin seemed the unavoidable portion of 
every adherent to the independence of America, the ladies in 
general discovered more firmness than the men. Many of 
them, like guardian angels, preserved their husbands from 
falling in the houi' of temptation when interest and conve- 
nience had almost gotten the better of honor and patriotism. 
Among the numbers who were banished from their families 
and whose property was seized by the conquerors, many ex- 
amples could be produced of ladies cheerfully parting with 
their sons, husbands, and brothers, exhorting them to fortitude 
and perseverance, and repeatedly entreating them never to 
suffer family attachments to interfere with the duty they owed 
to their country. When, in the progress of the war, they were 
also comprehended under a general sentence of banishment, 
with equal resolution they parted with their native country 
and the many endearments of home — followed their husbands 
into prison-ships and distant lands, where, though they had 
long been in the habit of giving, they were reduced to the 
necessity of receiving charity. They renounced the present 
gratifications of wealth, and the future prospects of fortunes 
for their growing offspring — adopted every scheme of economy, 
and, though born in affluence, and habituated to attendance, 
betook themselves to labor. 

Whilst the conquerors were indefatigable in their endeavors 
to strengthen the party for royal government by the addition 
of new subjects, the American were not inattentive to their 
interests. During the siege of Charlestown, General Lincoln 
in the most pressing manner, requested Governor Rutledge, 
with his council, to go out of town ; on the idea that the civil 
authority of the State would be exerted to much greater ad- 
vantage in the country than in the besieged metropolis. On 
the 12th of April, 1780, he left Charlestown. Every exertion 
was made by him to embody the country militia, and to bring 
them forward for the relief of the besieged capital. Failing 
in this, he attempted to make a stand to the north of the Santee, 
The reduction of the town, with the army enclosed, occasioned 
such a general panic among the militia that they could not 
be persuaded to second his views. Governor Rutledge in a 

CAMPAIGN OF 1780. 199 

little time retired to the northward, where he was more suc- 
cessful in his negotiations with North Carolina, Virginia, and 
Congress. Soon after, he returned to South Carolina, and gave 
vigor, union, and force to the inhabitants in their exertions 
against British government. 

During the siege, expresses were sent by General Lincoln 
to Congress, the States of North Carolina and Virginia, repre- 
senting the unpromising appearance of affairs in South Caro- 
lina. In consequence of these several requisitions. Congress 
determined that a considerable detachment from their main 
army should be immediately marched to the southward. The 
State of North Carolina, also, ordered a large body of their 
militia to take the field, and to be relieved every three months. 
These stamina of a second southern army were originally 
designed to compel the British to raise the siege of Charles- 
town ; but being too late for that, they became a respectable 
check to the extension of their conquests. 

As the British advanced to the upper country of South 
Carolina, a considerable number of the determined friends of 
independence retreated before them, and took refuge in North 
Carolina. In this class was Colonel Sumpter, a gentleman 
who had formerly commanded one of the continental regi- 
ments, and who was known to possess a great share of bravery 
and other military talents. In a very little time after he had 
forsaken his home, a detachment of the British turned his 
wife and family out of doors, burned the house and every 
thing that was in it. A party of these exiles from South Caro- 
lina, who had convened in North Carolina, made choice of 
Colonel Sumpter to be their leader. At the head of this little 
band of freemen he soon returned to his own State, and took 
the field against the victorious British. He made this gallant 
effort at a time when the inhabitants had generally abandoned 
the idea of supporting their own independence, and when he 
had every difficulty to encounter. The State was no longer 
in a condition to pay, clothe, or feed the troops who had en- 
rolled themselves under his command. His followers were, 
in a great measure, unfurnished with arms and ammunition, 
and they had no magazines from which they might draw a 
supply. The iron tools on the neighboring farms were worked 
up for their use by common blacksmiths, into rude weapons 
of war. They supplied themselves, in part, with bullets by 
melting the pewter with which they were furnished by private 
housekeepers. They sometimes came td battle Avhen they 
had not three rounds a man; and some were obliged to keep 
at a distance, till, by the fall of others, they were supplied 
with arms. When they proved victorious, they were obliged 
to rifle the dead and wounded of their arms and ammunition 


to equip them for their next engagement. At the head of 
these volunteers Colonel Sumpter penetrated into South Caro- 
lina, and recommenced a military opposition to the British 
after it had been suspended for about six weeks. This un- 
looked-for impediment to the extension of British conquests 
roused all the passions which disappointed ambition can in- 
spire. The late conquerors having in their official dispatches 
asserted," that the inhabitants from every quarter had repaired 
to the detatchments of the royal army, and to the garrison of 
Charlestovvn, to declare their allegiance to the King, and to 
offer their services in arms in support of his government; 
that in many instances they had brought in as prisoners their 
former oppressors or leaders; and that there were few men in 
South Carohna that were not either their prisoners or in arms 
with them;" and now, finding armed parties suddenly appear- 
ing in favor of independence, were filled with indignation. 
Their successes had flattered them with hopes of distinguished 
rank among the conquerors of America; but these unexpected 
hostilities made them fear that their names would be enrolled 
among those who, by pompous details of British victories, 
and exaggerated pictures of American sufferings, had deceived 
the people of England into a continued support of an expen- 
sive and ruinous war. Forgetting their experience in the 
northern States, they had believed the submission of the in- 
habitants to be sincere; making no allowance for that pro- 
pensity in human nature which leads mankind, when in the 
power of others, to frame their intelligence with more attention 
to what is agreeable than to what is true; the British for some 
time conceived that they had little to fear on the south side 
of Virginia. When experience convinced them of the fallacy 
of their hopes, they were transported with rage against the 
inhabitants. Without taking any share of the blame to them- 
selves for their policy in constraining men to an involuntary 
submission, they charged them with studied duplicity and 
treachery. Lenient measures were laid aside for those which 
were dictated by the spirit of revenge. Nor were opportuni- 
ties long wanting for the indulgence of this mahgnant passion. 
Lord Rawdon, whose temper was soured by disappointment, 
and whose breast was agitated with rage against the new sub- 
jects for their unmeaning submissions, on the first rnmor of 
an advancing American army, called on the inhabitants in 
and near Camden to take up arms against their approaching 
countrymen; and confined in the common jail those who 
refused. In the midst of summer, upwards of one hundred 
and sixty persons were shut up in one prison ; and twenty or 
thirty of them, though citizens of the most respectable char- 
acters, were loaded whh irons. Mr. James Bradley, Mi'. 

CAMPAIGN OP 1780. 201 

Strother, Colonel Few, Mr. Kershaw, Captain Boykin, Colonel 
Alexander, Mr. Irwin, Colonel Winn, Colonel Hunter, and 
Captain John Chesnut, were in the number of those who were 
subjected to these indignities. 

The friends of independence having once more taken the 
field in South Carolina, a party of the corps commanded by 
Colonel Sumpter, consisting of one hundred and thirty-three 
men, on the 12th of July, 1780, engaged at WiUiams' Plan- 
tation, in the upper parts of South Carolina, with a detach- 
ment of the British troops and a large body of tories com- 
manded by Captain Huck. They were posted in a lane, 
both ends of which were entered at the same time by the 
Americans. In this unfavorable position they were speedily 
routed and dispersed. Colonel Ferguson, of the British mili- 
tia. Captain Huck, and several others, were killed. This was 
the first advantage gained over the royal forces since their 
landing in the beginning of the year. At the very moment 
this unexpected attack was made, a number of women were 
on their knees, vainly soliciting Captain Huck for his mercy 
in behalf of their families and property. During his com- 
mand he had distressed the inhabitants by every species of 
insult and injury. He had also shocked them with his pro- 
fanity. In a very particular manner he displayed his enmity 
to the Presbyterians, by burning the library and dwelling- 
house of their clergyman, the Rev. Mr. Simpson, and all bibles 
which contained the Scots translation of the psalms. These 
proceedings, no less impolitic than impious, inspired the nu- 
merous devout people of that district with an unusual anima- 
tion. A warm love for independence blended itself with a 
religious fervor, and these two passions reciprocally added 
strength to each other. The inhabitants of that part of the 
State generally arranged themselves under the command of 
Colonel Sumpter, and opposed the British with the enthu- 
siasm of men called upon to defend not only their civil liber- 
ties, but their holy religion. The effects of this ardor were 
very sensibly felt. Colonel Sumpter was soon reinforced to 
the number of six hundred men. At the head of this party, 
on the 30th of July, 1780, he made a spirited but unsuccess- 
ful attack on the British post at Rocky Mount. Without 
delay he marched in quest of other British detachments, and 
in eight days after successfully attacked one of their posts at 
the Hanging Rock, in which was a considerable force of regu- 
lars and tories. The Prince of Wales' regiment, which de- 
fended this place, was nearly annihilated, and a large body of 
tories, which had advanced from North Carolina under Colonel 
Brian, was completely routed and dispersed. 

It had been for some time known that an American army 


was marching from the northward for the relief of their 
southern bretliren. The panic occasioned by the fall of Charles- 
town was daily abating. The whig militia, on the extremities 
of the State, formed themselves into small parties under lead- 
ers of their own choice; and sometimes attacked detach- 
ments of the British army, but much more frequently those 
of their own countrymen who were turning out as royal 
militia. These American parties severally acted from the im- 
pulse of their own minds. They set themselves in opposition 
to the British without the knowledge of each other's motions, 
and without any preconcerted general plan. Colonel Wil- 
liams, of the district of Ninety-Six, in particular, was indefat- 
igable in collecting and animating the friends of Congress in 
that settlement. With these he frequently harassed the con- 
querors. On the 18th of August 1780 he attacked a consid- 
erable party of British and tories, at Musgrove's mills, on the 
Enoree river. Colonel Innis, of the South Carolina roy- 
alists, was wounded; and the whole of his party obliged to 

During the siege of Charlestown fourteen hundred conti- 
nental troops, consisting of the Delaware and Maryland line, 
commanded by Major General Baron DeKalb, were by Con- 
gress, ordered to the southward. They marched from head- 
quarters at Morristown, in New Jersey, on the 16th of April 
1780, embarked at the head of Elk in May, and landed soon 
after at Petersburg in Virginia ; and from thence proceeded by 
land towards South Carolina. The country was thinly in- 
habited and poorly cultivated. The last year's crop was nearly 
expended, and the present one was not sufficiently ripe. The 
troops subsisted principally on lean cattle collected in the 
woods. The officers were so distressed for the want of flour 
that they made use of hair-powder to thicken their soup, but 
soon found a more savory substitute in green corn. Peaches 
were also used, and became a seasonable supply. The whole 
army was sometimes supplied for twenty-four hours in this 
way without either meat or tioiir. 

A considerable number of the militia of North Carolina had 
taken the field, and had agreed to rendezvous at Anson Court 
House on the 20th of July, that they might be in readiness to 
co-operate with the continental army. On the approach of the 
Americans Major M'Arthur, who commanded on the Peedee, 
called in his detachments and marched directly to join the 
main body of the royal army at Camden. On the day that 
the British relinquished this part of the country, the inhabi- 
tants, distressed by their depredations and disgusted with their 
conduct, generally took arms. Lord Nairne, and one hundred 
and six British invalids, going down the Peedee, were made 

CAMPAIGN OF 1780. 203 

prisoners by a party of the Americans, commanded by Major 
Thomas, who had lately been received as loyal subjects. A 
large boat coming up from Georgetown, well stored with sup- 
pUesfor Major M' Arthur's party, was seized for the use of the 
American army. All the new made British militia othcers, 
excepting Colonel Mills, were made prisoners by their own 
men. For some time past the people were daily growing more 
and more dissatisfied with the British. Tired of war, they had 
submitted to their government with the flattering expectation 
of bettering their condition ; but they soon found their mis- 
take. The protection they received as the recompense of their 
submissions, was wholly inadequade to the purpose of secu- 
ring their property. When the British first took possession of 
the country, they considered themselves as having a right to 
seize on the property of rebels. Their commissaries, and 
quartermasters, took provisions and all other things wanted by 
the army, wherever they were to be found. Though articles 
taken this way was all charged to the British government, yet 
very few of the persons from whom they were taken ever re- 
ceived any satisfaction. After the State had generally sub- 
mitted, the same practice was continued. The rapacity of the 
common men, the indigence and avarice of many of the offi- 
cers, and the gains of the commissaries and quartermasters, 
all concurred to forbid any check to this lucrative mode of 
procuring supplies. They found it much more profitable to 
look on the inhabitants in the light of rebels, whose property 
was forfeited, than as reclaimed subjects who were reinstated 
in the protection of government. When they applied in 
the latter character to claim their rights, and to remonstrate 
against British depredations, they much oftener received in- 
sults than redress. People who had received this kind of 
treatment, and who believed that allegiance and protection 
were reciprocal, conceived themselves released from their late 
engagements, and at full liberty to rejoin the Americans. 

Though the inhabitants of Charlestown had not the same 
opportunity of showing their resentment against their con- 
querors, yet many of the new-made subjects and the pris- 
oners were very soon disgusted with their conduct. Every 
ungenerous construction was put on an ambiguous capitu- 
lation, to the disadvantage of the citizens; and their rights 
founded thereon were, in several instances, most injuriously 
violated. Continental officers were stripped of their property, 
on the pretence that they were soldiers, and had no right to 
claim under the character of citizens. The conquerors de- 
prived the inhabitants of their canoes by an illiberal construc- 
tion of the article which gave them the shipping in the harbor. 
Many slaves, and a great deal of property, though secured by 


the capitulation, were carried off by Sir Henry Clinton's army 
in June 1780. Immediately after the surrender, five hundred 
negroes were ordered to be put on board the ships for pioneers 
to the royal forces in New York. These were taken where 
ever they could be found, and no satisfaction was made to 
their owners. The common soldiers, from their sufferings and 
services during the siege, conceived themselves entitled to a 
licensed plunder of the town. That their murmurings might 
be soothed, the officers connived at their reimbursing themselves 
for their fatigues and dangers at the expense of the citizens. 
Almost every private house had one or more of the officers or 
privates, of the royal army quartered upon them. In provi- 
ding for their accommodation very little attention was paid to 
the convenience of families. The insolence and disorderly 
conduct of persons thus forced upon the citizens, were in 
many instances intolerable to freemen heretofore accustomed 
to be masters in their own houses. To induce a people who 
had tasted of the sweets of independence to return to the con- 
dition of subjects, their minds and affections, as well as their 
armies, ought to have been conquered. This more delicate 
and difficult task was rarely attempted. The officers, privates, 
and followers of the royal army, were generally more intent 
on amassing fortunes by plunder and rapine than on pro- 
moting a re-union of the dissevered members of the empire. 
The general complexion of the officers serving in the royal 
army against America, was very different from what had 
been usual in better times. In former wars, dignity, honor 
and generosity, were invariably annexed to the military char- 
acter. Though the old officers of the British regiments in 
America were for the most part gentlemen, and eminently pos- 
sessed these virtues, yet several vacancies both at the com- 
mencement and in the progress of the American war had been 
filled up by a new set, greatly inferior in education and good 
breeding. Several new corps had been raised in America, in 
which commissions had been promised by public advertise- 
ment to any person who would recruit a given number of 
men. They who possessed most of that low cunning, which 
is necessary to wheedle the vulgar, were of course most suc- 
cessful in procuring these commissions. From an army 
abounding with such unworthy characters, and stationed 
among a people whom they hated as rebels, and from the 
plunder of whom theyhoped to make fortunes, it was not rea- 
sonable to expect that winning behavior which was necessary 
to conciliate the affections of the revolted States. The royal 
officers, instead of soothing the inhabitants into good humor, 
often aggravated intolerable injuries by more intolerable insults; 
they did more to reestablish the independence of the State than 

CAMPAIGN OF 1780. 205 

could have been effected by the armies of Congress, had the 
conquerors guided themselves by maxims of sound policy. The 
high spirited citizens of Carolina could not brook these oppres- 
sions and insults, but most ardently wished to rid the country 
of the insulting oppressors. From motives of this kind, and a 
prevailing attachment to the cause of their country, many 
broke through all ties to join the advancing American army 
and more most cordially wished them success. 

Major General Baron DeKalb commmanded the continen- 
tals sent from the northward, till the 27th of July, when 
Major General Gates arrived with the orders of Congress to 
take the command. Great were the expectations of the pub- 
lic from this illustrious officer. The cloud that had for some 
time overshadowed American affairs, began to disperse. Noth- 
ing short of the speedy expulsion of the British from the 
State, came up to the wishes and hopes of the friends of in- 
dependence. While the American army advanced towards 
Camden, Colonel Sumpter was to the westward of the Wateree, 
and daily augmenting his corps from the revolting inhabitants 
who enrolled themselves under his standard. On receiving 
intelligence that an escort of clothing, ammunition and other 
stores for the garrison at Camden, was on the road from Charles- 
town, and that the whole must pass the Wateree ferry under 
coyer of a small redoubt which the British occupied on the 
south side of the river, he formed a successful plan for reduc- 
ing the redoubt and capturing the convoy. On the 15th of 
August, General Stevens, with a brigade of Virginia militia, 
joined General Gates. The whole of the American army 
now amounted to three thousand six hundred and sixty-three ; 
of which about nine hundred were continental infantry, and 
seventy cavalry. 

The arrival of this force being quite unexpected. Lord Corn- 
wallis was distant from the scene of action. No sooner was 
he informed of the approach of General Gates, than he pre- 
pared to join his army at Camden. He arrived, and super- 
seded Lord Rawdon in command, on the 14th. His inferior 
force, consisting of abont 1,700 infantry and 300 cavalry, 
would have justified a retreat; but, considering that no pro- 
bable event of an action would be more injurious to the royal 
interest than that measure, he chose to stake his fortune in a 
contest with the conqueror of Burgoyne. On the night of 
the fifteenth, he marched out with his whole force to attack 
the Americans ; and at the same hour. General Gates put his 
army in motion, with a determination to take an eligible posi- 
tion between Sanders' creek and Green Swamp, about eight 
miles from Camden. The advanced parties of both met about 
midnight, and a firing commenced. In this skirmish, Colonel 


Porterfield, a very gallant officer of the State of Virginia, re- 
ceived a mortal wound. After some time both parties re- 
treated to their main bodies, and the whole lay on their arms. 
In the morning, a severe and general engagement took place. 
The American army was formed in the following manner: 
The second Maryland brigade, commanded by Brigadier Gen- 
eral Gist, on the right of the line, flanked by a morass ; the 
North Carolina militia, commanded by Major General Cas- 
well, in the centre ; and the Virginia militia, commanded by 
Brigadier General Stevens, on the left, flanked by the North 
Carolina militia, light infantry and a morass. The artillery 
was posted in the instertices of brigades, and on the most ad- 
vantageous grounds. Major General Baron DeKalb com- 
manded on the right of the line, and Brigadier General Small- 
wood commanded the first Maryland brigade, which was 
posted as corps-de-reserve two or three hundred yards in the 
rear. In this position, the troops remained till dawn of day. 
As soon as the British appeared about two hundred yards in 
front of the North Carolina troops, the artillery was ordered 
to fire, and Brigadier General Stevens to attack the column 
which was displayed to the right. That gallant officer ad- 
vanced with his brigade of militia in excellent order within 
fifty paces of the enemy, who were also advancing, and then 
called out to his men, "my brave fellows, you have bayonets 
as well as they, we'll charge them." At that moment the 
British infantry charged with a cheer, and the Virginians, 
throwing down their arms, retreated with the utmost precipi- 
tation. The militia of North Carolina followed the unworthy 
example, except a few of General Gregory's brigade, who 
paused a very little longer. A part of Colonel Dixon's regi- 
ment fired two orthree rounds, butthe greater part of thewhole 
militia fled without firing a single shot. The whole left wing 
and centre being gone, the continentals, who formed the right 
wing, and the corps of reserve, engaged about the same time 
and gave the British an unexpected check. The second bri- 
gade, consisting of Maryland and Delaware troops, gained 
ground, and had taken no less than fifty prisoners. The first 
brigade being considerably out-flanked, were obliged to retire; 
but they rallied again, and with great spirit renewed the fight. 
This expedient was repeated two or three times. The British 
directed their whole force against these two devoted corps, and 
a tremendous fire of musketry was contiiuied on both sides 
with great steadiness. At length Lord Cornwallis observing 
that there was no cavalry opposed to him, poured in his dra- 
goons and ended the contest. Never did men behave better 
than the continentals in the whole of this action; but all at- 
tempts to rally the militia were ineffectual. Lieutenant Colonel 

CAMPAIGN OF 1780. 207 

Tarleton's legion charged them as they broke, and pursued them 
as they were fleeing. Without having it in their power to de- 
fend themselves, they fell in great numbers under the le- 
gionary sabres. 

Major General Baron DeKalb, an illustrious German in the 
service of France, who had generously engaged in the support 
of the American independence, and who exerted himself with 
great bravery to prevent the defeat of the day, received eleven 
wounds, of which, though he received the most particular as- 
sistance from the British, he in a short time expired. Lieu- 
tenant-Colonel DuBuysson, Aid-de-Camp to Baron DeKalb, 
embraced his wounded General, announced his rank and na- 
tion to the surrounding foe, and begged that they would spare 
his life. While he generously exposed himself to save his 
friendj, he received sundry dangerous wounds, and was taken 
prisoner. Brigadier-General Rutherford, a valuable officer 
of the most extensive influence over the North Carolina 
militia, surrendered to a party of the British legion, one of 
whom, after his submission, cut him in several places. Of the 
South Carolina line, that brave and distinguished officer Major 
Thomas Pinckney, acting as Aid-de-Camp to Major General 
Gates, had his leg shattered by a musket ball, and fell into the 
hands of the conquerors. 

The Americans lost eight field pieces, the whole of their 
artillery, upwards of two hundred wagons, and the greatest 
part of their baggage. The loss of the British, in killed and 
wounded, was about three hundred. The royal army fought 
with great bravery; but their success was in a great measure 
owing to the precipitate flight of the militia, and the superi- 
ority of their cavalry. 

The militia composed so great a part of the American army, 
that General Gates, when he saw them leave the field, lost all 
hopes of victory, and retired in order to rally a sufficient num- 
ber to cover the retreat of the continentals, but the further the 
militia fled, the more they were dispersed. Finding nothing 
could be done, he continued his retreat into North Carolina. 
On his way he was soon overtaken by an officer from Colonel 
Sumpter, who reported that the colonel had fully succeeded 
in his enterprise against the British post at the ferry, had cap- 
tured the garrison, and intercepted the escort with the stores; 
but no advantage could be taken of this event, as the success- 
ful party of the Americans was on the opposite side of the 
river. A few of the Virginia miUtia were halted at Hills- 
borough ; but in a little time their tour of service was out, and 
they were discharged. The North Carolina militia went dif- 
ferent ways, as their hopes led or their fears drove them. Al- 
most all the American officers were separated from their com- 


mands. Every corps was broken in action, and dispersed 
through the woods. Major Anderson, of the Third Maryland 
regiment, was the only infantry officer who kept together any 
number of men. The retreat of the heavy baggage was de- 
layed till the morning of the action, and the greatest part of it 
fell into the hands of the British, or was plundered in the 
retreat. The pursuit was rapid for more than twenty miles; 
even at the distance of forty miles, teams were cut out of the 
wagons, and numbers promoted their flight on horseback. 
The road by which they fled was strewed with arms and 
baggage, which in their trepidation they had abandoned, and 
covered with sick, the wounded and the dead. 

On the 17th and 18th of August, Brigadiers Smallwood and 
Gist, and several other officers, arrived at Charlotte. At this 
place also had rendezvoused upwards of one hundred regular 
infantry of different corps, besides Colonel Armand's cavalry, 
and a small partizan corps of horse, which took the field on 
this occasion under the command of Major Davie. Some 
provisions having been collected there, proved a most season- 
able refreshment. The drooping spirits of the officers began 
to revive, and hopes were entertained that a respectable force 
might soon again be assembled from the country militia, and 
from the addition of Colonel Sumpter's victorious detachment. 
All these prospects were soon obscured by intelligence that 
arrived on the 19th, of the complete dispersion of that corps. 
On hearing of General Gates' defeat. Colonel Sumpter began 
to retreat up the south side of the Wateree, with his prisoners 
and captured stores. Lord Cornwallis dispatched Lieutenant- 
Colonel Tarleton, with his legion and a detachment of in- 
fantry, to pursue him. This was done with so much celerity 
and address, that he was overtaken on the ISth at Fishing 
Creek. The British horse rode into their camp before they 
were prepared for defence. The Americans having been four 
days without sleep or provisions, were more obedient to the 
calls of nature than attentive to her first law — self-preserva- 
tion. Colonel Sumpter had taken every prudent precaution 
to prevent a surprise, but his videttes were so fatigued, that they 
neglected their duty. With great difficulty he got a few of 
them to make a short stand, but the greater part of his corps 
fled to the river or the woods. The British prisoners, about 
three hundred, were all retaken and conducted to Camden. 
Colonel Sumpter lost all his artillery, and his whole detach- 
ment was either killed, captured or dispersed. 

Every hope of making a stand at Charlotte being extin- 
guished, a resolution was soon taken for retreating to Salis- 
bury. A circumstantial detail of this Avould complete the 
picture of distress. The officers suffered much for want of 

CAMPAIGN OP 1780. 209 

horses to carry off their wounded companions. The citizens 
of that part of the north State were reduced to great difficul- 
ties in removing their families and effects. It was expected 
that every day would bring intelligence of Lord Cornwallis 
pursuing his fugitive enemies. The inhabitants generally 
meant to flee before the approaching conquerors. The con- 
fusion that took place among all orders is more easily conceived 
than expressed. 

The loss of Charlestown, and the capture of an army within 
its lines, had reduced American affairs in South Carolina low; 
but the complete rout of a second army, procured with great 
difficulty for the recovery of the State, sunk them much lower, 
and filled the friends of independence with fearful anxiety for 
the future fate of their country. 

The British were unusually elated, and again flattered 
themselves, that all opposition in South Carolina was effect- 
ually subdued. Though their victory was complete, and there 
was no army to oppose them, yet the extreme heat of the 
weather, and sickliness of the season, restrained them for some 
time from pursuing their conquests. Much was to be done 
in the interior police of the country. To crush that spirit of 
opposition to British government, which discovered itself on 
the approach of an American army, engaged the attention of 
Lord Cornwallis. 

By the complete dispersion of the continental forces the 
country was in the power of the conquerors. The expectation 
of aid from the northward was now less probable than im- 
mediately after the reduction of Charlestown. Several of the 
revolted subjects had fallen as prisoners into the hands of the 
British, and the property of others lay at their mercy. This 
situation of public affairs pointed out the present moment of 
triumph, as a most favorable conjucture for breaking the spirits 
of those who were attached to the cause of independence. To 
prevent their future co-operation with the forces of Congress, 
a severer policy was henceforward adopted. 

Unfortunately for the inhabitants this was taken up on 
grounds which involved thousands in distress, and not a few 
in the loss of life. The British conceived themselves in pos- 
session of the rights of sovereignty over a conquered country, 
and that therefore the efforts of the citizens to assert their in- 
dependence were chargeable with the complicated guilt of 
ingratitude, treason, and rebellion. Influenced by these opin- 
ions, and transported with indignation against the inhabitants, 
they violated rights which are held sacred between indepen- 
dent hostile nations. In almost every district their progress 
Avas marked with blood, and with deeds so atrocious as re- 
flected disgrace on their arms. Nor were these barbarities 


perpetrated in a sudden sally ofrage,orby officers of low rank. 
Major Weyms. of the sixty-third regiment of his Britannic 
majesty's army, deliberately hung Mr. Adam Cusack in Cheraw 
district, who had neither taken parole as a prisoner, nor pro- 
tection as a British subject, though charged with no other 
crime than refusing to transport some British officers over a 
ferry, and shooting at them across a river. The immediate 
authors of executions pleaded no less authority than that of 
Earl Cornwallis, for deliberately shedding the blood of their 
fellow-men. In a few days after the defeat of General Gates, 
his lordship stained his military fame by the following letter, 
addressed to the Commandant of the British garrison at Ninety- 

" I have given orders that all the inhabitants of this pro- 
vince, who have subscribed and have taken part in this revolt, 
should be punished with the greatest rigor; and also those 
who will not turn out, that they may be imprisoned, and their 
whole property taken from them or destroyed. I have like- 
wise ordered, that compensation should be made out of their 
estates to the persons who have been injured or oppressed by 
them. I have ordered in the most positive manner, that every 
militia-man, who has borne arms with us and afterwards joined 
the enemy, shall be immediately hanged. I desire you will 
take the most vigorous measures to punish the rebels in the 
district in which you command, and that you obey in the 
strictest manner the directions I have given in this letter rel- 
ative to the inhabitants of this country. 

(Signed) Cornwallis." 

Similar orders were addressed to the Commanders of differ- 
ent posts, and executed with the same spirit with which they 
were dictated. At or near Camden, Samuel Andrews, Richard 
Tucker, John Miles, Josiah Gayle, Eleazer Smith, with some 
others whose names are unknown, were taken out of gaol and 
hung without any ceremony. Some were indulged with a 
hearing before a court martial, but the evidences against them 
were not examined on oath, and slaves were both permitted 
and encouraged to accuse their masters. Not only at Camden, 
but in other parts of South Carolina, and at Augusta in Geor- 
gia, the same bloody tragedies were acted, and several of the 
inhabitants fell sacrifices to this new mode of warfare. 

The warm zeal of Earl Cornwallis to annex the States of 
America to the British empire, prompted him to measures not 
only derogatory to his character, but inconsistent with the 
claims of humanity. The prisoners on parole had an un- 
doubted right to take arms ; for, by proclamation, after the 
20th of the preceding June, as has'been stated, they were re- 
leased from every engagement to their conquerors. Of those 

CAMPAIGN OP 1780. 211 

it may be affirmed, that they were murdered in cold blood. 
The case of those who had taken British protection is some- 
what different. His lordship could allege, in vindication of 
his severity to them, an appearance of right; but it was of 
that too rigid kind which hardens into wrong. These men 
were under the tie of an oath to support American indepen- 
dence; but had been overcome by the temptation of saving 
their property to make an involuntary submission to the royal 
conquerors. By a combination of circumstances they were 
in such a situation that they could not do otherwise, without 
risking the support of their families. Experience soon taught 
them the inefficacy of these protections. These men naturally 
reasoned thus: "tliat as the contract was first violated on the 
part of the conquerors, it could not be so highly criminal for 
them to recede from it." They had also submitted on the 
idea that they should not be called on to fight against the 
Americans ; but finding themselves compelled to take up arms, 
and under the necessity of violating their engagements either 
to their countrymen or their conquerors, they choose to adhere 
to the former. To treat men thus circumstanced with the 
sanguinary severity of deserters and traitors might be politic, 
but the impartial world must regret that the unavoidable hor- 
rors of war should be aggravated by such deliberate effusions 
of human blood. 

Notwithstanding the decisive superiority of the British arms 
in the summer of 1780, several of the citizens, respectable for 
their numbers, but more so for their weight and influence, 
continued firm to the cause of independence. It was no less 
mortifying to Lord Cornwallis than unfriendly to his future 
schemes, that these remained within the British lines in the 
character of prisoners. Though they were restrained by their 
paroles from doing anything injurious to the interest of his 
Britannic majesty; yet the silent example of men, who were 
revered by their fellow-citizens, had a powerful influence in 
restraining many from exchanging their paroles as prisoners 
for the protection and privileges of British subjects. To re- 
move every bias of this sort, and to enforce a general submis- 
sion to royal government, Lord Cornwallis, soon after his 
victory at Camden, gave orders to send out of the province a 
number of the principal citizens prisoners on parole in Charles- 
town. On the 27th of August Christopher Gadsden, Lieuten- 
ant-Governor of the State, Edward Blake, John Budd, Robert 
Cochran, John Edwards, Thomas Ferguson, George Flagg, 
William Hasel Gibbs, William Hall, Thomas Hall, Thomas 
Hey ward, junior, Isaac Holmes, Richard Hutson, William 
Johnson, Rev. John Lewis, William Livingston, John Love- 
day, Rich'd Lushington, William Massey, Edward McCready, 


Alexander Moultrie, John Mouatt, John Neufville, Edward 
North, Joseph Parker, John Earnest Poyas, David Ramsay, 
Jacob Read, Hugh Rutledge, Edward Rutledge, John Sansurii, 
Thomas Savage, Thomas Singleton, Josiah Smith, James Ham- 
den Thompson, Peter Timothy, John Todd, and Anthony 
Toomer, were taken up early in the morning out of their houses 
and beds by armed parties and brought to the Exchange; from 
whence, when collected together, they were removed on board 
the Sandwich guard-ship, and in a few days transported to St. 
Augustine. The manner in which this order was executed was 
not less painful to the feelings of gentlemen, than the order itself 
was injurious to the rights of prisoners entitled to the benefits of 
a capitulation. Guards were left at their respective houses. 
The private papers of some of them were examined. Reports 
were immediately circulated to their disadvantage, and every 
circumstance managed so as to induce a general belief that 
they were all apprehended for violating their paroles, and for 
concerting a scheme for burning the town and massacreing 
the loyal subjects. On the very first day of their confinement 
they remonstrated to Lieutenant-Colonel Balfour, the Com- 
mandant of Charlestown, asserting their innocence, and chal- 
lenging their accusers to appear face to face with their charges 
against them. 

To this no answer was directly obtained; but a message 
from the Commandant, delivered officially by Major Benson, 
acknowledged that this extraordinary step had been taken 
"from motives of policy." 

The British endeavored to justify this removal by alleging 
the right of the victors to remove prisoners whithersoever they 
pleased, without regarding their convenience. Few such in- 
stances can be produced in the modern history of any civilized 
nation with whom it is an established rule to construe capitu- 
lations, where ambiguous, in favor of the vanquished. The 
conquerors, in their great zeal to make subjects, forgot the 
rights of prisoners. To express his indignation at this ungen- 
erous treatment, Lieutenant-Governor Gadsden refused to 
accept an ofi'ered parole in St. Augustine; and with the greatest 
fortitude bore a close confinement in the castle of that place 
for forty-two weeks, rather than give a second one to a power 
which had plainly violated the engagement contained in the 
first. The other gentlemen, who renewed their paroles in 
St. Augustine, had the liberty of the town ; but were treated 
with indignities unsuitable to their former rank and condition. 
Cut off from all communication with their countrymen, they 
could receive no intelligence of public affairs but through 
British channels. In this forlorn situation, they were informed 
of several decisive battles, which were represented as having 

CAMPAIGN OF 1780. 213 

completely annihilated every prospect of American indepen- 
dence; and they were taught to expect the fate of vanquished 
rebels. They also heard from high authority, that the blood 
of the brave but unfortunate Andrfe would be required at their 
hands. They were told that Lieutenant-Colonel Glazier, Com- 
mandant of the garrison in St. Augustine, had announced his 
fixed resolution instantly to hang up six of them, if the exas- 
perated Americans should execute their threats of putting to 
death Colonel Brown, of the East Florida rangers. To all 
these indignities and dangers they submitted, without an ap- 
plication from a single individual of their number for British 

From the time that the citizens before mentioned were sent 
off from Charlestown, St. Augustine was made use of to frighten 
prisoners to petition for the privileges of subjects. They who 
delayed their submission were repeatedly threater * 

banishment from their families and estates. To convince the 
inhabitants that the conquerors were seriously resolved to 
banish all who refused to become subjects, an additional num- 
ber, who still remained prisoners on parole, was shipped otf on 
the 15th of November following. Their names were as fol- 
lows : Joseph Bee, Richard Beresford, John Berwick, Daniel 
Bordeaux, Benjamin Cudworth, Henry Crouch, John Splatt 
Cripps, Edward Darrell, Daniel DeSaussure, George A. Hall, 
Thomas Grimball, Noble Wimberly Jones, William Lee, Wm. 
Logan, Arthur Middleton, Christopher Peters, Benjamin Pos- 
tell, Samuel Prioleau, Philip Smith, Benjamin Waller, James 
Wakefield, Edward Weyman, Morton Wilkinson. In addition 
to these citizens of South Carolina, most of whom were en- 
titled to the benefits of the capitulation of Charlestown, Gen- 
eral Rutherford and Colonel Isaacs of the State of North 
Carolina, who had been taken near Camden in August, 1780, 
were at the same time shipped off for St. Augustine. The only 
charge exhibited against them as the reason of their exile was 
that " they discovered no disposition to return to their allegiance 
and would, if they could, overturn the British government." 
Lord Cornwallis did not stop here; but being determined to 
use every method to compel the re-establishment of British 
government, as well by rewarding its friends as punishing its 
opposers, his lordship proceeded to the sequestration of all 
estates belonging to the decided friends of America. In the 
execution of this business John Cruden was appointed to take 
possession of the estates of particular persons designated in 
warrants issued by Earl Cornwallis and Lieutenant-Colonel 

... In the year 1778, when the then recent capture of General 
Burgoyne's army, and the alliance with France inspired all 


ranks of men in Carolina with confidence in the final estab- 
lishment of their independence, the Legislature of that State 
gave to all the friends of royal government their free choice; 
of either joining them, or going where they pleased with their 
families and property. In the year 1780, when the British 
arms had the ascendant, the conquerors gave no alternative, 
but either to join them, and to fight against their countrymen 
and consciences, or to be banished under every restriction of 
prisoners of war. Instead of being allowed to carry their estates 
with them, they whose. property made it worth while, were 
stripped of every thing; and all, whether their estates were 
sequestered or not, were deprived of the privileges of recovering 
their debts, and of selling or removing their property without 
the permission of the conquerors. An adherent to indepen- 
dence was now considered as one who courted exile, poverty, 
and ruin. The temptation was too great to be resisted by 
those who were attached to their interest and ease. Numbers 
who formerly professed great zeal in the support of their 
country, and who continued their adherence to the cause of 
America after the surrender of Charlestown, yielded to these 
temptations and became British subjects. To discourage the 
other States from any further attempts in behalf of Carolina, 
an address to Lord Cornwallis was drawn up, in which the 
subscribers " congratulated him for his glorious victory at 
Camden ; and expressed their indignation at Congress for dis- 
tilrbing the citizens of Carolina, who were represented as 
having broken off from the union, and re-united themselves 
to the British empire." Though every method was used to 
obtain signers to this address, yet no more than one hundred 
and sixty-four could be procured. Notwithstanding these 
discouragements, the genius of America rose superior to them 
all. At no time did her sons appear to greater advantage, than 
when they were depressed by successive misfortunes. They 
seemed to gain strength from their losses ; and, instead of 
giving way to the pressure of calamities, to oppose them with 
more determined resolution. 

Hitherto the British arms to the southward have been at- 
tended with almost uninterrupted success. The royal stand- 
ards we have seen overspreading all the country, penetrating 
into every quarter, and triumphing over all' opposition. Their 
defeats at the Hanging Rock and at WiUiams's, in the upper 
parts of South Carolina, made but little impression, on an 
army familiar with victories. Checks indeed they were, but 
nothing more; and the only check they had sustained since 
their landing in the State. The British ministry, by this flat- 
tering posture of affairs, were once more intoxicated with the 
delusive hopes of subjugating America. New plans were 

CAMPAIGN OF 1780. 215 

formed, and great expectations indulged of speedily re-uniting 
the dissevered members of the empire. The rashness of Gen- 
eral. Burgoyne, and the languor of Sir William Howe, were 
assigned as the only causes of that shame and disappoint- 
ment which had already disgraced five successive campaigns. 
It was now asserted with a confidence bordering on presump- 
tion, that such troops as fought at Camden, put under such a 
Commander as Lord Corn wal lis, would soon extirpate rebel- 
lion so effectually as to leave no vestige of it in America. 
The British ministry and army, by an impious confidence in 
their own wisdom and prowess, were duly prepared to give, 
in their approaching downfall, an useful lesson to the world. 

The disaster of the army under General Gates overspread 
at first the face of American affairs with a dismal gloom. But 
the day of prosperity to the United States began, as will appear 
in the sequel, from that moment to dawn. Their prospects 
brightened up, while those of their enemies A^ere obscured by 
disgrace, broken by defeat, and at last covered with ruin. 
Elated with their victory, the conquerors became more inso- 
lent and rapacious, while the real friends of independence, 
thoroughly alarmed at their danger, became resolute and 
determined. We have seen Sumpter penetrating into South 
Carolina, and recommencing a military opposition to British 
government. Soon after that event he was promoted by Gov- 
ernor Rutledge to the rank of Brigadier-General. About the 
same time Marion was promoted to the same rank, and in 
the northeastern extremities of the State successfully prose- 
cuted the same plan. Unfurnished with the means of defence, 
he was obliged to take possession of the saws of the saw- 
mills, and to convert them into horsemen's swords. So much 
was he distressed for ammunition, that he has engaged when 
he had not three rounds to each man of his party. At other 
times he has brought his men into view, though without am- 
munition, that he might make a show of numbers to the 
enemy. For several weeks he had under his command only 
seventy men, all volunteers from the militia. At one time 
hardships and dangers reduced that number to twenty-five; 
yet with this inconsiderable force he secured himself, in the 
midst of surrounding foes. Various methods were attempted 
to draw off his followers. Major Weyms burned scores of 
houses belonging to the inhabitants living on Peedee, Lynch's 
creek, and Black river, who were supposed to do duty with him, 
or to be subservient to his views. This measure had an effect 
contrary to what was expected. Revenge and despair co-op- 
erated with patriotism to make these ruined men keep the 
field. The devouring flames sent on defenceless habitations 
by blind rage and brutal policy, increased not only the zeal 


but the number of his followers. For several months he and 
his party were obliged to sleep in the open air, and to shelter 
themselves in the thick recesses of deep swamps. From 
these retreats he sallied out whenever an opportunity of har- 
assing the enemy or of serving his country presented itself 
This worthy citizen, on every occasion, paid the greatest re- 
gard to private property, and restrained his men from every 
species of plunder. On the whole, he exhibited a rare instance 
of disinterested patriotism, in doing and suffering everything 
subservient to the independence of his country. 

Opposition to British government was not wholly confined 
to the parties commanded by Sumpter and Marion. It was 
at no time altogether extinct in the extremities of the State. 
The inhabitants of that part of South Carolina which is now 
called York district, never were paroled as prisoners; nor did 
they take protection as subjects. From among these people 
Sumpter had recruited a considerable part of his men. After 
his defeat, on the 18th of August, 1780, several of them re- 
paired to that settlement, and kept in small parties for their 
own defence. Some of them also joined Major Davie, an 
enterprising young gentleman who commanded fifty or sixty 
volunteers, who had equipped themselves as dragoons. This 
was the only American corps which at that time had not been 
beaten or dispersed. The disposition to revolt which had 
been excited on the approach of General Gates' army, was 
not extinguished by its defeat. By that check the spirit of 
the people was overawed, but not subdued. The severity 
with which revolters who were taken had been treated, 
induced many others to persevere and to seek safety in 

From the time of the general submission of the inhabitants, 
in the summer of 1780, pains were taken to increase the royal 
force by the co-operation of the yeomanry of the country. 
Commissions in the militia were given by the British com- 
manders to such of the inhabitants as they supposed had 
influence, and were most firmly attached to their interest 
They persuaded the people to einbody, by representing to the 
uninformed, that American aifairs were entirely ruined, and 
that further opposition would only be a prolongation of their 
distresses. They endeavored to reconcile those who had 
families, and were advanced in life, to the bearing of arms, 
by considerations drawn from the necessity of defending their 
property and of keeping tlieir domestics in proper subordi- 
nation. From young men without families more was ex- 
pected. Whilst Lord Cornwallis was restrained from active 
operations by the excessive heats and unhealthy season which 
followed his victory at Camden, Colonel Ferguson, of the 

CAMPAIGN OP 1780. 217 

seventy-first British regiment, had undertaken personally to 
visit the settlements of the disaffected to the American cause, 
and to train their young men for service in the field. With 
these, at a proper season, he was to join the main army and 
co-operate with it in the reduction of North Carolina. This 
corps had been chiefly collected from the remote parts of the 
State, and was induced to continue for some time near to 
the western mountains, with the expectation of intercepting 
Colonel Clark on his retreat from Georgia. Among those who 
joined Colonel Ferguson were several disorderly, licentious per- 
sons, who took the opportunity of the prevailing confusion to 
carry on their usual depredations. As they marched through 
the country, on the pretence of promoting the service of his 
Britanic majesty, they plundered the whig citizens. Violences 
of this kind, frequently repeated, induced many persons to con- 
sult their own safety by fleeing over the mountains. By such 
lively representations of their sufferings as the distressed are 
always ready to give, they communicated an alarm to that hardy 
race of republicans who live to the westward of the Alleghany. 
Hitherto these mountaineers had only heard of war at a dis- 
tance, and had been in peaceable possession of that inde- 
pendence for which their countrymen on the sea-coast were 
contending. Alarmed for their own safety by the near ap- 
proach of Colonel Ferguson, and roused by the violences and 
depredations of his followers, they embodied to check the 
neighboring foe. This was done of their own motion, with- 
out any requisition from the governments of America or the 
officers of the continental army. Being all mounted and 
unincumbered with baggage, their motions were rapid. Each 
man set out with his blanket, knapsack, and gun, in quest of 
Colonel Ferguson in the same manner he was used to pursue 
the wild beasts of the forest. At night the earth afforded 
them a bed and the heavens a covering ; the running stream 
quenched their thirst, while the few cattle, driven in their rear, 
together with the supplies acquired by their guns, procured 
them provision. They soon found the encampment of Colonel 
Ferguson. This was on an eminence of a circular base, 
known by the name of King's Mountain, situated near the 
confines of North and South Carolina. Though Colonel 
Campbell had a nominal command over the whole, their en- 
terprise was conducted without regular military subordina- 
tion, under the direction of Colonels Cleveland, Shelby, Sevier 
and Williams, each of whom respectively led on his own 
men. It being apprehended that Colonel Ferguson was hasten- 
ing his march down the country to join Lord Cornwallis, the 
Americans selected nine hundred and ten of their best men, 
and mounted them on their fleetest horses. With this force 


they came up with Colonel Ferguson on the 7th of October, 
1780. As they approached the royal encampment, it was 
agreed to divide their force. Some ascended the mountain, 
while others went round its base in opposite directions. 
Colonel Cleveland, who led one of the detachments round 
the mountain, in his progress discovered an advanced piquet 
of the royal army. On this occasion he addressed his party 
in the following plain unvarnished language : " My brave fel- 
lows, we have beat the tories and we can beat them. Thev 
are all cowards. If they had the spirit of men, they would 
join with their fellow-citizens in supporting the independence 
of their country. When engaged you are not to wait for the 
word of command from me. I will show you by ray example 
how to fight I can undertake no more. Every man must 
consider himself as an officer, and act from his own judgment. 
Fire as quick as you can, and stand your ground as long as 
you can. When you can do no better, get behind trees or re- 
treat, but I beg of you not to run quite off. If we are re- 
pulsed, let us make a point to return and renew the fight. 
Perhaps we may have better luck in the second attempt than 
the first. If any of you are afraid, such have leave to retire, 
and they are requested immediately to take themselves off," 
A firing commenced. Some of the Americans were on horse- 
back, others on foot. Some behind trees, and others exposed. 
None were under the restraints of military discipline, but all 
were animated with the enthusiasm of liberty. The piquet 
soon gave way, and were pursued as they retired up the 
mountain to the main body. Colonel Ferguson, with the 
greatest bravery, ordered his men to charge. The Americans 
commanded by Colonel Cleveland followed his advice, and 
having fired as long as they could with safety, they retired 
from the approaching bayonet. They had scarcely given way 
when the other detachment, commanded by Colonel Shelby, 
having completed the circuit of the mountain, opportunely 
arrived, and from an unexpected quarter poured in a well 
directed fire. Colonel Ferguson desisted from the pursuit, 
and engaged with his new adversaries. The British bayonet 
was again successful, and caused them also to fall back. By 
"^j^f ^^'^ P'^^'^y commanded by Colonel Campbell had 
ascended the mountain, and renewed the attack from that 
eminence. Colonel Ferguson, whose conduct was equal to 
nis courage, presented a new front, and was again successful, 
mpnMV I'^'^'^'u"''^^^? unavailing. At this moment the 
mfpst nf th!f " '^^ '''''"'^' "o !««« obedient to the second re- 
thev wre to rT^""^""" ^^ >-eturning to their posts than 

etreat had ralhed /'^'" ^'''^"""^ themselves by a timely 
retreat, had rallied and renewed their fire. As often as one 

CAMPAIGN OF 1780. 219 

of the American parties was driven back, another returned to 
their station. Resistance on the part of Colonel Ferguson was 
in vain, but his unconquerable spirit refused to surrender. 
After having repulsed a succession of adversaries, pouring in 
their fire from new directions, this distinguished officer re- 
ceived a mortal wound. No chance of escape being left, and 
all prospect of successful resistance being at an end, the second 
in command sued for quarters. The killed, wounded and 
taken, exceeded eleven hundred, of which nearly one hundred 
were regulars. The assailants had the honor of reducing a 
number superior to their own. The Americans lost compara- 
tively few, but in that number was that distinguished militia 
officer, Colonel Williams. Ten of these men who had surren- 
dered were hanged by their conquerors. They were provoked 
to this measure by the severity of the British, who had lately 
hanged a greater number of Americans at Camden, Ninety- 
Six and Augusta. They also alleged that the men who suffered 
were guilty of crimes for which their lives were forfeited by 
the laws of the land. 

This unexpected advantage gave new spirits to the de- 
sponding Americans ; and, in a great degree, frustrated a well 
concerted scheme for strengthening the British army by the co- 
operation of the inhabitants who were disaffected to the cause 
of America. 

It was scarcely possible for any event to have happened, in 
the present juncture of affairs, more unfavorable to the views 
of Lord Corwallis than this reverse of fortune. The fall of 
Colonel Ferguson, who possessed superior talents as a partizan, 
was no small loss to the royal cause. In addition to the ac- 
complishments of an excellent officer, he was a most exact 
marksmen ; and had brought the art of rifle shooting to an un- 
common degree of perfection. The total route of the royalists, 
who had joined Colonel Ferguson, operated as a check on 
their future exertions. The same timid caution which made 
them averse from joining their countrymen, in opposing the 
claims of Great Britain, restrained them from risking any 
more in support of the royal cause. From this time forward 
many of them waited events and reserved themselves till the 
British army, by their own unassisted efforts, should gain a de- 
cided superiority. 

In a few weeks after the general action near Camden, on the 
16th of August, 1780, Lord Cornwallis left a small force in 
that village and marched with the main army to Charlotte. 
Whilst they lay there. General Sumner and General Davidson, 
with a considerable body of North Carolina militia, took post 
in the vicinity and annoyed their detachments. Major Davie, 
whose corps was greatly increased by staunch volunteers from 


the lower country, was particularly successful in intercepting 
their foraging parties and convoys. Ritlemen frequently pene- 
trated near the British camp, and from behind trees took care 
to make sure of their object; so that the late conquerors found 
their situation verj,' uneasy, being exposed to unseen danger 
if they attempted to make an excursion of only a few hun- 
dred yards from their encampment. The defeat of Colonel 
Ferguson, added to these circumstances, gave a serious alarm 
to Lord Cornwallis; and made him,Avhile at Charlotte, appre- 
hensive for his safety. He therefore retreated, and fixed his 
next position at Winnsborough. As he retired, the militia 
took several wagons loaded with stores, and single men often 
rode up within gun-shot of his army, discharged their pieces, 
and made their escape. 

The panic occasioned by the reduction of Charlestown, and 
the defeat of General Gates, began to wear ofi". The defeat 
of Colonel Ferguson, and the consequent retreat of Lord 
Cornwallis from Charlotte to Winnsborough, encouraged the 
American militia to repair to the camps of their respective 
commanders. The necessity of the times induced them to 
submit to the stricter discipline of regular soldiers. 

Early in October, Gates detached General Morgan from 
Hillsborough, with 300 Maryland and Delaware troops with 
80 dragoons, to aid the exertions of the whig citizens of Meck- 
lenburgh and Rowan counties. In an excursion from this de- 
tached position Lieutenant-Colonel Washington penetrated 
with a small force to the vicinity of Camden, and on the 4th of 
December 17S0, appeared before Col. Rugeley's. This gentle- 
man having taken a com mission in the British militia, had made 
a stockade-fort round his house in which he had collected 112 
of the men under his command. The appearance of the force, 
commanded by Washington, produced an immediate surrender 
of this whole party. A pine log enforced the propriety and 
necessity of their speedy unresisting submission. This harm- 
less timber, elevated a few feet from the surface of the 
earth by its branches which stuck in the ground, was moulded 
by the imagination of the garrison into artillery, completely 
equipped with all the apparatus of death. 

Sumpter, soon after the dispersion of his force on the 18th 
of August 17S0, collected a corps of volunteers. About thirty 
of his party re-joined him immediately after that event. In 
three days more one hundred of the whig citizens in the vi- 
cinity,on his requisition, rendezvoused at Sugar creek and put 
themselves under his command. With these and other occa- 
sional reinforcements, though for three months there was no 
continental army in the State, he constantly kept the field in 
support of American independence. He varied his position 

CAMPAIGN OF 1780. 221 

from time to time about Enoree, Broad and Tyger rivers, and 
had frequent s}iirmishes with his adversaries. Having mounted 
his followers, he infested the British with frequent incursions, 
beat up their quarters, intercepted their convoys, and so har- 
assed them with successive alarms, that their movements could 
not be made but with caution and difficulty. On the 12th of 
November, 1780, he was attacked at Broad river by Major 
Weyras, commanding a corps of infantry and dragoons. In 
this action the British were defeated, and their commanding 
officer taken prisoner. Though Major Weyms had personally 
superintended the execution of Mr. Adam Cusack, after ordering 
him to be hung ; and though in his pocket was found a mem- 
orandum of several houses burned by his command, yet he 
received every indulgence from his conquerors. On the twen- 
tieth of the same month General Sumpter was attacked at 
Black Stocks, near Tyger river, by Lieutenant-Colonel Tarle- 
ton at the head of a considerable party. The action was severe 
and obstinate. The killed and wounded of the British was con- 
siderable. Among the former were Maj. Money, Lieuts. Gibson 
and Cope. The Americans lost very few, but General Sumpter 
received a wound which, for several months, interrupted his gal- 
lant enterprises in behalf of the State. His zeal and activity in 
animating the American militia when they were discouraged by 
repeated defeats, and the bravery and good conduct he dis- 
played in sundry attacks on the British detachments procured 
him the applause of his countrymen and the thanks of Con- 

The continental army which had been collected at Hillsbor- 
ough, after their dispersion on the 16th of August, moved 
down to Charlotte in the latter end of the year 1780. Congress 
authorized General Washington to appoint an officer to take 
the command in the southern district. He nominated Major- 
General Greene to this important trust. This illustrious offi- 
cer was universally acknowledged to possess great military 
talents, particularly a penetrating judgment, and a decisive 
enterprising spirit. Great were the difficulties he had to en- 
counter. The principal part of his standing force consisted of 
the few continentals wtio had escaped from the defeat near Cam- 
den on the 16th of August, 1780. Six days after Greene took the 
command, the returns of the southern army were nine hun- 
dred and seventy continentals, and one thousand and thirteen 
militia. The continentals were without pay, and almost with- 
out clothing. All sources of supply from Charlestown were 
shut up, and no imported article could be obtained but from a 
distance of near two hundred miles. Though the American 
force was small, yet the procuring of provisions for its support 
was a matter of the greatest difficulty. The paper currency 

222 HisTORr or the revolution. 

was so depreciated, that it was wholly unequal to the purchase 
of necessaries for the suffering soldiers. Real money could 
not be procured. Though Greene was authorized to dispose 
of a few bills, drawn by Congress on their minister at the 
court of France, on a credit given him by that court, yet, such was 
the situation of the country, that very little relief could be ob- 
tained from this quarter; and the greatest part of the bills 
were returned unsold. The only resource left for supplying 
the American army, was by impressment. The country had 
been so completely ravaged, that all which could be obtained 
even in that way, in the vicinity of the army, was far short 
of a sufficiency. To supply the army, and please the inhabi- 
tants, was equally necessary. To seize upon their property 
and preserve their kind affections was a most delicate point, and 
yet of the utmost moment, as it furnished the army with 
provisions without impairing the disposition of the inhab- 
itants to co-operate with the continental troops in recovering 
the country. This grand object called for the united efforts of 
both. That the business of impressment might be conducted 
in the least offensive manner it was transferred from the mili- 
tary to the civil officers of the State. This was not only more 
effectual, but it also prevented two other evils of dangerous 
consequence — the corruption of the discipline of the army — 
and the misapplication of property impressed for the public 

With an inconsiderable army, miserably provided. General 
Greene took the field against a superior British regular force, 
which had marched in triumph two hundred miles from the 
sea-coast ; and was flushed with successive victories through 
a whole campaign. To face an host of difficulties the Ameri- 
can General had the justice of his cause, his own valor and 
good conduct, a very respectable cavalry, and the Maryland 
and Delaware continentals who had served upwards of four 
years ; and who, for their numbers, were equal to any troops 
in the world. 

Many of the inhabitants, who, from necessity, had sub- 
mitted to the British government most cordially wished him 
good speed ; but the unsuccessful attempt of Gates to recover 
the country made the cautious and timid, for some time, very 
slow in repairing to the standard of liberty. 

Soon after Greene took the command, he divided his force 
and sent a detachment, under General Morgan, to the western 
extremities of South Carolina; and marched on the twentieth 
of December with the main body to Hicks' Creek, on the 
north side of the Peedee, opposite to Cheraw Hill. This di- 
vision of the little American army into two parts, so remote 
from each other that they could not co-operate, was risking 

CAMPAIGN OF 1781. 223 

much ; but the necessity of the case gave no ahernative. 
The continental army was too inconsiderable to make suc- 
cessful opposition to the superior numbers of Lord Corn- 
wallis, without the most powerful co-operation of the militia 
of the country. To give them an opportunity of embodying 
it was necessary to cover both extremities of the State. 


Campaign of 1781. 

After the general submission of the militia, in the year 1780, 
a revolution took place highly favorable to the interests of 
America. The residence of the British army, instead of in- 
creasing the real friends to royal government, diminished 
their number and added new vigor to the opposite party. In 
the district of Ninety-Six moderate measures were at first 
adopted by the British commanders, but the effects of this 
were frustrated by the royalists. A great part of those who 
called themselves the King's friends had been at all times a 
banditti, to whom rapine and violence were familiar. On the 
restoration of royal government these men preferred their 
claim to its particular notice. The conquerors were so far 
imposed on by them, that they promoted some of them who 
were of the most infamous characters. Men of such base 
minds and mercenary principles, regardless of the capitula- 
tion, gratified their private resentments and their rage for 
plunder to the great distress of the new made subjects, and 
the greater injury of the royal interest. Violences of this kind 
made some men break their engagements to the British, and 
join the Americans. Their revolt occasioned suspicions to 
the prejudice of others who had no intention of following 
their example. Fears, jealousies and distrust, haunted the 
minds of the conquerors. All confidence was at an end. 
Severe measures were next tried, but with a worse effect. 
Lieutenant-Colonel Balfour, an haughty and imperious officer 
who commanded in that district, was more calculated, by his 
insolence and overbearing conduct to alienate the inhabitants 
from a government already beloved, than to reconcile them to 
one which was generally disliked. By an unwarrantable 
stretch of his authority he issued a proclamation by which it 
was declared, "that every man who was not in his house by 
a certain day should be subject to a military execution.'' 
The British had a post in Ninety-Six for thirteen months, 
during which time the country was filled with rapine, vio- 
lence, and murder. Applications were made daily for redress, 
yet in that whole period there was not a single instance 
wherein punishment was inflicted either on the soldiery or 


tories. The people soon found that there was no security for 
their hves, liberties, or property, under the military goveru- 
ment of British officers, which subjected them to the depreda- 
tions of a malicious mercenary banditti; falsely calling 
themselves the friends of royal government. The peaceable 
citizens were reduced to that uncommon distress, in which 
they had more to fear from oppression than resistance ; they 
therefore most ardently wished for the appearance of an 
American force. Under these favorable circumstances Greene 
detached Morgan to take a position in the western extremity 
of the State. On his arrival the latter dispatched Lieutenant- 
Colonel Washington, with his own regiment and two hun- 
dred militia-horse, to attack a body of tories who were plun- 
dering the whig inhabitants. Washington came up with 
them near Hammond's store-house, and charged them; on 
on which they all fled Without making any resistance. Many 
were killed or wounded, and about forty taken prisoners. 

On the next day Washington detached Cornet James Simons, 
with a command of eleven regulars and twenty-five militia, 
to pursue the fugitives and to surprise a fort a few miles distant, 
in which General Cunningham commanded about one hun- 
dred and fifty British militia. This fort was strongly pic- 
queted in every direction ; and, besides plunder taken from 
the whig inhabitants, was well stored with forage, grain, and 
provisions for the use of the British army. As soon as the 
Americans were discovered. General Cunningham and all his 
men abandoned the fort. Cornet Simons stationed his de- 
tachment, and, advancing with a flag, demanded their sur- 
render. Cunningham requested time to consult his officers, 
and five minutes were given him for that purpose. In that 
short space the whole party of tories ran off', and dispersed 
themselves through the woods. Simons, after destroying the 
fort and all the provisions in it which he could not carry 
away, rejoined Washington without any molestation. 

These successes, the appearance of an American army, a 
sincere attachment to the cause of independence, and the im- 
politic conduct of the British, induced several persons to re- 
sume their arms and to act in concert with the detachments 
of continentals. Lord Cornwallis wished to drive Morgan 
from this station, and to deter the inhabitants from joining 
him. Lieutenant-Colonel Tarleton, at the head of a thousand 
regulars, was ordered to execute this business. The British 
had two field-pieces, and the superiority of numbers in the 
proportion of five to four, and particularly of cavalry in the 
proportion of three to one. Besides this inequality of force, 
two-thirds of the troops under Morgan were militia. With 
these fair prospects of success, Tarleton, on the 17th of January 

CAMPAIGN OF 1781. 225 

1781, engaged Morgan with the expectation of driving him 
out of the country. The latter drew up his men in two lines. 
The whole of the southern militia, with one hundred and 
ninety from North Carolina, were put under the command of 
Colonel Pickens. These formed the first line, and were ad- 
vanced a few hundred yards before the second, with orders to 
form on the right of the second when forced to retire. The 
second line consisted of the light-infantry, under Lieutenant- 
Colonel Howard, and a small corps of Virginia militia rifle- 
men. Lieutenant-Colonel Washington with his cavalry and 
forty-five militia-men, mounted and equipped with swords, 
were drawn up at some distance in the rear of the whole. 
The Americans were formed before the British appeared in 
sight. Tarleton halted, and formed his men, when at the dis- 
tance of about two hundred and fifty yards from the front line 
of Morgan's detachment. As soon as the British had formed 
they began to advance with a shout, and poured in an inces- 
sant fire of musketry. Colonel Pickens directed the militia 
under his command not to fire till the British were within 
forty or fifty yards. This order, though executed with great 
firmness and success, was not sufficient to repel the advancing 
foe. The American militia were obliged to retire, but were 
soon rallied by their officers. The British advanced rapidly 
and engaged the second line which, after a most obstinate 
conflict, was compelled to retreat to the cavalry. In this 
crisis of the battle, Washington made a successful charge upon 
Tarleton who was cutting down the militia. Lieutenant 
Colonel Howard, almost at the same moment, rallied the con- 
tinental troops and charged with fixed bayonets. The exam- 
ple was instantly followed by the militia. Nothing could 
exceed the astonishment and confusion of the British, occa- 
sioned by these unexpected charges. Their advance fell back 
upon their rear, and communicated a panic to the whole. In 
this moment of confusion Howard called to them " to lay 
down their arms," and promised them good quarters. Up- 
wards of five hundred accepted the ofi'er, and surrendered. 
The first battalion of the seventy-first regiment, and two 
British light infantry companies laid down their arms to the 
American militia. Previous to this general surrender, three 
hundred of the corps, commanded by Tarleton, had been 
killed, wounded or taken. Eight hundred stand of arms, two 
field-pieces, and thirty-five baggage-wagons also fell into the 
hands of the Americans. Washington pursued the British 
cavalry for several miles, but a great part of them escaped. 
The Americans had only twelve men killed, and sixty 
wounded. General Morgan, whose great abilities were dis- 
covered by the judicious disposition of his force, and whose 


activity was conspicuous through every part of the action, 
obtained the universal applause of his countrymen. And 
there never was a commander better supported than he was 
by the officers and men of his detachment. The glory and 
importance of this action resounded from one end of the con- 
tinent to the other. It re-animated the desponding friends of 
America, and seemed to be like a resurrection from the dead 
to the southern States. 

Morgan's good conduct, on this memorable day, was honored 
by Congress with a gold medal. That illustrious assembly, on 
this occasion, presented also a medal of silver to Lieutenant- 
Colonel Washington, another to Lieutenant-Colonel Howard, 
a sword to Colonel Pickens, a brevet majority to Edward Giles, 
the General's Aid-de-camp, and a Captaincy to Baron Glasback, 
who had lately joined the light infantry as a volunteer. The 
British legion, hitherto triumphant in a variety of skirmishes, 
on this occasion lost their laurels, though they were supported 
by the Seventh regiment, one battalion of the Seventy-first, 
and two companies of light infantry. Lieutenant-Colonel 
Tarleton had hitherto acquired distinguished reputation, but 
he was greatly indebted for his military fame to good fortune 
and accident. In all his previous engagements he either had 
the advantage of surprising an incautious enemy, of attacking 
them when panic-struck after recent defeats, or of being op- 
posed to undisciplined militia. He had gathered no laurels by 
hard fighting against an equal force. His repulse on this 
occasion did more essential injury to the British interest than 
was compensated by all his victories. 

Tarleton's defeat was the first link in a grand chain of causes 
which finally drew down ruin, both in North and South Caro- 
lina, on the royal interest. The series of victories which had 
followed the British arms in the first nine months of the year 
1780, had been considered by the sanguine royalists as decisive 
with respect to the most southern colonies, and had led to the 
formation of extensive plans for the year 1781. These were 
defensive with respect to South Carolina and Georgia, which 
were considered as conquered countries, but otFensive against 
North Carolina and Virginia. To favor the subjugation of these 
two latter States, the British commanders stationed troops in 
both. The tories under the protection of the royal army were 
encouraged to rise simultaneously. With their aid, and that of 
his army, Lord Cornwallis expected to destroy the American 
forces commanded by General Greene, or at least to drive 
them out of the country. As his lordship advanced from 
south to north, it was expected the tories, with a portion of 
regulars, would keep all quiet in his rear. North Carolina 
was scarcely considered in any other light than as the road to 

CAMPAIGN OF 1781. 227 

Virginia. A junction with the royal forces stationed in the 
last named State, in the froat of Lord Cornwallis, was ex- 
pected at so early a day, as to give time for prosecuting fur- 
ther operations against Maryland and Pennsylvania. The 
expectations of some went so far as to count upon a junction 
with the royal army in New York, and the subjugation of 
every State to the southward of Hudson's river, before the 
close of the campaign. The year 1781 commenced with the 
prospect of accomplishing most, if not all of these objects. 
These sanguine hopes were founded on the reduction of 
Savannah and Charlestown, the subjugation of Georgia and 
South Carolina — the route of General Gates' army — the fail- 
ure of the American paper currency, the general distress of 
the country, and the inability of Congress to carry on the war, 
from the want of the means necessary for that purpose. In 
this distressed state of American affairs, success, little short of 
a termination of the war in favor of Great Britain, was ex- 
pected from a vigorous campaign, conducted with energy and 
advancing from south to north. The defeat of Ferguson at 
King's mountain, in October, 1780, and of Tarleton at the 
Cow Pens, in January, 1781, precipitated the projected system 
of operations. To recover the prisoners taken at the Cow 
Pens, the royal army was instantly put in motion. A mili- 
tary race commenced between the pursuing British and the 
fleeing Americans. North Carolina was therefore prematurely 
invaded before the tories were prepared for joining the royal- 
ists. Rising without order or system, they were separately 
subdued. General Greene, by rapid movements, saved his 
prisoners, but was compelled to retreat into Virginia. By avoid- 
ing engagements he preserved his army till he was joined by 
so many of his countrymen as enabled him to recross into 
North Carolina, and to risk a general action at Guilford. This, 
though called a victory by the British, operated against them 
like a defeat. Lord Cornwallis was reduced to the alternative 
of retracing his footsteps to South Carolina, or advancing to 
Virginia, while the country behind him was left open to the 
enterprising General Greene, at the head of a respectable force. 
The two armies, one of which for some weeks had been chas- 
ing the other, now turned back to back. Lord Cornwallis 
advanced northwardly, and seated himself in York Town, 
Virginia, where, in October following, he was reduced to the 
necessity of surrendering his whole army prisoners of war; 
Greene, southwardly to Carolina, and in the course of the 
campaign, recovered the country from its late conquerors. 
This was facilitated by the previous enterpises of Generals 
Sumpter and Marion. These distinguished partisans, though 
surrounded with enemies, kept the field and animated the 


whig inhabitants of Sonth Carolina to deeds of valor, while 
the two main armies were in North Carolina and Virginia. 
Though the continental army was driven over Dan river, 
Marion and Sumpter did not despair of the commonwealth. 
Having mounted their followers, their motions were rapid 
and their attacks unexpected. With their light troops they 
intercepted the British convoys of provisions, infested their 
outposts, beat up their quarters, and harassed their detach- 
ments with such frequent alarms, that they were obliged to be 
always on their guard. In the western extremity of the State, 
Sumpter was powerfully supported by Colonels Niel, Lacey, 
Hill, Winn, Bratton, Brandon, and others, each of whom held 
militia commissions, and had many friends. In the north- 
eartern extremity, Marion received, in like manner, great as- 
sistance from the active exertions of Colonels Peter Horry and 
Hugh Horry, Lieutenant-Colonel John Baxter, Colonel James 
Postell, Major John Postell, and Major John James. 

The inhabitants, either as affection or vicinity induced them, 
arranged themselves under some of these militia officers, and 
performed many gallant enterprises.* 


Marion's Brigade. 

Marion and his brigade were so distinguished, and at the 
same time so detached in their operations, as to merit and 
require particular notice. 

General Francis Marion was born atWinyaw, in 1733. His 
grandfather was a native of Languedoc, and one of the many 
Protestants who fled from France to Carolina to avoid perse- 
cution on the account of religion. He left thirteen children, 
the eldest of whom was the father of the general. Francis 
Marion, when only sixteen years of age, made choice of a 
seafaring life. On his first voyage to the West Indies he was 
shipwrecked. The crew, consisting of six persons, took to 
the open boat, without water or provisions, except a dog who 
jumped into the boat from the sinking vessel. They were six 
days in the boat before they made land, having nothing to eat 
in that time but the dog, whom they devoured raw. Two of 
the crew perished. Francis Marion, with three others, reached 

*The author would gladly have recorded these events minutely, if the par- 
ticulars were either known by him or had been communicated to him. The 
information received of the corps commanded by Sumpter is very general, and 
of course deficient, though exertions were made to procure it in detail. He has 
been more successful in his applications to the friends of the deceased General 
Marion, and with gratitude acknowledges the obligations he is under to Captain 
John Palmer, and to the Honorable William James, Esq., for interesting informa- 
tion respecting that distinguished officer and his brigade. 

Marion's brigade. 229 

land. This disaster, and the entreaties of his mother, induced 
him to quit the sea. In Littleton's expedition against the In- 
dians in 1759, he went as a volunteer in his brother's militia 
troop of horse. In Grant's expetition to the Indian country 
in 1761, he served as a lieutenant under Captain William 
Moultrie. On the formation of a regular army in 1775, to 
defend his native province against Great Britain, he was ap- 
pointed a captain in the Second South Carolina regiment, and 
had gradually risen to the rank of colonel before Charlestown 
fell. Fortunately for his country, he had fractured his leg 
and retired from the garrison, which prevented his being 
made a prisoner of war. After the surrender, he retreated to 
North Carolina. On the approach of General Gates he ad- 
vanced with a small party through the country towards the 
Santee. On his arrival there he found a number of his coun- 
trymen ready and willing to put themselves under his com- 
mand, to which he had been appointed by General Gates. 
This corps afterwards acquired the name of Marion's Bri- 
gade. Its origin was as singular as its exploits were honor- 

In the month of June, 1780, a British captain named 
Ardesoif, arrived at Georgetown and published a proclama- 
tion, inviting the people to come in, swear allegiance to King 
George, and take protection. Many of the inhabitants of 
Georgetown submitted. But there remained a portion of that 
district stretching from the Santee to the Peedee, containing 
the whole of the present Williamsburg and part of Marion 
district, to which the British arms had not penetrated. The 
inhabitants of it were generally of Irish extraction, and very 
little disposed to submission. At this crisis there was a meet- 
ing of this people to deliberate on their situation. Major 
John James, who had heretofore commanded them in the 
field and represented them in the State Legislature, was se- 
lected as the person who should go down to Captain Ardesoif 
and know from him upon what terms they would be allowed 
to submit. Accordingly he proceeded to Georgetown in the 
plain garb of a country planter, and was introduced to the 
Captain at his lodgings. 

After narrating the nature of his mission, the Captain sur- 
prised that such an embassy should be sent to him, answered 
"that their submission must be unconditional.'' To an in- 
quiry, " whether they would be allowed to stay at home upon 
their plantations in peace and quiet," he replied, " though you 
have rebelled against his majesty he offers you a free pardon, 
of which you were undeserving, for you ought all to have 
been hanged. As he offers you a free pardon you must take 
up arms in support of his cause." To Major James suggest- 


ing " that the people he came to represent would not submit 
on such terms," the Captain, irritated at his republican lan- 
guage, particularly at the word "represent," replied, "you 
damned rebel ! if you speak in such language, I will imme- 
diately order you to be hanged up to the yard arm." Major 
James perceiving what turn matters were likely to take, and 
not brooking this harsh language, suddenly seized the chair 
on which he was seated, brandished it in the face of the 
Captain, made his way good through the back door of the 
house, mounted his horse and made his escape into the coun- 
try. This circumstance which appears now so trivial, gave 
rise to Marion's brigade. When the whole adventure was 
related at a meeting of the inhabitants of Williamsburg, it 
was unanimously determined that they would again take up 
arms in defence of their country and not against it Major 
James was desired to command them as heretofore, and they 
arranged themselves under their revolutionary Captains, Wil- 
liam M'Cottry, Henry Movvzon and John James, junior. 

The small band thus resolved on further resistance was 
about two hundred men. Shortly after. Colonel Hugh Giles 
joined them with two companies, Thornly's and Wither- 
spoon's. On this accession of force a consultation was held, 
and it was agreed to dispatch a messenger to General Gates, 
who about this time had arrived on the confines of the State, 
requesting him to send them a Commander. Shortly after 
these events, Colonel Tarleton crossed the Santee at Lenud's 
ferry, and hearing of the late proceedings in Williamsburg, 
approached at the head of some cavalry to surprise the party 
of Major James ; but Captain M'Cottry, as soon as he received 
notice of his movements, marched his company of fifty men 
to give him battle. Tarleton was posted at King's Tree 
bridge, on Black river, and M'Cottry approached him at mid- 
night; but by means of the wife of the only loyalist in that 
part of the country, Tarleton gained intelligence of M'Cottry's 
movements, and marched away a few hours before the latter 
arrived. M'Cottry pursued him, but without effect 

In this route Tarleton burnt the house of Captain Mowzon 
and took Mr. James Bradley* prisoner. 

*This gentleman was taken prisoner by stratagem. Colonel Tarleton came to 
his house and passed himself for Colonel Washington of the Ameriuan army. 
Bradley made much of his guest, and without suspicion freely communicated to 
him the plans and views of himself and other Carolinians for co-operating with 
their counlryjnen against the British. When the interview and its hospitalities 
were ended, Tarleton requested Bradley to accompany him as a guide to a neigh- 
boring place. This service was cheerfully performed On their arrival, Tarleton's 
party appeared in full view and took charge of Bradley as a prisoner. The host 
thus taken by order of his late guest was sent to Camden jail, and there confined 
in irons. He was freiiuently carted to the gallows to witness the execution of his 
countrymen as rebels, and was told to prepare for a similar fate as his time was 

Marion's brigade. 231 

In the meantime Lieutenant-Colonel Hugh Horry arrived 
from Georgetown with a small party and took command of 
the force already raised by Major James, and on all occasions 
very much animated the men by his gallantry and persever- 
ing patriotism. The messenger, however, had been dis- 
patched to Gates, and on the first or second of August, Gen- 
eral Francis Marion arrived to the great joy of all the friends 
of America, He was accompanied by Colonel Peter Horry, 
Major John Vanderhorst, Captains Lewis Ogier and James 
Thems, and Captain John Milton, of Georgia. In a few days 
after taking the command, General Marion led his men 
across the Peedee at Post's ferry to disperse a large party of 
tories commanded by Major Gainey, collected between great 
and little Peedee. He surprised them in their camp ; killed 
one of their captains and several privates. Two of his own 
party were wounded. Major James was detached at the head 
of a volunteer troop of horse to attack their horse. He came 
up with them, charged and drove them into little Peedee 
swamp. Marion returned to Posts's ferry and threw up a 
redoubt on the east bank of Peedee to awe the tories, still nu- 
merous in that neighborhood. While thus employed he 
heard of the defeat of Gates, at Camden, August 16th, 1780. 
Without communicating the intelligence, he immediately 
marched for Nelson's ferry on the Santee, in the hope of 
intercepting some of the prisoners on their way to Charles- 
town. Near Nelson's he was informed of a party on their 
way down, and found by his scouts that the British had 
stopped at the house on the main road on the east side of 
Santee. The General waited till near daylight next morning 
and then divided his men into two divisions. A small party- 
under Colonel Hugh Horry* was directed to obtain possession 
of the road at the entrance of the swamp, and the main body 
led by himself was by a circuitous route to attack the British 
in the rear. Colonel Horry in taking his position, had ad- 
vanced in the dark too near to a sentinel who fired upon 
him. In a moment he with his little party rushed up to the 
house, found the British arms piled before the door and seized 

next. On such occasions, and when interrogated at courts-martial, he made no 
other reply than that " I am ready and willing to die in the cause of my country ; 
but remember, if I am hanged, I have many friends in General Marion's brigade, 
and my death will occasion a severe retaliation." Either awed by his virtues or 
apprehensive of the consequences, his captors did not execute their threats. His 
life was spared, but he was kept in irons as long as the British had possession of 
the upper country. He bore the marks of these rugged instruments of confine- 
ment till the day of his death, and would occasionally show thera to his young 
friends, with a request "that if the good of their country required the sacriiice, 
they would suffer imprisonment and death in its cause." 

*This gallant officer was the bosom friend of General Marion. Wherever the 
latter was personally engaged in action, the former was to be seen at his side. 


upon them. Thus by a party of sixteen American militia 
was a British guard of thirty-two men taken, and one hun- 
dred and fifty prisoners released. Colonel Horry had one man 
wounded. However, the news of the defeat of Gates, which 
now became public, damped all joy for the complete success 
of this well conducted attack. On the same day General 
Marion marched back for his old position on the Peedee. 
On the way many of his militia, and, with the exception of 
two, the whole of the regulars released from the enemy, de- 
serted. But by the exertions of the General and his officers, 
the spirits of the drooping began to revive. About the 14th 
of September, 1780, when Marion had under his command 
only 150 men, he heard of the approach of Major Weyms, 
from the King's Tree, at the head of a British regiment and 
Harrison's regiment of tories. Major James was instantly 
dispatched at the head of a party of volunteers to reconnoitre, 
and with orders to count the enemy. On his return a council 
of war was called. The British force was reported to be 
double that of Marion's. Gainey's party of tories in the rear 
had always been estimated at 500 men. Under these dis- 
couraging circumstances the line of march was directed back 
towards Lynch's creek. This was a most trying occasion. 
Men were called upon to leave their property and their fam- 
ilies at the discretion of an irritated relentless enemy. About 
half of Marion's party left him ; Colonels Peter and Hugh 
Horry, Colonels John Erwin and John Baxter, Major John 
Vanderhorst, Major John James, Major Benson, and about 
sixty others continued with their General. Captain James, 
with ten chosen men, was left to succor the distressed and to 
convey intelligence.* The next morning Marion arrived at 
his redoubt; and at sunset the same evening turned towards 
North Carolina, and soon reached the eastern bank of Drown- 
ing creek in that State. Major James obtained leave to return 
at the head of a few volunteers ; and General Marion con- 
tinued on to the White marsh, near the source of the Wacca- 
maw. In a little time the Major returned with intelligence of 
the depredations and house burnings committed by Weyms. 
Many of Marion's party were reduced from easy circum- 
stances to poverty. 

After a few days more of repose, the General returned by 
forced marches towards South Carolina. When near to Lynch's 
creek he was informed that a party of tories, much more nu- 
merous than his own, lay at Black Mingo, fifteen miles below. 
Every voice was for the General to lead on his men to an at- 
tack ; and they were gratified. 

*He continued in the vicinity of the British encampments and to fire upon 
stragglers from it as long as his powder and ball lasted. 


The tories lay at Shepherd's ferry on the south side of that 
creek. To approach them Marion was ohliged to cross the 
creek at a bridge one mile above the ferry. As soon as the 
front files of his advance had struck the bridge, with their 
horses' feet, an alarm gun was fired by the enemy and they 
were advantageously posted to receive him. A sharp conflict 
ensued. In an interval of platoons Marion was heard to call 
out, " advance cavalry and charge on the left." Instantly the 
tories broke and ran for Black Mingo swamp. The parties 
had been engaged for a considerable time so near to each 
other that the wads of their gims struck on each side, and 
both fired balls and buckshot. Neither had bayonets, or they 
would have been used. Captain Logan, and one private of 
Marion's party were killed ; but of those engaged, nearly one- 
half were wounded. Two gallant oflicers. Captain Mowzon 
and his Lieutenant Joseph Scott, were rendered unfit for 
further service. 

The tories had five killed, and a considerable number 
wounded. Several of these had lately been companions in 
arms with Marion's party, but from mistaken views had 
changed sides. The General without delay marched into 
Williamsburg. In a short time his party was four hundred 

Thus re-inforced the General proceeded up, Lynch's creek, 
to chastise the tories who had assisted Weyms. On his march 
he obtained information that Colonel Tynes was collecting a 
large body of tories in the fork of Black river, distant about 
thirty miles. The General instantly proceeded towards them ; 
crossing the north branch of Black river, he came up with 
Tynes — surprised and completely defeated him without the 
loss of a man. When Marion approached, the first party of 
tories was playing cards; and Captain Gaskens one of the 
plundering companions of Weyms, was killed with a card in 
his hand. Several other tories were killed and wounded. In 
all these marches Marion and his men lay in the open air 
with little covering, and with little other food than sweet pota- 
toes and meat mostly without salt. Though it was in the 
unhealthy season of autumn, yet sickness seldom occurred. 
The General fared worse than his men ; for his baggage hav- 
ing caught fire by accident, he had literally but half a blanket 
to cover him from the dews of the night, and but half a hat 
to shelter him from the rays of the sun. Soon after the defeat 
of Tynes, General Marion took a position on Snow's Island, 
This is situated at the conflux of the Peedee and Lynch's 
creek, is of a triangular form, and is bounded by Peedee on ' 
the northeast — by Lynch's creek on the north — and by Clark's 
creek, a branch of the latter, on the west and south. Here, 


by having command of the rivers, he could be abundantly 
supplied with provisions, and his post was inaccessible except 
by water. Major John Postell was stationed to guard the 
lower part of the river Peedee. While there, Captain James De- 
Peysterof the royal army, with twenty-nine grenadiers, having- 
taken post in the house of the major's father, the major posted 
his small command of twenty-eight militia-men in such posi- 
tions as commanded its doors and demanded their surrender. 
This being refused, he set fire to an out-house and was pro- 
ceeding to burn that in which they were posted ; and nothing 
but the immediate submission of the whole party restrained 
him from sacrificing his father's valuable property to gain an 
advantage for his country. 

From Snow's Island during the winter next after the fall 
of Charlestown, General Marion sent out his scouts in all 
directions. In January 1781, he sent two small detachments 
of militia dragoons, under the command of Major Postell and 
Captain Postell, to cross the Santee. The former destroyed a 
great quanity of valuable stores at Manigault's ferry ; the latter 
did the same at another place in the vicinity. Theace he 
marched to Keithfield near Monk's Corner, where he destroyed 
fourteen wagons loaded with soldiers' clothing and baggage; 
besides several other valuable stores, and took forty prisoners 
chiefly British regulars, and etfected the whole without any 
loss. In the course of these desultory operations, Marion 
killed and captured a number of the British and their tory 
friends more than double of his own force. 

In the course of the contest, a new race of young warriors 
had sprung up. The General was desirous of employing them, 
and to give some repose to those who had served from the 
beginning. Among these the brothers, the Postells, were all 
active and enterprising. Major Benson commanded the cav- 
alry; under him was John Thompson Green; under them 
were Daniel Conyers and James M'Cauley ; who on every 
occasion signalized themselves. Captain M'Cottry commanded 
a company of riflemen.* Wherever his name was repeated 
it struck terror into the hearts of the enemy. The warfare 
was various and bloody. Lieutenant Roger Gordon, of Marion's 
party being upon a scout upon Lynch's creek, stopped at a 
house of refreshments. While there, the house was beset and 
fired by a Captain Butler and a party of tories greatly superior 
in number. Gordon's party surrendered upon a promise of 
quarters, but after laying down their arms, Butler fell upon 
them and butchered them in cold blood. 

* No man was more belored by his men than M'Cottry ; his active services 
brought upon him a complication of disorders which shortened his life. 

Marion's brigade. 235 

In consequence of this massacre "no quarters for tories," 
was the cry with Marion's men when going into action. Still 
however the regular British forces were treated with lenity, 
and agreeably to the generally received rules of war, when 
they laid down their arms. The pruning hook was converted 
into a spear; and the saw, under the hands of a common 
blacksmith, became a terrible sabre. Powder and ball were 
much wanted. On account of the small stock of both, the 
orders often were to give the British one or two fires and to 
retreat. Those fires were always well directed and did great 

Marion so etfectually thwarted the schemes of the British 
against South Carolina, that to drive him out of the country 
was with them a favorite object. The house burnings and 
devastations perpetrated by Weyms and the tories under his 
direction, had not produced that intimidation and disposition 
to submit which had been vainly expected from men who 
disregarded property when put in competition with liberty. 
A new and well concerted attempt to destroy, or disperse, the 
brigade which had given so much trouble to the late conque- 
rors was made early in 1781. 

Colonel Watson moved down from Camden along the San- 
tee, and Colonel Doyle crossing Lynch's creek marched down 
on the east side of it. The point of their intended junction 
was supposed to be at Snow's Island. General Marion heard 
first of the approach of Watson, and marched from Snow's 
Island with almost the whole of his force to meet him. At 
Tawcaw swamp, nearly opposite to the mouth of the present 
Santee canal on the east side of the river, he laid the first am- 
buscade for Watson. General Marion had then but very little 
ammunition, not more than twenty rounds to each man. His 
orders were to give two fires and retreat; and they were 
executed by Colonel Peter Horry with great effect. Watson 
made good the passage of the swamp, and sent Major Harrison 
with a corps of tory cavalry and some British in pursuit of 
Horry. This had been foreseen by the cautious Marion ; and 
Captain Daniel Conyers, at the head of a party of cavalry, 
was placed in a second ambuscade. As soon as the tories 
and British came up, Conyers, in a spirited and well-directed 
charge, killed with his own hands the officer who led on the 
opposite charge. Conyer's men followed his gallant example. 
Many of Harrison's party were killed, and the remainder made 
their escape to the main body of the British. Such work re- 
quired little powder and ball. General Marion continued to 
harass Watson on his march, by pulling up bridges and op- 
posing him in like manner at every difficult pass until they 
had reached near the lower bridge on Black river, seven miles 


below King's Tree. Here Watson made a feint of inarching 
down the road to Georgetown. Marion being too weak to 
detach a party to the bridge, had talien an advantageous post 
on that road; when Watson wheeling suddenly about gained 
possession of the bridge on the west side. This was an im- 
portant pass on the road leading into the heart of Williams- 
burg and to Snow's Island. The river on the west runs under 
a high bluff; the grounds on the opposite side are low and 
the river, though generally fordable, was then raised by a 
swell nearly up to the summit of the opposite shore. Watson 
still hesitated about passing. 

General Marion, informed of Watson's movement, without 
delay approached the river, plunged into it on horseback and 
called to his men to follow. They did so. The whole party 
reached the opposite shore in safety, and marched forward to 
occupy the east end of the bridge. Marion detached Major 
James with forty musqueteers, and thirty riflemen under 
M'Cottry to burn the bridge. The riflemen were posted to 
advantage on the river bank, but as soon as their friends had 
gained possession of the east end of the bridge, and had ap- 
plied fascines to it, Watson opened the fire of his artillery 
upon them, but it was unavailing. The west bank of the river 
was so much elevated above the east that before his field pieces 
could be brought to bear upon the Americans, his artillerists 
were exposed to the fire of the riflemen, who deliberately 
picked them off as they advanced to the summit of the hill. 
In the meantime Major James' party had fired the bridge. 
Thus were Marion's friends saved from similar plunderiugs 
and conflagrations with those they had suffered under Weyms. 
The practice of Watson was to burn all the houses of Marion's 
men that were in the line of his march. 

Watson was so much intimidated by this affair, that he im- 
mediately quitted the lower bridge and proceeded by forced 
marches to Georgetown. General Marion repassed Black river, 
and hung alternately on the rear, the flanks, or the front of 
the enemy until they had reached Sampit bridge, nine miles 
from Georgetown. There M'Cottry gave them a parting fire 
from his riflemen. During these transactions, Watson com- 
manded five hundred men, and Marion not half that number. 
The loss of the British is unknown, that of Marion but 
one man. 

The three officers, and all the men employed by the General 
at the lower bridge, were inhabitants, whose plantations and 
families would have been exposed to the enemy had they made 
good their passage. From Sampit bridge Marion marched 
directly for Snow's Island. There he heard of the approach 
of Doyle, who had driven Colonel Erwin from the Island and 

CAMPAIGN OF 1781. 237 

taken possession of the pass of Lynch's creek, at Wither- 
spoon's ferry. When M'Cottry, advancing in front, arrived at 
Witherspoon's, on the south bank of the creek, the British on 
the north were scutthng the ferry boat. He approached softly 
to the edge of the water and gave them an unexpected fire. 
A short conflict took place between ill-directed musketry, 
whose balls hit the tops of the trees on the opposite side, and 
riflemen, whose well directed aim seldom failed of doing exe- 
cution at every fire. Doyle fell back to Camden. 

In addition to these skirmishes, Marion made two descents 
on Georgetown. In the first, he came unexpectedly on a body 
of tories, whom he charged and dispersed after their Captain 
and several of their men were killed. In this aff'air Captain 
Marion, brother of the present member of Congress from 
Charlestown District, was killed and, it was believed, after he 
had been taken prisoner. 

Marion's second descent was more successful. With a 
party of militia he marched to Georgetown, and began regular 
approaches against the British post in that place. On the first 
night after his men had broken ground, their adversaries 
evacuated their works and retreated to Charlestown. Shortly 
after, one Manson, an inhabitant of South Carolina, who had 
joined the British, appeared in an armed vessel and demanded 
permission to land his men in the town. This being refused, 
he sent a few of them ashore and set fire to it. Upwards of 
forty houses were speedily reduced to ashes. 

After the return of General Greene to Carolina, in 1781, 
Marion acted under his orders, and the exploits of his brigade, 
no longer acting by itself, made a part of the general history 
of the revolutionary war. 


Campaign of 1781 Continued. 

It was no sooner known in South Carolina that Lord Corn- 
wallis had left the State in pursuit of the American army, 
than General Sumpter, who had just recovered from his 
wound, collected a force to penetrate into the heart of the 
country, as well with the design of distracting the views of the 
British as of encouraging the friends of independence. Early 
in February, 1781, he crossed the Congaree, and appeared in 
force before Fort Granby and destroyed its magaznes. Lord 
Rawdon advanced from Camden for the relief of the post, on 
which General Sumpter retreated, but immediately appeared 
before another British post, near Colonel Thompson's. On 
the second day after this excursion he attacked and defeated 
an escort convoying some wagons and stores from Charles- 

238 HisToar of the revolution. 

town to Camden. Thirteen of the British detachment were 
killed and sixty-six taken prisoners. The captured stores 
were sent in boats down the Congaree, but on their passage 
they were retaken. Sumpter, with three hundred and fifty 
horsemen, swam across the Santee and proceeded to Fort 
Watson, at Wright's Bluff, but on Lord Rawdon's marching 
from Camden for its relief, he retired to Black river. On his 
return, he was attacked near Camden, by Major Frazer, at the 
head of a considerable force of British regulars and militia. 
The Major lost twenty of his men, and was obliged to retreat 
Sumpter having, by this excursion, satisfied the friends of in- 
dependence in the centre of the State that their cause was not 
desperate, retired in safety to the borders of North Carolina. 
Hiiherto all his enterprises had been effected by volunteers 
from the militia, but the long continued services in the field 
which were required, pointed out the proprietj^ of a more per- 
manent corps. He, therefore, in March, 1781, enlisted three 
small regiments of regular Stale troops, to be employed in 
constant service for the space of ten months. With these, and 
the returning continental army, the war recommenced in South 
Carolina with new vigor, and was carried on with more 

General Greene, having determined to return to South 
Carolina, sent orders to General Pickens to collect the militia 
of his brigade, and to prevent supplies from going to the 
British garrisons at Ninety-Six and Augusta. Lieutenant- 
Colonel Lee, with his legion and part of the second Maryland 
brigade, was ordered to advance before the continental troops, 
to co-operate with General Marion. 

About the time that these preparations were making to 
renew the war in South Carolina, seventy-six exiles, who had 
been compelled to seek refuge with General Marion on the 
north side of Santee, re-crossed that liver with the bold design 
of re-visiting their own settlements. Some of them were from 
the militia of the sea-coast of Carolina, to the southward of 
Charlestown, and others from Georgia. The first commanded 
by Colonel Harden, the latter by Colonel Baker. On their 
way they fell in with about twenty-five of the royal militia, at 
Four Holes, and captured the whole of them. The privates 
were paroled, and their officers carried off. As they marched 
through the country, parties were sent to the houses of the 
officers of the royal militia, some of whom were taken, and 
others fied to Charlestown. Colonel Harden had two or three 
successful skirmishes with detachments of the British, but his 
capital manoeuvre was the surprise of Fort Balfour, at Poka- 
taligo. By his address and good management in this enter- 
prise, three British Colonels of militia, Fenwick, Lechraere 

CAMPAIGN OP 1781. 239 

and Kelsal, with thirty-two regular dragoons and fifty-six pri- 
vates of the royal militia, surrendered on the 12th of April, 1781, 
to this handful of returning exiles, without any loss on their 
part. Colonel Harden had his party considerably increased 
by daily accessions of the people inhabiting the southern sea- 
coast of Carolina. With their aid he prosecuted, in that part 
of the State, the same successful plan of opposition to the 
British which was begun much earlier in the northwestern 
and northeastern extremities under the auspices of his gallant 
co-adjutors, Sumpter and Marion. 

General Greene marched with the main army from Deep 
river, in North Carolina, towards Camden. The British were 
no less alarmed than surprised when they heard that Lieuten- 
ant-Colonel Lee had penetrated through the country, and in 
eight days efiected a junction with General Marion, near the 
Santee, and that the main body of the Americans encamped 
on the 19th of April before Camden. To secure the provi- 
sions that grow on the fertile banks of the Santee and Con- 
garee rivers, the British had erected a chain of posts in their 
vicinity. One of the most important of these was on an emi- 
nence, known by the name of Wright's Bluff, and called Fort 
Watson. This was closely invested, on the 15th of April, 
by about eighty militia-men under General Marion, and by the 
continentals commanded by Lieutenant-Colonel Lee. Neither 
party had any other means of annoyance or defence but mus- 
ketry. Though the ground on which the fort stood was an 
Indian mount, thirty or forty feet high, yet the besiegers, 
under the direction of Colonel Maham, erected, in a few days, 
on an unusual plan, a work much higher. From this emi- 
nence the American riflemen fired into the fort with such exe- 
cution that the besieged durst not show themselves. On the 
twenty-third the garrison, consisting of one hundred and four- 
teen men, surrendered by capitulation. 

Camden, before whiph the main army was encamped, is a 
village situated on a plain covered on the south and east sides 
by the Wateree, and a creek which empties itself in that river. 
On the western and northern by six strong redoubts. It was de- 
fended by Lord Rawdon with about nine hundred men. The 
American army, consisting of about seven hundred continen- 
tals, was unequal to the task of carrying this post by storm or 
of completely investing it. The General therefore took a 
good position at Hobkirk's Hill, about a mile distant, in expecta- 
tion of favorable events and with a view of alluring the gar- 
rison out of their lines. Lord Rawdon armed his musicians, 
drummers, and everything that could carry a firelock, and 
with great spirit sallied on the twenty-fifth. An engagement 
ensued. Victory for some time very evidently inclined to the 


side of the Americans ; but in the progress of the action the 
fortune of the day was changed, and the British kept the field. 
Lieutenant-Colonel Washington was ordered to turn the right 
flank of the British, and to charge in their rear. While he exe- 
cuted this order he was so confident of the success of the 
main army, that he divided his men into small parties, and 
made them take such positions as he thought most eligible for 
intercepting the fugitives on their retreat to Camden. At one 
time he had in his possesion upwards of two hundred ; but 
he relinquished the greatest part of them on seeing the Amer- 
ican army retreat. On this unexpected reverse of fortune he 
paroled the officers on the field of battle — collected his men — 
wheeled round — and made his retreat good, with the loss of 
three men, and at the same time brought oif near fifty pris- 
oners. The killed, wounded, and missing of the Americans 
was about two hundred. The British had one officer killed, 
and eleven taken prisoners. General Greene retreated in good 
order, with his artillery and baggage, to Gun Swamp, about 
five miles from the place of action. In the evening after this 
action Lieutenant-Colonel Washington marched with fifty men 
of the cavalry within a mile of the British army, and after send- 
ing forward a small party, concealed his principal force in the 
woods. As soon as the advanced small party was discovered, 
Major Coffin, at the head of about forty of the Irish volun- 
teers, pursued them a considerable distance. After the British 
party had passed the American cavalry, which was concealed, 
the latter rushed from the woods and charged them so briskly 
in the rear, that they lost upwards of twenty of their number. 
Very soon after the action, on the 25th of April, General 
Greene, knowing that the British garrison could not subsist 
long in Camden without fresh supplies from Charlestown or 
the country, detached a reinforcement to General Marion on 
the road to Nelson's ferry; and on the third of May crossed 
the Wateree, and took occasionally such positions as would 
most effectually prevent succors from going into the town from 
that quarter. On the seventh of May Lord Rawdon received 
a considerable reinforcement by the arrival of the detachment 
under Lieutenant-Colonel Watson. With this increase of 
force he attempted, on the day following, to compel General 
Greene to another action ; but soon found that this was im- 
practicable. Failing in his design, he returned to Camden ; 
and on the tenth burned the gaol, mills, many private houses 
and a great deal of his own baggage — evacuated the post— 
and retired with his whole army to the south of the Santee; 
leaving about thirty of his own sick and wounded, and as 
many of the Americans, who, on the twenty-fifth of April, 
had fallen into his hands. Lord Rawdon discovered as great 

CAMPAIGN OF 1781. 241 

prudence in this evacuation of Camden as he had shown 
bravery in its defence. The fall of Fort Watson broke the 
chain of communication with Charlestown, and the positions 
-of the American army intercepted all supplies from the coun- 
try. The return of General Greene to the southward being 
unexpected, the stores of the garrison were not provided for a 
siege. Lord Rawdon had the honor of saving his men though 
he lost the post, the country, and the confidence of the tories. 
He off'ered every assistance in his power to the friends of Brit- 
ish government who would accompany him ; but it was a 
hard alternative to the new-made subjects to be obliged to 
abandon their property, or be left at the mercy of their exas- 
perated countrymen. Several families nevertheless accom- 
panied his lordship. These were cruelly neglected after their 
arrival in Charlestown. They built themselves huts without 
the works. Their settlement was called Rawdontown ; which, 
from its poverty and wretchedness, became a term of reproach. 
Many women and children, who lived comfortably on their 
farms near Camden, soon died of want in these, their new 

This evacuation animated the friends of Congress, and 
gave a very general alarm to the British. The former had 
been called upon for their personal services, to assist in re- 
gaining the country, but were disheartened by the repulse of 
General Greene from before Camden ; but, from the moment 
that Lord Rawdon evacuated that post their numbers daily in- 
creased, and the British posts fell in quick succession. On 
the day after the evacuation of Camden the garrison of 
Orangeburg, consisting of seventy British militia and twelve 
regulars, surrendered to General Sumpter. The next day fort 
Motte capitulated. After the surrender of fort Watson, Gen- 
eral Marion and Lieutenant-Colonel Lee crossed the Santee 
and moved up to this post, which lies above the Fork on the 
south side of the Congaree, where they arrived on the eighth of 
May. The approaches were carried on so rapidly, that a 
house in the centre of the fort was set on fire the fourth day 
after they began the entrenchments ; and the garrison, which 
consisted of 165 men, commanded by Lieutenant M'Pherson, 
was compelled, after a brave defence, to surrender at discre- 
tion. On this occasion Mrs. Motte displayed an eminent ex- 
ample of disinterested patriotism. The British had built 
their works round her dwelling house, on which she removed 
to a neighboring hut. When she was informed that firing the 
house was the easiest mode of reducing the garrison, she pre- 
sented the besiegers with a quiver of African arrows to be em- 
ployed for that purpose. Skewers armed with combustible 
materials were also used, and with more effect. Success soon 


crowned these experiments, and her joy was inexpressible 
that the reduction of the post was expedited, though at the ex- 
peiise of her property. Two days after this surrender, the 
British evacuated their post at Nelson's ferry — blew up their 
fortifications — and destroyed a great part of their stores. The 
day following, fort Granby, near Friday's ferry, about thirty 
miles to the westward of fortMotte, surrendered by capitula- 
tion. Very advantageous terms were given by the assailants 
in consequence of information that Lord Rawdon was march- 
ing to its relief This was a post of more consequence than 
the others, and might have been better defended; but the 
otfer of security to the baggage of the garrison, in which 
was included an immense quantity of plunder, hastened the 
surrender. For some time before, it had been greatly harassed 
by Colonel Taylor's regiment of militia, and had also been in- 
vested by General Siimpter. On the night of the fourteenth 
of May, Lieutenant-Colonel Lee erected a battery within six 
hundred yards of its out-works, on which he mounted a six- 
•pounder. After the third discharge from this field-piece. Major 
Maxwell capitulated. His force consisted of three hundred 
and fifty-two men, a great part of whom were royal militia. 

While these operations were carrying on against the small 
posts, General Greene proceeded with the main army to 
Ninety-Six. This place being of great consequence was de- 
fended by a considerable force. Lieutenant-Colonel Cniger 
conducted the defence with great bravery and judgment. 
Major Green, in particular, acquired distinguished reputa- 
tion by his spirited and judicious conduct in defending the 
redoubt against which the Americans made Iheir principal 

On the left of the besiegers was a work erected in the form 
of a star; on the right was a strong stockade fort, with two 
block houses in it. The town, flanked by these two works, 
was also piquetted with strong piquets, and surrounded with 
a ditch, and a bank near the height of a common parapet 
There were also several flushes in different parts of the town, 
and all the works communicated with each other by covered 
ways. On the twenty-third of May 1781, the main body of 
the American army encamped in a wood within half a mile 
of Ninety-Six; and on that night, threw up two flushes within 
one hundred and fifty yards of the star fort. The next morn- 
ing the enemy made a sally, and being supported by the ar- 
tillery and musketry from the parapet of the star redoubt, 
drove the besiegers from them. The next night two strong 
block batteries were erected at the distance of three hundred 
and fifty yards, which were opened in the morning. Another 
batterytwenty feet high, erected within two hundred and twenty 

CAMPAIGN OF 1781. 243 

yards, was finished in a few days ; and soon afterwards, 
another of the same height was erected within one hundred 
yards of the main fort. Approaches were gradually carried 
on against the redoubt on the left. Colonel Koziusko, a 
young gentleman of distinction from Poland, superintended 
the operations of the besiegers, and by his assiduity, though 
the ground was hard and the situation unfavorable, a third 
paraUel within thirty yards of the ditch was completed on 
May 14th ; and a rifle battery, upwards of thirty feet high, 
erected at the same distance. On the seventeenth the abbatis 
was turned, and two trenches and a mine were extended so 
as to be within six feet of the ditch. Few sieges aff'ord greater 
instances of perseverance and intrepidity, than were exhibited 
on this occasion by the besiegers and besieged. Riflemen were 
employed on both sides, who immediately levelled at every 
person who appeared in sight and very seldom missed their 
object. Various success attended the conflicts between the 
several covering parties of the workmen, and those who re- 
peatedly sallied from the garrison. 

On the third of June, twelve days after the commencement 
of this seige, a fleet arrived at Charlestown from Ireland having 
on board the third, nineteenth, and thirtieth regiment of his 
Britannic majesty, a detachment from the guards, and a con- 
siderable body of recruits, the whole commanded by Lieuten- 
ant-Colonel Gould. Earl Cornwallis had given permission to 
the commanders of the British forces in South Carolina, to 
detain these reinforcements if they conceived that the service 
of his Britannic majesty required it; otherwise they were to 
be sent forward to join his lordship. On the 7th of June, 
178 1, Lord Rawdon marched from Charlestown, with these 
newly arrived troops, for the relief of the garrison at Ninety- 
Six. Great were the difficulties they had to encounter in 
rapidly marching under the rage of a burning sun through the 
whole extent of South Carolina; but much greater was their 
astonishment at being informed, that their services in the field 
were necessary to oppose the yet unsubdued rebels in the 
province. They had been amused with hopes that nothing 
remained for them to do, but to sit down as setders on the 
forfeited lands of a conquered country. 

The American army had advanced their approaches very 
near that critical point, after which further resistance on the 
part of the garrison would have been temerity. At this inter- 
esting moment intelligence was received, that Lord Rawdon 
was near at hand with a reinforcement of about two thousand 
men. An American lady, who had lately married an officer 
then in the British garrison of Ninety-Six, had been bribed 
by a large sum of money to convey a letter to Lieutenant- 
Pnl/^nol Pi-iicror iirith tlip ivplnnms np^vs nf their annroach. 


Attempts had been made to retard their march, but without 
the desired effect. Their vicinity made it necessary either to 
raise the seige, or attempt the reduction of the place by a 
coup-de-main. The last was agreed upon, and the necessary 
dispositions made on the 18th of June. Lieutenant-Colonel 
Lee, with his legion infantry, and Captain Kirkwood's light 
infantry, made the attack on the right. Lieutenant-Colonel 
Campbell, with the first Maryland and first Virginia regirnents, 
were to have stormed the star redoubt, the ditch of which was 
eight or nine feet deep, the parapet eleven or twelve feet high, 
and raised with sand-bags near three feet more. The forlorn 
hopes were led on by Lieutenants Duval and Sheldon, and 
were followed by a party with hooks and entrenching tools to 
pull down the sand-bags and reduce the parapet. Had this 
been effected, the besieged could not have annoyed the assail- 
ants without exposing themselves to the American marksmen. 
The artillery soon made sufficient breaches on the fortified 
redoubt on the right, for the infantry under the command of 
Lieutenant Colonel Lee to assault the garrison. It was there- 
. fore abandoned, and they took possession without loss. On 
the left the utmost exertions of resolution and fortitude were 
displayed, but failed of success. The parties led by Duval 
and Sheldon entered the ditch, and, though galled by an in- 
cessant fire, made every effort to get down the sand-bags. 
Both these gallant officers were wounded, and not more than 
one in six of their party escaped. The near approach of Lord 
Rawdon, and the uncertainty of final success, induced General 
Greene to raise the siege and to retreat over the Saluda, after 
having lost about one hundred and fifty men. 

Truly distressing was the situation of the American army: 
when in the grasp of victory, to be obliged to expose them- 
selves to the dangers of an hazardous assault, and afterwards 
to abandon the siege: when they were nearly masters of the 
whole country, to be compelled to retreat to its extremity: 
after subduing the greatest part of the force lately opposed to 
them, to be under the necessity of encountering still greater 
reinforcements, when their remote situation precluded them 
from the hope of receiving a single recruit. In this gloomy 
situation there were not wanting persons who advised General 
Greene to leave the State, and retire with his remaining force 
to Virginia. To arguments and suggestions of this kind he 
nobly replied, " I will recover the country, or die in the at- 
tempt." This distinguished officer, whose genius was most 
vigorous in those perilous extremities when feeble minds 
abandon themselves to despair, adopted the only resource now 
left him, of avoiding an engagement till the British force 
should be divided. 

Lord Rawdon, who by rapid marches was very near Nine- 

CAMPAIGN OF 1781. 245 

ty-Six at the time of the assault, pursued General Greene as 
far as the Enoree; but finding it impossible to overtake the 
light retreating American army, and supposing that they had 
gone to North Carolina or Virginia, his lordship consoled 
himself with the imaginary advantage of having driven the 
rebels out of the country. On this occasion General Pickens 
exhibited an illustrious instance of republican virtue. When 
the retreat was ordered, the General's family and private pro- 
perty was sent off with the baggage of the army. This pre- 
caution, though wished for by all, and justified on every 
principle of prudence, gave an alarm to many who either had 
not the same means of transportation, or who could not have 
attended to it without deserting the American army. To en- 
courage the men to stay in the camp, and their families to 
remain on their plantations, General Pickens ordered his 
family and property back again to his house within twenty 
miles of the British garrison. His example saved the country 
in the vicinity from depopulation, and the army under Gene- 
ral Greene from sustaining a great diminution of their num- 
bers by the desertion of the militia to take care of their fami- 

The arrival of the British reinforcement, and the subsequent 
retreat from Ninety-Six, induced a general apprehension, that 
the British would soon re-establish the posts they had lost to 
the southward of Santep. The destination of the main army 
under Lord Cornwallis having been for some time known, 
the British Commanders in South Carolina had contracted 
their boundaries to that extent of country which is in a great 
measure inclosed by the Santee, the Congaree, and the Edisto. 
Within these rivers Lord Rawdon intended to confine his 
future operations, and to canton his forces in the most eligible 
positions. His lordship, taking it for granted that the Ameri- 
cans had abandoned South Carolina, resolved, upon his return 
from pursuing General Greene, to divide his army, with the 
intention of fixing a detachment at the Congaree; but he soon 
found that his adversaries were not disposed to give up the 
prize for which they had so long contended. Greene, on 
hearing that Lord Rawdon had marched with a part of his 
force to Congaree, faced about to give him battle. Lord Raw- 
don, no less surprised than alarmed at this unexpected move- 
ment of his lately retreating foe, abandoned the Congaree in 
two days after his arrival there and retreated expeditiously to 
Orangeburg. In this position he was secured on one side 
with a river, and on the other with strong buildings little 
inferior to recioubts. Greene pursued — encamped within five 
miles of this post — and offered him battle. His lordship, 
secure in his stronghold, would not venture out ; and General 


Greene was too weak to attack him in his works with any 
prospect of success. In the course of these movements, on 
the second of July, Captain Eggleston, of Lee's legion, fell in 
with forty-nine British horse, near the Saluda, and took forty- 
eight of them prisoners. Whilst the American army lay near 
Orangeburg, advice was received that Lieutenant-Colonel 
Cruger had evacuated Ninety-Six, and was marching with 
the troops of that garrison through the forks of Edisto to join 
Lord Rawdon at Orangeburg. As the north fork of Edisto 
is not passable by an army, without boats, for thirty miles 
above or below the British encampments, General Greene 
could not throw himself between with any prospect of pre- 
venting the junction ; he therefore retired to the high hills of 
Santee, and Lord Rawdon and Lieutenant-Colonel Cruger the 
day after made a junction. The evacuation of Camden having 
been effected by striking at the posts below it, the same ma- 
nosuvre was now attempted to induce the British to leave 
Orangeburg. With this view, on the day that the main 
American army retired from before that post,' Generals Suinp- 
ter and Marion, with their brigades and the legion cavalry, 
were detached to Monk's Corner and Dorchester. They 
moved down by different roads, and in three days commenced 
their operations. Lientenant-Colonel Lee took all the wa- 
gons and wagon-horses belonging to a convoy of provisions. 
Colonel Wade Hampton charged a party of British dragoons 
within five miles of Charlestown. He also took fifty priso- 
ners at Strawberry ferry, and burned four vessels loaded with 
valuable stores for the British army. General Snmpter ap- 
peared before the garrison at Biggin's church, which consisted 
of five'hundred infantry and upwards of one hundred cavalry. 
Lieutenant-Colonel Coates, who commanded there, after hav- 
ing repulsed the advanced party of General Sumpter, on the 
next evening destroyed his stores and retreated towards Charles- 
town. He was closely pursued by Lieutenant-Colonel Lee 
with the legion, and Lieutenant-Colonel Hampton with the 
State cavalry. The legion came up with them near Shu- 
brick's plantation, took their rear guard and all their baggage. 
Captain Armstrong, of Lee's legion, at the head only of five 
men, charged through a considerable part of their lines and 
escaped with the loss of two men. Generals Sumpter and 
Marion, after some hours, came up with the main body ; but 
by this time the British had secured themselves by taking an 
advantageous post in a range of honses. An attack was how- 
ever made, and continued with spirit till upwards of forty 
were killed or wounded by the fire from the'houses. The 
British lost in these different engagements one hundred and 
forty prisoners, besides several kiUed and wounded, all the 

CAMPAIGN OF 1781. 247 

baggage of the nineteenth regiment, and above one hundred 
horses and several wagons. 

Thus was the war carried on. While .the British kept their 
forces compact, they could not cover the country, and the 
American general had the precaution to avoid fighting. 
When they divided the army, their detachments were sepa- 
rately and successfully attacked. While they were in force 
in the upper country, light parlies of Americans were annoy- 
ing their small posts in the low country near Charlestown. 
The people soon found that the late conquerors were not able 
to atford them their promised protection. The spirit of revolt 
became general, and the British interest daily declined. 

Soon after these events. Lord Jiawdon, driven from almost 
the whole of his posts, baffled in all his schemes, and over- 
whelmed with vexation, sailed for Europe. Tn the course of 
his command he aggravated the unavoidable calamities of 
war by many acts of severity, which admit of no other apol- 
ogy than that they were supposed to be useful to the interests 
of his royal master. 

About the same time that Generals Sumpter and Marion 
were detached to the lower parts of the State, the main Amer- 
ican Army retired to the high hills of Santee, and the British 
returned to their former station near the junction of the Wa- 
teree and the Congaree. Greene, in a little time, began to 
concert measures to force them a second time from these 
posts. Though the two armies were within fifteen miles of 
each other, on a right line, yet, as two rivers intervened, and 
boats could not be procured, the American army was obliged 
to take a circuit of seventy miles, with the view of more con- 
veniently crossing the Wateree and the Congaree. Soon after 
their crossing these rivers, the continental army was joined 
by the State troops and several corps of militia. The whole 
American force, thus collected, proceeded the next morning 
to attack the British army commanded by Lieutenant-Colonel 
Stewart. On the approach of the Americans, the British had 
retired from the Congarees about forty miles nearer Charles- 
town, and taken post at the Eutaw Springs. Greene drew up 
his little force, consisting of about two thousand men, in two 
lines. The front consisted of the militia from North and 
South Carolina, and was commanded by Generals Marion 
and Pickens, and by Colonel De Malmedy. The second con- 
sisted of the continental troops from North Carolina, Virginia 
and Maryland, and was led on by General Sumner, Lieuten- 
ant-Colonel Campbell, and Colonel Williams. Lieutenant- 
Colonel Lee, with his legion, covered the right flank; Lieu- 
tenant-Colonel Henderson, with the State troops, covered the 
left. Lieutenant-Colonel Washington, with his cavalry, and 


Captain Kirkwood, with the Delaware troops, formed a corps 
of reserve. As the Americans advanced to the attack, they 
fell in with two advanced parties of the British, three or four 
miles ahead of their main army. These being briskly charged 
by the legion and State troops, soon retired. The front line 
continued to fire and advance on the British till the action 
became general, and till they, in their turn, were obliged to 
give way. They were well supported by General Sumner's 
North Carolina brigade of Continentals, though they had been 
under discipline only for a few weeks, and were chiefly com- 
posed of militia-men who had been transferred to the conti- 
nental service to make reparation for their precipitate flight in 
former actions. In the hottest of the engagement, when great 
execution was doing on both sides. Colonel Williams and 
Lieutenant-Colonel Campbell, with the Maryland and Vir- 
ginia Continentals, were ordered by General Greene to charge 
with trailed arms. Nothing could surpass the intrepidity of 
both officers and men on this occasion ; they rushed on, in 
good order, through a heavy cannonade and a shower of mus- 
ketry, with such unshaken resolution that they bore down all 
before them. The State troops of South Carolina were de- 
prived of their gallant leader, Lieutenant-Colonel Henderson, 
who was wounded very early in the action; but they were 
nevertheless boldly led on by the second in command, Lieuten- 
ant-Colonel Hampton, to a very spirited and successful charge, 
in which they took upwards of a hundred prisoners. Lieu- 
tenant-Colonel Washington brought up the corps-de-reserve 
on the left, and charged so briskly with his cavalry and Cap- 
tain Kirkwood's light infantry, as gave them no time to rally 
or form. The British were closely pursued, and upwards of 
five hundred prisoners were taken. On their retreat they took 
their posts in a strong brick house, and in impenetrable shrubs 
and a picquetted garden. From these advantageous positions 
they renewed the action; Lieutenant-Colonel Washington 
made every possible exertion to dislodge them from the 
thickets, but failed in the attempt — had his horse shot under 
him, was wounded and taken prisoner. Four six-pounders 
were ordered up before the house from which the British were 
firing under cover. These pieces finally fell into their hands, 
and the Americans retired out of the reach of their fire. They 
left a strong picquet on the field of battle, and retreated to the 
nearest water in their rear. In the evening of the next day, 
Lieutenant-Colonel Stewart destroyed a great quantity of his 
stores, abandoned the Eutaw, and moved towards Oharles- 
town, leaving upwards of seventy of his wounded, and a 
thousand stand of arms. He was pursued for several miles, 
but without effect. The loss of the British amounted to up- 

CAMPAIGN OF 1782. 249 

wards of eleven hundred men. That of the Americans was 
about five hundred, in which number were sixty officers. 
Among the killed of Greene's army, the brave Lieutenant- 
Colonel Campbell, of the Virginia line, was the theme of uni- 
versal lamentation. While with great firmness he was lead- 
ing on his brigade to that charge which determined the fate 
of the day, he received a mortal wound. After his fall he 
inquired who gave way, and being informed the British were 
fleeing in all quarters, he added, " I die contented," and im- 
mediately expired. 

Congress honored General Greene, for his decisive conduct 
in this action, with a British standard and a gold medal; and 
they also voted their thanks to the different corps and their 

After the action at the Eutaws, the Americans retired to 
their former position on the high hills of Santee, and the Bri- 
tish took post in the vicinity of Monk's Corner. While they 
lay there, a small party of American cavalry, commanded by 
Colonel Maham,took upwards of eighty prisoners, within sight 
of their main army. The British no more acted with their 
usual vigor. On the slightest appearance of danger, they dis- 
covered a disposition to flee scarcely inferior to what was ex- 
hibited the year before by the American militia. 


Campaign of 1782. 

Though the army under Greene was too weak to risk an- 
other general action, yet it became necessary, in the close of 
the year 1781, to move into the lower country to cover the 
collection of provisions for subsistence through the winter. 
In about two months after the action at Eutaw, the main body 
of the American army was put in motion under Colonel Wil- 
liams. Greene, with two hundred horse and two hundred 
infantry, advanced by private roads and appeared near Dor- 
chester so unexpectedly and with such confidence, as induced 
the British to believe that the whole army was in his rear. This 
mancEuvre had the intended effect They abandoned their 
outposts, and retired with their whole force to the quarter- 
house on Charlestown Neck. By this means all the rice be- 
tween Edisto and Ashley rivers was saved to the Americans. 

The defence of the country was given up, and the conque- 
rors, who had lately carried their arms to the extremities of the 
State, seldom aimed at anything more than to secure them- 
selves in Charlestown Neck, and to keep a communication 
with the sea islands, on which they had collected great num- 
bers of cattle. Yet they made some excursions with cavalry. 


One of the most important was in February, 1782. While 
General Marion was attending his duty as a member of the 
Legislature, at Jacksonborough, his brigade was surprised 
near the Santee by a party of British horse commanded by 
that spirited and judicious officer, Lieutenant-Colonel Thom- 
son, (now Count Rumford.) Major Benson, an American 
officer highly esteemed by his countrymen, Mr. Thomas 
Broughton, a young gentleman of an ancient family in South 
Carolina, and some others, were killed. The remainder of 
the brigade then in camp was for some time dispersed. In a 
few days the British retired within their lines, and the militia 

In the summer of 1782, the British announced their inten- 
tion of evacuating Charlestown. They offered to pay for rice 
and other provisions that should be delivered to them before 
their departure, and at the same threatened that if it was 
withheld it should be taken by force without compensation. 
The British offers to purchase being refused, they sent out 
parties to seize provisions near the different landings, and to 
bring them by water to Charlestown. One of the most con- 
siderable parties on this service was sent to Combakee ferry, 
where they arrived on the 25th of August, 1782. Brigadier- 
General Gist, with about three hundred cavalry and infantry 
of the continental army, was detached to oppose them. He 
succeeded so far as to capture one of their schooners, and in 
a great degree to frustrate their designs. Lieutenant-Colonel 
John Laurens, though he had been confined for several days, 
on hearing of the expedition, rose from his bed and followed 
General Gist. When the British and American detachments 
approached within a few miles of each other, Lieutenant- 
Colonel Laurens, being in advance with a small party of 
regulars and militia, engaged with a much superior force, 
in expectation of support from the main body in his rear. 
In the midst of his gallant exertions, this all-accomplished 
youth received a mortal wound. Nature had adorned him 
with a profusion of her choicest gifts, to which a well con- 
ducted education had added its most useful as well as its 
most elegant improvements. Though his fortune and family 
entitled him to pre-eminence, yet he was the warm friend of 
republican equality. Generous and liberal, his heart expanded 
with genuine philanthropy. Zealous for the rights of hu- 
manity, he contended that personal liberty was the birth- 
right of every human being, however diversified by country, 
color or capacity. His insinuating address won the hearts of 
all his acquaintances ; his sincerity and virtue secured their 
lasting esteem. Acting from the most honorable principles- 
uniting the bravery and other talents of a great officer with 

CAMPAIGN or 1782. 251 

the knowledge of a complete scholar, and the engaging man- 
ners of a well bred gentleman, he was the idol of his country, 
the glory of the army, and an ornament of human nature. 
His abilities shone in the legislature and in the cabinet as 
well as in the field, and were equal to the highest stations. 
His admiring country, sensible of his rising merit, stood pre- 
pared to confer on him her most distinguished honors. Cut 
down in the midst of all these prospects, he has left mankind 
to deplore the calamities of war, which, in the twenty-seventh 
year of his life, deprived society of so invaluable a citizen. 

Throughout the year 1783, the American army acted chiefly 
on the defensive. A short time before the evacuation, an at- 
tempt was made agahist a British detachment on James' 
Island. In this unsuccessful enterprise, Captain Wilmot, a 
brave and worthy officer of the Maryland line, lost his Ufe. 
This was the last drop of blood shed in the American war. 

After General Greene moved from the high hills of Santee 
into the low country, near Charlestown, a scene of inactivity 
succeeded difierent from the busy operations of the late cam- 
paign. He was unable to attempt anything against the British 
within their lines, and they declined risking any general ac- 
tion without them. 

While the American soldiers lay encamped in this inactive 
situation, their tattered rags were so completely worn out that 
seven hundred of them were as naked as they were born, ex- 
cepting a small slip of cloth about their waists, and they were 
nearly as destitute of meat as of clothing. In this condition 
they lay for three months within four hours march of the 
British garrison in Charlestown, which contained in it more 
regular troops than there were continentals in the American 
army. Though they had abundant reason to complain, yet, 
while they were every day marching and almost every week 
fighting, they were in good health, good spirits and good 
humor; but when their enemy was confined within their for- 
tifications, and they were inactive, they became sickly and dis- 
contented, and a few began to be mutinous. Their long arrears 
of pay, the deficiency of their clothing, and their want of many 
comforts, were forgotten whilst constant action employed their 
minds and bodies, but when an interruption of hostilities 
gave them leisure to brood over their calamities, these evils 
were presented to their imaginations in aggravated colors. 
A plan was seriously laid to deliver their gallant and victo- 
rious leader into the hands of the British, but the whole 
design was happily discovered and prevented from being car- 
ried into execution. To the honor of the continental army, 
it may with justice be added, that notwitiistanding the pres- 
sure of their many sufferings, the whole number concerned in 
this plot did not exceed twelve. 

252 HisTORr OF the kevcTlution. 

In the course of the year 1782, John Mathews, Esquire, 
Governor of South CaroHna, concerted measures with some of 
the citizens in Charlestown, who wished to make their peace 
with their countrymen, for sending out of the British lines 
necessary clothing for the almost naked continentals. When 
their distresses had nearly arrived to that point beyond which 
human nature can hear no more, Mr. Joshua Lockwood, under 
the direction of Governor Mathews, brought out of Charles- 
town a large quantity of the articles which were most needed 
in the American cam pi This seasonable supply, though much 
short of their due, quieted the minds of the suffering soldiers. 
Tranquility and good order were restored in the camp, and 
duty was cheerfully performed. It is impossible to do justice 
to that invincible fortitude which was displayed by both offi- 
cers and men in the campaigns of 1780 and 1781. They 
encountered fatigues which, if particularly related, would ap- 
pear almost incredible. They had scenes of suffering to bear 
up under, of which citizens in the peaceable walks of private 
life can form no adequate idea. Without pay, almost without 
clothing, and often with but a scanty portion of the plainest 
provisions, they were exposed to the scorchingheatof the day, 
and the baleful vapors of the night. When sinking under the 
fatigues of repeated successions of forced marches, they were 
destitute of every comfort suitable to their situation. But to 
all these accumulated hardships the greatest part of them sub- 
mitted with patience and magnanimity, which reflected honor 
on human nature, and which was never exceeded by any 
army in the world. 


Revolutionary Miscellaneous History. 

The reduction of Charlestown in May 1780, was followed 
by the establishment of a military government. A Command- 
ant was appointed to superintend the affairs of the province. 
His powers were as undefined as those of the American com- 
mittees which took place in the early stages of the dispute 
between Great Britain and America, while the royal govern- 
ments were suspended and before the popular establishments 
were reduced to system. To soften the rigid and forbidding 
aspect of this new mode of administration, and as far as possi- 
ble to temper it with the resemblance of civil authority, a 
board of police for the summary determination of disputes 
was instituted. Under the direction of James Simpson, in- 
tendant of the board, a table was drawn up, ascertaining the 
depreciation of the paper currency at different periods ; from 
which the friends of royal government, who had sustained 
losses by paper payments, were induced to hope for reimburse- 


ment. This measure, though just in itself, was productive of 
unexpected and serious consequences fatal to the reviving 
fondness for the royal interest. Among the new-made British 
subjects, many were found who had been great gainers by the 
depreciation of I he American bills of credit. These, by the 
proposition of a second payment of their old debts, were filled 
with astonishment. From the circumstances of the country 
a compliance with it was, to the most opulent, extremely in- 
convenient; and to multitudes absolutely impracticable. The 
paper currency, before the reduction of Charlestown, had sup- 
planted the use of gold and silver and banished them from 
circulation. The ravages of war had desolated the country, 
and deprived the inhabitants of the means of payment. Credi- 
tors became clamorous for their long arrears of interest, and 
debtors had either lost their property or could not exchange it 
for one-half of its value. Many suits were commenced, and 
great numbers ruined. The distresses of the reclaimed sub- 
jects, within the British lines, were in many instances greater 
than those of their unsubdued countrymen who had forsaken 
all in the cause of liberty. After the Americans had recovered 
possession of a considerable part of the State, it was presumed 
that the proceedings of the board of police would be reversed. 
This redoubled their difficulties. Creditors became more press- 
ing, and at the same time the doubtfulness of British titles 
induced a depreciation of real property not far behind that of 
the American paper currency. Fear and interest had brought 
many of their new subjects to the British standard ; but, in 
consequence of the plans they adopted, in a little time both 
these powerful motives of human actions drew in an opposite 
direction. The Americans pursued a different line of conduct. 
In every period of the contest they sacrificed the few creditors 
to the many debtors. The true whigs who suffered on this 
score, consoled themselves with the idea that their country's 
good required it, and that this was the price of their indepen- 
dence. A disposition to suffer in behalf of the royal interest 
was not so visible among the professed adherents to British 
government. That immediate justice might be done to a few, 
great distress was brought on many and the cause of his 
Britannic majesty injured beyond reparation. 

Several Commandants were successively appointed to su- 
perintend the affairs of the town. Among these Lieutenant- 
Colonel Nisbit Balfour had the greatest share of administra- 
tion. This gentleman displayed in the exercise of this new 
office all the frivolous self-importance, and all the disgusting 
insolence, which are natural to Uttle minds when pufi'ed up 
by sudden elevation. By the subversion of every trace of 
the popular government, without any proper civil establish- 


ment in its place, he, with a few coadjutors, assumed and ex- 
ercised legislative, judicial, and executive powers over citizens 
in the same manner as over the common soldiery under their 
command. A series of proclamations was issued by his au- 
thority, which militated as -w^ell against the principles of the 
British constitution, as those of justice, equity, and humanity. 
For slight offences, and on partial and insufficient information, 
citizens were confined by his orders ; and that often without 
any trial. 

The place allotted for securing them, being the middle part 
of the cellar, under the Exchange, was called the Provost. 
The dampness of this unwholesome spot, together with the 
want of a fire-place, caused among the unhappy sufferers 
some deaths and much sickness. In it the American State- 
prisoner, and the British felon shared the same fate. The 
former, though for the most part charged with nothing more 
than an active execution of the laws of the State, or having 
spoken words disrespectful or injurious to the British officers 
or government, or of corresponding with the Americans, suf- 
fered indignities and distresses in common with those who 
were accused of crimes tending to subvert the peace and exist- 
ence of society. 

It has already been observed, that on the arrival of the 
British in South Carolina, the inhabitants were encouraged 
to stay on their plantations with the prospect of neutrality; 
and that, in a little time, these delusive hopes vanished. In- 
stead of drawing off the people gradually from an attachment 
to their late constitution, the conquerors were so far mistaken 
as to suppose that men could instantly be transformed from 
obstinate revolters to zealous royalists. In a short time after 
their submission they were called upon to promise that, by 
force of arms, they would oppose men who were their friends 
and neighbors, and by whose sides they had lately fought. In 
effecting a revolution from the regal to the republican govern- 
ment, a very different policy was pursued. The pcj-ular 
leaders proceeded gradually. The common people were not 
shocked by any propositions too repugnant to their ancient 
prejudices, or too remote from established opinions. Though 
the leading men in the councils of America were far from 
being adepts in the maxims of refined policy yet they were 
led, by a providential concurrence of circumstances, to carry 
on their operations in a manner which contributed more to 
their success than if every step they took had been prescribed 
by the most consummate art When they first began to oppose 
the claims of Great Britain, they were far from intending that 
separation which they afterwards effected; and would hare 
trembled with horror at the thoughts of that which at last 


they gloried in accomplishing. Strange and undesigned con- 
sequences followed in the gradual succession of causes and 
effects. In confuting the extravagant opinion of taxation 
without representation, the Americans were insensibly led to 
inquire into the nature of civillilDerty, and of their connection 
with Great Britain. From a denial of the British right of 
taxation, the way was opened for an investigation of the re- 
strictions on their commerce and of the disadvantages of their 
subordinate station. A direct renunciation of the mother 
country, in the first instance, would have drawn on the Amer- 
icans the whole weight of her vengeance, and would probably 
have disunited the colonists; but, as this was far from the 
thoughts of the popular leaders, they continued to profess, and 
with sincerity, great respect for their King and his government, 
till step by step they came to erect the standard of independ- 
ence. The sentiments of a great majority of the people coin- 
cided with the resolutions of their leaders. JS^othing was re- 
commended but what was in unison with the prevailing opin- 
ions. A prudent respect was paid to ancient prejudices, and 
nothing new was imposed till the public mind was gradually 
reconciled to its favorable reception. The first popular assem- 
blies conducted their opposition on legal grounds, and in a 
manner compatible with their allegiance. It was the acknowl- 
edged right of the subjects to meet together, and petition for a 
redress of their grievances. Their committees and congresses, 
their resolutions of non-importation and non-exportation con- 
tained nothing unconstitutional. The association which was 
the first band of popular union in South Carolina, was sanc- 
tioned by no other penalty but that of withholding all inter- 
course with those who should refuse to concur with the same 

The distinction of whig and tory took its rise in the year 
1775. Both parties in the interior country were then embo- 
died, and were obliged to impress provisions for their respect- 
ive support The advocates for Congress prevailing, they 
paid for articles consumed in their camps; but as no funds 
were provided for discharging the expenses incurred by the 
royalists, all that was consumed by them was considered as a 
robbery. This laid the foundation of a piratical war between 
whigs and tories, which was productive of great distress and 
deluged the country with blood. In the interval between the 
insurrection of 1775, and the year 1780, the whigs were occa- 
sionally plundered by parties who had attempted insurrections 
in favor of royal government. But all that was done prior to 
the surrender of Charlestown was trifling when compared to 
what followed. After that event, pohtical hatred raged with 
uncommon fury, and the calamities of civil war desolated the 

256 HisTOKr OF the revoltttion. 

State. The ties of nature were in several instances dissolved 
and that reciprocal good will, and confidence, which hold 
mankind together in society, was in a great degree extin- 
guished. Countrymen, neighbors, friends, and brothers took 
different sides and ranged 'themselves under the opposing 
standards of the contending factions. In every little precinct, 
more especially in the interior parts of the State, King's-men 
and Congress-men were names of dictinction. The passions 
on both sides were kept in perpetual agitation, and wrought 
up to a degree of fury, which rendered individuals regardless 
not only of the laws of war but of the principles of humanity. 
While the British had the ascendency, their partizans gave 
full scope to their interetsed and malicious passions. People 
of the worst characters emerged from their hiding places in 
swamps, called themselves King's-men and began to appro- 
priate to their own use whatsoever came in their way. Every 
act of cruelty and injustice was sanctified, provided the actor 
called himself a friend to the King and the sufi"erer was de- 
nominated a rebel. Of those who were well-disposed to the 
claims of America, there were few to be found who had not 
their houses and plantations repeatedly rifled. Under the 
sanction of subduing rebellion, private revenge was gratifiedi 
Many houses were burned, and many people inhumanly mur- 
dered. Numbers for a long time were obliged either entirely 
to abandon their homes, or to sleep in the woods and swamps. 
Rapine, outrage, and murder became so common as to inter- 
rupt the free intercourse between one place and another. That 
security and protection which individuals expect by entering 
into civil society, ceased almost totally. Matters remained in 
this situation for the greatest part of a year after the surrender 
of Charlestown. When General Greene returned to South Car- 
olina, in the spring of 1781, everything was reversed. In a 
few weeks he dispossessed the British of all their posts in the 
upper country, and the exasperated whigs once more had the 
superiority. On their return to their homes, they generally 
found starving families and desolate plantations. To reim- 
burse their losses, and to gratify revenge, they, in their turn, 
began to plunder and to murder. The country was laid waste, 
and private dwellings frequently stained with the blood of 
husbands and fathers inhumanly shed in the presence of their 
wives and children. About this time Governor Rutledge re- 
turned to South Carolina, and exerted his great abilities in 
re-establishing order and security. To this end he issued a 
proclamation, strictly forbidding all violence and rapine. Mag- 
istrates were appointed in every part of the State recovered 
from the British. Civil government was restored. Property 
was secured. Confusion and anarchy gave place to order and 


regular government. The people were happy, and rejoiced 
in the revolution. 

In the close of the year 1781, when the successes of the 
American army had confined the late conquerors to the vi- 
cinity of Charlestown, a desperate hand of tories adopted the 
infernal scheme of taking their last revenge by carrying fire 
and sword into the settlements of the whig militia. To this 
end Major William Cunningham, of the British militia, col- 
lected a party, and having furnished them with everything 
necessary for laying waste the country, sallied from Charles- 
town. He and his associates concealed themselves till they 
arrived in the back settlements far in the rear of the American 
army, and there began to plunder, burn and murder. In the 
unsuspecting hour of sleep and domestic security, they en- 
tered the houses of the solitary farmers and sacrificed to their 
revenge the obnoxious head of the family. Their cruelties 
induced some small parties to associate and arm in self- 
defence. Captain Turner and twenty men had, on these 
principles, taken post in a house and defended themselves till 
their ammunition was nearly expended. After which they 
surrendered on receiving assurances that they should be 
treated as prisoners of war. Notwithstanding this solemn 
agreement. Captain Turner and his party were put to instant 
death by Cunningham and the men under his command. 
Soon after this massacre the same party of tories attacked a 
number of the American militia in the district of Ninety-Six, 
commanded by Colonel Hayes, and set fire to the house in 
which they had taken shelter. The only alternative left was 
either to be burned or to surrender themselves prisoners. The 
last being preferred. Colonel Hayes and Captain Daniel Wil- 
liams were hung at once on the pole of a fodder stack. This 
breaking, they both fell, on which Major William Cunning- 
ham cut them into pieces with his own sword ; when turning 
upon the others he continued on them the operations of his 
savage barbarity, till the powers of nature being exhausted, 
and his enfeebled limbs refusing to administer any longer to 
his insatiate fury, he called upon his comrades to complete 
the dreadful work by killing whichsoever of the prisoners 
they pleased. They instantly put to death such of them as 
they personally disliked. Only two fell in action, but four- 
teen were deliberately cut to pieces after their surrender. 
Their names and rank were as follows : Colonel Joseph 
Hayes, Captain Daniel Williams, Lieutenant Christopher 

- Hardy, Lieutenant John Neel, Clement Hancock, Joseph 
Williams, Joseph Irby, senior, Joseph Irby, junior, John 
Milven, James Feris, John Cook, Greaf Irby, Benjamin Good- 

; man, Yancy Saxon. 


About the same time, and under the same influence, emis- 
saries from the British induced the Cherokee Indians to com- 
mence hostilities. Early in the year 1781 General Greene 
had concluded a treaty with them, by which they had en- 
gaged to observe a neutrality. This was attended with the 
beneficial effects of saving the frontier settlements, both of 
North and South Carolina, from their incursions, while the 
inhabitants were left at full liberty to concentrate their force 
against the army under the command of Lord Cornwallis. 
When the co-operation of the Indians could be of the least 
service to the British forces, they were induced to break 
through their engagements of neutrality. They, with a num- 
ber of disguised white men who called themselves the King's 
friends, made an incursion into the district of Ninety-Six, 
massacred some families and burned several houses. Gen- 
eral Pickens collected a party of the American militia and 
penetrated into the settlements of the Cherokees. This he 
accomplished in fourteen days, at the head of three hundred 
and ninety-four horsemen. In that short space he burned 
thirteen towns and villages, killed upwards of forty Indians, 
and took a greater number prisoners. Not one of his party 
was killed, and only two were wounded. None of the expe- 
ditions carried on against the Cherokees had been so rapid 
and decisive as the present one. General Pickens did not 
expend three pounds of ammunition, and yet only three 
Indians escaped after having been once seen. On this occa- 
sion a new and successful mode of fighting the savages was 
introduced. Instead of firing, the American militia rushed 
forward on horseback and charged with drawn swords. This 
was the second time during the American war that the 
Cherokee Indians had been chastised in their own settle- 
ments, in consequence of sufiering themselves to be excited 
by British emissaries to commence hostilities against their 
white neighbors. They again sued for peace in the most sub- 
missive terms, and obtained it after promising that instead of 
listening to the advice of the royalists instigating them to war, 
they would deliver those of them that visited their settle- 
ments on that errand to the authority of the Stata 

In consequence of these civil wars between the whigs and 
tories, the incursions of the savages, and the other calamities 
resulting from the operations of the British and American 
armies, South Carolina exhibited scenes of distress which 
were shocking to humanity. The single district of Ninety- 
Six has been computed by well informed persons residing 
therein, to contain within its limits fourteen hundred widows 
and orphans ; made so by the war. Nor is it wonderful that 
the country was involved in such accumulated distress. The 


American government was suspended, and the British con- 
querors were careless of the civil rights of the inhabitants. 
They conducted as though interior order and police were 
scarcely objects of attention. The will of the strongest was 
the law. Such was the general complexion of those who 
called themselves royalists, that nothing could be expected 
from them but outrages against the peace and order of society. 
Though among the tories in the lower parts of South Caro- 
lina there were gentlemen of honor, principle and humanity, 
yet in the interior and back parts of the State a great propor- 
tion of them was an ignorant unprincipled banditti; to whom 
idleness, licentiousness and deeds of violence were familiar. 
Horse-thieves and others whose crimes had exiled them from 
society, attached themselves to parties of the British. En- 
couraged by their example and instigated by the love of 
plunder, they committed the most extensive depredations. 
Under the cloak of attachment to the old government, they 
covered the basest and most selfish purposes. The necessity 
which their indiscriminate plundering imposed on all good 
men of defending themselves, did infinitely more damage to 
the royal cause than was compensated by all the advantages 
resulting from their friendship. 

As soon as the American army obtained re-possession of 
the country, the inhabitants, after returning to their former al- 
legiance, resolutely put all to the risk in support of independ- 
ence. Though the British, in the career of their conquests, 
had inculcated the necessity and propriety of transferring al- 
legiance from the vanquished to the victor, yet they treated 
with the utmost severity those unfortunate men, when in 
their power, who having once accepted of British protection 
acted on these very principles in afterwards re-joining their 
victorious countrymen. 

Among the sufferers on this score, the illustrious Colonel 
Hayne stands conspicuous. During the siege of Charles- 
town, that gentleman served his country in a corps of militia- 
horse. After the capitulation, there being no American army 
in the State and the prospect of one being both distant and 
uncertain, no alternative was left but either to abandon his 
family and property or to surrender to the conquerors. This 
hard dilemma, together with well-founded information that 
others in similar circumstances had been paroled to their 
plantations, weighed with Colonel Hayne so far as to induce 
a conclusion that instead of waiting to be captured it would be 
both more safe and more honorable to come within the British 
lines and surrender himself a voluntary prisoner. He there- 
fore repaired to Charlestown and offered to bind himself, by 
the honor of an American officer, to do nothing prejudicial to 
+V.Q TivitioU I'ntoi-ocf till tip sVioiild he RYchans-ed. Renorts 


which were made of his superior abilities and influence, uni- 
formly exerted in the American cause, operated with the con- 
querors to refuse him a parole, though they were in the habit 
of daily granting that indulgence to others of the inhabitants. 
To his great astonishment he was told, "that he must either 
become a British subject or submit to close confinement." To 
be arrested and detained in the capital, was to himself not an 
intolerable evil ; but to abandon his family both to the rail- 
ages of the small-pox, a disease then raging in their neighbor- 
hood, and which in a short time after proved mortal to his 
wife and two of his children, and to the insults and depreda- 
tions of the royal army, was too much for a tender husband 
and a fond parent. To acknowledge himself the subject of a 
King, whose government he had from principle renounced, 
was repugnant to his feelings ; but without this he was cut 
off from every prospect of a return to his family. In this em- 
barrassing situation he waited on the author of this history, 
with a declaration to the following eifect : " If the British 
would grant me the indulgence, which we in the day of our 
power gave to their adherents, of removing my family and 
property, I would seek an asylum in the remotest corner of the 
United States rather than submit to their government; but as 
they allow no other alternative than submission or confine- 
ment in the capital, at a distance from my wife and family, 
at a time when they are in the most pressing need of my pres- 
ence and support, I must for the present yield to the de- 
mands of the conquerors. I request you to bear in mind that 
previous to my taking this step, I declare that it is contrary to 
my inclination and forced on me by hard necessity. I never 
will bear arms against my country. My new masters can re- 
quire no service of me but what is enjoined by the old militia- 
law of the province, which substitutes a fine in lieu of per- 
sonal service. That I will pay as the price of my protection. If 
my conduct should be censured by my countrymen, I beg 
that you would remember this conversation and bear wit- 
ness for me, that I do not mean to desert the cause of 

In this state of duress Colonel Hayne subscribed a declara- 
tion of his allegiance to the King of Great Britain, but not 
without expressly objecting to the clause which required him, 
"with his arms to support the royal government." The 
commandant of the garrison, Brigadier-General Paterson, and 
James Simpson, Esquire, Intendant of the British poUce, as- 
sured him that this would never be required; and added fur- 
ther, "that when the regular forces could not defend the coun- 
try, without the aid of its inhabitants, it would be high time 
for the royal army to quit it." 

Having submitted to their government, he readily obtained 


permission to return to his family. In violation of the special 
condition under which he subscribed the declaration of his 
allegiance, he was repeatedly called on to take arms against 
his countrymen, and was finally threatened with close con- 
finement in case of a further refusal. This open breach of con- 
tract, together with the inability of the late conquerors to give 
him that protection which was promised as a compensation 
for his allegiance, the Americans having regained that part of 
the State in which he resided, induced him to consider him- 
self as released from all engagements to the British command- 
ers. The inhabitants of his neighborhood, who had also 
revolted, subscribed a petition to General Pickens, praying 
that Colonel Hayne might be appointed to the command of 
their regiment. Having thus resumed his arms, and the tide 
of conquest being fairly turned in the short space of thirteen 
months after the surrender of Charlestown, he sent out, in 
the month of July, 1781, a small party to reconnoitre. They 
penetrated within seven miles of the capital, took General 
Williamson prisoner, and retreated to the head-quarters of 
the regiment. Such was the anxiety of the British com- 
mandant to rescue General Williamson, that he ordered out 
his whole cavalry on that business. Colonel Hayne unfor- 
tunately fell into their hands. Though he had conducted 
himself peaceably while under the British government, and 
had injured no man, yet for having resumed his arms after 
accepting British protection, he was, when bronght to Charles- 
town, confined in a loathsome provost. At first he was prom- 
ised a trial, and had counsel prepared to justify his conduct 
by the laws of nations and usages of war; but this was finally 
refused. Had he been considered as a British subject, he had 
an iindoubted right to a trial; if as an American officer, to his 
parole; but in violation of every principle of the constitution, 
he was ordered for execution by the arbitrary mandate of 
Lord Rawdon and Lieutenant-Colonel Balfour. 

The royal Lieutenant-Governor Bull, and a great number 
of the inhabitants, both loyalists and Americans, interceded 
for his life. The ladies of Charlestown generally signed a 
petition in his behalf, in which was introduced every delicate 
sentiment that was likely to operate on the gallantry of officers 
or the humanity of men. His children, accompanied by some 
near relations, were presented on their bended knees, as hum- 
ble suitors for their father's life. Such powerful intercessions 
were made in his favor as touched many an unfeeling heart, 
and drew tears from many an hard eye; but Lord Rawdon 
and Lieutenant-Colonel Balfour remained inflexible. 

After his fate was fixed, he was repeatedly visited by his 
friends, and conversed on various subjects with the fortitude 


of a man, a philosopher, and a Christian. He particularly la- 
mented that, on principles of reciprocal retaliation, his execu- 
tion would probably be an introduction to the shedding of 
much innocent blood. His children, who had lost their other 
parent, were brought to him in the place of his confinement, 
and received from his lips the dying advice of an afiectionate 
father. On the last evening of his life he told a friend, "that 
he was no more alarmed at the thoughts of death, than at 
any other occurrence which was necessary and unavoidable." 
He requested those in whom the supreme power was vested, 
to accommodate the mode of his death to his feelings as an 
officer; but this was refused. 

On the morning of the fatal day, on receiving his summons 
to proceed to the place of execution, he delivered some papers 
to his eldest son, a youth of about thirteen years of age: 
"Present," said he, "these papers to Mrs. Edwards, with my 
request that she would forward them to her brother in Con- 
gress. You. will next repair to the place of execution, receive 
my body, and see it decently interred among my forefathers." 
They took a final leave. The Colonel's arms were pinioned, 
and a guard placed round his person. The procession began 
from the Exchange, in the forenoon of the fourth of August, 
1781. The streets were crowded with thousands of anxious 
spectators. He walked to the place of execution with such de- 
cent firmness, composure and dignity, as to awaken the com- 
passion of many, and to command respect from all. There 
was a majesty in his sufferings which rendered him superior 
to the pangs of death. When the city barrier was past, and 
the instrument of his catastrophe appeared full in vieAV, a 
faithful friend by his side observed to him, " that he hoped he 
would exhibit an example of the manner in which an Amer- 
ican can die." He answered with the utmost tranquility, "I 
will endeavor to do so." He ascended the cart with a firm 
step and serene aspect. He inquired of the executioner, who 
was making an attempt to get up to pull the cap over his 
eyes, what he wanted? Upon being informed of his design, 
the colonel replied, "I will save you that trouble," and pulled 
it over himself He was afterwards asked whether he wished 
to say anything; to which he answered,"! will only take leave 
of my friends, and be ready." He then affectionately shook 
hands with three gentlemen, recommended his children to 
their care, and gave the signal for the cart to move. 

Thus fell, in the bloom of life, a brave officer, a worthy 
citizen, a just and upright man: furnishing an example of 
heroism in death that extorted a confession from his enemies, 
"that, though he did not die in a good cause, he must at least 
have acted from a persuasiom of its being so.'' 


Few men stood higher in the estimation of their country- 
men than the illustrious man whose exit has been just de- 
scribed. General Greene demanded from the British Com- 
manders their reasons for this execution. To which he 
received a written answer, signed by N. Balfour, acknowledg- 
ing, "that it took place by the joint order of Lord Rawdon 
and himself, but in consequence of the most express direc- 
tions from Lord Cornwallis to put to death those who should 
be found in arms after being at their own requests received 
as subjects, since the capitulation of Charlestown, and the 
clear conquest of the province in the summer of 1780." 

The regular officers of the continental army presented a 
petition to General Greene, requesting that he would retaliate 
for the execution of Colonel Hayne. By this they voluntarily 
subjected themselves to all the consequences to which, in case 
of capture, they would be exposed. General Greene soon after 
issued a proclamation, threatening to make British officers 
the objects of retaliation. This encouraged the revolted in- 
habitants to continue in arms, and effaced every impression 
that was expected from the fate of Colonel Hayne. The Brit- 
ish interest gained no permanent advantage, Avhile pity and 
revenge sharpened the swords of the countrymen and friends 
of the much beloved sufferer. 

After the British landed in Carolina in 1780, they confined 
some of their first prisoners in the vaults with the dead. When 
their successes had multiplied the number of prisoners, they 
were crowded on board prison-ships, where they suffered every 
inconvenience that could result from putrid air and the want 
of the comforts of life. This was done not only to those who 
surrendered at discretion, but also to the private soldiers who 
were entitled to the benefit of the capitulation of Charlestown. 

The condition of these unfortunate men was truly deplor- 
able. They were crowded on board the prison-ships in such 
numbers that several were obliged to stand up for want of 
room to lie down. The State of South Carolina could afford 
them no supply. Congress could not at that time command 
hard money for their relief. Wine, and such like comforts, 
particularly necessary for the sick in southern climates, could 
not be obtained from the British hospitals. 

Upwards of eight hundred of these brave men, nearly one- 
third of the whole, exhausted by a variety of sufferings, expired 
in the short space of thirteen months' captivity. When a gen- 
eral exchange took place in June, 1781, out of nineteen hun- 
dred taken at the surrender of Charlestown on the 12th of 
May, 1780, and several hundreds more taken afterwards at 
Oamden and at Fishing creek on the 16th and 18th of Au- 
gust of the same year, there were only seven hundred and 

264 HISTORY or the revolution. 

forty restored to the service of their country. It was not by 
deaths alone that the Americans were deprived of their sol- 
diers. Lord Charles Greville Montague, who before the revo- 
lution had been Governor of the province of South Carolina, 
enlisted five hundred and thirty of them in the British ser- 
vice. The distressed continental soldiers were induced to ac- 
cept the offers of Lord Charles Greville Montague in prefer- 
ence to the horrors of a prison-ship, by the specious promise 
that they should be employed in the West Indies, and not 
against their countrymen in the United States. His lordship, 
after completing his regiment, offered the command of it to 
Brigadier-General Moultrie, the senior officer of the prisoners- 
of-war belonging to the continental army, who with becoming 
spirit declined it. 

The continental officers taken at the surrender of Charles- 
town were confined to Haddrell's Point and the vicinity. Far 
from their friends, and destitute of money, they were reduced 
to the greatest straits. Such were the difficulties and severe 
restrictions imposed on this band of patriots that many of them, 
though born in affiuence and habituated to attendance, were 
compelled to do not only the most menial offices for them- 
selves but could scarcely procure the plainest necessaries of 
life. During a captivity of thirteen months, they received no 
more from their country than nine days' pay. These hard- 
ships were not alleviated by those civilities from their conque- 
rors which among modern refined nations have abated the 
horrors of war. They were debarred the liberty of fishing for 
their support, though their great 'leisure and many wants made 
it an object not only as an amusement but as a mean of sup- 
plying their necessities. After bearing all these evils with 
great fortitude they were informed, in the month of March 
17S1, by Lieutenant-Colonel Balfour, that by positive orders 
from Earl CornwalliSj he was to send them to some one of the 
West India Islands. Preparations were made for the execu- 
tion of the mandate; but a general exchange of prisoners, in 
the sovithern department, took place in a few weeks which re- 
leased the prisoners on both sides from captivity. 

The citizens of the town, who adhered to their paroles, were 
treated with great severity. Though they were not allowed 
rations, yet they were debarred from trade, and from exercis- 
ing any profession; and the King's subjects were strictly en- 
joined not to employ them on any pretence. 

Though by the capitulation of Charlestown, in May 1780, 
the inhabitants were entitled to their paroles and a residence 
on their estates with their families; yet in May, 1781, upwards 
of one hundred of them were confined to prison-ships. The 
conquerors did not undertake to justify this step from any 


supposed breach of parole. They affected to hold the pris- 
oners in this state of duress as hostages to secure good treat- 
ment for those of the loyalists who had been captured by the 
Americans. The gentlemen who were confined on this oc- 
casion submitted to their fate with great magnanimity. In- 
stead of repining at their situation, they only regretted, "if it 
should fall to the lot of any or all of them to be made victims, 
agreeably to the menaces of Lieutenant-Colonel Balfour, that 
their blood could not be disposed of more to the advantage of 
the glorious cause in which they had engaged." 

As the war was carried on not to gain a contested point 
from an independent power, but to annihilate the assumed 
independence of the State and to reduce it to its former pro- 
vincial subjection; the conquerors ridiculed the idea of observ- 
ing the capitulation with citizens. They considered that 
measure as the expedient of a day, only proper at the surren- 
der to prevent the effusion of blood, but no longer so when 
their arms were triumphant in the remote extremities of the 
State. Indulgences shown to prisoners were viewed as favors 
derived from the humanity of conquerors, and not as rights 
founded on a capitulation. Persons who remained in the 
character of prisoners, and claimed under that solemn agree- 
ment, were considered as obstinate rebels who meant to thwart 
the views of the royal army. While they wished to be re- 
garded as members of an independent State, they were looked 
upon as vanquished rebels who owed their lives to British 
clemency. In this confusion of sentiments, to reconcile con- 
tradictory claims required uncommon address. The pride of 
conquerors, highly estimating their own moderation; and the 
pride of prisoners, considering themselves as independent free- 
men entitled to respect for their firmness and patriotism, made 
the former trample on the latter and the latter despise the 

It has been already mentioned that in May, 1781, a general 
exchange of prisoners was agreed to, in which the militia on 
both sides were respectively exchanged for each other. Not- 
withstanding every difficulty, a considerable number of the 
inhabitants had perseveringly refused to become British sub- 
jects. These being exchanged, were delivered at the American 
posts in Virginia and Pennsylvania. Great were the exulta- 
tions of the suffering friends of independence, at the prospect 
of their being released from confinement and restored to ac- 
tivity in their country's cause; but these pleasing prospects 
were obscured by the distresses brought on their families by 
this otherwise desirable event, for they were all ordered to quit 
the town and province before the first day of next Augiist. 

The gentlemen, who had been from motives of policy re- 


moved from Charlestown to St. Augustine, as has been already- 
related, obtained their release by this general exchange and 
were delivered at the port of Philadelphia. More than a thou- 
sand persons were exiled from their homes, and thrown on 
the charity of strangers for their support. In retaliation for 
this conduct, Governor Rutledge ordered the Brigadiers of 
militia to drive within the British lines the families of those 
who adhered to the royal cause. The wives and children of 
those inhabitants who, to avoid the resentment of their coun- 
trymen had retreated with the retreating British, were com- 
pelled to take shelter within their posts. In exchange for 
their comfortable farms in the country, many of them were 
reduced in a little time to the necessity of living in clay huts 
in the vicinity of Charlestown. In this forlorn situation num- 
bers of them, destitute of the comforts of life, and overwhelmed 
with diseases, speedily perished. The exiled Americans re- 
ceived generous treatment from some individuals, and also 
from the bounty of Congress; but notwithstanding this libe- 
rality, they suffered many of the evils which result from a 
want of friends and a want of money. Several of the persons 
thus exchanged, and sent to the northern States, were owners 
of landed property in Charlestown. Though by the capitula- 
tion they had an undoubted right to dispose of this for their 
own advantage, yet they were debarred that liberty by an order 
issued on the 11th of July, 1781. 

In consequence of this mandate, the houses of those who 
adhered to the cause of America were, in violation of public 
faith, taken out of their hands, and there was scarce an in- 
stance of compensation being allowed them for this seizure of 
their property. 

The partial re-establishment of British governmentin South 
Carolina was the source of accumulated evils to the steady 
friends of independence ; but they were not the only sufferers. 
The calamities of the years 1780 and 1781, operated exten- 
sively. There was scarcely an inhabitant of the State, how- 
ever obscure in character or remote in situation, whether he 
remained firm to one party or changed with the times, who 
did not partake of the general distress. The adherents to royal 
government were often treated by the British conquerors with 
neglect and contempt — frequently suffered in their property, 
and had many grievances unredressed. Their most essential 
interests were in every stage of the war, and especially at the 
evacuation of Charlestown, and the general treaty of peace, 
sacrificed to political necessity. They had the peculiar mis- 
fortune of suffering from the repeated violation of public faith 
successively pledged for their security. 

The successes that had attended the American arms in 


South Carolina, in the summer of 1781, gave such flattering 
prospects to the friends of independence, that it was judged to 
be a favorable opportunity to detach from the British interest 
in South Carolina those of the inhabitants of the State who 
had joined them in the day of their success. On the 27th of 
September, 1781, Governor Rutledge, therefore, issued a proc- 
lamation, offering them pardon on condition of their doing 
six months militia duty, with the exception of those who had 
taken commissions — signed congratulatory addresses on Brit- 
ish victories — or who had been otherwise active in support of 
their government. In a few weeks several hundreds came 
out of the British lines, and reinforced the American militia. 
Several were now as assiduous in framing excuses for their 
having arranged themselves under the British standard, as 
they had been the year before to apologize for their involuntary 
support of rebellion. "Their wives, their children, and their 
property, made it necessary to make a show of submission to 
the conquerors — They thought the country was subdued, and 
that further resistance was vain — but notwithstanding, at all 
times they wished well to American independence." Such 
was the alacrity with which they joined their countrymen, 
that several, though excepted by the proclamation, cast them- 
selves on the public mercy. They explained their taking 
British commissions into a benevolent design, of rescuing 
their neighbors from more severe officers. For their signing 
addresses of congratulation on British victories, many apolo- 
gies were offered. Some alleged in their behalf "the fear of 
losing their estates — of being refused protection, or of being 
objects of suspicion." Others had never read them ; but they 
all agreed, " that the sentiments contained in these ill-fated 
addresses were at no time the language of their hearts." 

The tranquility that reigned through every part of the State 
gave an opportunity of calling an assembly, the meetings of 
which had been interrupted ever since the reduction of Charles- 
town. Many of the inhabitants who had never submitted to 
the British,and who had been lately delivered as exchanged in 
Virginia and Philadelphia,soon found their way back to South 
Carolina. In their number were most of the late civil offi- 
cers of the State, and members of the Legislature. These 
favorable circumstances, in conjunction with the position of 
the American army, within thirty-six miles of Charlestown, 
pointed out the propriety of convening a Legislature. In the 
close of the year 1781, Governor Rutledge, by virtue of the 
extraordinary power delegated to him before the surrender of 
Charlestown, issued wrhs for a new election. These were or- 
dered to be held in the usual places where it was practicable, 
and in other cases as near as safety and other circumstances 


would permit. By the same authority it was ordered, that at 
the election the votes of such only should be received as had 
never taken British protection, or who, having taken it, had 
notwithstanding rejoined their countrymen on or before the 
27th of September, 1781. Other persons, though residents, 
were not considered as freemen of the State, or entitled to the 
full privilege of citizenship. A General Assembly was chosen, 
and convened in January, 1782, at Jacksonborough, a small 
village situated on Edisto river, about twenty-five miles from 
the sea, and thirty-five from Charlestown. 

By the rotation established, it became necessary to choose a 
new Governor. The suffrages of a majority were in the first 
instance in favor of Christopher Gadsden, who declined the 

The General Assembly then elected John Mathews Gov- 
ernor, filled up vacancies in the different departments, and re- 
established civil government in all its branches. They also 
delegated to the Governor or Commander-in-Chief the same 
extensive powers, with similar limitation, which had been en- 
trusted to his predecessor, "of doing all matters and things 
which Avere judged expedient and necessary to secure the lib- 
erty, safety, and happiness of the State." Hitherto the Legis- 
lature of the State had given every man the free liberty of 
choosing his side and retaining his property ; but the conduct 
of the British, while they had the ascendancy in the State, 
was so contrary to this humane mode of carrying on war, that 
on this occasion an opposite line of policy was adopted. 

Laws were passed for confiscating the estates, and banish- 
ing the persons of the active decided friends of British gov- 
ernment, and for amercing the estates of others, as a substitu- 
tion for their personal services of which, the country had been 
deprived. Two hundred and thirty-seven persons or estates 
were included in the first class, and forty-eight in the last. 
Those whose submission appeared to be necessary and una- 
voidable, and who did not voluntarily aid or abet the govern- 
ment of the conquerers, were generally overlooked. These 
laws, though contrary to the constitution and every principle 
of republican government, passed by large majorities. The 
subjects of them were condemned without a hearing or even 
the form of a trial. Some of the members who voted for them 
were influenced by a spirit of revenge, and others by avarice; 
but these were far short of a majority. That was obtained by 
the accession of numbers of upright and honorable principles, 
who believed that constitution and lav/s in cases of extremity 
must both yield to self-preservation. Such considered the con- 
fiscation of tory property in the nature 'of a forced loan for pur- 
poses of indispensable necessity. It is certain that without it the 


State had no resources for raising or supporting a military- 
force for self-defence. These laws were passed in. February, 
.1782, while the Assembly was under an impression that the 
war would be continued by Great Britain. To meet it was 
impossible without making free with the property of British 
adherents contrary to the usual forms of law. The obstinacy 
of the British in continuing a hopeless war, aggravated the 
distresses of their friends. Soon after these laws were passed, 
reports were circulated that the British intended soon to with- 
draw from Charlestown. 

The apprehension of this gave a serious alarm to thcfse of 
the inhabitants who adhered to their interest. There was no 
part of South Carolina without the British lines which was 
not formally in the peace of the State, excepting a settlement 
on Little Peedee. Major Ganey, at the head of some loyalists 
residing near that river, had refused to do militia duty under 
General Marion, the Brigadier of the district. They defended 
themselves in the swamps, and from thence frequently sallied 
to the distress of the whig inhabitants of the adjacent coun- 
try. On the 28th of April, 1781, a party of them commanded 
by Captain Jones, surrounded and set fire to the house of Col. 
Kolb, a respectable American militia officer. He, after re- 
ceiving assurances of being treated as a prisoner of war, sur- 
rendered. Nevertheless he was put to instant death in the 
presence of his wife and children. When the British had lost 
ground in 1781, General Marion made a treaty of neutrality 
with them. In the summer of 1782 this was formerly re- 
newed. Though the British interest was entirely ruined, and 
their departure from Charlestown soon expected, such was 
the generosity of the government, that it gave them a full 
pardon for all treasons committed against the State, the secu- 
rity of their property, and the protection of the laws, on the 
condition of their delivering up their plunder, abjuring the 
King of Great Britain, and demeaning themselves as peaceable 
citizens of the State. An alternative was oifered to those who 
disapproved of these articles, to go within the British lines, 
and to carry off or sell their property. These lenient meas- 
ures brought over the disaffected people of the settlement. 
Several of them not long after fought bravely under General 
Marion, and the whole conducted themselves peaceably. 
Regularity, order and government took the place of reciprocal 
depredations and hostilities. 

On the proposed evacuation of Charlestown, the merchants 
who came with the British were in a disagreeable predica- 
ment. They had entered into extensive commercial engage- 
ments in the short interval of the British sway. Those of 
their debtors who were without the lines, were not subject to 


their jurisdiction ; those who were within were unable to pay. 
It was supposed that all transfers of property, by the authority 
of the board of police, would be null and void on the depart- 
ure of the British from the State. Environed with difficul- 
ties, and threatened with bankruptcy, if they should leave the 
State along with the garrison, they applied to General Leslie 
for leave to negotiate for themselves. A deputation of their 
body waited on Governor Mathews, and obtained from him 
permission to reside in South Carolina for eighteen months 
after the evacuation, with the full liberty of disposing of their 
stock of goods on hand, and of collecting the debts already 
due to them. This indulgence was extended to a longer term 
by the Legislature at their next meeting, before any infor- 
mation arrived that the preliminary articles of peace were 

When the evacuation of Charlestown drew nigh, it was ap- 
prehended by the inhabitants, that the British army, on its de- 
parture, would carry off with them some thousands of negroes 
which were within their lines. To prevent this. Governor 
Mathews wrote a letter to General Leslie, dated August 17th, 
1782, in which he informed him, " that if the property of the 
citizens of South Carolina was carried otf from its owners by 
the British army, he should seize on the debts due to the 
British merchants — and to the confiscated estates — and the 
claims on those estates by marriage settlements — which,three 
articles were not included in the confiscation act." This con- 
ditional resolution operated as a check on some, so as to re- 
strain their avidity for plunder, and induced General Leslie 
to propose a negotiation for securing the property of both par- 
ties. After sundry conversations, the commissioners on both 
sides, on the 10th of October, 1782, ratified a compact on this 
subject, by which it was agreed with a few exceptions, that 
all the slaves of the citizens of South Carolina then in the 
power of the British General Leslie, should be restored to their 
former owners, and that the faith of the State should be 
pledged that no further confiscation or sequestration of pro- 
perty belonging or pledged to royalists should take place; that 
all such should be at full liberty to sue for, recover and dis- 
pose of their property in the same manner as citizens — that 
the slaves so returned should not be punished by the State; 
and that it should be recommended to their masters to forgive 
them — that Edward Blake and Roger Parker Saunders should 
be permitted,on their parole of honor, to reside in Charlestown 
to assist in the execution of the article respecting the delivery 
of negroes to the citizens. 

In consequence of this agreement, Governor Mathews gave 
a commission and a flag to Thomas Ferguson and Thomas 


Waring, to reside near the British lines, with instructions to 
receive such negroes as should be delivered from the garrison. 
Edward Blake and Roger Parker Saunders had also a com- 
mission and a flag given them to reside in Charlestown, and 
forward the delivery of the negroes to the gentlemen who 
were waiting to receive them without the garrison. Governor 
Mathews requested the citizens of the State to attend for the 
purpose of receiving their negroes, and earnestly entreated 
that they would forgive them for having deserted their sei-vice 
and joined the British. Great were the expectations of the 
sufi"ering inhabitants that they would soon obtain re-posses- 
sion of their property ; but these delusive hopes were of short 
duration. Notwithstanding the solemnity with which the 
compact had been ratified, it was so far evaded as to be in a 
great measure ineffectual for the end proposed. 

Edward Blake and Roger Parker Saunders, having waited 
on General Leslie, were permitted to examine the fleet bound 
to St. Augustine; but were not sufiered to examine any ves- 
sel that wore the King's pendant. Instead of an examination, 
the word of the commanding officer to restore all the slaves 
that were on board, in violation of the compact, was offered 
as an equivalent. In their search of the Augustine fleet, they 
found and claimed one hundred and thirty-six negroes. When 
they attended to receive them on shore, they were surprised 
to find no more than seventy-three landed for delivery. They 
then claimed this small residue, of the original number, to be 
forwarded to the other commissioners without the lines; but 
they were informed by General Leslie, that no negroes would 
be delivered till three soldiers were restored that had been 
taken by a party of General Greene's army. 

This was the unsuccessful termination of a benevolent 
scheme originally calculated for mitigating the calamities of 
war. Motives of humanity, together with the sacred obliga- 
tion of the provisional articles of peace, restrained the State 
from extending its confiscation laws. Instead of adding to 
the Ust of the unhappy sufferers on that score, the successive 
assemblies diminished their number. 

The prospects of gain from the sale of plundered negroes 
were too seducing to be resisted by the officers, privates, and 
followers of the British army. On their departure from 
Charlestown upwards of eight hundred slaves, who had been 
employed in the engineer department, were shipped off" for the 
West Indies. It was said, and believed, that these were taken 
by the direction and sold for the benefit of Lieutenant-Colonel 
Moncrieif. The slaves carrit3d off" by the chief engineer were 
but a small part of the whole taken- away at the evacuation, 
but their number is very inconsiderable when compared with 


the thousands that were lost from the first to the last of the 
war. It has been computed by good judges, that between the 
years 1775 and 1783, the State of South Carolina lost twenty- 
five thousand negroes. 

The evacuation, though officially announced by General 
Leslie on the 7th of Augustas a measure soon to be adopted, 
did not take place till the 14th of December, 1783. On that 
and the succeeding days the British went on board their 
shipping, and the town was entered by Governor Mathews and 
the American army without any confusion or disorder. Those 
who remained in Charlestown felt themselves happy in being 
delivered from the severities of a garrison life. The exiled 
citizens experienced sensations more easily conceived than 
expressed, on returning to their houses and estates. To crown 
their other blessings, provisional articles of peace were soon 
announced to have been signed at Paris, on the 13th of No- 
vember, 1782, by which the King of Great Britain acknowl- 
edged " the United States of New Hampshire, Massachusetts, 
Connecticut, Rhode Island, New York, New Jersey, Pennsyl- 
vania, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, South 
Carolina, and Georgia, to be free, sovereign and independent 
States ; that he treated with them as such ; and for himself, 
his heirs, and successors, relinquished all claims to the gov- 
ernment, proprietary or territorial rights of the same." The 
patriot exulted in the acknowledged independence of his 
country. The soldier rejoiced that the toils of war were 
ended, and the objects of it fully obtained. The farmer re- 
doubled his industry, from the pleasing conviction that the 
produce of his labor would be secured to him without any 
danger from British bayonets or American impress-warrants. 
Cheerfulness and good humor took possession of minds that, 
during seven years, had been continually occupied with 
anxiety and distress. The army was soon after disbanded, 
Such at that time was the situation of the finances of the 
United States, that Congress was scarcely able to discharge 
to that virtuous, army, which with the price of their blood had 
secured their independence, as much of the arrears of many 
years' pay as was sufficient to defray their expenses in return- 
ing to their respective habitations. The laurels they had 
dearly earned, the applause of their countrymen which they 
had eminently obtained, and the plaudits of their consciences 
which they honestly possessed, were almost the only rewards 
they carried home at the termination of a war in which many 
had injured their constitutions, and all had diminished their 
fortunes. Sympathizing with the distresses of their country- 
men — sensible of their inability to pay them their stipulated 
due — and confiding in their justice to make them future retri- 


bution, they cheerfully relinquished the uniform of the mili- 
tary for the plain garb of the citizen. The private soldier 
exchanged his bayonet and firelock for the implements of 
husbandry, and betook himself to rural occupations. Subal- 
terns, captainsjfield and general officers returned with pleasure 
to their ancient civil employments. 

The citizens, instead of repining at their losses, generally 
set themselves to repair them by diligence and economy. The 
continental officers who had served in the State, and whose 
bravery and exertions had rendered them conspicuous, were 
so well received by the ladies, that several of them had their 
gallantry rewarded by the possession of some of the finest 
women and greatest fortunes in South Carolina. The unfor- 
tunate adherents to royal government were treated by those 
in power with moderation and lenity. The legislature per- 
mitted the greater part of the exiles to return. These were 
divided into three classes. Thirty-one were fully restored to 
their property and citizenship, thirty-three were disqualified 
from holding any place of trust within the State for the space 
of seven years, and they, with sixty-two others, were relieved 
from total confiscation on the condition of their paying twelve 
per cent, on the equitable value of their property. Though 
the State labored under an immense load of public debt, con- 
tracted during the war, it generously restored confiscated pro- 
perty in its actual possession to an amount very little short of 
half a million of pounds sterling. 

Though the war was ended, some address was necessary 
to compose the minds of the people. Some of those who 
under every discouragement had steadily adhered to the cause 
of independence, took to themselves the appellation of the 
virtuous few, and looked down with contempt on such of 
their fellow-citizens as had conformed their allegiance to ex- 
isting circumstances. A disposition to proscribe and banish 
persons of the latter description showed itself under the auspi- 
ces of self-constituted committees ; but the weight of govern- 
ment and the influence of the best informed citizens, was 
successfully exerted to counteract it. The hard duty of sub- 
duing private feelings 'and of forgetting personal injuries, and 
insults, for the public good, was yet to be performed. Edanus 
Bilrke, an Irish gentleman, who, with the gallantry charac- 
teristic of his nation, came from the West Indies at the com- 
mencement of the revolution as a volunteer to fight for American 
liberty, generously undertook to advocate the cause of those 
who, in the hour of danger, had by a change of allegiance 
sought protection from the present conqueror. In a well 
written pamphlet he demonstrated from history that such 
changes were common, and that by the laws of nature and 


reason, allegiance and protection were reciprocal; and that 
the former ceased where the latter either was not or from cir- 
cumstances could not be given. He advocated the policy of 
a general amnesty, and of forgetting all that had taken place 
in the fervor of the revolutionary war. These sentiments ably 
advocated by Mr. Burke, and promptly supported by the con- 
stituted authorities and the most enlightened patriots, gradu- 
ally prevailed. Political distinctions ceased. Bj?^ forbearance, 
moderation, and good sense, the appellations of congress-men 
and king's-men were soon forgotten, and both joined heartily 
in promoting the interests of their common country. 

E A. M S AY'S 




TO THE YEAR 1808. 


"The Muse of History has been bo much in love with Mars, that she has seldom conTeraed 
with Minerva." — Henry. 






FROM 1670 TO 1808. 


The first settlers of South Carolina were of different religious 
persuasions. None had any particular connection with gov- 
ernment; nor had any sect legal pre-eminence over another.* 

This state of things continued for twenty-eight years. In 
that early period of the province divine service was seldom 
publicly performed beyond the limits of Charlcstown, with the 
exception of an independent church formed near Dorchester 
in 1696. The inhabitants of the province were nevertheless 
kept in a state of social order ; for they generally believed in 
a God, a future state of rewards and punishments, the moral 
obhgation of the decalogue, and in the divine authority of the 
Old and New Testaments. The two first Acts of the Legisla- 
ture which have been found in the records of the Secretary's 
office " enjoined the observance of the Lord's day, commonly 
called Sunday;" and prohibited sundry gross immoralities par- 
ticularly " idleness, drunkenness, and swearing." Thus far 
the government aided religion in the infant colony. In the 
year 1698, one step further was taken by an Act "to settle a main- 
tenance on a minister of the Church of England in Charles- 
town." This excited neither suspicion nor alarm among the 
dissenters, for the minister in whose favor the law operated 
was a worthy good man ; and the small sum allowed him was 
inadequate to his services. The precedent thus set by the 
Legislature being acquiesced in by the people paved the way 
for an ecclesiastical establishment. In the year 1704 when 
the white population of South Carolina was between 5000 and 
6000, when the Episcopalians had only one church in the pro- 
vince and the dissenters three in Charlestown and one in the 
country, the former were so far favored as to obtain a legal 
establishment. Most of the proprietors and public officers of 

* The New-England plan of co-extending settlements and religious instruction 
by making a meeting house, and a minister, appendages to every new town was 
far from being common in Carolina; but was substantially adopted in some cases. 
The New-Englanders near Dorchester, the Irish at Williamsburg, the Swiss 
at Purysburgh, the French at New-Bourdeaux all brought their ministers with 
them, and each of these groupes had the benefits of religious instruction from the 
time they becatrie Carolinians. 

the province and particularly the Govenor Sir Nathaniel John- 
son, were zealously attached to the Church of England. Be- 
lieving in the current creed of the times that an established 
rehgion was essential to the support of civil government, they 
concerted measures for endowing the church of the mother 
country and advancing it in South Carolina to a legal pre-em- 
inence. Preparatory thereto they promoted the election of 
members of that church to a seat in the provincial Legislature, 
and succeeded by surprise so far as to obtain a majority. The 
recently elected members soon after they entered on their legis- 
lative functions took measures for perpetuating the power they 
had thus obtained; for they enacted a law "which made it 
necessary for all persons thereafter chosen members of the com- 
mons, house of assembly, to conform to the religious worship 
of the church of England and to receive the sacrament of the 
Lord's supper according to the rights and usages of that 
church.'' This Act passed the lower house by a majority of 
only one vote. It virtually excluded from a seat in the Legis- 
lature all who were dissenters, erected an aristocracy, and gave 
a monopoly of power to one sect though far from being a ma- 
j ority of the inhabitants. The usual consequences followed. 
Animosities took place and spread in every direction. Mod- 
erate men of the favored church considered the law as impol- 
itic and hostile to the prosperity of the province. Dissenters 
of all denominations made a common cause in endeavoring to 
obtain its repeal. The inhabitants of Colleton county, who 
were mostly dissenters, drew up a statement of their grievan- 
ces which they transmitted by John Ash to the proprietors 
praying their lordships to repeal the oppressive Act Ash being 
coldly received, and despairing of relief from those to whom he 
was sent, determined to address himself to the Enghsh nation 
ihrough the medium of the press; but death prevented the 
execution of his design. The dissenters, in two years after, 
made another effort to obtain a repeal of the obnoxious law. 
They drew up a petition and sent it by Joseph Boone to be 
presented to the House of Lords in England. In this they 
severely animadverted on the law, its authors and abettors. 
In consequence of their application a vote was passed " that 
the Act complained of was founded on falsity in matter of 
fact — was repugnant to the laws of England — contrary to 
the charter of the proprietors — was an encouragement to athe- 
ism and irreligion — destructive to trade, and tended to the de- 
population and ruin of the province." The Lords also ad 
dressed Queen Anne, beseeching her " to use the most effectual 
methods to deliver the province from the arbitrary oppression 
under which it lay and to order the authors thereof to be pros- 
ecuted according to law." To which her majesty replied, " that 

FROM 1670 TO 1808. 5 

she would do all in her power to relieve her subjects in Caro- 
lina and protect them in their just rights." 

Though the infant establishment of the Church of England 
was thus frowned upon by the ruling powers in England, and 
was disagreeable to a majority of the inhabitants of Carolina, 
yet no further steps were taken for restoring to dissenters their 
equal rights. The Episcopal party continued to maintain their 
ascendency in the assembly, and made legislative provision 
for extending and maintaining their mode of worship. In two 
years the colony was divided into ten parishes: St. Philips, 
Charlestown, Christ Church, St. Thomas, St John, St. James, 
St. Andrews, St Dennis, St. Pauls, St Bartholomews, St 
James Santee and each parish was made a corporation. Some 
of these were afterwards subdivided, and others occasionally 
formed as the population extended. Money was provided by 
law for building and repairing churches ; lands were provided 
by donation, purchase, or grants from the proprietors, at public 
expense, for glebes and church yards ; — salaries for the different 
rectors, clerks, and sextons of the established parishes were 
fixed and made payable out of the provincial treasury. Le- 
gislative acts were passed for the encouragement of Episcopal 
clergymen to settle in the province, and exercise their clerical 
functions in the several parishes designated by law. To such 
£25 was paid out of the public treasury immediately on their 
arrival in Carolina, and their annual legal salary commenced 
from the same period in case they were afterwards elected 
rectors of any of the established parishes by the resident in- 
habitants who were members of the Church of England. 

This state of things with but little variation continued for 
seventy years, and as long as the province remained subject to 
Great Britain. In the course of that period, twenty-four par- 
ishes were laid off. Most of these were in the maritime dis- 
tricts and none more than ninety miles from the sea-coast 

The religious establishment which enjoyed so many and 
such highly distinguished privileges, was mildly administered. 
A free toleration was enjoyed by all dissenters. The law which 
excluded them from a seat in the Legislature was soon repealed 
by the Provincial Assembly. The friendship of the mother 
church, the patronage of government, and the legal provision 
made for clergymen, though partial and confined to one sect, 
were useful as means of introducing more learned ecclesiastics 
than would probably have been procured by the unassisted 
efibrts of the first settlers. Religion assumed a visible form, 
and contributed its influence in softening the manners of dis- 
persed colonists, who from the want of school-masters and 
clergymen were in danger of degenerating into savages. The 
prospect of attaining these advantages had a powerful influence 


with the members of assembly in favor of an establishment. 
They saw with regret the increasing inhabitants destitute of 
public instructors, and knew their inability to reward or even 
to procure them. The society which about that time was incor- 
porated in England for propagating the gospel in foreign parts, 
was able and willing to assist the infant colonies, both with 
ministers and the means of supporting them ; but that could 
only be done in the mode of worship prescribed by the church 
of England. To obtain their aid, an establishment of the same 
form of public worship in the colony which prevailed in the 
parent state was deemed a prudential measure. The expected 
consequences followed. The society, on apphcation, sent out 
ministers to Carolina and for a long time assisted to maintain 
them. They generally paid fifty pounds sterhng to their mis- 
sionaries; and besides, made valuable donations of books to 
be distributed by them or kept as parochial libraries. The 
Reverend Mr. Thomas, whose descendants of the fourth or 
fifth generation constitute a part of the inhabitants, was the 
first missionary sent out by the Society. 

The number of Episcopal Clergyman who setded in Caro- 
lina anterior to 1731, is not known; but from that year till 
1775, when the revolution commenced, their aggregate num- 
ber was one hundred and two.* Most of them were men of 
regular education. Such of these and of others as arrived for 
nearly the first half of the 18th century were generally sent 
out as missionaries by the society for propagating the gospel 

» List of the clergy of the Protestant Episcopal Church in South Carolina sub- 
sequent to 1730, with the date of their arrival. The Rev. Messrs. Thomas Hasel, 
"William Guy, Stephen Coulet, Joseph Hooper, Francis Varnod, John I. Tissot, 
William Cotes, arrived in 1731 ; Daniel Dwight, Lewis Jones, Andrew Leslie, 
Joseph Buguiou, Timothy Mellichamp, Thomas Morrit, in 1732; Thomas Thomp- 
son, John Fulton, in 1733; Robert Gowrie, Lawrence O'Neill, in 1734 ,_Peter 
Duplessis, in 1736 ; John Fordyce, William Orr, in 1737 ; Stephen Roe, Robert 
Small, in 1738; Levi Durand, in 1741; William M. Gilchrist, in 1742; Samuel 
Quincy, Charles Bosche, Alexander Garden, Jun., in 1744; Henry Chifielle, in 
1745; Robert Betbam, in 1746; Alexander Keith, in 1747; Richard St. John, in 
174S ; Robert Stone, Robert Gumming, John Giessendaner, in 1750 ; John Rowand, 
in 1751 ; Michael Smith, in 1753; William Langhorne, William Peasely, Charles 
Martin, James Harrison, Richard Clarke, Alexander Baron, in 1754 ; Jonathan 

Copp, Robert Barron. John Andrews, Jenkin Lewis, in 1756; Sergeant, 

Samuel Fairweather, Robert Smith, in 1758; Robert Cooper, Samuel Warren, 
John Tonge, in 1759 ; Abraham Imer, in 1761 ; Joseph Stokes, Joseph Dacre Wil- 
ton, Otispring Pearce, Dormer, in 1762; John Greene, Samuel Drake, George 

Skeen, John Evans, William Teale, in 1763; Isaac Amory, Robert Dunscomb, 

in 1765; Samuel Hart, James Crallan, John Hockley, John Fevrier, Dawson, 

Lousdle, in 1766 ; Tourqand, Charles Woodmason, Streaker, 1767; 

Thomas Panton, John Lewis, Richard Farmer, Robert Purcell, Thomas Morgan,^ 
James Pierce, in 1769; John Bullman, Henry Purcell, D. D., Edward Ellington, 

in 1770 ; Alexander Findlay, in 1771 ; Villette, Scliquab, Thomas Walker,' 

Steward, Edward Jenkins, in 1772; Smith, Davis, Charles R 

Moreau, m 1773 ; Dundas, in 1774 ; Benjamin Blackburn, in 1775. 

The following clergymen have arrived since the revolution- Thomas Jones, 
Thomas Frost, Charles Lewis, Thomas IMills, William Blackwall Fennel Bowenj 

Stephen Sykes, William Jones, Graham, Matthew Tate - Gates, William 

Smith, Pogson, Cotton, Woodbridge, William Best, William Nixo"' 

FROM 1670 TO 1808. 7 

in foreign parts, and with a few exceptions they continued to 
preserve the good moral characters they all brought out with 
them. For some years before the revolution the number of 
officiating clergymen, at one and the same time, varied from 
twelve to twenty. Of the whole there was not a single native 
of Carolina. Two or three are said to have been born in the 
northern provinces, but ail the rest were Europeans. 

In countries where ecclesiastics have an official agency in 
the government, their history is additionally important as it is 
blended with the civil police. This was at no time the .case 
in South Carolina. The people, both of the province and 
State, were always averse to the exercise of any civil power 
by ecclesiastics. Clergymen enjoyed the rights of British sub- 
jects or of American citizens; hut at no time any distinguish- 
ing privileges by virtue of their office. 

This jealousy has been continued under every form of 
government. The clergy under the present constitution are 
deprived of one of the rights of common citizens ; for they are 
declared "to be ineligible to the office of Governor, Lieuten- 
ant-Governor, or to a seat in the Senate or House of Represen- 
tatives.'' Though they derive no emoluments from the State, 
they are subjected to this disqualification on the ground "that 
they should not be diverted from the great duties of their 

The same disposition manifested itself under the former 
order of things ; for coeval with the establishment of the church 
of England, was the appointment of a board of commissioners 
by which it was enacted that twenty lay persons be consti- 
tuted a corporation ; who, in addition to a general superinten- 
dency over the temporal concerns of all the parochial churches, 
should exercise ecclesiastical jurisdiction, with full powers to 
deprive ministers of their livings at pleasure; not for immor- 
ality only, but also for imprudence, or on account of unrea- 
sonable prejudices taken against them. This was in fact taking 
the ecclesiastical jurisdiction out of the hands of the bishop 
of London, in whose diocese the whole British colonies in 
America were included, and transfering it to a select portion 
of the laity in Carolina. No record nor even tradition has 
reached us that these extraordinary powers were improperly 
used. They were in the first instance conferred on the fol- 
lowing persons, who were highly esteemed by the people ; 
Sir Nathaniel Johnson, Thomas Broughton, Nicholas Trott, 
Robert Gibbes, Henry Noble, Ralph Izard, James Risbee, 
William Rhett, George Logan, Arthur Middleton, David Davis, 
Thomas Barton, John Abraham Motte, Robert Seabrook, Hugh 
Hext, John Woodward, Joseph Page, John Ashby, Richard 
Beresford, Thomas Wilkinson, Jonathan Fitch, William Bull, 
Rene Ravenel, and Philip Gendron. 


The institution of lay commissioners with such ample 
powers was disapproved by several in Carolina, and by more 
in England. The society for propagating the gospel in foreign 
parts, at a meeting in St. Paul's church, London, resolved not 
to send any missionaries to Carolina until the clauses relating 
to these extraordinary powers of the lay commissioners were 

The government of the established church assumed another 
form about the year 1733. Alexander Garden was then ap- 
pointed by the bishop of London to be his commissary; and 
as such to exercise spiritual and ecclesiastical jurisdiction 
within the provinces of North Carolina, South Carolina, Geor- 
gia, and the island of New Providence. His strict morals and 
steady adherence to all the forms of the Episcopal church 
qualified him in many respects for this high office. It was 
his duty to watch not only over the morals of the clergy, but 
to enforce their observance of the rules and forms prescribed 
by the church. In the former case he had all good men with 
him, for he was steady, strict, and impartial. In the discharge 
of the latter he was involved in a most unpleasant controversy 
with George Whitefield. This celebrated pulpit orator, edu- 
cated in the church of England and ordained by the bishop 
of Gloucester, was in common with other Episcopal clergymen, 
under obligations to obey the canons of the church. These 
enjoin "the use of the form of prayer prescribed in the book 
of common prayer and of no other." Though Whitefield 
possessed an high esteem for these prayers, and always used 
them when he officiated in Episcopal churches; yet being 
often called upon to preach to large crowds, many of whom 
neither possessed nor knew how to use the hook of common 
prayer in public worship, he departed from the rules of his 
church and performed divine service in the extempore mode 
usually practiced among non-Episcopalians. This was un- 
questionably an offence against the church of which he pro- 
fessed to be a member, and subjected him to its censures; but 
he took no guilt to himself, as being conscious that he was 
influenced by no selfish views nor improper motives, and that 
he was acting in subserviency to the great and benevolent 
purposes for which all churches were instituted. While the 
official duty of the commissary compelled him to enforce, 
among the members of the Episcopal church, an observance 
of its established forms; the expanded and liberal mind of 
Whitefield led him occasionally to set at nought all forms 
while he pursued the substance in the most direct practicable 
mode of t)btaining it. His aim was to do the most extensive 
possible good; and therefore he was willing to preach, if cir- 
cumstances required, in meeting houses, or even in the open 
air as well as in consecrated churches. Wherever he found 

FROM 1670 TO 1808. 9 

human beings desirous of religious instruction he readily 
preached to them, and prayed with them, either as the book 
of common prayer prescribed, or without any form whatever, 
as was deemed for the present most expedient. After he had 
indulged himself in these aberrations from the prescribed rules 
of his church, he was cited by commissary Garden to appear 
before the ecclesiastical court in the parish church of St. Philips 
on the 15th of July, 1740, to answer for the same. The result 
was a sentence of the court for suspending George Whitefield 
from his ministerial office.* 

While this prosecution was pending, and for thirty years 
after, Whiteiield was preaching almost daily to crowded con- 
gregations. So charmed were the people with his eloquence, 
that frequentljr no house could contain his hearers. The 
oftener he preached, the keener were their desires to hear him 
again. As a theologian reasoner, or writer of sermons, he had 
many superiors; but as an orator for impressing the heart, 

*The particulars of this novel and interesting trial, taken from the records of the 
courtj were as follows: The first step was a citation from Commissary Garden, 
calling upon George Whitefield " to answer to certain articles or interrogatories 
which were to be objected and ministered to him concerning the mere health of 
bis soul and the reformation and correction of his manners and excesses ; and 
chiefly for omitting to use the form of prayer prescribed in the communion book." 
Whitefield appeared in court on the day appointed, but protested against the 
admission of any articles against him, alleging that he doubted the authority of 
the court to proceed in the cause, and prayed for time to exhibit his objections. 
This was granted. At the next meeting of the court he tendered exceptions in 
writing, ''in recusation of the judge." At the same time he proposed to refer the 
causes of his recusation against the judge to six diflTerent arbitrators, three of 
whom to be chosen by the said Alexander Garden. A replication to these excep- 
tions was made by "William Smith, and the relevancy of the exceptions was argued 
before the court by Andrew Rutledge in behalf of George Whitefield, and the con- 
trary was argued by James Greeme. The court, consisting of the Commissary 
and the Rev. Messrs. Guy, Mellichamp, Roe and Orr, clergymen assistants, unan- 
imously decreed "that the exceptions be repelled." From this determination 
George Whitefield appealed to the Lords Commissioners appointed by the King 
for receiving and hearing appeals in spiritual causes, from his majesty's planta- 
tions in America. This was granted, and a year and a day allowed for prosecut- 
ing the appeal and hearing the result. It was ordered that in the interim all fur- 
ther proceedings should be staid. After the expiration of the limited time it was 
certified by the register of the court that no prohibition whatever from further 
proceedings in the said cause, nor any decree or determination of any superior 
court, had been interposed, and therefore on motion the business was resumed as 
if no appeal had been made. Due notice was given to George Whitefield to attend, 
but as he did not appear, the following articles and interrogatories were, after a 
proper pause, objected to him as if he had been present. "Imprimis, we article 
and object to you the said George Whitefield, that you were and are a minister 
in holy orders iis deacon and priest, and that when you were admitted into the 
ministry you did, pursuant to the thirty-sixth canon of the canons and constitu- 
tions ecclesiastical, subscribe to the following articles : " That the book of common 
prayer, and of ordering of bishops, priests and deacons, containeth in it nothing 
contrary to the word of God; and that it may lawfully so be used, and that he 
himself will use the form in the said book prescribed in public prayers and admm- 
istration of the sacraments, and none other."— Item, we article and object that 
you, the said George Whitefield, do believe and have heard say, that by the thirty- 
eighth canon of the canons and constitutions ecclesiastical, it is provided, ordajned 
and decreed, "that if any minister, after he hath once subscribed the aforesaid 
article, shall omit the form of prayer prescribed in the communion book, let him 


moving the passions, and for abashing, confounding, and 
beating down vice and immorality, he was exceeded by none. 
The unbounded applause he met with from men, and espe- 
cially from women, was sufficient to have intoxicated him; 
nor was it wholly without effect, for he was but a man. As 
to wealth, power, pleasure, honor, or the ordinary pursuits of 
the vulgar great, he soared above their influence. All his popu- 
larity, and all his powers, as the greatest pulpit orator of the 
age, were employed by him in the capacity of an itinerant 
minister for advancing the present and future happiness of 
mankind, without regard to sect, party or denomination. Caro- 
lina was frequently the scene of his ministerial labors; and 
the religion of the province owed much to his zeal, diligence, 
and eloquence. It was also much indebted to that steady, 
inflexible disciplinarian, Commissary Garden. From the dif- 
ferent temperaments of their minds, the one thought it his 
bounden duty to do what the other conceived it to be equally 

be suspended; and if after a month he do not reform and submit himself, let him 
be excommunicated ; and then if he do not submit himself within the space of 
another month, let him be deposed from the ministry." Item, we article and 
object, that notwithstanding the premises in the foregoing articles mentioned and 
deduced, you the said George Whitefield, on diverse Sundays or Lord's days and 
week days, you have oiRciated as a minister in diverse meeting-houses, and more 
particularly in that commonly called the Presbyterian or Independent meeting- 
house in Charlestown, by praying and preaching to public congregations, and at 
such times have omitted to use the form of prayer prescribed in the communion 
or common prayer book, in contempt of the laws, canons and constitutions eccle- 
siastical aforesaid." Item, we article and object to you the said George White- 
field, that by reason of the premises in the foregoing articles deduced, you have 
incurred canonical punishment and censure, and were and are by us and our 
authority canonically to be punished, and to which and every part of which arti- 
cles, we will and require you the said George Whitefield, to make true, plain, full, 
and faithful answer." 

Successive adjournments were made to give time for the answer of George 
Whitefield, but he neither appeared nor put in any answer." The facts of his 
frequently preaching in dissenting meeting-houses without using the forms of 
prayer prescribed by the book of common prayer, were proved by Hugh Ander- 
son, Stephen Hartley, and John Redman. A final decree, after a full recital of all 
facts, was pronounced in these words : Therefore we, Alexander Garden, the judge 
aforesaid, having first invoked the name of Christ, and setting and having God 
himself alone before our eyes, and by and with the advice of the reverend persons, 
William Guy, Timothy Mellichamp, Stephen Rowe, and William Orr, with whom 
in that part we have advised and maturely deliberated, do pronounce, decree, and 
declare the aforesaid George Whitefield. clerk to have been at the times articled, 
and now to be a priest of the Church of England, and at the time and days in that 
part articled, to have officiated as a minister in diverse meeting-houses in Charles- 
town in the province of South Carolina, by praying and preaching to public congre- 
gations ; and at such times to have omitted to use the form of prayer prescribed 
in the communion-book or book of common prayer, or at least according to the 
laws, canons, and constitutions ecclesiastical in that part made, provided and 
promulged, not to have used the same according to the la-^vful proofs before us in 
that part judicially had and made. We therefore pronounce, decree, and declare, 
that the said George Whitefield, for his excesses and faults, ought duly and canon- 
ically, and according to the exigence of the law in that part in the premises, to be 
corrected and punished, and also to be suspended from his office; and accordingly 
by tjiese presents, we do suspend him the said George Whitefield ; and for so sus- 
pended, we also pronounce, decree and declare him to be denounced, declared, 
and published openly and publicly in the face of the church." 

FROM 1670 TO 1808. 11 

his duty to punish. Both were good and useful men, but in 
different ways. The one was devoted to forms; the other 
soared above them. The piety of the one ran in the channel of 
a particular sect of Christians; but that of the other, confined 
neither to sect nor party, flowed in the broad and wide-spread- 
ing stream of Christianity. 

The dissenters increasing in numbers by emigrants, par- 
ticularly from Scotland and Ireland, complained that while 
they had to build their own churches and maintain their own 
ministers, they were taxed in common with the Episcopalians 
to support their highly-favored mode of worship. The dis- 
senters saw with regret several of their more wealthy followers 
desert a less fashionable church, and conform to that which 
enjoyed the patronage of government. They nevertheless 
maintained a respectable standing. The Presbyterians in 
particular, formed congregations not only in Charlestown, but 
on three of the maritime islands, and at Wiltown, Jackson- 
borough, Indian Land, Port Royal, and Wilhamsburgh. 
These were maintained by the contributions of their mem- 
bers. In process of time considerable funds were established 
by private donations for the permanent support of their mode 
of worship. While every Episcopal church was a corporation 
capable of holding property, of suing and being sued, the 
congregations of dissenters, not being known in law, could 
only hold property by the intervention of trustees : a mode of 
tenure often attended with loss, and always with trouble. 

To these inconveniences the dissenters were obliged to sub- 
mit, and probably must have continued to do so, if the revo- 
lution had not taken place. The change of government from 
proprietary to regal brought to them no relief. For Kings, 
even more than the proprietors, thought they had an interest 
in cementing the alliance between church and state, and con- 
necting the altar with the throne. 

When the people of Carolina, in common with their fellow- 
citizens, broke the chains which bound them to Great Britain, 
a new order of things took place. While the established 
church was chiefly confined to the vicinity of the sea-coast, 
in the course of the forty years which preceded the revolution, 
numerous bodies of dissenters had migrated from the more 
northern provinces and settled in the northern and western 
parts of Carolina. These, added to their brethren on the sea- 
coast, gave them a decided superiority in point of numbers. 
The physical force of the country, so necessary for its defence 
against Great Britain, rested in a great degree in their hands. 
The crisis demanded union and was favorable to the re-estab- 
lishment of the rights of man. Though the people of South 
Carolina engaged in the revolutionary war primarily for their 


civil liberties, they did not overlook their claims to equal re- 
ligious privileges without discrimination or preference. The 
judicious and moderate among the members of the established 
church saw and felt the propriety and necessity of relinquish- 
ing the advantages they had long enjoyed ; and with more 
readiness than is usual among those who part with power in 
possession, consented to a constitution which repealed all 
laws that gave them pre-eminence. The dissenters felt their 
weight, and though zealous in the cause of independence, 
could not brook the idea of risking their lives and fortunes for 
anything short of equal rights. Moderation, liberality, good 
sense and sound policy prevailed with both parties. The 
hopes of the enemies of independence that union could not be 
pTeserved among the discordant sects of religionists were dis- 
appointed. The energies of the inhabitants in maintaining 
their liberties were in no respect weakened. The prize con- 
tended for being made equally interesting to all, equal exer- 
tions were made by all for obtaining it. 

The experience of more than thirty years has proved that 
an established church is not essential to civil government; 
that citizenship is a bond of union sufficient for all its neces- 
sary purposes ; that the true mode of promoting the public 
interest and preserving peace among different sectaries, is for 
the constituted authorities to lean to neither ; but, standing 
erect, to give equal protection to the persons, liberties and pro- 
perty of all, without noticing their religious opinions and 
practices, while they do not disturb the equal rights of others 
or the peace and order of society ; and to leave to the different 
sectaries the exclusive management of their respective reli- 
gious interests. Proceeding on these principles, the inroads 
made on morals and religion by the revolutionary war in 
Carolina have been gradually done away. The acrimony of 
speech, the sourness of temper and the shyness of intercourse 
which had too much prevailed among religious sects before 
the revolution, have since that event given place to christian 
benevolence. The heat of party zeal has become more mod- 
erate. Men have discovered that their opinions with regard 
to speculative points are often as different as their faces, and 
that the harmony of society and the intercourse of life ought 
not to be interrupted by the one more than by the other. 
Without any interference on the part of the State, churches 
have been built, congregations formed, ministers settled and 
maintained, peace and good will preserved among the differ- 
ent sectaries. At the same time great liberality has been often 
spontaneously and reciprocally displayed in assisting each 
other in pecuniary concerns connected with the support of 
their respective forms of worship. 

FROM 1670 TO 1808. 13 

A revolution in the government of the church grew out of 
the civil revolution. A complete severance of all connection 
between church and State being accomplished by that great 
event, ecclesiastical proceedings, censures, punishments, infer 
no penalties nor any deprivation of civil rights. In this re- 
spect the churches of South Carolina have improved on their 
respective European prototypes. In England and Scotland 
the proceedings of spiritual courts are frequently vexatious 
and expensive. Excommunication from the church is nearly 
equal to an outlawry. A solitary instance of this occurred in 
South Carolina in 1765, in which the royal Governor William 
Bull, as ordinary of the province, pronounced a sentence of 
excommunication against an individual for refusing obedi- 
ence to his summons. The powers of these courts, where 
useful and necessary, have been transferred to civil establish- 
ments. There are now no spiritual courts in the State. No 
canons, decrees, acts, orders or regulations, either of bishops, 
presbyteries or religious associations of any kind, can involve 
a person, however contumacious, in civil disabilities or to 
any extent further than excluding him from the sacraments 
of the offended church, or from being considered as one of its 
members. Churches, as corporations, can enforce their by- 
laws, but their powers as spiritual courts are merely advisary ; 
for the civil authority neither issues nor aids any ecolesias- 
tical process. The constitution recognizes clergymen only for 
the purpose of declaring them ineligible to civil offices. The 
act for regulating the fees demandable for the performance of 
certain enumerated public duties, allows them to take from all 
voluntary applicants a small fee for registering births, mar- 
riages and funerals — for a search of these registers and a cer- 
tified extract from them. The same, law authorizes them to 
demand five shillings for reading in church every citation 
from a civil officer, called ordinary, preparatory to the grant- 
ing letters of administration on the estates of intestate persons. 
They are also by law excused from the performance of militia 
duty or serving on juries. Thus far and no further the con- 
stitution and laws of the State notice the clergy. For the 
solemnization of marriages, application is generally made to 
them ; but this is not legally necessaiy. Marriages with or 
without licenses or publication of the bans by clergymen or 
justices of the peace, are in law all equally valid ; but when 
contracted are indissoluble. The churches have no authority 
to gra,nt divorces. Every application to the civil power to 
legislate on this subject has been unsuccessful. The courts 
have no jurisdiction. No power exists in the State competent 
to grant them, nor can it be otherwise till the legislature pass 
a law for the purpose. 


A brief view of the present state of religion in Carolina 
will close this chapter. 

The Episcopalians since the revohition labored under pecu- 
liar disadvantages. Their church was incomplete without 
bishops, and their whole body of clergy and laity was incom- 
petent to invest any individual, or number of individuals, with 
Episcopal powers. This boon could only be obtained through 
some of the successors of the apostles in the old world. Twelve 
years subsequent to the revolution passed away before Episco- 
pal ordination could be obtained in South Carolina.* In the 
meantime the non-Episcopalians, animated with the recovery 
of their long lost equal rights, proceeded vigorously in organiz- 
ing churches and extending their forms of worship. 

"■■■' To preserve the uninterrupted succession of Episcopal ordinatioDj it was ne- 
cessary either that the Aiuerican candidates for the ministry should goto European 
bishops, or that ecclesiastical officers of that high rank should be constituted in 
the United States. The former was the mode usually adopted before the revolu- 
tion, and in a few instances after its commencement. Insuperable difficulties op- 
posed its continuance. The laws of England required all candidates for holy 
orders to take an oath of allegiance to his Britannic majesty. This could not be 
done by the citizens of independent America. The English bishops with great 
liberality applied for, and obtained an act of parliament, authorizing the ordination 
of clergymen for the United States without their taking an oath of allegiance to 
his Britannic majesty. This afforded only partial relief An American Episcopate 
was therefore proposed as the only remedy adequate to the exigency. The non- 
Episcopalians, before the revolution, had opposed this measure, but cheerfully ac- 
quiesce(j in it after that event had placed their rights and liberties beyond all 
foreigt^ interference. The proposed measure was readily and without difficulty 
substantially agreed upon by the Episcopalians on both sides of the Atlantic, yet 
many previous arrangements were necessary to give it effect. The English bish- 
ops required evidence of the orthodoxy, regularity, and order of the Episcopal 
churches in America, and also of the acquiescence of the civil government of the 
new formed States in the proposed Episcopate. Certificates of the latterj were 
easily obtained. Conventions of the American Episcopal clergy and laity were 
held in several successive years and in different States, which finally agreed upon 
such alterations of the prayers, forms, and officers of the church as local circum- 
stances and their new political condition required. In these the Episcopal church 
of South Carolina was represented by the Rev. Dr. Purcell, Jacob Read, and 
Charles Pinckney. The proposed alterations being submitted to the heads of the 
church in England, were so far approved as to be no obstacle in the way of their 
consecrating bishops to preside overthe American Episcopal church. Dr. Provost 
of New York, and Dr. White of Philadelphia, were accordingly in 1787 ordained 
and consecrated bishops of the American Episcopal church at the archiepiscopal 
palace of Lambeth by the archbishops of Canterbury and York, and by the bishop 
of Bath and Wells, and the bishop of Peterborough. Not long after, Dr. Madison 
of Virginia was ordained and consecrated in England to be a bishop in America. 
The Episcopal church was then for the first time complete in the United States. 
Three or rather four American clergymen were promoted to the rank of bishops 
by British Episcopal consecration. These jointly were competent to perpetuate 
their own order, and each of them separately had the power of ordaining priests 
and deacons. The uninterrupted succession was not only preserved, but its un- 
broken chain was extended across the Atlantic with full powers to perpetuate 
itself In consequence of these arrangements, the right Rev. Robert Smith, D. D. 
was by four bishops, convened in Philadelphia in September 1795, consecrated 
bishop of the Protestant Episcopal church in South Carolina. He continued in 
the discharge of the duties of that ofiice till his death in 1801. This was the sec- 
ond consecration of a bishop which had taken place in the United States. Since 
the death of bishop Smith there has been no bishop of his church in South Caro- 
lina. The candidates for holy orders are now under a necessity of repairing to 
the northern States for ordination. 

FROM 1670 TO 1808. 15 

1 he patronage which the EpiscopaHans enjoyed, under the 
royal government, made them less able to stand alone after 
that p&,Vronage was withdrawn. Man is a creature of habit. 
Voluntary contributions for the support of religion had been 
so long customary with the dissenters, that when the pressure 
of war was removed they readily resumed their ancient habits ; 
but the case was otherwise with the Episcopalians: for as their 
form of worship had for seventy years been in a great meas- 
ure supported from the public treasury, they were not so im- 
mediately impressed with the necessity of advancing their 
private funds for that purpose. 

For these and other reasons the Episcopal church lan- 
guished in South Carohna for several years after the revolu- 
tion. Though it maintained a respectable standing in their 
two ancient houses of worship in Charlestown,* it made for 
some time but little progress in the country. Better prospects 
are now before its members. Experience has convinced them 
of the propriety of voluntary contributions for the support of 
religion. Their church is completely organized within the 
United States. They are no longer confined in the choice of 
clergymen to strangers: for natives of the country, of the pur- 
est morals and best education, have with pious zeal entered 
upon or are preparing themselves for the work of the 
ministry in such numbers as exceed anything heretofore 
known in Carolina. Their long neglected places of worship 
in the country are repairing, and new ones are building. Di- 
vine service according to the book of common prayer is now 
regularly performed in Beaufort by the Rev. Mr. Hicks; in St 
Andrews by the Rev. Mr. Mills ; in St. Bartholomews by the 
Rev. Mr. Fowler; in St. Johns by the Rev. Mr. Gadsden; in 
St. Thomas by the Rev. Mr. Nankeville ; at the high hills of 
Santee by the Rev. Mr. Ischudy ; and at St James Santee by 
the Rev. Mr. Mathews. In most of the other parishes where 
the establishment operated before the revolution, there are 
Episcopal churches, but at present no settled ministers. 

The Presbyterians were among the first settlers, and were 
always numerous in Carolina. Their ministers in the mari- 
time districts were mostly from Scotland or Ireland; men of 

* Charlestown and Charlestown Neck constituted one parish by the name of 
St. Philips till 1721, when a new one named St. Michaels to the southward of 
Broad-street was established by act of assembly. Divine service was first per- 
formed in the present church of St. Philips in the year 1723; and in that of St. 
Michaels in 17fil. On the site of the latter, a church originally called St. Phdips 
had been previously erected about the year 1B90, which was the only Episcopal 
church in South Carolina prior to the establishment in 1706. Divine service was 
performed in St. Philips church for three-fourths of the 18th century by two rec- 
tors: thirty-four years by commissary Garden, and forty-two by bishop Smith. 
The Rev. Dr. Jenkins is the present rector, but being absent, divine service is per- 
formed by the Kev. Dr. Percy, and the Rev. James Dewar Simons. The Rev. 
Nathaniel Bowen is the rector of St. Michaels church. 



good education, orderly in their conduct, and devoted to the 
systems of doctrine and government established in Scotland. 
The zeal of their adherents had amassed considerable funds 
before the revolution, but these v.'-ere materially injured by the 
failure of trustees and the depreciation of the paper currency. 
They have a numerous and wealthy congregation in the capi- 
tal,* and the Presbytery of Charlestown consists of five mia- 
isters. To them seven congregationsf look up for religious 
instruction. It was constituted at an early period of the 18th 
century, agreeably to the principles and practice of the church 
of Scotland, but during the revolutionary war was unfortu- 
nately dissolved by the death or removal of the ministers con- 
stituting it; and all its books and records were lost or de- 

In the year 1790 four of the congregations belonging to the 
said Presbytery, being the only ones then provided with or- 
dained ministers, addressed a petition to the Legislature pray- 
ing to be constituted a body corporate, chiefly with the view of 
raising a fund for the relief of the widows and orphans of 
deceased clergymen belonging to their society. This was 
promptly granted. 

From the time of its incorporation the Presbytery of Charles- 
town has held regular stated meetings, and has exercised 
the power of ordination and the other functions of a Presby- 

Impressed with the importance of union in religious matters 
they applied, in 1799, to the General Assembly of the Presby- 
terian churches in the United States, to be received into com- 
munion with the said Assembly and to be admitted members 
of their body. Agreeably to the prayer of this memorial and 
petition, the Presbytery of Charlestown was received a con- 
stituent part of the General Assembly. Of the numerous 
emigrants to the western parts of Carolina, in the last fifty 
years of the 18th century, agreat majority were Presbyterians. 

* The present Presbyterian church in Charlestown was built about the year 
1731. Its ministers, as far as can be recollected, were the Rev. Messrs. Stuart, 
Grant, Lorimer, Morrison, Hewat, Graham, Wilson, and Buist. Previous to 1731 
the Presbyterians and Independents formed one society, and worshipped together 
in a church which stood on the lot which is now occupied by the circular church. 

f The Presbytery at present consists of the following congregations and miais- 
ters ; 1. Presbyterian church of Stoney Creek, Prince Williams, Rev. R. Mont- 
gomery Adams. 2. Presbyterian church of Salt Catchers. 3. Presbyterian church 
of Black Mingo, Rev. W. Kno.x. 4. Original and first incorporated Presbyterian 
church of Willamshurgh. 5. Presbyterian church of the city of Charlestown. 
6. Presbyterian church of Edisto Island, Rev. Donald M'Leod. 7. Presbyterian 
church of John and Wadmalaw Islands. Rev. Doctor Clarkson. 

These difl'erent congregations are incorporated and have glebes or funds of 
greater or less extent. 

The following congregations belonged formerly to the Presbytery, but have not 
connected themselves with it since its incorporation, viz. James Island, Wiltown, 
Pon Pon, and St. Thomas. 

FROM 1670 TO 180S. 17 

They had little regular preaching among them till about the 
year 1770, when missionaries from the northward formed them 
into churches. These were revived and increased after the 
revolution, and have since been constantly supplied with min- 
isters who have been formed into regular Presbyteries and 
synods in connection with the General Assembly of the Pres- 
byterian church of the United States. Most of their clergymen 
were born and educated in America. These are now formed 
into two Presbyteries consisting of more than twenty ministers, 
and ha,ve in connection with them about sixty congregations. 
There is also a Presbytery of seceders in South Carolina consist- 
ing of nine ministers, who have under their care twenty-two 
congregations. Each of these Presbyteries possesses and exer- 
cises the power of ordination. 

The Baptists formed a church in Charlestown about the 
year 1685.* Its first minister was the Rev. Mr. Screven, the 
founder of a numerous and respectable family. He began his 
ministerial labors in the province about the year 1683, and 
continued them till the time of his death in 1713. His suc- 
cessors in the Baptist church of Charlestown were the Rev. 
Messrs. Fry, White, Tilly, Simons, Chanler, Bedgewood, and 
Hart; who, with some intervals, supplied the church till 1780. 
In the year 1787, the Rev. Dr. Furman who is now living, was 
invested with the pastoral care of it. Anterior to the revolu- 
tion in 1776, they had increased to about thirty churches. 
Since the establishment of equal religious rights they have in- 
creased so that they now have five associations consisting of 
100 ministers, 130 churches, 10,500 communicants, and about 
73,500 adherents; reckoning seven of the latter for one of the 

The Independents or Congregationalists in conjunction with 
the Presbyterians were formed into a church in Charlestown 
about the year 1690. These sects, after forty years of union, 
differing only in the form of church government,f separated 
and formed different churches. The Independents kept pos- 
session of their ancient house of worship, long known by the 

*A subdivision of the Baptists, Icnown bj' the name of Arian or General Bap- 
tists, was formed into a church about the year ]735. This society became extinct 
about the year 1767. 

t Both agreed in doctrine, mode of worship, and in renouncing the power of 
bishops; but the latter were willing to submit to the authority of a Presbytery, 
while the former, exercising in their congregational capacity every necessary 
power for governing their own church without any extrinsic interference, claimed 
to be an independent self-governed society. By their constitution they are at lib- 
erty to elect their pastors from any denomination of christians. Two of their min- 
isters in the early part of the 18lh century were Presbyterians and members of 
the Charlestown Presbyterv. These were the Kev. Messrs. Stobo and Livingston. 
On the demise of the latter, liis successor was an Independent from New England. 
During his incumbency twelve families seceded and formed the Presbyterian 
church on the model of the church of Scotland. 


name of the White Meeting.* They erected an additional house 
of worship in Archdale street, in which divine service was first 
performed in 1787. These two houses form one church, and 
have common interests and ministers, with equal salaries and 

The Independents also have a church, near Dorchester, f 
supplied by the Rev. Mr. M'Kelhenny — in Christ church 
under the pastoral care of the Rev. Dr. M'Calla; on James 
Island under thatof Mr. Price; in Beaufort under Mr. Palmer, 
and in St Bartholomews at present vacant. 

The Methodists made their first appearance as a religious 
society in South Carolina in the year 1785. For the last ten 
or fifteen years they have increased beyond any former exam- 

*This building, after various eiilargemeiils, in the course of one hundred and 
fourteen years, was finally taken down in 1804; and the present church on a cir- 
cular plan of 88 feet diameter was erected in its place. This form accommodates 
a greater number of people, at less expense, than any other j is easy to the speaker, 
and makes his voice more distinctly audible, especially at a distance. The build- 
ing has already cost B0,000 dollars, and 14,000 more will be necessary to finish the 
steeple. One half of the gallery is laid otf for the use of people of color, and ac- 
commodates about 400 decent, orderly, and steady worshippers of that de- 

This church has had fifteen ministers. The commencement and termination of 
their ministerial functions as far as is now known, was nearly as follows : 

1. Rev. Benjamin Pierpoint settled about the year 1691, and died, it is supposed, 
in 16% or '97. 2. Rev. Mr. Adams a very short time minister. 3. Rev. John 
Cotton, settled in the year 1698, and died 1090. 4. Rev. Archibald Stobo took 
charge of the church in the autumn of 1700, and resigned in 1704. 5. Rev. Wm. 
Livingston became pastor in 1704, and died after the year 1720. 6. Rev. Nathan 
Bassett settled in 1724, died of the small pox in 1738. 7. Rev. James Parker ar- 
rived in Charlestown in 1740, and died in 1742. ci. Rev. Josiah Smith tookcharge 
of the church in 1742, and resigned in 1750. 9. Rev. James Edmonds settled De- 
cember 15, 1754, and resigned about 1767. 10. Rev. Wm. Hutson settled in con- 
nection with Mr. Edwards, 1757, and died in 1761. 11. Rev. Andrew Bennet was 
settled as pastor with Mr. Edmonds in 1762, and resigned in 1763. 12. Rev. Jno. 
Thomas was installed pastor of the church in 1767, and died at New York on the 
29th of September, 1771. 13. The Rev. William Tennent entered on the pastoral 
charge of the church in 1772, and died at the high hills at Santee in August, 1777 ; 
from his death the church remained vacant till the termination of the revolutionary 
war. While the British were in possession of Charlestown, the building was 
used as a store-house by the conquerors. The pews were all destroyed and the 
house materially injured. 14. Rev. Dr. Hollinshead enteredon the pastoral charge 
of the church in 1783, and is now living. 15. Rev. Dr. Keith, in connection with 
Dr. Hollinshead in 1787, and is now living. 

Of these fifteen ministers the first, second, third, sixth, eighth, thirteenth, four- 
teenth and fifteenth, were Americans, and one of them. Rev. Josiah Smith, a Caro- 
linian. The other seven were Europeans. Till the year 1730 the church was in- 
discriminately called Presbyterian Independent, or Congregational. After the 
separation whicli then took place between them and the Presbyterians it retained 
the appropriate name of Independent or Congregational Church, and was in 
common conversation sometimes called the New England Meeting, but oftener the 
While Meeting. 

f This church was formed as early as the year 1696. It is the oldest without 
the limits of Charlestown. Its founders migrated in a body, with their minister 
the Rev. Joseph Lord, from Dorchester, in Massachusetts, and settled compactly 
together in a place to which they gave the name of their former abode. In 1752 
they made a second migration to Medway, in Georgia, with their minister, the 
Rev. Joseph Osgood, who was so much beloved by his people, and had such 
influence over them, that on his recommendation they went off in a body. Their 
original church in Carolina lay in a ruined condition till 1794, when it was rebuilt 
and re-organized. 

FROM 1670 TO ISOS. 19 

pie. They had been indefatigable in their labors, preaching 
abundantly* in the most remote settlements and where there 
had been no previous means of religious instructions. Their 
mode of performing divine service is calculated to keep up a 
high degree of fervor in the minds of their followers. Well 
knowing that all men have hearts to feel, though few have 
heads to reason, their address is for the most part to the pas- 
sions and excites more of feeling than of reasoning. Their 
preachers, laboring under strong impressions, are very suc- 
cessful in communicating them to the breasts of their hearers. 
By a circulating mode of preaching they guard against that 
apathy and languor which is apt to result from long habits. 
New preachers successively addressing new congregations are 
roused to new and extraordinary exertions. Sympathetic 
feelings spread from one to the other; and frequently whole 
congregations are melted into tears, or transported with ecstacy 
breaking out in loud exclamations.f 

* Traveling Methodist preachers grenerally preach on six days of each week to 
six different congregations. No "weather, however severe, prevents their punc- 
tual attendance agreeably to appointment. For this extraordinary labor they re- 
ceive from the common fund only eighty dollars a year in addition to their traveling 
expenses. The interior economy of their connection is admirable, and shows the 
energetic mind of John Wesley. It is well calculated to secure the performance 
of much clerical duty at a very little expense, and is therefore peculiarly suited to 
the poor. Their society in South Carolina is divided into twelve circuits and sta- 
tions ; in which there are twenty-six traveling preachers who continue to ride 
daily, Monday excepted, two or three in each circuit, so that they preach one 
hundred and fifty-six sermons weekly, or eight thousand one hundred and twelve 
- sermons in the year, besides attending night and other casual meetings. They 
commonly ride around a circuit in five or six weeks. Exclusive of the twenty-six 
traveling preachers there are in the State of South Carolina, about ninety-three 
local preachers, generally married men, who labor all the week and preach at an 
average each two sermons in each week, or nine thousand six hundred and sev- 
enty-two in one year. Thus there are annually preached by the Methodists 
seventeen thousand seven hundred and eighty-four sermons for $2,080; as the 
local preachers receive no salary or compensation for their labors. They have in 
South Carolina about two hundred churches or stations for preaching, which are 
constructed in so plain a style as to cost on an average about one hundred and 
thirty-five dollars each, or 27,000 for the whole. There are four Methodist 
churches in Charlestown ; two of which are not in connection with the others. 
One of these (Trinity Church) is under the pastoral care of the Reverend Mr. 
Munds of the Protestant Episcopal Church; the other is vacant. The two which 
are in connection have their ministers changed according to the established rou- 
tine. To these two belong forty heads of families, or about one hundred and 
seventy white persons, and fifteen hundred and twenty persons of color. The 
Methodists have abundantly more success in the woods, the swamps, the pine 
barrens, and all new and dispersed settlements than in populous cities where 
there are competent resident clergymen. 

fCamp meetings which began in Kentucky, and parts adjacent, found their way 
into South Carolina about the year ISOO. These were held in different places and 
different seasons, but oftenest in the autumn. They were attended by several 
thousands, many of whom came from considerable distances; and they usually 
kept together on the same ground from the Thursday of one week till the Tuesday 
of the next. The holy sacrament was always administered on the intervening 
Sunday, and to persons of different sects ; who, forgetting all differences on minor 
subjects, chose to commune together. The bagging provided for the envelop- 
ment of their cotton was easily formed into tents for their temporary lodging. 
-Huts made in a few hours and covered wagons answered the same purpose. The 


To presume that nolhing improper has ever occurred in 
their frequent, numerous and unseasonable meetings, would 
be contrary to the ordinary course of things; but that great 
good has resulted from the labors of the Methodists is evident 
to all who are acquainted with the state of the country before 
and since they commenced their evangelisms in Carolina. 
Drunkards have become sober and orderly — bruisers, bullies, 
and blackguards, meek, inoffensive and peaceable — profane 

farmers brought their famiUes, provisions, and bedding, in wagons from their 
respective homes. They took their station where wood and water were of easy 
attainment, and in general fared well. From their stores they hospitably enter- 
tained strangers who came as visitors. Two, three, or four tents or stands for 
preaching were erected at such distances that divine service could be performed 
in each of them at the same time without any interference. From five to twelve 
or fifteen ministers of different denominations attended and with short intervals 
for refreshment and repose, kept uj) in different places a constant succession of 
religious exercises by night as well as by day. Besides the performance of divine 
service by the ministers in their respective tents, there were frequently sub- 
divisions of the people at convenient distances, where praying, exhorting, and 
singing of psalms, was carried on by lay persons, and the whole so managed that 
they did not disturb each other. The auditors whose motive was curiosity, freely 
passed from one scene to another, and could in the space of a few minutes and 
the circuit of a few acres indulge their taste for variety. Others were more sta- 
tionary and hung on the lips of their favorite preachers. Among these it was not 
at all uncommon for individuals, in consequence of something said in the sermon 
or prayers, to be seized all at once with the most dreadtul apprehensions concern- 
ing the state of their souls, insomuch that many of them could not abstain from 
crying out in the most public manner, bewailing their lost and undone condition 
by nature, calling themselves " enemies to God and despisers of precious Christ;'' 
declaring, "that they were unworthy to live on the face of the earth:" but the 
universal cry was "what shall we do to be saved?" The agony under which they 
labored was expressed not only by words, but ahso by violent agitations of the 
body, by clapping their hands, and beating their breasts — by shaking and trem- 
bling — byfaintings and convulsions — and they remained sobbing, weeping, and often 
crying aloud till the service was over. Some who were subjects of these exer- 
cises did not consider themselves as converted persons, but most were supposed 
by themselves and others to have been converted in a few days, and sometimes in 
a few hours. In the latter case, they were raised up all at once from the lowest 
depth of sorrow and distress, to the highest pitch of joy and happiness; crying 
out with triumph and exultation "that they had overcome the wicked one, that 
they had gotten hold of Christ, and would never let him go." Under these de- 
lightful impressions some began to pray and exhort publicly, and others desired 
the congregation to join with them in singing a particular psalm. Many of the 
subjects of the preceding exercises while under their operation had no appetite 
for tbod nor inclination to sleep. 

To what cause this memorable work ought to be ascribed, was a question 
which occasioned much debate and great diversity of opinion. Some ascribed it 
to the real efficacy of the doctrines of Christ and to the power of God which ac- 
companied them : others to the influence of the devil, and many to the influence of 
fear and hope, of sympathy and example aided by peculiar circumstances. Many 
serious persons advocated the first opinion. These alleged that the fruits of this 
extraordinary work in the hearts and lives of men were such as might be ex- 
pected from divine agency. The lives of the profane were reformed, harmony and 
peace succeeded strife and contention, families where religion had been disre- 
garded, became temples in which God was daily worshipped. Persons who had 
been loose livers, formed themselves into societies which met frequently for prayer 
and religious conversation. With regard to the external effects by which this 
work manifested itself on the bodies of men, they acknowledged them to be un- 
common but not singular. The scriptures furnish instances of similar effects of 
an a-wakened conscience, such as St. Paul at his conversion — the jailor at 
Philippi,and Felix who trembled as St. Paul reasoned of righteousness, temperance, 
and the judgment to come. 

They who ascribed the work to the agency of the devil, were comparatively 

FROM 1670 TO 180S. 21 

swearers, decent in their conversation. In the cause of re- 
Ugion the Methodists are excellent pioneers and prepare the 
way for permanent moral improvement when the "fervor of 
passion subsides into calm reflection and sober reason. They 
are particularly suited to the state of society in South Caro- 
lina, in which large tracts of poor land afford such a scanty 
return to its dispersed cultivators as to be incompetent to 
their own support, and also that of learned stationary clergy- 
men. To multitudes of such persons the methodists have 
given religious instructions which they never enjoyed before, 
arid among such they have produced a great diminution of 

few and consisted for the ihost part of profane scoffers at all that was serious, or 
of bigotted formal christians who denounced everything that did not accord witli 
the religious routine to which they had been accustomed. 

That the camp meetings were intended for good, and that they frequently issued 
in the reformation of several who attended them, was the general opinion of the 
candid, liheral and virtuous ; but these at the same time acknowledged that much 
of the work, especially its effects on the body, were to be ascribed to the imper- 
fections of agitated liuman nature — to the influence of strong passions — to the 
force of sympathy and example aided by peculiar circumstances. These alleged 
that the bodily agitations might be sufficiently explained by the operation of 
natural causes. The soul and body, they observed, are so intimately connected 
that they mutually symi)athize with each other, and whatever gives pleasure or 
pain to the one. gives likewise pleasure or pain to the other. All the passions of 
the mind, especially those which are of a violent nature, discover themselves by 
some corresponding outward expression. When an event, whether joyful or sor- 
rowful, is communicated in such an interesting manner as to affect our minds 
strongly, it will also affect our bodies in proportion. As this is the case with re- 
gard to such of men's concerns as are present and temporal, it is reasonable that 
it should also be the case with regard to such of them as are future and eternal. 
When they were deeply affected by the preaching of the gospel, their fears 
alarmed by the dread of everlasting punishment, and their hopes elevated by the 
assurance of pardon and the prospect of eternal happiness, it was natural that the 
feelings of their minds should discover themselves both by words and actions. 
The sermons preached on these occasions were addressed not so much to the 
understanding of the hearers as to their imaginations and especially to the pas- 
sions of fear and hope. 

The effects of these camp meetings were of a mixed nature. They were doubt- 
less attended for improper purposes by a few licentious persons, and by others 
with a view of obtaining a handle to ridicule all religion. It is to be regretted 
that from the imperfection of human nature, truth with a little distortion and high 
coloring could be made in some respect to answer their purposes especially with 
those whose principles were unsettled. The free intercourse of so great a num- 
ber of all ages and sexes under cover of the night and the woods was not without 
its temptations. It is also to be feared that they gave rise to false notions of re- 
ligion by laying too much stress on bodily exercises and substituting them in 
place of moral virtues or inward purity. These were too often considered as evi- 
dences of a change of the heart and affections, though they neither proved nor 
disapproved anything of the kind. After every deduction is made on these several 
accounts, it must be acknowledged that the good resulting from these camp meet- 
ings greatly preponderated over the evil. They roused that indifi'erence to the 
future destinies of man, which is too common, and gave rise to much serious 
thoughtfulness on subjects confessedly of the most interesting nature. The cir- 
cumstances under which these impressions were excited were too violent to last 
long. Much of the extraordinary fervor which produced camp meetings has 
abated and they are seldomer held, and when held they are attended by smaller 
numbers than formerly. They are still kept up by the Methodists, but are de- 
serted by most other denominations. More correct and rational ideas of religion 
are daily taking place. These influence the understanding more, and the body 
less than was common about the beginning of the 19th century in Carolina and 
the southern States, and about the year 1740 in New England, New York, New 
^ersey, Pennsylvania and at Cambuslang and other places in Scotland. 


gross immoralities. Similar zeal and activity have been dis- 
played by the Baptists, and their labors have been followed 
with correspondent success in civilizing and evangelizing re- 
mote and destitute settlements. 

Among the numerous emigrants to Carolina there were 
doubtless at all times several of the Roman Catholic persua- 
sion, but they Avere not organized into a church till 1791. In 
that year a number of individuals of that communion, chiefly 
natives of Ireland, associated together for public worship- 
chose a vestry, and put themselves under the care of bishop 
Carrol, of Baltimore. The Reverend Doctor Keating officiated 
as their minister. The troubles in France and the West In- 
dies soon brought a large accession to their number. Under 
the auspices of the learned and eloquent Doctor Gallaherthey 
have built, organized and obtained incorporation for a re- 
spectable church in Charlestown. The orderly conduct and 
active co-operation of its members in all measures for the de- 
fence and good government of the country, proves that the 
apologies offered in justification of the restrictions imposed on 
them by the protestant governments of Europe are without 
foundation, or do not apply to the state of things in Carolina. 
The Quakers have a small church in Charlestown, and a con- 
siderable one near Bush river ; but steady in their opposition 
to slavery, they are not numerous in a country where the 
greatest part of its most fertile soil cannot be advantageously 
cultivated otherwise than by negroes. In consequence of the 
late unrestrained importation of slaves, many of the Quakers 
have left Carolina in disgust, and settled in the State of Ohio, 
where slavery is prohibited. The encouragements given to 
settlers in Carolina have attracted people not only of different 
rehgions, but of different languages. Two of the latter, the 
French and the Dutch, have been continued in their respect- 
ive religious societies. 

Soon after the revocation of the edict of Nantz in 1685, 
great numbers of French protestants sought an asylum in 
Carolina. Most of them settled in the parishes of St. Dennis 
and St. James, on Santee, and to them in their ecclesiastical 
capacity were extended the privileges of established churches, 
with a permission to perform all their public religious exer- 
cises in the French language, provided they used Doctor 
Durel's translation of the book of common prayer. Those of 
them who settled in Charlestown formed a church about the 
beginning of the eighteenth century on the plan of the re- 
formed churches in France.* It is rich in lands ; but so 

®The Lords proprietors in 1701, with9ut consideration, conveyed to trustees for 
the use of the French Protestants in Charlestown, two lots in King street origin- 
ally numbered 92 and 93. These were subdivided and leased in the year 1755 
for fifty years, and are now valuable. In 1740 their church was burnt down au" 

FROM 1670 TO 1808. 23 

many of the descendants of its original founders have joined 
other churches, that its present members are but few. 

The German protestants associated in Charlestown for re- 
ligious worship about the middle of the eighteenth century. 
They were at first accommodated with the use of the French 
church for several years. In the year 1759 they began to 
build a house of worship for themselves. This was conse- 
crated in 1764 by the name of St. John's church, but was in- 
corporated in 1783 by the name of the Lutheran church of 
German protestants. All its records prior to 1763 have been 
lost. Their first minister, the Reverend Mr. Luft, arrived in 
1752. His successors were the Reverend Messrs. John George 
Frederic, John Nicholas Martin, John Severin Haumbaum, 
Frederic Baser, Christian Streit, John Christopher Faber, 
Matthew Frederic, Charles Faber; the last of whom is now in 
office. Of these the only native American was Christian 
Streit who officiated from 1778 to 1781, and first introduced 
divine service in the English language so as to have one ser- 
vice in English every second or third Sunday. 

Besides their church in Charlestown, the German protes- 
tants have a church in Amelia township, two on Saluda river, 
two on Broad river, one at Beaver creek, and one at Salt 
Catchers; but with them as with the French, each succeed- 
ing generation is less anxious for perpetuating the language 
of their forefathers, and frequently join themselves to societies 
in which divine service is constantly performed in English. 

The Jews, the oldest religion in the world, enjoy rights in 
Carolina which have been denied to them for many centuries 
in the greatest part of Europe. Equally interested in the 
welfare of the country, they are equally zealous for its defence 
and good government. They have had a synagogue in Charles- 
town for more than half a century. Their whole number in 
South Carolina is about seven hundred. 

By the constitution of South Carolina not only all the sects 
which have been mentioned, but those individuals who keep 
aloof from all religious societies enjoy equal protection for life, 
liberty and property. The government is administered on the 
idea that the constituted authorities have nothing to do with 
rehgion ; this being an affair between man and his Creator — 
that the proper business of magistrates is to provide for the 

all their records consumed. It was again destroyed in the great fire of 1796, but 
was afterwards rebuilt in 1799. In consequence of these misfortunes little of 
their early history is known. As far as can be recollected their ministers were as 
follows; Rev. Mr. Boisseau in 1712; ReT. Francis Guiehard from 1722 to 1753; 
the Rev. John Peter Tetard from 1753 to 1759; the Rev. Bartholomew Henry 
Himeli from 1759 to 1773. After an absence of twelve years he was re-elected 
minister in 17S5. Since that period, the Rev. Messrs. Peter Levrier, LaCoste, 
Boardillon and Detargny have in succession served as ministers of the church: 
but it is now vacant. 


civil order and happiness of the whole community, while in- 
dividuals and sects have unrestrained liberty to adjust the 
articles of their belief and their religious concerns in any 
mode most agreeable to themselves. 

The emoluments of the clergy in Carolina may terminate 
with their services, but always do so with their lives. Even 
while they live their income is far short of what the same 
talents, education, and industry generally command in the 
other learned professions. To compensate for these sacrifices, 
to provide for the clergy when elderly or disabled, and for 
their widows and orphans, several societies have been insti- 
tuted and fostered by the liberality of the people. The eldest 
is for the relief of the widows and orphans of the clergy of 
the Protestant Episcopal Church in South Carolina. This 
was instituted in 1762, and incorporated in 17S6. It began 
with eleven members, all clergymen. Lay members were 
first admitted in 1770. There are now eight clerical members, 
and sixty-five of the laity, all of whom pay ten dollars per 
annum. The society possesses efficient funds to the amount 
of $26,000, and an annual income of $2,800, which exceeds 
its present annual expenses. This surplus is laid out in stock, 
so that the funds and income of the society increase consider- 
ably every year. 

The next in order is entitled "the Society for the benefit of 
elderly or disabled Ministers, and of the Widows and Or- 
phans of the 'Clergy of the Independent or Congregational 
Church in the State of South Carolina." This was estab- 
lished in 1789, and soon after incorporated. It consists of 
forty-seven members, each of whom pays annually one pound 
sterling. Of these only three are clergymen. Its capital ex- 
ceeds $29,000, and its annual income is about $2,000 more 
than its present annual expenditures. The surplus from time 
to time is added to the capital, and will soon constitute a re- 
spectable sum. 

The Presbytery of Charlestown is a corporation for raising a 
fund for the relief of the widows and orphans of their society. 
This was constituted in 1790, and possesses a capital of 
$2,645. These and similar institutions indirectly foster reli- 
gion and learning, for they take away from the discourage- 
ments of a worldly nature, which deter men of forecast from 
engaging in theological studies or entering on clerical func- 

The methodists manage these matters on a general system, 
and in a way peculiar to themselves. Their worn-out super- 
annuated and supernumerary ministers, the wives and widows 
of all ministers, draw a salary from a common fund equal to 
that of a traveling preacher. The children of all their preach- 

FROM 1670 TO 1808. 25 

ers are each allowed sixteen dollars a year till they are seven 
years of age, and twenty-four dollars after that period till they 
are fourteen years old. In this manner their preachers are 
absolved from distressing anxiety about the future support of 
their families; for nearly the same provision is made for them 
after the death of their parents as before. 

In addition to these modes, voluntarily adopted by different 
religious societies in Carolina for the support of the families 
of deceased clergymen, several of the old churches have funds 
in lands, negroes, or monies, at interest, which assist in the 
support of officiating ministers. These institutions are of 
early origin, and of great utility. By discouraging unnecessary 
separations they cement the union and preserve the perpetuity 
of congregations, while they lighten the burdens of supporting 
preachers. It is to be wished that they were multiplied and 
carried to an extent sufficient to pay all church expenses. 
This has been done in Edisto Island, and might be done, 
with proper exertions, in every district. The present heavy 
rents on pews might then be done away, and churches made 
as accessible to the poor as the rich. This policy originated 
upwards of one hundred years ago, and was found very use- 
ful. The revolutionary paper money materially injured the 
system, but it may now be resumed with increasing advan- 
tage; for the future existence of paper money is constitution- 
ally prohibited, and the privileges of incorporation, then unat- 
tainable by dissenters, are at present either possessed, or may 
on application be easily obtained, by every religious society. 

Though the different sects in Charlestown have been long 
separated from each other by distinct religious property, and 
different modes of worship, yet in one instance there is a com- 
munion of all Christians highly honorable to human nature. 
It often happened that persons, whose daily wants were sup- 
plied by their daily labor, departed this life, leaving helpless 
orphans without any prospect of education, and often without 
the means of support. Instances of this became so numerous 
as to require a systematic arrangement for their accommoda- 
tion. The business was taken up with ardor. By donations 
of individuals, and appropriations from the city treasury, a 
spacious building, called the Orphan House, was erected at the 
close of the eighteenth century, in which about one hundred 
and thirty orphans are successively fed and clothed. They 
also receive the rudiments of a plain education. One thing 
was wanting: no means had been provided for their religious 
instruction. The bounty of individuals and of the public 
soon added a church for the performance of divine service for 
their benefit, and of such of the inhabitants as chose to attend 
with them. The clergy of all denominations of Christians, 


with the consent of their respective congregations, concurred 
in performing divine service, in a routine fixed by the mana- 
gers of the institution. Thus a free church was instituted, in 
which the gospel was preached without expense, not only 
to the orphans but to all who chose to attend. It is re- 
markable that in the various services which have been per- 
formed by the clergy of different sects of Christians, nothing 
has been at any time introduced savoring of the peculiarities 
of sect or party. The truths of the gospel in which all Chris- 
tians are agreed, and the principles of morality sanctioned by 
universal consent, have been the only topics brought forward. 
The astonished hearers, consisting of Jews and Gentiles, Catho- 
hcs and Protestants, Christians and Infidels, found that all 
religions tended to make men better, and that good men of 
all denominations substantially meant the same thing. They 
wondered at the contentions of Christians, for they perceived 
that they all agreed on matters of the greatest moment, and 
only differed on subjects of minor importance. From charity 
in giving, an unexpected transition was made to charity in 
thinking. When they intended nothing more than to relieve 
the necessities of the fatherless, they found their minds gradu- 
ally cleared from that narrowness of thinking, which leads 
bigots of all descriptions to suppose themselves exclusively 
right, and all others wrong. Their minds expanded with 
good will and charity to their fellow-citizens, though differing 
from them in modes and forms. 

These are some of the good consequences which have re- 
sulted in Charlestown from the establishment of a charitable 
institution on a broad basis ; and still more extensively over 
the whole State, from placing all religious denominations on 
an equal footing, without discrimination or preference. 

Though real religion is always the same, yet there is a fash- 
ion in its modes varying with times and circumstances, which 
is worthy of historical notice. For the first thirty-five or forty 
years after the settlement of South Carolina, there was a con- 
stant jarring between the puritans and cavaliers, or the dis- 
senters and high churchmen. The former brought with them 
from England much of the severity and strictness of their 
party, the latter an equal proportion of that levity and spright- 
liness which was fashionable in England after the restoration 
of Charles the Second to the throne of his ancestors. The 
former dreaded conformity to the fashionable world, even in 
matters of indifference, as a great abomination ; the latter had 
an equal horror of hypocrisy, and to avoid the appearance of 
it went to the opposite extreme. 

In the next seventy years in which the Church of England 
was established, both parties relaxed. The sufferings of dis- 

FROM 1670 TO 1808. 27 

senters under the rigorous establishments of Europe were 
unknown in Carolina. The moderation of the established 
church was great — the toleration of the dissenters was com- 
plete. Except the patronage from government, and support 
from the public treasury, the civil rights and privileges of both 
were nearly equal. The former were too apt to look down 
with contempt on the latter, as an inferior grade of beings, 
but abstained from all private acts of injury or oppression. 
The one gradually abated of their haughtiness, the other of 
their scrupulosity. Fashion induced several prosperous indi- 
viduals among the dissenters to join the established church. 
The American revolution leveled all legal distinctions, dimin- 
ished prejudices, and brought both into a nearer connection 
with each other. Marriages between persons of different de- 
nominations became more common and excited less wonder. 
Fashion no longer led exclusively to one church. The name 
of meeting-house and the ridicule attached to those who fre- 
quented them were done away. The difference now is more 
in name than reality. The peculiarities, formerly character- 
istic of each, have been so far dropped that there is no longer 
any other obvious mark of distinction than that which results 
from their different modes of performing divine service. 

Among the Carolinians deism was never common. Its 
inhabitants at all times generally believed that a Christian 
church was the best temple of reason. Persons professing 
arian or socinian doctrines, or that system of religion which 
has been denominated universalism, are so very few that they 
form no separate religious societies. The only church in 
which these doctrines were publicly professed has long been 
completely extinct. The bulk of the people who make an 
open profession of any religion are either Baptists, Catholics, 
Episcopalians, Independents, Methodists, Protestants of the 
German or French reformed churches, Presbyterians, or Sece- 
ders. All these agree in the following doctrines, which have 
a direct tendency to advance the best interests of society and 
the peace and happiness of its members. 

There is a God and a future state of rewards and punish- 

God is to be publicly worshipped. 

The holy scriptures of the Old and New Testament are the 
word of God. 

The present state of man is a state of sin and misery. 
Jesus Christ is the Son of God, and the Saviour of the world. 
There will be a resurrection of the dead, and a general judg- 
ment, in which retribution will be made to every individual 
of the human race according to his works. 

But these sects differ in matters respecting church politics, 


some preferring the government of one, others that of a few 
or of the many; by bishops, presbyteries, associations, the 
whole body of the people, or by vestries, elders, or select por- 
tions of them. While all agree that ministers or public teach- 
ers of religion are of divine appointment, some contend for a 
distinction of ranks, and others for a parity among them. The 
former are subdivided; some considering an uninterrupted suc- 
cession from the apostles to be necessary — others that ordina- 
tion derived from John Wesley, or his successors, is as valid 
as that from St. Paul or any of the Apostles. In addition to 
these acknowledged legitimate sources of ordination, the other 
sects contend that three or more ordained ministers are fully 
competent to the work of ordination, and that all ordained 
ministers are of equal grade in the church. 

All agree that public prayers to the Deity are of divine in- 
stitution; but some prefer prayers by form, others in an extem- 
pore manner. 

All agree that baptism is a divine ordinance, and that it 
may be rightly administered when adults are its subjects and 
immersion the mode. Others add that it may also be rightly 
administered when the children of believers are its subjects 
and sprinkling the mode. Among professors who agree in so 
many fundamental points embracing the substance of Chris- 
tianity, and differ only in matters relating to its husk and shell 
or necessary appendages, there is an ample foundation for a 
friendly understanding and a liberal exchange of all the kind 
offices of reciprocal church fellowship; while tJiere is no real 
cause for treating each other with shyness or cold indifference. 


FROM 1670 TO 1S0&. 

South Carolina lies between the 32d and 35th degrees of 
north latitude, and in the same parallel with Cyprus, Candia, 
Morocco, Barbary, Damascus, Tripoli, Palmyra, Babylon, and 
other parts of Turkey in Asia, and with parts of Persia, India, 
and China. In comparing American climates with those of 
Europe, to bring them on a par with each other, a difference 
of 12 degrees should be allowed for peculiarities in the Amer- 
ican continent. The most remarkable of these is such a pre- 
dominance of cold as subjects an American, living in north lat- 
itude 35 to an equal degree of cold with an European residing 

FROM 1670 TO 1808. 29 

in north latitude 47.* If this opinion is correct we should look 
for a resemblance of South Carolina, not in the countries which 
have been mentioned as lying in the same latitude, but in Aix, 
Rochelle, Montpelier, Lyons, Bordeaux, and other parts of 
France; in Milan, Turin, Padua, Genoa, Parma, Mantua, and 
other parts of Italy; in Buda, Benda, Crimea, and other parts 
of Turkey in Europe; in Circassia, Astracan, and other parts 
of Russian Tartary, and of Chinese Tartary, which lie between 
the 44th and 47th degrees of north latitude. It is certain that 
the points of resemblance are more numerous in the latter than 
the former case. 

The climate of South Carolina is in a medium between that 
of tropical countries and of cold temperate latitudes. It re- 
sembles the former in the degree and duration of its summer 
heat, and the latter in its variableness. In tropical countries 
the warmest and coldest days do not in the course of a twelve- 
month vary more, from each other, than sixteen degrees of 
Farenheit's thermometer. There is consequently but little dis- 
tinction between their summer and winter; but a variation of 
83 degrees between the heat and cold of different days of the 
same year, and of 46 degrees in the different hours of the same 
day in South Carolina is to be found in its historical records. 
Since 1791, the difference between our coolest and warmest 
summers has ranged between 88 and 93, and the difference 
between our mildest and coldest winters has ranged on a 
few particular days from 50 to 17.t Our greatest heat is some- 
times less and never much more than what takes place in the 
same season in Baltimore, Philadelphia, and New York; but 
the warm weather in these places does not on an average 
continue above six weeks, while in Carolina it lasts from three 
to four months. Our nights are also warmer than theirs. The 
heat of the days in Charlestown is moderated by two causes, 
which do not exist in an equal degree to the northward of it. 
Our situation open and near the sea, almost surrounded by 
water and not far distant from the torrid zone, gives us a small 
proportion of the trade winds which, blowing from the south- 
east, are pleasantly cool. These generally set in about 10 A. 
M., and continue for the remainder of the day. A second 

* If the meteorological observations which have been made at Williamsburg, 
Cambridge; Quebec, and Hudson's bay, in America, be compared with those which 
have been made at Algiers, Rome, Poictiers, and Solyskamsid, places whose lati- 
tudes are nearly equal, it will be found that the European continent is now twelve 
degrees warmer than that of America. — Williams' Vermont, p. 3&4. 

t Farenheit's thermometer is what is every where meant in this publication ; 
andthe observations on it therein referred to, unless otherwise specified, were 
reported to the medical society as taken by Dr. Robert Wilson at his house, the 
west end of Broad-street, at the hours of 8 in the morning, between 2 and 3 in the 
afternoon, and at 10 in the evening. The instrument was suspended in an open 
passage about ten feet from the floor. 


reason may be assigned from the almost daily showers of rain 
which fall in the hottest of our summer months, and are fre- 
quently accompanied with much thunder and lightning, and 
therefore are called thunder showers. 

The degree of heat in Charlestown is considerably less than 
in the interior western country. In the summer of 1808, at 
Columbia, it was frequently at 96 and 97, and sometimes at 98 ; 
while at Charlestown it did not exceed 91. 

The number of extreme warm days in Charlestown is sel- 
dom above thirty in a year ; and it is rare for three of these to 
follow each other. On the other hand, eight months out of 
twelve are moderate and pleasant. The number of piercing 
cold days in winter is more in proportion to our latitude than 
of those which are distressingly hot in summer: but of these 
more than three rarely come together. There are on an average 
in Charlestown about twenty nights, in a twelvemonth, in 
which the closeness and sultriness of the air forbid in a great 
measure the refreshment of sound sleep ; but this severe weather 
is for the most part soon terminated by refreshing and coohng 
showers. April, May, and June, are in common our health- 
iest months, with the exception of the cholera infantum and 
bowel diseases among children. August and September are 
the most sickly; April and May the driesi; June, July, and 
August the wettest; November the pleasan test. Our old peo- 
ple are oftenest carried off in cold weather; the young, the 
intemperate, and the laboring part of the community, when it 
is hot. In some years January, and in others February is the 
coldest month. It is remarkable that when orange trees have 
been destroyed by frost, it has always been in the month of 
February. It is also remarkable that oranges, though plenti- 
ful forty or fifty years ago, are now raised with difficulty. 
Once in every eight or ten years a severe winter destroys the 
trees on which they grow. Of this kind were the winters of 
1776, 1779, 1786, and 1796. The transitions from heat to 
cold have in the same period been great and rapid. Mr. John 
Champneys has observed on three ditferent occasions the ther- 
mometer fall more than fifty degrees in less than fifteen hours. 
The coldest days on record are December 23d and 24th, 1796, 
In both of which the thermometer in doctor Wilson's house 
fell to seventeen. These changes, probably the eft'ect of the 
country being more opened and cleared, discourage the hope 
of naturalizing tropical fruits. November and December are 
the best months in the year for strangers to arrive in Carolina. 
Such should calculate so as not to make their first appearance 
either in summer or in the face of it, or in the first months of 
autumn. The hottest day of the year is sometimes as early 
as June, sometimes as late as September, but oftenest in July 

FROM 1670 TO 1808. 31 

or August. The hottest hour of the day in Charlestown varies 
with the weather ; it is sometimes as early as ten in the fore- 
noon, but most commonly between two and three in the 

In the spring when the sun begins to be powerful, a langour 
and drowsiness is generally felt; respiration is accelerated, 
and the pulse becomes quicker and softer. Strangers are apt 
to be alarmed at these feelings and anticipate an increase of 
them y/ith the increasing heat of the season, but they find 
themselves agreeably disappointed. The human frame so 
readily accommodates itself to its situation that the heat of 
June and July is to most people less distressing* than the 
comparatively milder weather of April and May. On the 
the other hand, though September is cooler than the preceding 
months, it is more sickly and the heat of it more oppressive. 
Perspiration is diminished and frequently interrupted : hence 
the system, debilitated by the severe weather of July and 
August, feels more sensibly and more frequently a sense of 
lassitude. Besides the coolness of the evenings in September 
and the heavy dews that then fall, multiply the chances, of 
getting cold. It is on the whole the most disagreeable month 
in the year. 

In winter the mountains near the western boundary of the 
State are often covered with snow. From thence to the sea 
shore snow but seldom falls so as to cover the ground except 
on extraordinary occasions.f The soil is sometimes in like 
manner bound up with frost. This seldom extends into the 
ground more than two inches. In shady places it will not 
thaw for several days ; and the waters and ponds at the same 
time are generally frozen, but seldom more than half an inch 
thick, and rarely strong enough to give an opportunity for the 
wholesome exercise of skating. This freezing lasts only for a 
few days, and the weather breaks up mild and warm so as to 
render fires unnecessary in the middle of the day. In the 
winter these changes from heat to cold, and the reverse, fre- 

* On the 3d of July, 1806, Doctor Harris suspended a thermometer six feet above 
the surface, exposed to the full influence of the sun. The mercury rose under 
these circumstances to 131 degrees, though it stood at 90 within doors. On his 
placing its bulb in his mouth it fell to 98. As it frequently rises to 90 in the shade, 
and stands so for some hours, the inhabitants of Charlestown then out of doors 
exposed to the sun are breathing an atmosphere heated to 131 degrees, or 33 
degrees more than the heat of the human body ; and it is supported by them 
without any manifest injury. 

t On December 31, 1790, wind N. E. a severe snow storm began in Charlestown 
which continued for twelve hours. In consequence of which the street.s were 
covered with snow from two to four inches deep. Another took place on the 
28th of February, 1793, wind N. W. which continued for several hours, and till it 
covered the ground iive or six inches. Similar snow storms fell in January 1800, 
and were thrice repeated in twenty-three days, and amounted in the whole to 
more than ten inches. But these phoenomena are rare. 



quently and suddenly take place, and affect the feelings of the 
inhabitants much more than equal, or even greater degrees of 
permanent cold in countries where the climate is more steady, 
and the transitions from heat to cold are more gradual. 

In February the weather is particularly variable. It is often 
rainy. Vegetation commences in warm clear days and in- 
spires hopes of an early spring. Suddenly a northwest wind 
inducing frost, sometimes blasts and always retards these flat- 
tering expectations. In March and April the planting season 
begins and continues till June. 

In July and August the heats increase, and the heavy rains 
set in attended at times with severe thunder and lightning. Sep- 
tember is the principal month of harvest. In it the evenings and 
mornings are chilly, but the sun is extremely oppressive in the 
middle of the day. Storms of rain are produced, accompanied 
sometimes with hurricanes. The leaves of deciduous trees 
begin to fall, and nature by degrees assume the sober dress of 
winter. In October the weather is generally mild and clear. 
About the middle of this month frosts commence and gen- 
erally terminate in the month of March. On their approach 
they bring with them a cure for fevers, then usually prevalent 
The inhabitants of Charlestown keep fires in their houses 
from four to six months in the year ; but there are some warm 
days in every one of them in which fires are disagreeable. 
On the other hand there are some moist cool days in every 
month of the year, with the exception of July and August, in 
which fires are not only healthy but pleasant. These, with 
the addition of June, are the only months which are ex- 
empt from frost in all years, and in every part of South 

Sharp cold weather seldom commences before December, 
though there are several cold days in November, and the eve- 
nings and mornings are generally so. In these months, especially 
the last, vegetation is checked and continues so for about four 
weeks. In this manner the annual circle revolves in the vary- 
ing climate of South Carolina. The last half of December 
and the first half of January is the dullest period of the whole. 
If the year was to be regulated with a particular reference to 
Carolina, it might be said to commence about the middle of 
January, and to terminate about the middle of December; 
for the one begins and the other ends its visible natural vege- 

The hygrometer in Charlestown shows an almost constant 
humidity in the air. For the last seven years it has not marked 
in any one year more than 24 dry days; and the average of 
the whole seven years is less than sixteen dry days for each. 
The variation of the barometer is inconsiderable. It gener- 

PROM 1670 TO 1808. 


ally stands between 30 and 31, but has been as low as 29° 7' 
and as high as 31° 8'. The extremes of heat and cold since 
1791 have been seventy-six degrees asunder. The subjoined 
statement* of meterological observations for the year 1S02 may 
serve as a sample of the climate. 

The evils that every year take place more or less in the 
northern States from drinking cold water, are imknown in 
Charlestown. The water of the wells lies so near the surface 
of the earth that the difference of its temperature from that of 
the common air, is not so great as to create danger ; unless 
in very particular circumstances. A solitary case occurred in 
September, 1791, of a negro fellow who after taking a draught 
of cold water when very warm, suddenly fainted away and 
immediately after became insane and continued so for sev- 
eral days ; but he afterwards recovered. The medium tem- 
perature of the well water in Charlestown is 65°. This is 
twelve degrees above that of the well-water of Philadelphia. 

^' Thunder was distinctly, and in few cases very loudly heard on forty-eight days 
in the interval between April 7, and November 30. Less rain fell in 1802 than in 
any of the seven precedinjj years. The particulars will appear fronisthe follow- 
ing table. 

1802. Days 

of rain. 



1S02. Days 

of rain. 





























■ 2 
















25 8 24 39 26 27 

Though there were only sixty-four days in which an actual fall of rain took 
place, yet the index of the hygrometer pointed to damp in all degrees from one to 
one hundred and one, for three hundred and fifty-two days. As far as we can rely 
on this instrument we must admit that there were only thirteen days of a dry at- 
mosphere in the year 1802; these were, in April 2, May 8, June 1, and Novem- 
ber 3. The highest degree of dryness pointed out in these days was fifteen. 

The direction of the winds for the year 1S02 may be learnt from the following 

Winds. Days. Winds. Days. 

Jantiary, S. to N. W. 17 N. to S. E. 14 

February, '■ 15 " 13 

March, " 20 " 11 

April, , " 22 " 8 

May, " 26 '' 5 

June, " IS " 12 

July, S. 






Winds. Days. Winds. Days, 
to N. W. 21 N. to S. E. 10 






The latest frost in the spring of 1802 was March the 15th; the earliest in autumn 
was October26th, or rather November 1st. The coldest day was February 23d. 
Thermometer 32. The next coldest day was December 9th, thermometer 33. The 
greatest and least degrees of heat in each month was as follows : 







The following table in which the days are classed, will show the number of 
warm days in the respective months, in the year 1802, and the degree of heat 
in each day ; but without fractions. The first column stales the highest range of 





































Instead of sudden deaths from cold water in Charlestown, 
the inhabitants have to lament the same event from the in- 
temperate use of spirituous liquors. The stimulus of ardent 

the thermometer io the whole course of the days opposite thereto in the other 



































19 25 

30 '.'.'. 





















20 .'.'.' 












24 ... 
















26 29 












16 ... 












23 ... 










6 ... 

























21 22 











5 ... 











































27 '.'.'. 





... |... 


20 ... 


» ! 

















9 ... 









8 ... 







10 18 

21 Z 

















22 30 












6 7 

19 31 















23 29 

... 27 













2 3 
16 17 

5 ... 

















26 28 

25 '.'.'. 














15 12 












14 ... 













13 ... 


































































22 24 












21 11 

30 '.". 















17 ... 











20 23 

15 '.'.'. 












12 8 
























29 '.'.'. 









18 ... 










6 ... 













27 ... 



















































FROM 1670 TO 1808. 35 

spirits added to that of excessive heat, drives the blood forcibly 
on the brain and produces fatal consequences. 

The east and northeast winds in winter and spring are 
very injurious to invalids, especially to those who have weak 
lungs or who are troubled with rheumatic complaints. In 
these seasons they bring with them that languor for which 
they are remarkable in other countries ; but in summer, by 
moderating heat they are both pleasant and wholesome. 
Their worst effects are to produce catarrhal complaints and 
colds. Winds from the northwest to the southwest, blowing 
over large tracts of marsh or swamp, are, in summer season, 
unfriendly to health. The north and northwest winds in 
winter, are remarkable for their invigorating effects on the 
human frame. South winds are healthy in summer, but 
much less so in winter. 

Snow is more common and continues longer in proportion 
as we recede from the sea-shore. The further we proceed 
westward till we reach the mountains which divide the 
western from the eastern waters, the weather is colder in the 
winter and vegetation later in the spring. In the western 
parts of the State the days are warmer and the nights are 
cooler than on the sea-coast. While the inhabitants of Charles- 
town can scarcely bear to be covered in the hours of sleep 
with a sheet, they who live in the town of Columbia, one hun- 
dred and twenty computed miles, but probably about one 
hundred in a straight line, to the northwest of it, are not in- 
commoded by a blanket : and this difference is greater as we 
advance more to the west. 

The sum total of rain on an average of five years, viz: from 
1738 to 1742 as observed by Dr. Lining, was 48.6 inches in 
the year; and of ten years, viz: from 1750 to 1759, as ob- 
served by Dr. Chalmers, was 41.75 inches in the year. The 
annual average quantity by the observations of the medical 
society for the last ten years, or from 1797 to 1807 was 49.3 
inches. The greatest quantity in any one of these last ten 
years was 83.4 inches; this was in the year 1799: and the 
least was 38.6 in the year 1800. The greatest quantity in any 
one month of these ten years was 12.9 inches; this was in 
August 1799. In the course of these ten years, four months 
passed without any rain, and several in each of which it was 
less than one inch. The number of rainy days in the last 
five years, or from 1802 to 1807, gives an average of seventy- 
two rainy days for each. 

South Carolina extends about 200 miles on the sea-coast, 
and about 300 to the west. The southern boundary and a 
great part of the northern, runs northwest from the Atlantic 
ocean. As the air grows colder in a western as well as a 


northern direction, the dimate is far from heing uniform. 
The western districts, from their high and dry situation and 
contiguity to the mountains, enjoy a dry, elastic, wholesome 
atmosphere. The middle country partakes of the advantages 
of the upper country, and the disadvantages of the lower. 
The latter bei ng intersected by swamps, bays, and low grounds, 
the waters spread over the face of the country, and in conse- 
quence of heat and stagnation produce mephitic exhalations. 
Thick fogs cover the low lands throughout the night during 
the summer months. In the western districts from August 
until frost, thick fogs also cover the grounds at night, but are 
dissipated by the rays of the sun. Much exposure to these 
fogs early in the morning is said to occasion intermittents. 

In such a situation it is no matter of surprise that fevers 
prevail in places contiguous to fresh, and especially stagnant 
water. The heavy rains generally commence in June and 
July. While they flow, and until their waters by remaining 
stagnant have putrefied, the health of the lower country is not 
particularly affected. But when weeds and vegetables are 
rankest, and putrefaction is excited by the operations of heat 
and moisture, the atmosphere becomes deleterious. Like 
effects being produced by the same causes in Georgia and 
East Florida, winds from these countries in autumn are much 
charged with mephitic qualities. Hence south-westardly 
winds increase all summer fevers. These exciting causes of 
disease lie dormant in the native state of new countries, while 
they are undisturbed by cultivation ; but when the ground is 
cleared and its surface broken they are put into immediate 
activity. Hence it has happened that the upper country of 
South Carolina was more healthy at its first settlement than 
it was some time after. When the putrescent materials are 
expended and the original mephitic effluvia are exhausted and 
cultivation has improved the face of the earth, it again becomes 
healthy. Very little if any of South Carolina has attained to 
this state. The upper country is approximating, and the high 
hills of Santee come nearer to it than any part of the middle or 
low country. In like manner mill-dams, when first erected 
and for many years after, are injurious to the health of the 
vicinity; but when the timber in them is rotted and their 
poisonous effluvia are dissipated, they become comparatively 

Observations on the climate of South Carolina have not 
been made sufficiently long to test by satisfactory evidence 
any considerable changes which have already taken place. 
Those made by the Medical Society since 1791, compared 
with those made by Dr. Lining between 1738 and 1742, and 
with those made by Doctor Lionel Chalmers between 1750 

FROM 1670 TO 180S. 37 

and 1759, seem to prove that the climate in the last seventy- 
years has changed for the better.* The heat of our late sum- 
mers has abated eight degrees. Whether this is really the 
case, or to be referred to a difference of instruments or of sit- 

* The reader is desired to judge for himself whether he has experienced any- 
thiDg comparable to the account of Charlestown given by Doctors Lining and Chal 
mers who were eminent physicians and practiced physic for many years in Charles- 
town. The observations of the former were read before the royal society in May 
1748; extracts from them are as follows: ''In summer the heat of the shaded 
air about two or three in the afternoon is frequently between 90 and 95 degrees; 
and on the 14th, 15lh, and 16th of June- 1738, at 3 P. M. it was 9S; a heat equal to 
the greatest heat of the human body inhealth." "In June 1738, when the heat of the 
shaded air was 98, the thermometer sunk one degree in my arm-pits, but continued at 
98 in my hand and mouth. Twomen who were then in the streets (when the heat was 
probably 124 or 126 degrees, as the shaded air's heat was then 98) dropped sud- 
denly dead, and several slaves in the country at work in the rice fields shared the 
same fate. I saw one ot"the men immediately after he died; his face, neck, breast, 
and hands were livid." The following extracts are taken from the sixteenth to 
the twenty-third page of Doctor Chalmers' account of the weather and diseases of 
South Carolina which was printed in London in 1776, and chiefly refer to a period 
about the middle of the eighteenth century. 

"I cannot convey a better idea of the heat we perceive in passing along the 
streets at noon in summer, than by comparing it to that glow which strikes one 
who looks into a pretty warm oven; for it is so increased by reflection from the 
houses and sandy streets as to raise the mercury sometimes to the 130th division 
of the thermometer, when the temperature of the shaded air may not exceed the 
94th. Solid bodies, more especially metals, absorb so much heat at such times 
that one cannot lay his hand on them but for a short time without being made 
very uneasy. Nay, I have seen a beef-steak of the common thickness so deprived 
of its juices when laid on a cannon for the space of twenty minutes as to be over- 
done according to the usual way of speaking. 

"In order to know what degree of heat my servants were exposed to in the 
kitchen, I suspended a thermometer to a beam eight feet from the floor, and fifteen 
from the fire, the windows and doors being all open on both sides of the house so 
that this was the coolest station in it. But even here the mercury stood at the 
115th division, and notwithstanding this seeming distress, the negroes assured me 
they preferred this sort of weather to the winter's cold. 

"By the 13th of July 1752, a general draught prevailed; for the earth was so 
parched and dry that not the least perspiration appeared on plants, which shrunk 
and withered. All standing waters were dried up as were many wells and 
springs, so that travelers eould not find water either for themselves or their 
beasts for a whole day together. In several settlements no water could be found 
by digging ever so deep, for which reason the inclosures were laid open and the 
cattle drove out to shift for themselves. But very many of them perished for 
want both of pasturage and water, as probably did great numbers of those birds 
that require drink, for none of them were to be seen among us. In short, the dis 
tresses of men and beasts at that time are not to be described. 

'•When the mercury rose to the 97th and 98th degree of the thermometer in 
the shade, the atmosphere seemed in a glow. At bed time it was not in our power 
to lie long still, being obliged to turn almost incessantly in order to cool the side 
we rested on before. Refreshing sleep therefore was a stranger to our eyes, inso- 
much that people were in a manner worn down with watching, and the excessive 
heat together. Nor did this restlessness and frequent tossings prevent our being 
constantly bathed with sweat, though we lay on thin mattrasses spread upon 
the floor, and had all the windows in our room open. Nay, many people lay abroad 
on the pavements. So speedy was the putrefaction of dead bodies that they re- 
quired to be quickly interred. For in the short space of five hours the body of a 
pretty corpulent woman who died as she was ironing hnen, burst the coflin; so 
violent was the putrefaction. In order therefore to prevent such accidents as well 
as to guard against the oflTensive smeil of so rapid a putrescence, it was found 
necessary to wrap dead bodies in sheets that were wrung out of tar, and bind 
them up tightly with cords. 

"During this season a candle was blown out and set in a chimney at ten o clock 
at night, the wick of which continued to burn clearly tillnext morning, and was 
likely to do so for many hours longer. 


uations in which they are kept, must be decided by further 
experience. It is certain that the climates of old countries 
have been materially improved by clearing and cultivating 
the land. We have therefore reason to hope that a meliora- 

"When this violently hot weather began to brealc up, (about the 21st of July) 
every shower was accompanied with most dreadful lightning and thunder, Ijy 
which several persons were liilled in different placeS; besides the damages that 
were done to buildings and vessels. Among other instances of the afarniing 
effects of lightning this year, the distress of one poor family maybe related. The 
father and one of Ills sons being ploughing with four horses, they, together with 
their beasts, were all struck dead by one flash. I have known it to lighten and 
thunder violently, and with but little intermission, lor eight or ten hours together, 
the clouds being all this while so low that in one afternoon the lightning fell on 
sixteen different objects in town, among which were nine dwelling-houses, one 
church, a meeting-house, and five vessels were dismasted in part. 

"During the summer of 17.52, the mercury often rose above the 90th degree of 
the Thermometer throughout the months of May, June, July, and August; and 
for twenty successive days, excepting three in June and July, the temperature of 
the shaded air varied between the 90th and 101st division, and sometimes it must 
have been 30 degrees warmer in the open sunshine, to which great numbers of 
people were daily exposed for many hours. Neither was ever a more healthy 
season known than this, so long as the weather continued steadily warm and fair. 
True Indeed it is, that those who happened to sicken during these intensely hot 
luonths might almost be said to have escaped through the fire when they recovered, 
which few in truth did who were seized with fevers j and all those died on whom 
dropsies had made any considerable progress. 

" All creatures seem equally affected with man by such intensely hot weather; 
for horses sweat profusely in the stable, and flag presently when ridden. Dogs 
seek the shade and lie panting with their tongues lolling out as if they had long 
pursued the chase. Poultry droop the wing and breathe with open throats in the 
manner cocks do when much heated in fighting. Crows and other wild fowls do 
the same, and are so unwilling to move that they will suffer a man to come nearer 
them than at other times before they fly." 

Such was the account given of the weather in Charlestown,byDoctor Chalmers, 
a gentleman of veracity, of medical and philosophical accuracy in making and re- 
cording observations. The business has been taken up and prosecuted ever 
since the year 1791, by the medical society. In the whole of these 18 years the 
highest degree of the mercury has been from two degrees to five less than it was 
in two years of the four observed by Doctor Lining, and from one degree to eight 
less than it was in five years of the ten observed by tloctor Chalmers. Since 1791, 
it has reached 93 only on one day. 

In 1 year it did not exceed 88. In 4 years it did not exceed 89. In 4 years it 
did not exceed 90. In 6 years it did not exceed 91. In 2 years it did not exceed 92. 

In the 10 years viz., from 1750 to 1759, observed by Doctor Chalmers, it was in 
no year less than 90, and only in two years as low as 90. 

In 1 year it reached to 101. In 2 years it reached, but did not exceed 96. In 2 
years do. do. 94. In 2 years do. do. 93. In 1 year do. do. 91. 

In the 4 years observed by Doctor Lining, it was 98 in the year 173S, and 95 in 
1742. Doctor Chalmers' house, in the alley called by his name, was, doubtless, 
something warmer than Doctor Wilson's, at the west end of Broad-street. There 
may have been some variation in the structure or position of the respective ther- 
mometers ; but the difierence in the result is too great to be accounted for from 
these circumstances. It is possible that the apparent abatement of our summer 
heat is only accidental, and that the scorchings in 1738, and in or about the year 
1752, will return in future years; but it is more probable that the degree of heat 
in Charlestown is now Jess than it was 60 or 70 years ago. It may be proved by 
inferences from facts stated in the Bible, and in the Greekand Roman classics, that 
the climate of those parts of Asia and Europe with which we are best acquainted 
have been meliorated to the extent of 15 or 20 degrees within the last 20 or 30 
centuries. That an abatement of cold has taken place in the northern States 
within the two centuries that have passed away since their first settlement can 
also be satisfactorily ascertained. It remains to be proved by further observations 
and future experience, whether the labor of man in clearing and cultivating the 
earth is or is not rewarded by its moderating both heat and cold where they are 

FEOM 1670 TO 1808. 39 

tion of ours will in time take place, and we are not too san- 
guine in believing that it is already begun.* 

George Chalmers, in his political annals of the United Colo- 
nies, printed in 1780, page 541, 542, observes that "Charles- 
town was long unhealthful. From the month of June to 
October, the courts of justice were commonly shut up. No 
public business was transacted. Men fled from it as from a 
pestilence, and orders were given to inquire for situations 
more friendly to health." This statement is corroborated by 
tradition from the elder citizens, who inform us that in the 
time of their fathers the sick were sent from Charlestown to 
expedite their recovery in the more wholesome air of the 
country ; and that the country was preferred on the score of 
health as a place of summer residence. This is by no means 
improbable. The site of Charlestown in its natural state was 
a slip of land stretching south-eastwardly, between two rivers, 
and projecting into the harbor formed by their junction and 
divided into a number of peninsulars by creeks and marshes; 
indenting it on three sides so as to leave but little unbroken 
high land in the middle. The first buildings extended along 
East Bay street, and had a marsh in their whole front. A 
considerable creek, named Vanderhorst's creek, occupied the 
foundation of Water street ; and passing beyond Meeting street, 
sent out a branch to the northward nearly to the Presbyterian 
church. Another creek stretched northwestwardly nearly 
parallel to East Bay street, from the neighborhood of Macleod's 
lots, through Longitude lane, and to the north of it. The 
same kind of low grounds ran up Queen street, then called 
Dock street, beyond the French church, and through Beres- 
ford's alley till it approached Meeting street. The north end 
of Union "street was planted with rice about the middle of the 
18th century. Another very large creek occupied the site of 
the present central market, and extended westwardly beyond 
Meeting street, which diverged southwardly almost to the In- 
dependent church, and northwardly spreading extensively, 
and then dividing into two branches ; running to the north- 
west and to the northeast so as to cover a large portion of 

* When the Romans first invaded Britain, the face of a considerable part of that 
country resembled what Carolina now isj for it was equally covered with marshes, 
ponds and stagnant waters : and in like manner shaded with trees. When culti- 
vation has improved Carolina as much as it has done Britain, they will be both 
equally dry, and if not equally healthy, nearly so. For the excessive cold of the 
one is as injurious to the human frame, as the excessive heat of the other when 
unaccompanied with moisture or putrefaction. 

Eighteen hundred years have passed away in eifecting the change in Britain, 
and it is not yet fully accomplished j for there are in it even now several marshes, 
and a considerable quantity of low, moist, unhealthy ground. Judging of the 
future by the past, three or four hundred years will probably make such a change 
in the face of Carolina as will be little inferior to what Great Britain has slowly 
attained in the course of eighteen centuries. 


ground. Besides the marsh and these creeks which nearly- 
environed three sides of the improved part of Charlestown, 
there was another creek a Uttle to the southward of what is 
now Water street, which stretched westwardly over Church 
street ; and another which ran northwardly up Meeting street, 
and then extended across westwardly nearly to King street. 
A creek ran from the west near where Peter Smith's house 
now stands, and nearly parallel to South Bay till it approached 
the last mentioned creek, and was divided from it by King 
street and a slip of land on each side. Six other creeks ran 
eastwardly from Ashley river, three of which stretched across 
the peninsular so as to approximate to King street. There 
were also ponds and low grounds in different parts of the 
town. One of these extended on the east side of King street 
almost the whole distance between Broad and Tradd streets. 
This was granted to the French church in 1701, but being 
useless in its then state was leased out by them for 50 years. 
In the course of that period the tenants improved and built 
upon it. There was also a large body of low grounds at the 
intersection of Hasell and Meeting streets. The elder inhabi- 
tants often mention a large pond where the court house now 
stands. It is believed that this, though real, was artificial 
It is probable that the intrenchments attached to the western 
fortifications of Charlestown, which extended up and down 
Meeting street from the vicinity of the Independent church to 
the vicinity of the Presbyterian church, were dug so deep as 
to cause a constant large collection of water at that middle 
part of the lines.* It was the site of Johnson's covered half 
moon, and of a draw-bridge over which was the chief com- 
munication between the town and the country. No prudent 
engineer would erect such works as these in a pond, though 
when they were erected in the moist soil of Charlestown the7 
would be very likely to produce one. Whether this was a 
natural or artificial collection of water, there was enough in 
other parts of the town to make it unhealthy. Such, with 
some small alteration was the situation of Charlestown for the 
first 70 years after its settlementf 

To reduce such a quagmire as a great part of Charlestown 
originally was, to a firm, high, and dry state, required time, 
labor, and expense. Much has been done, but much remains 
for fixture enterprise. 

The pond at the south end of Meeting street was filled up 

* Persons now living remember that tliey liave heard the deceased Samuel 
Prioleau, who was born in or about 1718, say that he had swam in the line of 
Meeting street, from the west end of the present Water street to the site of the 
present national Bank. 

f This appears from George Hunter's ichnography of that city, published in 

FROM 1670 TO 1808. 41 

and built upon by Josiah Smith, in the years 1767, 1768, and 
1769, at an expense of about Xl,200 sterling. 

Vauderhorst's creek was tarned into a firm, solid land, be- 
tween the years 1788 and 1792, and obtained the name of 
Water street. 

The oeek running under the Governor's bridge was finally 
obliterated and turned into a market, between the years 1804 
and 1807. The extensive marsh land and low ground to the 
north and west of this creek had been filled up and built upon 
some years before by John Eberly, Anthony Toomer, and 
others. The time when the other creeks were converted into solid 
land and improved, cannot be exactly ascertained. As Charles- 
town extended, and land became more valuable, industrious 
enterprising individuals, by draining marshes and filling up 
creeks, advanced their private interest and contributed to the 
growing salubrity of the town. 

In addition to what has been efi'ected by individuals, for 
converting marsh into solid land, several incidental causes have 
contributed to a similar result. Every vault, cellar, and well, 
that has been dug in Charlestown for 128 years past, brought 
to the surface a part of a sandy soil, which, when laid on soft 
low ground, promoted its induration and elevation. Fires, of 
which there have been many, though destructive of property, 
have not been without their use. The lime, the mortar, and 
broken bricks of the burnt houses, were for the most part added 
to the surface of the ground and corrected its capacity for 
producing disease. In addition to the dryness of the soil, its 
elevation was beneficial. To the latter not only every new 
building, but every inhabitant contributes more or less every 
day. The ofi'als of a single soap boiler sometimes amount to 
500 bushels of ashes in a week. This multiplied by the num- 
ber of the trade, and by the number of weeks that take place 
in a century, and by similar deposits from other persons, 
would contribute materially to the elevation of ground cov- 
ered with houses and crowded with inhabitants. The projec- 
tion of wharves into the adjacent rivers, which are filled up 
with dry materials, changes low unwholesome ground into 
what is high and healthy. Houses now stand in safety which 
are carried out so near to the channel of Cooper river, that 
the ooze, previously obtruded on the senses every ebb tide, is 
now no longer visible. From these and similar additions to 
the soil, Charlestown has been constantly, though slowly, be- 
coming higher and dryer. The increase of an inch in fifteen 
or twenty years would probably be a moderate calculation for 
the aggregate amount of every addition that is made to it in 
that period. One foot less in the height of the land, or one 
foot more in the height of the water in the hurricane of 1752, 


■would, in the opinion of eye witnesses, have inundated every 
spot of ground in Charlestown. Under such circumstances 
the gradual elevation of the surface, increasing with time 
and population, holds out encouraging prospects to poster- 
ity; for the higher and dryer it is the more secure and 
healthy it will be. In a country whose maladies chiefly arise 
from heat and moisture, it is a glorious exploit to redeem it 
from the latter ; which, of the two, is the most plentiful source 
of disease. Every Carolinian who plants a field — builds a 
house — ^fills a pond — or drains a bog, deserves well of his 
country. From the operation of these causes a change for 
the better has already taken place to a certain extent. With 
the exception of the more frequent recurrence of the yellow 
fever, Charlestown is now more healthy than it was thirty or 
forty years ago. The frequent recurrence of that disease is an 
exception to the generality of this remark more in appearance 
than reality. For though it is distressing and fatal to strangers, 
yet, as they are but a very small part of the whole population, 
the aggregate mass of disease for several years past, even with 
that addition, would nevertheless be inferior to what it form- 
erly was. Bilious remitting autumnal fevers, have for some 
time past evidently decreased. Pleurisies, which were form- 
erly common and dangerous, are now comparatively rare ; 
and so easily cured as often to require no medical aid. The 
thrush in children, the cholera morbus, iliac passion or dry 
belly ache, have in a great measure disappeared. April and 
May used to be the terror of parents ; but the diseases which 
thirty years ago occasioned great mortality among children in 
the spring, have for several years past been less frequent and 
less mortal. Consumptions on the other hand have become 
more common; but this is not chargeable on the chmate but 
results from the state of society, and the growing wealth of 
the inhabitants, in conjunction with new dresses, manners, 
and customs. It is also in part to be accounted for from the 
accidental circumstance that several, every year, die in Caro- 
lina of that complaint who had recently arrived with it in its 
advanced stages from the West India islands or the more north- 
ern States. Their unparalleled increase in 1808, is the conse- 
quence of the influenza of 1807, and the present fashionable 

In the medical history of Carolina, the improvement of the 
country is to be viewed only as one cause of the ameliora- 
tion of its diseases. A more judicious medical treatment of the 
sick is another. This will appear by a particular review of the 
history of the small pox from the first settlement of the province, 

The years 1700 and 1717 are the dates of the two first at- 
tacks of the small pox in Charlestown. In both it proved 

FROM 1670 TO 1808. 43 

fatal to a considerable proportion of the inhabitants. It re- 
turned in 1732, but effectual care was taken to prevent its 
spreading. In the year 1738 it was imported in a Guinea 
ship, and spread so extensively that there was not a sufficiency 
of persons in health to attend the sick ; and many perished 
from neglect and want. There was scarcely a house in which 
there had not been one or more deaths.* Doctor Moybray, 
Surgeon of a British man-of-war then in the harbor, proposed 
inoculation ; but the physicians opposed it at first. With the 
exception of Dr. Martini they afterwards came into it. Mr. 
Philip Prioleau was the first person in Charlestown who sub- 
mitted to the operation. The success which attended this 
first experiment encouraged several others to follow the exam- 
ple. The disease soon after abated. 

About the beginning of the year 1760, the small pox was 
discovered in the house of a pilot on White Point — ^^guards 
were placed round the house, and every precaution taken to 
prevent the spreading of the disease ; but in vain. When 
the persons first infected at White Point were either dead or 
well, the house in which they had lain was ordered to be 
cleansed. In doing this a great smoke was made, which, be- 
ing carried by an easterly wind, propagated the disease exten- 
sively to the westward in the line of the smoke. Inoculation 
was resolved upon and became general. 

When this practice was first introduced, and for several 
years after, the inoculators loaded their patients with mercury 

* From a manuscript in the hand-writing, and found among: the papers of the ven- 
erable Thomas Lamboll who died in 1775, the following particulars are collected 
relative to this disease. "It first attracted public notice in iVIay, 1738. In the next 
month a fast day was appointed by proclamation. Soon after the disease com- 
menced, a report was circulated that tar water was not only a good preparative 
for receiving, but a preventive of the small pox. Many barrels of tar were sold 
and used for that purpose ; but the author soon after took the infection and died, 
and his empiricism died with him. 

"By an account dated September 30th, of the same year, it appeared that the 
whole number of deaths was 411; and the whole number which had taken the small 
pox was 2,112, of which 833 were whites, and 1,279 blacks. Of the former, 647 took 
the disease in its natural way, and of them 157 died. Of lb8 whites who took the 
disease by inoculation, nine died. Of the 1,279 blacks who took the disease 1,028 
had it in the natural way, and of them 138 died. The remainder 253 were inocu- 
lated, and of them seven died." 

From these facts as stated by Mr. Lamboll, it appears that of the white persons 
who took the small pox in the natural way, nearly one in four died ; but of such as 
took it by inoculation, the deaths were only one in twenty. Of the negroes who 
took the disease in the natural way, nearly one in seven died; but of such as took 
it by inoculation, the deaths were only one in thirty-six. ■ It is well known that 
negroes have the small pox as bad, if not worse than white people, where the 
treatment of both is the same. That they fared better than their owners on this 
occasion must be referred to their being under less restraint with regard to cold 
air. In treating the small pox, an excess of care and confinement is much worse 
than no care or confinement wliatever. From the same manuscript it appears that 
on the21st of September, an act of assembly passed at Ashley ferry against inocu- 
lating for the small pox in Charlestown, or within two miles of it after the 10th of 
October 1738. 


and tortured them with deep crucial incisions in which ex- 
traneous substances, impregnated with the variolous matter, 
were buried. There were then able physicians in Charlestown ; 
but they were so mistaken with regard to the proper method 
of treating the disease that it was no uncommon practice to 
nail blankets over the shut windows of closed rooms, to ex- 
clude every particle of cool fresh air from their variolous pa- 
tients whose comfort and safety depended on its free admis- 
sion. The consequences were fatal. Charlestown was a scene 
of the deepest affliction. Almost every family was in distress 
for the loss of some of its members, but so occupied with 
their attentions to the sick that they could neither indulge the 
pomp nor the luxury of grief The deaths from the smallpox 
were nearly eleven-twelfths of the whole mortality in Charles- 
town. Only eighty-seven died of other diseases, while the 
deaths from the small pox amounted to nine hundred and 
forty. Of these only ninety-two died under inoculation. Fif- 
teen hundred persons are said to have been inoculated, in one 
day ; and it is certain from the bills of mortality that 848 per- 
sons died of the disease who were not inoculated. If we 
allow that only one in four died, as in the year 1738, the 
whole number who took the disease in the natural way must 
have been 3,392. Precision in numbers is not attainable; but 
enough is known and remembered by several persons still 
alive to prove that the year 1760 was one of the most mel- 
ancholy and distressing that ever took place in Charlestown. 

In the year 1763 the small-pox returned; but as there were 
few to have it, and inoculation was generally adopted, its rav- 
ages were not extensive. For seventeen years after, the small- 
pox was seldom or never heard of During the siege of Charles- 
town it was introduced, and immediately after the surrender 
of the town on the 12th of May, 1780, a general inoculation 
took place. As the cool regimen was then universally adopted, 
the disease passed over without any considerable loss or incon- 

Since the revolution, all the laws which interdicted the in- 
troduction and spreading of the small-pox have been repealed. 
There have been of course some cases of small pox almost 
every year, but nothing very general or alarming in any one. 
A small proportion of those who were inoculated died or suf- 
fered inconveniences from it; but to nineteen of twenty, it was 
a trifling disorder. This was a great triumph in favor of suf- 
fering humanity, but it was far short of what followed. In 
the year 1802, vaccination was introduced into Charlestown, 
within four years after Dr. Jenner had published its efficacy 
in preventing the small pox, though eighteen years had elapsed 
between the first inoculation in England for the small pox and 

FROM 1670 TO 1808. 45 

the adoption of that practice in Carolina. This substitute for 
the small pox was introduced into Charlestown by David Ram- 
say, who after many trials succeeded in February, 1802, in com- 
municating the disease to his son Nathaniel. From him origi- 
nally, or remotely, some thousands have received the disease. 
No case has yet occurred in which a clearly marked case of 
small pox has followed a clearly marked case of vaccination. 
Mistakes have been made with respect to both diseases, and 
the one has in some instances been communicated to persons 
who had previously received the seed of the other. From 
these causes, added to the ignorance and carelessness of some 
vaccinators, the confidence of a few in the Jennerian discovery 
has been weakened. But that the real vaccine is a preventive 
of the real small pox is as certain, from the testimony and 
experience of thousands, as that the inoculated small pox se- 
cures against the natural. Thus, in the short space of seventy 
years, the small pox has been moderated in Carolina from the 
natural to the artificial. The latter so alleviated by mild treat- 
ment, and particularly by the cool regimen, as to become for 
the most part a trifling disease; and finally an opportunity 
has been given to avoid the dangers and inconvenience of 
both, by a safe and easy substitute. The future ravages of 
the small pox may be fairly put to the account of the careless- 
ness, the ignorance or the prejudices of the people.* Though 
ordinary fevers, since the improvement of Charlestown, have 
been less frequent and less dangerous, yet for the last sixteen 
years the yellow fever has recurred much oftener than in any 
preceding period. This has not been satisfactorily accounted 
for. If we refer it to some new state of the air, we virtually ac- 

*The Royal College of Physicans, in London, in obedience to the command of 
his Britannic majesty, "To inquire into the state of vaccine inoculation in the 
United Kingdom," made a report on the subject on the lOth of April, 1807, from 
which the following extracts are taken : 

'■In the British islands some hundred thousands have been vaccinated. In our 
possessions in the East Indies upwards of eight hundred thousand, and among 
the nations of Europe the practice has become general. 

"Vaccination appears to be in general perfectly safe; the instances to the con 
trary being extremely rare. The disease excited by it is slight, and seldom pre- 
vents those nnder it from following their ordinary occupations. It has been com- 
municated with safety to pregnant women, to children during dentition and in 
their earliest infancy, in all which respects it possesses material advantages over 
inoculation for the small pox. 

"The security derived from vaccination against the small-pox, if not absolutely 
perfect, is as nearly so as can perhaps be expected from any human discovery; 
for amongst several hundred thousand cases, with the results of which the college 
have been made acquainted, the number of alleged failures has been surprisingly 
small; so much so as to form certainly no reasonable objection to the general 
adoption of vaccination; for it appears that there are not nearly so many failures 
in a given number of vaccinated persons as there are deaths in an equal number 
of persons inoculated for the small pox. 

"The testimonies before the College of Physicians are very decided in declaring 
that vaccination does less mischief to the constitution, and less frequently gives 
,rise to other diseases, than the small pox, either natural or inoculated." 


knowledge our ignorance. No visible obvious cause can be 
designated why it should have recurred almost every year of 
the last fifteen, and not once as an epidemic disease for the 
forty years which immediately preceded the year 1792. 

In the year 1699 or 1700, in addition to the calamities re- 
sulting from a desolating fire and a fatal epidemic small pox, 
a distemper broke out in Charlestown which carried off an 
incredible number of people, among whom were Chief-Justice 
Bohun, Samuel Marshal, the Episcopal clergyman, John Ely, 
the Receiver-General, Edward Rawlins, the Provost-Marshal, 
and almost one-half of the members of Assembly. Never 
had the colonies been visited with such general distress and 
mortality. Some whole families were carried off, and few- 
escaped a share of the public calamities. Almost all were 
lamenting the loss either of their habitations by the devour- 
ing flames, or of friends and relations by this disease or the 
small pox. Anxiety and distress were visible on every coun- 
tenance. Many of the survivors seriously thought of aban- 
doning a country on which the judgments of heaven seemed 
to fall so heavy. Dr. Hewatt, from whom the preceding ac- 
count is taken, designates this malady by the general appella- 
tion of "an infectious distemper.'' It was generally called the 
plague by the inhabitants. From tradition, and other circum- 
stances, particularly the cotemporaneous existence of the yellow 
fever in Philadelphia, there is reason to believe that this mal- 
ady was the yellow fever; and if so, was the first appearance 
of that disorder in Charlestown, and took place in the nine- 
teenth or twentieth year after it began to be built. 

The same author states, "that in 1703 an epidemical dis- 
temper raged at Charlestown, which swept off a vast number 
of inhabitants; and as the town was threatened by the French 
and Spaniards, the Governor, who called the inhabitants to its 
assistance, held his head-quarters about half a mile distant 
from the town, on account of the contagious distemper which 
then raged therein ; not wishing to expose his men to the dan- 
gerous infection, unless from necessitJ^" These circumstances 
make it probable that this was also the yellow fever. If so, 
this was its second visit, and only three or four years subse- 
quent to the first. 

The same author states, "that the summer of 1728 was 
uncommonly hot in Carolina; that in consequence thereof 
the face of the earth was entirely parched, the pools of stand- 
ing water dried up, and the beasts of the field reduced to the 
greatest distress; and that an infectious and pestilential dis- 
temper, commonly called the 'yellow fever,' broke out in town, 
and swept off' multitudes of the inhabitants, both white and 
black. As the town depended entirely on the country for 

FROM 1670 TO 1808. 47 

fresh provisions, the planters would sufler no person to carry- 
supplies to it, for fear of catching the infection and bringing 
it to the country. The. physicians knew not how to treat the 
uncommon disorder, which was suddenly caught and proved 
quickly fatal. The calamity was so general, that few could 
grant assistance to their distressed neighbors. So many fu- 
nerals happening every day while so many lay sick, white 
persons sufficient for burying the dead were scarcely to be 
found. Though they were often interred on the same day 
they died, so quick was the putrefaction, so offensive and 
infectious were the corpses, that even the nearest relations 
seemed averse from the necessary duty." This is the first 
•direct mention of the yellow fever in the history of Carolina. 

From the information of Dr. Prioleau, derived from the 
manuscripts of his accurate and observing grandfather, the 
venerable Samuel Prioleau, who died in the year 1792, at the 
age of seventy-four, it appears "that in the year 1732 the 
yellow fever began to rage in May, and continued till Sep- 
tember or October. In the heighth of the disorder there were 
from eight to twelve whites buried in a day, besides people of 
color. The ringing of the bells was forbidden, and little or 
no business was done. In the year 1739, the yellow fever 
raged nearly as violently as in the year 1732. It was observed 
to fall most severely on Europeans. In 1745 and 1748 it 
returned, but with less viotence; however, many young peo- 
ple, mostly Europeans, died of it. It appeared again, in a few 
cases, in 1753 and 1755, but did not spread. In all these visi- 
tations it was generally supposed that the yellow fever was. 
imported, and it was remarked that it never spread in the 
country, though often carried there by infected persons, who 
died out of Charlestown, after having caught the disease in it." 

For forty-four years after 1748, there was no epidemic at- 
tack of this disease, though there were occasionally in differ- 
ent summers a few sporadic cases of it. In the year 1792 a 
new era of the yellow fever commenced. It raged in Charles- 
town in that year, and in 1794, 1795, 1796, 1797, 1799, 1800, 
1801, 1803, 1804, and 1807. The number of deaths from it 
in these, its worst years, were — 

Deaths.— In 1799, 239; in 1800, 184; in 1802, 96; in 1804, 
148; in 1807, 162. 

It appeared slightly in the years 1803 and 1805. In both 
years its victims did not exceed 59. In the years 1793, 1798, 
and 1808, the disease is not mentioned at all, and in the year 
1806 it is only mentioned as having occurred in a very few 
cases, under particular circumstances. In its visitations it 
extended from July to November, but was most ripe in August 
and September. With a very few exceptions, chiefly chil- 


dren, it exclusively fell on strangers. The unseasoned negroes 
were not exempt from its ravages, but they escaped oftener 
than other strangers, and when attacked, had the disease" in a 
slighter degree, and if properly treated were more generally 
cured. Persons, both black and white, arriving from the West 
India Islands enjoy similar exemptions from the yellow fever 
of Charlestown. In the years 1796 and 1799 it raged with its 
greatest violence, but has since considerably abated both in fre- 
quency and violence. This abatement is partly owing to the 
diminished number of subjects, for strangers have been cau- 
tious of residing in or even visiting Charlestown in the warm 
months. It is also to be in part ascribed to a more judicious 
treatment of the disease; for physicians now cure a greater 
proportion of their patients laboring under it, especially when 
they apply for relief in its first' stage, than some years ago, 
when it was a new disease in the practice of the oldest and 
most experienced of the faculty.* Nevertheless, there is rea- 
son to believe that a real abatement has taken place. Nor is 
this uncommon; for diseases, like other natural phenomena, 
come and go. Such has been the history of the yellow fever 
in Charlestown from its settlement to the present time. Soli- 
tary cases originated in the country, but they were few in 
number and not often repeated. 

The laws of Carolina guard against the yellow fever, as an 
imported contagions disease. The uniform experience of the 
physicians in Charlestown, since the year 1792, proves that it 
is neither one nor the other; for in no instance has a physi- 
cian, nurse, or other attendant on persons laboring'nnder this 
disease, caught it from them. Several, after taking it in 
Charlestown, carried it with them and died in the country, 
yet it never spread nor was communicated to any one who 
attended on them. In every such case of mortality the disease 
and the subject of it expired together. The quarantine laws 
exist in the statute book, and impose useless restrictions on 
commerce; but the execution of them is so far relaxed as not 
to be unreasonably inconvenient. The present policy adopted 

®The detailed particulars of the yellow fever in Charlestown in the year 1802 
may serve as a sample of it in other seasons. The whole number of deaths from 
that disease in that year was ninety-six. Of these two took place in August, 
sixty-four in September, and thirty in October. In the whole number there wa.s 
not a single native of Charlestown, though five of them were born in South, and 
one in North Carolina; twenty-one were born in England, twenty in the northern 
States, nineteen in Ireland, eight in Germany, seven in Scotland, five in France, 
one in Spain, one in Prussia, and one in IWadeira. The birth-place of the remain- 
ing seven could not be ascertained. There was not a single black and only one 
mulatto died of this fever in 1S02; but they were not equally fortunate in other 
years. One of the subjects to whom it proved fatal, had resided three years, partly 
in Charlestown and partly on Sullivan's Lsland. One had resided two years, two 
a year and a half, and eighten for eleven or twelve months in Charlestown. The 
residence of the remainder varied from eight months to six days. 

FROM 1670 TO 1808. 49 

by the City Council, founded on the recommendation of the 
medical society, proceeds on the idea of enforcing cleanliness 
in the houses, yards, streets, harbor and shipping, as the best 
practicable means of guarding against the yellow fever and other 
diseases incidental to the climate. These are all aggravated by 
the excess of solar heat. The diminution of that exciting cause 
of disease would be of great service. From this/if it could be 
effected in conjunction with cleanliness and a high dry surface 
of the soil, both of which have been already attained in Charles- 
town to a considerable degree, a melioration of the health of 
the inhabitants might be confidently expected. Two remedies 
for diminishing heat have been proposed. Shading the streets 
by trees, or projections from the dwelling-houses, so that a 
person might pass along without exposure to the direct rays 
of the sun. No one can walk before the National bank with- 
out wishing it was practicable to enjoy a similar refreshing 
shade in every other part of the city. The second proposed 
remedy is the plentiful introduction of water, so as to give a 
facility for washing and cooling the streets with an artificial 
shower whenever wanted. Streets either paved or covered 
with gravelly materials, which Avould transmit but not stagnate 
superincumbent water, and occasionally watered, would proba- 
bly prevent or at least mitigate diseases, and certainly moderate 
the distressing heat of summer, and refresh the inhabitants. 

Diseases of the throat are common in Carolina. Its varia- 
ble weather often produces inflammatory affections of that 
organ. A disease thereof, accompanied with the scarlet fever, 
or the scarlatina anginosa, frequently recurs, but is rarely 
mortal. An apparently slight affection of the throat, accom- 
panied with a laborious respiration resembling the croup, 
about the year 1785, proved very destructive to many chil- 
dren, and in a few instances to three or four in one family. 
It has seldom recurred since that period. 

The measles may be reckoned among the epidemic diseases 
of Carolina. They are sometimes directly and speedily fatal, 
especially when treated with heating remedies, on the absurd 
theory of forcing a sweat and expediting their eruption, but 
oftener lay the foundation for slow wasting consumptions; 
especiallv where bleeding and a low regimen has been neg- 
lected. The visitations of measles have not been matter of 
historical record, except in the journals of the Medical Soci- 
ety, from which it appears that they have occurred in 1791, 
'2, '3, '4, '5, '6, and 1802 and 1803 ; but no particular mortaUty 
is noted as attached to the disease. 

Our elder citizens recollect that the measles were not only 
epideinic, but frequently fatal in the year 1772 ; especially 
when thev fell on the bowels or lungs. Tradition informs us 


that in the years 1747, 1759, 1775, or 1776, they were also 
common and fatal; principally by the bowel complaints 
which followed them. 

Influenza in like manner, though a serious and frequent 
epidemic, has seldom been the subject of record. 

Many persons remember that the influenza, after traversing 
the United States in 1789, reached Carolina and spread ex- 
tensively. It was very fatal on the plantations near the north- 
eastern line of the State, especially to prime full grown negroes. 
William Alston lost above thirty of that description. The 
whole mucous membrane, through all its recesses in the sinu- 
ses of the OS frontis, was most grievously aff'ected. Deafness, 
loss of taste and smell, for a long period were among its con- 
sequences. More have reason to remember the influenza of 
1807. Gradually advancing from the northern States, it 
reached Charlestown early in September.* It spared neither 
age nor sex, though children oftenest escaped altogether; or 
if attacked, got through the disease with the least inconveni- 
ence. The reverse was the case with aged persons. It soon 
became so general that in some large families there was not a 
sufficiency of persons in health to attend on the sick. In a 
few Aveeks it is supposed that 14,000 persons, or half the popu- 
lation of Charlestown, had been afflicted with that disease. 
Of these, forty-five died ; thirteen of whom were white persons 
and thirty-two negroes. The former were generally aged 
persons. The disease spread on all sides into the country, 
The mortality in Georgetown and Beaufort was considerably 
greater than in Charlestown. The disease in many cases was 
so mild as to preclude the necessity of application to a physi- 
cian. In dangerous cases, when medical aid was required, 
bleeding, blistering, emetics, cathartics, and sudorifices were 
chiefly relied upon. 

The influenza in its commencement resembled the yellow- 
fever with a pain in and over the eyes^ and with red streaks 
over their whites. A sharp acrid serum was discharged from 
the eyes, and sometimes from the nostrils. In such cases a 
hoarseness and soreness of the throat was usual. The sense 
of smelling was sometimes impaired, the hearing was fre- 
quently injured, and in a few cases the powers of vision were 

"* This disease originated in New York in the month of August, and spread from 
that centre in all directions. It reached Canada in October, and had extended to 
the western and southwestern States, and even to the Havana in the course of 
three months. Members of Congress on their way to "Washington, where they 
were summoned to assemble on the 26th of October, while traveling from their 
respective homes, met the disease in every State. Its progress was so rapid as 
to outstrip the slow movements of contagion, and must have arisen from some 
morbid constitution of the air. This is more probable from the circumstance that 
it was caught at sea by persons approaching the coast of America from distant 

FROM 1670 TO 1808. 51 

diminished. A tightness and stricture across the breast, with 
a dry cough, was common. The matter expectorated was 
occasionally tinged with blood. The whole mucous mem-, 
brane lining the fauces, nostrils, and bronchia, was uncom- 
monly stuffed with phlegm. In the aged the disease assumed 
the form of a peripneumony ; in the young and plethoric, that 
of a pleurisy. Persons of a consumptive diathesis, or who 
had been subject to old coughs or diseases of the breast, suf- 
fered most and oftenest relapsed. Spittings of blood and other 
serious precursors of consumption attacked such patients after 
the disease had in their cases apparently vanished and gen- 
erally disappeared. An uncommon increase of consumptions 
followed in the year ISOS, which exceeded anything ever 
before known in Charlestown. 

The whooping cough rages more or less almost every year, 
but its visits iiave not been generally recorded. The returns 
of yellow fever, and of small pox in the early period of our 
history, made such strong impressions on the minds of the 
people as to form seras in the domestic history of private fami- 
lies. But tlie whooping cough though an epidemic disease, 
occasionally fatal, and one which attacks almost every person, 
yet it has been for the most part soon forgotten. It is never- 
theless recorded that in the year 1804 it proved fatal to sixty- 
four children in Charlestown. It has been remarked that in 
seasons when Charlestown was healthy, the country was 
sickly. The reverse has also been noticed. Diseases are 
most ripe in the city in summer, but in the country in autumn. 
A constitution of the air prevails in one which is different 
from that of the other. For three months, July, August, and 
September, a free intercourse between them is not without 
danger. They fare best who keep steadily for that period 
either in the city or the country. These remarks, always true, 
have been eminently so in 1808; for in that most healthy 
summer there were few mortal cases of fever which originated 
in Charlestown, while excursions for a few days to the coun- 
try in many cases proved fatal. The fevers which in sum- 
mer and autumn attack the inhabitants of the city in conse- 
quence of their going to the country, lie dormant for some 
time, more or less ; for a week, nine or ten days, and in some 
cases longer. That all danger is past cannot be certainly 
known in less than twenty-one days after returning to the 

The diseases of negroes in Carolina differ in several par- 
ticulars from those of white people. Palsies, apoplexies, and 
madness dyspepsia, and the whole train of maladies con- 
nected with the passions and acts of the mind, are less 
frequent with the former than the latter. Removed frorn 
all anxiety concerning their own support, or that of their 


children ; incapable of holding property or of advancing 
themselves, their minds are generally made up to their situa- 
tion, and they are free from many tormenting passions and 
corroding cares which prey upon the health and break the 
hearts of their owners. To colds, fevers, and such complaints 
as result from a variable climate, they are rather more liable 
than white people. The dread of losing time and of incurring 
expense for the recovery of health is no inducement with them 
to take care of it. All tliese losses and all cares respecting 
future events fall oa their maslers. A respite from labor com- 
pensates for the pains of slight indispositions. They are 
therefore incorrigibly careless, and wantonly expose them- 
selves to the dangers which result from the sudden changes 
of the weather. Their common intermitting fevers are easily 
cured, and seldom require more than a smart emetic; but 
epidemic fevers occasionally break out among them which 
not unfrequently baffle medical skill. These have no regular 
periods of returning. They were frequent in the revolutionary 
war, especially when great numbers of negroes were crowded 
in small confined spots. The disease had different names and 
was occasionally called camp, hospital, gaol, putrid, nervous, 
and malignant fevers. Its supposed causes are filth, impure 
air, putrid animal and vegetable effluvia, a moist atmosphere, 
great fatigue, and low scanty diet ; but sometimes they break 
out without any visible known cause, and in both cases prove 
fatal to numbers of the most valuable negroes in particular 
neighborhoods or plantations, while the white people gen- 
erally escape. The treatment of blacks laboring under these 
novel diseases* puzzled the physicians; for the symptoms 
were so various in difl'erent attacks that the best informed 
could not always trust former experience, and were some- 
times obliged in the first cases to grope their way. These 
limited epidemics have been so destructive at different times 
to negro property as to add much to the uncertainty of plan- 
ters' estates. 

Of the diseases which have been reviewed, Carolina has its 

* Among the novel diseases of negroes was one which became the subject of 
remark at the beginning of the revolutionary war, when large bodies of blacks 
were employed as laborers on the public works. This had the external appear- 
ance of dropsy, or universal anasarca, and was accompanied with extreme de- 
bility, great thirst, loss of appetite, and in many cases quickly proved mortal. In 
the cure of it the salt of tobacco was first extensively introduced into practice in 
Charlestown, and it has ever since maintained a superior rank among the medi- 
cines which are prescribed in dropsical complaints. 

During the siege of Charlestown in 17S0, a fever, answering exactly to the de- 
scription_ of the hospital fever, broke out among the negroes employed on the 
works of the besiegers, which depopulated many of the plantations in the neigh- 
borhood of the scene of military operations. After the siege, this disease made 
its appearance among the negroes confined in prison, and carried oft' multitudes. 
S'iveral of these turned yellow before they died. The mortality from it was so 
great that in one case eighty negroes given by an alfectionate father to an only 
son, were in a few weeks reduced to forty-two. 

FROM 1670 TO 180S. 53 

full proportion. Of others it has less. Gravel and nephritic 
complaints in general have at all times been comparatively 
rare. The operation of lithotomy which has been performed 
seventeen times in Philadelphia by Doctor Bond, sixty times 
by Doctor John Jones of New York, and two hundred times 
by Doctor Turner of Connecticut, has been rarely necessary 
in Carolina. Only three operations can be distinctly and cer- 
tainly recollected as having been performed on its inhabitants; 
two by Doctor Turner, and one by Doctor Glover. In each of 
these three cases the operation succeeded. Consumptions, 
though they have increased in Charlestown very much within 
the last ten years, and within the last four years from ninety- 
two to upwards of two hundred fatal cases in the year, and 
even more so since the general influenza of 1807, yet are much 
rarer in Carolina than in more northern climates. The same 
may be said of rheumatisms. In the statistic accounts of 
Scotland, the gezreral prevalence of that distressing disease is 
referred to the severity of their cold weather, to the dampness 
of their houses uncorrected by large fires, and to a deficiency 
of fuel. The superabundance of wood, and particularly of 
light-wood, in the country enables even the poor in Carolina 
to guard against such complaints as far as they are the effects 
of cold. The consequences of being enveloped in, and breath- 
ing a terebinthinate air are not fully known. Thereis reason 
to believe that they are eminently beneficial. It is an old and 
well authenticated observation that persons, whether white or 
black, employed in burning tar kilns are always healthy. 
Miserable will be the lot of the poor, both black and white, in 
Carohna, when light-wood ceases to be common or to be 
easily procured. Of the numerous emigrants from colder 
countries there have been several who, though troubled in the 
laud of their nativity with painful rheumatic affections or 
threatened with serious diseases of the breast, have found on 
their settling in Carolina that the first either vanished or were 
mitigated both in violence and frequency and that the last, if 
not cured, were rendered stationary. 

The rickets, scrophula, scurvy, and diabetes, especially the 
first, are very uncommon in this State. Children, even slaves, 
seldom experience the parchings of hunger; especially on plan- 
tations where provisions are raised. Their youthful limbs 
are not crippled by early confinement at sedentary employ- 
ments. Play is the chief business of most of them till they 
are sufficiently grown to work in the field or to do something 
of consequence. Hypochondriasis,* and indeed the whole tribe 

» It is probable that the state of mind which leads to self-murder is less common 
ill Carolina than in more northern latitudes ; but it is certain from an examination 
of the records of the Coronors office in Charlestown that few natives commit that 
foul crime in comparison with strangers. From this authentic source of informa- 


of chronical diseases is less common in this warm climate 
than in those which are cold. The dangers and difficulties of 
parturition are also comparatively less. The general character 
of most diseases in Carolina is acute. Their onset is violent, 
their progress rapid, their termination speedy, and they require 
energetic remedies. Short credit is given to juvenile indul- 
gences. The follies of youth and their distressing consequen- 
ces follow almost immediately in the order of cause and effect. 
He that wishes to do the great business of life by preparation 
for futurity, or even to make a prudent and judicious testa- 
mentary disposition of his property, would do well to arrange 
these matters before serious sickness commences; for that is 
often so rapid as to leave little leisure to attend to anything 
further than the prescriptions of the physician till reason de- 
parts or death closes the scene forever. 

Fevers are the proper endemics of Carolina, and occur of- 
tener than any, probably than all other diseases. These are the 
effects of its warm, moist climate, of its low grounds, and 
stagnant waters. In their mildest season they assume the type 
of intermittents ; in their next grade they are bilious remit- 
tents, and under particular circumstances in their highest 
grade constitute yellow fever. The efforts of the inliabitants to 
guard against these diseases merit a place in medical history. 
Their first plan is said to have been retirement from Charles- 
town to the country. This may have answered for the first 
thirty or forty years ; for in that period very little of the 
swamps had been opened, and the high and dry pine lands 
were the chief spots both of residence and improvement. The 
increased cultivation of rice, the diffusion of marsh miasmata 
from the open cultivated low grounds, and the location of settle- 
ments near them in process of time turned the balance of 
health in favor of Charlestown. The wealthy planters who 
could afford the expenses of a double residence, spent their 
summers in town and their winters in the country. Within 
the last sixteen years the frequent recurrence of yellow fever 
in the crowded metropolis has induced numbers to adopt 
other plans. The sea islands, particularly Sullivan's and 
Beaufort, Edding's bay, and the sea-shore, generally has been 
resorted to as places of healthy retirement during the summer 
season. With the same views Walterborough, Springfield, 
Summerville,Pineville, and some other smaller establishments, 

tion it appears that in the first eight years of the 19th century there were twenty- 
four self-murderers in CharlestOM-n. Of these, only two were born in the State. 
Six were newly imported Africans, whose situation was peculiar. Nine were 
from the northern parts of Europe, four from the more northern States of Amer- 
ica; only two from France, and one from Jamaica. Migrations from north to 
south are frequently undertaken with extravagant expectations of great advan- 
tages from the change. These often fail and advantage is taken of their failure 
against the unfortunate for the worst of purposes by the worst of beings. 

FROM 1670 TO 1808. 55 

have suddenly grown into villages. A medical opinion, ap- 
parently well founded, has generally prevailed that the en- 
demic diseases of Carolina were not the effect of heat alone, 
nor exclusively of superahundant moisture; but the result 
of both, producing and combining with putrefaction. The 
conclusion followed that health might be enjoyed in any 
situation exempt from putrefaction and moisture, and at 
a sufficient distance from the miasmata to which they give 
birth. Experience had proved that these miasmata seldom 
extended their effects as far as three miles, even to the lee- 
ward of stagnant putrefying materials, and much less on the 
windward side. Spots of high and dry land covered with pine 
trees, and at a sufficient distance from ponds, swamps, and 
other reservoirs of poisonous efBluvia, have been diligently 
sought for; and to them families have retired from their dwell- 
ing houses, injudiciously located in the vicinity of the swamps, 
and there passed the summers sociably with their neighbors 
allured to the same place with the same views. Advantages 
neither foreseen nor calculated upon have resulted from these 
temporary villages. They became the seats of schools and 
of churches, neither of which were within the convenient 
grasp of the inhabitants when dispersed over the adjacent 
country. Experience confirmed the theory which gave birth 
to these estabhshments, for their inhabitants have generally 
escaped the fevers of the season ; nor were their planting in- 
terests materially injured, for they could make short excur- 
sions to their plantations and return without inhaUng the 
seeds of fever. Numbers in this manner parry the diseases 
of summer at the trifling expense of a slight building in the 
pine woods. The residents on Sullivan's island enjoy a whole- 
some air, inferior to none in the world, with the exception of 
persons laboring under diseases of the breast, many of whom 
are injured by the tonic qualities of the island air. Enjoy- 
ments without alloy are rarely the lot of man. While the in- 
habitants of that salubrious island revelled in health, and 
rioted in intellectual and social pleasures, they were surprised 
with the hurricane of 1804 which brought their lives into 
serious danger, and from which there was no possibility of 
escape. Apprehensions of the return of similar scenes have 
been ever since a source of annual anxiety. The extremity 
of heat elsewhere which makes the coolness of the island so 
great a luxury, is the exciting cause of these convulsions of 
nature which render a residence thereon dangerous. Expe- 
rience of more than a century has demonstrated that hurri- 
canes are always preceded by extreme hot weather, and gen- 
erally accompanied with the yellow fever. They occur in the 
same season, and follow in the train of each other as effect 


and cause. In such a case between the dread of pestilence in 
the city, of common fever in the country, and of an expected 
hurricane on the island, the' inhabitants of the latter are at 
the close of every warm season in a painful state of anxiety, 
not knowing what course to pursue, nor what is best to be 

An opinion generally prevails that South Carolina is un- 
healthy. This is neither correctly true nor wholly false. A 
great proportion of the State, especially of the lower country, 
is for the most part inundated. In it sluggish rivers, stagnant 
swamps, ponds, and marshes are common; and in or near to 
them putrefaction is generated. In all these places, and for 
two or three miles adjacent to them, the seeds of febrile dis- 
eases are plentifully sown and from them are disseminated ; 
particularly between the months of June and November. On 
the other hand, the sea-shore and sea islands are for the most 
part healthy. The same may be affirmed of the ridges of land 
between the rivers. These extend from ten to forty or fifty 
miles. After deducting inland swamps, and two or three miles 
on the margin of the rivers, and around the ponds and 
marshes, many thousands of acres of high, dry, and healthy 
land will remain. As we advance westwardly these deduc- 
tions lessen. The swamps terminate about 120 miles from the 
ocean. Beyond them are extensive settlements in which the 
blessings of health are generally enjoyed, with the exception 
of the margins of rivers and the vicinity of ponds and mill- 
dams. This is the case in the districts of Abbeville, Laurens, 
Spartanburg, York, Union, Newberry, Chester, Lancaster, Fair- 
field, and eminently so in Pendleton and Greenville. The 
greatest part of the high hills of Santee, though only seventy 
or eighty miles in a direct line from the ocean, is also in gen- 
eral, healthy. Such is the medical division of South Carolina 
as resulting from the natural qualities of the soil. Art has 
done something and might do much more for the improve- 
ment of the country. Every drop of superabounding and at 
present injurious moisture that is therein, may be turned to 
some useful account. When, suifered to stagnate it is a curse, 
when properly dispersed it is a blessing. Marshes, low grounds, 
and ponds may be drained by the industry of man, and their 
surplus water made to fertilize the adjacent thirsty soil. The 
removal of obstructions in the rivers and creeks would give mo- 
tion to much stagnant or sluggish water, and convert moist into 
dry ground. Inland navigation connected with irrigation might 
be carried to such an extent as to give an active and import- 
ant use to much of that water which is now the hot bed of 
putrefaction. These things have been done in China and 
may be done in Carolina. Every step that is taken in this 

FROM 1670 TO 1808. 57 

glorious work advances both the health and wealth of the 

The original settlers of Carolina had no thought that in less 
than a century Oyster-Point would become a place of com- 
mercial importance, and the capital of an independent State 
stretching from the ocean to the mountains. Had they antic- 
ipated half of what has already taken place, ten feet alleys, 
and streets thirty-three feet wide, would have made no part of 
their projected seat of government. It would then have been 
nearly as easy to have made the streets one hundred feet wide 
as any inferior number. In that case they would have ad- 
mitted three rows of trees, one at each side, and one in the 
middle of every street. It would have been easy to have 
made no lots of less size than half an acre, and by law to 
have prevented their subdivision. In addition to the incon- 
veniences of a low and moist situation, too many people in 
Charlestown, in consequence of its niggardly plan, are crowded 
on too small a space of ground. Close compact cities are the 
destroyers of the human race. Every family generates a 
portion of filth, and when they are near to each other, that 
becomes too great for the health of the citizens. Numbers are 
every year sacrificed to the avarice of the proprietors of lots. 
The evils of a crowded population are increased by high and 
close fences, which are daily increasing, and still more by 
building houses in contact with each other and without any 
interstice between. The daily removal of putrescible sub- 
stances lessens the evils of an impure air, but is inadequate 
to the purpose intended. The only efi'ectual remedy is fresh 
running water. This unites cleanliness with coolness. It re- 
moves noxious vapors, cools the atmosphere and increases its 
salubrity by extricating fresh and wholesome air from its 
own substance. The next best practicable mitigator of heat 
and corrector of foul air in Charlestown is trees planted in all 
the streets which can admit them. They are the coolers 
given to us by nature. In addition to their refreshing shade, 
they imbibe the poisonous materials which vitiate the air. 
They fan the earth by the vibratory motion of their leaves. 
Instead of obstructing the free circulation of the air, they in- 
crease a light breeze by creating an under current on the sur- 
face of the earth, where it is wanted. Cities built with marble, 
if destitute of trees and vegetation, would only afford a miser- 
able residence to splendidly wretched inhabitants. 

Much of the sickness in the country arises from an inju- 
dicious choice of sites for habitation. Health or disease, long 
life or premature death, hang very much on the choice of a 
salubrious situation for a house. This should never be on the 
side of a marsh or within a mile of it ; but if this cannot be 


avoided, the dwelling should be placed to the windward, 
which in this State is the south and west; for the unwhole- 
some winds of summer mostly blow from these points. If 
circumstances make it necessary to live near to or on the 
north or east side of unwholsome spots, the evil may be 
mitigated by preserving or planting trees in the intermediate 

South Carolina since the revolution has been favored with 
the privilege, seldom enjoyed by any State, of forming a city 
on medical and philosophical principles for health and com- 
fort Avithout any influence from mercantile convenience or 
land jobbing avarice. The extension of settlements far to the 
west loudly demanded on republican principles a removal of 
the seat of government from the vicinity of the Atlantic ocean. 
The general principle being resolved upon, no private views 
could control the sovereign people from establishing their gov- 
ernment where they pleased ; and wherever they fixed it a 
town would of course be speedily formed. A high and com- 
manding situation about one hundred and twenty miles from 
Charlestown, and about three miles from the junction of Broad 
and Saluda rivers, commonly known by the name of the 
plane of Taylor's hill, was selected. In many respects this 
choice was judicious: perhaps a much better could not have 
been made to the east of the mountains. There was a suffi- 
cient elevation to carry off with management all superfluous 
water. Some of the defects in the original plan of Charles- 
town were obviated. No lots were to be less than half an 
acre. The two main streets crossing each other at right 
angles were to be each 150 feet wide, and none were to be 
less than sixty. It was unfortunately, but perhaps unavoid- 
ably placed on the north and east side of the neighboring 
rivers and no more than about three miles distant. It is to be 
regretted that the lots were not by the original terms of sale 
made indivisible, and their owners restrained from building 
more than one dwelling house on each — that the plat of the 
town was not so constituted as to have preserved all the timber 
between the town and the rivers as a defence against the 
south west winds, impregnated with the miasmata with which 
they are usually charged, and that all possibility of erecting 
mill dams or keeping up ponds of stagnant water was not le- 
gally or constitutionally forbidden. These regulations could 
with ease and propriety have been adopted at first, but cannot 
now be carried into effect without violating private rights. The 
place is sufficiently high to have in it no other than running 
water; and the streets are wide enough to admit without in- 
convenience, three rows of trees to be planted in each of them. 
These advantages, with the surrounding woods and vegeta- 

PEOM 1670 TO 1808. 59 

tion, especially when drained of every drop of stagnant water, 
may keep the town healthy till the rising value of its lots 
paves the way for the destruction of pure air by a crowded 
population. This is to be apprehended, for the degree of heat 
therein is greater than in Charlestown, and is unallayed by 
salutary sea breezes; the refrigerating qualities of the trade 
winds; the ventilation from the motion of tide, water, and 
even of the east and northeast winds which seldom penetrate 
so far from the shores of the Atlantic as sensibly to moderate 
the heat of summer. The natural advantages of Columbia 
and its scattered settlements, together with the improved plan 
of the town, bid fair, under the direction of a well regulated 
police, to preserve it healthy for several years ; but from its 
greater heat it will be more exposed to diseases than Charles- 
town when population, compact settlement and consequent 
filth shall be equal in both. 

A medical society for the advancement of the heahng art 
was formed in 1789, and incorporated in 1794. At their 
monthly meetings they converse on the prevailing diseases; 
examine and record their meteorological observations, and dis- 
cuss some medical question or subject. The members are by 
their rules under obligations to furnish in rotation some origi- 
nal medical paper which, after circulating among the members, 
is made the subject of conversation and discussion at their 
next meeting. Of these papers, a few have already been i)ub- 
lished. Others remain sufficient both in number and import- 
ance to make a volume which probably will in time be brought 
forward to public view. In all cases respecting the medical 
police of Charlestown application has been made to this society 
for their advice, and it has been cheerfully given and essen- 
tially contributed to form beneficial regulations for preserving 
the health of the inhabitants. Three institutions emanated 
from the medical society of great public utility: the Humane 
society — the Charlestown dispensary, and the Botanic garden. 
An apparatus for the recovery of persons suffering under sus- 
pended animation was purchased by the society, and lodged 
near the most frequented wharves with directions how to treat 
the sufferers. The members tendered their medical services 
when called upon. They also applied to the City Council for 
their aid, who directed that all articles used, and all assistance 
rendered should, if required, be paid by the city; and that any 
retailer of spirituous liquors who refused the use of his house 
for trying the process of resuscitation should receive no new 
license for carrying on his business. The second institution, 
or the Dispensary, was instituted for the medical relief of the 
poor in their own houses. Most of the physicians and sur- 
geons of the society in rotation gratuitously attend and pre- 


scribe for the dispensary patients. These are admitted to the 
benefit of the institution by tickets from trustees. The City 
Council appoints the trustees and also the dispensary apoth- 
ecary. To the latter an annual salary is paid from the city 
treasury for his medicines and services. Thus medical advice 
and attendance can be obtained at their own habitations gra- 
tuitously by all the indigent inhabitants who apply for it; and 
the whole expense has hitherto cost the city no more than 1,000 
dollars per annum. The young physicians, when admitted 
members of the medical society, are classed into pairs; and 
in monthly rotation with the elder members, prescribe for and 
attend on the dispensary patients. In cases of difficulty, pro- 
vision is made for consultations with some of the elder physi- 
cians appointed for that purpose by the medical society. In 
addition to the manifold advantages derived to the more indi- 
gent inhabitants from this institution, it proves an excellent 
practical school for the younger physicians, and furnishes a 
conspicuous opportunity for introducing their industry, talents, 
and acquirements to public observation. 

The Botanic society was formed and incorporated in the 
year 1805. The Medical society gave to it three hundred dol- 
lars, fifty dollars per annum, and a large lot of land which had 
been generously given to them by Mrs. Savage, now Mrs. Tur- 
pin, to be used as a Botanic garden. The inhabitants were 
invited to join the association, and oia their annual payment 
of any sum between four to ten dollars, at their option, they 
were entitled to privileges in proportion to their respective 
subscriptions, and became members of the Botanic society. 
An annual sum of 1,176 dollars thus obtained from voluntary 
subscribers, has given activity to the project. The garden was 
opened in the year 1805, and has been superintended ever 
since by a committee,chosen partly by the medical society and 
partly by the other members of the Botanic society. This 
committee keep in constant employ an experienced practical 
Botanist, and a few laborers under him. The institution has 
flourished beyond the most sanguine expectations of its friends. 
It is now enriched with a considerable number of plants, both 
indigenoits and exotic, arranged according to the Linnean sys- 
tem, and additions are constantly making to it by the citizens 
and from foreign countries. From the proceeds of a lottery 
now pending, hopes are entertained that the society will be 
enabled to enlarge their plan so as to make their garden the 
repository of every thing useful, new, and curious in the vege- 
table world. A society of practitioners of physic from several 
surrounding districts has been lately formed, which now hold 
their meetings in Union district, under the name of Escula- 
pean society of South Carolina. The duties and exercises 

PROM 1670 TO 1808. 61 

imposed by this society are similar to those imposed by the 
JVledical society of South Carolina. Their funds are intended 
for the purchase of a Medical library. 

For eighty or ninety years after the first settlement of South 
Carolina, the practice of physic was almost entirel}^ in the 
hands of Europeans. Among these were several able phy- 
sicians who possessed an accurate knowledge of the diseases 
of the country. 

The 18th century was more than half elapsed before the 
Carolinians seriously undertook to educate their sons for the 
practice of physic, or before any native of America had estab- 
lished himself in Soixth Carolina as a practitioner of medicine. 
About the year 1760 a few youths were put under the care of 
respectable physicians in Charlestown who, afier spending five 
or six years in their shops, doing the duties of apprentices, 
and reading practical medical books, spent three or four sea- 
sons at the university of Edinburgh and then came home in- 
vested with the merited degrees of Doctors of Medicine. They 
were well received by their coimtrymen, and readily established 
themselves in business. This success encouraged others to 
follow their example and ever since a medical education has 
been, more common. Anterior to the revolution nothing short 
of an European education was deemed suificient to attach the 
confidence of the public to any medical practitioner; but the 
growing reputation of the university of Pennsylvania resulting 
from the splendid talents of its Professors, and the solid attain- 
ments of its graduates, has done away this impression. The 
conveniency of attending medical lectures in a neighborhood 
city for some time past, and at present, draws three in four of 
the Charlestown medical students to Philadelphia in prefer- 
ence to Edinburgh at the distance of 3,000 miles and in a 
climate often too cold for young Carolinians. The study of 
medicine becomes daily more fashionable, and the first people 
in the State now educate their sons for physicians. 

In addition to the regular practice of medicine, there is much 
that may be called domestic. The distance of physicians, the 
expense, difficulty, and delay in procuring their attendance, 
has compelled many inhabitants of the country to prescribe 
for their families and sometimes for their neighbors. Wesley's 
primitive physic, Tissot, Buchan, Ricketson, Ewell, or some 
plain practical author is to be found in almost all their houses. 
f: With the aid of some family medicines, and of some well 
known vegetable productions, under the guidance of expe- 
rience they prescribe for the sick and often succeed beyond 

In cases of surgery they are more at a loss ; but even here by 
the aid of common sense and from the pressure of necessity 


aiding invention, they sometimes perform wonders. The 
author of this work in the year 1779, examined the stump of 
a man living near Orangeburg whose leg, after being horribly 
mangled, had been successfully amputated several years be- 
fore by one of his neighbors with a common knife, carpenter's 
handsaw, and tongs. The last instrument was applied red 
hot to staunch the bleeding. The stump was far from elegant, 
but with the help of a wooden leg the patient enjoyed all the 
advantages which are secured by the most dexterous perform- 
ance of amputation. There was no sergeon within sixty miles 
of the sufferer. 

Capital planters have their sick house or hospital — their 
medicine chest — their tooth drawer and bleeder — and often 
their midwife for family use. The negroes are the chief ob- 
jects of these establishments. From the simplicity of their 
disorders, resulting from their plain aliment and modes of life, 
the benevolent intentions of their owners are often carried 
into full effect. The pride of science is sometimes humbled 
on seeing and hearing the many cures that are wrought by 
these pupils of experience, who, without theory or system, by 
observation and practice acquire a dexterity in curing comrnoa 

In the infancy of Carolina, when European physicians mo- 
nopolized the practice of physic, there were more experiments 
made, more observations recorded, and more medical writings 
ushered into public view by the physicians of Charlestown, 
than of any other part of the American continent Dr. John 
Lining communicated to the Royal Society meteorological 
observations on the weather of Charlestown for the year 1738, 
1739, 1740, and 1742, which were the first ever published. 
He also favored the public with a series of judicious statistical 
experiments, perseveringly conducted through the whole of the 
year 1740.* 

Dr. Lining was one of the first experimenters in the novel 
subject of electricity, on which he corresponded with Dr. 
Franklin, soon after the discoveries of that celebrated man had 
astonished the philosophers of both the old and new hemis- 
phere. He also, in the year 1753, published an accurate his- 
tory of the yellow fever, which was the first that had been 
given to the public from the American continent 

Dr. Lionel Chalmers made and recorded observations on 

*From these it appeared that in the course of one year he had taken in nour- 
ishment and drink 42,443 ounces; that in the same time he had discharpred byper- 
spiration 19,721 ounces — by urine 21,276 ounces — and by stool 1,428 ounces ; and 
that the weight of his body increased in March, October, November, December, 
and January ; and diminished in April, May, June, July, August, September, and 
February, and that the diminution was greatest in September, being then 102 

FROM 1670 TO 1808, 63 

the weather for ten successive years, that is from 1750 to 1760. 
The same able physician furnished a particular account of 
the opisthotonos and tetanus, which was communicated to the 
Medical Society in London, in the year 1754, and afterwards 
published in the first volume of their transactions. He also 
prepared for the press an account of the weather and diseases 
of South Carohna, which was published in London in 1776; 
but his most valuable work was an essay on fevers, printed 
in Charlestown in the year 1767. In this he unfolded the 
outlines of the modern spasmodic theory of fevers. Hoffman 
had before glanced at the same principles ; but their complete 
illustration was reserved for Cullen, and laid the foundation 
of his fame. 

Doctor Garden, about the year 1764, gave to the public an 
account of the virtues of pink root and at the same time gave 
a botanical description of the plant. This truly scientific phy- 
sician was much devoted to the study of natural history, and 
particularly of botany, and made sundry communications* on 
those subjects to his philosophical friends in Europe. 

In compliment to him, the greatest botanist of the age gave 
the name of Gardenia to one of the most beautiful flowering 
shrubs in the world. 

William Bull was the first native of South Carolina who 
obtained a degree in medicine. He had been apupilof Boer- 
haave, and in the year 1734 defended a thesis "De Colica Pic- 
tonum" before the University of Leyden. He is quoted by 
Van Swieten as his fellow-student, with the title of the learned 
Dr. Bull. 

John Moultrie was the first Carolinian who obtained the 
degree of Doctor of Medicine, from the University of Edin- 
burgh, where, in the year 1749, he defended a thesis "De Febre 
Flava." Between the years 1768 and 1778 ten more natives 
obtained the same honor. These were Isaac Chanler, Peter 
Fayssoux, Thomas Caw, Charles Drayton, Tucker Harris, Rob- 
ert Peronneau, James Air, George Logan, Zachariah Neuf- 
ville, and Robert Pringle. 

Since the revolutionary war the number of native students 
has very much increased. Among them are several young 
men of great hopes. It is no inconsiderable evidence of the 

*0f these the following have been published in the transactions of the Royal 
Society: the HcUesia, first described by Dr. Garden, as appears by the letter of T. 
Ellis, Esq., F. K. S., read before the Royal Society, November 20th, 1760. An ac- 
count of the male and female cochineal insects, in a letter to John Ellis, Esq., read 
before the Royal Society, December 23, 1762. An account of an amphrl)ious bipes, 
(the mud inguana, or syren of South Carolina,) communicated in a letter to John 
Ellis, Esq., read before the Royal Society. An account of tvpo nevp tortoises com- 
municated in a letter to Thomas Pennant, Esq., and read before the Royal Society, 
May 2, 1771. An account of the gymnotus electricus in a letter to John Ellis, 
Esq., read before the Royal Society, February 23, 1775. 


increasing prosperity of South Carolina and the progress of 
medical knowledge therein, that within the last twenty-five 
years, or since the peace of 1783, many more natives of the 
State have graduated doctors of medicine than all the Caro- 
linians who had previously obtained that honor from the first 
settlement of the province. Among them are physicians and 
surgeons who are equal to the judicious treatment of every 
disease, and the dexterous performance of every operation in 

Three attempts have been made to regulate the admission 
of candidates for practicing the healing art in Carolina; but 
all failed. Clergymen and lawyers, before they are authorized 
to exercise their respective functions, are examined and li- 
censed by competent judges ; but the practice of physic is free 
to every man or woman who chooses to undertake it. 

A summary view of fashions, medical opinions, and prac- 
tices which have at different periods affected the health of the 
inhabitants and the practice of medicine in Carolina, shall 
close this chapter. The cocked hats which were common 
thirty years ago, exposed the wearers of them to the action of 
the sun much more than the round, flat, and deep crowned 
hats, which are now fashionable. The substitution of silk for 
varnished umbrellas has also been advantageous. The late 
increased general use of flannel next the skin, by adults, has 
defended them against the consequences of the sudden changes 
of the weather. Females, thirty or forty years ago, by the use 
of tight heavy whalebone stays injured their health, and some- 
times obstructed their regular growth. To this succeeded a 
moderate use of lighter stays which were advantageous to the 
shape without injury to the health. These gave place to a 
loose manner of dressing, which though unnecessary to 
health, destroyed the elegance of their form. Some, by the use 
of suspenders to their petticoats ran the risk of inducing can- 
cers, by an unequal and constant pressure on their bosoms. 
This mode of dressing, which obliterated all distinction be- 
tween the blooming slender virgin and the fruitful wife has 
been for some time changing in favor of lengthening waists 
and tighter bracing. The present danger is of their proceed- 
ing too far; for such practices, carried to excess, endanger the 
health of single women ; and in the case of married ladies, 
increase the pangs of parturition and lessen the probability of 
their terminating in the birth of living, well formed children. 
The great revolution in favor of the health of females, is the 
laying aside the old absurd custom of shutting them up from 
the commencement of pains, introductory to real labor, in 
close rooms from which air was excluded, and continu- 
ing them in this confined state, not only during the pangs of 

FROM 1670 TO 1S08. 65 

child-birth, but for many days after their termination. Un- 
reasonable prejudices against cool air were common thirty or 
forty years ago, and were acted upon to the injury and fre- 
quent deaths both of mothers and their infant offspring. The 
tight swaddling bands applied to the latter hastened the same 
event. A great reform has taken place; these mischievous 
practices have been laid aside. Cool air for several years has 
been freely admitted to the comfort of all parties in the cham- 
ber of confinement. The natural activity of infants, and the 
free expansion of their viscera, is no longer cramped by tight 
dresses. Most happy consequences have resulted — fewer wo- 
men are lost — more children survive, and larger families are 
now raised than was common forty years ago. 

The Carolinians are indebted to the late French emigrants 
for the more frequent use of baths, both hot and cold, and 
also of the bidet. Long experience in the West India Islands 
had taught them that such practices, and also