Chrétien Lemaire was there

How important is it to find out that your ancestor was a rifleman in the Hesse Hanau Regiment and that he deserted his post in North Carolina in 1780?

The battle of Wahab’s Plantation will never be the same for Arthur Myers’ descendants.

Arthur Myers

Arther Myers, Chrétien Lemaire’s descendant

I found this information about Wahab’s Plantation on the Internet. It was hard to find, but not as much as finding information about Chrétien Lemaire a Hesse Hanau chasseur who was just a name on a card file of a researcher.

Chrétien Lemaire

What happened on 20-21 September?

Wahab’s Plantation, also Wauchope’s Plantation (Union County, 1116 S.C.)

When about September 8th Cornwallis moved with his army to Waxhaws, it was on the same ground occupied by Davie in June and July 1780, located on the S.C.-N.C. border. It was a rich country but one much devastated by warfare and neglect; many of the plantations were completely deserted, and a large number of the inhabitants killed, captured or made refugees.

Davie had recently been appointed Col. Commandant of all cavalry of North Carolina. He had 70 dragoons and two companies of riflemen commanded by Maj. George Davidson, he was posted twenty-five miles above the British camp at Providence, and fourteen miles south of Charlotte. The 71st Regt. was posted about a half mile in Cornwallis rear, Cornwallis on the north side of Waxhaws Creek. To the east of the 71st were some loyalist light troops and militia, who had been spreading “havoc and destruction.” Davie finding out about this, “formed a design to attack them.” Early morning of 20 September he circled Cornwallis position, coming from the east.1117 Finding the loyalist had moved a few days before, he continued scouting and found them at Wahab’s plantation, a location overlooked by the camp of the 71st. It is not clear who these loyalists were, but references which suggest that horsemen were present among their ranks make it probable that they included Harrison’s Provincials.

On the morning of the 21st, Davie surprised and routed them, though he could not follow this up as being too risky. At one point in the fighting, some of the loyalists were surrounded and Davie’s cavalry cut them down; the whigs being unable to take prisoners due to the proximity of the 71st. He did, however, capture some arms (120 stand) and 96 horses, and with the horses Maj. Davidson’s men were mounted. The British suffered 15 to 20 killed, and 40 wounded, while only one of the Americans was wounded. The late arriving British, in retaliation, burned the home of Capt. James Wahab [Wauchope],1118 who himself had acted as a guide for Davie. That same afternoon Davie returned to his camp, having performed a march of sixty miles in twenty-four hours.1119 Davie: “Generals [Jethro] Sumner and [William Lee] Davidson had arrived that day [the 21st] at camp with their brigades of militia[,] both of which However did not amount to one thousand men all on short enlistments, illy armed and diminishing every day. These with Davie’s corps were the whole assembled force at that time opposed to the enemy.”1120 Brig. Gen. William Lee Davidson, on possibly Sept. 24 (the date of the letter is not clear) and at “Camp, 8 miles South of Charlotte,” wrote Gates: “I have the pleasure to enform you that Colo. Davie, with a Detachment of Horse and Light Infantry from my Brigade, compleatly surprized a party of Tories on the morning of the 20th Sept., two miles in the rear of the British encampment.

Killed, 12; on the ground, wounded, by our best intelligence, about 60, and brought off our prisoner, and the Colo. made good his retreat with 50 Horses, as many saddles, 13 guns, &c.

1111
COC ~ (Henry Clinton’s) Clinton’s Observations on Earl Cornwallis’s Answer. p. 30.
1112
CNC volume number 14 ~ The State Records of North Carolina (Walter Clark, editor)6 p. 773.
1113
CDI ~ (Alexander Chesney) Diary of Captain Alexander Chesney (Samuel C. Williams, editor) from Tennessee Historical Magazine
1114
PRO. ~ British “Public Records Office”. 30/11/80/31-32.
1115
COC ~ (Henry Clinton’s) Clinton’s Observations on Earl Cornwallis’s Answer. pp. 22-23.
1116
Some sources, such as McCrady, suggest Lancaster county, but recent scholarship indicates Union to be the area in question.
1117
Lee says from Cornwallis’ left, or from the west, which Davie points out is incorrect
1118 His actual name was apparently spelled “Wauchope.” DRS ~ (William Richardson Davie’s) Revolutionary War Sketches of William R. Davie (Blackwell P. Robinson, editor). p. 55n.
1119
LMS ~ (Henry Lee’s) Memoirs of the War in the Southern Department (1869 edition) p. 195, DRS pp. 21-23, SNC p. 104-112, MSC1 pp. 742-743.
1120
DRS ~ (William Richardson Davie’s) Revolutionary War Sketches of William R. Davie (Blackwell P. Robinson, editor) pp. 21-23, LMS ~ (Henry Lee’s) Memoirs of the War in the Southern Department (1869 edition) p. 195.
1121
CNC volume number 14 ~ The State Records of North Carolina (Walter Clark, editor) 614-615

The source of the text above is here.

Did Chrétien Lemaire deserted at the battle of Wahab’s Plantation or the next one, the Battle of Charlotte?

Excerpt

The Battle of Charlotte was an American Revolutionary War battle fought in Charlotte, North Carolina on September 26, 1780. The battle took place at the Mecklenburg County Court House, which is now the site of the Bank of America tower at Trade and Tryon Streets in downtown Charlotte. An advance guard of General Charles Cornwallis’ army rode into town and encountered a well-prepared Patriot militia under the command of William R. Davie in front of the court house. A skirmish ensued in which George Hanger, leading the British cavalry, was wounded. The small Patriot force, which had not intended more than token resistance, withdrew north toward Salisbury upon the arrival of Cornwallis and the main army.

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