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Home > Real Men > Military > Francis Marion

Francis Marion


Born 1732 (approx). Berkeley County, South Carolina.
Died 1795.


Francis Marion was born in South Carolina in roughly 1732. He began a military career in 1761 when he led a successful raid against the Cherokee. He was elected to the first provincial congress of South Carolina, but on the brink of war, the congress appointed him captain of a newly organized militia.

Marion commanded the capture of British forts in Charleston, South Carolina, in September 1775. He was promoted to lieutenant colonel when the Continental Congress took over his regiment.

Francis Marion, aka Swamp FoxWhen the British took captured Charleston in 1780, American troops pulled out of South Carolina. Marion stayed behind and organized a small force of men and trained them in guerrilla tactics. Poorly equipped and living off the land, Marion and his men were able to capture small groups British soldiers, sabotage communication and supply lines, and rescue American prisoners. They avoided capture by withdrawing to swamps that were unfamiliar to the British, earning Marion the nickname "Swamp Fox."

Near the end of the war Marion joined forces with American General Nathanael Greene. In 1781 they forced the British to retreat to North Carolina after the Battle of Eutaw Springs.

Marion was elected to the senate of South Carolina in 1781 while still leader of his brigade. He was reelected in 1782 and 1784, after the war ended. He was appointed commander commander of Fort Johnson in Charleston in appreciation for his military service.

Marion died in 1795, but his legacy lives on. A national forest was named after him in South Carolina, and Marion, Iowa celebrates its annual Swamp Fox Festival in September. In 1970, Francis Marion University was founded in Florence, South Carolina. In June 2000, Mel Gibson starred in the movie The Patriot, a movie that was loosely based on Marion's Revolutionary War experiences in fighting from South Carolona swamps. There was even at one time a Arena Football League 2 team named the Charleston Swamp Foxes.

Francis Marion on the web...
Francis Marion on Wikipedia

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