Robert Anderson (Revolutionary War)

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Robert Anderson
Robert Anderson's grave marker at Old Stone Church (Clemson) cemetery.JPG
Robert Anderson's grave marker at Old Stone Church (Clemson) cemetery
Born November 15, 1741
Died January 9, 1813 (aged 71)
Occupation Militia officer and surveyor
Spouse(s) Anne Thompson
Parent(s) John and Jane Anderson

Robert Anderson (November 15, 1741 – January 9, 1813) was a politician, militia officer, and surveyor from South Carolina. He was a lifelong friend of General Andrew Pickens. Anderson, South Carolina, Anderson County, South Carolina, and the ghost town of Andersonville are named for him.


Early life

He was born on November 15, 1741 in Augusta County, Virginia. His parents were John and Jane Anderson who had immigrated from Ireland.

Marriage and children

He married Anne Thompson in 1765. They moved to South Carolina and settled near his friend from Virginia, Andrew Pickens. She died after twenty-five years of marriage. They had five children:

  • Robert, Jr., married Maria Thomas.
  • Anne married Dr. William Hunter.
  • Mary (1766–1810) married Robert Maxwell[1] (1753–1797), a Revolutionary War hero, was appointed as Sheriff of the Greenville District. He lived in Greenville County, and was killed by an ambush on November 10, 1797 while crossing the Saluda River shoals where Piedmont Mill Dam was later built. His grave is located fifteen miles south of Greenville, near Ware Place.
  • Jane Anderson (b. 12 June 1775) Married William Shaw.
  • Elizabeth married Samuel Maverick. One child was Samuel Maverick.

In 1793 Anderson married a second time, to Lydia Maverick, a widow in Pendleton, South Carolina.[2] Her son, Samuel, married Robert's daughter Elizabeth.[3]

After the death of his second wife, he married Mrs. Reese. She was the widow of Dr. Thomas Reese, who was the pastor of Old Stone Church.

Military service

In the Revolutionary War, he joined the Fifth South Carolina Militia. He became a captain in the regiment commanded by his friend Andrew Pickens when they fought Boyd's Loyalists.

Anderson was one of the Patriots who gave their parole to the British as Ninety Six, South Carolina. Many took up arms after the British disregarded their promises.

At the Battle of Cowpens, Anderson was a colonel under Brigadier General Andrew Pickens. Anderson also served under Henry "Light Horse Harry" Lee. He fought in the Battle of Eutaw Springs, in which the British were victorious. Later, his regiment held the line against the British between Augusta, Georgia and Ninety Six.

On the western frontier, he fought with Andrew Pickens against the Cherokees. A treaty signed in 1777 ceded most of the Cherokee lands in the present Anderson, Oconee, and Pickens counties.

After the war, Anderson was promoted to the rank of general in the state militia.[citation needed]

Civilian career

He served in the South Carolina House of Representatives from 1791 to 1794 and from 1801 to 1802 from the Pendleton District. He was an elder of the Old Stone Church. In 1800, he was elector for Thomas Jefferson and Aaron Burr.

He owned 2,100 acres (8 km2) in the current Anderson, Oconee, and Pickens counties including his home, Westville, on the west side of the Seneca River across from Andrew Picken's home, Hopewell.

Death and legacy

He died at his home on January 9, 1813. Due to a flood, they were not able to bury him at Old Stone Church, and he was buried on his estate. During the construction of Lake Hartwell, his body was reinterred at Old Stone Church.

The ghost town of Andersonville, the City of Anderson, and Anderson County were named for him.


  1. ^ "History : Greenville County Sheriff's Office". Retrieved 25 July 2012.
  2. ^ Marks (1989), p. 6.
  3. ^ Marks (1989), p. 9.


  • Louise Ayer Vandiver, Traditions and History of Anderson County, Ruralist Press, Atlanta, GA, 1928.
  • Frank A. Dickson, Journeys into the Past: The Anderson's Region's Heritage, Sponsored by the Anderson County Bicentennial Committee, 1975.
  • Marks, Paula Mitchell (1989), Turn Your Eyes Toward Texas: Pioneers Sam and Mary Maverick, Centennial Series of the Association of Former Students, Texas A&M University, Number 30, College Station, Texas: Texas A&M University Press, ISBN 0-89096-380-0
  • Reynolds, Jr., William R. (2012). Andrew Pickens: South Carolina Patriot in the Revolutionary War. Jefferson NC: McFarland & Company, Inc. ISBN 978-0-7864-6694-8.

External links

  • Rootsweb Robert Anderson's grave.
  • Historical Marker Database Anderson S.C.: The Electric City Historical Marker
Political offices
Preceded by
Lewis Morris
Lieutenant Governor of South Carolina
Succeeded by
John Drayton
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