Hike through a Revolutionary War Battlefield

By:Marie McAden

Date:4/14/2013


On its way from the mountains to the Carolina coast, the Palmetto​ Trail winds through the state’s hilly Pie​dmont and the site of a Revolutionary War battlefield that put the wheels in motion for the epic Battle of Cowpens.

William Blackstock’s plantation would serve as the stage for a decisive Patriot Victory — one of the most significant among the 200 battles and skirmishes that took place in the Southern Campaign of the American Revolution.

The ​Blackstock Battlefield Passage of the Palmetto Trail offers four miles of moderately difficult nature trails through a beautiful forest featuring several species of hardwoods, pines and wildflowers, including the crane-fly orchid. The main trail skirts the site of the battle that pitted Patriot General Thomas Sumter against Lt. Banastre Tarleton, nicknamed “Bloody Ban.”

You can read about the battle at a kiosk located in the trailhead parking area. As you begin your walk into the woods, the path is mostly flat. But after a few minutes, you’ll descend along switchbacks to the high bluffs overlooking a remote section of the scenic Tyger River.

To the left, where the river intersects with Hackers Creek, are primitive campsites. Take the right fork to continue along the loop trail. You’ll have the chance to enjoy wonderful views of the river for about a mile before the trail heads back up the hillside to the clearing where the battlefield lies.

If you’re not up for a hike, you can drive right to the historic site. Follow the road past the trailhead parking area until it loops around a circular stand of trees with a historic marker in the center. It is here the Battle of Blackstock was fought on Nov. 20, 1780.

About 100 British soldiers were killed and several others wounded in the battle. The Patriots suffered 16 casualties. Despite its bloody history, the setting couldn’t be more peaceful with its gently rolling hills framed by towering evergreens.

To download a brochure on the Blackstock Battlefield Passage, click ​here.

Related Content

Tour Historic Cowpens National Battlefield
Cowpens National Battlefield features exhibits about Cowpens Battle along with a map illustrating the Southern Campaign of the American Revolution. On site is a museum of authentic Revolutionary War weapons, including a three-pounder canon.
Visit Historic Camden Revolutionary War Site
Camden is the oldest existing inland town in the state. The Historic Camden Revolutionary War Site is just 1.4 miles from Interstate 20 at exit 98. Learn the history of Camden and stroll the quiet grounds of the Revolutionary War Site.
Visit the Musgrove Mill State Historic Site in Clinton
Visitors to Musgrove Mill State Historic Site in Clinton can walk the very grounds where Patriots clashed with British Loyalists during the Revolutionary War. The park’s one-mile British Camp Trail takes you into the woods to the Enoree River.

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