Thomas Heyward Jr. - Songwriting Prisoner
Thomas Heyward Jr.
At the onset of Revolution, the Royal Governor of South Carolina fled the state.
Thomas Heyward Jr. was one of the young rebels who helped organize a new government, the First Provincial Congress of South Carolina.
Soon after, he was set to Philadelphia to attend the Continental Congress. It was here he voted for freedom and signed the Declaration of Independence.
Heyward stayed long enough to help craft and sign the Articles of Confederation.
Thomas Heyward Jr. was a Captain in the state militia. In the Battle of Beaufort he was shot while leading his men. He was fortunate to survive this wound.
The following year Heyward was captured when the British seized Charleston.
He spent almost a year as a prisoner of war in Florida. During this time, he wrote God Save The Thirteen States, a parody of God Save The King.
When Heyward was finally release, he took a ship back to Philadelphia to meet his pregnant wife.
Somehow, he fell off the ship and was nearly drowned. Heyward managed to hang on to the rudder until help arrived.
Shortly after making it to Philadelphia, his wife died during childbirth.
Heyward was not the type of man to be kept down. After the war drew to a close he remarried.
Thomas helped found the Agriculture Society of South Carolina. This helped start the growth of new crops in the state (though unfortunately on with use of slave labor).
Finally, he was a delegate at the 1790 South Carolina Constitutional Convention. This document governed the state for over 70 years.
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