Francis Marion was born in 1732 in what is now South Carolina. When he was a toddler he was small, skinny, weak, and frequently sick. It was said that he was no bigger than a lobster. He was sick a lot because of the swampy areas he grew up in. As he got older he played in the swamps a lot, which is probably the reason why he knew the swamps so well. He learned about the entire local Indians and how they survived in the swamp.
It was said the he literally knew the swamps like the back of his hand and never got lost. When he got to the age of fifteen he wanted to be a sailor and against his parents will he set on a ship headed for the West Indies. On this trip the ship sank and along with several other crewman he was stranded at sea until the lifeboat finally hit dry land. Marion really got lucky because he didnt know how to swim.
In 1760 he became the lieutenant of a militia in the Cherokee War. He proved that he was a very good horsemen and marksmen which really did help later on in his life. After this small war Marion decided that he would settle down to a small farmers life. He became very successful and owned a lot of land. When Marion realized that the revolutionary war was going to become he came out of retirement.
Like most soldiers in the revolutionary war he considered himself a patriot and a man that dearly cherished his freedom. Since he had some experience in early military battles he was made captain of the Continental Army. Because of his success he grew more and more important in the ranks. He went from Captain to Major to Colonel and eventually General. His group of soldiers was a raggedy group of tough guys who had bad uniforms, poor equipment, and bad attitudes.
Marion believed that the only way to defeat the British was to use guerilla tactics. Many of his trooped were dreary of the idea of guerilla tactics. To them it was cowardly and not honorable to strike quickly and then retreat before giving the British a full fight. Eventually the realized who right Marion was and grew to like the idea realizing that it was the only style of fighting that suited them. Marion and his soldiers targeted the British supply camps and supply lines. They would rest all during the day and do all their fighting at night, most often at midnight.
Marion was able to the supply lines to the British occupied cities and chase the harassed and tormented British troops and leaders. The most notable of the leaders was Colonel Bana stre Tarleton. Marion showed his wonderful talent for strategies and tactics and was known for his own personal bravery. He is also said to be the father of the U. S. Army special forces because of his creative ideas and tactics.
One of the things he did was to have scouts ride ahead to prevent ambushes. Some of them would hide in the tops of trees and signal with shrill whistles. Another example is if they were attacking and had to cross a bridge he would lay blankets over the wooden planks to prevent the loud clanking of the horses hoofs. Also he never used a campfire twice and always kept the target to himself until the very last moment. These strategies confused the British who would chase after Marion and his men into the swamps and then get lost. The British often complained that it was unfair and not "civilized warfare." Even though the British are often seen as uptight and like to complain they did have a pretty good point.
Marion didnt always "play fair." He and his men were known to shoot pickets, retaliated from ambush and sometimes keep on fighting even when the British waved a flag of truce. Marion knew that by doing all these things he was violating international law, but he didnt just do all this because he was a mean person. Marion earned his nickname "Swamp Fox" by Colonel Tarleton who often chase Marion into the swamp. Tarleton said, "The devil himself could not catch that old fox." He was also seen as a Robin Hood to South Carolina As the Revolutionary War raged on Marion grew more and more successful.
He fought in battles at Kings Mountain, Cowpens, Guilford Courthouse, Georgetown, and finally Eutaw springs in August 1781. All of these battles led up to the British surrender in that same year. Bibliography 1. Microsoft Encarta, Francis Marion web 2. The Life of Francis Marion web 3. "Francis Marion" Microsoft Encarta 98 encyclopedia 4.
"Francis Marion" Microsoft Bookshelf 98 5. "Francis Marion" web. 1. Microsoft Encarta, Francis Marion web 2. The Life of Francis Marion web 3. "Francis Marion" Microsoft Encarta 98 encyclopedia 4.
"Francis Marion" Microsoft Bookshelf 98 5. "Francis Marion" web.