The American Revolution in South Carolina


Signers of the Declaration of Independence


Timeline of Key Events


 Forts in South Carolina

The Known Battles & Skirmishes

 The Patriots and Their Forces

The British Forces & Their Allies / Loyalists 

 Maps of Revolutionary War Battles in South Carolina

Key Roads & Rivers During the Revolution 

 South Carolina Districts During the Revolution

SC Government During the Revolution

South Carolina, like her sister colony to the north, saw the rise of partisan groups over the years before the outbreak of fighting with Britain. The "Tories" or Loyalists were the conservative force, grateful for the protection afforded their commercial interests by the British navy. "Whigs," the Patriot element, included leading merchants, were energized in opposition to the British policies put forth in the Stamp Act, Townshend Act, and the Boston Port Bill.

Well over 400 land engagements (battles and skirmishes) took place in South Carolina during the war for independence. The first major battle centered around British efforts to seize Charlestown in June of 1776, when the Patriots held off the combined land and sea forces at the battle of Fort Moultrie and associated Breech Inlet Naval Battle. A second British assault failed in 1779, but a third attempt on Charlestown in the Spring of 1780 succeeded.

Patriot forces suffered another serious setback in the battle of Camden in August of 1780. Major General Horatio Gates’ night-time march failed to surprise the British. The Patriots suffered nearly 1,000 soldiers killed or wounded and about the same number captured. The resulting withdrawal left most of South Carolina in British hands.

The tide turned in the Patriots’ favor in the victories at Kings Mountain (October 7, 1780) and Cowpens (January 17, 1781). Later in 1781, Continental Army Major General Nathanael Greene commenced a drive that pushed the main British force out of South Carolina, through North Carolina, and into Virginia. Smaller British contingents remained behind and participated in the continuing struggle between the Patriot and Loyalist soldiers. 


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