A preservation group has bought 180 acres in Wilkes County, about 100 miles east of Atlanta, to preserve the site of a Revolutionary War battle.
The Battle of Kettle Creek took place on Feb. 14, 1779. A group of about 400 Patriots surprised and defeated a group of British loyalists twice their size. It was the Patriots first big win in Georgia.
Never heard of it? That’s not surprising to Jim Lighthizer. He’s president of the Civil War Trust, the battlefield preservation group that bought the land.
“Every American victory, however small, was very significant because it subtracted men from the British cause, and they were not easily replaced,” he said.
The $400,000 purchase will triple the size of the site. The land will eventually go to Wilkes County and will be protected from development.
Lightihzer says a number of important Revolutionary War battles were fought in the South, many of them unknown.
“There’s a whole lot of American history that America’s never heard of, and what we’re trying to do is save those small, now largely forgotten, obscure battlefields and tell that story,” he said.
The Civil War Trust is also working to save other Revolutionary War battlefields across the south with plans to incorporate them into a historic trail.