Camps

There were several important and historic campsites within our circle. There were not battles at most of the places but they were critical in fighting the War. These were:

Grindal Shoals - This location on the Pacolet River is described in detail in other places on this website. In summary, General Morgan and his army camped here from Christmas Day, 1780 until he left on January 15, 1781 in an effort to run away from Tarleton.

Cedar Springs - The location of a fresh water spring in what is now the southeastern edge of the city of Spartanburg. During the colonial era it was well known to local settlers as a place to camp and get water for themselves and their livestock. In July 1780, members of the Spartan Regiment camped at Cedar Springs when the first battle of Cedar Springs occurred. Cedar Springs is about 8 miles from our bridge.

Camp on Thicketty Creek at Gentleman Thompson’s - This is in present day Cherokee County and was the home of “Gentleman” William Thompson and was located close to both the Georgia Road and the Green River Road. This site was near what is now known as Thicketty Station on the Southern Railroad and near the intersection of modern Highway 29 and the Green River Road. The exact location of the camp is in dispute till this day. Morgan and his army arrived here late in the afternoon of January 15 after marching all day from Grindal Shoals. They left early the next morning, January 16, when Morgan received word that Tarleton and his army had just crossed the Pacolet River at Easterwood, only 8 miles away. The men had already built fires and were cooking their breakfast. They abandoned the cooking food in the rush to get on the march and get away from Tarleton.

In the afternoon of the same day, January 16, the British army arrived at the same camp. They ate the food that the Americans had left on the fires. They camped on that spot the night of January 16. However, it was a short night. Tarleton had them on the march by 3 am the next morning - without breakfast. He believed that Morgan was trying to escape from him and he was desperate to catch and destroy Morgan and his army. The camp was about 7 miles from our bridge at Trough Shoals.

Hannah’s Cowpens - this was a well known site about 5 miles south of the present North Carolina - South Carolina state line in what is now Cherokee County. It first comes into our story more as a gathering spot and resting place than as a camp. On October 6, 1780, late in the afternoon, a group of Overmountain men and other North Carolina militia met more South Carolina militia at the Cowpens. This was the night before the Battle of Kings Mountain. Read the full details at Kings Mountain

General Morgan stopped his army here three months later on January 16, 1781 after marching all day from the camp at Gentleman Thompson’s. He had decided to make a stand here against Tarleton. He would let his men rest for the night and have an early breakfast the next morning before fighting the British. See the Battle of Cowpens for the full details of the fight. The Cowpens Battlefield is about 16 miles from our bridge.

British Army Camp at Turkey Creek - In early January, 1781, the British General Cornwallis had his main army camped at Winnsboro, South Carolina. He dispatched Tarleton and his troops to try to catch and destroy Morgan and his army.  While Tarleton was on the move, Cornwallis would move with the remainder of his army north up along the Broad River. He hoped to trap Morgan between Tarleton and his own army. He left Winnsboro on January 15, 1780. By the next day, January 16, he had gotten as far asTurkey Creek which empties into the Broad River. The camp was about 9 or 10 miles miles northeast of the present town of Lockhart and about 23 miles from our bridge at Trough Shoals. Instead of keeping on the move, Cornwallis stayed at the camp on Turkey Creek. He was still here when he got word that Tarleton’s army had been badly defeated at the Cowpens. Tarleton himself arrived at the camp the day after Cowpens to tell the bad news personally. Cornwallis led his army away from the camp at Turkey Creek on January 19, in what would prove to be a futile effort to destroy the American army.

Camps along Fairforest Creek - The area along the creek was used by both the Loyalists and the Patriots for camp locations. Ferguson and his Loyalist band also camped on Fairforest Creek. We have already seen that the Patriot militia under Brandon was camped on the creek, five miles below the present town of Union, when it was attacked and defeated by the Loyalists.



This web site has been started as a public service to share the story of Pacolet. The web master and person to contact about putting information on the web site is me, Gerald Teaster.  Contact me at:
gteaster@pacoletmemories.com or by telephone at (843) 873-8117.  My regular mail adress is:
1311 Jahnz Ave.
Summerville, SC 29485

See more information about my Pacolet connection at Gerald Teaster.