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Colonial and State Records of North Carolina
Letter from William Smallwood to Horatio Gates
Smallwood, William, 1732-1792
October 16, 1780
Volume 14, Pages 698-699


Moravian Town, October 16th, 1780.


I was informed by Express on the 14th Instant, at Capt. Lindsay's, 12 Miles South of Guilford Court house, that the Tories had embodied in the Upper part of Surry, and marched down through Richmond to the old Moravian Town, intending to cross at the Shallow Ford over the North branch of the Yadkin to join the British. Their Strength was reported to be nine hundred.

As they passed they plundered, disarmed and paroled many of the Inhabitants, and determined to imprison and carry off others who had been more obnoxious. This induced me to March with all possible expedition to this place, with an intention to attack and intercept them.

On my arrival here, about 12 o'Clock yesterday, Immediately sent out Scouts to obtain more certain Intelligence of their real Strength and Situation; in the interim assembled 200 Militia

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horse, and proposed marching at 10 o'Clock last Night in order to surprise them at day break this Morning; but upon return of my Scouts last Evening they informed me the Enemy had attempted to cross the Shallow ford the day before, when they were attacked and defeated by Major Cloyd with 160 of the Virginia and Carolina Militia; 15 of the Tories were found dead and four wounded. Our loss, one Capt. killed and four privates wounded. No prisoners were taken. The Tories, being well mounted, made their Escape. I have ordered the Militia in pursuit, and make no doubt many will fall into their hands. I shall immediately march with the Cavalry to join the Army, and in the interim am, with great Regard,

Your Obedt. Hble. Servt.,

I have this Moment received the agreeable News of the Enemy's Retreat from Charlotte, for a more Circumstantial Account of which I refer you to the inclosed Copies of Genls. Sumner and Davidson's Letters,

And am, as above, Sir,
Your Obedt. Hble. Servt.,