Friday, February 26, 2010

Jane Black Thomas – Revolutionary

Jane Thomas and her husband John came to South Carolina from Pennsylvania before the American Revolution. During the war, both of them served their country with courage.
Perhaps Jane’s contribution is best expressed in her death notice, which was published in the Carolina Gazette on May 25, 1811.
“In the year 1779, when the tories attacked the house of her husband to get a magazine (ammunition) kept there, she cooperated with her son and son-in-law in guarding it. While they fired on the assailants, she advanced in front of them with a sword in her hand and dared them to come on. They were intimidated and retired.
“She steadily refused to drink any tea after the war, saying, ‘it was the blood of some of the poor men who first fell in the war.’
“She enjoyed good health throughout her long life (she lived to be 90), lived on a spare diet with frequent draughts of buttermilk but never took any physic.”
Jane Thomas is also known for a courageous ride to notify the Whigs of a planned attack. Her husband and son were captives of the British at Ninety Six. Jane was allowed to visit them, and her husband gave her a message for Gen. Thomas Sumter. Jane delivered the message personally and while returning to the fort heard that Tories were planning an attack on Cedar Springs near her home, some 60 miles away from Ninety Six. Not stopping to rest, she galloped toward Cedar Springs to warn her son who commanded the Whigs there. She rode hard, swimming her horse across the flooded Enoree and Saluda rivers. She arrived in time, and the Whigs were prepared to fight off the Tories, taking many prisoners.

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