Continental General Nathanael Greene
||Born: July 27, 1742; Potowomut (Warwick), Rhode Island
Died: June 19, 1786; Savannah, Georgia
Battles: Trenton, Guilford Courthouse
The Southern Campaign: 1781
The high cost of the victory was another blow to Lt. General Charles Cornwallis' army, which had still not recovered from the aggresive march to the Dan River and his decision to burn the baggage train along the way in January. General Cornwallis was forced to withdraw further south. After nearly two months of little activity, Cornwallis gave up on the Carolinas and in May marched to Virginia and would eventually surrender to General George Washington at Yorktown, Virginia in October 1781.
Maj. General Nathanael Greene next returned to South Carolina and began the 'War of the Posts.' His forces simultaneously attacted several points in the exposed British line of forts. He led his main force against Lt. Colonel Lord Rawdon in the Battle of Hobkirk's Hill just outside of Camden, South Carolina on April 25, 1781. On May 10, 1781, Lord Rawdon abandoned Camden while Greene set the stage for the Siege of Ninety-Six (May 22-June 18). Just as the siege looked to be succeeding, Lord Rawdon arrived with a relief force and Greene retreated. Rawdon soon abandoned Ninety-Six.
Greene retreated into the Santee Hills during the heat of the summer to rest his troops for six weeks until August 22, 1781. At the Battle of Eutaw Springs, South Carolina on September 8, 1781, Greene again lost the field, but weakened his British opponent so much that they withdrew to Monck's Corner, South Carolina.. In twenty months, Greene had succeeded in capturing all the posts, taking 3500 prisoners and splitting the British Army in half, cornered in Charleston, South Carolina and Savannah, Georgia after Wilmington, North Carolina was evacuated by the British in November 1781. Greene himself remained in Charleston, South Carolina until August 1783.
After the Revolutionary War (1781-1786)
After the war, Greene returned to Rhode Island. He was given a triumphal welcome, but he was now in serious financial difficulty because he had pledged much of his personal fortune to back a contractor who had then gone bankrupt. He spent two years ironing out his problems. In 1785, he moved his family north of Savannah, Georgia to his new estate, Mulberry Grove. It had been given to him by the people of Georgia after he had been forced to liquidate his own estate in the North in order to pay debts. He attempted to settle down in the life of a Southern planter, but died of a stroke on June 19, 1786.
2. Boatner, Michael; Encyclopedia of the American Revolution
3. Buchanan, John; The Road to Guilford Courthouse
Topic Last Updated: 11/21/2002
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