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 Visiting Battlefields, Historical Sites, and Museums    
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Dave G
Halifax, NS, Canada
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Posts: 92

South Carolina Trip (from Canada)
Posted on: 6/18/2016 6:05:24 PM
I spent a couple of weeks checking some Revolution battlefields in SC.
Here's what I found out.
1. Before the trip I ordered a NY EZ-Pass and saved a lot of headaches with no worries about trying to maneuver through multiple lanes of traffic and back to get to the cash lane.
2. Canadian gas is cheaper than Yankee gas: I was paying about $1 CDN per litre when I left. American gas worked out to $1.20-$1:30 CDN per litre when I did the conversion.
3. The MasterCard Canadian Zip Code (Postal Code numbers plus "00") actually DOES WORK at most gas stations except Citgo where it never worked. It actually did work at a Rutter's station in PA.

4. Battlefields:
A) Brandywine MD: The VC was not open but I checked out Osborne Hill and Birmingham Hill (Battle Hill).
B) Kings Mountain: I was there a couple of years ago but it's a lot better when it's not raining.
C) Cowpens: Great!
D) Waxhaws (Buford's Massacre): Nice little spot, although the fighting apparently was fought across the road from where the two acre park is.
E) Hanging Rock: A great trail through the forest. Although it's a state park, The place is totally anonymous except for a single marker mounted on a boulder in the middle of the woods. If you didn't know it was there, you'd never find it.
F) Camden: Really interesting trails in a beautiful pine forest. This was where Gates got whupped by the British and galloped all the way to North Carolina before he got off his horse. The battle was supposedly portrayed in the movie "The Patriot" but the terrain has absolutely no resemblance to the movie.
G) Ninety Six: Very interesting spot, good trails -- you have to go there to understand the battle(s).
H) Musgrove's Mills: A really interesting state park. The trail leads through a forest to a small field where the main action occurred. The Americans suckered the Brits into an ambush. Although outnumbered 2:1, the Patriots won but this was just after the Battle of Camden so they had to disperse instead of keeping after the Brits/Loyalists.

Checked the South Cavalry Field again at Gettysburg on the way back.I'm pretty much convinced that the Andie Custer version of Farnsworth's charge (Blue & Gray Magazine, 2006 --no longer in print) was much more accurate than the traditional account.
---------------
Dave G

BWilson

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Posts: 3522

Re: South Carolina Trip (from Canada)
Posted on: 6/19/2016 2:31:09 AM
The battle was supposedly portrayed in the movie "The Patriot" but the terrain has absolutely no resemblance to the movie.

 I had that feeling when I saw "To Hell and Back" (Audie Murphy's war experience). The scene depicting the location where he won the Medal of Honor was one of the rolling terrain of Yakima, Washington -- nothing like the flat checkerboard of fields and woods near Colmar. The film also depicted balmy weather and good visibility, which is hardly the case for Alsace in January of any year!

 Sounds like you had a good trip. I like the Carolinas.

Cheers

BW
---------------
With occasional, fatigued glances at life's rear-view mirror from the other side of time.

littlepowell
SC, USA
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Re: South Carolina Trip (from Canada)
Posted on: 6/19/2016 2:47:27 PM
Great post, thanks for sharing Dave G.

I live just a stones throw from most of these places and I've only been to Cowpens. You're right though, it's a great place to visit, very well preserved with a nice little museum. I didn't even realize Musgrove Mills was so close to where I live. I'm already making plans to visit!
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Dave G
Halifax, NS, Canada
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Posts: 92

Re: South Carolina Trip (from Canada)
Posted on: 6/19/2016 10:31:52 PM
Hi lp,
There are two state park sites associated with Musgrove Mill. The Musgrove Mill site has a Visitor Center and a trail along the Enoree River where the mills and the ford were. The other site is at Horseshoe Falls where a trail through the forest leads to a field where the main battle occurred. Although some of my photographs are not great, I uploaded all of the markers for the second trail to HMDB.org starting with this one: [Read More]

The same Visitor Center manages a park for the fight at Blackstock's Farm/Plantation just south of the Tyger River, but I did not manage to get to that one. You should plan on hitting them all.
---------------
Dave G

littlepowell
SC, USA
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Posts: 406
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Re: South Carolina Trip (from Canada)
Posted on: 6/20/2016 9:30:36 AM

Quote:
Hi lp,
There are two state park sites associated with Musgrove Mill. The Musgrove Mill site has a Visitor Center and a trail along the Enoree River where the mills and the ford were. The other site is at Horseshoe Falls where a trail through the forest leads to a field where the main battle occurred. Although some of my photographs are not great, I uploaded all of the markers for the second trail to HMDB.org starting with this one: [Read More]

The same Visitor Center manages a park for the fight at Blackstock's Farm/Plantation just south of the Tyger River, but I did not manage to get to that one. You should plan on hitting them all.

--Dave G


Awesome, I'll definitely have to plan a day trip there with the family. It's about a 40 minute drive to the Musgrove site. Thanks again for sharing.
---------------
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Michigan Dave
Muskegon, Michigan, MI, USA
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Posts: 2960

Re: South Carolina Trip (from Canada)
Posted on: 6/20/2016 9:53:37 PM
You have to visit Charleston, specially it's Forts, & Plantations!

MD
---------------
"The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract."

Dave G
Halifax, NS, Canada
top 50
E-4 Specialist


Posts: 92

Re: South Carolina Trip (from Canada)
Posted on: 6/20/2016 10:55:02 PM

Quote:
You have to visit Charleston, specially it's Forts, & Plantations!

MD
--Michigan Dave


I had hoped to get in a few more places including Fort Moultrie & Sumter, but just ran outta time. Also I wanted to see Fort Watson & Eutaw Springs-- I might get back when the Canada$ is a bit closer to par.
---------------
Dave G

littlepowell
SC, USA
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Re: South Carolina Trip (from Canada)
Posted on: 7/21/2016 10:00:39 AM
Dave G - I'm taking the family to Musgrove Mills this weekend. I'll see if I can grab a few photos to share.
---------------
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Michigan Dave
Muskegon, Michigan, MI, USA
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Posts: 2960

Re: South Carolina Trip (from Canada)
Posted on: 7/22/2016 8:48:16 AM
Guys, while your telling us about SC Military facilities feel free to give restaurant recommendations in the area!?

:)
MD
---------------
"The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract."

littlepowell
SC, USA
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Posts: 406
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Re: South Carolina Trip (from Canada)
Posted on: 7/22/2016 5:21:22 PM
Musgrove is postponed until next weekend due to rain in the forecast.

MD - If you ever get out to Cowpens, Ike's Korner Grill in Spartanburg has the best burgers in SC. It's a must stop if you're down that way. But another must stop is the gym afterwards..
---------------
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Dave G
Halifax, NS, Canada
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Posts: 92

Re: South Carolina Trip (from Canada)
Posted on: 7/23/2016 2:36:52 PM

Quote:
Guys, while your telling us about SC Military facilities feel free to give restaurant recommendations in the area!?

:)
MD
--Michigan Dave

Although I generally head for the nearest Golden Corral, there were a couple of restaurants on my route that were worth mentioning.
At Ninety Six, SC, the Cheeseburger House with also allegedly the best burgers in SC.
At Richburg SC, the Front Porch. It's got great food and all that weird stuff you never hear of in the GWN like grits & okra. Richburg is south of Charlotte in the middle of the Revolution battlefield country.
---------------
Dave G

littlepowell
SC, USA
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Posts: 406
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Re: South Carolina Trip (from Canada)
Posted on: 7/24/2016 10:19:39 AM
As far as the fancier side of restaurants, downtown Greenville has many options. Soby's, Larkins on the River, Trappe Door. The West Side of Greenville has undergone a major rejuvenation the last several years and it really has become a nice place to visit.
---------------
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littlepowell
SC, USA
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Re: South Carolina Trip (from Canada)
Posted on: 8/1/2016 9:36:55 AM
Visited Musgrove Mill historic site this weekend. Although we only had time to see the visitors center and part of the British camp before a storm moved in. That's July in SC for you--brutally hot, and strong thunderstorms every week.

The visitors center was great though. The electronic map was an excellent visual aide for the flow of the battle, and the colonial period toys kept the kids busy for a while.

The battle was a mere skirmish compared to ACW standards, but still a savage affair.. 63 British Loyalists lost their lives with 70 captured, in a battle that lasted less than an hour. There really aren't any good battle maps to be found on the web--perhaps I can make one some day.

I plan to go back when the weathers nicer--perhaps sometime in the fall, where I'll get to actually tour the battlefield and take some photos. I heard that one can get a great view of the ridge the Patriots defended.
---------------
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Dave G
Halifax, NS, Canada
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Posts: 92

Re: South Carolina Trip (from Canada)
Posted on: 8/1/2016 12:45:26 PM

Quote:
There really aren't any good battle maps to be found on the web--perhaps I can make one some day.
--littlepowell


I found the maps in the Savas-Dameron book fairly good (A Guide to the Battles of the American Revolution). They have maps for almost every battle although for some reason there are no maps for Ninety Six even though there were two engagements there.

However, I'm a bit confused about the ford location and the two Enoree Rivers -- the real one and Cedar Shoals Creek that also is called the Enoree River but actually flows into it. The Savas map puts the British camp on the real Enoree and does not show Cedar Shoals Creek. It would be nice to know where the ford was in relation to where Cedar Shoals Creek and the Enoree River join up. If you want a scan of the Savas map, send me a PM.

---------------
Dave G

littlepowell
SC, USA
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Posts: 406
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Re: South Carolina Trip (from Canada)
Posted on: 8/1/2016 5:31:17 PM

Quote:


However, I'm a bit confused about the ford location and the two Enoree Rivers -- the real one and Cedar Shoals Creek that also is called the Enoree River but actually flows into it. The Savas map puts the British camp on the real Enoree and does not show Cedar Shoals Creek. It would be nice to know where the ford was in relation to where Cedar Shoals Creek and the Enoree River join up. If you want a scan of the Savas map, send me a PM.


--Dave G


Well I'll do my best to help solve this mystery. Like I needed an excuse to get back out there...
---------------
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Dave G
Halifax, NS, Canada
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Posts: 92

Re: South Carolina Trip (from Canada)
Posted on: 8/1/2016 7:35:07 PM
For anyone interested, you can see a preview of the Savas-Dameron "A Guide to the Battles of the American Revolution" HERE [Read More]

Before I read this book, I knew zip about the ARW except what I saw in the movie "The Patriot." This book has 69 major battles with a map for almost all of them. Highly recommended if you start running out of ACW battlefields.
---------------
Dave G

Michigan Dave
Muskegon, Michigan, MI, USA
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Posts: 2960

Re: South Carolina Trip (from Canada)
Posted on: 8/1/2016 8:49:45 PM
Dave,

Impressive book, thanks for posting!

Regards,
Dave
---------------
"The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract."

littlepowell
SC, USA
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Posts: 406
http://www.scourgeofwar.com/
Re: South Carolina Trip (from Canada)
Posted on: 8/3/2016 3:00:13 PM

Quote:

However, I'm a bit confused about the ford location and the two Enoree Rivers -- the real one and Cedar Shoals Creek that also is called the Enoree River but actually flows into it. The Savas map puts the British camp on the real Enoree and does not show Cedar Shoals Creek. It would be nice to know where the ford was in relation to where Cedar Shoals Creek and the Enoree River join up. If you want a scan of the Savas map, send me a PM.


Dave - My initial research has brought me to the following conclusion--this is going to take a lot more research.

So far I have three references; the Savas Map, the Park service map, and a photo of the Diorama from the visitors center.

Surprisingly enough, the Diorama may give us the biggest clue since it shows both the camp, the Musgrove house (which was supposedly located directly in front of the present day visitors center--although historians aren't 100% clear on this), The Enoree River, Cedar Shoals Creek, AND the actual ford crossing.. See below for the photo.

However, this map and the Savas map completely disagree with each other, since the Savas map shows the camp to the right of ford crossing, where the Diorama shows it far to the left of it.

This may be one of those unfortunate situations where there just isn't enough historical data to make any clear determination. But I will continue to research this. The ranger at the visitor center came across as very knowledgeable on the battle, so perhaps she may have the answer. Either way, I'll keep you posted.



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Dave G
Halifax, NS, Canada
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Posts: 92

Re: South Carolina Trip (from Canada)
Posted on: 8/3/2016 10:46:37 PM

Quote:

However, this map and the Savas map completely disagree with each other, since the Savas map shows the camp to the right of ford crossing, where the Diorama shows it far to the left of it.

This may be one of those unfortunate situations where there just isn't enough historical data to make any clear determination. But I will continue to research this. The ranger at the visitor center came across as very knowledgeable on the battle, so perhaps she may have the answer. Either way, I'll keep you posted.
--littlepowell


The photo clears up some of the confusion. The Battlefield trail (Horseshoe Falls Trail) follows the north side of Cedar Shoals Creek to Horseshoe Falls. Then it soon turns north and follows the old wilderness road to the clearing where the battle was fought. So apparently Cedar Shoals Creek turns south toward the Enoree River near Horseshoe Falls. The battlefield trail does not go near the ford. I was confused about whether the British had to cross two streams or just one.
The British Camp trail on the south side of the Enoree River also goes past a ford. A nearby sign identifies this as Musgrove's Ford on "the old wagon road." This ford is just west of the SC-56 bridge. I posted the signs along the Battlefield Trail on the north side of the Enoree River at HMDB.org -- many of the signs follow the old wagon road and the route of the British. This is the marker for "Ford Country" near Musgrove's Ford. Click for the map to see some of my Battlefield Trail marker locations north of the river. [Read More]

Wherever the British camp was, it was not far from the ford that they had to use to follow the old wagon road.

Incidentally, I believe I was talking to the same ranger at the Visitor Center. She had a book with around 200 battles fought in the ARW in SC. It was very impressive, but I didn't buy it because SC is generally beyond my travel range.
---------------
Dave G

littlepowell
SC, USA
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Re: South Carolina Trip (from Canada)
Posted on: 8/4/2016 10:35:54 AM
Thanks Dave, great info. So I believe we about have this cleared up. I think the visitors center Diorama is the most accurate depiction of the battle area. I am more/less an amateur map maker--someday when I have the time, I would like to construct a more accurate map. The Savas map is great for showing the troops positions and names. Hopefully mine can provide this, as well as the accurate layout of the terrain. GPS technology is great for this. I can walk the field while documenting and referencing the current maps.

This is a great hiking blog that goes into some detail on the battle, and shows the tough terrain the British troops had to travel over.

[Read More]

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littlepowell
SC, USA
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Re: South Carolina Trip (from Canada)
Posted on: 11/19/2016 9:04:31 AM
Just tagging this thread so it doesn't get archived.. I still plan to build a Musgrove map, perhaps when I have some free time during the holidays.
---------------
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Dave G
Halifax, NS, Canada
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Posts: 92

Re: South Carolina Trip (from Canada)
Posted on: 11/20/2016 11:52:04 AM

Quote:
Just tagging this thread so it doesn't get archived.. I still plan to build a Musgrove map, perhaps when I have some free time during the holidays.
--littlepowell

If you would be interested in another battle where the locations are in doubt, check out Hanging Rock, SC.
The battle was fought on August 6, 1780 when American patriots, under Sumter, attacked a British supply depot in the middle of nowhere. The Americans won. The battle is named for a very impressive stack of boulders on the east side of Hanging Rock Creek.

The Campaign 1776 map shows this action occurring along the Camden Road which is now Flat Rock Road (SC-S29-15). The Americans are shown attacking from north to south against the British with both sides centered on the road. Today this area is flat farmland.
[Read More]

However, the Savas book places the battle on the east side of Hanging Rock Creek with the Americans attacking in an easterly direction with an alignment stretching north to south. The opponents appear to be centered on what is now Hanging Rock Road which is shown but not labeled on the Campaign 1776 map at the lower right. This is about 1 km away from where Campaign 1776 puts it. Savas mentions "There is some debate about the location of the battle." Today this area is all forest with some deep ravines.

So now I have no idea where the battle was fought, but it's worth a trip to see those boulders.
---------------
Dave G

littlepowell
SC, USA
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Re: South Carolina Trip (from Canada)
Posted on: 11/22/2016 3:41:15 PM
Sounds interesting, Dave. That's a little longer trip for me coming in at about 2 and half hours. But would make a good day trip.
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Michigan Dave
Muskegon, Michigan, MI, USA
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Posts: 2960

Re: South Carolina Trip (from Michigan)
Posted on: 2/27/2017 9:31:28 AM
Guys,

Just returned from a great trip to Savannah, GA, Charleston, SC, areas. Saw a lot of great history. Fort Pulaski, Fort Moultrie, Fort Sumter, lots of plantations, and of course tours of these great historic cities, cemeteries were particularly interesting!

Ya gotta love travel!
MD
---------------
"The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract."

Brian Williams
Atlanta, GA, USA
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Re: South Carolina Trip (from Michigan)
Posted on: 2/28/2017 10:25:40 AM
Make sure you don't miss Patriot's Point in Charleston..."Home of the USS Yorktown".
[Read More] https://www.patriotspoint.org/

littlepowell
SC, USA
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Re: South Carolina Trip (from Michigan)
Posted on: 2/28/2017 11:53:07 AM

Quote:
Make sure you don't miss Patriot's Point in Charleston..."Home of the USS Yorktown".
[Read More] https://www.patriotspoint.org/
--Brian Williams


Indeed, toured it back in grade school on a field trip and again when I was an adult.

I think I was even more fascinated by the submarine that is also onsite, the USS Clamagore. I couldn't get over how close quarters some of the areas are--a claustrophobics worse nightmare.
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Brian Williams
Atlanta, GA, USA
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Re: South Carolina Trip (from Michigan)
Posted on: 2/28/2017 12:03:43 PM

Quote:

I think I was even more fascinated by the submarine that is also onsite, the USS Clamagore. I couldn't get over how close quarters some of the areas are--a claustrophobics worse nightmare.
--littlepowell


I'm over 6 feet and the USS Clamagore gave me serious claustrophobia. I won't be going in it again.

Michigan Dave
Muskegon, Michigan, MI, USA
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Posts: 2960

Re: South Carolina Trip (from Michigan)
Posted on: 3/1/2017 7:15:17 PM
Hi Brian,

Didn't make it to Patriots Point this time, but I got some nice picks of USS Yorktown, from the Charleston Water front!

[Read More]

Maybe next time?
MD
---------------
"The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract."

littlepowell
SC, USA
top 25
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Posts: 406
http://www.scourgeofwar.com/
Re: South Carolina Trip (from Michigan)
Posted on: 10/5/2017 8:21:04 AM
Both of my sons are studying the Revolutionary War in school right now. We are planning a trip to Cowpens next weekend. I've been a couple times, but only toured the museum with a casual drive around the battlefield loop. This time we plan to walk the battlefield with map in hand and do a more in depth study. Pictures to come.
---------------
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Michigan Dave
Muskegon, Michigan, MI, USA
top 5
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Posts: 2960

Re: South Carolina Trip (from Michigan)
Posted on: 10/12/2017 3:40:18 PM
lp,

Must be nice to live in South Carolina, the cradle of so much CW, & Revolutionary War History?

Plus the weathers is so warm most of the year!

Winter coming to Michigan soon! Brrrrrr,
MD

Your only a stones throw from Charleston, & Savannah, lucky you, but I'm there for several weeks most winters now that I'm retired!
---------------
"The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract."

littlepowell
SC, USA
top 25
E-6 Staff Sergeant


Posts: 406
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Re: South Carolina Trip (from Michigan)
Posted on: 10/13/2017 9:41:57 AM

Quote:
lp,

Must be nice to live in South Carolina, the cradle of so much CW, & Revolutionary War History?

Plus the weathers is so warm most of the year!

Winter coming to Michigan soon! Brrrrrr,
MD

Your only a stones throw from Charleston, & Savannah, lucky you, but I'm there for several weeks most winters now that I'm retired!
--Michigan Dave


Yes, I love everything about South Carolina. The history, the mountains, the beach... all except for the brutal heat in late June to July-August.. lol. I would definitely trade two+ months of brutal heat for two+ months of brutal winter... Although I've never shoveled snow in my life, so maybe I'm being a bit spoiled.. lol.
---------------
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littlepowell
SC, USA
top 25
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Re: South Carolina Trip (from Michigan)
Posted on: 11/1/2017 12:19:11 PM
From a recent trip to Cowpens. This is the first time I really got to tour the field in depth. I was surprised how detailed the documented actions were. I'm used to Revolutionary War battlefield having general locations, but the waysides showed precise ridges, dips, etc. where the fighting occurred.

The Grasshopper - 3 lb canon used by the British (the Colonials captured one of them)



Looking towards the Scruggs house on the historic Green River Road which runs down the center of the battlefield.









Sorry for the poor quality--if you look close those are Wild Turkeys.








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