Andersons of Colonial N. Carolina

meant what they said, said what they meant

James Anderson merchant, Tarr Burrow… sometime after 1754…

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For years I suspected this guy might be the same James Anderson of Occonechee Swamp (modern Halifax County) ca. 1716…discussed elsewhere… now I am simply stumped!  I have no idea who he is?

This old, time ravaged scrap of paper debunks that theory (I think?)… oh well, regroup… rethink… move on.

James A_merchant

“North Carolina Edgecombe County. To His Excellency Arthur Dobbs, Esq Capt General Governor and Commander in Cheafe in and over Province afsd; and To His Majcstys Honorable Council: 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 underwritten Humbly Shew- eth that the Salary that is by law allowed to each Inspector is not a Suffient Sum for thar troble and featage as they are at and thare Fore We Humbly Pray that the Salary may be In- larged so as to Put us on an Equality with the Inspectors at the town of Halifax and We your petitioners as in Duty Bound shall ever pray etc.

Thos. Spell

Peter Mitchell

James Anderson

Robert Bignall

Aquila Sugg,

John Watson,

Edw. Telfair


Traci searched for this document in Raleigh months ago and it appeared to be lost…. I found this online purely by accident.  On the back is “Dobbs 1814” so it may be misplaced in that county?

The document is undated… Governor Arthur Dobbs did not assume office until 1754… so it was after that date.

All the signatures are in different hands so it appears James Anderson was literate and signed his own signature.  I have been curious about that since I’ve thought it possible that the James who first patented land in Occoneechee Neck in 1716 might possibly be this guy later on in life.  This pretty much crushes that theory… but now we know… With all the records I find for this James he must have lived behind the tavern in a horse stall.

Not only was he literate but he had a “practiced” hand, in my opinion, look at his capital “A”… the thing is stylized… almost pretty… the flourish on the “n”… the fancy little underline… downright snazzy penmanship… not sure what that means but it is a bit unusual for scruffy, unrefined North Carolinians…  The long “s” in Anderson… wow, that is classic… I’m impressed.   That lettering looks almost Virginian.  Now some of those fancy pants could write!

I’m beating this dead horse to convince myself that the 1716 James did not just miraculously “teach himself to write” between say, 1727 and 1754ish… the “merchant’s” written signature is just too polished in my opinion… he was “schooled” early on…

James is not quite as fancy as Edward Telfair but that guy went on to be Governor of Georgia later on…  seemed to be a bit full of himself in this instance and couldn’t quite figure out when to stop with all the curly ques once he got started… typical of governors even nowadays… all style and little substance.


William Anderson d.1789  had a survey done in 1752… one of the chain carriers was a James Anderson.  The other CC was Arthur Anderson of whom I have no clue whatsoever… in fact that is the only reference I have ever seen for that name in Edgecombe for this time period.  William did not begin his family until early 1750s so this James Anderson cannot be a son.

Who was this 1754 James Anderson?

What happened to the 1716 James Anderson?

Written by anderson1951

January 29, 2014 at 7:58 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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