The Rice Kings’ Revolt: The Revolutionary Experience in South Carolina 1774-1776
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This case study, entitled The Rice Kings’ Revolt, the Revolutionary Experience in South Carolina 1774-1776, is an attempt to fill the void created by conventional narratives and focuses on the events unfolding in South Carolina during the early stages of the American War for Independence. The Revolutionary experience in South Carolina is unique. It was more of a “coupe de estate” then a “revolution.” In South Carolina, the wealthy lowcountry planters, or Rice Kings, engineered the end of royal rule in the province and stepped into the void created by the destruction of the British colonial government, to install themselves at the head of the province’s new civil government. The study’s first section demonstrates how the end of royal rule in South Carolina came about, how the lowcountry elites defeated or neutralized all of the potential threats to their power within the province, and obtained complete power in the region. The study’s second section focuses on the Battle of Sullivan’s Island in 1776, which is the most important military event in the south during the first three years of war. American victory at Sullivan’s Island illustrated to the British the resolve of the American southern colonist, secured thirty months of peace for the south, and also cemented the Rice Kings’ monopoly on power. The Battle of Sullivan’s Island secured the Rice Kings’ position because it removed the threat of an external British invasion that would have unseated them before they had the chance to firmly entrench themselves in power.
Franklin and Marshall College Archives, Undergraduate Honors Thesis 2006
- F&M Theses Collection