That he entered the service of the United States and served as herein stated; to-wit:
During the Revolutionary War I lived in Lincoln County, State of North Carolina, and was a militia Captain of a company in said County when I first entered the service of the United States, which was in the month of July in the year 1780, and the following are the circumstances:
Just after the appointment of Gates to the command of the Southern army, orders were received by the militia officers to hold a draft for men to serve in that army for three months. Accordingly the draft was made and six were drafted out of my own company, as well as I remember. I was commissioned the Captain of the Company from Lincoln and commanded as such during the expedition. We rendezvoused near Charlotte and my company was placed in Col. Alexander’s regiment, and in the Brigade commanded by Gen’l Griffith Rutherford; one Wm. Rankin was Lieutenant in my company.
About the dawn of day the battle of Camden commenced and soon ended in the defeat of our army. Having joined the main army so short a time before the battle commenced I am not able to describe the order in which Gates formed his men, but in regard to Rutherford’s Brigade, I distinctly remember it was divided into platoons and on that day I had the command of a platoon instead of my company. By whose fault this battle was lost I know not, but one thing I do know, it was not mine, for I know I done my duty. The blame was attributed to Gates, but whether he was obnoxious to the charge I will not venture to say. At any rate the loss was great and the fall of DeKalb at the head of the Continentals was an irreparable loss.
The bravery of this officer and those under him, and the undaunted courage shown by them when there was none to support them, created a universal sympathy for their sufferings and no doubt served to increase the blame against Gates. As soon as our terms of service were out we were discharged, which I think was in the month of October following, having fully served out the three months for which we were drafted. The success of the enemy at Camden gave the Tories more confidence and they became more bold, more daring, and more numerous. Assisted by detached parties of the British they marched through the country almost with impunity, committing every sort of crime. They established posts in various places and for a while seemed to have subjugated the country. Yet there was a few who kept the field, and if it is not boasting to say so, I was one. About this time I was re-commissioned by the Governor of N. Carolina and appointed again a Captain in the militia of the State. Under this commission I returned to Lincoln county to raise a volunteer company and to join Col. Dixon who had the command of a regiment of volunteer militia. But on my return to my old company I found but eight men who were good and true, the rest had joined the Tories. Such was the disaffection in that country at that time. With this eight I took the field about the first of November, 1780,
During my service under Col. Dixon, we were engaged in many enterprises and many circumstances took place which I have not related, and indeed my memory does not enable me to describe particularly all the circumstances that happened. On my return from Camden I found Col. Dixon engaged in raising a Regiment of volunteers for the defence of the country and I immediately joined him as before stated and went into my old company to raise my quota of men—indeed get all I possibly could, and having been commissioned by the Governor of North Carolina Captain of the company from Lincoln in the expedition to Camden, and having been previously commissioned Captain of a company in Lincoln, as such officer I used every exertion to raise men for the defence of the country. I entered into this last service under Col. Dixon sometime in the month of November, 1780, about the first of that month, and continued in that service without a days intermission until about the last day of October following. I remember distinctly we were not discharged until a short time after the battle at Yorktown and surrender of Cornwallis. I will mention that during the year 1781, while I was out on service, the Tories came upon my plantation in Lincoln County and destroyed nearly all my property and among the rest they took five horses from me. ∗ ∗ ∗ ∗ ∗