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Remembering the Battle of Camden

Posted: August 19, 2014 4:40 p.m.
Updated: August 20, 2014 6:00 a.m.
Jim McGowan/C-I

Carol Sheridan (left) tells the story of the Battle of Camden to Cub Scouts from Den 316 during Historic Camden Revolutionary Site’s remembrance of the 234th anniversary of the Battle of Camden on Saturday. For more pictures, see our Localife section.

Uniform and clothing exhibits, storytelling, guided tours of the Kershaw-Cornwallis House, colonial era games, weapons and equipment exhibits and blacksmithing demonstrations filled Historic Camden Revolutionary War Site during a remembrance of the Battle of Camden’s 234th anniversary on Saturday.

Historic Camden Foundation staff members and volunteers presented the exhibits -- including games such as cup ball and hoop rolling -- while dressed in authentic era clothing. The foundation also held a wreath laying ceremony at the actual Battle of Camden site, approximately 9 miles north of the city on Flat Rock Road where the battle took place on Aug. 16, 1780.

Historic Foundation Director Joanna Craig estimated that some 450 visitors came to the site for the annual remembrance. Foundation members, whose goals are not only to preserve, but to educate the public, displayed a detailed knowledge of the era.

Back during that period, soldiers on both sides wore and fought in solid wool jackets weighing 5 to 6 pounds despite the summer heat that could reach more than 100 degrees, according to Lance Player, a foundation volunteer. Player said the weapons soldiers carried weighed more than 15 pounds, with the remaining gear -- bayonet, powder horns, lead ammunition, canteens and a fully loaded back pack -- brought the colonial infantryman’s load to an estimated 100 pounds.

Craig said a full battle reenactment is planned for Nov. 2 with exhibits featuring encampments of both British and American forces showing how the soldiers of 1780 lived. Cannons will roar at 1:30 p.m. that day with both sides represented in authentic uniforms. She said there will also be a “Sutler’s Row” with 17 shops and craftsman displaying their wares. Once again, foundation members will be in period dress to explain it all to residents and visitors alike.


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