(Florence County). Snow’s Island, in the southeast corner of Florence County, was the legendary campsite of the Revolutionary War general Francis Marion, the “Swamp Fox.” The island consists of highland marsh surrounded by the Pee Dee River, Lynches Creek, and Clarks Creek. Marion occupied Snow’s Island from late December 1780 through January 1781, and it is possible that he camped there as early as August 1780. That August he took command of a band of Williamsburg County Whigs who were camped along Lynches Creek at Witherspoon’s Ferry, just upstream from Snow’s Island. After January 1781 Marion used the island as a supply base, although he was seldom, if ever, there himself. In March 1781 British forces under the command of Colonel Welborn Ellis Doyle raided and destroyed the campsite. In the raid, seven of Marion’s men were killed and fifteen were wounded, and British prisoners held at the camp escaped to the safety of British forces at Georgetown. While the campsite was being destroyed, Marion’s main forces were fighting another British force under the command of Colonel John Watson, who had the same objective of destroying Marion and his camp. Marion did not rebuild the camp. The exact location of the camp is not known, but it is believed to have been at William Goddard’s plantation on the northern part of the island. It is possible that Marion’s occupation actually consisted of several temporary camps on and near the island, instead of a single permanent campsite.
Bass, Robert. Swamp Fox: The Life and Campaigns of General Francis Marion. New York: Holt, 1959.
James, William Dobein. A Sketch of the Life of Brig. Gen. Francis Marion. 1821. Reprint, Marietta, Ga.: Continental Book Company, 1948.
Rankin, Hugh F. Francis Marion: The Swamp Fox. New York: Crowell, 1973.