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U.S. History/Andrew Balfour - NC Militia

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Question
Andrew Balfour was a COL in the NC Militia.  He was murdered by a band of Tories under David Fanning 10 Mar 1782 in front of his wife and daughter, Tibbie who married John Troy, son of Michael Troy.  As a COL in the NC Militia, what did he do and what troops did he command?  Was he and his troops in any battles?

Answer
Hi Kent,

The Militia in the American Revolution typically did not take an active role in the war unless there was a battle in the immediate area.  Militia were civilians who owned guns and who usually regularly got together for military drill in the case they were needed for something.  This could be if the Continental and British forces moved into their area.  In the summer of 1780, the two armies descended on the area.  The NC Militia participated in this southern campaign.  The largest battle in which they were involved was probably Cowpens in SC.

More commonly, militia were used for what would be police matters today: tracking down and capturing criminals, or putting down any other significant disturbance of the peace.  Patriot Militia would also often kill or threaten known Tories.  Sometimes try to force them to leave the area or cease all Tory advocacy.  Similarly, Tory militia did the same thing to the Patriots, as was the case when Fanning killed Balfour and several other Patriot leaders.

There are incomplete records about the Randolph County Militia members, but here is a list of the men known to belong to the regiment and the battles fought:

http://www.carolana.com/NC/Revolution/nc_randolph_county_regiment.html

Incidentally, although I share a surname with the Troy's of North Carolina, I am not related to that branch of the family as far as I know.  My Troy ancestors came from Ireland in the late 1800s and settled in Philadelphia, PA.

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Michael Troy

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I can answer just about any question on early American History. My specialties are the American Revolution through the Civil War/Reconstruction. I also have greater expertise in matters relating to military, political or legal history.

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I have lectured at George Washington University regarding the Civil War, as well as several elementary school Civil War demonstrations. I was also a member of a Civil War reenactment group for about 10 years.

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http://unlearnedhistory.blogspot.com

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J.D. University of Michigan B.A. George Washington University

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Truman Scholar

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