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and put the government there to great straits. North Carolina thereupon
Prior to this time the coast, it seems, was divided into two districts for the collection of customs, one being the District of Currituek and the other that of Roanoke. In the course of time the increase of population to the southward and the decrease in water at Currituck and Roanoke Inlets made other Ports of Entry necessary.
In this year, also, was made the first revisal of the acts of Assembly that has come down to us. This revisal left sixty-nine statutes in force, to-wit: “The six confirmed acts," as they were called, six other acts specially excepted from repeal, and fifty-seven other acts, then formally enacted, some new and some old.
In 1716, Governor Eden and Governor Spotswood of Virginia seeing the difficulties in the way of determining the boundary line between the two colonies, agreed upon the compromise line which was finally run in 1728, and is to-day the dividing line between the two States.
In 1718, a change was made in the manner of selecting the members of the Council. Hitherto each Lord Proprietor had appointed a deputy and these deputies composed the Council. From this time, however, the appointment of deputies ceased and the members of the Council were named as such by the joint action of the Proprietors.
In 1719, South Carolina threw off the Proprietary Government and claimed and received the protection of the Crown. She was led to take this step not from any advanced views in regard to government, but because, in the straits to which she had been reduced by the Indian war, the Crown only was able to extend the help necessary to her existence. Appeal after appeal having been made to the confessedly helpless Lords Proprietors, and in vain, the colony sought and found refuge in the strong arms of the King
This action of South Carolina aroused great indignation in the bosoms of the Governor and Council of North Carolina, so they said,
they said, and very naturally, as they were appointees of the Lords Proprietors, and in conscience and truth men might well be excused for not being in haste to get under Royal rule. It is true too, doubtless, that the weaker the government was the better suited it was to the tastes of the people of North Carolina. It mattered not to them whether it was called Royal or Proprietary, for until they took the government into their own hands they knew it only by the burdens it imposed. Whatever protection they enjoyed came from themselves.
About this time, or a little before, were sown the seeds of a dispute as to the boundary line between North and South Carolina, a dispute that did not end until 1815. Its origin was something after this wise: The Lords Proprietors determined to erect a third government in their
province of Carolina with the Savannah river as boundary between it and South Carolina. The proposition to form a new government, with the Savannah river as the northern boundary (substantially what the present State of Georgia is) threatened South Carolina with fatal contraction of territory.
At first the northern part of the province was described as that portion of it lying "north and east of Cape Fear," and the southern part as that part lying "south and west of Cape Fear.” As early, however, as 1665, the county of Craven was described as lying south and west of Cape Roumania, Craven constituting the southern part, Clarendon undoubtedly belonging to the northern part of the province, and for years the Santee river was recognized as the real boundary. The county of Clarendon becoming very soon once more a wilderness, uninhabited save by Indians and beasts, the question of boundary was one of no practical importance. When, however, threatened with the Savannah river as her southern boundary, South Carolina very naturally became keenly alive to the importance of her northern line, and sought at once to fall back northward from the line of Cape Roumania and the Santee river to what she claimed to be the earlier line of Cape Fear and the Cape Fear river,
Certainly with the Savannah river for one boundary and the Santee for the other, South Carolina would indeed have been in a narrow strait, and it was natural for her to make a vigorous fight for a larger share of the province in which she and her northern sister bad lived so long as tenants of the same owner. On the other hand, to have made Cape Fear river the boundary would have been equally hard on North Carolina. In point of fact it never was a boundary, and in this connection it must be borne in mind that while the Cape was known as Cape Fear from the beginning, the river was first known as Charles river, then as Clarendon river, after which it came to be called the Cape Fear river.
It was not until after the purchase of the province by the Crown that anything like the present line was indicated, and then it was done after consultation with the proposed Governors of the two colonies, and doubtless as an equitable compromise between the Santee and Cape Fear lines.
The change in tone of South Carolina toward North Carolina after her transfer to the Crown, was very marked. When she too was a proprietary government she was kindly enough, but immediately she got under royal rule her airs of superiority generally were worthy of the Virginia officials in their most arrogant days. The South Carolina agents in London went so far, in 1720, as to ask that North Carolina be blotted out, one part to be given to Virginia and the other to South Carolina, for the reason that it was the receptacle for all the rogues on the main land in America. In 1722 they were formally instructed by their Legislature to lirge that North Carolina be made a dependency upon South Carolina. See documents of those dates.
But there was some excuse for South Carolina, remembering to what straits she was about to be reduced by the formation of a third government by the Lords Proprietors.
In 1722, Governor Eden died, leaving a reputation tarnished, as many think, by the not groundless suspicion of having been the protector and partner of pirates. The Secretary of the colony, Tobias Knight, who was also a member of the Council, was formally accused of being an associate in crime with the notorious pirate commonly known as “Teach,
the Pirate," or “Bluebeard.” The Governor and Council quite as formally investigated the charges and gravely pronounced him entirely innocent. It was to this scandal that Colonel Moseley referred when he told Governor Eden he could find men to arrest him, but could find none to arrest pirates.
In 1722, Beaufort was made a Port of Entry.
In January, 1724, George Burrington was sworn in as Governor of the colony, and in July, 1725, was removed from office. The reasons for his removal are not given officially, but it was officially suggested by the Lower House of Assembly that it was because he was suspected of a design to transfer North Carolina to the Crown, as South Carolina had been transferred in 1719. His prompt re-appointment by the Crown after the purchase of the colony from the Lords Proprietors would seem to indicate that there might be some truth in the suggestion. But if a tithe of what was sworn to as to his violence, both in speech and action, be true, the wonder is that he got away from the colony alive, and not that a conspiracy was formed to kill him, as he alleged.
Sir Richard Everard succeeded Burrington and continued to act as Governor until Burrington's second appearance on the scene, when he came as a Royal Governor. He fully sustained the character attributed to Burrington for bad language and violent, lawless action. This declaration may seem harsh, but it is submitted that the documents printed in these volumes demand that it be made. It will be borne in mind, too, it is hoped, that Eden, Burrington and Everard, and in fact the government officials generally were, then, not North Carolinians but needy ad-. venturers, who came over here to make their fortunes at the
of the colony—a cormorant brood in that day, at least, not equalled in America.
Inured to danger, and accustomed to meet it unaided, and seeing no strength in the government over them, save that which lay in their own strong arms and brave hearts, the people of North Carolina, as might have been expected, felt but little respect for the Lords Proprietors or their representatives. When the government was in accord with the
people, it was well; when it was not, so much the worse for the government, for the people were stronger than the government.
In 1675, when the colony was only twelve years old, the people turned out their Governor, Colonel Jenkins. How many Governors they turned out before that time we do not know. There were then not more than 1,500 males, of all ages and colors, in the colony.
In 1676, the Lords Proprietors declared that the North Carolinians did not understand their own interests, and would not regard the interests of the Proprietors.
In 1677, 1678 and 1679, Miller and Eastchurch were turned out and the Culpeper Rebellion prevailed.
In 1680, the Lords Proprietors reported to the Crown that since 1676 there had been no lawful Government in North Carolina.
The next unfortunate was Seth Sothel, or Southwell, whom, in 1689, the Assembly formally banished from the colony for one year, and from the government for all time. He was surprised, so the story goes, upon his own plantation and “clap’t into a Logg House” and there kept prisoner until "he renounced the Government and took and subscribed a strange oath.” Now Sothel was not only a Governor, but a maker of Governors, for he was a Lord Proprietor, and as such a chartered absolute master of the soil, if not of the people as well, of Carolina. But for all that, the North Carolinians would not have him, and his brother Lords Proprietors would not attempt even to force him upon them unwillingly.
In 1690, Governor Nicholson reported that the North Carolinians were a very mutinous people.
In 1708, 1709, 1710 and 1711, Glover and Hyde were turned out, and the Cary Rebellion, so-called, prevailed, until suppressed by a military force from Virginia.
In 1710, Governor Spotswood, of Virginia, said the Governor of North Carolina was on so precarious a footing, and his authority so little, that he was forced to submit to others.
In 1711, he said the North Carolinians were so used to turning out their Governors that they thought they had a right to do so,