Everyone knew Colonel Sevier's rugged frontiersmen for their long-rifle marksmanship-and their touchy eagerness for a brawl. But no experienced military man of that day expected men armed only with hunting weapons to be able to face and defeat real soldiers, trained to use the bayonet.
It had never happened-until Kings Mountain. Three times longhunters from eastern Tennessee charged up this mountainside. Once, then twice they were chased back down by Torie wielding 17-inch-long bayonets. Somehow Sevier's patriots found the courage to stop running, turn around, and go back up against that fearsome cold steel one last time.
Patriot militias face Crown-trained troops
Every man at Kings Mountin, Whig or Tory, knew that only six weeks ago, patriot militias had been overwhelmed in battle at Camden, South Carolina. There well-drilled Crown troops had used standard European tactics and cold steel to send the Whigs running for their lives.