The Overmountain Men were from west of the Appalachians and were soldiers in the American Revolution. They are best known for their victory in the Battle of Kings Mountain in 1780. They were called overmountain men because they lived west of, or over, the Appalachians.
The Battle of Kings Mountain was a decisive battle of the American Revoluton. It took place on October 7, 1780, nine miles south of the present-day town of Kings Mountain, North Carolina. The Patriot militia defeated the Loyalist militia commanded by British Major Patrick Ferguson.
The Battle of Kings Mountain was on October 7, 1780. Nine hundred patriots were led by militia Colonels William Campbell, John Sevier, Frederick Hambright, Joseph McDowell, Benjamin Cleveland, James Williams, John McKissack, and Isaac Shelby. Captains Joseph Winston and Edward Lacey commanded autonomous units. Shelby led men from what is now Sullivan County, Tennessee and Sevier led men from current day, Washington County. Campbell led men from Washington County, Virginia.
Major Patrick Ferguson commanded the loyalist militia of about 1,000 Americans.
Appalachian frontiersmen rallied at Sycamore Shoals and crossed the mountains to Kings Mountain near the border between North and South Carolina.
The patriots approached the base of Kings Mountain at dawn. Two parties, led by Sevier and Campbell, attacked the highest point. The other seven groups, led by Shelby, Williams, Lacey, Cleveland, Hambright, Winston and McDowell attacked the main Loyalist position.
Ferguson launched a bayonet charge against Campbell and Sevier's men. At first, the rebels retreated down the hill and into the woods, but Campbell rallied his troops and returned to the base of the hill and resumed firing.
Two more times, Ferguson launched bayonet attacks. During one of the charges, Williams was killed and McDowell wounded. But after each charge, the patriots returned to the base of the hill and resumed shooting.
Ferguson was killed and the loyalists surrendered.
The American Revolutionary War (1775–1783) was between the Kingdom of Great Britain and the 13 colonies which became the newly formed United States.
Sullivan County is in far northeast corner of Tennessee between North Carolina and Virginia and was originally part of those states. It was formed in 1779 when it was divided from Washington County.
Washington County, Virginia was formed from Fincastle County in 1777. It originally contained Sullivan County, Tennessee.