Wlliam Gilmore Simms
South-Carolina in the Revolutionary War >> III. >> Page 74

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Reviews/Essays | Walker & James, Publishers | 1853
driven him back from her territory. But in the fall of Geor-
gia, by which South-Carolina became a frontier,—and in her
feeble but frequent attempts to succour and to save her still
feebler sister,—we have shown how she crippled her own
strength, and impaired those resources upon which, in the
day of her danger, her only reliance could be placed. The
assault upon Savannah, by the combined troops of Lincoln
and D'Estaing, in which the Carolina troops were the most
successful and the most to suffer ; and the unfortunate sur-
prise, by which the brigade of General Ashe was cut to
pieces, left her with a native force quite too inadequate for
the encounter with that powerful array, with which, on the
third occasion, the British generals prepared themselves for
the work of conquest. With diminished squadrons, with
disease of an infectious character prevailing within her chief
city, with a valueless currency, and deeply in debt, South-
Carolina was less capable of resisting the assault at this junc-
ture, than upon any previous occasion. Her resources had
been exhausted by nearly four years of conflict. Her frontier
lay open to the tory and the savage, already active under the
influence of British gold ; her ports were accessible, without
obstruction, from the sea, in every but a single quarter.
Georgia, overrun by the enemy, and completely in his power,
was a sufficient point d'appui for the British operations against
her ; while her proximity to the British West India Islands
rendered it easy to accumulate, with great rapidity, upon her
coasts, their most powerful armaments. Her wealth was a
lure to the cupidity of the enemy ; while the foreign popula-
tion within her limits—a very numerous proportion of her
people—furnished an ally to the assailants, within her walls,
which suggested an ever-present necessity to watch and fear.
There were special reasons why the British should concentrate
all their powers for her overthrow. Twice had they been