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contains Buckingham, Philadelphia and Chester counties. But to get these bounds a little extended, he pushed his interest still further with his royal highness, and obtained a fresh grant of the three lower counties, called Newcastle, Kent and Sussex, which still remained within the New York patent, and had been luckily left out of the grant of New Jersey. The six counties being thus incorporated, the proprietor dignified the whole with the name of Pennsylvania.
The quakers flocked over to this country in shoals, being averse to go to heaven the same way with the bishops. Amongst them were not a few of good substance, who went vigorously upon every kind of improvement; and thus much I may truly say in their praise, that by diligence and frugality, for which this harmless sect is remarkable, and by having no vices but such as are private, they have in a few years inade Pennsylvania a very fine country. The truth is, they have observed exact justice with all the natives that border upon them; they have purchased all their lands from the Indians; and though they paid but a trifle for them, it has procured them the credit of being more righteous than their neighbours. They have likewise had the prudence to treat them kindly upon all occasions, which has saved them from many wars and massacres wherein the other colonies have been indiscreetly involved. The truth of it is, a people whose principles forbid them to draw the carnal sword, were in the right to give no provocation.
Both the French and Spaniards had, in the name of their respective monarchs, long ago taken possession of that part of the northern continent that now goes by the name of Carolina; but finding it produced neither gold nor silver, as they greedily expected, and meeting such returns from the Indians as their own cruelty and treachery deserved, they totally abandoned it. In this deserted condition that country lay for the space of ninety years, till king Charles II., finding it a derelict, granted it away to the earl of Clarendon and others, by his royal charter, dated March the 24th, 1663. The boundary of that grant towards Virginia was a due west line from Luck island, (the same as Colleton island,) lying in 36 degrees of north latitude, quite to the South sea.
But afterwards sir William Berkley, who was one of the grantees and at that time governor of Virginia, finding a territory of 31 miles in breadth between the inhabited part of Virginia and the above-mentioned boundary of Carolina, advised the lord Clarendon of it. And his lordship had interest enough with the king to obtain a second patent to include it, dated June the 30th, 1665. This last grant describes the bounds between Virginia and Carolina in these words: "To run from the north end of Coratuck inlet, due west to Weyanoke creek, lying within or about the degree of thirty-six and thirty minutes of northern latitude, and from thence west, in a direct line, as far as the South sea.” Without question, this boundary was well known at the time the charter was granted, but in a long course of years Weyanoke creek lost its name, so that it became a controversy where it lay. Some ancient persons in Virginia affirmed it was the same with Wicocon, and others again in Carolina were as positive it was Nottoway river.
In the mean time, the people on the frontiers entered for land, and took out patents by guess, either from the king or the lords proprietors. But the crown was like to be the loser by this uncertainty, because the terms both of taking up and seating land were easier much in Carolina. The yearly taxes to the public were likewise there less burthensome, which laid Virginia under a plain disadvantage.
This consideration put that government upon entering into measures with North Carolina, to terminate the dispute, and settle a certain boundary between the two colonies. All the difficulty was, to find out which was truly Weyanoke creek. The difference was too considerable to be given up by either side, there being a territory of fifteen miles betwixt the two streams in controversy. However, till that matter could be adjusted, it was agreed on both sides, that no lands at all should be granted within the disputed bounds. Virginia observed this agreement punctually, but I am sorry I cannot say the same of North Carolina. The great officers of that province were loath to lose the fees accruing from the grants of land, and so private interest got the better of public spirit; and I wish that were the only place in the world where such politics are fashionable.
All the steps that were taken afterwards in that affair, will best appear by the report of the Virginia commissioners, recited in the order of council given at St. James', March the 1st, 1710, set down in the appendix.
Note.We have observed several errors in this paper, relating to the first settlement of our State, and some other matters, which however we must leave the reader to correct for himself :-as he may very easily by referring to the article entitled “ The Limits of Virginia under the Charters of King James the First," in our first volume, p. 12; or by looking into Smith, or Stith's History of Virginia.-ED.
AN EXCURSION INTO THE TERRITORY AFTER
WARDS CALLED NORTH CAROLINA, IN 1654.
PETERSBURG, Dec. 29, 1851. Dear Sir,- I send you the following article which I have taken from “ Anderson's History of the Colonial Church” (a new work lately published in London, of which I have imported a copythe only one, I suppose, as yet in our State :) and which I think will interest some of your readers.
During Sir Wm. Berkley's administration, and the Commonwealth of England, several explorations, public and private, were made into the terra incognita of North Carolina. The accounts of these, in general, are incidental and obscure, but Mr. Anderson has brought to light a locument, found in Thurloe's State Papers, giving a particular detail of the principal of these enterprises, and one which I believe was before this utterly unknown, at least on this side of the Atlantic. This document is a letter dated May 8th, 1654, addressed by Francis Yeardly to John Ferrar, at Little Gidding in Huntingdonshire. This Francis Yeardley was a son of Sir George Yeardley, sometime Governor of Virginia, and Lady Tenperance his wife, and was born in Virginia. John Ferrar to whom this letter was addressed, appears to have been elder brother to Nicholas Ferrar, whose name is honorably connected with the early annals of Virginia, as a member of the Virginia Company and of the House of Commons. After describing the country of South Virginia, or Carolina, "as a most fertile, gallant, rich soil, flourishing in all the abundance of nature, espe
cially in the rich mulberry and vine, a serene air and temperate clime, and experimentally rich in precious minerals,” he relates the story of a young man engaged in the beaver trade, who having been separated from his own sloop, had obtained a small boat and provisions from Yeardley, and gone with his party to Roanoke, at which island he hoped to find his vessel. He there fell in with a hunting party of Indians, and persuaded them and some of the other tribes ; both in the island and the main-land, to come and make peace with the English. In consideration of the assistance that he had received from Yeardley, the young man brought some of these Indians with “ the great man" or emperor" of Roanoke, to Yeardley's house. Where Yeardley's house was we are not told, only it appears that a boat could go from his residence to Roanoke, a fact however of but little avail in our endeavor to discover his locus in quo. The young man and his party of North Carolina Indians passed a week under Yeardley's roof. While there "the great man" seeing the children of Yeardley read and write, asked him whether he would take his only son and teach him likewise, "to speak out of the book, and make a writing." Yeardley assured him that he would; and the Indian chief upon his departure,-expressing his strong desire to serve the God of the Englishman, and his hope that his child might be brought up in the knowledge of the same,-promised to bring him again to Yeardley“ in four moons.” Meanwhile Yeardley had been called away to Maryland; and the English inhabitants of the settlementsuspecting from the frequent visits and enquiries of the Indian, that Yeardley was carrying on some scheme for his own private advantage, treated the poor chief with great harshness. Upon one occasion when Yeardley's wife had brought him to church, "some over busy justices of the
" place,” it is said, “after sermon threatened to whip him,