Wlliam Gilmore Simms
The History of South Carolina, From Its First European Discovery to Its Erection into a Republic >> Chapter XVIII >> Page 195

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Page 195

History | S. Babcock & Co. | 1840
Wallis for the safety of the post at Ninety Six; and he
ordered Tarleton to throw himself at once across the path
of Morgan.
With a force of twelve hundred men five hundred of
whom were the formidable legion which had been car-
rying terror and conquest through every quarter of the
state, for so long a time�Tarleton prepared to obey with
his accustomed celerity. That there should be no
chance for the escape of his prey, who lay on the west
side of Broad river, it was concerted that Cornwallis
should advance northwardly as far as King's mountain,
that Morgan's retreat might be cut off, and he com-
pelled to fight. That Morgan should himself desire to
encounter either of them, the British commanders do
not seem to have suspected for a moment. Instead of
flying from Tarleton, Morgan advanced to the Pacolet to
meet him. The Pacolet is a small river, fordable in
many places. On the evening of the 15th, Tarleton put
his troops in motion towards the head of the stream, as
if with an intention to cross it above the position which
Morgan had taken, and thus place his adversary between
his own and the main army under Cornwallis, which
was only a day's march distant on the left. His stratagem
took effect. Morgan made a corresponding movement,
while Tarleton, silently decamping in the night, passed
the river before daylight, at a crossing place a few miles
below. Morgan then retreated precipitately, and before
night regained a favorite position on Thicketty creek,
where he determined to await the approach of the enemy.
Tarleton, supposing that his adversary was resolved on
flight, hurriedly resumed the pursuit on the following