Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Welcome To Cowpens, Now Surrender...!

Many times in the past, the Redcoats mistakenly underestimated the American patriots!

Very often the small numbers of American fighters turned what seemed to be a hindrance into a very successful fighting force! Some lessons are best learned the hard way, I guess! This was one of them for the Redcoats!

Jan 17, 1781:
Battle of Cowpens, South Carolina

Relying upon strategic creativity, Brigadier General Daniel Morgan and a mixed Patriot force rout British Lieutenant Colonel Banastre Tarleton and a group of Redcoats and Loyalists at the Battle of Cowpens on this day in 1781.

Commander in chief of the Southern Army, Major General Nathaniel Greene had decided to divide Patriot forces in the Carolinas in order to force the larger British contingent under General Charles Cornwallis to fight them on multiple fronts—and because smaller groups of men were easier for the beleaguered Patriots to feed. Daniel Morgan took 300 Continental riflemen and 740 militiamen with the intention of attacking the British backcountry fort, Ninety-Six.

In response, Cornwallis dispatched Tarleton with 1,100 Redcoats and Loyalists to catch Morgan, whom he feared might instigate a broad-based backcountry Patriot uprising. Morgan prepared for the encounter with Tarleton by backing his men up to a river at Cowpens, north of Ninety-Six.

As Tarleton's men attacked, Morgan instructed the militia to skirmish with them, but to leave the front line after firing two rounds. The British mistook the repositioning of the Americans as a rout and ran into an unexpected volley of concentrated rifle fire coupled with a cavalry charge and followed by the return of the militia. Tarleton escaped, but Morgan's troops decimated his army.

American rifles, scorned by Britain's professional soldiers, proved devastatingly effective in this engagement. The British lost 110 men and more than 200 more were wounded, while an additional 500 were captured. The American losses totaled only 12 killed and 60 wounded in the first Patriot victory to demonstrate that the American forces could outfight a similar British force without any other factors—such as surprise or geography—to assist them.

Country folks, squirrel guns, and a blessed determination to be free! Folks, that's a combination that's just plain hard to beat! Just ask the British!

Coffee on the patio again this morning. Trying to be Summer early!


Gorges Smythe said...

We don't have enough country folk OR squirrel guns anymore!

Spud said...

I'll take 10 country folk, against 100 city folk anytime. Cuz we gots squirrel guns and bear guns too...

Ben in Texas said...

NOW that battle site I've been to the monument . I had family here in Carolina before it was the US! or N & S Carolina. One of my ancestors opened his plantation house to the troops during that era.

linda m said...

I agree with Spud, us country folk have the guns and we know how to use them. Hopefully we won't have to resort to that kind of warfare ever again. But if we do I am ready. Look out - "crazy woman with a gun"!

Sixbears said...

Don't mess with people who shoot from the time they can lift a rifle.

JOJO said...

Great Post,
Another bit of history I didn't know. Thank you.

I am still having blogger problems. I thought it was fixed but now its worse. But at least I can still reach you. :)

sel said...

I know there are PLENTY of squirrel guns around here!! They arent on display anymore.

Dizzy-Dick said...

I spent most of my youth in the woods hunting or fishing. Like the song goes, "we country folk can survive".

HermitJim said...

Hey Gorges...
There does seem to be a dwindling number of both anymore. Sad, but true!

I can remember when I was a kid, nearly every home had at least one squirrel gun.

Hey, thanks for coming by today!

Hey Spud...
I'll have to agree with ya there! Folks that know how to make use of the right tools make good partners!

Thanks for coming by today, buddy!

Hey Ben...
Good for your relative, opening up his home for the troops!

Always nice to find out about our relatives and what they did!

Thanks, buddy, for coming by today!

Hey Linda...
Wow! You go, girl! I couldn't agree more with what you said!

Thanks so much for dropping by today!

Hey Sixbears...
You make a very good point, my friend! Some things are best left alone!

Challenging someone on their home ground is never a good idea!

Thanks for coming over this morning!

Hey JoJo...
I am so sorry that you are having trouble with blogger. Mine is working just fine!

You know I'm always willing to share what I learn with you!

You have a great day, and thanks for dropping in today!

Hey Sel...
I reckon folks are keeping them closer than they used to!

Just 'cause they aren't on display, doesn't mean they are not close at hand !

I sure appreciate the visit this morning!

Hey Dizzy...
Some childhood skills just stay with us forever!

That, in my opinion, is a good thing!

Thank you, my friend, for coming over this morning!