Easterwood Ford

We will start with Easterwood Ford. Go down the river past the old mill dam and where the old mill used to be. After about 2 miles  we come to a quiet, peaceful spot on the river called Easterwood Ford. It is shallow enough for wagons and horses to cross the river here. On the morning of January 16, 1781, this place was anything but quiet and peaceful. It was a scene of frantic activity. If you could have been here at daybreak you could have seen an amazing sight that had never been seen on the Pacolet River. An entire British army with all of its horses, men and wagons was crossing the river here. This army was commanded by Lt. Colonel Banastre Tarleton and he was doing his utmost to catch and destroy the American army commanded by General Daniel Morgan. They had marched all night in an effort to surprise Morgan. General Morgan was doing everything he could to flee from Tarleton and get away from him.

Just imagine, if you could have seen the spectacle of the army making its crossing. There were about 1100 heavily armed soldiers in bright colored uniforms and they had three or four hundred horses. In addition, there were 35 heavy wagons to carry supplies. It was not a pleasant experience. Remember that this was in the middle of January and the Pacolet River is “not suitable for wading” at that time of the year. After crossing the river, the foot soldiers had to continue their march with wet clothes and shoes. The cavalry were more fortunate as they could ride their horses across.

On the way to the crossing, the army had marched down what we know today as Jerusalem  Church Road. During the revolution this was known as the Grindal Shoals Road and led to the ford there. Several miles from Grindal Shoals, the British army took a small side road to the left. This was about where Sutton Road (S-42-808) intersects the Jerusaleum Church Road today. The road veered off to the right and followed basically what is today, Kirby Drive (S-42-363). This led down to the river and Easterwood Ford. The British had expert guides showing them the way. They had local men who were Tories and knew all of the roads and river crossings.

As the British crossed, American sentries watched them and reported their progress back to General Morgan. There were also American sentries posted up at Trough Shoals to be on the lookout for Tarleton crossing there. Once across the river, the army had to travel across the muddy river bottoms on the other side until they got to higher ground. Here, they entered what we know today as the Old Quarter Round Road and continued their march on the way to the Battle of Cowpens.

The Pacolet River - not at Easterwood Ford (Photo by Jim Cody)

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.