GEORGIA LINE. The Georgia Line was unique within the Continental Army because the small population base of the state required that a large proportion of its recruiting be conducted outside the territorial boundaries of Georgia. The Line originated with the request by the Continental Congress on 4 November 1775 to raise a single Continental regiment that would be particularly responsible for defense of the Florida border and the seacoast, and would keep watch on the frontier. The Provincial Congress began to form the Line on 20 January 1776, but by the summer it began to request permission to recruit additional regiments in other states. Congress approved two additional regiments on 2 July, specifying that one should be armed with rifles. On the 24th of that month, Congress also approved the transfer to the Continental army of Georgia's four troops of horse and their expansion into a regiment of rangers who could serve on foot or mounted as the situation demanded. Congress added a final regiment on 1 February 1777.
Of the five formations in the Line, the First Georgia Regiment and the Georgia Regiment of Horse Rangers were recruited in the state; the Second Georgia Regiment in Virginia; the Third Georgia Regiment in North Carolina; and the Fifth Georgia Regiment in Pennsylvania. All served exclusively in the south, and all were captured at Charleston on 12 May 1780. All but the First were officially disbanded on 1 January 1781. The remaining unit began reorganizing on 1 January 1783, after the British left Savannah, to become the three-company Georgia Battalion. It disbanded on 15 November 1783.
Davis, Robert S. Jr. Georgia Citizens and Soldiers of the American Revolution. Greenville, S.C.: Southern Historical Press, 1979.
Jones, Charles Colcock. The Life and Services of Honorable Major General Samuel Elbert of Georgia. Cambridge, Mass.: Riverside Press, 1887.
Knight, Lucian Lamar, comp. Georgia's Roster of the Revolution, Containing a List of the State's Defenders; Officers and Men; Soldiers and Sailors; Partisans and Regulars; Whether Enlisted from Georgia or Settled in Georgia after the Close of Hostilities. Atlanta: Index Printing Co., 1920.
McCall, Eltie Tidwell. Roster of Revolutionary Soldiers in Georgia and Other States. 3 vols. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1968–1969.