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This article is from the Encyclopedia of North Carolina edited by William S. Powell. Copyright © 2006 by the University of North Carolina Press. Used by permission of the publisher. For personal use and not for further distribution. Please submit permission requests for other use directly to the publisher.


by William S. Powell, 2006

Outlyers were people with Loyalist, or Tory, sympathies on the eve of the American Revolution who hid in the countryside to avoid being impressed into the Patriot ranks. The Moravians noted that living along the Yadkin River were "many who sided with the King [and] were driven from house and home by persecution." They asserted that these individuals were "the first Outlyers, as they were later called." In passing through Salem some of them, when questioned, replied that they "were on their way to join the King's Standard and do their duty."

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