I don't see that anyone replied to your message from 2007 questioning Peter Costner's status as a Tory. Most "facts" about him appear to be copied from these oral histories published 1903, 1915 and circa 1938:
Alfred Nixon, “The Old Families of Lincoln,” in The Lincoln Journal [newspaper] issue dated 26 June 1903;
Laban Miles Hoffman, Our Kin (Lincolnton, Lincoln County, N.C: 1915);
Elizabeth Hoyle Rucker, The Genealogy of Pieter Heyl and His Descendants, 1100-1936 (Shelby, N.C.: Z. J. Thompson and Others, c1938).
My research in Lincoln County court minutes and estates papers confirms that Peter Costner's assets were confiscated (1782 county court item) and auctioned along with property confiscated from Tories. Eventually (1783) the General Assembly enacted a law that confiscated property or proceeds from auctions were to be returned to the original owners, and this was done to the extent possible.
I have been unable to document the circumstances of Peter's death.
Peter Costner did serve militia duty as was required by all eligible men, and he appears on an early roster of Captain Moses Moore's company. The roster is undated, but appears to pre-date the 1769 formation of Tryon County from Mecklenburg County, so it is valid military service although not Revolutionary War service. There is a voucher at the North Carolina State Archives indicating that Peter Costner contributed clothing valued at £4.6.10 to the Revolutionary War troops.
The name of Peter's wife in the oral histories is given as Mary Magdalena Dellinger. I have been unable to document her full name or her maiden name, but she appears as "Molly" in a deed she and Peter executed in 1774 and she appears as "Mary" in county court minutes and in Peter's estates papers. North Carolina Dellinger families are my primary research focus, so I have looked pretty carefully for documentation of the name of Peter Costner's wife.
Hope this helps you a bit.
May 2007, Hershel Parker wrote:
I have seen several places that Peter Costner, who was born 1737 in Germany and who reportedly died at Ramsour's Mill in NC in June 1780, was fighting as a Tory when he was killed. The trouble is that some of these sources make the assertion that Peter was a Tory then go on to quote a section about Peter Carpenter (that is, Peter Zimmerman). These sources clearly have two men confused. (Peter Costner's wife was a Dellinger and a Zimmerman.) Did the word that Peter Costner was a Tory start with Elizabeth Hoyle Rucker's 1938 THE GENEALOGY OF PEITER HEYL? If so, I would love to see evidence. I hope I don't offend anyone by saying she seems to be a flakehead. Can anyone point me to documentary evidence that Peter Costner was fighting as a Tory. His brother Jacob, who died the year before, had been on the Colonists's side. I will accept Peter as being loyal to his German King of England, but I want to see the evidence. Help! (My mother was Martha Izora Costner.)