The American Revolution in North Carolina

Deep River

May 1782


Patriot Cdr:

Andrew Hunter
Loyalist Cdr:

Col. David Fanning
Killed:

0
Killed:

0
Wounded:

1
Wounded:

0
Captured:

all his slaves
Captured:

0
Original County: 

Randolph County
Present County:

Randolph County

Andrew Hunter was a well-known Patriot who lived on the Little River in Randolph County. He was outspoken on American independence and he had made some disparaging remarks about Col. David Fanning and his Loyalists. When Col. Fanning heard about these he swore he would end Hunter's life. Although Col. Fanning had captured Andrew Hunter several times before, the Patriot was somehow able to escape each time.

Sometime after Fanning's wedding, Andrew Hunter and his neighbor John Latham were riding a cart to market to pick up a load of salt. They saw Col. Fanning approaching and Hunter covered himself up in the back of the cart. When he arrived, Col. Fanning asked Latham where he was going. Latham replied that he was going up the Pee Dee to the market.

Col. Fanning asked if he had anything to eat in the back of his cart. Latham told him that he only had a little food and hoped that the Loyalists would not take it. Fanning swore and said that he would have the food and soon found Andrew Hunter under the covering. He told Hunter to get out - because he didn't have long to live.

Col. Fanning's men wanted to eat first before they killed Andrew Hunter. They threw a rope at Hunter's feet and told him that this was the rope he would hang with. The Loyalists stacked their arms and began to grind coffee. Fanning noticed that Hunter was very near the stacked guns and reprimanded the men for their lack of security.

While Fanning was chastising his own men, Hunter leaped on the back of Fanning's horse, Bay Doe. The mare would not move. When Fanning ordered his men to shoot Hunter, the mare ran off at full speed at the first shot. Since he did not want his horse shot he ordered the men to make sure to only hit Hunter. One shot hit Bay Doe in the shoulder and a second shot hit Hunter in the shoulder, but he barely noticed it.

Andrew Hunter rode to the house of a man named Nathaniel Steed, who sent for a doctor. Hunter recovered within a few days. Hunter had not only stolen Col. Fanning's horse, but in the bargain he got two pistols that Major James H. Craig had given to Fanning when he gave him his colonel's commission. Fanning was outraged and determined that if he could not get Hunter then he would extract vengeance on Hunter's family.

Fanning and his men rode to Hunter's house and plundered it. They took the pregnant Mrs. Hunter and all of his slaves and hid them in the nearby woods. Fanning then sent a message to Hunter with an offer to return his wife and slaves if he would send back the horse and pistols. Hunter told him that the horse had been sent west to get medical help, and then he asked Fanning if he would leave his wife behind to tend to his wound.

Fanning knew that time was running out and that he would need to soon leave before the many Patriot patrols would finally find him. He left Hunter's wife behind, but he took one of the horses and all of Hunter's slaves. Fanning then took his sixteen-year-old bride and the newly-gotten slaves with him to South Carolina.

Known Patriot Participants

Known British/Loyalist Participants
Andrew Hunter
John Latham
Col. David Fanning, with unknown number of men
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© 2009 - J.D. Lewis - PO Box 1188 - Little River, SC 29566 - All Rights Reserved