The American Revolution in South Carolina

Williams's Plantation

December 30, 1780

Patriot Cdr:

Col. Joseph Hayes
Loyalist Cdr:

Bragider General
Robert Cunningham






Old District: 

Ninety-Six District
Present County:

Newberry County/
Laurens County

Capt. John Ridgeway's company was a detachment under Lt. Col. William Washington in the hard battle at Hammond's Store. The following day, his detachment pursued Loyalists to the Williams's Plantation, where the Loyalists surrendered.

Brigadier General Robert Cunningham with about 100 to 150 Loyalists occupied Fort Williams, situated a few miles northwest of the main fort in the region, Ninety-Six. Continental Lt. Col. Washington sent a detachment of forty dragoons under Cornet James Simmons and some mounted militia under Col. Joseph Hayes to take the fort. When they arrived, Col. Hayes demanded the fort's surrender.

Brigadier General Cunningham asked for some time to consult with his officers. During this time, some of the Loyalists slipped out of the back of the fort and into the woods. A few of them were spotted and killed, but most escaped. According to one account, Brigadier General Cunningham and most of his men were able to slip out a rear exit, though a few Loyalists were taken.

Another version states that the fort was evacuated before Cornet James Simmons and Col. Joseph Hayes arrived. Food and other stores were taken, though the fort itself was left intact.


"On the 31st December Colonel Washington was detached to Fort Williams in order to surprise some Tories that lay there; and meeting with a party of them near said place, upon which ensued a smart engagement, the latter having one hundred and sixty men killed dead, and thirty-three made prisoners."

Known Patriot Participants

Known British/Loyalist Participants

Col. Joseph Hayes - Commanding Officer

1st Regiment of Continental Light Dragoons (VA) detachment of 10 men led by Cornet James Simons

Little River District Regiment of Militia detachment led by Col. Joseph Hayes with 40 men in three (3) known companies, led by:
- Capt. James Dillard
- Capt. John Ridgeway, Sr.
- Capt. John Barry (Roebuck's Battalion of Spartan Regiment)







Brigadier General Robert Cunningham - Commanding Officer

Ninety-Six District Brigade of Loyalist Militia led by Brigadier General Robert Cunningham with 150 men and the following known officers:
- Capt. William Payne
- Capt. William Parker
- Capt. William Griffin
- Capt. John Mayfield
- Capt. Christopher Neily
- Capt. John Brown
- Capt. David Jones
- Capt. William Cradock
- Capt. William Helms
- Capt. James Campbell
- Capt. Arthur William
- Capt. William Hendricks
- Capt. John Dalrymple
- Capt. Joseph Person

Dunlap's Corps of Provincial Cavalry led by Capt. William Cunningham

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