Wlliam Gilmore Simms
The History of South Carolina, From Its First European Discovery to Its Erection into a Republic >> Chapter XIX >> Page 200

image of pageExplore Inside

Page 200

History | S. Babcock & Co. | 1840
Lion of the sword of sergeant major Perry. A bullet from
the pistol of colonel Tarleton, aimed at Washington,
brought the noble steed that bore him to the ground.
The fortunate approach of the Americans arrested the
farther attempts of the Briton upon their leader. The mo-
ment was lost and his flight was resumed. The dragoons
never fought well. They had repeatedly hacked to pieces
a fugitive or supplicating militia ; but neither at Black-
stock's, where they encountered Sumter, nor at Cowpens,
where they met with Washington, did they maintain the
high renown which they had acquired rather from good
fortune than desert. The star of Tarleton waned from
this moment. His operations grew limited in extent, and
small in importance. His defeat on this occasion, with
that of Ferguson at King's mountain, were the first links
in a grand chain of causes, which drew down ruin on the
British interest in South Carolina.
Success did not lull Morgan into security. Not more
than twenty-five miles from lord Cornwallis, he naturally
conjectured that his lordship would be in motion to cut
off his retreat, as soon as the intelligence should reach
him of the defeat of Tarleton. He halted no longer on
the field of battle than to refresh his men and secure his
prisoners, who were five hundred in number, exclusive of
the wounded; and moved across Broad river the same eve-
ning. His movements were necessarily slow, encum-
bered as he was with the wounded, the prisoners, and the
captured baggage ; and he might have been easily over-
taken and brought to a halt by a vigorous pursuit of the
enemy ; but the good fortune which had attended him
through the conflict, still clung to his standard. Cornwal-