Andersons of Colonial N. Carolina

meant what they said, said what they meant

Bath County musings…

with 5 comments

I’ve been making a case that Tarboro was early on in Bath County… scroll down a few posts to “The Theory” for some background. Traci Thompson has a raised eyebrow at my musings but she is slowly coming around… she is a history librarian in those parts 🙂 If my little theory pans out then James Anderson could be “one of” if not “the” Founder of the town of Tarboro. Back when Bath County was cool it was all about trading with the Indians…

The recent discovery of Blackbeard’s Queen Ann’s Revenge has prompted some historical interest in the old town of Bath:

“Because Bath County was separated from Albemarle County by nearly fifty miles of swampy wilderness –this is one of the least populated and most isolated areas in the state to this day — the settlements had to communicate by water using the sounds and rivers. Bath’s economy was based on the fur trade with the Tuscarora and smaller Amerindian tribes in the region.” p9,

“The dominance of the Indian fur trade and provisions early in the century is illustrated by Thomas Pollock’s outbound cargo to Boston in 1704. It consisted of 244 barrels of pork, deerskins, furs, and leather, plus another shipment primarily of 2690 dressed deerskins and some furs.” p10,

“When Bath became a refugee center during the Tuscarora War, a fort was constructed near the end of the peninsula. At war’s end the ravaged county was desolate, but settlers returned to rebuild their plantations, farms, and homes. Bath experienced a moderate recovery, stimulated by the reincorporation of 1715 and a re-survey. New prominent residents were Governor Charles Eden, Maurice Moore, Edward Moseley, Thomas Pollock and Dr. Edward Travis.Christopher Gale sold his plantation and became a full-time resident. By the next year, new merchants, tradesmen, and artisans were attracted to the town by the establishment of Port Bath, the first port of entry for the colony. p13,

Thomas Pollock did alright for himself… check out his will of 1722:
He could also be ruthless…

Minutes of the Virginia Governor’s Council [Extracts], including correspondence between Edmund Jenings and William Glover
Virginia. Council
September 02, 1707
Volume 01, Pages 667-671

“Information was brought hither that one Collo Pollock of Carolina with about sixty armed men in an hostile manner sett upon the Maherine Indian towne makeing all the Indians that were therein prisoners and so keeping them pent up for two days in a small fort till with the straitness of the place the excessive heat of the weather and their want of Water they were almost famished, threatening further to burn their Cabbins and destroy their Corne if they did not remove from that place and to show that he meant to be as good as his word he pulled down some of their Cabbins and broke and destroyed such poor furniture as the Indians had therein, and to make that Action the more unaccountable (to give it no more name) the said Pollock had the assurance to affirm he had the Queens order for what he did.”

Christopher Gale dabbled in the trade also…

“…I cood wish Bro. Miles were w’th me Just now, for Tomorrow’s light I sett out upon an Indian Voiage, in ord’r to followe a shallop’s load off Indian goods, w’ch I sent away about 2 Months agoe for Cape Fare River, w’ch Voiage wood make him an expert Carolina Coaster, & Inure him soe far to ye Customes & language off ye Heathen, as to make him a well qualify’d Ind. Trader, by w’ch Imploym’t (si adest fortune, & fortune Comes Indubitatus Fortitudo) he may secure for himselfe a Comfortable being in ye world. Iff he comes, he shall not want Imploym’t, butt I wood advice y’u to lett him marry before he comes away, provided he can marry a Fortune that wood encounter ye dangers off ye Atlantick Ocean, one penny in England is 3 w’th us, iff well laid out, & iff he cood butt bring w’th him 2 or 300ll. w’th a wife, I cood putt him in ye way to live as happy as ye day is long. Marriage att ye best is butt a happy or unhappy chance (audaces Fortuna Juvat). All sorts of English goods are here verry valuable, Especially Nails, Carpenters’ Tools, Hows, Axes, all sorts off linings, powder & shott, hatts, stockings & what else is requisite to make a sortable store. ”

Now comes James Anderson in 1723…

Colonial Bertie Co., NC Deed Books 1720-1757 Mary Best Bell Deed Book A

pg. 19. James ANDERSON of Bath County to John GRAY (Capt.) March 3, 1721/22. 400 a. NS Morattock River in Occoneeche Neck. Part of 640 a. surveyed by Coll. William MAULE for William BRASWELL then sold to Matthew CAPPS, and by CAPPS sold to James ANDERSON. Adj. William BOON, John NELLSON. Wit: Patrick MAULE, Mau. MOORE. April 20, 1722. C. GALE, C/C   …hmmm… Christopher Gale is C/C

Maurice Moore from above…

Dec. 1, 1716 – Maurice MOORE, Bath Co., Gent. To Christopher GALE, Bath Co., Esq. – 10 pounds – lot and front, one-half acre in Bath Town, #16, bounded to south on Patrick MAULE’s lot and to the north on half a lot belonging to said Christopher GALE. Wit: Tho. HARDING, Jno. DRINKWATER Acknowledged Jan. Court 1716

Some colonial history of Beaufort County, North Carolina   By Francis Hodges Cooper 1916

Page 186 Oct. 1716 – “Whereas an Act of Assembly made and ratified Jan. 17, 1715 entitled an act appointing a Town on the County of Bath and for the further encouraging the settlement thereof, it is enacted that a resurvey be made of the said Town, and that each lot shall contain half an acre and no more, and every person holding a front lot or lots in the said Town shall purchase the front edging before the same at the rate of 10 shillings each front . . .” Land was formerly conveyed to Col. James MOORE of South Carolina, said James MOORE did not comply to law, therefore, Thomas HARDING and John DRINKWATER, Bath Co., two of Commissioners appointed by said act for sale of said lots and fronts in said Town, to Col. Maurice MOORE, Co. of Albemarle, Gent. 40 shillings – front lot of land in Bath Town (not improved) with front, “in plan or model of said Town now remaining in the office of Beaufort and Hyde Precincts by number 16” bounded to north on the lot of Thomas HARDING and to south on lot of Patrick MAULE and to west on Bay Street, with the front lying on creek side between Bay Street and the creek and parallel to said lot – “provided said Maurice MOORE shall erect and build one habitable house on said lot within one year after above date.” Wit: Gyles SHUTE, Robert REEN Acknowledged Oct. Court 1716

John Gray (bought the property of James Anderson in 1722) by 1736 becomes an Indian Commissioner…

Minutes of the North Carolina Governor’s Council, North Carolina. Council, October 08, 1736 – October 15, 1736, Volume 04, Pages 223-225

Read the petition of Sr Richard Everard Bart in behalf of Dame Susanna Everard Executrix of Sr Richard Everard Bart Deceased setting forth that the Tuskarrora Indians are indebted to the said Susanna ÂŁ203 in Drest Deer Skins and praying that they may be compelled to discharge the same referred to the Indian Commissioners

Ordered that a Commission issue appointing Robert West Esqr—Speirs Jno Gray and Thos Whitmel Gent Commissioners for Indian Affairs

Ordered that for the future the Indian Traders do not presume to trust or give any credit to the Indians and that the aforesaid Commissioners take care to see this Order observed.

 But alas, while the circumstantial evidence is interesting, no  records have surfaced to make the connection of James Anderson of 1723 to this guy in 1758:

The Colonial and State records of North Carolina

Petition from the inspectors and merchants of Tarboro concerning the salary of inspectors Spell, Thomas; Bignall, Robert, ca. 1730-1787; Et Al. 1758  Volume 05, Page 961 [From MSS. Records in Office of Secretary of State.]   North Carolina—Edgcombe County.

To His Excellency Arthur Dobbs Esqr Capt General Governor and Commander In Cheafe in and over the Province afsd; and To His Majestys Honorable Counsell: Mr. Speaker and Gentlemen of the House of Burgises

The Petition of the Inspectors and Marchants of the town of Tarr Burrow In the county afsd Whose names are under written Humbly Sheweth that the Salary that is by Law allowed to each Inspector is not a Suffiant Sum for thare troble and featage as they are at and thare Fore We Humbly Pray that the Salary may be Inlarged so as to Put us on an Equality with the Inspectors at the Town of Halifax and We your Petetioners as In Duty Bound shall ever pray, &c.








 Hey Traci!  the signature mark of James in 1723 was a capital I with a dash in the middle… I wonder what the signature of James in 1758/63 looked like?

Written by anderson1951

February 26, 2012 at 7:54 am

Posted in Uncategorized

5 Responses

Subscribe to comments with RSS.

  1. I declare that…MARC HAS WON THE MAP GAME!! WHOO HOO!! 🙂

    The signature of James would be interesting to know…I bet we could find out…

    Just for fun, I thought I’d mention:

    “James Anderson 26 November 1757 150 acres in Craven County upon the East side of Grindal Creek – a place called the old ford below Francis Nunns survey” – Margaret M. Hofmann, abstractor, Colony of North Carolina, Abstracts of Land Patents, Volume One, 1735-1764 (Weldon, NC: Roanoke News Co., 1982), p. 77, citing patent book 2, 1111, p. 180.

    Grindal (Grindle) Creek is in modern-day Pitt County. Thing is, there are two Grindle/Grindal creeks in Pitt, one in the northern part and one in the southern. Several Andersons show up in both the Beaufort and Craven records early on as mariners. See some of Pitt’s major waterways here:


    Traci Thompson

    February 27, 2012 at 4:06 pm

    • I’ve looked at that Grindle Creek James and suspect he may be from the Perquimans Andersons… see my Page “1723 Tar River”… scroll down a bit…

      I James Anderson of the county of Perquimons in North Carolina being weak of bodey but of sound? mind and perfect memory Thanks be to god for the same but knowing the certainty of Deth and the certainty of the time when I do- make this my last will and testament in form and manner as folows(eth?)-

      first my will is that my just Dets and funeral charges shall be payd by my Executors hear after named-

      I give and bequeath to my son James Anderson five pound in speashe if ever he appear-

      I give and bequeath unto my son John Anderson __? the rest of my Estate both Both (sic) reall and personnell onely my Land That I now Live upon my will is that my son John shall neather sell nor morgage it but if he Dyes without Eshue then my will is that my Land shall go to the next of kin to him-

      Lastly I Do ordain constitute and appoynt my__ __? Robert Skinner _? my son John Anderson ___ ___? my sole Executors ___ ___and set my hand and ___ ___ ___? in the yeir 1741/2

      Witnesses (illegible) James (his mark) Anderson



      February 27, 2012 at 6:13 pm

  2. As an aside… has anyone investigated the Edward Telfair from the list of merchants above? He had a relative in Halifax and apparently this Edward may have went on to become a Governor of Georgia. … was involved with The Articles of Confederation, etc… interesting guy.



    February 27, 2012 at 6:24 pm

  3. Interesting that Telfair shows up. When i was last at the archives, i met a Telfair descendant who had been in touch with the Tarboro library, wanting to donate some info on the family. I can put you in touch with him if you like. He did mention something about ties to Georgia.


    traci thompson

    February 27, 2012 at 9:26 pm

    • I have my hands full just with the Andersons… (and those pesky Pitmans). The side stories of historical figures is fascinating tho’… the Robert Bignall also above has several letters of 1781 during the Rev War where (writing from Tarborough) he is carrying on with trade in arms and supplies to the Patriot Cause. (In one letter he complains the Tar River has dropped to 12 inches and he can’t find wagons to carry the stuff overland and the boats can’t navigate.)

      I haven’t got a handle on the Thomas Spell and Peter Mitchell from the list… they were brothers in law and I suspect Mitchell was an Indian Trader but haven’t followed his trail much…



      February 28, 2012 at 4:25 am

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: