Fort Ninety-Six


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Ninety-six, FORT, a defensive work on the site of the village of Cambridge, in Abbeville district, South Carolina; so named because it was 96 miles from the frontier fort, Prince George, on the Keowee River, 147 miles northwest from Charleston. On May 22, 1781, General Greene commenced the siege of this fort. It was garrisoned by American loyalists, commanded by Lieutenant-Colonel Cruger. Greene had less than 1,000 regulars and a few raw militia. The fort was too strong to be captured by assault, and regular approaches by parallels were made under the direction of Kosciuszko. The work of the siege was interrupted by an occasional sortie for about a month, when Greene, hearing of the approach of Rawdon with a strong force to relieve Cruger, made an unsuccessful effort (June 18) to take the place by storm. On the following evening Greene raised the siege and retreated beyond the Saluda River. Rawdon pursued them a short distance, when he wheeled and marched to Orangeburg. Soon afterwards the fort was abandoned, and the garrison joined Rawdon's troops on their march to Orangeburg, followed by a train of frightened Tory families. Greene also followed, but soon retired to the high hills of Santee to refresh his troops.



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