The Battle of Camden: A Documentary History
History and Philosophy
On the foggy morning of August 16, 1780, American and British armies clashed in the pine woods north of Camden, South Carolina, in one of the most important and influential battles of the Revolutionary War. An American victory would quash British plans to subjugate the southern colonies and virtually guarantee the independence of the fledgling United States. A victory for the British would pave the way for the conquest of North Carolina and Virginia.
After nearly an hour of frenzied, bloody combat, the British army emerged victorious, and American morale plummeted to its lowest point of the war. The rout at Camden was not a total loss, however, as Patriot forces eventually came away with a renewed determination to resist British advances, and the lessons from the defeat were applied to secure future victories that finally allowed the Patriots to triumph in the South.
This engaging new book presents the Battle of Camden as never before: through the eyes and words of American and British participants and contemporary observers. The events leading up to the conflict, the combat itself and the consequences of Camden are all described in striking detail. The cunning strategies of both American Major General Horatio Gates and British Lieutenant General Lord Cornwallis are revealed, as are a number of battlefield reports from soldiers on both sides. In addition to these compelling first-hand accounts, The Battle of Camden includes analysis of the battle and its effects in America and Europe from George Washington, Thomas Jefferson and Lord George Germain. With this landmark text, author and historian Jim Piecuch offers a comprehensive consideration of a vital Revolutionary battle and its effects on the war for American independence.