The Battle of Tydiman's Plantation

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The Battle of Tydiman's Plantation

February 25, 1782 at ??, South Carolina
(aka Wambaw Creek Bridge or Strawberry Ferry)

AMERICAN FORCES
Commanded by: Brig. Gen. Francis Marion
Strength: 500
Casualties: 4 killed, 1 wounded, 6 captured
BRITISH FORCES
Commanded by: Col. Benjamin Thompson
Strength: 700
Casualties: ?
CONCLUSION
Conclusion: British Victory

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

Col. 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 Col. Thompson quickly recovered and swung his mounted men into a field and formed a line of battle. Brig. Gen. Marion ordered Capt. John Carraway Smith to charge them. As Capt. 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. Capt. Smith's dragoons broke and fled, some attempting to swim across the Santee River, with British riflemen killing as many as they could. Lt. Jacob Smiser of Col. Horry's cavalry drowned trying to cross the river.

A half mile away, Brig. Gen. Marion rallied the confused horsemen, but Col. Thompson did not follow. Marion's men lost most of their firearms and many of their horses. The enemy had killed twenty and captured another twelve Patriots. In addition, Col. 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 Col. Horry's dragoons were decimated. Due to this, Governor Matthew ordered the two reduced regiments to be combined with Col. Hezekiah Maham in command of the new single regiment. Col. Peter Horry felt slighted and resigned. Brig. Gen. Marion consoled him by placing him in command of Georgetown.

Maj. Gen. Greene dispatched Lt. Col. John Laurens and his Continentals to support Brig. Marion's forces.

Col. Benjamin 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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