Mark Lackey: Ramsour’s Mill, part 2

Published 12:00 am Sunday, June 11, 2017

These series of articles is brought to you monthly by the Catawba Valley Chapter of the North Carolina Society of the Sons of the American Revolution and the welcome cooperation of your local newspaper to bring awareness of the service and sacrifices of our local Patriot Ancestors and of area events that occurred during their fight for freedom from 19 April 1775 through 3 September 1783.

This article is about Patriots who fought in the Battle of Ramsour’s Mill, which occurred on 20 June 1780 and is considered a turning point in the Southern Campaign against the British and Lieutenant General Lord Charles Cornwallis who later surrendered his forces 19 October 1781 bringing a close to the War. This is Part 2 of 2 parts.

In part one of this article we discussed particulars of the Battle of Ramsour’s Mill and how short and bitter sweet the battle was in favor of our Patriots against overwhelming odds being outnumbered three to one and overcoming those odds sending the Tories on the run. After the battle, family members from both sides of the conflict came to the battlefield to retrieve their loved ones, dead and wounded.

In the weeks after the battle many Loyalists had their property seized and some thrown in jail. James Karr, a Loyalist, but friend of Patriot General Griffith Rutherford who served together in the 1776 war against the Cherokee, made contact with Rutherford for reconciliation and help to regain his property and was rebuked by Rutherford and told he was not deserving of anything due to his past actions.

When I walk through the battleground these days I find the integrity of the battlefield severely compromised with three schools and a football field having been built on the grounds and years of artifact hunters scouring the area for relics and souvenirs have taken much of the context away from this hallowed plot of ground.

The Sons of the American Revolution – Catawba Valley Chapter, the National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution and the Lincoln County Historical Association work together to keep the memory alive with an annual celebration at the battlefield in June. This year the celebration starts on Friday, 9 June 2017 and will continue with graveside commemoration on Saturday, 10 June 2017. There are many more mini-events happening Friday, Saturday and Sunday with reenactments and history walks. The public is invited to attend and see living history and learn why this most important battle of the American Revolution has given their lives context that they never knew they had.

Come discover your history and heritage and share it with your friends. More information can be obtained by contacting NCSSAR Catawba Valley Chapter President Jack Bowman. 828-485-8838.

Mark Lackey authors this article. Mark is currently residing in Morganton and is President/CEO of the Alexander County Cemetery & Heritage Foundation, Inc. a local non-profit corporation and is the Registrar/Genealogist for the Catawba Valley Chapter of the Sons of the American Revolution. Mark can be reached at:


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