Wlliam Gilmore Simms
South-Carolina in the Revolutionary War >> III. >> Page 154

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Page 154

Reviews/Essays | Walker & James, Publishers | 1853
place. [Which did not come.] Lt. Col. Tarleton, without
any knowledge of the misfortune which had happened to the
detachment of light infantry cavalry, was proceeding, on the
same day, with a patrol of 150 dragoons, to gain intelligence
at Lenew's Ferry, of the force and motions of the enemy.
On the road, the British were overtaken by a loyal American,
who had been a witness to the success which had attended
Col. White in the morning, but had luckily escaped his power.
The description of the troops, the assurances of their intention
to pass the river at Lenew's, and the hope of retaking the
prisoners, stimulated Tarleton to push on his patrol with the
greatest expedition. At the same time, the distance of Lord
Cornwallis's camp, the fatigue of the march, the heat of the
weather, and the sight q f their infantry on the opposite bank,
threw the Americans quite off their guard. At 3 o'clock in
the afternoon, the advanced guard of the English arrived in
presence of their videttes. Tarleton, instantly forming his
troops, ordered them to charge the enemy's grand guard, and
to pursue them into the main body. The corps being totally
surprised, resistance and slaughter soon ceased. Five officers
and 36 men were killed and wounded ; 7 officers and 60 dra-
goons were taken prisoners ; and the whole party of the light
infantry were rescued, as the boat was pushing off, to convey
them to the opposite shore. All the horses, arms and accou-
trements of the Americans, were captured."" May 14th. This day passed disagreeably. * * * *
Ordered to attend for paroles at different times, when there
was always something to prevent their being filled. Officers
and men, of the continental line, ordered to parade at the
barracks, at 12 this day, to be reviewed by Gen. Leslie, or an
officer appointed by him. The above order postponed
* to-morrow morning." [Subaltern.]

14th May. We have seen with what determination the
North-Carolinians were to push forward four or six thousand
troops to South-Carolina. A letter of this date, from Richard
Nassau Stephens, dated at Bath, N. C., says: " I thank you
for the intelligence, although the news is disagreeable ; and
what, I think, makes it much more so, is the supineness of