Letter from General Nathanael Greene to Francis Marion, the Swamp Fox

140705DavidNeilanFrancisMarion
Francis Marion, the Swamp Fox.  The letter below I cite from pg. 202 from Traditions of the Swamp Fox by William Willis Boddie

On April 24, 1781, General Nathanael Greene sent the following letter to Francis Marion, the Swamp Fox. Written and sent from his camp in Camden, Greene wrote:

When I consider how much you have done and suffered, and under what difficulties you have maintained your ground, I am at a loss which to admire most, your courage and fortitude or your address and management. Certain it is, no man has a better claim to the public thanks than you have. History affords no instance wherein an officer has kept possession of a country under so many disadvantages as you have. Surrounded on every side by superior forces, hunted from every quarter with veteran troops, you have found means to elude their attacks, and to keep alive the expiring hopes of an oppressed militia, when all succor seemed to be cut off. To fight the enemy bravely with the prospect of victory, is nothing; but to fight with intrepidity under the constant impression of defeat, and inspire irregular troops to do it, is a talent peculiar to yourself. Nothing will give me greater pleasure than to do justice to your merit, and I shall miss no opportunity of declaring to Congress, to the commander-in-chief of the American army, and to the world, the sense I have of your merit and your services.

Greene_portrait
General Nathanael Greene

5 comments

    • Thanks for sharing, Mike. That’s interesting that Francis Marion is a descendant of yours. Appreciate you checking the Commission’s blog.

      Max

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      • Max, Francis Marion isn’t my ancestor. My (whatever) grandfather, Captain Philip (correct first name) Pledger, served with him during the War. Interesting stuff. When I find out just where he’s buried (in Cheraw) I’ll let you know. Take care.
        –Mike

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  1. Max, this is right down my alley! My Great-g-g-g? Grandfather, Captain John Pledger (not sure of first name but I have it somewhere) served with Francis Marion throughout the Revolutionary War. He’s buried in a churchyard cemetery in Cheraw (again, I have the specific info somewhere). Very interesting piece of history. Thanks for posting!
    –Mike

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