Susan F. Craft
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American Revolutionary War Timelines and Illustrations- Page 5

Battle of Camden

August 1780- Death of General De Kalb

When Cornwallis heard news of the gathering storm on the borders of South Carolina, he decided to join Lord Rawdon, who was stationed at Camden. He arrived there 13 August, and found to his dismay that many of the British troops were ill, and the whole force would amount to but little, he therefore planned to march forward and meet General Gates before the arrival of the Virginia troops, which were known to be advancing.

General Gates was joined by Kalb, who commanded the Delaware and Maryland forces, and they decided to attack Camden. While the American army was approaching, Cornwallis struck his tents and marched toward Gugeley's. Neither party was aware of the close proximity of its opponent until the advanced guards met, about two o'clock in the morning.

In the battle that ensued soon after sunrise, Kalb commanded on the American right and was driving his adversary, Lord Rawdon, before him, when the defeat of our left wing exposed his flank and rear to the assaults of Webster and Tarleton. Kalb was thus attacked on all sides, but remained during the whole encounter, fighting bravely to the last. Bareheaded and dismounted, with sword in hand, he engaged in one personal encounter after another, encouraging his men with his voice as well as his example, till he had received eleven wounds. His lieutenant, Hu Buysson, saved him from instant death, he died three days afterward, and was buried at Camden.




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