• 18th century tents are set up in a lane.

    Cowpens

    National Battlefield South Carolina

Frequently Asked Questions

How did the park get its name?
This was a pasturing area for cattle at the time of the battle. There were places like this all over the upcountry of South Carolina. This was a particularly well-known cow pen.

Why were the soldiers this far inland?
There were a lot of loyalists (people loyal to the king of England) in the backcountry. The British were trying to keep the existing loyalists loyal, and the Americans were trying to get more patriot support.

How long did the battle last?
The battle lasted less than an hour.

I thought this was a Civil War battle.
There were more Revolutionary War battles and skirmishes in South Carolina than in any other colony. South Carolina actually had very little Civil War activity.

When is your reenactment?
We do not have reenactments. We do have a living history encampment on the weekend closest to the anniversary of the battle.

How long is the walk?
The self-guided battlefield trail is 1 1/4 miles long. It usually takes 30 - 45 minutes to walk.

Are pets allowed?
Pets are not allowed inside buildings. Pets are allowed on the battlefield trail and the loop road if they are on a leash 6 feet or less.

Do you have camping?
No. However, camping is allowed in some of the nearby state parks.

Where can I picnic?
We have a nice picnic area on the loop road around the perimeter of the battlefield. The picnic shelter may be reserved for the calendar year that we are currently in. For more information on renting the shelter, call (864) 461-2828.

Where can I ride my bicycle?
Bicycles are allowed only on the loop road in the same direction as traffic. Riders must ride single file and should have the appropriate safety gear.

Where can I ride my horse?
Horses are allowed on the nature trail behind the picnic area. Trailers are not allowed in the park. All horses must ride onto and off of the park. For more information and a map, please come by the Visitor Center.

Where can we eat?
We cannot recommend restaurants. However, there are several restaurants in Chesnee (3 miles) and Gaffney (10 miles).

What other historic sites are in the area?
Kings Mountain National Military Park is approximately 35 miles north, near Blacksburg, SC.
Overmountain Victory National Historic Trail begins in Abingdon, Virginia and Sycamore Shoals, Tennessee and goes through the Cowpens National Battlefield, ending at Kings Mountain National Military Park.
Ninety Six National Historic Site is approximately 90 miles south in Ninety Six, SC.
Walnut Grove Plantation is approximately 35 miles south in Woodruff, SC.
Historic Brattonsville is approximately 50 miles east in McConnels, SC.

Did You Know?

camp followers

In the Revolutionary War, some women, known as camp followers, went with their husbands to the battlefields to tend to such chores as cooking, mending, laundry, and nursing the sick and wounded. Sometimes unmarried women performed these duties for a small wage and half rations.