Wlliam Gilmore Simms
The History of South Carolina, From Its First European Discovery to Its Erection into a Republic >> Chapter XXV >> Page 274

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Page 274

History | S. Babcock & Co. | 1840
Transcription energies of Greene, and the determined valor of the troops
under him, seemed resolved to hasten ; and in anticipation
of this event, the British commander, as if no longer
confident in his arms, was preparing to convert his
soldiers into mere marauders. In the short period which
followed the return of major Doyle with the British
army to the Eutaws, he had succeeded in plundering the
country on the Santee and Congaree, of every negro, and
of almost every thing else in the shape of property, that
could be carried away. But that Marion and Hampton
guarded the opposite banks of these rivers, their ravages
would have extended far beyond these comparatively
narrow limits.
The intelligence of the surrender of Yorktown, reached
the camp of Greene about the last of October. The day
was observed as a jubilee in camp, and the grateful
tidings gave a new impulse to the desire of the American
general to cross the rivers which separated him from his
enemy, and drive him down to the sea. This object had
now become one of infinite importance, in order that the
elections might be held as generally throughout the state,
as possible, for the legislature. The re-establishment of
the civil authority was of the last importance to the
country, as well as to the army. The former was with-
out laws, and had been exposed to a jurisdiction as
various and wild as the passions of the several and
conflicting parties by whom, at successive periods, it
had been held in possession. The latter was suffering
from every species of want.
"Our situation," says Greene, in a letter immediately
after the battle of Eutaw, is truly deplorable in the