May 10, 1307: Robert the Bruce Victorious at Loudoun Hill
On this day in 1307, Robert the Bruce led a contingent of Scotsmen against the the English forces of Aymer de Valance. The Battle of Loudoun Hill, as it has come to be known, was the first major military victory for Robert the Bruce, and it set the tone for the coming conflicts between the English and the Scots.
Bruce showed his great military skill by scouting the Ayrshire countryside for an effective military position, finally settling upon Loudon Hill. His men dug ditches on either side of the highway, limiting the English forces to only one approach. The choke-point created by the Scots served to neutralize the superior numbers of the English. Bruce deployed his forces from the high ground of the hill and as they descended upon the English, their use of spears reeked havoc on the English forces. As Valance was forced to flee the battlefield, Bruce had gained his first major military victory.