By Carl P. Borick
In 1779, Sir Henry Clinton and greater than 8 thousand British troops left the waters of recent York to attempt a brand new tack within the warfare opposed to the yankee patriots - taking pictures the colonies' most crucial southern port. Clinton and his officials believed that the trap of Charleston, South Carolina, could swap either the seat of the conflict and its personality. The British have been right on either counts however the influence of the cost used to be defeat. during this entire learn of the 1780 siege and hand over of Charleston, Carl P. Borick deals a whole exam of the strategic and tactical components of Clinton's operations. Suggesting that students frequently have underestimated its significance, Borick contends that the siege used to be the most wide-ranging, refined, and demanding campaigns of the warfare. whereas awesome a devastating blow to American morale, it reworked the struggle in South Carolina from a traditional eighteenth-century clash right into a partisan battle. Borick examines the explanations for the shift in British approach, the efforts in their military and military to grab Charleston, and the problems the patriots confronted as they defended town. He analyzes the activities and judgements of key figures within the crusade together with Benjamin Lincoln, William Moultrie, Sir Henry Clinton, Lord Charles Cornwallis, and Banastre Tarleton. Borick additionally delves into the impact of the crusade on South Carolina civilians. He means that whereas British leaders had anticipated to discover multitudes of loyalist sympathizers within the south, the behavior of British squaddies and sailors there really served to arouse extra antipathy than allegiance. Drawing on letters, journals, and different files stored by means of American, British, and Hessian individuals, Borick depends upon a magnificent array of basic and secondary resources on the subject of the siege. He contains contemporaneous and glossy maps that depict the British method of the town and the complex army operations that resulted in the patriots' maximum defeat of the yank Revolution.
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Additional info for A Gallant Defense: The Siege of Charleston, 1780
Throughout the war, the Continental Congress called on militia from various states to respond 34 / A G A L L A N T D E F E N S E to British threats in neighboring states. New England militia were instrumental in the defeat of Burgoyne in New York in 1777, while North and South Carolina militia units ﬂocked to Georgia in reaction to the British presence there in 1778 and 1779. States also supported each other with provisions, weapons, and other military supplies, although these came more slowly and they did not have the immediate impact of an armed military force.
Upon reaching Charleston on 7 May, Moultrie found the town in chaos. ” Moultrie experienced this type of panic among Early Threats / 11 his own soldiers. Many resided in the area through which the British were marching and they left the ranks to tend to their families and property. Still, with approximately 3,000 troops in Charleston (many militia had ﬂocked to the city), Moultrie was conﬁdent that their numbers were sufﬁcient to make a stand, especially since the men were entrenched behind fortiﬁcations.
Clinton’s second in command, Lieutenant General Charles Earl Cornwallis, also came ashore. Even if the weather had not been stormy, the light infantry and grenadiers would have encountered no opposition, for there were no American forces on Simmons Island. ”37 On the morning of 12 February, the weather calmed enough for the rest of the troops to land. As they were coming ashore, the light infantry and grenadiers advanced across Simmons Island toward Johns Island. 39 In selecting Simmons Island, Clinton chose an isolated location distant enough from Charleston and the rebel army to ensure a secure landing, but such a place also meant that the troops had to traverse demanding terrain.