Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Cane Creek: Prelude to Kings Mountain

From Biographical History of North Carolina, by Samuel A'Court Ashe, published 1908, C.L. Van Noppen, North Carolina, pg. 302:

    On August 29th [1780] Cornwallis wrote to Sir Henry Clinton that Ferguson was to move into Tryon, now Lincoln County, with what the latter thought was a reliable body of militia. Ferguson accordingly advanced to Gilbert-town, three miles north of the present village of Rutherfordton, where he issued a proclamation to the citizens to renew their allegiance and join the king's army. Learning that McDowell had retired, and that the Watauga leaders had crossed the mountains to their homes, Ferguson began to send out parties of foragers to ravage the county of Burke. This aroused Colonel Charles McDowell, and learning that he was again mustering his men, Ferguson sent out a detachment in search of him. But he again failed to surprise McDowell, who was lying in ambuscade for him at Bedford Hill, three miles southwest of Brindletown and near Cowan's Ford of Cane Creek. On the [12 September 1780, per Lt. Anthony Allaire’s diary] approach of Ferguson's men, McDowell's men fired upon them, killing many of the Tories and wounding Major Dunlap, the trusted lieutenant of Ferguson. Ferguson was forced to retire hastily to Gilbert-town.