Year
1780
Month Day
October 07

Battle of King’s Mountain

During the American Revolution, Patriot irregulars under Colonel William Campbell defeat Tories under Major Patrick Ferguson at the Battle of King’s Mountain.

Major Ferguson’s Tory force, made up mostly of American Loyalists from South Carolina and elsewhere, was the western wing of General Lord Cornwallis’ North Carolina invasion force. One thousand American frontiersmen under Colonel Campbell of Virginia gathered in the backcountry on the border of the two states to resist Ferguson’s advance. Pursued by the Patriots, Ferguson positioned his Tory force in defense of a rocky, treeless ridge named King’s Mountain. The Patriots charged the hillside multiple times, demonstrating lethal marksmanship against the surrounded Loyalists.

Unwilling to surrender to a “band of banditti,” Ferguson led a suicidal charge down the mountain and was cut down in a hail of bullets. After his death, some of his men tried to surrender, but they were slaughtered in cold blood by the frontiersmen, who were bitter over British excesses in the Carolinas. The Tories suffered 157 killed, 163 wounded, and 698 captured. Colonel Campbell’s force suffered just 28 killed and 60 wounded.

FACT CHECK: We strive for accuracy and fairness. But if you see something that doesn't look right, click here to contact us! HISTORY reviews and updates its content regularly to ensure it is complete and accurate.

ALSO ON THIS DAY

Union and Confederate forces clash at Battle of Darbytown Road

A Confederate attempt to regain ground that had been lost around Richmond, Virginia, is thwarted when Union troops turn back General Robert E. Lee’s assault at the Battle of Darbytown and New Market Roads.  In the summer of 1864, the campaign between Lee and Union General Ulysses ...read more

U.S.-led attack on Afghanistan begins

On October 7, 2001, a U.S.-led coalition begins attacks on Taliban-controlled Afghanistan with an intense bombing campaign by American and British forces. Logistical support was provided by other nations including France, Germany, Australia and Canada and, later, troops were ...read more

A New York judge reverses John Lennon’s deportation order

On October 7, 1975, a New York State Supreme Court judge reverses a deportation order for John Lennon, allowing him to remain legally in his adoptive home of New York City. Protests against the Vietnam War had escalated significantly following the announcement of the Cambodia ...read more

Moving assembly line debuts at Ford factory

For the first time, Henry Ford’s entire Highland Park, Michigan automobile factory is run on a continuously moving assembly line when the chassis–the automobile’s frame–is assembled using the revolutionary industrial technique. A motor and rope pulled the chassis past workers and ...read more

East Germany created

Less than five months after Great Britain, the United States and France established the Federal Republic of Germany in West Germany, the Democratic Republic of Germany is proclaimed within the Soviet occupation zone. Criticized by the West as an un-autonomous Soviet creation, ...read more

Poet Allen Ginsberg reads “Howl” for the first time

Poet Allen Ginsberg reads his poem “Howl” at a poetry reading at Six Gallery in San Francisco. The poem was an immediate success that rocked the Beat literary world and set the tone for confessional poetry of the 1960s and later. Ginsberg was born in 1926 to a high school English ...read more

Sean Connery plays James Bond in “Never Say Never Again”

On October 7, 1983, Sean Connery stars in Never Say Never Again as the British secret service agent James Bond, a role he last played in 1971. The film’s title referenced the fact that the Scottish-born actor had previously remarked that he would never play Agent 007 again. ...read more

Palestinian terrorists hijack an Italian cruise ship

Four Palestinian terrorists board the Italian cruise ship Achille Lauro shortly after it left Alexandria, Egypt, in order to hijack the luxury liner. The well-armed men, who belonged to the Popular Front for the Palestine Liberation Front (PLF), the terrorist wing of the ...read more

Kennedy and Nixon debate Cold War foreign policy

In the second of four televised debates, Democratic presidential nominee John F. Kennedy and Vice President Richard Nixon turn their attention to foreign policy issues. Three Cold War episodes, in particular, engendered spirited confrontations between Kennedy and Nixon. The ...read more

CBS broadcasts the premiere episode of “Route 66″

On October 7, 1960, the first episode of the one-hour television drama "Route 66" airs on CBS. The program had a simple premise: It followed two young men, Buz Murdock (George Maharis) and Tod Stiles (Martin Milner), as they drove across the country in an inherited Corvette ...read more

Japanese execute nearly 100 American POWs on Wake Island

On October 7, 1943, Rear Adm. Shigematsu Sakaibara, commander of the Japanese garrison on the island, orders the execution of 96 Americans POWs, claiming they were trying to make radio contact with U.S. forces. In late December 1941, the Japanese reinforced existing forces on ...read more

Arnold Schwarzenegger becomes California governor

On October 7, 2003, actor Arnold Schwarzenegger is elected governor of California, the most populous state in the nation with the world’s fifth-largest economy. Despite his inexperience, Schwarzenegger came out on top in the 11-week campaign to replace Gray Davis, who had ...read more