Skirmish, *Col. Hezekiah Maham vs. Unknown, 17 Nov 1781
32.9271171 -79.7164668, Wappetaw Church
32.9451727 -79.7253562, Wappetaw Bridge
Maps: [map notes]
- Mills 1820 Charleston District map:
- Lipscomb, South Carolina Revolutionary Battles - Part Ten (MS H-2-2), p. 31-32
Needless to say, the British enjoyed no long-range success in keeping Marion's patrols out of the vicinity, and sometime during the fall of 1781, the British post at Wappetaw Meeting House came under attack by a corps of state troops and militia commanded by Colonel Hezekiah Maham. Although this battle was probably of some significance, it represents yet another gap in the published historical record. Apparently, the British must have taken a beating, since a number of royal troops are said to have been killed or captured. This outpost was located about thirteen miles north of the modern community of Mount Pleasant, in a church building that the British had converted into a fortified stronghold.
The Wappetaw Independent or Congregational Church seems to have experienced a series of misfortunes during the Revolution. Not only was the house of worship appropriated for military use, but the pastor is said to have been murdered in the parsonage house by his slaves during these unsettled times. The British added the crowning piece of mischief by burning the meeting house together with the church records when they abandoned the post at the close of the war.44 The site is on U.S. 17 in Charleston County.
44 Pension Accounts of John China and Thomas Broughton, National Archives; Howe, Presbyterian Church, vol. 1, pp. 461-62.
Broughton's memory for dates is better than that of most Revolutionary pensioners, but he has a tendency to match them with the wrong battles.
- John China, Pension Application S46593
... in September 1781 he
volunteered his services as a common Soldier in General Marion's Brigade of Militia, whilst the
Regiment was encamped at Doughty's plantation on Santee River. He was there placed in a company
commanded by the following officers: William Dukes, Captain, Joseph Fox, 1st Lieutenant, Joseph
Kerry, 2nd Lieutenant. The Regiment to which this company was attached was commanded by Colonel
Richard Richardson, Lieutenant Colonel John James and Major Gamble. He served in this Regiment a
has a private or common Soldier ten months. He was in no Battle during this time but recollects the
following engagements of the Brigade: In a month after joining the Brigade it moved from its station at
Doughty's, 10 or 12 miles lower down the River to Canty's [sic, Cantey's] plantation. Whilst here this
deponent was sent with a detachment of militia drafted to accompany Colonel Maham's Corps of Horse
on and expedition to Haddrell's Point. He was detached from the command of his immediate company
officers and does not now recollect the immediate officers in command of his company. This
detachment continued out on duty eight days during which time this deponent was in a skirmish at
Wapetaw [sic, Wappetaw] Meeting House with the British who had fortified the Meeting House and
encamped there. In this skirmish some of the enemy were killed and some taken prisoners. After this
the detachment returned to the Brigade which from time to time changed its position up and down
Santee River until December 1781 when it encamped at Strawberry Ferry on Cooper River. ...
- Thomas Broughton, Pension Application W897
– he was at the battle of Wopetaw
[sic, Wappetaw], on the 3rd January 1782 [See Lipscomb's comment on Broughton and dates] – and received a wound in the ear – Colonel Maham's
Regiment was alone in this battle –
- Edward McCrady, The History of South Carolina in the Revolution, 1780 -1783, McMillan, 1902, p.487ff
The only services in which the mountaineers were
employed while with Marion were in attacks upon the
post at Fair Lawn and on the redoubts at Wappetaw in
St. Thomas's Parish. Detachments of about 200 of them,
supported by Maham s cavalry of about 180, were in both
instances employed under the command of Colonel Shelby.
The latter place, on being approached, was abandoned, for
General Stuart was then drawing in his forces under the
protection of Charlestown.
- William Dobien James, Life of Brig. Gen. Francis Marion, Not found.
- Barefoot(SC) Not found
- SC Historical Highway Historical Marker Guide, Not found.
- NBBAS:Three, p.392. 17 Nov 1781. Redoubt at Wappetaw. American victory.
Marion ordered Maham’s Regiment and a detachment of Shelby’s backwoodsmen to attack the redoubt at Wappetaw. When the British saw the Carolinians approaching they abandoned the post without a shot.
- Sherman's Calendar.... Ends before this date.
- Nov 1781 listing 11/1781 Wappetaw. Insufficient data. Per O'Kelley.
Confidence level: 5