john mcwhorter or mcwhirter in revolutionary war woffords iron works
McWhorter Lives and Times

Wofford’s Iron Works

John McWhorter declared in his 1833 pension application that he was in a battle at Woffords (Warfords) Iron Works. It is not easy to determine exactly what engagement he meant, but there was activity in that area several times.

The Sons of the American Revolution, in its National Register in 1901, listed an engagement 14 July 1780 on the Pacolet River, followed by an action at Fort Anderson (Thicketty Fort) 30 July 1780. 8 August 1780 was cited as the date of an engagement at Woffords Iron Works, Cedar Springs, South Carolina. 1

An iron works was the foundry, forge and smith that supplied a community with agricultural implements and horseshoes. During a conflict it was doubly important, because it was where cannon and cannon balls could be cast and cavalry horses shod. 2

In 1773, Joseph Buffington came to Lawson’s Fork on the Pacolet River, establishing an iron works, which he lost to William Wofford a few years later. After the Revolutionary War, in 1778, Wofford sold the iron works to the Berwick brothers.3

Ebenezer Fain said in his pension application, "We marched to Lauren [Lawson’s] Fork near Woffords Iron Works where we had an engagement with the British commanded by Major Dunlap. We were suddenly charged by the British from the right and after a short but severe struggle in which a number were severely wounded by the broadsword...We were compelled to give way. The Regiment after retreating a short distance again rallied and continued the fight. The enemy was finally defeated. Their commander, Major Dunlop(sic) was wounded and taken prisoner. 4

Wofford’s Iron Works was near the Cowpens, where one of the most brilliant battles was fought under General Daniel Morgan. If John McWhorter had been in the Cowpens battle itself, he surely would have remembered and reported it in his pension application.

  1. Sons of the American Revolution, reprinted in the Memphis TN SAR web site, R.A. Clapsadle, editor,
  2. History of Union County, p 73, quoting from Draper, Kings Mountain and its heroes.
  3. Glendale History,
  4. Men of Mark in Georgia, Ebenezer Fain’s pension application, Fain Family Documents, [Google cached page].

Last updated   6/28/2003       Copyright© 2003 by Karen McWhorter Wilhelm