Fishing Creek Battle Site
The Battle of Fishing Creek took place on 18 August 1780, just after the Battle of Camden. The battle was fought on the west side of the Catawba River and the north side of Fishing Creek, near the point where Fishing Creek flows into the Catawba. The precise location of the battle is not known; however, it is probable that the site of the conflict is now under the waters of Fishing Creek Reservoir, near the Catawba River Dam.
The battle was essentially a British surprise attack on the 800-man camp of Whig partisan leader, Thomas Sumter. Sumter had been appraised of the horrendous American defeat at Camden and had been ordered to remove his force to Charlotte NC as soon as possible. Nevertheless, he was surprised by a 160-man detachment of the British Legion, commanded by Lt. Colonel Banastre Tarleton. Sumter's men were still in camp engaged in cooking, sleeping and bathing! Sumter himself barely escaped capture and his men were routed. The Americans lost 150 dead and 300 men were captured! Conversely, the British received only 16 casualties.
This SC Historical Marker is situated along US Highway 21 just north of its juncture with SC 97, on the west bank of the Catawba River (now part of Fishing Creek Reservoir).
Farther north on US Highway 25, about one-half mile from the SC Historical Marker, is this granite monument put up in 1930 by the DAR.
This view of the Catawba River Dam was taken from the SC 97 Bridge where it crosses the Catawba River. The dam is situated just above the point where Fishing Creek flows into the River.
Upstream view of Fishing Creek at the point where it is crossed by SC 97. This location is just above the Creek's junction with the Catawba River.