The Battle of Tydiman's Plantation

February 25, 1782 at ??, South Carolina

Facts about the Battle of Tydiman's Plantation

  • Armies - American Forces was commanded by Brig. Gen. Francis Marion and consisted of about 500 Soldiers. British Forces was commanded by Col. Benjamin Thompson and consisted of about 700 Soldiers.
  • Casualties - American casualties were estimated to be 4 killed, 1 wounded, and 6 captured. British casualties were unknown.
  • Outcome - The result of the battle was a British victory.

Battle Begins

The Battle of Tydiman's Plantation was also called Wambaw Creek Bridge or Strawberry Ferry.

After crossing the Wambaw Bridge, the Patriots gathered themselves at the nearby Tidyman's Plantation. When Brigadier General Francis Marion heard the news of the rout at Wambaw Bridge he and Colonel Hezekiah Maham left Jacksonborough and rode back to his brigade. He took Maham's state dragoons and they covered thirty miles to Tidyman's Plantation, while Maham continued on to his own plantation.

Colonel Benjamin Thompson allowed his Loyalist infantry to keep walking along the road with their stolen cattle, intentionally giving the appearance that this was a mere foraging party. Meanwhile, most of his men were heading towards Wambaw Bridge, knowing that Brig. Gen. Marion would learn of the previous day's rout and that he would arrive sooner or later.

Both sides were startled to see each other's cavalry, but Thompson quickly recovered and swung his mounted men into a field and formed a line of battle. Marion ordered Captain John Carraway Smith to charge them. As Captain Smith bore down on the enemy he was suddenly seized by panic and dashed into the woods on the right. His men followed, veering to avoid a pond in their path.

This threw the entire attack into disorder and the British charged. Smith's dragoons broke and fled, some attempting to swim across the Santee River, with British riflemen killing as many as they could. Lieutenant Jacob Smiser, of Colonel Peter Horry's cavalry, drowned trying to cross the river.

A half mile away, Marion rallied the confused horsemen, but Thompson did not follow. Marion's men lost most of their firearms and many of their horses. The enemy had killed 20 and captured another 12 Patriots. In addition, Thompson captured the officers' baggage, some horses, Marion's tent, and some canteens filled with rum.

After this battle, there were only sixty dragoons left, and Horry's dragoons were decimated. Due to this, Governor Matthew ordered the two reduced regiments to be combined with Maham in command of the new single regiment. Horry felt slighted and resigned. Marion consoled him by placing him in command of Georgetown. Greene dispatched Laurens and his Continentals to support Marion's forces.

Thompson's raid did allow the British to forage "at will" from the end of February until the beginning of April.

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