Wlliam Gilmore Simms
South-Carolina in the Revolutionary War >> South-Carolina in the Revolution >> Page 34

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Page 34

Reviews/Essays | Walker & James, Publishers | 1853
Transcription IV
horse, and an unequalled excellence in firearms. Exercise in
these is naturally the source of spirit and vigilance, of confi-
dence and courage in the field, which ordinary militia never
possess ; and of a peculiar capacity for guerilla or partisan
warfare, in which the South has especially been distinguished
whenever her troops have been led by native officers, who
knew how to appreciate and manage them, and who under-
stood the business themselves. But we must pass to another
of the fecund paragraphs of Mr. Sabine :
" South-Carolina, with a NORTHERN army to assist her,
could not or would not even preserve her own capital."
We have shown already that the word " Northern" must
not, as is too frequently the case in New England books, be
misunderstood to mean New-England. Their writers seem
determined to have it so, and charity requires that we should
suppose them always to believe what they themselves assert..
In every instance where the language is employed, we beg leave
to repeat that no troops from New England ever crossed the
State of Virginia. Let us look to the details. What, for
example, was this northern army that came to the help of
Charleston, when threatened by Clinton ? "The North-
Carolina and Virginia continentals, amounting to fifteen hun-
dred men, two frigates, a twenty-four gun ship, and a sloop
of war were ordered from the northward for the defence of
Charleston. This was all the aid that could be expected
from Congress." But these fifteen hundred troops were not
all available. " Out of a thousand North-Carolina militia,
commanded by General Lillington, whose term of service ex-
pired while the siege was pending, no more than three hun-
dred could be persuaded to remain within the lines."" Seven
hundred .continentals, (Virginians) commanded by General
Woodford, was the only reinforcement which the garrison