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sity obliges me to commit myself to chance, and if any accident should attend me, I trust my friends will do justice to my reputation."
The extensive line of posts maintained by Lord Rawdon, presented to Greene many objects, at which, it was probable he might strike with advantage. The day preceding his march from the camp on Deep river, he detached Lee to join General Marion, and communicated his intention of entering South Carolina to General Pickens with a request that he would assemble the western militia, and lay siege to Ninety Six, and Augusta.
Having made these arrangements, he moved from Deep river on the seventh of April, and encamped before Camden on the nineteenth of the same month, within half a mile of the British works. Lord Rawdon had received early notice of his approach, and was prepared for his reception.
Camden stands on a gentle elevation, and is covered on the south and south-west by the Wateree,* and on the east by Pine-tree creek. A strong chain of redoubts, extending from the river to the creek, protected the north and west sides of the town. Being unable to storm the works or to invest them on all sides, Greene contented himself with lying before the place in the hope of being reinforced by militia, or of some event which might bring on an action in the open field.
With this view he retired a small distance, and encamped on Hobkirk's hill, about a mile and a half from the town. While in this situation, he received information that Colonel Watson was marching up the Santee with about four hun. dred men. A junction between these two divisions of the British army, could be prevented only by intercepting Watson while at a distance from Camden. For this purpose, he crossed Sand-hill creek and encamped east of Camden, on the road leading to Charleston. It being impracticable to transport the artillery and baggage over the deep marshes adjoining the creek, Colonel Carrington with the North Carolina militia was directed to convey them to a place of safety, and to guard them till farther orders. The army continued a few days in its new encampment, during which the troops subsisted on the scanty supplies furnished by the neighbourhood. Greene was compelled at length, by the want of provisions, to relinquish this position. About the same time he received intelligence which induced him to doubt the approach of Watson. On which he ordered Lieutenant Colonel Carrington to rejoin him; and on the 24th, returned to the north side of the town, and again encamped on Hobkirk's hill, a ridge covered with uninterrupted wood through which the great Waxhaw road passes. The army was encamped in order of battle, its left covered by the swamp of Pine-tree creek.
Higher up, this river is called the Catawba.
A drummer, who deserted on the morning after Greene's return, and before he was rejoined by Lieutenant Colonel Carrington, gave information to Lord Rawdon that the artillery and militia had been detached. His lordship determined to seize this favourable occasion for fighting his enemy to advantage, and, at the head of nine hundred men, marched out of town on the morning of the twenty-fifth to attack the American army.
Lieutenant Colonel Carrington had arrived in camp that morning, and brought with him a supply of provisions which had been issued to the troops, some of whom were employed in cooking and others in washing their clothes. Notwithstanding those occupations, they were in reach of their arms, and were in readiness to take their ground and engage at a moment's warning.
By keeping close to the swamp, and making a circuit of some distance, Lord Rawdon gained the American left without being perceived ; and about eleven, his approach was announced by the fire of the advanced piquets, who were half a mile in front of Greene's encampment. Orders were instantly given to form the American line of battle.
The Virginia brigade commanded by General Huger, consisting of two regiments under Campbell and Hawes, was drawn up on the right of the great road. The Maryland brigade commanded by Colonel Wil. liams, consisting also of two regiments, under Gunby and Ford, was on the left, and the artillery was placed in the centre. The North Carolina militia under Colonel Read formed a second line; and Captain Kirkwood with the light infantry was placed in front for the purpose of supporting the piquets, and retarding the advance of the enemy. General Greene remained on the right, with Campbell's regiment.
Captain Morgan of Virginia, and Captain Benson of Maryland, who commanded the piquets, gave the enemy a warm reception ; but were soon compelled to retire. Captain Kirkwood also was driven in, and the British troops appeared in view. Rawdon continued his march through the wood along the low ground in front of the Maryland brigade which was in the act of forming, until he reached the road, where he displayed his column.
Perceiving that the British advanced with a narrow front, Greene ordered Colonel Ford, whose regiment was on the extreme left, and Lieutenant Colonel Campbell, whose regiment was on the extreme right, severally to attack their flanks, while Gunby and Hawes should advance upon their front with charged bayonets. To complete their destruction by cutting off their retreat to the town, Lieutenant Colonel Washington was ordered to pass their left flank and charge them in the rear.
The regiments commanded by Ford and Campbell, being composed