241st anniversary of Battle of Shallow Ford to be observed

Local historians and the public will observe the 241st anniversary of the 1780 American Revolutionary Battle of Shallow Ford on Saturday, October 9, 2021, in the historic village of Huntsville in Yadkin County.

At 9:30 a.m. at Huntsville Baptist Church Fellowship Hall, 4901 Courtney-Huntsville Road, Yadkinville, the Yadkin County Historical Society will sponsor its annual seminar to document Patriots and Loyalists on both sides of the battle. Joe Frances, from Texas, will attend. Frances is a descendant of Patriot Captain Henry Francis, Sr., the only Patriot killed in the battle. Frances has compiled a book about Capt. Francis and his family. The late Joe Wooten of East Bend will be remembered. Joe Wooten was descended from Loyalist Capt. William Lakey, who resided in the Baltimore community of what is now Yadkin County. Lakey was mortally wounded in the battle, where about 12 other Loyalists were killed.

The seminar and Ann Brownlee of Salisbury have documented about 60 of the estimated 600 participants in the battle, which the Patriots won. As a result, local Loyalists did not gather in large numbers again in the area.

At 11 a.m. at historic Huntsville Methodist Church, off Farmington Road, on Mount Sinai Drive, Yadkinville, Fred Learned and the Bethabara Chapter of the Sons of the American Revolution will lead the annual observance of the battle. The ceremony will include a wreath-laying ceremony.

At noon at the Battle Branch Café, 2505 Farmington Road, Yadkinville, lunch will be on your own.

At 1 p.m., weather permitting, the group will park on 4021 Mulberry Fields Road and walk to the battlefield. Everyone must sign a liability waiver, since the battlefield is on private property, which is part of a hunting preserve.

After the walk, weather permitting, the group will park on the driveway at 5336 Courtney-Huntsville Road, Yadkinville, , and walk down the Great Wagon Road to the actual Shallow Ford crossing on the Yadkin River. This walk will also be on private property, with the owners giving permission for this special event.

These events are free and open to the public, but children under 12 will need to be accompanied by their parents and pets on a leash. Participants will walk to the from the battlefield and to and from the river at their own risk. Handwashing, social distancing, and mask wearing are expected of every participant to prevent the spread of the delta variant of the COVID-19 virus.

For more information, call or text Andrew Mackie at 336-428-8471 or andrewmackie@yadtel.net.