Like HowStuffWorks on Facebook!

Ninety Six National Historic Site


Ninety Six National Historic Site
©National Park Service
Ninety Six, at one time an important
British stronghold, was destroyed by
patriots in 1781.

The village of Ninety Six in South Carolina is said to have gotten its name from the distance it lay from the Cherokee town of Keowee. The trail between the two villages was a busy trade route, and by the beginning of the Revolutionary War, Ninety Six was a thriving trading post.

On November 18, 1775, 1,800 loyalists attacked a force of less than 600 patriots gathered there in the first major land battle in the South. The two sides fought to a standoff and declared a truce, but the next six years were marked by fierce factional fighting.

The most famous confrontation was a siege that took place in the spring of 1781. Ninety Six had become an important British stronghold, garrisoned by 550 seasoned loyalists and protected by a stockade fort on one side and an earthen "star" fort on the other. Patriot General Nathanael Greene arrived with more than 1,000 men and began to lay siege to the town. Word came shortly that a large relief force of British soldiers was on its way to aid the besieged loyalists, and Greene decided to storm the post before he was trapped by the approaching army.

The general divided his forces between the stockade fort on the west and the star fort on the east, attacking both simultaneously. The west contingent fought their way into the stockade fort, but the troops attacking the star fort met fierce resistance and were repelled after heavy casualties on both sides. With time running out, Greene removed his troops under darkness. Though technically they had failed in their mission, Greene and his men had so damaged the fort that it was abandoned by the British a few weeks later.

Ninety Six National Historic Site Information

Address: Ninety Six, SC 29666
Telephone: 864/543-4068
Hours of Operation: The visitor center is open daily 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. daily except Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year's Day; trails are open daily daylight to dusk
Admission: Free

Learn more about these other national historic sit­es:

Abraham Lincoln Birthplace National Historic Site Clara Barton National Historic Site
Fort Larned National Historic Site
Grant Kohrs Ranch National Historic Site
Knife River Indian Villages National Historic Site
Pennsylvania Avenue National Historic Site
Theodore Roosevelt Birthplace National Historic Site
Adams National Historic Site
Edgar Allen Poe National Historic Site Fort Raleigh National Historic Site Hampton National Historic Site Lincoln Home National Historic Site Puukohola Heiau National Historic Site Theodore Roosevelt Inaugural National Historic Site
Allegheny Portage Railroad National Historic Site Edison National Historic Site Fort Scott National Historic Site Harry S. Truman National Historic Site Longfellow National Historic Site Sagamore Hill National Historic Site Thomas Stone National Historic Site
Andrew Johnson National Historic Site Eisenhower National Historic Site Fort Smith National Historic Site Herbert Hoover National Historic Site Maggie L. Walker National Historic Site Saint Paul's Church National Historic Site Thomas Stone National Historic Site
Boston African -American National Historic Site Eleanor Roosevelt National Historic Site Fort Vancouver National Historic Site Home of Franklin D. Roosevelt National Historic Site Manzanar National Historic Site

Saint-
Gaudens National Historic Site

Touro Synagogue National Historic Site
Brown v. Board of Education National Historic Site Eugene O'Neill National Historic Site Frederick Douglass National Historic Site Hopewell Furnace National Historic Site Martin Van Buren National Historic Site Salem Maritime National Historic Site Ulysses S. Grant National Historic Site
Carl Sandburg Home National Historic Site Ford's Theatre National Historic Site Frederick Law Olmsted National Historic Site Hubbell Trading Post National Historic Site Mary McLeod Bethune House National Historic Site Saugus Iron Works National Historic Site Weir Farm National Historic Site
Charles Pinckney National Historic Site Fort Bowie National Historic Site Friendship Hill National Historic Site James A. Garfield National Historic Site Mc Loughlin House National Historic Site Sewall -Belmont House National Historic Site Whitman Mission National Historic Site
Chicago Portage National Historic Site
Fort Davis National Historic Site Gloria Dei Church National Historic Site Jimmy Carter National Historic Site Ninety Six National Historic Site Springfield Armory National Historic Site William Howard Taft National Historic Site
Christian
-sted National Historic Site
Fort Laramie National Historic Site Golden Spike National Historic Site John Fitzgerald Kennedy National Historic Site Palo Alto Battlefield National Historic Site Steamtown National Historic Site


To learn more about national monuments, memorials, and historic sites, and other travel destinations in North America, visit:

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Eric Peterson is a Denver-based author who has contributed to numerous guidebooks about the Western United States.


More to Explore