The Battle of Kings Mountain in South Carolina during the Revolutionary War was a major turning point in the British attempt to gain control of the Southern colonies. On October 7, 1780, a force of American patriots, known as the Overmountain Men, achieved a decisive victory over a loyal detachment of British forces. This battle was significant for many reasons, including its influence on indigenous land, the formation of an autonomous government, and its role in delaying the British invasion of North Carolina. The British had long viewed all colonists as illegally occupying native land, but they had actually signed land lease agreements with the Cherokee Indians.
In 1772, after signing a ten-year lease, the Watauga and Nolichunky settlers formed the Watauga Association, an autonomous government that made them the first settlers in the United States to establish a democratic and independent government. This was a major milestone in the formation of the United States of America. Major Patrick Ferguson and his loyalist troops were commissioned by Major General Charles Cornwallis to secure the region west of the mountains. The Overmountain Men had largely stayed out of the American Revolution until this point, but they were outraged by Ferguson's threat to “wipe out” their country. Men from all over the area were asked to meet and march through the mountains to bring the fight to Ferguson before he could cross into North Carolina. The Battle of Musgrove Mill took place on August 19, 1780 near a ford on the Enoree River.
This battle was followed by another victory for Cornwallis at Camden, South Carolina on August 16, 1780. After this victory, Cornwallis decided it was time to move to North Carolina. The Battle of Kings Mountain was ultimately a crushing defeat for the British. The Patriots caught up with the Loyalists at Kings Mountain and defeated them in a decisive victory. This battle delayed Cornwallis' planned invasion of North Carolina and proved that even with Charleston, South Carolina under British control, they were unable to prepare and direct those loyal to South Carolina to develop reliable combat units across the state. The Battle of Kings Mountain was an important event in South Carolina's history.
It had a major impact on indigenous land, led to the formation of an autonomous government, and delayed the British invasion of North Carolina. It is remembered as a major victory for American patriots and is celebrated as such today.