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“N” is for Ninety Six, Battles of (1775, 1781)

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“N” is for Ninety Six, Battles of (1775, 1781). Situated in the South Carolina backcountry at the crossroads of important trade routes, Ninety Six was a newly established courthouse town on the eve of the Revolutionary War. In November 1775 a force of eighteen hundred Loyalists attacked a smaller force of Patriots that had erected a stockade near Ninety Six. After three days of fighting with few casualties, the two sides agreed to a truce. In February 1781 General Nathanael Greene laid siege to the now heavily fortified British outpost. For twenty-eight days the small American army steadily dug siege lines and defended them against frequent sallies by the fort’s defenders. On June 17th, Greene launched an unsuccessful frontal assault. With news that British reinforcements were on the way, Greene’s forces reluctantly withdrew from Ninety Six.

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Dr. Walter Edgar has two programs on South Carolina Public Radio: Walter Edgar's Journal, and South Carolina from A to Z. Dr. Edgar received his B.A. degree from Davidson College in 1965 and his Ph.D. from the University of South Carolina in 1969. After two years in the army (including a tour of duty in Vietnam), he returned to USC as a post-doctoral fellow of the National Archives, assigned to the Papers of Henry Laurens.