Daniel Morgan's Masterpiece, Part I
Back in seventeen eighty-one
The revolution hit hard times,
Britain had taken Charlestown
And at Camden had crushed the lines
Of General Horatio Gates,
Leaving nobody to resist,
Except the Swamp Fox Marion
Who alone was able to persist.
South Carolina had fallen,
And Cornwallis was marching north,
The patriots had to stop him,
But could not yet match up with his force.
So they called up Daniel Morgan,
A brawler who had earned his fame
With his actions at Saratoga,
As a soldier he knew the game.
He was sent to march out westwards,
To harass and gain new supplies,
Cornwallis worried about this,
Let Banastre Tarleton fly.
Tarleton was a cavalry fame,
His infamy now widely known,
He’d butchered his foes at Waxhams,
When upwards their hands had been thrown.
The patriots called him Butcher,,
‘Bloody Bann’ was his sobriquet,
Yet many feared the young colonel,
From his legion they would run away.
But General Morgan knew all this,
He was pragmatic in his approach,
Knew what his men could and couldn’t do,
Where they thrived, where they were laid low.
Knowing Tarleton was close by,
He found a spot called ‘Hannah’s Cowpens,’
Nearby the flooded Broad River,
Here all tradition he’d upend.
Knowing militia ended to flee,
And not face a hand-to-hand fight,
He put their backs to the river,
They couldn’t run to escape their plight.
Now they would fight, or they would die,
But he felt this wasn’t enough,
So he split his force into three lines,
Plotting an elaborate bluff.
If the first he put sharp-shooters,
Told them to shoot ‘Epaulet Men,’
Then set up local militias
To form a line just behind them.
And the back were Continentals,
Tried soldiers of many a year,
These he knew didn’t break and run,
They were the few the British feared.
To top it off he arranged them
All on the slopes of a small hill,
Then waited there for Tarleton
Who expected an easy kill.
Tarleton had seen it all before,
At Charlestown and Camden field,
These rebels could talk a good game,
But in a fight they’d run of they’d yield.
So when he spotted Morgan’s force
He did not bother to survey,
Bold and young, he rushed in headlong
Expecting the militia to break...
CONCLUDES IN PART II.
Copyright © David Welch | Year Posted 2019
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