Monday, May 16, 2016

1670 - Foundation of Charles Town, Carolina

Carolina in 1670

January 3rd, 1670 - General George Monck, 1st Duke of Albemarle and Lord Proprietor of Carolina dies in London at the age of 61. He is buried in Westminster Abbey. His only son Christopher inherits his titles) and properties.

Christopher Monck, 2nd Duke of Albemarle, Earl of Torrington (August 14, 1653 - October 6, 1688) - Member of Parliament and Gentleman of the King’s Chamber, he will die without descendent.

January 25, 1670 - The Council of New York decides to review the case of Marcus Jacobson, a.k.a. " The Long Finn ", condemned last December for rebellion by the Court of Delaware. He has his sentence partly lightened.

He was transferred to prison in New York on December 20 pending the application of his punishment. Captain Rousseau was charged to inform him of the governor and council decision to reduce his sentence retaining only flogging and an obligation to serve during four years on a plantation in Barbados. His departure was scheduled the next day and Captain Rousseau accompanied him to the Fort Albany, a ship bound for the West Indies.

Document appointing Peter Carteret governor of Albemarle
March 10, 1670 - Peter Carteret is appointed as governor of Albemarle. He succeeds Samuel Stephens died in office.

Peter Carteret (1641- ?) - Second son of George Carteret, one of the eight Lords Proprietor of Carolina, he had settled since 1664 in the colony where he had successively served as assistant to the governor, councillor and secretary of the County.
Nevertheless, his life looked more like that of a farmer. He had cleared Colleton Island to establish a plantation but had often come close to starvation. The plagues that struck Albemarle were worth of those of biblical Egypt and himself did not count the lost crops and decimated herds. Hardly appointed governor, he could only admit that "it had pleased God to impose such suffering on the people of the region that they had never, despite the years, enjoyed the fruits of their labor. "

March 15, 1670 - a group of 44 survivors of the Carolina, a ship left from Barbados about six months earlier, reaches the shores of Carolina close to Port Royal. It carries Captain William Sayle, recently appointed governor of the new colony. Aware of the docking difficulties, captain Joseph West decides to sail up to the Ashley River's mouth.

According to a passenger report, being friendly, the Indians showed in bad Spanish the best place to drop anchor.
Spain considered that Carolina formed part of its territories especially as St Augustine, the main Spanish city of North America was not very far. The Edisto Indians were actually hardly pleased to see the English settle permanently but the leader of the coastal neighboring Kiawah tribe who lived a little further north invited the newcomers to settle down among his people, hoping in exchange that they would help him to get rid of the Spaniards and their Westo Indians allies. The crew accepted the offer and sailed up to the region called today West Ashlee.
Charles II ascended the throne of England with the support of the nobility of his country, but lacking financial resources to show his gratitude, he had especially chosen to offer the territories listed in the Heath's Carolana Charter, 1629 to eight of his followers. Many settlers of the Barbados had shown keen interest in the Carolina colonization project, tired of tropical storms, diseases and moisture. The new Lords Proprietor had praised this approach by sending a letter of encouragement to those that they had dubbed the "Barbadian Adventurers".

They would eventually influence the culture of this new colony, by their European feudal tradition, their experience of rice growing and their bias towards African slaves' labor. From 1663, they had sent William Hilton to visit the coasts of Carolina in order to find places to settle down but he had seen nothing conclusive. They had however succeeded in founding a short-lived colony near Cape Fear and sent a boat to explore the Port Royal area. Captain Robert Sanford had even met the Edisto Indians with whom he got friendly, leaving behind Doctor Henry Woodward with the aim of studying the inland and local tribal languages.

In August, 1669, the three ships Carolina, Port Royal and Albemarle left England for Barbados. The third was wrecked in reaching the Caribbean while the two others loaded supplies according to the program planned by the Lord Proprietors. They replaced however the damaged Albemarle by the Three Brothers. Both ships made their way to Carolina but were dispersed by a storm. The Port Royal drifted for six weeks before running aground off the Bahamas. Some of the 44 survivors died before the captain had a new boat built but once completed, it enabled them to reach New Providence and Bermuda where they purchased another ship who was to carry them to Carolina. The Three Brothers reached from her part Virginia on May 23.

William Sayle
William Sayle (? - 1671) - native of Dorset, he had been a captain and privateer, distinguished through the capture of several Spanish ships. He had then been governor of Bermuda between 1640 in 1645 and led the moving of the first Puritans to the Bahamas in October, 1648. These were about 70 to flee Bermuda due to persecutions organized by the Church of England and Presbyterians. Sayle had long served as intermediary between England and Atlantic islands before finding that his actions had no chance to succeed. He had then founded the Company of the Eleutherian Adventurers and completed, not without difficulty, his project to establish in the Bahamas a society based on religious tolerance. Sayle had been in 1662 relieved of his governorship before being called back by the Lords Proprietors of Carolina who hoped, despite his age, that he helps them to set up their government on the Bahamas archipelago, just granted to them by King Charles II.
He was, however, quickly blamed for his deficiencies.

April, 1670 - John Winthrop, Jr. is reelected governor of Connecticut.

April 13, 1670 - Governor of New York Francis Lovelace purchases all of Staten Island to the last Indians still living there.

April, 1670Led by Joseph West, the settlers of Carolina land in a place called Albemarle Point on the Ashlee River where they found a town named Charles Town in honor of the king. Florence O' Sullivan, an Irish soldier is appointed surveyor general of the colony and commander of the militia.

Florence O' Sullivan had certainly glory days on various battlefields but although recommended by Lord Proprietor Peter Colleton, he proved very fast not to be up to the task. It was hoped that his military skills provide to the new colony the way to defend against a Spanish threat but he was a poor land surveyor and his miscalculations would soon generate disputes.

Richard Bellingham (1592-1672)
Governor of Massachusetts
May, 1670 - 78-year-old Richard Bellingham is reelected governor of Massachusetts. The population of the colony reaches at that time 25 000 inhabitants.

The Assembly will pass, during this term, a law providing that the children of slaves are themselves enslaved.
Massachusetts was not conducive to large plantations and property owners had only few slaves usually assigned to housework. They preferred for it the younger, cheaper than grown-ups and more easily raised to specific works. It was not unusual that a settler loads some rum on a ship bound to the Indies and gets along with his captain to swap it for a slave child.

May, 1670 - Nicholas Easton succeeds Dr. John Clarke as lieutenant governor of Rhode Island.

May 12, 1670 - the town of Wallingford, Connecticut, which has so far 126 households, is incorporated.
It was founded three years earlier by a group of 38 settlers after the agreement from the provincial General assembly.

John Lederer's second journey
May 20, 1670 - John Lederer leaves for a second expedition in Virginia hinterland. He is accompanied with Major Harris and Indian guides.

His group went up the James River and reached on June 9 the village of Sapon, on the banks of the Roanoke River. This one belonged to Nahyssan, a tribe which had been in trouble with the "Christians" a decade ago but which reserved a warm welcome for Lederer in exchange for glasswares and trinkets. He collected a lot of information and argued his diplomatic skills to the point that he was offered to marry a young woman of the tribe. He decided, however, to pursue his trip southward along the east side of the mountains in search of a passage to the west. It took him fifteen days to reach Katearas, the capital of Tuscarora. The people immediately showed a strong hostility towards him and he preferred to turn back. He arrived in Jamestown on June 28 after five weeks of exploration.

May 23, 1670 - the Three Brothers reaches the Bay of Charles Town. A dozen passengers left to get water on St Catherine Island off the coast of current Georgia, are missing, captured by Indians allies of the Spaniards. Of the hundreds of migrants left from England and the Barbados, only 148, including three African slaves, arrive alive at Charles Town.

160 Kiawah Indians lived there, depending on hunting and fishing. The soil was fertile and there were few mosquitoes. As for the Spaniards, their fortress of St Augustine being more than 250 miles, they did not pose an immediate danger. The new settlers sent letters to Lord Anthony Ashley Cooper, Earl of Shaftesbury, one of the eight Lords Proprietors that his secretary, the philosopher John Locke, grouped under the name of "Shaftesbury Papers".

May 25, 1670 - after several months of hesitation, Governor of New Jersey Philip Carteret imposes his project of land tax giving rise to the discontent of the owners.
The divorce seems consummated between Carteret and the residents of the colony.

May 29, 1670 - Nathaniel Morton, secretary of the Plymouth colony publishes the list of all the freemen of the jurisdiction.

June 3rd, 1670 - Thomas Prence is re-elected governor of Plymouth. He is also appointed commissioner to the United Colonies together with Josiah Winslow.

A law enacted during his mandate imposed a fine on all those who refused to work in the service of an elected councilor, recalling that this one was not only police chief executive, but had to monitor the affairs of a city including the ethical conduct of its people and was moreover judicial officer.
Another law from that period established that a whale or a big fish stranded on the territory of a city and from which could be extracted oil would be attributed for two thirds to the local government and the rest to the people who discovered it.
It is also from this time that the Indian tribes living on the territory of the colony ceased to be regarded as full nations. They were therefore legally attached to the local government and subjected to the same laws as the settlers. Thus, they were more and more Indians to appear before the courts, for all kinds of offences. They would often suffer from of a real discrimination, given the penalties imposed against them, much higher than for the English.

August 6, 1670 - a storm strikes the Albemarle colony in Carolina, destroying crops and many houses.

All the local economy suffered the vagaries of weather. The fact that cetaceans kept off the coastline compromised in particular the future of Governor Peter Carteret’s company, specialized in the sale of whale oil.

Sunset over the Blue Ridge Mountains
(painting by Jeff Pittman)
August 20, 1670 - John Lederer leaves for his second expedition of the year towards the Blue Ridge Mountains.

Accompanied by colonel Catlet and five Indian guides, he went up the Rappahanock River to the foothills of the mountains but had to return hastily because of a spider bite that got infected.
Lederer concluded from these experiences that it was unthinkable that Pacific Ocean is only after eight or ten days of walking.

August, 1670 – The county court jury of Northampton and Accomack, Virginia considers that, following the death of Anthony Johnson occurred a few months earlier, his property belongs to England, given that being of African descent, he is thus a foreigner.

Anthony Johnson was part of the group of twenty Africans sold as slaves in Jamestown in 1619. He had gained his freedom in 1651 and been granted, at that time, a plot of land he had thrived over the years. He had however preferred to move, with his wife, to Maryland because of harms done to black people in Virginia. When he died, only 50 acres remained from the 250 he had purchased and the court decided to deprive his son of this weak legacy to give it to a “white” farmer.

October, 1670 - The assembly of Virginia passes a law prohibiting Africans and Indians, although they are free, to use white servants.
Another law states that all non-Christian Africans arriving in the colony by boat are considered as slaves for life whereas the law that allowed the vote of freedmen is repealed.

October 26, 1670 - Convicted of the murder of Walter House, Thomas Flounders is hanged in Kingston, Rhode Island.

He had been sentenced to death on July 12, 1670 by the Court of Rhode Island after a trial during which he had admitted having had an argument with House, at a time when many quarrels opposed the settlers of Connecticut to those of Rhode Island. Flounders ‘property was confiscated but Kingston residents got together to financially support his wife and child he left.

Charles Calvert
Governor of Maryland
November, 1670 - after more than year spent in England, Governor Charles Calvert is back in Maryland.

Anxious to find an end to the divisions that prevailed within the Assembly between Catholics and Protestants, he decided to give the right to vote only to the planters who owned more than 50 acres or those whose properties amounted to at least to 40 pounds. Only landowners with at least 1000 acres were also now allowed to access responsibilities. The latter provision perversely gave powers to incompetent people.
Charles Calvert continued, since he became governor, to maintain the privileges granted to his family in the 1631 Royal Charter the almost feudal design of which had not stopped arousing controversy between him and his subjects. He was certainly concerned with the well-being of his colony but equated any opposition with an attack against his personal interests. On the other hand, despite the sharp increase of the Protestant population, he continued to focus his Catholic friends to whom he reserved official duties.

Augustine Herman completed at that time the first official map of Maryland which would be printed in London in 1673.

Map of Carolina

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