TODAY IN SOUTH CAROLINA HISTORY: The Patriot with Mel Gibson

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Francis Marion, the Swampfox

On June 30, 2000, The Patriot, a feature film starring Mel Gibson, is released in theaters. Mel Gibson plays Benjamin Martin, an American swept up in the Revolutionary War when a sadistic British officer murders Martin’s son.  The script writer Robert Rodat claims that Benjamin Martin is a composite character based on four different historical people, one of them being Francis Marion, the Swampfox who took command in the Pee Dee on August 10, 1780.

Much of the movie was filmed in York County, South Carolina, and although Time magazine labeled The Patriot one of the top 10 most historically inaccurate films in history, I rather enjoyed the movie.

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