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The Blushing Spy of South Carolina #LadiesinDefiance

I have a confession. I blush at the drop of a hat. I can blush if the wind changes direction. Go figure. It’s supposed to be the sign of a strong heart. But it gives me away, whether I’m hiding anything or not. People assume I’m embarrassed or lying about something. Hence, this would be a debilitating trait for a spy to have. Somehow, though, Emily Geiger overcame flaming cheeks to deliver some important intelligence during the Revolutionary War.


Emily was the daughter of Swedish immigrants and ardent patriots. During the Revolutionary War, they did everything they could to further the cause of freedom. Emily’s father, however, couldn’t fight due to some health issues.

When General Nathaniel Greene needed a dispatch sent to General Thomas Sumter, Emily reportedly volunteered her services. The territory between the generals was crawling with British soldiers. The details are, of course, myth and legend, but supposedly she argued a woman, nay, a young girl, would get through much easier than a man because she would not arouse suspicion. Greene agreed and entrusted her with a message for Sumter.

Emily was intercepted by the British, and, when questioned, blushed. Profusely. Naturally, her captors assumed she was hiding something and called for a woman to search her. By the time an elderly British matron arrived, Emily had eaten the entire message. Finger lickin’ good? I hope so.

Unable to pin anything on the girl, they let her go on her way to her uncle’s house and Emily did, indeed, deliver valuable information to Sumter.

I think the moral here is that just because a fair-haired blonde blushes, she isn’t necessarily hiding something. Then again …

Copyright 2016 Heather Blanton

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