Wlliam Gilmore Simms
The History of South Carolina, From Its First European Discovery to Its Erection into a Republic >> Chapter XVI >> Page 166

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Page 166

History | S. Babcock & Co. | 1840
Transcription 166THE HISTORY OF SOUTH CAROLINA.
disgraced the British soldiery, exhausted the spirits and
resources of the country. The invasion of Prevost, record-
ed in a previous chapter, had been followed by scenes of
devastation, and acts of pillage, which would have shamed
a Tartar banditti. But these acts were ascribed to the
tories and Indians in his retinue. The invasion of
Charlestown was notorious from like causes ; but the loy-
alists and Indians were no longer obnoxious to the
charge. The royal troops were the robbers, and their
commanders openly shared in the proceeds of the plunder.
Thousands of slaves were shipped to a market in the
West Indies. Mercantile stores, gold and silver plate, in-
digo, the produce of the country, became equally convert-
ible to the purposes of these wholesale plunderers, with
whom nothing went amiss. They plundered by system,
forming a general stock, and designating commissaries
of captures. Spoil, collected in this way, was sold for
the benefit of the royal army ; and some idea of the quan-
tity brought to market, may be formed, from the fact, that
though prices must have been necessarily low in so small
a community, yet the division of a major-general was
more than four thousand guineas. Apart from what was
sold in Carolina, several vessels were sent abroad for a
market, laden with the rich spoils taken from the inhab-
itants.
The capital having surrendered, the next object of the
British was to secure the general submission of the state.
To this end, the victors marched with a large body of troops
over the Santee, towards the populous settlements of
North Carolina, and planted garrisons at prominent points
of the country, during their progress. Their advance