The third definition of “patriot” in the Oxford English Dictionary is “A person actively opposing enemy forces occupying his or her country; a member of a resistance movement, a freedom fighter. Originally used of those who opposed and fought the British in the American War of Independence.”
The term first was used in the U.S. by Benjamin Franklin in a 1773 letter. It referred to people who stood in opposition of those pledged to the British Crown — the Tories aka loyalists.
On Oct. 7, 1780, American patriots prevailed against loyalists in the Carolinas and won their first Southern battle. The Battle of Kings Mountain is a victory not often highlighted today but was a critical win nonetheless. It shows the importance of patriots everywhere persevering in every battle against adversarial forces — even against those born on American soil.
The cable network History documented how a loyalist militia under Maj. Patrick Ferguson, largely made up of South Carolina frontiersmen, was defeated by a patriot militia under Col. William Campbell at the Battle of Kings Mountain in North Carolina near the South Carolina border.