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Thursday, March 10, 2016

The Patriots Daily Bites of American History Series 23 :Greene’s Campaign in South Carolina

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The Patriots Daily Bites of American History Series # 23
 by Gregory Dixon...US History 1956 


Greene’s Campaign in South Carolina:

British General Cornwallis had started on his long march of 200 miles, Meanwhile Greene, aided by marion, Sumter and Pickens, had driven the British from Camden May 10,1781. Through the summer they struck the enemy blow after blow and ended with a battle which was practically a victory at Eslaw Springs, south Carolina on September 8,1781.

After that the British fled to Charleston and shut themselves up there and did not venture out. Greene had, in fact, won back the Carolinas thanks to the help of Sumter, Marion and Pickens with an army of less than two thousand men. Cornwallis reached Virginia and after vainly pursuing Lafayette and destroying millions of dollars worth of property he entered Yorktown Peninsula at the mouth of the York River. Cornwallis moved to Yorktown July 30,1781 to get help by sea from New York.

There the British General Cornwallis fortified himself and built his own prison which he would never escape without surrendering. While he was waiting for British soldiers to arrive from New York a French fleet of warships under Count DeGrasse came to block him in. This was Washington’s chance to strike a tremendous blow. His plan was, to march rapidly south from Hudson to Yorktown and with the help of the French fleet and with Lafayette and his army, to capture Cornwallis with his whole force.

Such a move required a large amount of money for provisions, pay and gunpowder. Robert Morris came tom the rescue and is said to have furnished nearly a million and a half dollars for the good work. Clinton at the head of the British force in New York, thought Washington was getting ready to attack him. Washington encouraged him to think so. He went on making every possible preparation for moving against New York. Even Washington’s own army supposed that was his intention.

Washington suddenly broke camp and marched his entire force with all possible speed across the country to the head of the Chesapeake Bay and then by vessels to Yorktown. Cornwallis looked over the walls of his fortified town. He saw the French fleet on one side and the American and the French Army 16,000 strong on the other side. He held out for more than a week against solid shot shells and red hot cannon balls. 

Then seeing it was useless to struggle against the Providence of God he surrendered. His army marched out October 19,1781 to the tune of “The World turned upside down.” It was an appropriate song as the British world in America was upside down. The fall of Yorktown practically ended the war of the Revolution. Washington had conquered. It was the victory of a great man for a good cause. The Revolution from its first outbreak at Lexington on April 19.1775 to the virtual disbanding, April 19,1783, lasted exactly 8 years to the very day. 
(to be continued)
King George meets with John Adams to discuss a treaty of peace. 


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