About Robert Anderson
Robert Anderson (1741 – 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.
He was born on November 15, 1741 in Augusta County, Virginia. His parents were John and Jane Anderson who had immigrated from Ireland. Before moving to Virginia, they had lived in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
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 (1866-1810) married Robert Maxwell (1853-1797), 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.
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. Her son, Samuel, married Robert's daughter Elizabeth.
After the death of his second wife, he married Mrs. Reece. She was the widow of Dr. Thomas Reece, who was the pastor of Old Stone Church.
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.
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.