The forgotten Southerner in the American Revolution

Date: Mon, 14 May 2007

The Southern Story of the American Revolution has never been told…

Thousands of North Carolina, and Virginia Continental troops marched 600 miles North to fight the British. There is a very good chance that your Southern ancestors were present at battlefields like Monmouth, Germantown, Brandywine, Trenton, Princeton, Stony Point, Saratoga etc. We Southern boys are just never mentioned…

It was the Virginia troops that lead the attack on Trenton, NJ that snowy Christmas night?

At the battle of Germantown, PA the North Carolina Continentals were in the thick of fighting at the Chew house? They fought with distinction and captured 16 pieces of artillery from the British. Unsupported they had to abandon them. They lost their beloved General Nash and other officers in the battle, but saved the American army from a total rout. The Virginia Continentals were also in the thick of the fighting at the Chew house. The 1st, 5th, 8th, 9th and 13th VA regiments of Continentals cut a swath 1000 yards deep through the British lines. They finally found themselves surrounded and had to fight their way back out. The 9th VA regiment advanced so far that they were finally cut off and almost all captured. The other Virginia Regiments in Stephens brigade had also fought so far ahead into British lines that when they retreated, the Pennsylvania troops thought they were British troops and fired on them.

Did you know that the North Carolina Light infantry troops created the diversionary attack on Stony Point, NY and the Virginia troops led the attack?

Did you know that at the battle of Princeton, NJ the main troops were Virginia Continentals? Their commander General Hugh Mercer was killed because he refused to retreat. He died after being bayoneted 7 times. The Virginia troops saved the army from a total rout.

The VA troops were in the attack on the fort at Paulus Hooke, NJ along with Robert E. Lee’s father "Lighthorse Harry Lee"

General Daniel Morgan of Wincester, Va raised a special regiment of VA riflemen. The 11th Va regiment of Select riflemen fought all the way to Quebec, Canada and were crucial in the victory at Saratoga, NY. They destroyed the British Rangers and Indian Scouts that invaded from Canada.

The above battles all took place above the Mason-Dixon line.

The war in the South was fought almost entirely by Southerners.

One of the Bravest "Last stands" in American History was at the Battle of Briar Creek, Georgia. Colonel Samuel Elbert’s force of 80 Georgia Continentals and 150 Georgia Militia fought to the last man after being surrounded. About 1200 American Militia and Continental troops were rebuilding a bridge over Brier Creek next to the Savannah river. The British force around 2300 strong with 5 pieces of artillery and hundreds of cavaly attacked the startled American force from the rear. The North Carolina Militia managed to get off a few shots, but finally fled leaving the Georgia Continentals and Georgia Militia to stand alone against 2300 British troops. Colonel Elbert and the Georgians never left the field and even advanced his men toward the enemy. All Americans not just Georgians should take pride in Elbert’s bravery.

Here are some links to educate you on the facts.

Have a great day and Deo Vindice!

Jim Gillgam