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North Carolina 
Historical Review 

Issued Quarterly 

Volume XXXII Numbers 1-4 


Published By 


Corner of Salisbury and Edenton Streets 

Raleigh, N. C. 


Published by the State Department of Archives and History 
Raleigh, N. C. 

Christopher Crittenden, Editor 
David LeRoy Corbitt, Managing Editor 


Walter Clinton Jackson Hugh Talmadge Lefler 

Frontis Withers Johnston Douglas LeTell Rights 

George Myers Stephens 


McDaniel Lewis, Chairman 

Gertrude Sprague Carraway Josh L. Horne 

Fletcher M. Green William Thomas Laprade 

Clarence W. Griffin Mrs. Sadie Smathers Patton 

Christopher Crittenden, Director 

This review was' e^toblisked m January. 192 J-,, as a medmm of publica- 
tion and discussion of history : pi{ North Carolina. It is ismed to other 
institutions by exchangej but to the- general public by subscription only. 
The regular price is $2.00 per ytar. Members of the State Literary and 
Historical Association, ' for whic% the annual dues are $3.00, receive this 
publication without further payment. Back numbers may be procured at 
the regular price of $2.00 per volume, or $.50 per number. 

The North Carolina 
Historical Review 




NORTH CAROLINA, 1765-1776 1 

Paul Conkin 



William S. Hoffmann 



Max L. Heyman 


SOUTH CAROLINA, 1850-1860 81 

Margaret Burr DesCramps 



Francis B. Dedmond 

A "WELL-WILLER," 1649 .... 102 

Hugh Talmage Lefler 


Powell's The Carolina Charter of 1663— By William D. 
Overman ; McCain's The County Court in North Caro- 
lina before 1750 — By Rex Beach ; Preslar's A History 
of Catawba County — By Henry S. Stroupe; Spence's 
The Presbyterian Congregation on Rocky River — By E. 
Clinton Gardner; Draper's King's Mountain and Its 
Heroes: History of the Battle of King's Mountain, — By 
William B. Hesseltine; Oliphant's, Odell's and 



iv Contents 

Eaves's The Letters of William Gilmore Simms: Vol- 
ume III — By H. G. Kinchloe; Lanning's The St 
Augustine Expedition of 1740: A Report to the South 
Carolina General Assembly — By Rembert W. Patrick ; 
Chitty's Reconstruction at Sewannee — By PORTER 
Williams, Jr.; Jahn's Tobacco Dictionary — By 
Nannie M. Tilley ; Lord's The Fremantle Diary — By 
Herbert W. Hill; Simkins's A History of the South 
— By Frontis W. Johnson; de Grummond's Caracas 
Diary — By Capus M. Waynick; Beale's Charles A. 
Beard: An Appraisal — By Fletcher M. Green. 


NUMBER 2, APRIL, 1955 

1775-1789 151 

William Frank Zornow 


Margaret Burr DesChamps 



Christopher Crittenden 


HISTORICAL REVIEW, 1924-1953 174 

Paul Murray 



Harry L. Golden 


Robert Mason 


BOOKS 1953-1954 225 

Leonard B. Hurley 

Contents v 



Louis B. Wright 

Mary Lindsay Thornton 


Peckham's The Discovery of New Britain — By William 
S. Powell ; Brooks's Selected Addresses of a Southern 
Lawyer — By Jason B. Deyton; Noblin's The Grange 
in North Carolina, 1929-19 5 J,. — By Haitung King and 
Jack W. Van Derhoof; Johnson's and Holloman's 
The Story of Kinston and Lenoir County — By D. J. 
Whitener; Mathis's The Lost Citadel — By Richard 
Walser; Mouzon's Privateers of Charleston in the 
War of 1812 — By Beth Crabtree; Hesseltine's Dr. 
J, G. M. Ramsey: Autobiography and Letters — By 
Robert F. Durden; Davis's Jeffersonian American 
Notes on the United States of America — By D. H. 
Gilpatrick; Todd's Confederate Finance — By C. K. 
Brown ; Park's General Kirby Smith, C. S. A. — By Jay 
Luvaas ; Fishwick's General Lee's Photographer — By 
J. Walter Coleman; Harwell's Stonewall Jackson 
and the Old Stonewall Brigade — By BURKE DAVIS ; 
Jacobs's Indians of the Southern Colonial Frontier: 
The Edmond Atkin Report and Plan of 1775 — By 
Gaston Litton; Davis's and Hogan's The Barber of 
Natchez — By William D. McCain; Freund's Gustav 
DreseVs Houston Journal — By James A. Tinsley; 
Kilman's and Wright's Hugh Roy Cullen: A Story of 
American Opportunity — By Nannie M. Tilley; 
Cowdrey's American Academy of Fine Arts and 
American Art Union — By Ben F. Williams. 


NUMBER 3, JULY, 1955 


Houston G. Jones 


NORTH CAROLINA, 1877-1894 346 

Frenise A. Logan 

vi Contents 


David H. Corkran 



Noble E. Cunningham, Jr. 


JAMES A. PEIFER, 1861-1865 385 

George D. Harmon 


Jay B. Hubbell 


Harden's Tar Heel Ghosts — By Paul Murray ; Smith's 
and Smith's The History of Trinity Parish, Scotland 
Neck, [and] Edgecombe Parish, Halifax County — By 
William S. Powell; Rubin's Thomas Wolfe: The 
Weather of His Youth — By George W. McCoy; 
Lambie's From Mine to Market: The History of Coal 
Transportation on the Norfolk and Western Railway — 
By Charles E. Landon; Morgan's Justice William 
Johnson, the First Dissenter; The Career and Constitu- 
tional Philosophy of a Jeffersonian Judge— By C. E. 
Cauthen ; Easterby's The Colonial Records of South 
Carolina. The Journal of the Commons House of Assem~ 
bly, September 14, 17 42- January 27, 1744 — By Henry S. 
Stroupe ; Cox's Glimpse of Glory, George Mason of Gun- 
ston Hall — By Elizabeth W. Wilborn ; Wilson's The 
Tinkling Spring, Headwater of Freedom. A Study of 
the Church and Her People — By Thomas H. Spence, 
Jr.; Wiley's Rebel Private, Front and Rear — By 
Richard D. Younger ; Eaton's A History of the South- 
ern Confederacy — By Philip M. Rice ; Anderson's 
Brokenburn, The Journal of Kate Stone, 1861-1868 — 
By C. H. Hamlin ; Douglass's Rebels and Democrats — 
By Clara G. Roe; Bower's Making Democracy a Re- 
ality. Jefferson, Jackson and Polk — By J. G. DE Roulhac 
Hamilton; Catton's American Heritage — By C. W. 
Tebeau; Vail's Knickerbocker Birthday: A Sesqui- 
Centennial History of the New-York Historical Society, 
1804-1954 — By Howard Braverman; Carter's The 

Contents vii 

Territorial Papers of the United States. Volume XX. 
The Territory of Arkansas, 1825-1829 — By Paul M. 




Wesley H. Wallace 



Houston G. Jones 

INVESTOR, 1880-1910 512 

Alfred P. Tischendorf 


George C. Osborn 

PEIFER, 1861-1865 544 

George D. Harmon 


Robinson's The North Carolina Guide — By Weymouth 
T. Jordan; Fries's and Rights's The Records of the 
Moravians in North Carolina, Volume VIII, 1823-1837 — 
By S. Walter Martin ; Shanks's The Papers of Willie 
Person Mangum, Volume IV, 1844-1846 — By Charles 
Grier Sellers, Jr.; Henley's The Home Place — By 
Rosser H. Taylor ; Wellman's Dead and Gone, Classic 
Crimes of North Carolina — By Beth G. Crabtree; 
Masterson's William Blount — By LeRoy P. Graf; 
Gilmer's The Memoirs of Emma Prather Gilmer — By 
D. L. Corbitt; Stoney's The Dulles Family in South 

viii Contents 

Carolina — By Elizabeth W. Wilborn ; Hubbeli/s The 
South in American Literature, 1607-1900 — By Louise 
Greer ; Wiley's Fourteen Hundred and 91 Days in the 
Confederate Army — By Beth G. Crabtree; Davis's 
They Called Him Stonewall: A Life of Lt. General T. J. 
Jackson, C. S. A. — By Stuart Noblin; Williams's 
P. G. T. Beauregard: Napoleon in Gray — By Jay 
Luvaas; Coulter's Wormsloe: Two Centuries of a 
Georgia Family — By Fletcher M. Green ; Miers's The 
Web of Victory: Grant at Vicksburg — By LeRoy H. 
Fischer; and Dalzell's Benefit of Clergy in America 
and Related Matters — By John R. Jordan, Jr. 


The North Carolina 
Historical Review 

Volume XXXII January, 1955 Number 1 


By Paul Conkin 

The near myth about religious freedom has given an at- 
tractive halo to the popular conception of American colonial 
history, although such freedom, had it existed, would have 
been almost inexplicable. Most of the immigrants to America 
brought with them the current European ideas of a state 
church. Puritans in New England and Anglicans in North 
Carolina alike desired a privileged legal status for their re- 
ligion. In many of the colonies, and particularly in North 
Carolina, liberalizing influences tended to change the form 
of the established religion from that found in Europe. In 
North Carolina religious toleration, which was initially of- 
fered as an inducement to settlement, and the almost com- 
plete religious freedom found on the unassimilated and con- 
stantly retreating frontier left a heritage of local religious 
independence which was hardly reconcilable with a strong 
establishment. 1 In the period from 1765 to 1776 many people 
in North Carolina, both those who were for and those against 
the English political rule, persistently resisted the efforts of 
the royal authorities, the Anglican clergy, and sometimes the 
local officials to secure an effective church establishment 
of the English type. Because it paralleled a most important 
period of political unrest and because it represents the climax 
of one of the several state-wide struggles for religious free- 
dom, this religious discontent reveals a significant phase in 
the development of the American mind and the institutions 
which are its concrete manifestations. 

1 Evarts B. Greene, Religion and the State (New York, New York 
University Press, 1941), 47-73. 


2 The North Carolina Historical Review 

The Episcopal Church was always, or at least nominally, 
the official religion of colonial North Carolina, although the 
Anglican clergy had no regular and certain establishment 
until the Vestry and Orthodox Clergy Acts of 1765. 2 Though 
the English Church was recognized as the legal or state 
church in the early proprietary charters, the proprietors 
were given permission to, and did, grant freedom of con- 
science. 3 Several vestry acts were passed in the colony, the 
first in 1701, but there is little evidence that they were ever 
strictly enforced. After the arrival of the first royal governor 
in 1730 with instructions to secure an adequate religious 
establishment, it was eleven years before an apathetic colo- 
nial Assembly passed a vestry act. This law proved inade- 
quate to the purposes of the clergy and the Crown, and a 
more effective act was passed in 1754. When this act was 
disallowed by the Crown in 1759 because it gave too much 
power to the local vestry, a five year legislative struggle en- 
sued before the Assembly was persuaded to pass a vestry 
law that met the demands of the English Government. 

While in 1759 there was a common sentiment in North 
Carolina that the Protestant religion should be legally estab- 
lished, there was a wide difference of opinion as to the form 
the Establishment should take. The source of the legislative 
struggles after 1759, as well as much of the later religious 
dissention, was the Crown's insistence on a stronger estab- 
lishment than that desired by either the dissenters or Angli- 
cans. The Crown wanted a centralized ecclesiastical system 
which could be strictly enforced by the colonial governor. 
The dissenters wanted to retain almost complete religious 
freedom within an establishment that would do little more 
than definitely exclude Catholics. The Anglicans desired the 
establishment of their own church, yet at the same time, 
wanted to retain a firm local control over their own ecclesi- 
astical affairs. The various vestry acts passed between 1754 

2 William L. Saunders, editor, The Colonial Records of North Carolina 
(Raleigh: Josephus Daniels, 1890), VII, 490. Hereafter cited as Saunders, 
Colonial Records. 

8 Stephen B. Weeks, The Religious Development in the Province of North 
Carolina (John Hopkins University Studies in Historical and Political 
Science, Tenth Series, Baltimore, 1892), 14w. 

The Church Establishment 3 

and 1765 exhibited both the latitudinarian ideas of the dis- 
senters and the independence of the Anglicans. 

The Vestry Act of 1754 left the right of presentation of 
clergymen in the hands of the local vestry. This situation 
was unsatisfactory to Governor Dobbs who, since it merited 
the disapproval of the Bishop of London, secured its dis- 
allowance in 1759. 4 The problem of presentation, more than 
any other issue, created a division of interests between the 
Crown and staunch Anglicans. According to English prac- 
tice, the Crown had the authority to induct, or appoint, 
ministers into parishes, although in practice always on the 
advice of the church officials. In North Carolina the general 
practice had been for the local vestry to hire its own minister, 
if one were available. In the absence of an American bishop, 
the governor was the supreme representative of both the 
Crown and the Church and was ready to claim his preroga- 
tive and induct ministers into parishes as he wished. Until 
the Revolution this problem of presentation or induction 
remained a source of friction. 

When the fate of the Vestry Act of 1754 was known in 
North Carolina, Dobbs asked for a new act, this time giving 
the Crown its right of presentation. The Assembly expressed 
its official sorrow that the last act had met with royal dis- 
approval, complained of its lack of representative in London 
to explain the peculiar circumstances of the colony, and 
promptly passed twin church laws, a Vestry and an Orthodox 
Clergy Act, which were even more obnoxious to the Crown 
than the act of 1754. 5 Not only was the right of presentation 
definitely retained in the vestry, but also other unsatisfactory 
conditions were affixed. In keeping with the desire of the 
dissenters for a lax establishment, these acts required that 
a prospective vestryman take an oath that he would not 
oppose, instead of the usual conform to, the doctrine and 
discipline of the Church of England. The Bishop of London 
avowed that this oath could be taken by a Jew or pagan. 6 
Furthermore, the acts excluded the minister from member- 

4 Saunders, Colonial Records, VI, 15-16. 
6 Saunders, Colonial Records, VI, 139. 
•Saunders, Colonial Records, VI, 714-716. 

4 The North Carolina Historical Review 

ship in the vestry, contrary to English church practice. 7 The 
men of North Carolina had already found it advantageous to 
discuss their minister's salary and conduct without his dis- 
turbing and embarrassing presence. Finally, if a minister 
were immoral or committed a crime, he had to face trial 
in the local or secular court instead of in an English ecclesi- 
astical court. 8 Needless to say, these vestry laws of 1760 were 
disallowed. 9 

In 1762 the Assembly passed two more church laws, each 
retaining the same objectionable features as the last ones. 
Governor Dobbs immediately vetoed the Vestry Act, but 
reluctantly approved the Orthodox Clergy Act in order that 
the ministers might have a salary. At last, in the legislative 
sessions of 1764-65, Governor Dobbs, ill, tired, and already 
planning to relinquish his job to William Tryon, succeeded in 
pushing through the Assembly two church laws which satis- 
fied both him and the Lord Bishop of London. These remain- 
ed in operation until the Revolution. Perhaps significantly, 
the first of these laws, the Vestry Act of 1764, was passed by 
an Assembly greatly dwarfed by the absence of all but four 
of the ordinarily recalcitrant northern members. 10 

The Vestry Act of 1764 provided for the support of the 
clergy, for education, and for poor relief. On every third 
Easter Monday twelve vestrymen were to be elected in each 
parish by the qualified voters. Each year before November 1 
the sheriff was to collect a poll tax of not more than ten shil- 
lings from each taxable to support the Parish. If he could 
not collect the tax in a period of five days, he was empowered 
to sell a compensatory amount of the goods and chattels of 
the defaulting person. The vestry was liable for all damages 
to an underpaid minister in accordance with the fees and 
salary set by law. 11 Most important in later controversies, the 
act provided that any dissenter, and later by amendment any 

7 Saunders, Colonial Records, VI, 720-722. 

8 Saunders, Colonial Records, VI, 714-716. 

9 Saunders, Colonial Records, VI, 723. 

10 Saunders, Colonial Records, VI, 1035. 

11 Walter Clark, editor, The State Records of North Carolina (Winston, 
M. I. and J. C. Stewart, 1895-1906), 106-107. Hereafter cited as Clark, 
State Records. 

The Church Establishment 5 

one at all, who refused to qualify when elected a vestryman 
was subject to a fine of three pounds. 12 

The Orthodox Clergy Act of 1765 provided the parish 
minister a salary of £133.6.8 proclamation money, and a 
glebe of 300 acres or a compensating £20 extra salary. He 
was to receive twenty shillings for a marriage by license, 
five shillings for a marriage by banns, and forty shillings for 
a funeral. 13 Although complete religious jurisdiction was 
given to the Bishop of London, the governor was empowered 
to suspend an indicted minister while awaiting the verdict 
of an English ecclesiastical court. The minister could preach 
out of his parish only with the consent of his vestry. Most 
significant, the right of presentation was not mentioned. 14 
As a result, both the governor and the Bishop of London 
interpreted the act as giving the right to the crown by im- 
plication. 15 With these two acts, North Carolina now had as 
strong a legal establishment as any other colony. 

Unfortunately for the Establishment, Governor Dobbs 
left the Church little more than two strong vestry acts in 
1765, for the church was, if anything, weaker than it had 
been in at least a decade. There were only six ministers to 
serve twenty-nine county-wide vestries in a colony with 
a white population of about 100,000; 16 of these six ministers 
only four were doing good work. The lack of ministers is 
revealed by the fact that when Governor Dobbs died unex- 
pectedly in 1765 he had to be buried without benefit of 
clergy in southerly Brunswick County. In the whole colony 
there were only ten Anglican church buildings, with a few 
outlying chapels. 17 On the credit side, a few of the counties 
had functioning vestries, which were helping to support the 
clergy. The church was also strengthened by aid from the 
Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in Foreign Parts 18 
which sponsored most of the ministers as missionaries. 

"Clark, State Records, 759-760. 

"Clark, State Records, 583-585. 

"Clark, State Records, 660-662. 

" Arthur Lyon Cross, The Anglican Episcopate and The American 
Colonies (New York, Longmans, Green, and Co., 1902), 243. 

"Saunders, Colonial Records, VI, 1027, 1039-1041. 

17 Saunders, Colonial Records, VII, 102-104. 

" Hereafter to be abbreviated as the Society for the Propagation of the 

6 The North Carolina Historical Review 

A more personal view of the Established Church can be 
had from the letters of the North Carolina Clergy to the 
Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in the years just 
before 1765. With some exaggeration they reveal the trials 
of a minister in the sinful wilds of a small but growing colony. 
From Craven County, James Reed, one of the most famous 
colonial ministers, reported extreme difficulty in collecting 
his salary, deplored the many dissenters and infidels in his 
parish, and constantly begged for religious pamphlets to 
combat the "New Lights/' Their "crying-out, . . . falling 
down as in fits, . . . awakening in extacies, . . . and impulses, 
visions, and revelations;" 19 their "preaching the inexpediency 
of Human Learning & . . . the great expediency of Dreams 
Visions & immediate Revelation" 20 must have shocked the 
dignified and literate Reed. In Beaufort County, Alex 
Steward worked hard and seldom complained, although he 
was sincerely worried over the lack of ministers in neighbor- 
ing counties. By 1765 he was living in the first glebe to be 
furnished a minister in North Carolina. He desired pamphlets 
to fight the rash doctrines of the Anabaptists and blushingly 
admitted that in order to retain for the church some of the 
more dupable members he had baptised one man by im- 
mersion. 21 In Chowan County, Daniel Earl performed his 
duties, was influential in education, but reputedly divided 
his love between his ministry and his herring fishery. James 
Moir was preaching occasionally in various counties, always 
deploring his inability to accumulate a fortune, and at every 
opportunity criticising Governor Dobbs and the whole ec- 
clesiastical system. 23 The most tragic story of hardship was 
told in the letters of James McDowell of Brunswick County. 
Though his parish contained the largest church constructed 

19 G. W. Paschal, "Morgan Edwards' Materials Toward a History of the 
Baptists in the Province of North Carolina," North Carolina Historical 
Review, VII (1930), 383. Hereafter cited as Paschal, "Morgan Edwards' 

30 Saunders, Colonial Records, VI, 565. 

21 Saunders, Colonial Records, VI, 315-316, 734-735. 

23 Bennett H. Wall, "Charles Pettigrew, First Bishop-Elect of the North; 
Carolina Episcopal Church," North Carolina Historical Review, XXVIIl 
(1951), 17. 

28 Saunders, Colonial Records, VI, 1051. 

The Church Establishment 7 

in colonial North Carolina 24 and also the leading families, 
including Governor Dobbs, McDowell complained of the 
capricious weather, the long, hard trips to outlying chapels, 
his financial misery, his exclusion from vestry meetings, and 
the fact that he had only two slaves while other ministers 
in the province had twenty. 25 When his wife died in child- 
birth and the roof of his big, new church fell in, McDowell 
was ready to leave the colony in despair. In 1763 he died 
while still a minister in Brunswick. 

The most recurrent complaint of the ministers was about 
the dangerous growth of dissenting denominations. James 
Reed's listing and evaluation of these groups is a classic of 
brevity: "The Anabaptists are obstinate, illiterate & grossly 
ignorant, the Methodist [really New Light Baptists], ig- 
norant, censorious & uncharitable, the Quakers, Rigid, but 
the Presbyterians are pretty moderate except here & there 
a bigot or rigid Calvinist." 26 This is a fairly complete list, 
for, other than the German denominations, these four dis- 
senting groups were alone significant in colonial North Car- 
olina. The Moravians, by acts of Parliament and the North 
Carolina Assembly, were given equal rights with Anglicans 
and had a separate parish. 27 Beginning about 1750 a heavy 
German migration from Pennsylvania brought the Lutheran 
and German Reformed churches into the Piedmont region, 
notably along the Yadkin. These two German speaking de- 
nominations received many special religious privileges and, 
in return, were always completely law abiding. 28 Quakers 
had been among the earliest settlers in North Carolina and 
in 1765 were very numerous in the Northeast, particularly 
in Perquimans and Pasquotank counties. They were exempt- 

24 The Brunswick church was seventy-six feet and six inches long, fifty- 
three feet and three inches wide, and was twenty-four feet and four inches 
high. It had eleven windows, three large doors, and brick wall three feet 
thick. Marshall D. Haywood, Governor William Tryon, and His Administra- 
tion in the Province of North Carolina, 1765-1771 (Raleigh: E. M. Uzzel, 
Printer, 1903), 24. Hereafter cited as Haywood, Governor William Tryon 
and His Administration. 

"Saunders, Colonial Records, VI, 236-237, 729-730. 

"Saunders, Colonial Records, VI, 264-266. 

^Adelaide L. Fries, "The Moravian Contribution to Colonial North 
Carolina," North Carolina Historical Review, VII (1930), 14. 

28 William K. Boyd and Charles A. Krummel, "German Tracts Concerning 
the Lutheran Church in North Carolina During the Eighteenth Century," 
North Carolina Historical Review, VII (1930), 81. 

8 The North Carolina Historical Review 

ed from military service and all oaths, yet were sometimes 
strongly in opposition to the Establishment. 29 

The largest dissenting elements were the principal Baptist 
sects and the Presbyterians. After 1751 the Particular or 
Regular Baptists, strongly Calvinistic and the predecessors 
of the present day Primitive Baptists, absorbed most of the 
earliest Baptist group, the General or Free Will Baptists, and 
in 1765, the year of the strong vestry acts, united their sev- 
eral churches in the Kehukee Association. After 1755 an ex- 
tremely Arminian sect, the New Light Baptists, began to 
gain many adherents whose extreme emotionalism rendered 
them anathema to the Anglicans. They were most numerous 
in the western counties of Orange, Guilford, and Rowan, 
where they were organized in the Sandy Creek Association. 30 

The Presbyterians were almost as influential in colonial 
North Carolina as the Anglicans. Claiming all the privileges 
of the Scottish Church, many Presbyterians refused to con- 
sider themselves dissenters. Except for a small colony in 
Duplin County and about four congregations in Cumberland 
County, the Presbyterians were mostly in the, then, western 
counties of Orange, Mecklenburg, Rowan, Tryon, Guilford, 
Bute, Wake, Surry, and Granville. They were largely Scotch- 
Irish immigrants who had filtered down from Pennsylvania 
or had come up from Charleston. They made outstanding 
contributions to education and furnished a good share of 
the political leadership. 31 Living in frontier counties, these 
Presbyterians had been accustomed to an almost complete 
religious freedom before 1765 and were quick to devise ways 
of evading the church laws whenever they were about to 
be enforced in their midst. 

It is difficult to give even an approximate statistical break- 
down of the religious picture in North Carolina in 1765. The 
colony was growing rapidly; the total white and colored 
population rose from about 120,000 in 1759 to between 

29 William L. Grissom, History of Methodism in North Carolina (Nash- 
ville, Publishing House of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South, 1905), 

30 Paschal, "Morgan Edwards' Materials," 371. 

31 William H. Foote, Sketches of North Carolina (New York, Robert 
Carter, 1846), 188-189. Hereafter cited as Foote, Sketches of North Carolina. 

The Church Establishment 9 

200,000 and 250,000 by 1771. 32 With the growth in popula- 
tion, the dissenting denominations were rapidly increasing, 
both by immigration and conversions. The German Reformed 
and Lutheran groups contained only 3,000 families in about 
twenty congregations in 1771. The total German population, 
including the Moravians, could not have exceeded 20,000 
in that year; it was without doubt less in 1765. 33 After the 
Revolution the Quakers scarcely numbered over 5,000. If 
Morgan Edwards, a Baptist minister visiting North Carolina 
in 1772, is correct, the Baptists had sixteen churches as early 
as 1754 and by 1772 had thirty-two churches plus several 
more meeting places. In the latter years he estimated that 
39,750 people worshipped in Baptist congregations. 34 There 
are few clues as to the number of Presbyterians in North 
Carolina in 1765. They were probably almost as numerous as 
the Baptists and in some western counties were in a heavy 
majority. Always growing rapidly with the influx of Scottish 
immigrants, the Presbyterians had approximately thirty 
churches by the time of the Revolution and perhaps a dozen 
ministers, some of whom were very famous. Despite the more 
rapid growth of some of the dissenting groups, the Anglican 
Church remained the largest denomination in the colony 
until the Revolution. In the eastern and north-central coun- 
ties the Anglicans were well established; even in Orange 
and Rowan counties there were substantial congregations. 
The small number of churches and ministers in 1765 belies 
the potential strength of the established religion, for there 
were numerous congregations, sometimes several in a single 
county, worshipping in small chapels or homes and only 
occasionally receiving the sacraments from a visiting clergy- 

Though Governor Dobbs gave the Anglican Church a 
strong legal basis, Governor William Tryon tried to make 
the Establishment a living reality. With his administration 

^Evarts B. Greene and Virginia D. Harrington, American Population 
Before the Federal Census of 1790 (New York, Columbia University Press, 
1932), 158-159. 

33 Saunders, Colonial Records, VIII, 630-632. 

84 Paschal, "Morgan Edwards' Materials," 369, 394-395. 

10 The North Carolina Historical Review 

a new era in ecclesiastical affairs began. 35 Tryon was not 
a bigot in any sense; but he was very closely connected 
with the Episcopal Church, himself becoming a member 
of the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel. Recogniz- 
ing the great need for ministers in the colony, he used his 
influence to get young ministers to come to North Carolina. 
By April, 1767, he could report in one of his many succinct 
and literary communications to the Society, that there were 
now thirteen ministers instead of six. 36 By 1771 there were 
eighteen ministers, meaning that fully half the parishes had 
a full time parson. But Tryon, in his determined support 
of the Establishment, inevitably encountered the opposition 
of the dissenters and the more independent Anglicans. 

The fact that North Carolina had a decentralized ec- 
clesiastical system before 1765 very much influenced the 
reaction to a Crown-enforced establishment under Tryon. 
The vestry laws passed before 1765 had, it is true, embodied 
many of the restrictive clauses of the acts of 1765, but they 
had not been universally enforced, as only part of the par- 
ishes had been active or even organized. In addition, the 
direction of church affairs had been in the hands of the 
local vestry. When Tryon personally took over the direction 
of ecclesiastical affairs and began sending ministers into more 
and more counties, some times against the wishes of a ma- 
jority of the inhabitants, the Establishment seemed very 
oppressive to many groups. It should be kept in mind, how,- 
ever, that despite the limitations on personal freedom and 
the economic burden resulting from the Establishment, com- 
plete freedom of conscience was always granted to all Prot- 
estant groups in North Carolina. Anyone could worship as 
he pleased even though he were forced to fulfill certain 
obligations to the state church, such as paying his vestry tax. 

There were two types of resentment against the Establish- 
ment in North Carolina, each resulting from a different fea- 
ture of the vestry laws. First, the vestry acts were passed 
by the North Carolina Assembly and the Establishment was 

85 Joseph B. Cheshire, "The Church in the Province of North Carolina," in 
Sketches of Church History in North Carolina, edited by Joseph B. Cheshire 
(Wilmington: William L. DeRosset, Jr., Publisher, 1892), 75. Hereafter 
cited as Cheshire, "The Church in the Province of North Carolina." 

"Saunders, Colonial Records, VII, 456-458. 

The Church Establishment 11 

a North Carolina institution, favored, it seemed, by at least 
a majority of the province's leading citizens. Thus, among 
many dissenters, the burden of an established clergy could 
be blamed largely on the predominantly Anglican aristoc- 
racy within the state, or the office holding classes. But the 
Establishment was also a policy of the Crown. It was the 
governor, who as an agent of the Crown, pressed for, and 
finally was granted by a reluctant Assembly, an establish- 
ment which gave the Anglican clergy and the governor him- 
self privileged positions. It was the British governor who 
enforced the Establishment and who assumed the power 
of inducting ministers into vacant parishes. It was the Brit- 
ish Crown that persistently disallowed more liberal religious 
laws and which refused to recognize the peculiar circum- 
stances of the colonial church. Thus a great amount of the 
resentment against the Establishment among the dissenters, 
and almost all the resentment among the Anglicans, was 
directed against the English Crown, represented in most 
cases by the governor. 

Tryon assumed that the Orthodox Clergy Act of 1765, 
by not mentioning the right of presentation, gave him the 
authority to induct ministers into vacant parishes, and began 
to distribute the newly arrived clergymen into the most 
needy parishes. He early met difficulties. For a long time 
there had been a growing resentment of British rule in the 
eastern, predominantly Episcopal counties. The people of 
North Carolina felt that they had certain well established 
rights which were being encroached upon by the British 
Parliament. One of these rights was taxing themselves; an- 
other was choosing their own minister. The governor's usur- 
pation of ecclesiastical power not specifically granted him 
was ranked along side the hated Stamp Act as another ex- 
ample of increasing British tyranny. For this reason Tryon, 
instead of inducting a certain Cosgreve into Pitt County, 
sent him on a three months probation, an action which he 
apologetically explained as follows to the Lord Bishop of 

This probation I think for the interest of the cause of religion 
in these parts, the inhabitants seeming as jealous of any re- 
straint put on their consciences as they have of late shewn for 

12 The North Carolina Historical Review 

that on their property : Many persons have industriously spread 
among the parishes and vestries that as the patronage to livings 
is not specified in the above Act, the Crown cannot claim the 
patronage; some delicacy therefore your Lordship I hope sees 
is necessary in the establishment of the clergy here, where the 
minds of the larger body of inhabitants thro' the want of the 
means of culture are incapable of entertaining generous prin- 
ciples of public utility. 37 

In January, 1766, Tryon reported that a new minister, the 
Rev. Barnett, had taken up duties in Brunswick County. 38 
There the vestry promised him the regulation salary, but 
two years later Barnett remained in Brunswick only by the 
vestry's wishes, never having been officially inducted. In 
June, 1768 he wrote to the Society for the Propagation of the 
Gospel explaining his plight: 

The people of this Parish do still so violently oppose the pres- 
entation of the Crown to the Living, that I believe it will be 
found necessary for me to remove to another part of the prov- 
ince. . . . Permit me Sir to assure the Venerable Board that the 
people are so desirous of my stay with them on the usual terms, 
of an annual reelection as I have been informed, to be willing 
to make some addition to my former salary. . . . 39 

Governor Tryon was prepared to force induction of Bar- 
nett against the vestry's wishes, but Barnett, not wishing 
to stay in the county under those conditions, removed to 
Northampton. He was followed in Brunswick by a certain 
Cramp, whom Tryon proposed to present to the vestry. 
Cramp was fearful that he would starve if he were inducted, 
for, as he reported to Tryon, "none like the inducted par- 

" 40 


Tryon had similar troubles in Duplin and New Hanover 
counties. He reported to the Society for the Propagation of 
the Gospel that he feared the Rev. Briggs, whom he induct- 
ed into Duplin, would find his residence most disagreeable 
because of the resentment to inducted ministers. 41 When he 
sent a certain Wills to New Hanover County, preparatory to 

87 Saunders, Colonial Records, VII, 261. 

88 Saunders, Colonial Records, VII, 158. 

39 Saunders, Colonial Records, VII, 789-790. 

40 Saunders, Colonial Records, VIII, 12-16. 

41 Saunders, Colonial Records, VIII, 12-16. 

The Church Establishment 13 

induction, the vestry sent him a letter of protest, praising 
Wills as a "gentleman worthy of his sacred Function" but 
denying the right of presentation on the part of the governor, 
on the grounds that the Act of Assembly did not specifically 
grant him that power. 42 This time Tryon proceded to induct 
in spite of their protests, but begged the parish to extend 
good services to Wills until a new Clergy Act clearly grant- 
ing the right of presentation could be passed. 43 Thus, in four 
or five instances at least, the people most heartily in favor of 
an establishment, the churchmen themselves, refused to give 
up their cherished right of choosing and dismissing their 
own minister even at the expense of having no minister at all. 
A stronger opposition of a different type greeted the Estab- 
lishment in the western counties where in a predominently 
Presbyterian and Baptist region, the Vestry Acts were never 
effectively enforced. The Rev. Eli W. Caruthers, biographer 
of David Caldwell, aptly summarized the religious situation 
in that area before the Revolution: 

Presbyterian ministers, and probably others too, were cele- 
brating marriages without asking leave of the parish minister, 
and building churches, holding meetings, and administrating 
ordinances without consulting the Bishop of London, or ob- 
taining license from any human authority; the people, without 
any serious apprehension of consequences, were setting at 
naught the enactments of arbitrary power, by electing for 
vestrymen such men as they know would not serve, or by staying 
away from the polls and electing no vestrymen at all; and in 
some counties . . . they were compelling the Assembly to rescind 
their vestry acts. 44 

The citizens of Mecklenburg County did not want an 
established minister. In 1766 Andrew Morton arrived in 
New Bern, planning to go on to Mecklenburg as a minister 
and missionary of the Society for the Propagation of the 
Gospel. Tryon persuaded him against continuing his journey, 
doubting if he would get any favorable reception or any 
hearers among the many Presbyterians in Mecklenburg, who 
always managed to elect vestrymen from their own number, 

42 Saunders, Colonial Records, VIII, 119. 
^Saunders, Colonial Records, VIII, 219-220. 

u Eli W. Carruthers, A Sketch of the Life and Character of the Rev. 
David Caldwell, D.D. (Greensborough: Swain and Sherwood, 1842), 75. 

14 The North Carolina Historical Review 

only to have them disqualify. 45 After changing his plans and 
going to Northampton County, Morton wrote the Society 
for the Propagation of the Gospel that the people in Meck- 

. . . had a solemn league and covenant teacher settled among 
them That they were in general greatly averse to the Church of 
England — and that they looked upon a law lately enacted in this 
province for the better establishment of the Church as oppres- 
sive as the Stamp Act and were determined to prevent its taking 
place there, by opposing the settlement of any Minister of the 
Church of England. 46 

In 1769 the citizens of Mecklenburg sent a petition to 
the governor setting forth their religious position. According 
to it, 1,000 loyal freemen in the county held to the Church of 
Scotland and were entitled to all the rights and privileges 
of any British subject, either English or Scottish. In Scotland 
the Presbyterian Church was the state church with privileges 
similar to the Church in England; moreover, they claimed 
additional rights granted by the original North Carolina 
Charter. In view of these rights they felt it a burden to be 
taxed to support an Episcopal clergy, especially when they 
had two Presbyterian ministers to support and when only 
one twentieth of the people were Episcopal. They petitioned 
that each group be allowed to worship God according to 
conscience, and that each pay its own clergy. They stated 
that an inducted minister would be useless, that ten shillings 
per taxable was an enormous sum to put under the power 
of the vestry, being more than it took to run the county 
government, and that the vestry law, as a whole, was curbing 
settlement in the back country and would always remain a 
grievance. 47 Many of the immigrants to the region were vir- 
tual refugees from the stricter religious conformity of Vir- 
ginia, and were very fearful of losing the early freedom they 
found on the frontier. Actually, the people were never forced 
to support an established clergyman; none ever came to 
Mecklenburg, and with reason. 

46 Saunders, Colonial Records, VII, 241-242. 

46 Saunders, Colonial Records, VII, 252-253. 

47 Saunders, Colonial Records, X, 1015-1017. 

The Church Establishment 15 

A unique petition arrived in New Bern in 1769 from the 
huge frontier county of Rowan, then stretching an indefinite 
distance westward into the Smokies and the Cherokee coun- 
try. A small number of Episcopalians in Rowan were ag- 
grieved because the vestry acts were not being enforced in 
their county. They complained that Rowan contained people 
of every nation and creed and that the many dissenters 
elected as vestrymen such of their own number "as evade 
the Acts of Assembly and refuse the oaths whence we can 
never expect the regular enlivening beams of the Holy Gos- 
pel to shine upon us." 48 In another petition they asked Tryon 
to appoint their list of vestry candidates even though they 
were defeated in the election. They also asked him to induct 
their newly arrived minister, the Rev. Theodorus Swaine 
Draige, into their parish, which had no active vestry. 49 

It can be wondered why Governor Tryon, who would not 
give Andrew Morton leave to go to Mecklenburg County, 
would allow Draige to go to neighboring Rowan as an estab- 
lished clergyman. Here, among numerous dissenters and 
virtually on the frontier, poor, gentle Draige became a self- 
styled martyr to the cause of his church and to the laws of 
his country. He tried to allay the alarm caused among the 
dissenters by his arrival, by conceding them the right to con- 
tinue performing marriages and funerals without giving him 
all the fees as required by the Vestry Act. He asked only 
that they receive his permission before performing the cere- 
mony. Much to Draige's distress, the dissenting ministers 
and the magistrates continued to marry and bury as before, 
without permission from anyone. It finally became clear to 
Draige that he was not wanted in Rowan by more than a 
small minority of the inhabitants, he explained his situation 
as follows: 

They say not in words only but wishing that as they have 
opposed England in endeavoring to intrude on their civil rights, 
they also shall, and have a right to oppose any intrusion on 
their religious rights, a Maximum I presume dangerous in itself 
not with respect to this county and the neighboring counties, but 
to the whole Back Frontier of America, principally settled 

48 Saunders, Colonial Records, VIII, 219. 

49 Saunders, Colonial Records, VIII, 154-155. 

16 The North Carolina Historical Review 

with Sectaries, and is deserving of the attention of Government, 
before power is added to inclination. 50 

Draige had no vestry in Rowan and could not secure the 
election of one. At each vestry election the dissenters made 
use of a very common method of nullifying the law. Since 
they were a majority, they elected dissenters as vestrymen; 
then the elected list of dissenting candidates would refuse 
to take the prescribed oath and automatically disqualify 
themselves, leaving no vestry. To disqualify they had to pay 
a rather stiff fine of three pounds each, but in Rowan the 
dissenters did not mind this. They had built up a permanent 
fund from which to draw the disqualification penalties by 
informing against law violators and collecting one half of 
the fine. 51 In the vestry election of 1770 the dissenters ef- 
fectively used this tactic despite Draige's attempts to per- 
suade a majority to vote for his list of candidates. Helpless 
to do anything more himself, Draige misrepresented the con- 
ditions in Rowan while begging Tryon to intervene. He 
continued a short time in the county on voluntary contribu- 
tions, handled by an unofficial or rump vestry made up of 
the defeated list of candidates. 52 

In Guilford County, which was strongly Presbyterian and 
Baptist the same method of evasion was used as in Rowan. 
In 1772 the Assembly at the insistence of the Presbyterian 
delegates dissolved a vestry in Guilford on the grounds that 
it was illegally elected, probably somewhat like Draige's 
rump vestry. 53 In Wake County, another strong dissenting 
area, the same situation occurred. When the Assembly be- 
came cognizant of these several effective evasions of the 
vestry law, it passed different local bills, each permitting a 
special vestry election in a designated county. In the special 
election the Anglicans had another chance to get a qualified 
vestry. At least the dissenters had to pay more fines for dis- 
qualifying. The Presbyterian members of the Assembly later 
had these local bills annulled on the grounds of illegal dis- 
crimination. Presbyterians in the counties specified by the 

60 Saunders, Colonial Records, VIII, 180. 

51 Saunders, Colonial Records, VIII, 179-181. 

53 Saunders, Colonial Records, VIII, 202-204, 205-210, 502-506. 

63 Saunders, Colonial Records, IX, 661. 

The Church Establishment 17 

acts were put at a disadvantage as compared with their 
brethren in such counties as Rowan, where evasion of the 
vestry act remained legal and effective. Governor Martin, 
who followed Tryon in 1771 and who lacked his respect 
for the Presbyterians, avowed that he would pass an act 
universally excluding Presbyterians from vestries. 54 

The Quakers and Baptists joined the Presbyterians in op- 
posing the Establishment. Tryon explained the reason that 
the Rev. Fiske could not collect his pay in Pasquotank 
County in 1769 as follows: 

I am told his parish is full of quakers and anabaptists, the 
first no friend, the latter an avowed enemy to the mother church. 
It is certain the preeminence the Church of England has ob- 
tained over the sectaries by legislative authority has drawn 
upon her their jealousies. 55 

In 1771 the vestry of Pasquotank refused to serve and 
the Assembly had to pass a special act to provide for the 
poor. The Quakers were also intransigent in Perquimans 
County just before the Revolution. The Rev. Pettigrew re- 
ported that they would neither hear nor contribute to the 
established minister. As a result the Perquimans Vestry 
decided to pay Pettigrew by voluntary contributions rather 
than by trying to extort anything from the Quakers. 56 From 
1765 until 1776 there were almost constant evasions or 
criticisms of either the vestry acts or the governor's interpre- 
tation of them. When enforced against the will of the people, 
these acts were part of the bitter fruits of an established 

The vestry acts were not the only oppressive aspects of a 
state religion. Certain privileges were given to the Anglican 
Church and denied other denominations. The two most im- 
portant were the right of performing marriages and the right 
to operate chartered schools. The marriage provision was in- 
corporated into the Marriage Act of 1741 and in later amend- 
ments to it. By this act only orthodox clergymen or, in their 
absence, magistrates could perform the marriage ceremony. 

64 Saunders, Colonial Records, IX, 341. 

65 Saunders, Colonial Records, VIII, 14. 
56 Saunders, Colonial Records, X, 496. 

18 The North Carolina Historical Review 

Perhaps, as the Rev. Joseph B. Cheshire pointed out, there 
were few organized dissenters in North Carolina in 1741 
and no dissenting minister who claimed any authority to 
perform the marriage ceremony. 57 Certainly the picture had 
changed by 1765. Foote believed that one of the reasons the 
Rev. Alexander Craighead, first Presbyterian minister in 
western North Carolina, removed from Virginia to Mecklen- 
burg County was to get away from the intolerant church 
laws of Virginia and to a place where, remote from all au- 
thority, he could marry his people in conformity with Presby- 
terian practice. 58 Presbyterian ministers were well known to 
be performing marriages according to their own customs 
throughout western North Carolina. The Governor's Council 
proposed a cruel amendment to the Marriage Act in 1762 
because of this breach of the law. It would have placed on 
any "dissenting minister whatsoever" who performed a mar- 
riage, a fine of fifty pounds proclamation money recoverable 
by anyone suing for same. 59 This harsh amendment was 
blocked by the more tolerant Assembly, probably averting 
much trouble. 60 

In 1766 the Assembly faced up to what could have been 
an embarrassing fait accompli. Legally or not, many couples 
in North Carolina had been married by dissenting clergy- 
men, primarily Presbyterians. An amendment to the act of 
1741 provided that, as the Presbyterians did not believe 
themselves included in the marriage act and had endanger- 
ed the validity of their marriages by marrying without license 
or banns, all such marriages performed before the first of 
1767 would be recognized as legal. Thereafter all marriages 
performed without a license or banns were to incur a fifty 
pounds penalty. As a special boon to Presbyterians they alone 
among dissenters were granted the right of performing mar- 
riages, but only with license and on the condition that the 
whole fee be given to the orthodox minister if he demanded 
it. 61 

67 Cheshire, "The Church in the Province of North Carolina," 68-69. 
58 Foote, Sketches of North Carolina, 186-187. 
69 Saunders, Colonial Records, VI, 881. 
60 Saunders, Colonial Records, VI, 884. 
81 Clark, State Records, XXIII, 672-674. 

The Church Establishment 19 

Although the amendment was passed partly as a favor 
to them, the Presbyterians were quick to resent its wording 
and intent. In a petition of 1769 the citizens in Mecklenburg 
declared that the act scandalized Presbyterian clergymen 
and tended to promote immorality by obstructing the "nat- 
ural and inalienable right" of marriage. 62 The citizens of 
Tryon County condemned the amendment for not allowing 
Presbyterians to marry by banns. They declared this a privi- 
lege never heretofore denied in America. 63 But the strongest 
petition came from Orange and Rowan counties: 

And may it please you to grant us a Repeal of the Act, pro- 
hibiting Dissenting Ministers from marrying according to the 
Decretals, Rites and Ceremonys, of their Respective Churches: 
a priviledge they were debarred of in no other part of his 
Majesty's Dominions; and as we humbly conceive, a priviledge 
they stand entitled to, by the Act of Toleration, and in fine, 
a priviledge granted even to the very Catholics in Ireland, and 
the Protestants in France. 64 

For once the grievances of the Presbyterians were heard. 
In the Regulator troubles of 1769-71, the higher echelons to 
the Assembly remained loyal to Governor Tryon in his ex- 
treme measures to suppress the revolts. As a reward for this 
loyalty, and to appease some of the Regulators, he approved 
two very lenient acts passed by the Assembly in 1770 and 
1771. One was an amendment to the marriage law; another 
was a charter to Queen's College. The former act modified 
the marriage law to allow Presbyterians to perform marriages 
in their own way and without any fee to the established 
clergy. 65 Another act to allow Presbyterians to wed without 
license was vetoed by Tryon because it was directly against 
his instructions from the Crown. 66 His veto was unimportant 
anyway, for the Crown refused to accept even the first con- 
cession because of its encouragement to dissenters and be- 
cause of its possible weakening effect on the Establishment. 
The Rev. James Reed wrote to the Society for the Progaga- 
tion of the Gospel that, should the act receive Royal consent, 

63 Saunders, Colonial Records, X, 1015-1017. 

63 Saunders, Colonial Records, VIII, 80b. 

64 Saunders, Colonial Records, VIII, 82-83. 
66 Saunders, Colonial Records, VIII, 322. 

68 Saunders, Colonial Records, VIII, 469. 

20 The North Carolina Historical Review 

"it would be a fatal blow to the Church of England." 67 On 
the further recommendation of the Board of Trade, the law 
was disallowed in 1771, leaving a deep grievance among 
Presbyterians. 68 It is notable that one of the first acts passed 
after the adoption of the State Constitution of 1776 was one 
to permit any regular minister of any denomination to per- 
form marriages. 69 

Only a small bit of favoritism to the Anglican Church 
carried over into the field of education in North Carolina. 
Pre-revolutionary education in the province was almost 
entirely private and church sponsored. The Presbyterians 
were pre-eminent in education and conducted their schools 
without restraints of any kind. Only in a few state-chartered 
schools was there any discrimination in favor of the Angli- 
cans; New Bern Academy is one example. In 1764 a certain 
Tomlinson from England began teaching school in New 
Bern, mainly because of the efforts of the Rev. James Reed. 
Tomlinson was himself an Anglican and annually received 
fifteen pounds from the Society for the Propagation of the 
Gospel for his academic labors. 70 In 1766, by an act of as- 
sembly, the state virtually adopted New Bern Academy, 
giving it a charter and providing for additional revenue. The 
act required the master of the school to be a member of the 
Church of England. To provide extra revenue it permitted 
a tax to be placed on all rum entering the Neuse River, thus, 
in a sense, taxing dissenters as well as churchmen for an An- 
glican school. It should be noted that the school was begun 
by an Episcopal master in a strong Anglican area and was 
well established before receiving state help and continued to 
receive aid from the Society for the Propagation of the Gos- 
pel. After the Revolution the master continued to be an 
Episcopalian without any requirement to that effect. Finally, 
as the school had a religious as well as a secular purpose, 
there was very little room for objection by the dissenters, 
or actually, even by the rum drinking dissenters. 


87 Saunders, Colonial Records, IX, 6. 

68 Saunders, Colonial Records, IX, 7, 284-285. 

69 Clark, State Records, XXIII, 997. 

70 Charles Lee Raper, The Church and Private Schools of North Carolina 
(Greensboro: N. C, Jos. J. Stone, Book and Job Printer, 1898), 25. 

71 Rev. Robert B. Drane, "Colonial Parishes and Church Schools," in 
Sketches of Church History in North Carolina, 177-178. 

The Church Establishment 21 

In 1770 the North Carolina Assembly passed an act char- 
tering an academy at Edenton. Reluctantly, and only after 
a veto by Tryon of a former act, the members of the As- 
sembly agreed to pass this act though it required the master 
of the school to be an Episcopalian. As it received no aid 
from the state, Edenton Academy remained a private school 
for all practical purposes. 72 

The most ambitious educational project in colonial North 
Carolina was Queen's College in Mecklenburg County. The 
forerunner of this college was a school taught in 1767 at 
Sugar Creek, a few miles from Charlotte, by Joseph Alexan- 
der, a Princeton graduate. When the citizens of Mecklenburg 
decided to enlarge the scope of Sugar Creek School, Queen's 
College became its successor and answered a real need for 
an institution of higher learning in central and western Car- 
olina. 73 In addition to his concessions to the Presbyterians 
in the form of a better marriage law, Tryon also approved 
an act for establishing Queen's College. By the terms of the 
act the president of the college had to be of the Established 
Church, 74 but it was presumed that all the other masters 
and the trustees would be Presbyterian, as it was in a Pres- 
byterian region and received most of its support from that 
denomination. 75 The college was to be financed by private 
endowments and by a duty of six pence per gallon on all 
rum and spirituous liquors brought into and disposed of in 
Mecklenburg County for a period of ten years. 76 

Governor Tryon urged the Board of Trade to accept the 
act in view of the Presbyterian's assistance in the Regulator 
controversy, but his appeal was in vain. The Board of Trade 
felt that the act should be disallowed because it favored 
Presbyterians and hindered the Establishment at a time when 
the King could not safely give encouragement to toleration. 
The act was disallowed in the same year, 1771. 77 A later act 

73 Saunders, Colonial Records, VII, 591, 632-633. 

73 Charles L. Smith, History of Education in North Carolina (Washington, 
D. C., Government Printing Office, 1888), 32-33. Hereafter cited as Smith, 
History of Education in North Carolina. 

7 * Saunders, Colonial Records, VIII, 448. 

75 Saunders, Colonial Records, VIII, 525-527. 

70 R. D. W. Connor, "The Genesis of Higher Education in North Carolina," 
North Carolina Historical Review, XXVIII (1951), 5. 

"Saunders, Colonial Records, IX, 249-251, 284-285. 

22 The North Carolina Historical Review 

for the same purpose was also disallowed, leaving a cause 
for bitterness against the Crown on the part of the people 
of Mecklenburg. 78 About 1775 the name Queen's College 
was changed, perhaps, spitefully, to Liberty Hall Academy. 
Also in 1775 the citizens of Mecklenburg were leaders in 
the struggle for American independence. 

Since the resistance to North Carolina's religious estab- 
lishment paralleled a series of events leading to the Revolu- 
tion and since the Establishment ended in the constitutional 
changes accompanying the revolution, the connection be- 
tween the political and religious discontent might be as- 
sumed to be very close. The simplest and most logical story 
would have the Revolution beginning with the Regulator 
troubles and resulting from both political and religious op- 
pression. 79 A close study of available evidence shows the 
great complexity of this period in North Carolina's history 
and indicates the following conclusions: first, the Regulator 
trouble was not directly related to the Revolution and was 
primarily caused by economic and not religious grievances. 
Secondly, the Revolution was only slightly influenced by 
religious oppression. Thirdly, the ending of the Establish- 
ment in 1776 was as much an accompaniment of the political 
disturbances as the result of a long series of struggles for 
religious freedom. 

The Regulator revolt, beginning in 1768 and ending with 
the Battle of Alamance in May, 1771, was not a revolt against 
the form of government but against certain unfair agents 
who administered the constitution. It was not a movement 
for freedom, but a popular upheaval, or a yoeman's revolt. 
It was suppressed by North Carolina soldiers under many 
of the same officers who later led the colonial troops in the 
Revolution. Most important for this study, the Regulation 
was not a religious movement; the primary grievances were 
purely economic. Those grievances were excessive taxes in a 
time of scarce currency, dishonest sheriffs and other county 

78 Smith, History of Education in North Carolina, 33. 

79 This general explanation is implied in Stephen B. Weeks, Church and 
State in North Carolina (John Hopkins University Studies, Series XI, 
1893), 46. 

The Church Establishment 23 

officials, including judges, and the extortionate fees extract- 
ed by unscrupulous lawyers and officials. 80 

Nor can it be said conclusively that religious grievances 
did not have any bearing at all on the Regulators. Certainly 
the Marriage Act of 1766, by requiring a license costing ten 
shillings for any marriage performed by a dissenting minister, 
worked an added economic hardship in the predominantly 
Presbyterian and Baptist regions of Orange, Rowan, and 
Anson counties. In his Impartial Relation, one of the better 
first hand accounts of the Regulators, Herman Husbands 
denounced an establishment or any other organized religion 
which joined the magistracy to become lords over the 
people. 81 Although the Regulators did not complain about 
vestry dues, this added tax, if it were collected in any of the 
Regulator areas, must have seemed an added burden. Other 
than petitioning Tryon to allow their ministers to marry ac- 
cording to forms prescribed by their respective churches, 
the Regulators were usually complaining about intolerable 
economic conditions, which they felt to be directly ascribable 
to the dishonesty of their own county and state officials. 

All the organized religious groups denounced the methods 
of the Regulators. The area around Orange and Rowan in- 
cluded four leading Presbyterian ministers— Hugh McAden, 
James Creswell, Henry Patillo, and David Caldwell. These 
ministers addressed a letter to all Presbyterians, pleading 
for obedience to law and order. 82 They also pledged their 
loyalty in a letter to Tryon. 83 These ministers knew that many 
Presbyterians were in the ranks of the Regulators and were 
themselves sympathetic with the cause of the Regulators, 
only denouncing their use of force. Dr. Caldwell tried to 
negotiate some peacful settlement up to the very day of the 
Battle of Alamance. The German churches denounced the 
Regulators in accordance with their belief in subordination 

80 John Spencer Bassett, "The Regulators of North Carolina," Annual 
Report of the American Historical Association for 189U, 142-150; also see 
Haywood, Governor William Tryon and His Administration, 78. 

81 Herman Husbands, "An Impartial Relation of the First Rise and Cause 
of the Recent Differences in Public Affairs," North Carolina Historical 
Review, III (1926), 302-303. 

82 Saunders, Colonial Records, VII, 814-816. 

83 Saunders, Colonial Records, VII, 813-814. 

24 The North Carolina Historical Review 

to the state. The Quakers were as usual pacifists. 84 The Sandy 
Creek Baptist Association resolved that: "If any of our mem- 
bers shall take up arms against the legal authority or aid and 
abet them that do so he shall be excommunicated &c." 85 
Although the Regulators included men from every denomi- 
nation, the New Light Baptists, largely representing a low 
economic class, probably furnished more than their propor- 
tionate share. This is indicated by the fact that, according 
to Morgan Edwards, all but eight of the members of Great- 
Cohara Church moved away from North Carolina because of 
the Regulator troubles. Sandy Creek Church dropped in 
membership from 606 to 14 when many families, despairing 
of better times after the rout at Alamance, left the province. 86 
Another indication that the Regulators were not revolting 
against the Establishment is the fact that many Regulators 
were Anglicans. Husbands said the most trusted Regulators 
"were of the Church of England Communion." 87 The estab- 
lished ministers naturally opposed the Regulators. When 
Tryon first brought troops westward in 1768 to quiet the 
first series of disturbances, the established clergyman in 
Orange County, old Parson Micklejohn, preached a fiery 
sermon to the assembled troops, using Romans 13: 1-2 as 
a text— a text obviously aimed at the Regulators: 


Let every Soul be subject unto the higher powers; for there 
is no Power but of God ; the powers that be are ordained by God. 

Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordi- 
nance of God; and they that resist shall receive to themselves 

Not to be outdone in loyalty, the Rev. James McCarty, 
newly arrived clergyman in Granville County, preached a 
sermon to the second expedition on the text: "He that hath 
no sword, let him sell his garment and buy one." 89 

84 Haywood, Governor William Tryon and His Administration, 189. 

85 Paschal, "Morgan Edwards' Materials," 396. 

89 Paschal, "Morgan Edwards' Materials," 381, 385. 

87 Haywood, Governor William Tryon and His Administration, 189. 

88 William K. Boyd, "Some North Carolina Tracts of the Eighteenth 
Century," North Carolina Historical Review, III (1926), 462. 

89 Haywood, Governor William Tryon and His Administration, 102. 

The Church Establishment 25 

In the Revolution the same group of men, lawyers, sheriffs, 
and officeholders, who had been oppressing the regulating 
groups in the West were the leaders in the fight against 
England, while the name Regulator became almost synony- 
mous with Tory. 90 The Regulation was primarily a yeoman's 
revolt; the Revolution was more a revolt of the middle class. 
The Regulators were desperately fighting for relief from im- 
poverishing internal conditions. The leaders of the Revolu- 
tion were debating lofty political principles and resisting a 
restrictive and annoying British authority. As much as the 
Regulators had religious grievances, they were directed 
against a class of men within the colony who enforced, and 
sometime profited from, the vestry and marriage laws. To 
the extent that the Revolution was fought because of reli- 
gious grievances, the enemy was always the British Crown. 

The earliest settlers in North Carolina lent that province 
a distinctively independent attitude— an attitude which of- 
ten vented itself in turbulence. Under the guise of beautiful 
words, the Assembly had a long history of opposition to the 
Crown. The delegates had always been quick to drag up 
their old Charter as a virtual bill of rights. After 1765 this 
independence was further awakened by a series of events. 
The Stamp Act was abhorred in North Carolina; the agent 
was made to swear he would not attempt to execute the law. 
Governor Tryon, with his royal bearing and pompous dis- 
play, was well liked by the aristocratic elements in the state, 
but he left a legacy of trouble for Governor Martin. His ex- 
travagance in building a £15,000 palace, in leading a costly 
expedition to survey the Cherokee boundary, and in his os- 
tentatious expeditions against the Regulators had left a 
huge debt. When Tryon left North Carolina the bond be- 
tween the governor and ruling class was broken, for Governor 
Martin was plain, blunt and obviously in sympathy with the 
Regulator class. The break between Martin and the Assem- 
bly was soon complete. Martin tried to collect several special 
taxes, some to redeem paper currency issued as far back 
as 1748. He proposed to carry out, at the people's expense, 

Haywood, Governor William Tryon and His Administration, 166, 177. 

26 The North Carolina Historical Review 

the Crown's advice on the boundary dispute between North 
and South Carolina, which deprived North Carolina of much 
valuable land. Finally, when he arrogantly refused to accept 
any Court Bill which included a foreign attachment clause, 
the Crown government was virtually at an end. The lawyers, 
out of a job when the Assembly refused to pass any Court 
Bill at all, became the leaders of the revolutionary move- 
ment. 91 Sympathy for other colonies bolstered North Caro- 
lina's determination to resist British authority. Committees 
of Safety were formed all over the state. In the midst of all 
these happenings, the religious questions became secondary 
considerations. The governor's insistence on the right of 
presentation was one of the many past grievances which had 
added to the growing dissatisfaction. In one location, Meck- 
lenburg County, the seedbed of the Revolution in western 
North Carolina, the royal disallowance of the charter of 
Queen's College and of the Marriage Act of 1771 undoubted- 
ly had a great influence in driving these Presbyterians to 
open rebellion. 92 

The evidence indicates that the early dissatisfaction with 
British rule did not grow out of opposition to the idea of an 
Anglican establishment, however it did partly spring from 
what was believed to be a usurpation of ecclesiastical power 
by the governor. Many of the leaders of the Revolution, if 
not most, were Anglicans and many of the vestries went along 
with the colonial policy. For example, in June, 1776, the 
Vestry of Chowan County subscribed to the revolutionary 
oath, swearing support to the Continental and Provincial 
congresses. 93 In Pitt County the Committee of Safety decided 
to sell at public auction any fire arms taken from Negroes 
and give the money to the parish. 94 When the Committee 
of Safety of New Bern ordered a day of "fasting, humiliation 
and prayer," the Episcopal minister, James Reed, was asked 
to perform divine services. 95 On the other hand, most of the 

81 Enoch Walter Sikes, The Transition of North Carolina from Colony to 
Commonwealth (John Hopkins University Studies, Series XVI, 1898), 7-41. 

93 Charles Lee Raper, North Carolina — A Study in English Colonial 
Government (New York, The MacMillan Company, 1904), 227. 

83 Saunders, Colonial Records, X, 612. 

84 Saunders, Colonial Records, X, 63. 

85 Saunders, Colonial Records, X, 115-116. 

The Church Establishment 27 

Royalists were from the back country and were largely dis- 
senters. The newly arrived Scottish Presbyterians supported 
England all through the war. Most revealing of all, in 1774, 
the men who were soon to assume the leadership in the Revo- 
lution and were already defying Governor Martin on the 
important court issue, re-enacted the Vestry Act for ten more 
years. 96 The old act had expired two years before and Gov- 
ernor Martin begged that it be extended. If the members of 
the Assembly had desired the Establishment to end in 1774, 
they would surely have taken this perfect opportunity to 
neglect to renew the act. Certainly, with the ill feeling be- 
tween Martin and the Assembly, the act was continued only 
because the delegates wanted it continued. 

If there was still enough sentiment to continue the Estab- 
lishment in 1774, why did it end with the State Constitution 
of 1776? In the first place, the Episcopal Church declined 
under Martin. The political controversies hurt the church 
and without any court law of any kind the minister could 
not force the payment of his salary. 97 The dissenters were 
growing rapidly; the Methodists were beginning to become 
important in the state. Much more important was the fact 
that the largest share of the established ministers, several 
still receiving annual stipends from the Society for the Propa- 
gation of the Gospel, remained loyal to the British. 98 If the 
leadership of the Anglican Church had firmly supported the 
Revolution, the sentiment against the Establishment at the 
Constitutional Convention in 1776 might not have been suf- 
ficient to overthrow it. With the relaxing of the vestry laws, 
and with the ignominious arrest and suspension of several of 
its clergymen, the Anglican church, stigmatized alike by 
name and origin, did not have the strength to survive the 
political changes of 1776. 

It is impossible to gauge the exact amount of sentiment 
that had long been forming against the Establishment. The 
numerous complaints and evasions among the dissenters 
indicate the oppressive nature of favoritism to one church 
and one clergy. It is clear that the majority sentiment, per- 

96 Saunders, Colonial Records, IX, 861. 

97 Saunders, Colonial Records, IX, 1251. 

98 Saunders, Colonial Records, IX, 1003-1004. 

28 The North Carolina Historical Review 

haps even among Episcopalians, was against a rigid marriage 
law and narrow educational restrictions. Although the 
Church achieved its maximum growth under Tryon, the 
establishment was not a success. The Vestry Act gave so 
much power to the governor that even Anglicans protested. 
The Vestry and Orthodox Clergy Acts remained so incapable 
of enforcement that many parishes paid their minister by 
voluntary contributions. When the revolt became a move- 
ment for complete independence, many people who, while 
approving an establishment of the Protestant religion, de- 
tested the restrictive and unfair aspects of the current ec- 
clesiastical system. At last they had their opportunity to over- 
throw the English Establishment which they accomplished. 
To their delegates to the Provincial Congress, which took 
over the government in 1775, Mecklenburg County gave 
instructions to support an establishment of Protestantism, 
with a confession and profession of that religion to be nec- 
essary for any person holding public office. Other than this, 
the delegates were advised to "oppose to the utmost any 
particular church or set of Clergymen being invested with 
power to decree rites and Ceremonies." They were also to 
"oppose the establishment of any mode of worship to be sup- 
ported to the opposition of the rights of conscience." 99 In 
1776 Mecklenburg instructed its delegates to the Constitu- 
tional Convention to see that 

In all times hereafter no professing Christian of any denomi- 
nation whatever shall be compelled to pay any tax or duty 
toward the support of the clergy or worship of any other 
denomination. 100 

After the adoption of the State Constitution the Mecklen- 
burg delegates were to urge the passing of two laws, one to 
abolish all vestry and marriage acts, and the other to allow 
any minister to perform marriages after publication of 
banns. 101 The only other set of instructions came from Orange 
County, and on religious matters, closely paralleled those of 

99 Saunders, Colonial Records, X, 241. 
™° Saunders, Colonial Records, X, 870d. 
101 Saunders, Colonial Records, X, 870e. 

The Church Establishment 29 

The State Constitution of 1776 embodied the same reli- 
gious principles as the above instructions. Article XIX of the 
Bill of Rights read: "That all men have a natural and un- 
alienable right to worship Almighty God, according to the 
dictates of their own consciences." Articles XXXIV of the 
Constitution further clarified the religious question: 

That there shall be no Establishment of any one religious 
Church or Denomination in this State in Preferance to any 
other, neither shall any person, on any pretense whatsoever, be 
compelled to attend any Place of worship contrary to his own 
Faith or judgment, or be obliged to pay for the Purchase of any 
Glebe, or the building of any House of Worship, or for the 
maintenance of any Minister or Ministry, contrary to what 
he believes right, or has voluntarily or personally engaged to 
perform, but all persons shall be at Liberty to exercise their 
own mode of Worship. Provided, That nothing herein con- 
tained shall be construed to exempt Preachers of treasonable and 
seditious Discourses, from legal trial and Punishment. 102 

The idea of a lax Protestant establishment, already em- 
bodied in the Mecklenburg instruction, was hotly debated 
in the convention and finally accepted in a mild form in 
Article XXXI. The Rev. David Caldwell is reputed to have 
authored and defended this clause: 

That no person who shall deny the Being of God, or the truth 
of the Protestant Religion, or the divine authority either of the 
Old or New Testament, or shall hold religious Principles in- 
compatible with the Freedom and Safety of the State, shall be 
capable of holding any office, or Place of Trust or Profit, in the 
civil Department within this State. 103 

An effective religious establishment came late to North 
Carolina. In the strong form that it assumed as a result of 
a consistent but unrealistic Crown policy, the Establishment 
met various types of opposition from both Anglicans and 
dissenters. This opposition was neither an important issue 
in the War of the Regulators nor a major cause of the Revo- 
lution, though it did reflect, along with the many political 
controversies, a determined insistence by North Carolinians 
on local autonomy. This dislike of centralization was to be 

wa Saunders, Colonial Records, X, 1011. 
103 Saunders, Colonial Records, X, 1011. 

30 The North Carolina Historical Review 

again reflected in North Carolina's failure to ratify the Fed- 
eral Constitution in 1788. The religious provisions of the 
State Constitution of 1776 can be explained by this desire for 
local religious autonomy, coupled with the steady growth of 
dissenters and the unpopular role played by the Anglican 
clergy in the Revolution. It was unfortunate for the Anglican 
Church that the Establishment became stronger and more 
fettering at the very time the colony was in the mood for 
asserting its own independence, for with the ending of polit- 
ical support the church was so helpless that it barely sur- 
vived. It was another generation before the Episcopal faith 
could live down the stigma of having been the state church, 
or could, on the other hand, become strong enough to pros- 
per without the state's help. 


By William S. Hoffmann 

The election of 1836 was one of the most significant in 
the history of the United States. Though generally neglected 
by historians it is unique in American history. It is the only 
election in which a political party deliberately ran more than 
one presidential candidate. The Democrats had a national 
candidate, Martin Van Buren, who was not especially popular 
in any section of the country; the Whigs had three sectional 
candidates, Hugh Lawson White, William Henry Harrison, 
and Daniel Webster. White ran only in the South; Webster, 
in parts of New England, and Harrison, in the remainder of 
the East and Northwest. Supporters of each of the Whig can- 
didates could appeal to the people of each region and tell 
them that the Democratic candidate was an enemy of their 
section. They hoped to keep Van Buren from securing a 
majority of the electoral vote, so that the House of Represen- 
tatives, voting by states, could elect one of the Whig candi- 
dates as president. Had their plan succeeded such strategy 
would probably have continued, and presidents would have 
been chosen by the House instead of by the people. 

The presidential contest of 1836 was not a national election, 
but a series of state campaigns. As 1836 dawned the two 
parties had about equal strength. In North Carolina, as in the 
United States, the people were about evenly divided between 
the two parties. 

In the state, as in the nation, the great personal popularity 
of Andrew Jackson gave the Democrats an important ad- 
vantage. 1 Since 1815 the people of North Carolina had dem- 
onstrated their hero worship of the victor of New Orleans, 
and in 1823 when a few leaders of the state asked the voters 
to support Jackson they found a ready response. 2 A group 

1 Willie P. Mangum to David L. Swain, December 22, 1833, Henry T. 
Shanks (ed.), The Papers of Willie Person Mangum, (Raleigh, State De- 
partment of Archives and History), II (1952), 52. Hereafter cited as 
Shanks, Mangum Papers. 

2 Albert R. Newsome, The Election of 182U in North Carolina, The James 
Sprunt Studies in History and Political Science (Chapel Hill, XXIII, 
1939), 20-39 and passim. Hereafter cited as Newsome, Election of 1824. 
Also see William S. Hoffmann, "Origins of the Jackson Party" (unpublish- 
ed thesis, University of Wisconsin, Madison, 1950), 17. 


32 The North Carolina Historical Review 

of politicians originally supporting South Carolina's John C. 
Calhoun had formed an organization called the People's 
party. When events outside of North Carolina caused the 
South Carolinian to postpone his presidential aspirations 
and seek the vice-presidency, the leaders of the People's 
party pledged themselves to support Jackson and Calhoun. 
The dominant politicians in the state supported William H. 
Crawford of Georgia for the presidency, but the electoral 
ticket of the People's party was victorious. It defeated the 
Georgian's ticket by 20,214 votes to 15,621. 3 Between 1824 
and 1828 most of Crawford's supporters somewhat reluc- 
tantly shifted to Jackson primarily because they considered 
him a lesser evil than John Quincy Adams. 4 In the election of 
1828, Jackson received 37,875 votes while Adams received 
only 13,918. 5 During Jackson's first term his popularity in- 
creased among North Carolinians. The former supporters 
of Crawford enthusiastically applauded the Maysville veto 
and Jackson's other state rights pronouncements and became 
loyal members of the Democratic party. 6 In 1832 Jackson 
won his greatest electoral victory in the state, receiving 
eighty-four and one-half per cent of the total vote. An 
electoral ticket for Jackson and Van Buren received 21,007 
votes, one for Henry Clay and John Sergeant received 4,563 
votes, and one for Jackson and Phillip Pendleton Barbour of 
Virginia received 3,855. 7 Although Jackson lost some sup- 
porters during his second term the admiration which the 
majority of people felt toward him continued. The Demo- 
crats realized that they could transfer some of Jackson's 
popularity to Martin Van Buren, but their chance of victory 
was not so great. 

The Whigs had many factors in their favor. Many respect- 
able leaders of the state, especially former Federalists, had 

8 Newsome, Election of 1824, 48-89 and passim. 

* William S. Hoffmann, "North Carolina Politics in the Jackson Period, 
1824-1837" (unpublished doctoral dissertation, University of North Caro- 
lina, Chapel Hill, 1953), 21-42. Hereafter cited as Hoffmann, "North Caro- 
lina Politics." 

6 Yadkin and Catawba Journal (Salisbury), December 9, 1828. 

6 Hoffmann, "North Carolina Politics," 65-91; William S. Hoffmann, 
"Andrew Jackson: State Rightist: The Case of the Georgia Indians," 
Tennessee Historical Quarterly (Nashville, December, 1952), XI, 329-334. 

7 North Carolina Journal (Fayetteville), November 7, 1832. 

The Election of 1836 in North Carolina 33 

supported Adams in 1828 and were the nucleus of the Whig 
Party. 8 In 1831, as a final act in the controversy concerning 
Peggy Eaton's social position, Jackson had asked for the 
resignation of Secretary of the Navy, John Branch. The 
ousted Secretary returned to North Carolina and declared 
open warfare on Martin Van Buren. He found many fol- 
lowers who were secret enemies of Jackson, who worked 
with him in organizing a new political party. 9 They promised 
to support Jackson for president and Barbour for vice-presi- 
dent. Sectional prejudice was aroused against Van Buren, 
and in the spring and early summer of 1832 this appeared 
to be the strongest group in the state. Due to Barbour's 
belated withdrawal and to their own association with nul- 
lification a very poor showing was made in the election. 10 
They remained together as an effective political organization, 
and their private hatred for the President was increased when 
Jackson took a strong nationalistic stand during the nullifi- 
cation controversy. 11 Although most of them had opposed the 
national bank on constitutional grounds, when Jackson trans- 
ferred federal funds from the national bank to state banks 
it served as a signal to join openly the anti- Jackson ranks. 
Together the Branch group and the original anti-Jackson 
men had more party journals than their rivals, and more 
important political leaders supported their cause. North 
Carolina was considered a doubtful state, and in many re- 
spects the state campaign was typical of the nation. 

Since early 1834 the North Carolina newspapers had been 
filled with discussions of partisan issues. The Whig poli- 
ticians and editors raised their voices in righteous indigna- 
tion at Jackson's removal of deposits from the national bank. 12 

8 Hoffmann, "North Carolina Politics," 45-50. 

9 Hoffmann, "North Carolina Politics," 92-110 ; John Branch to "A Gentle- 
man in this City," New Bern Spectator and Literary Journal (New Bern), 
May 21, 1831; John Branch to James Iredell, Washington, March 31, 1832, 
James Iredell Papers, Duke University Library, Durham, North Carolina. 

"Hoffmann, "North Carolina Politics," 111-133. 

"Hoffmann, "North Carolina Politics," 134-154. 

12 Raleigh Register, October 1, 22, 1833, quoting the Carolina Watchman 
(Salisbury); The Star (Raleigh), September 27, 1833; Lewis Williams to 
Edmund Jones, Washington, December 8, 1833, Edmund Jones Papers, 
Southern Historical Collection, University of North Carolina Library, 
Chapel Hill. 

34 The North Carolina Historical Review 

When the Senate censured the President for his actions the 
Whigs praised the body for its "courageous stand against 
executive usurpation" and Democrats denounced the Senate 
as supporters of a "monstrous institution." 13 When Jackson 
answered the censure with an official protest many Whigs 
likened this "additional usurpation" to a tyrant's message 
from the throne, but Democrats applauded and agreed with 
Jackson that the Senate had no constitutional right to pass 
the resolution of censure. 14 The opponents of Jackson com- 
pared his tyranny to that of George III and occasionally took 
the name, Whig, to signify their opposition to executive tyr- 
anny. 15 Generally, both parties continued to call themselves 
Republicans, and both insisted that they were defending 
Republican principles. 

The national bank called in loans and this seems to have 
been one factor in bringing on a depression. The Whigs de- 
nounced Jackson for not restoring the deposits and thereby 
ending the depression. The North Carolina Democrats 
denied that any depression existed and declared that the 
state had never been more prosperous. 16 The Whig voice 
was loud, and Democratic Senator Bedford Brown declared: 

Every day the accents of distress . . . sounded . . . Different kinds 
of distress prevail. . . . Not among the least distressed was that 
class of politician . . . distressed because their opponents were 
in power, and they themselves were out of power. 17 

Brown's support of the President's policy caused the Whigs 
to try to secure his removal. Mass meetings were called 
which instructed Brown to support restoration of the de- 

18 Western Carolinian (Salisbury), March 15, 1834; Free Press (Tar- 
boro), April 13, 1834. 

u Western Carolinian, May 17, 1834; Raleigh Register, April 29, 1834; 
Miners and Farmers Journal (Charlotte), May 3, 1834; Free Press, 
May 4, 1834. 

""Sidney" in Raleigh Register, December 23, 1834. 

M Western Carolinian, March 22, 1834; Nathaniel Macon to Martin Van 
Buren, May 23, 1834, Elizabeth McPherson, "Letters from North Caro- 
linians to Martin Van Buren," North Carolina Historical Review (Ra- 
leigh), XV (January, 1938), 174; Bedford Brown to Martin Van Buren, 
September 24, 1834, William K. Boyd, "Some Selections from the Cor- 
respondence of Bedford Brown," Trinity College Historical Society, His- 
torical Papers (Durham), VI (1926), 88. 

"Brown's speech in the Senate, Raleigh Register, January 21, 1835. 

The Election of 1836 in North Carolina 35 

posits or resign from the Senate. Whig Senator Willie P. 
Mangum presented one such resolution to the United States 
Senate and referred to it as the voice of North Carolina. 
Brown declared that he would obey the real will of his 
constituents or resign. He pointed out that the meeting had 
been called by a disappointed aspirant and that only a hand- 
ful of partisans had been present. The Whig press called 
Brown's statement a denial of the right of instructions and 
declared that his refusal to obey made him unfit to hold 
public office. During the legislative elections of 1834 the 
Whigs urged all men who believed in the "Republican prin- 
ciple of instructions" to vote only for legislators who opposed 
Brown's re-election. 18 

The Democrats could also play the game. They in turn 
urged the voters to cast their ballots only for candidates who 
pledged themselves to support Brown. 19 The Democrats 
gained a slight majority and succeeded in re-electing 
Brown. 20 After a bitter debate the legislature passed a reso- 
lution declaring that a Senator should support instructions 
from the legislature or resign. They then instructed the two 
Senators to support a resolution expunging the Senate's 
censure of Jackson. 21 Brown, of course, already favored the 
expunging resolution and needed no instructions. Mangum 
refused to obey, and fearing that his resignation would give 
the Democrats control of the Senate he refused to retire. 22 
He declared that a Senator should obey instructions from 
the people or resign, but he denied that the legislature was 
the proper body to speak for the people. 23 Until Mangum 
finally resigned and was replaced by Robert Strange— three 
months before his term expired the Democrats constantly 
attacked the "disobedient" Senator for his action. 24 The 

M Miners and Farmers Journal, March 1, July 12, 1834; Carolina Watch- 
man, March 8, 1834; Raleigh Register, February 25, March 18, April 15, 
1834; Copy of Burke County Resolutions, March 27, 1834, Shanks, Mangum 
Papers, II, 54. 

18 North Carolina, Standard (Raleigh), November 7, 14, 21, 1834. 

20 Raleigh Register, November 25, 1834. 

21 Raleigh Register, January 27, 1835. 

^Willie P. Mangum to William A. Graham, Washington, December 17, 
1834, William Alexander Graham Papers, State Department of Archives 
and History, Raleigh North Carolina. 

23 Mangum's speech in the Senate, Hillsboro Recorder, March 20, 1835. 

24 North Carolina Standard, June 11, 1835, and passim. 

36 The North Carolina Historical Review 

Whigs, forgetting the origin of the instruction fight, declared 
that the instructions were part of the "J ac ksonian reign of 
terror" to put down all who differed with them. 25 Neither 
side gained or lost much support because of the instruction 
battle, but it kept partisans on both sides active and aroused. 

In 1835 the Whigs shifted the emphasis in their attack. 
National land policy had long been a minor issue. In 1833 
Jackson vetoed a bill calling for annual distribution of the 
proceeds from federal land sales to all the states, but this 
caused only a feeble protest from the anti-Jackson men. 26 
At that time Mangum had not openly broken with Jackson 
and had twice voted against the measure. Realizing that 
distribution would be popular in North Carolina and would 
embarrass the Democrats, he wrote Governor David L. 
Swain urging that the legislature instruct him to support the 
measure. He could therefore change his vote in obedience 
to instructions and not be condemned for inconsistency. 27 
Although Mangum was destined to receive instructions of 
another nature, Swain did his part well. 

In his inaugural message of 1834, Swain called distri- 
bution a panacea for all of North Carolina's ills, and the 
Whigs became ardent champions of the measure. 28 In Jan- 
uary, 1835, the lower house of the legislature passed a reso- 
lution in favor of distribution, but the Democratic majority 
in the Senate refused their assent. 29 The Whigs constantly 
denounced the Democrats for blocking the distribution reso- 
lution, and Whig leader William J. Alexander issued a cir- 
cular averring that the action of the Democrats had cost 
the people of the state five-million dollars annually. 30 At the 
next session of the legislature the house again assented to a 
Whig resolution favoring distribution, while the senate pass- 

25 Samuel Fleming's speech in the state legislature, Raleigh Register, 
December 23, 1834. 

23 New Bern Spectator and Literary Journal, March 15, 1833; Abraham 
Rencher's "circular" in The Star, May 10, 1833; Lewis Williams, To the 
Citizens of the Thirteenth Congressional District of North Carolina, 
Washington, February 12, 1833, 14. Hereafter cited as Williams, Citizens 
of the Thirteenth District. 

^Willie P. Mangum to David L. Swain, December 22, 1833, Shanks, 
Mangum Papers, II, 54. 

28 Swain's inaugural address, Hillsboro Recorder, November 28, 1834. 

29 North Carolina Standard, January 16, 1835. 

30 Raleigh Register, March 10, 1835, quoting extracts from Alexander's 
circular, Western Carolinian, January 24, 1835. 

The Election of 1836 in North Carolina 37 

ed a resolution which favored the distribution of an "un- 
avoidable surplus" only. 31 The Whigs again condemned the 
Democrats for refusing to consent to annual distribution and 
repeated the arguments of the preceding year. 32 Distribution 
was popular in North Carolina, especially in the western 
part of the state. As Whig leaders pointed out, it would give 
the state millions of dollars annually which could be spent 
for much needed roads, schools, and railroads and would not 
cost the people one cent additional taxes. Whigs claimed 
that the Democrats were going to give the lands outright 
to the western states in order to bribe those states into voting 
for Van Buren. 33 The Democrats fervently denied this and 
could argue that distribution was unconstitutional and that 
the federal government instead of distributing surplus funds 
should lower the tariff. 34 They could make little headway, 
however, against the popular Whig advocates. Democratic 
opposition to distribution greatly aided the Whigs in the 
national campaign. 

The Whigs of North Carolina considered many presiden- 
tial candidates. Henry Clay was the favorite of the original 
anti- Jackson men, but national party strategy kept Clay from 
entering the race. 35 Nullifiers led by Charles Fisher wanted to 
nominate John C. Calhoun, but Willie P. Mangum succeeded 
in convincing them that Calhoun's unpopularity would throw 
North Carolina into the Van Buren camp. 36 In the fall of 
1834, the Raleigh Register, organ of the original anti- Jackson 

81 Raleigh Register, December 22, 29, 1835. 

82 Raleigh Register, February 2, 1836, quoting the Fayetteville Observer, 
Williams, Citizens of the Thirteenth District, May 17, 1836. 

33 Williams, Citizens of the Thirteenth District, Washington, February, 
18, 1835, 2-5; Abraham Rencher, To the Citizens of the Tenth Congressional 
District, Washington, March 6, 1835, 1-2 ; Edmund Deberry, To the Freemen 
of the Counties of Anson, Richmond, Cumberland, Moore, and Montgomery, 
Washington, February 28, 1835; Edmund Deberry Papers, Southern His- 
torical Collection, University of North Carolina Library, Chapel Hill; 
Swain's annual message, Raleigh Register, November 24, 1835. 

34 North Carolina Standard, February 6 and December 15, 1835, quoting 
Richard Dobbs Spaight's inaugural address; Thomas Hall, To the Qualified 
Voters of the Third Congressional District, Washington, March 6, 1835. 

85 Raleigh Register, October 22, 1833; New Bern Spectator and Literary 
Journal, March 15, 1833. 

38 Willie P. Mangum to John Beard, Philadelphia, October 7, 1834, Fisher 
Papers, Southern Historical Collection, University of North Carolina 
Library, Chapel Hill. 

38 The North Carolina Historical Review 

men, and the Carolina Watchman (Salisbury), both urged 
that a state convention nominate a "Southern candidate" 
for president. The Western Carolinian ( Salisbury ) , organ of 
the milliners, and the New Bern Spectator and Literary 
Journal warned that such a nomination might divide the 
party, so a convention was not held. 37 The Western Carolin- 
ian seconded the nomination by a New York paper of North 
Carolina's own, Willie P. Mangum, and the Fayetteville Ob- 
server declared that another North Carolinian, William Gas- 
ton of New Bern, was the ideal candidate. 38 James Graham, 
a Whig Congressman from Rutherford County, wanted the 
state to support a Democrat, Thomas Ruffin, Chief Justice 
of the State Supreme Court. He believed that if Ruffin could 
secure an appointment as Secretary of the Treasury, the 
North Carolinian would be able to defeat Van Buren and 
become President of the United States. For different reasons 
the state's Democratic manager, Romulus M. Saunders, was 
working to secure the appointment for Ruffin, but Jackson 
named another man for the position. 39 The one candidate 
who won general approval from the state Whigs was Hugh 
Lawson White of Tennessee. 

White was acceptable to all factions of the party. In 
September, 1834, the Western Carolinian commented favor- 
ably on his nomination. 40 In January, 1835, the Alabama 
legislature nominated White, and soon the Whig press was 
filled with praise for the Tennessee Senator. On April 3, 1835, 
citizens of Statesville held the first White meeting in North 
Carolina. They declared that a southerner should be presi- 
dent and recommended White highly. 41 Similar meetings 
followed in other towns. The Raleigh Register suddenly 
dropped its nationalistic tone and declared, "The cause of 

37 Raleigh Register, September 2, 1834, quoting the Carolina Watchman, 
September 20, 1834. 

38 Western Carolinian, September 30, December 6, 1834, quoting the 
Fayetteville Observer. 

89 James Graham to William Alexander Graham, Washington, January 5, 
1834, William Alexander Graham Papers, Southern Historical Collection, 
University of North Carolina Library, Chapel Hill; Romulus M. Saunders 
to Thomas Ruffin, October 15, November 4, 1833, J. G. de R. Hamilton, 
The Papers of Thomas Ruffin, 4 volumes (Raleigh: North Carolina His- 
torical Commission, 1918, 1920), II, 98, 105-107. 

40 Western Carolinian, September 27, 1834. 

41 Raleigh Register, February 2, April 14, 1835. 

The Election of 1836 in North Carolina 39 

Judge White is the cause of the South." 42 On December 22, 
1835, Whig legislators and others held a meeting at Raleigh 
and officially nominated White. 43 As 1836 opened, Whigs 
in almost every county were holding meetings and selecting 
delegates to name electors pledged to White. 

The Democrats also began the contest early. In February, 
1835, the North Carolina Standard (Raleigh) the leading 
Van Buren organ, called on all Democrats to support the 
candidate of the national convention. 44 As in 1832, the 
enemies of Van Buren assailed the national convention. It 
was called a "caucus of officeholders," and the phrase became 
a greatly overworked cliche. 45 The Democrats defended the 
convention, and sometimes in county and district conven- 
tions which met to select delegates to the convention, they 
also named presidential electors. 46 The venerable Nathaniel 
Macon was named to their electoral ticket, and his name was 
an advantage to the party. 47 The Democrats were not going 
to lose the election through lack of energy. 

Most of the state's Van Buren men preferred William C. 
Rives of Virginia as candidate for vice-president. In late 
1834 the North Carolina Sentinel, a Democratic paper in 
New Bern, named Rives as its choice. 48 Romulus Saunders 
and Robert Strange, leaders of the state delegation at the 
Baltimore Convention, both favored the Virginian. At the 
convention Strange in an attempt to defeat the favored can- 
didate, Richard M. Johnson, proposed that a two-thirds 
majority be required for a nomination. The convention as- 
sented to Strange's motion, and he and Saunders persuaded 
the minority of the North Carolina delegation to vote for 
Rives on the first ballot. Saunders and Strange promised 

42 Raleigh Register, December 22, 1835. 

43 Raleigh Register, December 29, 1835. 

44 North Carolina Standard, February 13, 1835. 

45 Western Carolinian, May 16, 1836. The phrase appears four times on 
one page of the May 16 issue. 

46 North Carolina Standard, May 15, 1835. 

47 Clarence C. Norton, The Democratic Party in Ante-Bellum North 
Carolina, 1835-1861, volume XXXI of The James Sprunt Historical Studies 
(Chapel Hill, 1930), 86. Hereafter cited as Norton, The Democratic Party. 

48 North Carolina Standard, January 2, 1835, quoting the North Carolina 
Sentinel (New Bern). 

40 The North Carolina Historical Review 

to support the nominee of the convention. On the first ballot 
Johnson received four votes more than the necessary two- 
thirds and won the vice-presidential nomination. Saunders 
made a speech and admitted that he, personally, preferred 
Rives but urged all Democrats to support the Van Buren- 
Johnson ticket. Although North Carolina Democrats con- 
tinued to say nice things about Rives they gave Johnson 
wholehearted support. 49 

The state meeting which had nominated White had failed 
to name a vice-presidential candidate. Shortly after North 
Carolina Whigs made their nomination, Maryland Whigs 
also nominated White and named John Tyler as his running 
mate. Tyler accepted the nomination, and North Carolina 
Whig leaders added his name to their ticket. Many Whig 
meetings passed resolutions praising Tyler. Meanwhile Rives' 
friends had gotten control of the Virginia legislature and 
instructed Tyler to support the expunging resolution. Tyler 
refused, but, unlike Willie P. Mangum, he accepted the 
doctrine of instructions and resigned. Weston Gales, editor 
of the Raleigh Register, called Tylers resignation "the 
strongest rebuke to Whig principles," and he called on those 
who approved Mangum's course to revoke Tyler's nomina- 
tion. 50 The North Carolina Standard stated that Tyler was 
to be dropped at the "mandate" of the party organ and com- 
mented that Gales' reasoning proved that Whig principles 
meant ignoring the will of constituents. 51 The Star (Raleigh), 
organ of the states rights branch of the Whig Party, sup- 
ported Tyler, and although many Whigs hoped that the 
Virginian would withdraw, few were willing to follow the 
Registers suggestion and revoke the nomination. Even 
Editor Gales, calling Tyler's resignation an honest error, ac- 
quiesced in the Virginian's continuance on the ticket. 52 The 
vice-presidency was not very important. 

49 North Carolina Standard, June 5, 1835, quoting the North Carolina 
Sentinel, June 5, 1835. 

50 Raleigh Register, March 8, 1836; Weston R. Gales to Willie P. Mangum, 
January 22, 1836, Shanks, Mangum Papers, II, 381. 

51 North Carolina Standard, March 10, 1836. 

The Election of 1836 in North Carolina 41 

The North Carolina Whigs were more concerned with 
selecting a popular candidate for governor than for vice- 
president. The State Constitution had been amended the 
previous year, and in 1836 the governor for the first time 
was to be elected by the people. Four Whig candidates were 
prominently mentioned for the position. The Examiner 
(Oxford) suggested that Mangum be the party's candidate, 
but he was vulnerable on several accounts and did not 
make the race. 53 The Carolina Watchman named ex-Federal- 
ist William B. Meares of New Hanover County, but the 
Whigs of that county felt Edward B. Dudley would be a 
stronger candidate. 54 The National Republican wing of the 
party preferred Meares, but realized that his Federalism 
would make him vulnerable and accepted Dudley as a 
stronger candidate. 55 Thomas Polk of Salisbury was the 
choice of the Western Whigs, but he made a plea for party 
unity and stepped aside in favor of Dudley. 56 The Register 
called for a state meeting of White supporters to make a 
nomination for governor, and the assemblage unanimously 
named Edward B. Dudley as its candidate. 57 

Dudley accepted the nomination and showed that he in- 
tended to make sectional opposition to Van Buren the chief 
issue of the campaign. In his letter of acceptance he de- 
clared: "Mr. Van Buren is not one of us. He is a Northern 
man ... in soul, in principle, and in action." 58 He said 
that Van Buren was an abolitionist who had supported the 
anti-slavery provisions of the Missouri Compromise and had 
granted Congress the power to abolish slavery. Dudley had 
been a member of the Branch group in 1832, and he repeated 
the charges made during the ill-fated Barbour campaign. 

52 Raleigh Register, March 22, 1836; James Simmons to Willie P. Man- 
gum, March 9, 1836; Robert Gilliam to Willie P. Mangum, April 1, 1836, 
Shanks, Mangum Papers, II, 403, 417. 

53 North Carolina Standard, December 15, 1835. 

54 North Carolina Standard, March 10, 1836; Raleigh Register, November 
3, 1835, quoting the Carolina Watchman. 

05 Weston R. Gales to Willie P. Mangum, January 22, 1836, Shanks, 
Mangum Papers, II, 381. 

69 Western Carolinian, January 16, 1836. 

57 Raleigh Register, January 26, February 9, 1836. 

68 Edward B. Dudley to Weston Gales and others, February 17, 1836, 
Raleigh Register, February 23, 1836. 

42 The North Carolina Historical Review 

He was advised to tour the state, tell anecdotes concerning 
his own service in the War of 1812, and avoid controversial 
issues. 59 He traveled widely, spoke at public banquets, and 
carried on an active campaign. His early championship of 
state internal improvements and his campaign pleas for 
public education aided his candidacy. 60 

The Democrats attacked Dudley on several counts. Lauch- 
lin Bethune, a former Congressman from Fayetteville, called 
a meeting and denounced Dudley's letter of acceptance as 
"illiberal, anti-republican, unconstitutional in spirit, and in- 
sulting to the pride and patriotism of the state." 61 The 
Democrats charged Dudley with deliberately stirring up 
sectional hostility. 62 Democratic editors published a letter 
Dudley had written in 1830 opposing forceful removal of 
two thousand Cherokees from North Carolina. They twisted 
his words and averred that Dudley "thought it the duty of 
all poor men in North Carolina to give their daughters in 
marriage to the Indian savage." 63 Only Democratic partisans 
could believe such an absurd charge, and Dudley was not 
harmed by his defense of the friendly Indians. 

The Democrats had little choice in naming their candidate 
for governor. Their party in the legislature had just selected 
Richard Dobbs Spaight for governor, and they were virtually 
forced to recommend his re-election. In March the Standard 
endorsed his nomination as "springing spontaneously . . . 
from the Democracy of the state." 64 Spaight was a poor 
campaigner. He refused invitations to public banquets and 
did not travel extensively over the state: he was trying to 
create the illusion that he would neither seek nor decline 
public office. 65 Most candidates tried to make their entrance 

59 James Graham to William A. Graham, Washington, February 7, 1836, 
William Alexander Graham Papers, University of North Carolina. 

60 Raleigh Register, June 30, 1836, quoting the New Bern Spectator and 
Literary Journal. 

61 Fayetteville Observer, March 24, 1836. 

62 North Carolina Standard, March 3, 1836. 

63 "One of the People" in Raleigh Register, September 6, 1836 quoting the 
Carolina Gazette (Rutherfordton) ; John I. Wright to David S. Reid, 
Rockingham Springs, July 30, 1836, David S. Reid Papers, State Depart- 
ment of Archives and History, Raleigh. 

64 North Carolina Standard, March 10, 1836. 

65 North Carolina Standard, March 31, 1836. 

The Election of 1836 in North Carolina 43 

into a campaign appear as a reluctant willingness to serve, 
but in the case of avid, office-seeker Richard Dobbs Spaight 
it was most ineffective. 

Spaight was extremely vulnerable in the congressional 
district which was composed of Rutherford, Buncombe, 
Burke, Haywood, Macon, and Yancey counties. He was 
linked with David Newland, the unsuccessful candidate in 
the congressional election of 1835. Newland had lost the 
election by only fourteen votes. 66 The state law required 
voters to cast their ballots in the county of their residence, 
and Newland secured depositions to prove that many of the 
votes for the successful candidate, James Graham, came 
from people voting outside their county. Newland carried 
his evidence to Washington. He had once announced his 
support of White but intimated that if the presidential elec- 
tion was to be decided by the House of Representatives he 
would vote for Van Buren. Many people believed that Web- 
ster, Harrison, and White would receive enough electoral 
votes to throw the election to the House and that Graham's 
vote could keep Van Buren from becoming president. The 
Democrats had a majority in the House and voted to unseat 
Graham. 67 Their action appeared to Whigs and non partisans 
as an unjust political decision made only to aid Van Buren's 
presidential ambitions. If the election had gone to the House, 
a pledge to vote with his district by Augustine H. Shepperd, 
a popular Whig Congressman from a Democratic consti- 
tuency, would have caused North Carolina's vote to be given 
to Van Buren. 68 Although they had voted to unseat Graham, 
a majority of congressmen would not vote to seat Newland, 
and they requested the governor to call a special election 
to fill the vacancy. Instead of calling it immediately Spaight 
issued a call to make the special congressional election coin- 
cide with the next general election. The people of the district 

66 North Carolina Standard, August 20, 1835. 

67 Raleigh Register, March 8, 1836. 

68 Free Press, September 3, 1836; Ebenezer Pettigrew to John H. Bryan, 
March 24, 1836, John H. Bryan Collections, State Department of Archives 
and History, Raleigh, volume, III. 

44 The North Carolina Historical Review 

blamed the Democratic governor because they had no rep- 
resentative. 69 

The Democrats had made a strategic error. The Whigs 
charged that Newland had persuaded Spaight to delay the 
election. They asserted that Newland realized he had no 
chance to win immediately, but if the election was deferred 
the aid of the Democratic party would give him a better 
opportunity. 70 Newland's action was very unpopular in the 
district, and the Democrats suffered by linking their cause 
with his. Some Democrats promised Graham their vote be- 
cause they said they could not "stand a turncoat." 71 Newland 
realized his own unpopularity and considered withdrawing, 
while Graham's popularity increased with four months of 
strenuous campaigning. 72 Graham won the election by a 
majority of 1,614 votes, and in that district Spaight received 
1,491 fewer votes than Dudley. 73 In 1835 the district had 
sent a Democratic majority to the legislature, but in August, 
1836 elections the people elected ten Whigs and only four 
Democrats. 74 A part of the shift was caused by the revision 
of the constitution which increased the representation in the 
Whig strongholds of Burke, Rutherford, and Buncombe 
counties. The roles of Newland and Spaight in the contested 
election nevertheless, had proven a major disaster for the 

Though his greatest victory was in the mountain area, 
Edward B. Dudley showed great strength throughout the 
state. He defeated Spaight by approximately five thousand 
votes. He trailed in the East by about three thousand votes, 

69 James Graham to William A. Graham, Washington, April 4, 1836, 
William A. Graham Papers, University of North Carolina Library; North 
Carolina Standard, April 14, 1836. 

70 Raleigh Register, September 6, 1836, quoting the Fayetteville Ob- 

71 James Graham to William A. Graham, Rutherfordton, May 7, 1836, 
William A. Graham Papers, University of North Carolina Library. 

72 Joseph W. D. Graham to William A. Graham, Elm Wood Farm, April 
21, 1836, James Graham to William A. Graham, Washington, May 7, 1836, 
William A. Graham Papers, University of North Carolina Library. 

73 Raleigh Register, August 23, November 22, 1836. 

74 James Graham to William A. Graham, Rutherfordton, August 20, 1836, 
William A. Graham Papers, University of North Carolina Library. 

The Election of 1836 in North Carolina 45 

but had an eight thousand majority in the West. 75 The Whigs 
considered Dudley's victory a great party triumph, but it 
was due in large part to personal popularity and active cam- 
paigning. 76 Edward B. Dudley ran well ahead of his party. 

In the contests for the state legislature almost every can- 
didate campaigned on national issues. Personal popularity 
still played an important part, but comparatively few men 
won elections in counties which disapproved of their national 
stand. Both parties had put forth great efforts to acquire a 
majority in the legislature. County meetings named candi- 
dates as friends of White or Van Buren, and every effort 
was made to get the strongest candidates to make the race. 77 
The campaign was arduous, and there were few men able 
to sit back and win on their reputations. James Graham even 
demanded that his highly respected brother cut short his 
honeymoon and "go among the people." 78 If the old consti- 
tution had not been amended the Democrats would have 
won by a sizable majority, and the provision which gave 
each county at least one member of the House of Commons 
still left them a slight advantage. The Whigs won a majority 
of two in the Senate, while the Democrats had the same 
majority in the House. 79 The August elections indicated that 
the Whigs had a slight majority in the state, but by no means 
gave a clear indication that the people of the state strongly 
opposed Martin Van Buren. 

The Whigs, nevertheless, claimed that Dudley's victory 
was positive proof that Judge White would carry the state. 
They placed more emphasis on Dudley's charge that Van 
Buren was an abolitionist and consequently lessened their 
association with distribution. The Democrats were more ac- 
curate in their analysis of the campaign. Bedford Brown 

75 Raleigh Register, November 22, 1836. The Register's figures give Dud- 
ley a majority of 5,007. The official returns give him a majority of 4,043, 
but three counties were not counted in the official returns. The returns from 
the three counties would have resulted in a majority of 4,729, Free Press, 
December 17, 1836. 

79 Raleigh Register, September 6, 1836. 

77 Hillsboro Recorder, February 29, August 16, 23, 30, 1836; Lewis 
Williams to William A. Graham, Washington, April 1, 1836, William A. 
Graham Papers, University of North Carolina Library. 

78 James Graham to William A. Graham, Vesuvius Furnace, May 15, 1836, 
William A. Graham Papers, University of North Carolina Library. 

79 Free Press, August 27, 1836. 

46 The North Carolina Historical Review 

wrote Van Buren that Spaight's defeat was due in part to 
local causes, in part to Democratic opposition to distribution, 
and especially due to "the gross falsehoods spread abroad 
as to the motives of Democrats who unseated Graham." 
Brown had high hopes for victory in November and prom- 
ised: "our party . . . will go to the contest, without that san- 
guine expectation of success, which often proves fatal . . . 
and at the same time without despondence, which dis- 
courages exertion." 80 

The Whigs tried their utmost to portray Van Buren as 
an enemy of the South. They charged that the one principle 
upon which "he has always acted was opposition to South- 
ern interests. " 81 They declared that he had supported De- 
Witt Clinton instead of James Madison in 1812. They pointed 
to his vote on the tariff of 1828 and called him a champion 
of protection. They pointed to his vote to extend the Cum- 
berland road and called him an advocate of federal internal 
improvements. They declared he had supported free Negro 
suffrage in New York. 82 The Democrats answered that Van 
Buren was a moderate on the tariff issue and was an enemy 
of internal improvements. They charged that Judge White 
was a friend of the free Negro and in 1823 had placed his 
arms around one and led him to the ballot box. 83 The Demo- 
cratic organ insisted that Van Buren had worked to curtail 
free Negro voting, and all of his views were "in accordance 
with the interest of slaveholders." 84 

The Whigs declared that on the subject of slavery a can- 
didate "must not only agree with us," but "be above sus- 
pision." 85 To prove that Van Buren was not above suspicion 
they wrote letters asking the two candidates to state their 
position on abolition of slavery in the District of Columbia. 
White, as expected, declared that Congress had no right to 

^Bedford Brown to Martin Van Buren, October 11, 1836, McPherson, 
"Letters to Van Buren," 770. 

81 Raleigh Register, August 2, 1836, quoting the Miners and Farmers 

82 Raleigh Register, February 16, 1836, quoting the Miners and Farmers 
Journal; Hillsboro Recorder, October 26, 1836. 

83 North Carolina Standard, November 10, 1836. 

84 North Carolina Standard, July 10, 1835. 

85 Raleigh Register, August 2, 1836, quoting the Miners and Farmers 

The Election of 1836 in North Carolina 47 

abolish slavery. 86 Van Buren called abolition in the District 
inexpedient and declared that it would violate the spirit 
of the agreement between the federal government and the 
states of Maryland and Virginia. He wrote, "The slave ques- 
tion must be left to the slave holding states themselves with- 
out molestation . . . from any quarter." 87 He would not 
say that Congress had no power to interfere. The Whigs 
used the negative phrase to declare that Van Buren conceded 
the power to emancipate and asserted his views differed 
none from "Tappan, Garrison, and Company." 88 

The Whigs charged Van Buren's running mate with a sin 
worse than abolition. It was well known that Johnson lived 
with a Negro mistress, but the Whigs were not satisfied 
merely to charge him with immorality. They constantly de- 
nounced him as an amalgamationist. At a banquet in Onslow 
County a Whig partisan offered this toast: 

. . . Martin Van Buren, an abolitionist and Richard M. Johnson, 
an amalgamationist. ... It would be more congenial to their 
habits and conformable to their principles — the one to preside 
over the destinies of Liberia, the other to multiply and increase 
his subjects. 89 

Toward the close of the campaign Starling Gunn of Caswell 
County issued a circular emphasizing Johnson's private life. 
He charged that Johnson's moral character was 

. . . stained by the deepest and blackest vices known to moral law. 
For while others merely insist in theory upon the equality of 
blacks with the whites and the propriety of amalgamating the 
two races, he has reduced their principles to practice by taking 
to his embraces a NEGRO WENCH, and making her the wife 
of his bosom and the mother of his children. 90 

The circular made the rounds of the press but did the Demo- 
crats little harm. The Whigs had failed to learn that excessive 
personal abuse does the dispenser more harm than good, 
and the voters of Gvmn's county would cast 1,067 votes for 

89 Hugh Lawson White to John Timberlake and others, May 2, 1836, 
Raleigh Register, June 14, 1836. 

87 Martin Van Buren to Junius Amis and others, March 6, 1836, Free 
Press, March 26, 1836. 

88 Raleigh Register, July 5, 1836, quoting the Halifax Minerva. 

89 Raleigh Register, September 20, 1836, quoting the New Bern Spectator 
and Literary Journal. 

90 Starling Gunn, "To the Voters of Caswell County," Hillsboro Recorder, 
October 21, 1836. 

48 The North Carolina Historical Review 


Van Buren and Johnson and only 116 for White and Tyler 
In North Carolina the questionable sex life of the vice-presi- 
dential candidate cost the Democrats few votes. 

While the Whigs were doing their utmost to arouse sec- 
tional feelings against the "abolitionist and the amalgama- 
tionist," the Democrats were preaching unionism. They tried 
to associate the Whigs with the nullifiers, and almost every 
well known North Carolinian who had sympathized with 
nullification was supporting White. The Democrats asserted 
that White's supporters wanted a pretext to dissolve the 
union. 92 Bedford Brown urged the voters to oppose the sec- 
tional candidate and defeat the opposition's scheme of 
dividing North and South. He declared that only through 
Republican ascendancy had the "Union been preserved," 
and he pleaded with all loyal citizens to support the national 
candidate. 93 

The Democrats had one important issue in their favor. 
In 1836 gold mining ranked second to agriculture among 
North Carolina's industries. 94 In 1834 Democrats secured 
passage of a law to mint gold dollars, an act that was very 
popular in North Carolina. The Democrats declared that the 
law showed that the administration had provided more 
stable currency than the "rag currency" of the national 
bank. 95 The Whigs asserted that gold coinage was less prac- 
tical than United States bank notes, yet they admitted that 
the act would uphold the price of North Carolina gold. 96 

In the winter of 1835 Thomas H. Benton introduced a 
bill to establish three mints in the South, one to be at Char- 
lotte, the center of the state's gold mining region. This would 
mean much to the people of the area; gold could be sold 
directly to the mint with less danger of theft; transportation 
expenses would be lessened; and a ready market would 
always be available. When the bill was before Congress the 

91 Raleigh Register, November 22, 1836. 

92 North Carolina Standard, November 12, 1836. 

93 Bedford Brown to James Rainey and others, September 17, 1836, Free 
Press, September 21, 1836. 

94 Fletcher M. Green, "Gold Mining: A Forgotten Industry of Ante- 
Bellum North Carolina," North Carolina Historical Review, (January, 
April, 1937), XIV, 1-19, 135-155. 

06 North Carolina Standard, February 11, 1836. 

98 Carolina Watchman, July 12, 1834. 

The Election of 1836 in North Carolina 4& 

Standard told readers that Democrats weife'trying to; secure 
passage of the bill but Henry Clay and the Whigs were 
trying to defeat it. 97 Both Willie P. Mangum and Bedford 
Brown made speeches defending the bill, and it became 
law. 98 The Register insisted that southern Whigs were re- 
sponsible for passage of the law, and the Western Caro- 
linian gave Calhoun the credit. 99 The Standard would not 
let the opposition take credit for the measure and pointed 
out that in the Senate thirteen of seventeen Democrats sup- 
ported the bill while only ten of the twenty-five Whigs gave 
it their vote. 100 As the election drew near the mint was almost 
ready to begin operation; the Democrats commented favor- 
ably on the developments of the institution and reminded 
readers that their party had brought it to North Carolina. 101 

Toward the close of the campaign the Democrats loudly 
warned against the possibility of an election by the House 
of Representatives. In early October they issued a pamphlet 
emphasizing that if the people of North Carolina voted for 
White they would be doing "all that is in their power to do 
towards preventing an election of President by the peo- 
ple." 102 They pointed out that 148 electoral votes were need- 
ed to win the election, and even if White should carry every 
state where he was running he would receive only ninety-four 
votes. They asserted that the Whigs had no intention of 
electing White president, and argued that if the new presi- 
dent were elected by the House he would owe his election, 
not to the people, but to scheming politicians at Washington. 
Every issue of the Standard denounced the "pie-bald party" 
and insisted that the Whigs had made a "tool" of "poor 
dottering old Judge White" in order to transfer the election 
to the House. 103 

During the final month of the campaign Democrats "ex- 
posed" a plan of North Carolina Whigs to transfer the vote 
of the state to William Henry Harrison. Joseph Seawell Jones, 

97 North Carolina Standard, February 20, 1835. 

98 North Carolina Standard, March 6, 27, 1835. 

99 Raleigh Register, March 18, 1835; Western Carolinian, April 25, 1835. 

100 North Carolina Standard, March 27, 1836. 
ioi North Carolina Standard, January 28, 1836. 

102 William H. Haywood, Jr., and others, "An Address to the Freemen of 
North Carolina," quoted in the Free Press, October 15, 1836. 

103 North Carolina Standard, October 13, 1836. 

50 The North Carolina Historical Review 

a young Whig, who liked to exaggerate his own importance, 
was visiting in New York City and attended a banquet honor- 
ing Harrison. Jones announced that North Carolina Whigs 
would support Harrison if White could not be elected. An 
observer reported his comment to a New York newspaper, 
and North Carolina Democrats spotted the notice and gave 
it wide publicity. The Standard identified Jones as a his- 
torian who had violently denounced Jefferson and hence was 
good company for "federalist- Whigs." Editor White asked: 

Will the . . . Whigs and Nullifiers of North Carolina thank this 
. . . representative for letting "the cat out of the wallet" — for 
blabbing forth over his cups what his fellow Whigs at home 
are making such efforts to conceal — for revealing the secret that 
the nullifiers and their allies . . . are ready and willing to go for 
Harrison, the notorious emancipationist, the tariffite and corrup- 
tion bank advocate? . . . That Mr. Jones while puffed up with 
flattery and mellowed with wine has told the truth about his 
party, every intelligent politician . . . knows full well. 104 

Philo White concluded that Jones' remarks constituted posi- 
tive proof that the Whig electors intended to vote for Har- 

The Whig Central Committee denounced the Standard's 
charge as a "Base Calumny, wholly destitute of truth." 105 
But the damage was already done. Even had Jones not 
"let the cat out of the wallet," it was still logical that Harrison 
would be the second choice of the Whigs, and many intel- 
ligent non-partisans realized that to vote for White would 
increase the likelihood of Harrison or Webster becoming 
president. The Free Press (Tarboro), declared, "The people 
now see that White has no chance to be elected, and they 
will not throw votes away on him to help Harrison— a man 
who longs to see the day when the sun will not shine on a 
negro slave." 106 Although Harrison was no more of an abo- 
litionist than Van Buren he too, was a northern man, and 
the political effect of the sectional prejudice which the Whigs 
had tried so hard to arouse was greatly lessened. The Demo- 
crats had presented convincing arguments that White could 

104 North Carolina Standard, November 3, 1836. Jones was the author of 
A Defence of the Revolutionary History of North Carolina from the As- 
persions of Mr. Jefferson (Raleigh, 1834). 

105 Raleigh Register, November 8, 1836. 
*» Free Press, November 5, 1836. 

The Election of 1836 in North Carolina 51 

not be elected, and many men who favored him stayed away 
from the polls. 

Almost ten thousand fewer people voted in November 
than had voted in August. By a vote of 29,910 to 23,626 the 
people of North Carolina voted for Van Buren electors. 107 
The Whigs blamed apathy and overconfidence for their de- 
feat and insisted that "party drilling" was responsible for the 
Democratic victory. 108 The Democrats did have an effective 
organization, but probably no better than the Whigs. One 
factor in determining the result was that a large percentage 
of the voters in North Carolina were unwilling to follow a 
sectional party; and Van Buren's victory, in a sense, was a 
triumph of unionism over southern sectionalism. Yet the 
realization that White could not possibly be elected by the 
people was primarily responsible for Van Buren's success. 
In spite of Van Buren's victory there were probably more 
Whigs in the state than Democrats, and Hugh Lawson White 
was certainly more popular than Martin Van Buren. In 
North Carolina, as in the nation, the people had refused to 
transfer the election of president to the House of Representa- 

*" Niles Register, LI, 228. It stated that its figures constituted the 
"official returns." See also Norton, Democratic Party, 86; Herbert D. Pegg, 
" Whig Party in North Carolina," (unpublished doctoral dissertation, Uni- 
versity of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, 1932), 154. J. G. de R. Hamilton, 
Party Politics in North Carolina, 1835-1860, volume XV of James Sprunt 
Historical Publications (Raleigh, 1916), 41. Hamilton and Pegg give 
Van Buren a majority of 9,240. Norton states that Van Buren's majority 
was 15,240. The Raleigh Register gives figures from each county and shows 
Van Buren with a majority of 3,660. The North Carolina Standard pub- 
lishes less complete returns and gives Van Buren a majority of 3,200. 

108 Raleigh Register, November 29, 1836. 




By Max L. Heyman, Jr. 

Congress, under Radical leadership, began passing its 
"Reconstruction" legislation in March, 1867. It divided the 
ex-Confederate states into five military districts, each of 
which was to be commanded by a general officer of the 
United States Army. It set up a procedure by which these 
states might be restored to the Union, stipulating that con- 
stitutional conventions were to be held in each of them. 
Colored residents were to have a part in choosing delegates 
to those bodies, but the whites who were disqualified under 
the provisions of the proposed fourteenth amendment to the 
Federal Constitution for having supported the Confederacy 
were to be excluded from voting. The constitutions framed 
by the conventions were to provide permanently for Negro 
suffrage, at the same time disqualifying the leaders of the 
late Confederacy. After the charters had been ratified by 
a majority of the qualified voters in each state, and after 
the legislatures elected under those new constitutions had 
ratified the fourteenth amendment (the fifteenth was added 
later) and it had become law, the states might then "be 
entitled to representation in Congress." The generals as- 
signed to command the southern districts were authorized 
to initiate the movement for satisfying these requirements. 1 

In the second of these military districts, Major General 
Daniel E. Sickles commanded— but not for very long. His 
interference with the operation of the United States Circuit 
Court in North Carolina, over which Chief Justice Salmon P. 
Chase presided, incurred the Attorney-General's displeasure 
and impelled the President to remove Sickles and to appoint 

1 The Acts of March 2 and 23, 1867. See Statutes at Large . . . of the 
United States, XIV, 428-429, and XV, 2. Hereafter cited as Statutes at 
Large. "The Great Reconstructed" is the title given General Canby by the 
New York Tribune. See also the Daily Richmond Whig, August 3, 1869. 


"The Great Reconstruction" 53 

Brigadier General and Brevet Major General E. R. S. Canby 
in his stead. 2 

In consequence of that action, General Canby was to be 
intimately involved in the important work of reconstruction 
in North and South Carolina for the ensuing year. The prob- 
lems and conditions that he faced in helping to effect the 
return of the Carolinas to the fold of the Union were the 
same as or similar to those which confronted the other major 
generals who commanded districts in the South. His duties 
under the congressional plan of Reconstruction were pri- 
marily "ministerial" in character, but the manner in which 
he approached and performed them drastically affected the 
states he was appointed to govern. These states were in no 
position to prevent the institution of the radical-made re- 
quirements for their readmission and, within reason, they 
were subject to Canby's every command. Although the 
authorities of North and South Carolina complained vigor- 
ously about many of his actions, the Carolinas fared better 
than did most of the states administered by the other district 

General Canby's arrival in Charleston, South Carolina, 
was greeted by a thirteen-gun salute and 3.12 inches of rain. 3 
That was followed by "close and stifling" weather and the 
welcoming calls of the mayor and aldermen and various 
other gentlemen. 4 Meanwhile, Louisa Canby, the general's 
wife, was receiving "quite a number of the first ladies of the 
city." They created a "very favorable impression." The muni- 
cipal authorities went away seemingly "satisfied" with the 
change in commanders, while the women were reported as 

a Appleton's American Annual Cyclopedia, 1867 (Washington, 1868), 
547-548. (Hereafter cited as Appleton's Annual Cyclopedia.) Also see 
J. G. de R. Hamilton, Reconstruction in North Carolina (New York, 1914), 
231-232. Hereafter cited as Hamilton, Reconstruction in North Carolina. 
See J. P. Hollis, Early Period of Reconstruction in South Carolina (Balti- 
more, 1905), 70-71. Cited hereafter as Hollis, Reconstruction in South 
Carolina. Also see "Report of the Secretary of War," House Executive 
Document No. 1, Fortieth Congress, Second Session, 23, for General Order 
No. 80, August 27, 1867, by which the President directed this action. 

3 Canby assumed command on September 5, 1867. See General Order 
No. 85, Second Military District, "General Orders-Reconstruction," House 
Executive Document No. 34-2, Fortieth Congress, Second Session, 60. 
Thirteen guns is a major general's salute. Charleston Daily News, Sep- 
tember 6, 16, 1867. The rainfall figures are for September 8. 

* Charleston Daily News, September 9, 10, 1867. 

54 The North Carolina Historical Review 

being "highly delighted" with the reception Mrs. Canby 
had accorded them. 5 Otherwise, no one ventured forth onto 
the "red hot" streets, unless, of course, it was absolutely 
necessary. 6 

The civic and society leaders of Charleston were not the 
only ones interested in the new commanding general. Nearly 
everybody in the two states comprising the Second Military 
District was curious about him, and the newspapers of North 
and South Carolina obligingly printed articles relating his 
history. 7 These were accompanied by comments, that of 
the Charleston Mercury being: 

In his opinions he is said to be a moderate Republican, who 
takes no prominent part in politics and cares but little to have 
anything to do with political affairs. 8 

It hoped that this was so. 

Nevertheless, the Charleston Courier revealed that while 
he was not a politician or a partisan he firmly believed in the 
efficacy of the Reconstruction acts and thought that it was 
the duty of all Southerners to accept the terms which had 
been offered them. The letter which the Courier quoted, 
supposedly from a personal friend of Canby, concluded on 
this note: "He will be found just to all, but corruption or 

6 Charleston Daily News, September 28, 1867. Also see the Raleigh 
Register, September 24, 1867. 

8 Charleston Daily News, September 10, 1867. 

7 In 1867 Canby was fifty years old. After graduating from West Point 
in 1839, he served in the Florida War until 1842, on the Great Lakes 
frontier, 1842-1846, in the Mexican War (where he won two brevets for 
gallant and meritorious conduct), in California during the gold rush, on 
the Minnesota frontier, 1855-1857, in the "Mormon War," and against the 
Navajo Indians in 1860-1861. In command of the Department of New 
Mexico, Canby, by then a colonel, repulsed the Confederate invasion of that 
territory in 1862. Ordered to Washington, he became military assistant to 
the Secretary of War, an office which he held until May, 1864, except for 
four months in 1863 when he was in command of the troops that quelled 
the draft riots in New York City. Appointed a major general of volunteers, 
Canby was assigned to command the Military Division of West Mississippi, 
a capacity in which he received the surrender of the last two Confederate 
armies in the field. Thereafter his attention was directed to the problems of 
reconstruction, first in Louisiana (under the presidential plan for re- 
storing the southern states to the Union) and subsequently, after this 
Carolina interlude, in Texas and Virginia (under the congressional plan). 
Following his service in the South, Canby was assigned to command the 
Department of Columbia, where on April 11, 1873, he was assassinated by 
the Modoc Indians during a peace conference. For a study of his life see 
Max L. Heyman, Jr., "Prudent Soldier: A Biography of Major General 
E. R. S. Canby, 1817-1873" (doctoral dissertation, University of California, 
Los Angeles, 1952). 

8 Charleston Mercury, August 30, 1867. 

"The Great Reconstruction" 55 

disaffection in any guise will find him utterly inapproach- 
able." 9 

With that, the "Old Soldier," who had served with Canby 
at Fort Bridger in the Utah Territory and had submitted the 
sketch of the general which the Daily Sentinel published, 

Let all politicians, red, white, or green, stay away from him, 
and he will do justice to all. Certainly I know this; he is firm, 
he knows no party, and he obeys the instructions and orders of 
his superiors. 10 

This veteran, for one, was convinced that North and South 
Carolina were fortunate to have Canby for a military gov- 

The Charleston Daily News was skeptical, "tilt may be 
that Canby . . . will prove less objectionable to the people of 
the Carolinas than General Sickles. We say all this may be. 
There can be no certainty on this point." 11 Simultaneously, 
the Charleston Courier was expressing the hope of the Caro- 
linas when it declared: 

He has no other option than to enforce the Reconstruction Acts. 
It is believed, however, that he will administer these in a spirit 
of justice and liberality, without prejudice or passion, and with 
a desire only for the general welfare and for a harmonious 
restoration. 12 

There can be no doubt, after a careful examination of the 
record, that the acts were administered with strict justice, 
without the intense prejudice or passion which is usually 
associated with the period, and for what Canby conceived to 
be the general welfare. Whether one thinks that the justice 
meted out was impartially determined, or that Canby was 
influenced more by the "radicals" than by the "conserva- 
tives," depends mainly upon which side of the fence the 
reader happens to be. 

The New York Tribune once remarked that "no one has 
ever called Canby a Radical"; 13 but, after experiencing the 

9 Charleston Courier, September 3, 1867; Chronicle (Washington, D. C), 
August 30, 1867. 

10 Daily Sentinel (Raleigh), September 11, 1867. 

u Charleston Daily News, August 30, 1867. 

12 Charleston Courier, August 30, 1867. 

18 Quoted in the Charleston Mercury, August 30, 1867. 

56 The North Carolina Historical Review 

general's actions for a while, Governor Jonathan Worth of 
North Carolina did. That "quiet little old gentleman" of sixty- 
five, who was as "sharp as a briar," 14 was led to declare that 
"in giving us Canby for Sickles the Prest. swapped a devil for 
a witch." 15 He regarded Canby as an "honest man," but "an 
unostentatious and candid Radical" who cooperated "cordial- 
ly" with the less vindictive portion of Congress. 16 

On another occasion, he labeled Canby "an extreme Radi- 
cal," who was incapable of "magnanimous and statesman- 
like" views. 17 He considered him "a fool," "more tyrannical" 
and possessed of "less intelligence and consideration" for the 
people of the "Tar Heel" State than his predecessor. 18 Indeed, 
after an interview with the general, Worth advised the gov- 
ernor of Georgia that "Our military comt. is, com amove, a 
Radical." Canby assured him, Worth declared, that "the 
laws he is appointed to execute, are not only constitutional, 
but wise." The general, moreover, believed that these meas- 
ures invested him "with unlimited despotic power" over 
the laws and constitutions of North and South Carolina. 
Furthermore, Worth asserted, Canby maintained these 
views "as a narrow minded conscientious Radical." 19 No 
other person was so outspoken in his criticism of General 
Canby as was Jonathan Worth. 

Worth's judgment of Canby was, however, very probably 
influenced by the fact that, from his standpoint, the new 
district commander was less cooperative than General 
Sickles had been. Whereas Sickles had favorably entertained 
his suggestions, Canby, the governor felt, all too frequently 
ignored him, and even when his views were solicited by the 

14 Charleston Daily News, October 18, 1867, quoting the Chronicle 

15 Jonathan Worth to B. G. Worth, December 26, 1867, J. G. deR. Hamil- 
ton (ed.), The Correspondence of Jonathan Worth (Raleigh, 1909), II, 
1095. Hereafter cited as Hamilton, Worth Correspondence. 

"Jonathan Worth to B. G. Worth, October 25, 1867, Hamilton, Worth 

"Jonathan Worth to John W. Wheeler, October 31, 1867, Hamilton, 
Worth Correspondence, II, 1071. 

18 Jonathan Worth to R. P. Dick, December 13, 1867, and Jonathan Worth 
to W. A. Graham, January 10, 1868, Hamilton, Worth Correspondence, 
II, 1085 and 1131. 

"Jonathan Worth to Governor Charles J. Jenkins, January 3, 1868, 
Hamilton, Worth Correspondence, II, 1105-1106. 

"The Great Reconstruction" 57 

general they seldom seemed to carry much weight. 20 Besides, 
from Worth's staunch conservative point of view, Canby's 
actions appeared radical. It must be remembered that no 
matter what Canby did in pursuance of orders, the subjected 
whites under his control (except the radical elements, of 
course) deemed his actions illegal and unnecessary. 

Canby's part in the process known as Congressional Re- 
construction was governed by the act of March 2, 1867, and 
the acts of March 23, and July 19, 1867, supplementary 

By the first of these measures, he was enjoined 

... to protect all persons in their rights of person and property, 
to suppress insurrection, disorder, and violence, and to punish, or 
cause to be punished, all disturbers of the public peace and 
criminals. . . . 

He was authorized to allow the local courts "to take jurisdic- 
tion of and to try offenders," but when, in his judgment, it 
became necessary, he was empowered "to organize military 
commissions or tribunals for that purpose. ..." Thereupon, 
"all interference under color of State authority with the 
exercise of military authority" was to be "null and void." 21 

In endeavoring to provide the greatest possible protection 
for the people of the Carolinas, Canby stationed his force of 
nearly 3,000 officers and men at points difficult of access, 
where disturbances were most likely to occur, and from 
which he might easily meet any unusual situation. In South 
Carolina, for example, he concentrated eight companies in 
the seaboard region, six in the central section, two in the 
comparatively small Savannah River District, and two in the 
western or mountain country of the state. This arrangement 
was made on the basis of the ratio of whites to colored people 

30 Hamilton, Reconstruction in North Carolina, 240 ; see Worth to Canby, 
January 23, 1868, Jonathan Worth Letter Books (North Carolina State 
Department of Archives and History, Raleigh). Worth compares the ac- 
tions of the two district commanders in his letter to John H. Wheeler, 
October 31, 1867, Hamilton, Worth Correspondence, II, 1069-1072. 

91 Statutes at Large, XIV, 428. 

58 The North Carolina Historical Review 

in each of those areas, their attitude toward one another, 
and the existing means of communication. 22 

James L. Orr, governor of the "Palmetto" State, expostu- 
lated against this disposition of the troops. Since the state 
was not permitted to organize its militia, the army was the 
sole reliance in case of trouble and Orr felt that the presence 
of the troops was indispensable to the "certain preservation 
of peace and order." He contended that a unit ought to be 
posted at every one of the county seats. 23 

If that proposal were carried out, Canby explained to the 
governor, it would reduce the military to a simple constabu- 
lary force and render it "utterly useless" in event of any 
serious difficulty between the two races. 24 "I believe that 
every district in this State wishes to have troops," Canby 
told General Grant. The people wanted a small guard in each 
village because it gave them a greater feeling of security 
and because it dispersed the army payroll among a larger 
segment of the population. More than that, it relieved the 
inhabitants of their ordinary police duties. 25 Yet, when a 
community had troops stationed in it, its residents com- 
plained constantly about the soldiers' conduct. 26 

This desire to have the troops everywhere was, of course, 
merely a manifestation of the uneasiness in some, if not 
most, sections of the state. Canby was "sorry to see" it, for 
the excitement tended "naturally and inevitably" to give a 
"coloring or suspicion of wrong" to perfectly legal and harm- 
less acts on the part of the Negro. The general was satisfied 

22 Canby to the Chief of Staff, Headquarters of the Army, December 23, 
1867, Second Military District, Letters Sent, No. 1891, 1867. Canby had 
thiry-seven companies at his disposal. See Return, February, 1868, Second 
Military District, Letter Sent, No. 1012, 1868. All the material on the dis- 
trict, unless otherwise indicated, may be found in the War Records Divi- 
sion, National Archives. 

23 Governor James L. Orr to Canby, November 29 and December 18, 1867, 
Governor Orr's Letter Books, III, 237-239, 329. Governor Orr's Letter Books 
are located at the Historical Commission of South Carolina, Columbia. 
Hereafter referred to as Orr Letter Books. 

24 Canby to Orr, December 24, 1867, Letters of Edward R. S. Canby, 
Historical Commission of South Carolina. Hereafter cited as Canby Letters. 

25 Canby to Grant, December 18, 1867 and Canby to Chief of Staff, De- 
cember 23, 1867, Second Military District, Letters Sent, Nos. 1826 and 
1891, 1867. 

28 See Lt. Louis V. Caziarc, Assistant Adjutant General, to Messrs. T. B. 
Whaley, I. G. W. Strowmann, and others, Orangeburg, S. C, September 17, 
1867, Second Military District, Letters Sent, No. 696, 1867. 

"The Great Reconstruction" 59 

that the freedmen did not want to make trouble. As a matter 
of fact, he was persuaded that they were "quite as appre- 
hensive as the whites. ..." But this mutual fear and distrust 
could lead to disorders. 27 The cry of "negro insurrection" 
had been used so much for political effect that any incident 
was greatly magnified out of all proportion to its actual 
significance. 28 

To forestall any outbreaks of this nature, newspaper re- 
ports and complaints registered by individuals were prompt- 
ly followed up. On October 31, for instance, Governor On- 
informed Canby that he had "reliable" information that some 
300 freedmen of the Abbeville District in the western part of 
the state were meeting regularly every other week to drill 
and "as they say preparing to fight for land." The governor 
requested the general to take steps to prohibit the Negroes 
from assembling and to punish the ringleaders as their 
crimes deserved. 29 

"Complaints of this kind are not at all new," Canby re- 
plied. They were frequently made and, upon investigation, it 
was usually found that the meetings were not unlawful in 
character or for any illegal purpose. In this case, the special 
agent whom he had dispatched to the scene reported that 
the Negroes had been in the habit of assembling there and 
elsewhere for some time past. Nevertheless, those guilty of 
violating any police regulations had been arrested and 
brought to trial before a military commission. 

Some of the freedmen were found to be carrying arms, 
allegedly to protect themselves against attack by the whites. 
The fact that threats had been made against them was be- 
yond doubt. Whether serious or not, the Negroes believed 
that they were made in earnest and had prepared to resist 
any attempt to break up their meetings. Aside from that, 
Canby assured the governor, there was no evidence that 
anything was brewing. If a collision did occur, Canby in- 
sisted, it would be "without intention on the part of the 

27 Canby to Chief of Staff, November 30, 1867, Second Military District, 
Letters Sent, No. 1560, 1867. 

28 Canby to Chief of Staff, December 12, 1867, Second Military District, 
Letters Sent, No. 1867, 1867. 

29 Orr to Canby, October 31, 1867, Orr Letter Books, III, 188. 

60 The North Carolina Historical Review 

negroes and from provocation on the part of ignorant or 
unprincipled whites." 

He pointed out that the possession of firearms by the 
Negroes was still a novelty, and that the fears excited were 
not unnatural. But it seemed unreasonable to him to assume 
that they were to be used for hostile purposes and that 
"every assemblage of negroes is to drill preparatory to 
fighting for land." Dressing in old army clothes was not 
peculiar to South Carolina or to the freedmen and, the gen- 
eral chided Governor Orr: 

I have known the same complaint of waste of time in attending 
political meetings to be made of white men, when the question 
involved did not touch their interests so nearly as those now 
involved do touch the present and future interests of the negroes. 

Of course, Canby mollified him in conclusion, he intended 
to watch the situation closely, and was ready to control and 
check immediately any "wrong tendency" that might arise. 30 

On another occasion, Governor Orr sent Canby an article 
from the Winnsboro News, telling of an "incendiary" speech 
delivered by a colored magistrate in Fairfield County. Again, 
Orr requested Canby to "depute a decent officer" to inquire 
into the matter and to remove and punish this military ap- 
pointee if the report proved correct. 31 

The investigation disclosed that the News' version of the 
speech was, as Canby had suspected, 32 "a great perversion" 
of what had been said. 33 The governor thereupon became 
very indignant, maintaining that Canby had prejudged the 
affair, and he, therefore, childishly refused to forward the 
evidence which he had in his possession. 34 

That brings up an important point. Much of the evidence 
available in this period conflicts. The facts were subject to 
more than one interpretation and there was doubtless some 
falsification of them. There is no reason to believe, however, 

30 Canby to Orr, November 25, 1867, Second Military District, Letters 
Sent, No. 1499, 1867. 
81 Orr to Canby, November 27, 1867, Orr Letter Books, III, 230-232. 

32 Orr to Canby, December 18, 1867, Orr Letter Books, III, 331. 

33 Second Military District, Letters Received, J59, 1867, is the report. See 
also Canby to Orr, December 24, 1867, Canby Letters. 

34 Orr to Canby, December 18, 1867, Orr Letter Books, III, 331-332. 

"The Great Reconstruction" 61 

that either the governor or General Canby ever engaged in 
this misdeed intentionally. They merely took the word of 
their informants or subordinates to whom they entrusted 
the investigation of these reports. They could not be every- 
where themselves. Canby could not avoid making some mis- 
takes, but, where the evidence does not agree, his informa- 
tion has been given precedence, for that was the basis upon 
which he acted. 

In maintaining order throughout the district, Canby pre- 
ferred to leave the enforcement of the laws to the local 
authorities. These officers had been placed, by General 
Sickles, under the supervisory control of the provost marshal 
general of the command 35 and "in direct relation and corre- 
spondence" with the several post commanders. General Can- 
by continued this policy, but, while defining more clearly 
and fully that relationship, he counseled non-interference 
with their activities. Only where those officials refused or 
failed to act, or "when it became mainfest that from past 
political action or by reason of prejudice against color or 
caste, impartial justice would not be administered," did he 
authorize intervention in the usual mode of procedure. 36 

Canby was especially disturbed by the prejudice shown 
by various civil functionaries. He discovered that some of 
the local magistrates were unwilling to investigate "well 
founded" complaints made by freedmen against white men. 
They were governed by "traditions of the past . . . instead 
of the law as it exists." The most effective solution for this, 
in his opinion, was "the exercise by the community of such 
moral coercion as will constrain the local authorities to deal 
as impartially and justly with the negro as with the whites" 37 
—but that was wishful thinking. 

Over 8,000 arrests were made in the Second Military Dis- 
trict between March 2, 1867, and July 24, 1868, and about 

85 Canby to Assistant Adjutant General, Headquarters, October 24, 1867, 
in "Report of the Secretary of War," House Executive Document No. 1, 
Fortieth Congress, Second Session, 300. Hereafter cited as Canby Report, 

38 Canby to Chief of Staff, Headquarters, August 31, 1868, in "Report of 
the Secretary of War," House Executive Document No. I, Fortieth Con- 
gress, Third Session, 338. Hereafter cited as Canby Report, 1868. 

37 Canby to Orr, November 25 and 30, 1867, Second Military District, 
Letters Sent, Nos. 1499 and 1560, 1867. 

62 The North Carolina Historical Review 

one-eighth of them were made by the army. 38 These arrests 
inevitably became the object of protest by the newspapers 
and the governors of both states, often after the civil authori- 
ties had requested the army to take action in the matter. 
Governor Worth was particularly vexatious in this regard. 
He considered the power of military arrest "iniquitious" and 
"most oppressively exercised" in the "Old North" State. He 
even remonstrated with the President so vehemently about 
these acts of "military despotism" that he thought it would 
result in his removal, or Canby's. 39 

Neither was removed, but Canby found it necessary to 
defend himself against Worth's charges. In refuting the ac- 
cusations that had been made, Canby asserted that he had 
more than once in years past secured the arrest of criminals 
and held them in his guard house until the proper authorities 
were prepared to take charge of them. He saw no grounds 
for the governor's objection on that score. In other respects, 
he conceded: 

It is always to be regretted that innocent persons should be 
arrested or subjected to any restraints or inconvenience from 
false accusation or unfounded suspicion, but this is an incident 
of civil as well as military arrests. 

"Charges of military despotism are easily made," Canby 
observed, but military arrests were not made without pre- 
vious investigation or on "strong evidence of guilt." 

As a general rule [Canby concluded] these complaints are 
disin [g] enuous in the use that is made of them by being pub- 
lished for political effect with the knowledge that the officer ac- 
cused is restrained by rules of military propriety from making 
any public defense or counter statement. 40 

38 Canby Report, 1868, 351-353. Arrests made by the military at the re- 
quest of the civil authorities were not counted as military arrests and are 
therefore not included in this number. Persons arrested as witnesses, how- 
ever, are included in this number. 

39 See the Daily Sentinel, October 25, 1867 ; the Charleston Mercury, 
March 4, and November 30, 1867, and January 23, 1868; Worth Letter 
Book, 1865-1867, I, 578-579, 688-692, and Worth Letter Book, 1867-1868, II, 
50-51. Also see Hamilton, Worth Correspondence, II, 1069-1070, 1085, 1090- 
1091, 1095, 1098-1099, and 1101-1103. 

40 Canby to Chief of Staff, November 14, 1867, Andrew Johnson Papers, 
CXXIV, f. 17833-17854, Library of Congress. 

"The Great Reconstruction" 63 

As far as trials by military courts were concerned, only 
550 cases were tried before those tribunals in the sixteen 
months of their existence in the Second Military District. 
Judge advocates do not and did not take cases into court 
unless they are or were almost positive of obtaining a con- 
viction. They won 445, or eighty per cent, of the cases tried. 
And that was a poor showing, undoubtedly due to the fact 
that they were dealing with civilians for the most part and 
were obliged to argue some cases which should never have 
been brought to trial. Besides that, 129 of the sentences 
passed by these courts were either partially or wholly re- 
mitted by the commanding general. 41 

Congress had authorized the use of military courts in the 
South, while leaving their civil counterparts open. It was 
not General Canby's fault that this defied the opinion of 
the Supreme Court in the case of Ex parte Milligan. The only 
question that can seriously be raised against him is: Did he 
resort to military courts too much, or was it expedient for 
him to have used them as often as he did? 

Many persons asked Canby for military trials, but it is 
estimated that about ninety-five times out of a hundred he 
informed them that adequate remedy could be secured in 
the civil courts. So, too, many individuals emerging the 
losers in cases tried by the civil tribunals appealed to him 
for retrials under military auspices, or at least military 
intercession in the decisions of the civil courts. The records 
show that these pleas were refused nearly all the time. 42 

According to General Canby's report on the subject, inter- 
ference with the local courts was permitted only "in the ex- 
ceptional cases growing out of the rebellion." How many 
times he annulled, stayed, or dismissed cases is not known, 
but he took action in three general types of cases. 

41 Canby Report, 1868, 


The period actually covered is January 1, 1867, 

to June 30, 1868. 

Whites Colored 


368 182 


303 142 

Not Guilty 

65 40 

Remissions : 


63 20 


17 29 


82 per cent 78 per cent 

Second Military District, Letters Sent, 1867-1868, passim. 

64 The North Carolina Historical Review 

The first class were prosecutions for acts committed dur- 
ing the war under military orders. Cases of this sort were 
quite numerous in North Carolina, where the population had 
been divided in its allegiance, and when it was established, 
"by satisfactory evidence," that the animosity engendered 
by civil strife was the reason for the action, Canby stopped 
the proceedings. 

In the second class of cases, where the local courts at- 
tempted to validate or give effect to unexecuted judgments 
of the late Confederate judiciary, Canby ordered dismissals; 
while in the third class, he stayed those cases involving a 
denial by the local tribunals of the right of appeal or removal 
to the Federal courts as guaranteed by the laws of the United 
States. 43 

Canby continued to enforce all the orders and regulations 
that had been promulgated by his predecessor, but, from 
time to time, he revoked or modified some of them. Of the 
many changes that were made, the one which perhaps 
caused the most indignation was the order directing the ad- 
mission of freedmen to jury duty. 44 

In North Carolina, the qualification for a juror was deter- 
mined by the possession of a freehold estate; in South Caro- 
lina, it was, for all practical purposes, determined by a per- 
son's color. Canby therefore decided to change the existing 
systems in order to "secure representation in the jury box 
to classes heretofore excluded, and constituting in the two 
States ... a majority of the population." It was 
not only a question of abstract justice; but one that the interests 
of the community required should be so settled as not only to 
secure the legal rights of all classes, but also to give that sense 
of security which is the best guarantee of order and subordina- 
tion to law, and the remedies it affords for the redress of all 

Canby encountered many practical difficulties in securing 
this legal right "to all the inhabitants," without at the same 
time introducing the "dangerous elements of vice and ig- 

43 Canby Report, 1868, 339-340. 

44 General Order, No. 89, September 13, 1867, "General Orders — Recon- 
struction," 61. General Sickles had already made provisions for Negro 
juries, General Order, No. 32, May 30, 1867, "General Orders — Reconstruc- 
tion," 46. Also see Hollis, Reconstruction in South Carolina, 72; and Hamil- 
ton, Reconstruction in North Carolina, 234. 

"The Great Reconstruction" 65 

norance." He did not for that very reason, extend the jury 
lists as far as General Grant would have liked. 45 As he finally 
established it, all citizens who were assessed for taxes and 
who were qualified to vote were embraced in the jury lists, 
but the courts were permitted to purge all individuals who 
were mentally or morally unfit. 46 Color alone, however, was 
not deemed sufficient reason for disqualification. 47 

For thus modifying the law, Canby was vilified by the 
press (especially in South Carolina), Governors Orr and 
Worth objected (it was the former who wrote the President 
on this occasion), a superior court justice in North Carolina 
resigned in protest, and Canby was forced to suspend and 
then remove from office a judge in South Carolina who re- 
fused to execute the order. 48 

This power to suspend or remove from office any appoint- 
ed or elected official, state, municipal, or otherwise, and the 
authority to appoint some other person or detail a "competent 
officer or soldier of the army" to fill the vacancies created by 
such suspensions or removals or by death or resignation, was 
conferred upon Canby by the Reconstruction Act of July 19, 
1867. 49 

Canby made a number of removals, but the exact figure 
escapes disclosure. In North Carolina, according to J. G. deR. 
Hamilton, it was only a small number— three sheriffs and 
seventeen magistrates. 50 In South Carolina, besides the judge 
who has been referred to above, the mayor of Charleston, his 
military successor, thirteen members of the board of alder- 

45 Canby to Chief of Staff, September 14, 1867, Second Military District, 
Letters Sent, No. 676, 1867. 

46 Canby Report, 1868, 337-338. 

47 Canby to Adjutant General, October 15, 1867, Second Military District, 
Letters Sent, No. 953, 1867. Also see Worth to P. T. Massey, October 17, 
1867, Hamilton, Worth Correspondence, II, 1054. 

48 Charleston Courier, October 3, 14, 15, 16, 1867, 2; Charleston Mercury, 
October 3, 4, 14, 15, 1867. The October 15 issue carries Governor Orr's 
letter to the President; Worth to Canby, September 10, 11, 30, and Oc- 
tober 18, 1867, Worth Letter Book, I, 576-578, 578-579, 590, and 627-628; 
Canby Report, 1867, 304-307; and Canby Report, 1868, 338. Also see Canby 
to Chief of Staff, October 19, 1867, Second Military District, Letters Sent, 
No. 1012, 1867. 

49 Statutes at Large, XV, 14. 

60 Hamilton, Reconstruction in North Carolina, 238. In Canby Report, 
1867, 312, there is a table showing the appointments and removals made to 
September 30, 1867, but it does not give any clue as to how many were 
removed or appointed by Canby. In twenty-five days, it could not have been 
very many. 

66 The North Carolina Historical Review 

men, the mayor of Columbia, and eight of that city's alder- 
men were removed at the general's behest; and there were 
others. 51 

Nearly every one of these removals seemed arbitrary and 
uncalled for to the people, inasmuch as the reasons for them 
were not usually revealed. But Canby did not make removals 
unless the officers in question were "disloyal" or obstructed 
the "due and proper administration" of the Reconstruction 
Acts. 52 If the word of the press is to be accepted he always 
acted without cause, due to the pressure brought to bear by 
the "Republican colored committee," "with no other motive 
than to punish and humiliate a proud, brave, manly, wrong 
hating people," or just to satisfy a whim. 53 The Columbia 
Phoenix made the typical comment when it remarked: 

Gen. Canby . . . has made some changes in our municipal gov- 
ernment, not because of any grounds of complaint against the 
duly elected representatives of the people of Columbia, but 
simply because, as we presume, it seems good to him thus to act 
in the plentitude of his powers. The sword of the oppressor 
thus opens the way for the new regime to be tried in South 
Carolina. 54 

Canby 's appointments were also received with disfavor, 
particularly when he appointed Negroes or "carpetbaggers" 
to office. 55 As a general rule, however, Canby allowed the 
governors of North and South Carolina to nominate indi- 
viduals for office. The responsibility for making the appoint- 
ments rested with him alone, and he did not always accept 
their recommendations. 86 

Canby sincerely desired to fill the public offices with "men 
of unblemished character," and he, therefore, had the back- 

61 John S. Reynolds, Reconstruction in South Carolina (Columbia, 1905), 
70-71. Hereafter cited as Reynolds, Reconstruction in South Carolina. 
Canby to Chief of Staff, February 21, 1868, Second Military District, Let- 
ters Sent, No. 795, 1868. Charleston Courier, May 27 and July 7, 1868. 
See also Special Order No. 191, section I, October 28, 1867, "General Orders- 
Reconstruction," 94. 

52 Canby to W. W. Holden, September 24, 1867, Second Military District, 
Letters Sent, No. 763, 1867. 

53 Charleston Courier, May 27, 1868, and Charleston Daily News, May 29, 

64 Quoted in Charleston Courier, June 22, 1868. 

66 Canby appointed seven Negroes to serve as aldermen in Charleston. 
Charleston Courier, May 29, 1868; Charleston Daily News, May 29, 1868. 
Also see Hamilton, Reconstruction in North Carolina, 328. 

66 Canby to Worth, January 19, 1868, Second Military District, Letters 
Sent, No. 263, 1868. 

"The Great Reconstruction" 67 

ground of every recommended person investigated. 57 Of 
course, just what qualities one needed in order to have an 
'unblemished character" was subject to a difference of 
opinion. Governor Worth, for example, professed his inability 
to find a man of "respectable pretensions to fitness" whom 
he could nominate to succeed the judge who had resigned 
over Canby's jury order. 58 The general, on the other hand, 
questioned Worth's "standard of qualification." If devotion 
to "our holy and lost cause" was the basis on which Worth 
assessed the worthiness of a man for office, then Canby did 
not want his nominations. 59 

In several instances, Canby continued in office those 
officials whose terms had expired, which was, in a way, ap- 
pointing them to their posts. 60 He did this because the pres- 
ent governments were provisional only until the states were 
admitted to representation in Congress. 61 When that happen- 
ed, his appointments would lapse, and he did not wish to 
embarrass the new administrations by having them find, 
upon their inauguration, that they could do nothing about 
the officials who were in office as a result of being elected 
for normal terms by his orders. 62 

In dealing with the subjects that have been discussed thus 
far, Canby was abetted by a Bureau of Civil Affairs, which 
acted as a clearing house for the business of the district. 
Generally, anything relating to the operation of the Recon- 
struction acts and to the legal relations of the political com- 
munities, civil officers, and individuals in the Carolinas came 
within its purview. In handling these matters, the bureau 
framed orders and regulations, which, upon Canby's ap- 
proval, were promulgated in the district; and it also prepared 

57 Canby to 'Worth, January 4, 1868, Second Military District, Letters 
Sent, No. 42, 1868. 

68 Worth to Canby, January 11, 1868, Worth Letter Book, II, 55. 

69 Canby to Worth, January 19, 1868, Second Military District, Letters 
Sent, No. 263, 1868. 

60 For instance, he ordered the town council of Spartanburg, South Caro- 
lina, to continue in office. See Charleston Mercury, October 2, 1867. 

61 Statutes at Large, XIV, 429, Act of March 2, 1867. 

62 Canby to Hon. A. G. Mackey, President of Constitutional Convention, 
Charleston, May 26, 1868, Second Military District, Letters Sent, No. 1922, 
1868. Also see Caziarc to J. W. Schenck, Jr., Chairman, Republican County 
Committee, Wilmington, N. C, December 6, 1867. Second Military District, 
Letters Sent, No. 1636, 1867; and Canby Report, 1868, 341. 

68 The North Carolina Historical Review 

briefs and opinions for his scrutiny, thereby enabling him 
to act more promptly and presumably more intelligently on 
questions presented to him for decision. 63 

The registration of voters, as prescribed by the act of 
March 23, 1867, was managed through the bureau and had 
been in progress for over a month when Canby arrived in 
Charleston. It was concluded twenty-five days after he as- 
sumed command of the district. 64 This registration was in the 
hands of officials appointed by General Sickles; consequently, 
other than a few specific decisions on who could register and 
the appointment of a couple of registrars to fill vacancies that 
occurred, Canby 's major contribution to this phase of the 
reconstruction process was the issuance of a rather "liberal" 
index upon which the revision of the registration lists was 
based. 65 

When registration was completed, Canby ordered an elec- 
tion, at which the qualified voters in each state were to cast 
ballots for or against a constitutional convention. 66 They 
were, at the same time, to select delegates to constitute the 
convention in case a majority of the voters were in favor of it 
(and provided a majority of those registered exercised their 
franchise ) . 67 

The election was held on November 19 and 20 and, after 
a preliminary scare that the call for a convention had failed 
in South Carolina, the voters of both states were found to 
have expressed their preference in favor of holding con- 
ventions. 68 Accordingly, in conformity with the fourth section 
of the March 23 Reconstruction Act, Canby directed that 

68 Canby Report, 1867, 310-311. A. J. Willard, who later became chief 
justice of the State Supreme Court of South Carolina, who was in charge 
of this bureau. See Francis B. Simkins and Robert H. Woody, South Caro- 
lina during Reconstruction (Chapel Hill, 1932), 143. 

64 Canby Report, 1867, 312. See General Order No. 65, August 1, 1867, 
"General Orders-Reconstruction," 50-53. 

65 William A. Russ, Jr., "Disfranchisement in North Carolina, 1867-1868," 
North Carolina Historical Review, XI (October, 1934), 278. See Circular of 
October 31, 1867, "General Orders-Reconstruction," 69-72. Also see Daily 
Sentinel, November 8, 1867. 

66 General Orders Nos. 99 and 101, October 16 and 18, 1867, "General 
Orders-Reconstruction," 63-64, 65-66. The former is for South Carolina. 

67 Statutes at Large, XV, 3, Act of March 23, 1867. 

68 Canby to Grant, November 29, 1867, Second Military District, Letters 
Sent, No. 1543, 1867. For the vote, see Canby to the Adjutant General, 
February 19, 1868, "Registered Voters in Rebel States," Senate Executive 
Document No, 53, Fortieth Congress, Second Session, 3-7. 

"The Great Reconstruction" 69 

the delegates chosen at the late election be convened on 
January 14, 1868, for the purpose of framing constitutions 
and civil governments for their respective states. 69 

General Canby did not have very much to do with these 
conventions. In South Carolina, he refused to act upon sev- 
eral resolutions presented to him by that body, although he 
did issue an order, as requested, temporarily staying, for a 
period of three months, all executions and sales of property 
for debt. 70 He sanctioned a similar law, though one of longer 
duration, for North Carolina. 71 In both states, on the adoption 
of ordinances for the assessment of taxes to cover the cost of 
the conventions, Canby directed the treasurers of the respec- 
tive states to advance money to defray the current expenses 
of those assemblies. 72 He did this because he believed that 
the members of the conventions and their creditors should 
not be compelled to wait for the collection of the taxes when 
sufficient funds were already in the state treasuries. 73 Other 
than staying until the end of the convention session the court 
proceedings in an assault and battery case against the assist- 
ant doorkeeper of the North Carolina assemblage, 74 Canby 
does not seem to have taken any further part in the affairs 
of either body. 

When the conventions adjourned sine die, their handiwork 
and candidates for office in each state had to be submitted to 

69 General Orders, Nos. 160 and 165, December 28 and 31, 1867, "Gen- 
eral-Orders Reconstruction," 81-92, 84-85. The latter is for North Carolina. 

70 General Order No. 14, January 31, 1868, "General Orders-Reconstruc- 
tion," 97-98. Also see A. G. Mackey to Canby, January 25, 1868, Second 
Military District, Register of Letters Received, II (LXVIII), 591; Reynolds, 
Reconstruction in South Carolina, 80; and Appleton's Annual Cyclopedia, 
1868, 693. 

71 General Order No. 57, April 2, 1868, Second Military District, General 
Orders, 1868. Also see Hamilton, Reconstruction in North Carolina, 
262-263; and Appleton's Annual Cyclopedia, 1868, 555. 

72 Hollis, Reconstruction in South Carolina, 88. General Order No. 17, 
February 6, 1868, "General Orders-Reconstruction," 98-99, for South Car- 
olina. Hamilton, Reconstruction in North Carolina, 260-261. General Order 
No. 20, February 12, 1868, Second Military District, General Orders, 1868, 
for North Carolina. 

73 Kemp P. Battle, Memoirs of an Old-Time Tar Heel (Chapel Hill, 1945), 
213-214. Edited by William J. Battle. Kemp P. Battle was treasurer of 
North Carolina. 

7 * Canby to C J. Cowles, President of Constitutional Convention, Raleigh, 
March 14, 1868, Second Military District, Letters Sent, No. 1052, 1868. 
On January 17, 1868, he attended a session of the South Carolina Con- 
vention to hear Governor Orr address that body. See Charleston Courier, 
January 18, 1868. On February 12, 1868, he sat in on the North Carolina 
Convention. See North Carolina Standard, February 13, 1868. 

70 The North Carolina Historical Review 

the voters. So, while the nation buzzed about the impeach- 
ment move against President Johnson, Canby proceeded to 
authorize a second election for the Carolinas. 75 

On learning that there might be attempts by "combina- 
tions" to prevent, delay, or hinder persons from voting by 
force, intimidation, or threats of violence, the general pro- 
mulgated another order warning that any interference with 
the election would be punished as provided by law. 76 One 
thing that bothered him was how to prevent persons from 
discharging their employees or tenants for not voting as they 
were told. He sought to forestall this by letting it be known 
"that the duty of the military authority to secure a fair and 
free election will be fully performed"; that if laborers and 
tenants were displaced and became public charges, the 
county poor wardens would be required to take care of them 
and an additional tax would be levied for that purpose. 
Moreover, advances by the Freedmen's Bureau would be 
withheld from planters who engaged in this practice. 77 How 
Canby proposed to ascertain positively who dismissed his 
employees because of the way they voted is difficult to per- 

Hamilton has asserted that General Canby had the names 
of the candidates for office in each state placed on the same 
ballot with the question of ratification of the constitution, 
thus, by a "piece of entirely unjustifiable partisan politics," 
preventing all who had been disfranchised under the Recon- 
struction Acts from exercising their franchise as provided by 
the newly framed charters. 78 This statement is somewhat mis- 
leading. By the fourth section of the Second Reconstruction 
Act, the proposed constitutions had to be ratified by "the 
persons registered under the provisions of this [the March 
23] act. . . ." 79 Canby merely conformed to the letter of the 

75 General Orders Nos. 40 and 45, March 13 and 23, 1868, "Elections in 
Southern States," House Executive Document No. 291, Fortieth Congress, 
First Session, 9-11, 4-8. The former was for South Carolina. 

76 General Order No. 61, April 6, 1868, Second Military District, General 
Orders, 1868. 

77 General Order No. 80, May 2, 1868, Second Military District, General 
Orders, 1868; see also Caziarc to Colonel W. B. Royal, April 10, 1868, 
Second Military District, Letters Sent, No. 1337, 1868. 

78 Hamilton, Reconstruction in North Carolina, 285-286. 

79 Statutes at Large, XV, 3. 

"The Great Reconstruction" 71 

law, which he interpreted to mean that the constitutions just 
drafted remained inoperative until they were accepted by 
Congress. 80 

It is true that if Canby had permitted the vote on the 
question of ratification to be taken first, waited for Con- 
gress to approve the new documents, and then allowed a 
second election for state and country officers, most of those 
who had been disfranchised by Congress would have had a 
chance to vote on the candidates for office. But this would 
have been an involved, costly, and time-consuming process 
to say the least. 

Canby did, however, have the registration lists revised be- 
fore the poll on ratification was taken and whereas, in North 
Carolina, the total registration prior to the election on the 
convention question had been 178,665, it was now raised to 
196,873— an increase of over 18,000. In South Carolina, the 
earlier registration figure was upped 5,139 to 133, 195. 81 

Canby did everything possible to get out the vote, 82 even 
suspending the sessions of the state courts so that all might 
have an opportunity to exercise their franchise. 83 The elec- 
tion was held April 14 to 16 in South Carolina and April 21 to 
23 in North Carolina, and the people of the two states ac- 
cepted the proposed constitutions. 84 

On June 25, 1868, Congress approved these charters. 85 The 
states had only to install their new officers, ratify the pro- 
posed fourteenth amendment to the Federal Constitution, 
and the ordeal by Congressional Reconstruction would be 
over. 86 At this juncture, in order to "facilitate" the organiza- 
tion of the new administrations, Canby removed the pro- 
visional officers of both states and appointed the recently 
elected officials in their stead. 87 This was done by General 

80 See Canby to Orr, May 1, 1868, Second Military District, Letters Sent, 
No. 1600, 1868. 

81 Canby Report, 1868, 340-341. 

82 See the provisions of General Orders Nos. 40 and 45, March 13 or 
23, 1868, "Elections in Southern States," 5, 9-10. 

83 General Order No. 65, April 10, 1868, Second Military District, 
General Orders, 1868. 

84 Canby Report, 1868, 340-341. 

85 The constitutions of Alabama, Florida, Georgia, and Louisiana were 
also accepted in the "Omnibus Bill." See Statutes at Large, XV, 73-74. 

89 Statutes at Large, XIV, 429, Act of March 2, 1867. 
87 General Order No. 120, June 30, 1868, Second Military District 
General Orders, 1868. 

72 The North Carolina Historical Review 

Grant's direction and was in accord with the desire of the 
Radicals to be certain that the reconstructed state govern- 
ments came into existence. There was the possibility that 
the incumbents would refuse to yield office, and that could 
be embarrassing, especially if the matter was brought before 
the courts. 

It is perhaps, useless to speculate upon the considerations, 
which produced so sudden a change in the mind of the District 
Commander, as to cause him to modify his first order providing 
for the inauguration of the civil government. There is no ac- 
counting for the vagaries of military caprice, especially when 
the caprice is the result of an utter ignorance of law and of 
usage in civil affairs. 

The Daily Sentinel (Raleigh) contended that if General 
Canby's object was to avoid an "awkward dilemma," then he 
had "jumped out of the frying pan into the fire," and by his 
"boggling proceedings" had placed the governor-elect in an 
"ungraceful" position. 88 

Canby also took this step because many of the candidates- 
elect in North and South Carolina could not take the test 
oath of July 2, 1862. Until the ninth section of the Third 
Reconstruction Act was nullified in each of the states under- 
going reconstruction that oath was required of all its appoint- 
ed or elected officials. It was, unfortunately, a technicality 
that debarred "many active and zealous friends of the Union 
and of restoration" from holding office and, Canby main- 
tained, it ought to be dispensed with at once. Indeed, he 
recommended that course to Congress. 

To continue the disabilities which exclude these persons is to 
deprive the government still further of the services of intelli- 
gent and well-disposed men, whose technical disqualification is 
their only fault, and whose aid is essentially important to the 
speedy organization and successful working of the new State 
governments. The removal of the disabilities, while it will not 
jeopardize any interest which it is the policy of the government 
of the United States to conserve and foster, will, in my judg- 
ment, not only meet the approval of a large majority of the 
people of the two States, but will disarm much of the opposition 

Daily Sentinel, July 3, 1868. 

"The Great Reconstruction" 73 

which the new State governments must expect to encounter, and 
contribute greatly to the permanent success of the work of re- 

Canby thought it would be "inexpedient" to dispense with 
the requirement which he desired to see relaxed if there 
were any "personal considerations" prejudicial to the officers- 
elect, but he did not know of any such objections. 89 

Canby considered it "so important" to organize the new 
administrations before military control was withdrawn that 
he went ahead and adopted the recently recognized consti- 
tutions of North and South Carolina as the fundamental law 
of each state. 90 He held that the Congressional approval of 
the proposed constitutions made them a part of the Recon- 
struction acts and, to the extent that Congress had directed 
or authorized action under them in advance of the admission 
of the states, dispensed with the provisions of any previous 
laws that conflicted with those charters. 

The law of June 25, 1868, approving the constitutions of [North 
and South Carolina] , and authorizing specific action under them 
[Canby explained], was regarded by me as dispensing with the 
oath of office prescribed by the law of July 2, 1862, first as to the 
members of the general assembly, and, after the ratification of 
the constitutional amendment, to the other State officers duly 
elected and qualified under those constitutions. This construc- 
tion, in its first application, did not include the governor and 
lieutenant governor, but as the organization of the legislature 
would have been incomplete without the lieutenant governor, and 
as the legislative action required by the law might have been 
embarrassed by the action of the old incumbents, the General 
of the Army directed that they should be removed and the 
governor and lieutenant governor elect should be appointed 
in their places. 91 

89 Canby to Chief of Staff, May 4, 1868, "Second Military District," 
House Executive Document No. 276, Fortieth Congress, Second Session, 
2-4, the quote being on the latter page. 

80 Canby to Chief of Staff, May 7, 1868, "Letter on the South Carolina 
Convention," Senate Executive Document No. 55, Fortieth Congress, Second 
Session, 2. 

91 Grant approved Canby's first action. See Canby to B. W. Gillis, 
June 26, 1869, "Test Oath in Virginia," House Miscellaneous Document 
No. 8, Forty-first Congress, Second Session, 16. 

74 The North Carolina Historical Review 

On July 24, 1868, having been notified that the legisla- 
tures of North and South Carolina had ratified the constitu- 
tional amendment known as article XIV, Canby remitted to 
the civil authorities of the two states all the power con- 
ferred upon and exercised by him under the act of March 2, 
1867. 92 The "dominion of arms" was over and the people of 
the Carolinas turned to face civil radical rule. Nevertheless, 
the press rejoiced; the Wilmington Journal, for example, 

It gives us pleasure ... to publish the final order of the 
Commander of this Military District. We may need the presence 
of the military to check the revolutionary schemes of the Radi- 
cals, and if so, we trust we may be favored with an officer and 
not a partisan — a soldier full of honor and justice, and not the 
tool of designing and bad men. 93 

Could the editor have been referring to Canby? 

Before making a final analysis of the general's work in the 
Second Military District, mention must be made of one other 
service that Canby performed while he was in command 
of the Carolinas. Except for the first month of his tour of 
duty there, he was supervisory assistant commissioner of 
the Freedmen's Bureau for the limits of his district. 94 

It was only natural that this should have come to pass, 
for it was unquestionably desirable to have under the same 
direction the bureau officers and the other military personnel 
who were entrusted with the protection of persons and prop- 
erty by the acts of Congress. 95 The assistant commissioners 
for North and South Carolina were therefore ordered to re- 
port to Canby for instructions, although they continued to 

92 General Order No. 145, July 24, 1868, Second Military District, 
General Orders, 1868. 

93 Quoted in the Charleston Courier, August 10, 1868. Also see the Charles- 
ton Courier, July 21, 1868. 

94 Commissioner-General 0. 0. Howard to Canby, November 29, 1867, 
Freedmen's Bureau, Letter Sent, 1867. The correct title of this War De- 
partment agency was the Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen, and Abandoned 

95 Commissioner-General 0. 0. Howard to Canby, October 23, 1867, Freed- 
men's Bureau, Letter Sent, 1867. Canby to Howard, November 4, 1867, 
Second Military District, Letters Sent, II, 248-249. Also see Caziarc to Gen- 
eral N. A. Miles, October 23, 1867, Second Military District, Letters Sent, 
II, No. 1044. 1867. 

"The Great Reconstruction" 75 

communicate directly with bureau headquarters in Wash- 

Canby did not have the time or the inclination to control 
the administrative details of the Carolina bureaux, hence 
that was left in the hands of the assistant commissioners. 96 
He could not relieve or discharge any bureau agent, 97 but he 
could and did appoint the several post commanders in the 
district to be sub-assistant commissioners of the bureau 
within the limits of their stations. 98 That action created some 
consternation and jealousy, both on the part of General 
Nelson A. Miles, the assistant commissioner for North Caro- 
lina, and General R. K. Scott, his counterpart to the south. 
They feared that the commanding general was usurping their 
rightful duties. 99 

In his role as supervisory assistant commissioner, Canby 
advised the assistant commissioners and granted or withheld 
authority in matters pertaining to the freedmen. 100 In par- 
ticular, however, all during this period, he was especially 
concerned about the effect on the Carolinas of the failure of 
the crops and the fall in cotton prices. 

It was partially on this account that Governor Orr had 
protested Canby's consolidation of the troops. He was fearful 
lest those thrown out of work by this unfortunate turn of 
events would be forced to plunder and steal in order to keep 
alive. 101 The possibility of "grave disorders" arising from the 
fact that the Negroes were unable to find employment or 
procure food was undoubted, and Canby assured the gov- 
ernor that "serious consideration" had been given to the 

96 See Canby to Howard, November 4, 1867, Second Military District 
Letters Sent, II, 248-249. 

97 The assistant commissioners did that or it was done by Howard. See 
Howard to Canby, December 13, 1867, and Howard to General R. K. Scott, 
December 13, 1867, Freedmen's Bureau, Letter Sent, 1867. 

98 General Order No. 145, December 6, 1867, see Caziarc to Commanding 
Officer, Wilmington, N. C, December 17, 1867, Second Military District, 
Letters Sent, No. 1838, 1867. The replaced officers were volunteers and 
civilians who had been acting as agents. For an account of a bureau agent 
in Greenville, South Carolina, see John W. De Forest, A Union Officer in 
Reconstruction (New Haven, 1948). 

99 See Scott to Caziarc, December 10, 1867 ; Howard to Scott, December 13, 
1867; and Howard to Miles, December 11, 1867, Freedmen's Bureau, Letter 
Sent, 1867. Scott became Governor of South Carolina in 1868. 

100 Second Military District, Letters Sent, 1867-1868, passim. 

101 Orr to Canby, November 29 and December 18, 1867, Orr Letter Books, 
III, 238 and 328. 

76 The North Carolina Historical Review 

subject and that every precaution was being taken to guard 
against that danger. 102 He had noticed the increase in pil- 
fering too. 103 

On December 20, 1867, Canby addressed a letter to the 
chief of staff inviting his attention to the destitution and 
suffering likely to occur during the coming months unless 
special ration issues were authorized. He estimated that 
30,000 Negroes in the seaboard region of South Carolina 
alone (and that was the section hardest hit) were without 
jobs and were consequently without the means of support. 

How to avert the difficulties which might be expected to 
stem from "a population idle from necessity, and impelled 
by hunger," was a question of the "gravest character." 

If direct issues of food are made [Canby declared], we incur 
the risk of encouraging idleness, and its attendant vices, and 
of creating a proletarian population, that will look to the 
Government for relief, whenever misfortune, want of thrift, or 
idleness reduces them to want. 

If, on the other hand, the government interfered in the em- 
ployment process, Canby contended that the precedent thus 
established would be "almost as dangerous." 

He believed that no gratuitious issues should be made 
except to the infirm and helpless, that relief should be given 
to the poor only and then in amounts necessary to prevent 
suffering. The issues, moreover, should be in the shape of 
advances, or loans, which were to be repaid when the next 
crop was gathered. Furthermore, he felt that these advances 
ought to be a lien against the crop, "not only to assure the 
Government against loss, but to impress upon those to whom 
they are made, habits of industry and thrift, by considera- 
tions of interest, as well as morals." 

He wanted these advances to be made to the colored 
people who were cultivating lands for themselves, and only 
when this was impossible, to planters who, without some 
help, would be unable to give employment to the freedmen. 

102 Canby to Chief of Staff, December 23, 1867, Second Military District 
Letters Sent, No. 1891, 1867. Also Canby to Orr, December 24, 1867, Canby 

103 Canby to Chief of Staff, December 23, 1867, Second Military District 
Letters Sent, No. 1891, 1867. 

"The Great Reconstruction" 77 

The prospect was gloomy and Canby was preparing for the 
worst. He was even thinking of establishing labor agencies 
to disseminate information and thus diminish the necessity 
of making either issues or advances. 104 

This doleful account, and others like it, impressed the 
cabinet, 105 and Commissioner-General O. O. Howard, of the 
Freedmen's Bureau, was instructed to take action. Rations 
were issued to refugees and freedmen, 106 and, after February 
27, 1868, the advances made to aid the depressed agricultural 
interests in South Carolina were considered liens upon the 
property of the persons to whom they were granted. 107 For 
those destitute individuals who were not included in the 
ministrations of the Freedmen's Bureau, Canby directed the 
poor wardens of the two states to apply to their relief the 
proceeds derived from licenses, forfeitures, and fines ema- 
nating from the sale of spirituous or intoxicating liquors. 108 

On August 5, 1868, General Canby relinquished command 
of the troops in the late Second Military District and return- 
ed to Washington, there to resume command of the depart- 
ment he had left almost a year before. 109 He had experienced 
many vicissitudes during the months of constructive and 
unconstructive reconstruction in the Carolinas. Accused of 
radicalism by some, he was certainly not the most lenient 

104 Canby to Chief of Staff, December 20, 1867, Second Military District, 
Letters Sent, No. 1861, 1867. 

105 John T. Morse, Jr., (ed.), Diary of Gideon Welles (Boston, 1911), III, 
245-246; and Theodore C. Pease and J. G. Randall, (eds.), The Diary of 
Orville Hickman Browning (Springfield, 1925 and 1933), II, 170. The entry 
of December 24, 1867 in both. 

106 In April, 1868, 7,357 rations were issued in North Carolina. The average 
number of persons assisted daily between September 1, 1867 and September 
1, 1868 was 1,363. In South Carolina it was 1,944. See Report of the Com- 
missioner of the Freedmen's Bureau for 1868 in "Report of the Secretary 
of War," House Executive Document No. 1, Fortieth Congress, Third Ses- 
sion, 1039 and 1027. 

107 Report of the Commissioners of the Freedman's Bureau for 1868 in 
"Report of the Secretary of War," House Executive Document, No. 2, 
Fortieth Congress, Third Session, 1041. That was not done in North Caro- 
lina, see Miles to Caziarc, May 8, 1868, Freedmen's Bureau, Assistant Com- 
missioner for North Carolina, Letters Sent, No. 778, 1868. Also see Apple- 
ton's Annual Cyclopedia, 1868, 693. 

108 General Order No. 164, December 31, 1867, "General Orders-Recon- 
struction," 83. Also see Canby to Worth, March 26, 1868, Second Military 
District, Letters Sent, No. 1202, 1868. 

109 General Order No. 150, August 5, 1868, Second Military District, 
General Orders, 1868; and General Order No. 49, August 14, 1868, De- 
partment of Washington, General Orders, 1868, 56. 

78 The North Carolina Historical Review 

of the military governors. To say, as did John S. Reynolds, 
that his rule was "as brutish a tyranny as ever marked the 
course of any government whose agents and organs claimed 
it to be civilized," is going too far. 110 The evidence belies it. 

There is no denying that Canby had complete control 
over North and South Carolina. 111 As Major Birkhimer has 
pointed out in his treatise on military government and 
martial law, "It is difficult to conceive of a more rigid system 
of martial law" than that which Congress established in the 
spring and summer of 1867. For "completeness of design and 
efficacy of measures for carrying them into execution," 
nothing could surpass the Reconstruction acts. 112 Congres- 
sional Reconstruction was, as Governor Worth maintained, a 
"military despotism." 

Having to function as the legislature, executive, and 
judiciary, all in one, was a great responsibility, but Canby 
did not shrink from the task. Acting as the agent of Congress, 
he was guided by the principle that the power conferred 
upon him by the Reconstruction acts was "limited and de- 
termined by the clear intent of those laws as indicated by 
the duties devolved upon the District Commanders and its 
exercise must be incident or necessary to the full and proper 
performance of their duties." 113 When they were not, he 
"uniformly declined to ratify [the] ordinances or declara- 
tions" made by the conventions authorized under the law of 
March 23, 1867. 114 In addition, he took "particular pains" not 
to know how the political parties" stood in his district. 115 

It was only natural for the conservative whites of North 
and South Carolina, like their brethren throughout the South, 
to complain and to make out the best case possible for them- 
selves in the eyes of the rest of the nation. To that end they 

110 Reynolds, Reconstruction in South Carolina, 98. 

111 The general of the army had supervisory control over his actions, and 
in cases where the death penalty was invoked, the President had to give 
his consent. 

113 Major William E. Birkhimer, Military Government and Martial Law 
(Kansas City, 1914), 482, 485. 

113 Canby to B. F. Flanders, January 23, 1869, Fifth Military District, 
Letters Sent, No. 289, 1869. 

114 Canby to William G. Hale, February 11, 1869, Fifth Military District, 
Letters Sent, No. 640, 1869. 

115 See Canby's interview with the reporter of the New York Sun, quoted 
in the Daily Richmond Whig, September 2, 1869. 

"The Great Reconstruction" 79 

often perverted and misrepresented the facts, construing 
almost everything that had to do with Congressional Recon- 
struction in the worst imaginable light. Canby's jury order 
was a perfect example of that strategem. 

It is understandable that they should have used every 
means at their command to try to throw off the yoke of Con- 
gressional Reconstruction as quickly as possible and to re- 
sume their former way of life. Since the methods of opposi- 
tion available to them were extremely limited, they adopted 
the course of passive resistance. With hindsight, that proce- 
dure can be seen to have been undesirable, and to that extent 
they must therefore share the blame for what happened. 

General Canby had little to do with the original registra- 
tion in the Second Military District. A few Carolinians may 
have been disfranchised on account of his interpretation of 
the law, but probably as many were enfranchised by the 
liberality with which he revised the registration lists. It will 
be recalled that an increase of 23,000 resulted after this 
occurred. 116 Even so, by the vote recorded in each of the 
elections, first on the convention question and then on the 
ratification of the constitutions, it is evident that it was not 
he who kept the whites away from the polls. In South Caro- 
lina, in particular, it was they who refused to avail them- 
selves of their opportunity. Instead, they preferred to re- 
main quiescent, thus fostering the growth of a myth about 
how military "satraps" did the bidding of a Radical Congress 
and foisted off on them constitutions and officials they did 
not want, but about whom they could do nothing. It is a 
half-truth. In a moment of compassion, Jonathan Worth once 
referred to Canby and the other officers who were called 
upon to carry out the congressional program as "poor 
devils/' 117 How right he was! It was unfortunate for the army 
that its officer corps had to be made the instrument of radical 

Undoubtedly, Canby sympathized with the congressional 
policy toward the South, but he was not vindictive. No die- 

118 Those who could have registered previously and had failed to do so 
account for most of this number. See Canby Report, 1868, 340-341. 

n7 Worth to John Kerr, January 1, 1868, Hamilton, Worth Correspond- 
ence, II, 1101. 

80 The North Carolina Historical Review 

hard radical of the Stevens-Sumner stripe would have ever 
countenanced an easing of the reconstruction code such as 
Canby proposed. If anything, Canby's rule was paternalistic, 
especially toward the Negro, and many of the measures that 
he initiated were beneficial to the Carolinas. Charles W. 
Ramsdell's opinion of Canby's administration in Texas is 
applicable also to his conduct of Carolina affairs. It was 
"vigorous and firm, but just." 118 

"Wise statesmanship" has been attributed to Canby; 119 
perhaps that is too high an evaluation. Integrity he had; con- 
ciliatory in spirit and with an understanding of the difficul- 
ties that lay before him, he tried to be a good military 
governor— whether he was or was not is a matter of personal 

"* Charles W. Ramsdell, Reconstruction in Texas (New York, 1910), 266. 

119 George W. Cullum, Biographical Register of the Officers and Graduates 
of the United States Military Academy . . . 1802-1890 (Washington, 1891), 
II, 21. 




By Margaret Burr DesChamps 

Sumter District, South Carolina, provides an interesting 
case study in the social structure of the rural South on the 
eve of the Civil War. The area in which it lay was frequently 
spoken of as the Middle Country— a name which applied to 
its geographical position, and rather aptly described the 
folkways of its people. Akin to both Tidewater and Up- 
country, its social life did not partake exclusively of the 
flavor of either. The district, located between the Fall Line 
and the Tidewater, was comprised of a variety of soils which 
formed the basis for a diversified agricultural life. Although 
most of the country was flat and the soil generally produc- 
tive, extensive tracts of sand existed throughout the area, 
especially in the northwest. There lay the High Hills of 
Santee, a picturesque range which were the refuge of poor 
whites and a favorite summer retreat for planters from the 
Low Country. 1 

Whether they resided in the sandhills, in Sumterville, or 
along the banks of the Black River, the people of the district 
were predominantly interested in agriculture. Although few 
of the 6,857 whites and 320 free colored people left written 
records of their lives and endeavors, the head of each family 
sketched in profile his worldly accomplishments when he 
made his brief report to the census enumerator in I860. 2 

, * For a description of Sumter District see William G. Simms, The 
Geography of South Carolina (Charleston, 1843), 132-135. 

2 In preparing this paper microfilm copies of the Sumter District manu- 
script census schedules for the Seventh Census (1850) and Eighth Census 
(1860) were used. Schedules I (Free Inhabitants) and II (Slave Inhabi- 
tants), owned by Emory University, were microfilmed by the Bureau of 
Census, Department of Commerce, Washington. Schedules IV (Produc- 
tions of Agriculture), V (Productions of Industry), and VI (Social Sta- 
tistics) were microfilmed for the writer by the South Carolina Historical 
Commission, Columbia, where the original schedules are deposited. The 
method used in studying the census schedules is essentially that of Frank 
and Harriet Owsley who begin with Schedule IV and supplement it with 
Schedules I and II. The process is explained in Herbert Weaver, Missis- 
sippi Farmers, 1850-1860 (Nashville, 1945), 14-17. Except when noted, all 
subsequent information about the agricultural population is taken from 
these schedules. 


82 The North Carolina Historical Review 

About seventy-five per cent of the 1508 white heads of 
families and forty per cent of the 84 free Negro heads of 
families indicated that they devoted all or a portion of their 
time to farming. 3 An excellent index to the lives of eighty-two 
per cent of these agriculturalists is given in Schedule IV of 
the unpublished census manuscripts, which is entitled Pro- 
ductions of Agriculture. While it is regrettable that a portion 
of the rural people were not included in this report, it still 
provides a valid cross section for study. An analysis of the 
omitted farm population shows that this group included both 
the poor and the well-to-do. 

The southern planter was well represented in the ante- 
bellum society of Sumter District. At the top of this group 
were the Pinckneys, Rutledges, Hugers and friends who an- 
nually moved from their Low Country residences to summer 
homes in Statesburgh, Bradford Springs and other communi- 
ties of the High Hills. 4 While they composed the top segment 
of society in the district, about twenty-three per cent of the 
families reported on Schedule IV as engaged in agriculture 
were members of the planter class. About one-half of the 
16,682 slaves in the district were in the hands of this class. 
However, only eight per cent were large planters who culti- 
vated as many as 500 acres of land and owned fifty or more 

Although these large slaveholders were found throughout 
the district, they were especially numerous in Statesburgh 
and Providence. Typical of the Episcopalian planters in the 
High Hills was William Richardson. Richardson, who found 
little of interest in the "dry and monotonous Sand Hills" 
other than horse racing, depended on overseers to manage 
his crops and sent his sons to boarding school in Winnsboro. 
His wife, a devout church member, spent most of her time 
making jockey outfits that would "answer for Charleston," 
conferring with overseers, and writing her sons of the evils 
of drinking, card playing, and cursing. Upon the young boys, 

3 Ten per cent of the white heads and forty-five per cent of the free 
Negroes did not state an occupation, and fifteen per cent of both groups 
indicated that they were engaged in some non-farm occupation. 

* Lawrence F. Brewster, Summer Migrations and Resorts of South Caro- 
lina Low-Country Planters (Durham, 1947), 46-48, 74-75. 

Population in Sumter District 83 

James and Dick, she placed the responsibility of keeping 
the family in a position of affluence and leadership. Her let- 
ters to them reveal the anxiety of an elder generation over 
the continuance of family prestige. 5 

Among the Richardson's wealthy neighbors was J. A. 
Colclough. The size of his plantation home is indicated by 
the inventory of his estate in which the administrator enum- 
erated and described more than fifty chairs and twenty-five 
mattresses. Among the furnishings illustrative of the Col- 
clough mode of living were glass shades, glass candlesticks, 
brass fire dogs and fends, a piano cover, a set of dining 
tables, books, and one lot of silverware. 6 In 1860 the personal 
property of Colclough's widow was valued at $436,000. 

In the Black River section of the district lived well-to-do 
Presbyterian planters like Samuel McBride. In his will Mc- 
Bride left explicit instructions as to how he wanted his plan- 
tation operated after his death. He desired an overseer "of 
good moral character" to be hired to manage his lands. By 
sale of the "more inferior, the dirty and immoral ones" and 
the "unruly or Troublesome," he wished his slaves to be re- 
duced to "not more than Thirty working hands . . . exclus- 
ive of House Servants and Mechanicks." These slaves were 
to receive two suits of clothing and one pair of shoes each 
year. 7 

Of especial concern to McBride was the education of his 
son, James, who would some day succeed him as master of 
the plantation. His friend and neighbor George Cooper 
was entrusted with the superintendance of James' school- 
ing. The boy was to spend two or more years learning 
"some useful Mechanical art" before entering college and 
was to "be allowed much exercise in the country air." But 
"my greatest desire," stated McBride, "is that he be early 
taught the great truths of the christian Religion as con- 
tained in the scriptures of the old and new Testament, also 
the catechisms of the Presbyterian church, and that he be 

B James B. Richardson Papers (Duke University). 

"Sumter District Wills, 1860-1867, 67-74 (Sumter County Courthouse). 

7 Sumter District Wills, 1839-1862, 330-334. 

84 The North Carolina Historical Review 

taught to obey implicitly those who have the rule over 
him these I prize above all worldly considerations." 8 

Most Sumter planters, of course, did not enjoy the wealth 
of the Richardsons, Colcloughs, and McBrides. Isaac Lenoir, 
who owned forty-eight slaves and farmed 300 acres of 
improved land in 1850, belonged to the small planter group. 
At his death in 1859 his household furniture was returned as: 
one set of dining tables, one secretary, one sideboard, one 
card table, one lot of crockery and glass, one dozen chairs, 
one rocking chair, and bedsteads. 9 Yet, families like the 
Lenoirs lived comfortably and exerted considerable influ- 
ence in community affairs. 

The papers of Robert Fraser, small planter on Black River, 
show how widespread the interests of men of this group 
might be. In addition to managing his land and slaves, 
Fraser was at various times: captain in the militia, member 
of the Society of Vigilance, school teacher, magistrate, pres- 
ident of his temperance society, member of the debater's 
club, clerk of the session of the Bishopville Presbyterian 
Church, school trustee, and overseer of the road on which 
he lived. An avid reader, he subscribed to various periodi- 
cals including the Southern Presbyterian, True Southron, 
Columbia Hive, Christian World, South Carolina Temper- 
ance Advocate, and Santee Banner, and frequently wrote 
letters to the editors on matters which he believed to be of 
public interest. Indeed, one wonders how he found time to 
write so frequently to newspaper editors, friends and rela- 
tives who moved west, citizens of Charleston who might 
give information on his prospective son-in-law, associates 
in the Sons of Temperance, and even President Lincoln 
whose aid he sought in receiving payment for taking the 
census of I860. 10 In spite of his many activities, Fraser was 
a successful farmer. 

A study of the manuscript census returns reveals that 
most Sumter District farmers were yeomen who cultivated 
from one to 199 acres of improved land and about one-half 

8 Sumter District Wills, 1839-1862, 330-334. 

9 Sumter District Inventories and Sales, 1858-1867, 55-57. 

10 Robert Fraser Papers (in posession of Francis J. DesChamps, Bishop- 
ville, South Carolina). 

Population in Sumter District 85 

of whom owned slaves. 11 One of these plain people who 
desired to sell his farm in 1850 described it as: 

A highly improved Farm in the vicinity of Sumterville, con- 
taining about two hundred acres of land, only fifty of which 
is cleared the balance being well wooded. — Said Farm has on it 
a commodious Dwelling House, nearly new, with Stables and 
suitable Outbuildings all in fine order. — Also a Garden in a 
high state of cultivation and a fine Fruit Orchard. 12 

While the main crop of the yeomen was cotton, considerable 
attention was paid to sweet potatoes and corn. These were 
cultivated with the help of slaves and members of the family 
who sometimes worked together in the fields. 

Among the substantial yeomen in the district was Elisha 
Spencer who combined subsistence farming with storekeep- 
ing at a crossing on Lynch's River. It was no great love of 
the mercantile business that accounted for Spencer's build- 
ing a little store in his front yard. Selling a penny's worth of 
candy, a gallon of sticky molasses, and listening to the idle 
chatter of the men who stood around his stove, he described 
as loathsome activity. But he seemed to have little choice of 
occupation. Possessing no formal education, he could not 
easily enter a profession, and since he believed that slavery 
was morally wrong he did not aspire to become a planter. 13 
Instead, he became a subsistence farmer who planted seven 
acres and owned land and buildings valued at $700. 

Like many a farmer's wife, Mary Spencer found her days 
full. She spun cloth, made clothes for her six children— even 
suits for the boys—, baked cakes for her nieces, and kept 
an open house for relatives and visiting ministers. 14 Her life 
was further complicated by the fact that her Connecticut 

11 Twenty-one per cent of slaveholders in Sumter District engaged in 
agriculture owned from one to four slaves, twenty per cent owned from 
five to nine, twenty-two per cent owned from ten to nineteen. Thus sixty- 
three per cent of the slaveholders were farmers owning less than twenty 

13 Black River Watchman (Sumterville), September 14, 1850. 

13 "Reminiscences of Mattie Spencer MacDowell" (typed copy in pos- 
session of the writer). Mrs. MacDowell, who writes from a remarkably 
detached and objective point of view, was a grand-daughter of Elisha and 
Mary Spencer. 

14 Mary Spencer to Mary Fraser, undated letters, in Spencer-Fraser 
Papers (in possession of Mrs. Mattie S. MacDowell, York, South Carolina). 

86 The North Carolina Historical Review 

husband constantly irritated a community whose opinions 
on slavery, the way of salvation, and the merits of the South- 
ern cause, he did not share. 15 It is well understood why Mary 
Spencer would exclaim to her mother: "O I have so much 
on my hands and mind I don't know which way to turn." 16 

In spite of her many household responsibilities Mary Spen- 
cer showed concern for the social life of her children. 
Throughout the fifties she arranged for them to visit their 
cousins when possible, and children were frequent guests 
in their home. Such visits were possible because Mary's 
father gave her two or three slaves to help with the house 
work and garden. While the children seem not to have had 
big parties at home, their parents let them attend such fes- 
tivities as Christmas trees at the local academy. 17 

The Spencer household was marked by economy and 
piety, yet home life was not drab and sombre. By the sixties 
their home was in no sense lavishly furnished, but was color- 
ful and comfortable. For example, one daughter had a grey 
bedroom suite with pink rosebuds painted on it, and the 
guest who slept under the beautiful pink marseilles quilt 
was seldom again to find a comparable covering. 18 

While the pleasures of simple living enjoyed by the Spen- 
cers did not extend throughout the agricultural population, 
only a small percentage of the farm operators on or off 
Schedule IV seem to fall below the status of yeomen. Of 
the heads of families on this schedule, eighteen per cent 
owned no real estate, but many of these people owned slaves 
or cultivated sizeable tracts of land. Among the eighteen 
per cent of the farm population not appearing on Schedule 
IV, one would expect to find the under-privileged of the 
farm group, as it might be assumed that these people did 
not operate farms which produced $100 in cash crops. 19 
Yet, investigation shows that twenty-six per cent of this 
group owned real estate and ten per cent owned slaves. 

16 "Reminiscences of Mattie Spencer MacDowell." 

16 Mary Spencer to Mary Fraser, undated letter, in Spencer-Fraser 

17 Mary Spencer to Mary Fraser, undated letters. 

18 "Reminiscences of Mattie Spencer MacDowell." 

19 Only those operators whose farms yielded as much as $100 in cash 
crops are included on Schedule IV. 

Population in Sumter District 


Among the thirty-four men who composed the lowest eco- 
nomic bracket, those who owned neither real estate nor 
personal property, were two paupers and three illiterates; 
but they were not representative of the group. As a whole 
these non-propertied people were young men just beginning 
the business of farming. A number told the census taker 
that they had married within the previous year and others 
were unmarried. Some of them bore the names of prosperous 
yeomen and planter families. 

About six per cent of the heads of families engaged in 
agriculture in 1860 were overseers. In addition to these sixty- 
five men, there were twenty-four others who lived in the 
homes of the planters employing them. An overseer living 
in his employer's home was doubtless accepted by the family 
and their friends; sometimes he might even be a member 
of the family. For example, Isaac Richbourg owned 200 acres 
of improved land and eleven slaves, but two of his sons began 
their careers as overseers and two as farm laborers. Nor were 
overseers living in their own homes always the economically 
downtrodden of the district. James Thornhill, a fifty-year-old 
overseer who owned no real estate and only $100 in personal 
property serves as an illustration of this point. The Thorn- 
hills probably lived well. A seventeen-year-old son in the 
family who worked as a farm laborer, owned $12,000 in 
real estate and $22,100 in personal property. Whether this 
was the property of his father or mother which they chose 
to list in his name or a legacy from some deceased relative 
is unknown. 

There were among the farm population of Sumter Dis- 
trict many farmers who were poor in comparison to the 
slaveholdings and land holdings of planters. Some of these 
were unquestionably poor whites, probably called "po' buck- 
ras" by Sumter people of the 1850's, but to determine their 
number from the census schedules seems to be an impossible 
task. Slaveholding and land holding alone are not accurate 
guides for setting apart poor whites from the rest of the 
population. Although eight per cent of the farm operators 
on Schedule IV in 1860 did not own slaves and did not state 
that they cultivated any land, some of these were free 

88 The North Carolina Historical Review 

Negroes and others were professional people not dependent 
on their farms for their livelihood. While eighteen per cent of 
the operators on Schedule IV did not own land, many of 
them held slaves or considerable personal property. Even 
literacy fails as a test for determining poor whites, for many 
of the seven per cent of the heads of farm families who were 
illiterate were substantial land owners and slaveholders. 
Furthermore, as all Southerners know, the decisive factor in 
applying this term is not always the absence of wealth and 

By use of a master chart combining information from 
Schedules I, II, and IV, on occupation, real estate owned, 
literacy, slaveholding, agricultural productions, and area of 
residence, some ideas about poor whites in Sumter District 
can be formed. Small groups of slaveless families appear 
clustered together in several areas of the district. Many of 
them were small landowners, and most of them claimed to 
be literate, but virtually none of them were sending their 
children to school. Today among the tenant farmers and 
farm laborers of old Sumter District are people bearing the 
same family names as these underprivileged people of 1860. 

The largest group of these probable poor whites, some 
forty to fifty families, made their homes in the sandy foot 
hills of Bradford Springs. It was doubtless this area that the 
editor of the Sumter Banner had in mind when he said that 
"in an area of three or four miles square in the wealthy and 
intelligent District of Sumter, there can be found forty-three 
children of the proper age to be sent to school, who have 
never seen a school-house, who cannot read or write their 

" 9ft 


Throughout her life Mary Boykin Chesnut lived on plan- 
tations in or near the High Hills, and she was well acquaint- 
ed with the Sandhillers. In the closing pages of her Diary 
from Dixie she reminisced over her life-long acquaintance 
with a proud, often arrogant, superstitious, and ignorant 
people. Milly Trimlin she remembered as "a perfect specimen 
of the Sandhill tackey race." "Her skin," Mrs. Chesnut recall- 
ed, "was yellow and leathery, and even the whites of her 

20 Sumter Banner, July 27, 1852. 

Population in Sumter District 89 

eyes were bilious in color. She was stumpy and lean, hard- 
featured, horny fisted." In recounting the kindnesses of her 
family to some of these people Mrs. Chesnut failed to un- 
derstand why they remained Sandhillers from generation to 
generation. "Never," she wrote, "were people so aided in 
every way as these people are!" Regardless of her failure to 
understand them, she realized that they possessed the same 
emotions that lie deep within all people. Her mother, she 
stated, offered a ride to an old Sandhill acquaintance after 
a big meeting at the church. The woman replied: "No, no! 
Never mind me. I'm done in this world. Take your namesake. 
Let 'em all see my girl setting by you in the carriage." 21 

As Mrs. Chesnut's diary illustrates, contacts of poor whites 
with yeomen and planters were confined to such occasions 
as political rallies and elections, camp meetings and revivals, 
and the visits which the Sandhillers made to beg or borrow. 
But planters and yeomen were brought together through kin- 
ship, business, and social organizations. They worked to- 
gether in the Sumter Agricultural Association, sent their 
children to the local schools, attended the same churches, 
staged temperance society parades, joined in debating clubs, 
and held militia picnics and balls which the whole country- 
side enjoyed. 22 While the poor whites showed neither inde- 
pendence in voting nor initiative in seeking office, both yeo- 
men and planters manifested keen interest in seeking office, 
and desired to become officeholders. 23 Good feeling and 
freedom of association marked the relationships of plain folk 
and aristocracy. 

A considerable number of free Negroes lived in Sumter 
District in the 1850's. 24 In 1860, five per cent of all heads of 
families in the district were thus classified. Most of these 
people lived in the country, although only forty per cent 
of the free Negro heads of families were engaged in agri- 

21 Mary Boykin Chesnut, Diary from Dixie (edited by Ben Ames Williams, 
Boston, 1949), 542-544. 

22 See Sumter Banner, Sumter Watchman, and Black River Watchman 
for the 1850's. 

23 The names of candidates appearing in the Sumter Banner, April 12, 
1853, were checked on Schedule I (unpublished), Seventh Census, 1850. 

24 In this group were people of uncertain origin and race who were 
commonly called "Turks" by Sumter citizens. 

90 The North Carolina Historical Review 

culture. The forty-five per cent of the free Negro popula- 
tion who did not list an occupation probably supported 
themselves as domestic servants. For example, Flora, who 
owned no real estate but had personal property valued at 
$200, offered "her services to the citizens of Sumter and ad- 
joining Districts in the preparation of bridal feasts, party 
suppers, &c." 25 

Free Negroes engaged in agriculture seem to have enjoyed 
a higher economic status than the remainder of the Negro 
population. Two free Negroes, Richard Gayle and William 
Ellison, were slave owners in 1860. As Richard Gayle owned 
neither real estate nor personal property, his eight slaves 
may have been members of his own family whom he held 
through legal technicality. William Ellison, however, was 
a large planter holding sixty-four slaves and cultivating 500 
acres of improved land. He and his family lived in the midst 
of the wealthy families of Statesburgh and occupied a back 
pew in the local Episcopal church. 26 A gin maker by occu- 
pation, Ellison's advertisements appeared frequently in Sum- 
terville newspapers. 27 

Most of the free Negroes lived in groups instead of scat- 
tered throughout the population. The largest community, 
consisting of about twenty-three families, was found at 
Manchester. It appears that in Manchester and elsewhere 
free Negroes and underprivileged white families associated 
with each other— even to the extent of living together. Bill 
Tab, a free Negro farm laborer who owned no real estate, 
was listed as the head of the house in which he resided. 
Living with him was a white man forty years old who gave 
his occupation as farming and owned real estate valued at 
$600. An even more striking case is that of Mary Rodgers, a 
propertyless black woman, with whom a white Baptist 
preacher, his wife, and two children lived. Scattered among 
the census enumerator's listing of free Negro families one 
finds the names of white families who owned little or no 

25 Sumter Banner, March 10, 1852. 

28 Both the house and the pew in the church can still be seen in States- 

27 For example, see Black River Watchman, May 11, 1850. 

Population in Sumter District 


With the exception of the Negroes, whose lot in life re- 
mained wretched, all groups within the free farm population 
of Sumter District prospered in the 1850's. A number of per- 
sons whose names appeared on Schedule IV of the Seventh 
Census ( 1850 ) were selected at random from scattered sec- 
tions of the district and their status in 1850 and 1860 com- 
pared. They were classified in five groups: large planters, 
small planters, slaveholding yeomen, non-slaveholding yeo- 
men, and farmers who owned neither real estate nor slaves. 
In all groups the value of farm implements and real estate 
rose between 1850 and 1860. Slaveless were becoming slave- 
holders and small slave owners were increasing their hold- 
ings. Of the group of ten landless non-slaveholders whose 
farming operations were checked in 1850 and 1860, seven 
became real estate owners during the decade and one be- 
came a slave owner. Observing that the "system and science 
of agriculture in this District is undoubtedly in a state of 
transition," the editor of the Sumter Banner stated in 1854, 
that with "a little more exertion and attention to stock raising" 
Sumter farms would be as productive as "the virgin soils of 
the West." 28 

On the eve of the Civil War Sumter District was, for the 
most part, composed of a prospering people wedded to the 
agrarian life. The advantages and blessings of this life were 
often the subject of local editorials and were most idyllically 
pictured by the Sumter Banner. After stating that the min- 
ister had to please his congregation, the lawyer his towns- 
men, and the merchant and mechanic their community, the 
editor concluded: 

The farmer says just what he pleases; for it was never yet 
discovered that it killed his cattle or rotted his potatoes. And 
the farmer has more leisure time than most mechanics or pro- 
fessional men; or if he has not, it is his own fault. No farmer 
need be a drudge. His flocks in the pasture and his crops in the 
field are growing while he sleeps. ... He relies on nature, who 
labors for him continually, and on nature's God, who never 
slumbers. 29 

28 Sumter Banner, July 19, 1853. 
28 Sumter Banner, July 19, 1854. 


By Francis B. Dedmond 

Theodore Bryant Kingsbury was one of the most dis- 
tinguished journalists North Carolina has produced. 1 Noth- 
ing, however, in his long journalistic career seems to have 
so elated him as two "notices" he received, perhaps early in 
1858, from John R. Thompson and Paul Hamilton Hayne. 
Fifty-four years later, Kingsbury wrote: 

In November, 1857, I began the publication of the Oxford 
Leisure Hour, 2 a literary weekly which achieved considerable 
reputation. A short time after I received probably two of the 
best notices of any during my career from two distinguished 
men of letters, who were editing magazines in the South: 
John R. Thompson, editor of the [Southern'] Literary Mes- 
senger, published in Richmond, Va., and Paul H. Hayne, who 
was editing, at the same time, Russell's Magazine, a monthly 
containing some ninety pages. He and Mr. Thompson both gave 

1 T. B. Kingsbury was born in Raleigh, N. C, August 28, 1828. He at- 
tended the Oxford Male Academy, Love joy Military Academy at Raleigh, 
and the University of North Carolina. According to Kingsbury, the first 
article he ever wrote for a newspaper was written from Raleigh on July 5, 
1845. It appeared in the Oxford Ledger and was a report of the address 
of Duncan K. MacRae at a Fourth of July celebration. For the next fifteen 
years, Kingsbury wrote articles for several papers. Early in 1858, he be- 
came editor of The Leisure Hour: A Literary and Family News Journal, 
which was published in Oxford, N. C. Kingsbury left The Leisure Hour 
in January 1859. On January 9, 1867 he became editor of a new weekly 
and semi-weekly known as the Warrenton Indicator. He left The Indicator 
on May, 29, 1868 to accept a position with the Southern Baptist Conven- 
tion, apparently at Memphis, Tennessee. By this time Kingsbury was 
already widely known, and in the same year, 1868, Wake Forest College 
conferred on him the D.D. degree. In March of 1869, he became associate 
editor of the Raleigh Sentinel. On three occasions, he declined the editor- 
ship of the North Carolina Christian Advocate. He edited Colonel Pool's 
Educational Journal in 1874-75; and shortly thereafter became editor 
of Colonel Pool's Our Living and Our Dead, the official organ of the North 
Carolina branch of the Southern Historical Society, a journal published 
in Raleigh. In 1876, Kingsbury joined the staff of the Wilmington Morning 
Star and served as its editor for twelve years and eight months. In 1888, 
the University of North Carolina conferred on him the LL.D. degree. He 
next joined the staff of the Wilmington Messenger, working on that paper 
for thirteen years. For six months, he edited the Oxford Torchlight, a popu- 
lar weekly. He died in 1913. 

2 Kingsbury is in error here. The first issue of The Leisure Hour: A 
Literary and Family News Journal appeared February 4, 1858, with T. B. 
Kingsbury listed as editor. 


Hayne to Kingsbury 93 

me most cordial notices and I have rarely ever had such pleasant 
references to myself in all my long career since as an editor. 3 

In so far as is known, the "notice" by Thompson did not 
lead to a correspondence between the two men, but, accord- 
ing to Kingbury, he "had the pleasure of a considerable cor- 
respondence" with Paul Hamilton Hayne, 4 the twenty-eight 
year old editor of Russell's Magazine. To judge by Hayne's 
later procedure, it may be assumed that he carefully pre- 
served his correspondence from Kingsbury. However, at the 
time of the bombardment of Charleston during the Civil 
War, Hayne's "beautiful home was burned to the ground, 
and his large handsome library utterly lost" 5 — and, presum- 
ably his carefully preserved correspondence also burned. 6 
Only three of Hayne's letters to Kingsbury from their "con- 
siderable correspondence" have come down to us, and they 
are now in the Southern Historical Collection of the Uni- 
versity of North Carolina. 

The first number of The Leisure Hour: A Literary and 
Family News Journal, a weekly, was published at Oxford, 
North Carolina, February 4, 1858. The paper was owned by 
F. K. Strother and was edited by Kingsbury. In the March 4, 
1858 number, Kingsbury published a highly laudatory ar- 
ticle on Hayne. Hayne is declared to be unsurpassed by no 
remembered American author as a writer of sonnets, "and 
we have no doubt but the reader, if animated with a true 
poetic taste and sympathy, will agree with us that they 
[Hayne's sonnets] are among the best in the language. They 
remind us of Wordsworth and Mrs. Browning, and indicate 
that his is that tone of mind that Voluntarily moves har- 
monious numbers,' " 7 

3 "Farewell Letter by Dr. Kingsbury," in "The North Carolina Review, 
Literary and Historical Section" of the Raleigh News and Observer, Sep- 
tember 3, 1911. 

4 [T. B. Kingsbury], "Review of Hayne's The Mountain of the Lovers," 
Our Living and Dead, III (July, 1875), 139. 

5 Margaret J. Preston, "Biographical Sketch," in Poems of Paul Hamilton 
Hayne (complete edition; Boston: D. Lothrop and Company, 1882), vii. 

9 No letters from Hayne to Kingsbury, for example, are to be found 
in the numerous letters in the Paul Hamilton Hayne Collection of Duke 

7 "Paul H. Hayne," The Leisure Hour (Oxford, N. C), March 4, 1858. 

94 The North Carolina Historical Review 

In the April 1, 1858 issue, Kingsbury published what he 
described as a "graceful little poem . . . from the pen of the 
accomplished Editor of Russell's Magazine." It seems to have 
been written especially for The Leisure Hour; and, so far 
as is known, has not been republished. 

Sunset and Moonshine 


Here, glancing from this breezy Height, 
Whilst the still Day goes slowly down, 

And sombre Evening's shadows brown, 
Close o'er the purple flushing light, 


I mark the softer radiant rest 

Of the calm moon, till now unseen, 
Along the Ocean tides serene, 

Scarce heaving toward the faded West ; 


At first there dawns a ghostly ray, 
Faint as a new-born infant's dreams, 

But soon an ampler glory streams, 
And trembling up the lustrous Bay, 


Long level shafts of silvery glow 

Lead upward to the quiet skies, 
The radiant paths to Paradise 

Revealed when all is dark below. 8 

On April 15, 1858, Kingsbury republished in The Leisure 
Hour Hayne's short tale "The Skaptar Yokul: A Tale of Ice- 
land." Hayne had originally published the tale anonymously 
in Russell's Magazine a year before, but here the tale ap- 
peared under Hayne's name and perhaps for the first time. 
In the next number of The Leisure Hour, April 22, 1858, 
Kingsbury began the republication of Hayne's tale "One Too 
Many: A Tale of the Equinox." This tale too had been pub- 
lished anonymously by Hayne in Russell's for June 1857. 
Kingsbury continued the tale serially under Hayne's name 
in the next three issues of The Leisure Hour, April 29, 1858, 

8 The Leisure Hour (Oxford, N. C), April 1, 1858. 

Hayne to Kingsbury 


May 6, 1858 and May 13, 1858. While "One Too Many" was 
running serially in The Leisure Hour, Hayne wrote the fol- 
lowing letter to Kingsbury: 

Charleston May 4th, 58 
My Dear Sir ; 

Your very courteous letter of the 6th ult was rec d in due 
season, but this is the first opportunity I have had to reply. 

Let me thank you for the kind expressions you employ in ref- 
erence to my vol of Sonnets ; if agreeable to you I shall do myself 
the honor, & pleasure of mailing you another, and more juvenile 
book of verses which was published by Ticknor, & Fields of 
Boston in 1854. 9 

The late nos of the "Leisure Hour" have all reached me, & I 
may say truly that the better acquainted I become with the style 
of your Editorials, & the general conduct of the journal, the 
more I am inclined to like it. The literary criticisms are un- 
usually thoughtful & just; in fine, your paper is an excellent 
one, and I hope it may succeed. I d'ont [sic] tell you to be 
sanguine about success however. Long, & melancholy acquaint- 
ances with the temper of the So. peoples has [p. 2] caused me 
to lose all confidence in their grand professions. I do not believe 
in them, or in their promises. For 7 years I have worked My 
Dear Sir, in one field, or another, striving to do all that one 
man could, to advance Literature, & the Literary spirit among 
our People. What has been my reward? In no egotistical, & em- 
bittered temper, I may declare that I have encountered what to 
every man of feeling, and courage is infinitely worse than the 
most savage oppositione [sic] — i. e. systematic neglect, & that 
terrible species of coldness which embodies itself in quiet sneers, 
& the taunts of the worldling who despises all efforts which 
bring not an immediate return in hard cash ! 

Of course it is absurd to complain. This unlucky indifference 
can be easily explained on clear philosophical grounds. At the 
same time the So. literary man must necessarily feel that he 
occupies a wrong position ! 

My stories have been very correctly published. The last of 
them "One too Many" is by no means a favorite of mine. It is 
too extravagant, and melodramatic, & if I ever republish it in a 
vol., it shall be materially modified. 

Enclosed, you will find an Original Sonnet, which is at your 
disposal — , a sort of prose-poem or Extravaganza "Within the 
Veil" from the April Russell, which has proved so popular, 
(altho not pretending to a spark of originality in conception, 

9 The volume, Poems (Boston, Ticknor and Fields), bears the date 1855. 

96 The North Carolina Historical Review 

whatever the execution may be — ) that perhaps you may like 
to introduce it to the readers of the "Leisure Hour." I was much 
annoyed to discover yesterday that Russell's clerk had neglected 
my instructions with regard to the Magazine; but after this, 
you may depend upon receiving it. I shall mail you this afternoon 
the Jan, Feb, & April nos., & when I can procure a copy — the 
March no. shall be sent also — Pray let me have hereafter 2 
copies of Every issue of the [p. 4] Leisure Hour; instead of 
directing them to this magazine direct them to me personally. 

It will afford me pleasure to hear from you at any, & all 
times; therefore write whenever you feel disposed — . 

In haste, — but Truly yrs. 
Paul H. Hayne 

P. S. Enclosed, (Instead of enclosing this Editorial which, I 
find increases the bulk of my letter unduly, I refer you to the 
Editor's Table in "Russell" for May), you will also find an 
article, extracted from my Editor's Table, [the analysis I mean 
of Everett's mode of Oratory, & style as an author 10 ] which 
you can make use of, if it so pleases you — . This critique — (if 
I may dignify it by so big a word) has attracted considerable 
attention in Charleston. Let me know of the reception of this 
letter, and the accompanying periodicals, & thereby oblige 

Yrs. P.H.H. 11 

Kingsbury did choose to introduce "Within The Veil" to 
the readers of The Leisure Hour; and in the May 20, 1858 
number, he republished it under Hayne's name. The tale 
had appeared anonymously in Russell's. Hayne deliberately 
tried to keep from his reading public the fact that he had 
published the tale 12 — at least until it had "proved so popular." 

Kingsbury did not review the "more juvenile book of 
verse" Hayne promised to send to him; but in the May 27, 
1858 number of The Leisure Hour, he did publish a critical 
notice of Hayne's 1857 volume, Sonnets, and Other Poems, 
which was published in Charleston by Harper and Calvo. 
Kingsbury wrote: "Among those who are struggling with 
zeal, ability, and success in the cause of Southern letters is 

10 Russell's Magazine, III (May, 1858), 181-183. 

11 P. H. Hayne to T. B. Kingsbury, Charleston, S. C, May 4, 1858. This 
letter and the other letters published in this article are published with 
the permission of the director of the Southern Historical Collection of 
the University of North Carolina. 

13 See note preceding "Within The Veil," Russell's Magazine, III (April, 
1858), 70. 

Hayne to Kingsbury 97 

Paul H. Hayne; perhaps the most successful woer of the 
Muses that we can lay claim to." 13 Kingsbury declared that 
only John H. Boner among Americans was a better writer 
of sonnets than Hayne. Hayne "like a skillful workman, 
first found out what he was able to do, and then went to 
work to accomplish in the best way possible the duties which 
lay before him." 14 Hayne had discussed the sonnet in the 
preface to Sonnets, and Other Poems. He maintained that 
"for the expression of a single cardinal thought— its elabora- 
tion and 'flower-like unfolding— leaf by leaf,'— human in- 
genuity could not have invented a system more beautiful and 
effective. ... A successful Sonnet is among the most unique 
of imaginative creations." 15 

In the months that followed, Kingsbury published several 
of Hayne's poems in The Leisure Hour, and there is no 
reason to suppose that their correspondence did not con- 
tinue. The next letter that has been preserved, however, is 
dated January 25, 1859. This letter, like the earlier letter 
printed above, gives us an intimate account of the trials, 
tribulations, and literary heartaches of editor Hayne. 

Charleston Jan 25th 1859 
My Dear Sir ; 

I have just reed, the last number of the "Leisure Hour," con- 
taining your discriminating & able notice of the poems of Mr. 
Grayson. 16 I cannot tell you how truly grateful I am at the ap- 
pearance of such an article. Mr. Grayson, besides that he is one 
of my dearest personal friends, belongs to that rare class of men 
of talent, who, (altho perfectly self-respecting), are so shy & 
modest, that it takes a good deal to bring them fairly out. His 
poems, so far, have not reed, the attention at the South which 
they deserve. Yours, is one of the few comprehensive critiques 

13 The Leisure Hour (Oxford, N. C), May 27, 1858. 

14 The Leisure Hour (Oxford, N. C), May 27, 1858. 

15 Paul H. Hayne, Sonnets, and Other Poems (Charleston: Harper and 
Calvo, 1857), vi. 

16 "Critical: A Southern Poet," The Leisure Hour (Oxford, N. C), Janu- 
ary 20, 1859. This was the first installment. Kingsbury continued the 
article on Grayson in the next issue of The Leisure Hour, January 27, 1859. 
Kingsbury declares that "the versification of Mr. Grayson, is frequently 
vigorous and impressive, and is almost invariably melliflous and graceful, 
whilst the currents of his thought run deep and clear." The Grayson re- 
ferred to was William John Grayson, a South Carolina planter who wrote 
poetry for a diversion. His most serious effort was "Chicora" written in 
1856, (Library of Southern Literature), volume V, 2012-2013. In the Janu- 
ary 20, 1859, installment Hayne is again praised. 

98 The North Carolina Historical Review 

upon them that I have seen. Really, the "Leisure Hour" is doing 
a good, & noble work. If a journal, so admirable is every respect, 
is not sustained by the N Carolinians, it will be but little to their 
credit. If I know myself, this hearty, spontaneous commendation 
proceeds from [p. 2] no selfish source. You have worked gal- 
lantly for the South, & the South, as Dr. Ollapod, hath it, "owes 
you one!" Apropos of Grayson, let me tell you (in the strictest 
confidence), that the poem termed "Marion" which is now in 
the course of publication in "Russell," is from his pen. 17 I think 
you will agree with me that it is a most spirited performance, 
& likely to increase the author's reputation greatly. Indeed, parts 
of this poem are almost worthy of Sir Walter Scott ! 

Do you ever see among your Exchanges a paper published at 
N. Orleans, called the "True Delta"? If so, please glance at the 
last no. but one, & read the attack upon Simms, Russell's Maga- 
zine, & one of the unlucky Editors of the latter, viz — myself. The 
editorial I refer to, is in reply to a few strictures of mine upon 
some remarks in that journal a month or two ago. 18 Now, if the 
article meets your eye, [p. 3] pray tell me if anything more 
provokingly absurd was ever published in a newspaper ! Lest you 
should not see it, permit me to give an abstract of the same. 
The N. 0. True Delta, referring to Dana's "Household Book of 
Poetry," said that a ridiculous "clamour" had been raised on 
account of the ommission of Simms' name ; 19 & went on to criti- 
cise his poetry in most insulting and puerile style. To this I re- 
plied by citing against the Editor of the Delta, such authorities 

17 The long poem "Marion" appeared in Russell's in four installment — IV 
(December 1858), 212-218; IV (January 1859), 313-321; IV (February 
1859), 406-414; and IV (March 1859), 505-507. Hayne gives no hint as to 
why such secrecy should be maintained. The poem, it seems, as a con- 
sequence of this secrecy, was ascribed to Simms. Guy Adams Cardwell, Jr., 
"Charleston Periodicals, 1795-1860: A Study in Literary Influences, with a 
Descriptive Check List of Seventy-Five Magazines" (unpublished Ph.D. 
dissertation, the University of North Carolina Library) says that the 
W. C. Courtney set of Russell's in the Duke University Library, John 
Russell's personal set in the New York Public Library, and the F. A. 
Porcher set in the College of Charleston Library all ascribe the poem 
to Simms. 

M The following remarks appeared in Hayne's "Editor's Table," Russell's 
Magazine, IV (January 1859), 373: "The New Orlean's True Delta, refer- 
ring to what the editorial critic of that journal is pleased to call the 
'clamor' raised at the south, about the omission of Mr. Simms' name in 
Dana's 'Household Book of Poetry,' says, there is, really, no just cause of 
complaint, at least, in this particular instance, because to quote the critics 
own language : 'Mr. Simms is not a poet, for he lacks the essential elements 
of the poet — imagination. He has the wish but not the wings to soar. He is 
simply a tolerable verse-weaver; but he weaves with ordinary shuttle. His 
is not the golden-threaded shuttle that flashes to and fro in the loom of 
thought.' " 

18 Hayne reviewed — if indeed this be the right term — Dana's Household 
Book of Poetry in Russell's Magazine, IV (January 1859), 348-353. Hayne 
decried the "entire silence preserved with regard to most of the poets of 
the southern States." As regards Simms, Hayne wrote: "In regard to Mr. 

Hayne to Kingsbury 99 

as Whipple, Poe, Griswold, & Thos Campbell. And how did the 
fellow rebut this testimony ; ? Why, by saying that Thos. Camp- 
bell must have been idiotic when he praised Simms, that Poe 
must have been drunk ; & that as for Messrs Whipple, Griswold, 
& Duyckink [sic] "their testimony went for little." 20 Did you 
ever hear of such Cockney impudence ? — But eno' of this matter ! 
Please My Dear Sir, let [me] hear from you as often as pos- 
sible, & Believe me 

Ever Truly P H Hayne 21 

Two days after Hayne's letter was written, Kingsbury's 
"valedictory," so he entitled it, appeared in The Leisure 

With this number my editorial connection with the Leisure 
Hour will terminate. The reason which has induced this course 
of action it is unnecessary to state. . . . But the Leisure Hour 
has not become a popular paper, nor have I expected it, owing 
to certain causes which I refrain from giving. I here lay down 
my Editorial pen, and the probability is, forever. . . , 22 

Kingsbury's reason "which . . . induced this course of 
action" was that he was planning to study for the ministry, 
and told Hayne of his purpose. Hayne answered quickly in 
an intimate letter in which he laid bare his own bosom. 

Charleston Feb 3rd 1859 
My Dear Mr. Kingsbury; — I perceive with sincere regret that 
you have abandoned the Editorship of the "Leisure Hour." I 
cannot say that the intelligence surprises me, because I very 
well knew that the Journal — , conducted as you have conducted 

Simms, many words are not necessary. He is the first living writer of the 
south; known not only here, but in the whole country, and abroad, 
wherever American literature is known at all. With high heart, he has 
maintained at all times, and in all places, the honor of his native land; 
he has conferred honour by his genius on the whole country. His fame rests 
on solid foundations of real and indisputable merit, and time can but 
make it more bright." 

20 In Russell's Magazine, IV (February 1859), 474, Hayne wrote: "The 
editor of the True Delta, in reply, makes a direct personal attack upon one 
of the editors of this Magazine; displays supreme incapacity of compre- 
hending even the most ordinary forms of poetical expression, and disposes 
of the critical authorities above-mentioned after this manner: 'If Campbell 
spoke favourable of Simms, it must have been in his dotage; (Campbell 
was editor of the New Monthly at the time, and about thirty-three years of 
age; if Poe was pleased with Simms' poetry, it must have been when he 
was overcome with drink; as to Whipple, Duyckinck and Griswold, their 
opinions are of little importance.' " 

21 P. H. Hayne to T. B. Kingsbury, Charleston, S. C, January 25, 1859, 
in The Southern Historical Collection of the University of North Carolina. 

23 The Leisure Hour (Oxford, N. C), January 27, 1859. 

100 The North Carolina Historical Review 

it — , could not be popular ; therefore could not pay, & therefore 
(lastly), must sooner or later be given up by one not rich 
enough to be independent of its pecuniary support. "The Leisure 
Hour" was & is too intellectual, too critical, too thoughtful to 
meet the approbation of the unintellectual, uncritical, unthink- 
ing people. Perhaps you think me disposed to flatter. Well, my 
dear Sir, I may be, I must by necessity be, partial to a paper 
which has during the 14 or 15 months of my acquaintance with 
it [ ] 23 than I ever expect to receive again from any 

intelligent source in the whole course of my future life! 

I wish, (let me frankly say it!) I wish I could believe all you 
have so generously spoke in my behalf! But my own mind, my 
self-knowledge tells me that I have weaknesses (in an artistic, & 
I fear, moral sense) , which will, probably, interfere fatally with 
my success as a poet. With humiliation I confess to one whose 
great kindness has opened by confidence, & really won my heart, 
that the same awful infirmity of will, which I have commented 
upon in the essay on Hartley Coleridge, is forever besetting me, 
& overturning, or defeating in some manner, my cherished 
plans. 24 You call me, others have called me, a successful Sonnet- 
teer: Why am I successful in this special sort of versification. 
Oh! Sir! it is [p. 3] because I have not the persistent strength 
of wing, or of will, to venture boldly upon more sustained 
flights!, because I lack as Hartley Coleridge lacked, "a great 
central purpose in art." You will not think me vilely egotistical, 
because I write in this curious strain. Altho it has never been 
my fortune to look upon you "according to the flesh," I feel that 
you are truly a friend, and as a friend I address you! But eno' 
of this! 

"The Leisure Hour," is, I see, to be continued. Who 

succeeds you as Editor? No name is mentioned anywhere. 

I hope you will sometimes continue your contributions. Do 
not devote yourself too exclusively to theological studies, but 
keep up the belle lettres tastes you now possess. They will do 
you good service in the Pulpit. Our So. preachers are wretchedly 
deficient (generally) in literary attainments, yet surely, they 
should be scholars; not merely Hebrew scholars and skilled 
in polemics, but thorough English scholars, versed in our poetry 
as well as philosophy. 

23 The letter is soiled here and the writing is not legible. 

24 In his essay entitled "David Hartley Coleridge," Russell's Magazine, 
IV (February 1859), 433-442, Hayne wrote: "We have said that Hartley's 
poems were occasional. He was not gifted with the resolution, the consist- 
ent earnestness, or the wide grasp of thought and invention, which are 
the essential endowments of the epic, or dramatic poet. He lacked a great 
central purpose in art, precisely as he lacked a great central purpose in 

Hayne to Kingsbury 101 

Pardon this letter, which I feel to be rather an eccentric, & 
perhaps a too familiar epistle. 
Answer quickly, & Believe me, 

Ever truly yrs. 

Paul H Hayne 25 

One wonders if Kingsbury answered quickly and, if so, 
how long this interesting correspondence between these two 
lovers of literature continued. Kingsbury never ceased to 
appreciate Hayne's poetry; and eight years later when Kings- 
bury was once again editor of a literary newspaper, the 
Warrenton, North Carolina, Indicator, Devoted to Literature, 
Religion, Agriculture, and General Intelligence, he published 
a poem by Hayne. Since there is nothing to indicate that it 
was copied from some other source, it may have been writ- 
ten by Hayne for The Indicator. The poem also does not ap- 
pear in the Poems of Paul Hamilton Hayne (complete edi- 
tion; Boston: Lothrop and Co., 1882) and is here, perhaps, 
reprinted for the first time. 


My wedded love is fast asleep, 

The white lids closed o'er marvellous eyes, 

That shine a meaning, pure and deep, 

As midnight's far, unf athomed skies. 

Her heart upon the tide of dreams 

Is heaving like a fairy boat, 

And o'er her face the mystic gleams 

Of tender thoughts and memories float. 

My earlier love, I could not wed, 

Is slumbering too, but far away — 

She sleeps among the tranquil dead, 

And couched upon the churchyard clay ; 

Her lids are closed o'er soulless eyes, 

Her pulseless heart is mute and cold — 

But thought is busy where she lies, 

And memory wakes beneath the mould. 26 

No matter when the correspondence actually ended, one 
may be sure that Kingsbury cherished the memory of it as 
long as he lived. 

25 P. H. Hayne to T. B. Kingsbury, Charleston, S. C, February 3, 1859, 
in the Southern Historical Collection, University of North Carolina. 
20 The Indicator (Warrenton, N. C), December 11, 1867. 


Edited By Hugh Talmage Lefler 

The following unsigned two-page communication to The 
Moderate Intelligencer, to which no reference is made in 
the Colonial Records of North Carolina, and which, so far 
as is known, has never been reprinted, is one of the few doc- 
uments relating to North Carolina between the grant by 
Charles I to his Attorney-General, Robert Heath, in 1629 
and the more effective grant by Charles II to the eight 
Lords Proprietors in 1663. 

The Moderate Intelligencer, one of the most important 
mid-seventeenth century papers, was a weekly news sheet 
published in London from June 5, 1649, to February 23, 1654 
—a very long life for a periodical in that day. Its founder, 
owner, and editor, John Dillingham of Whitefriars, was a 
very controversial figure. A tailor turned publisher, he was 
involved in many disputes with other journalists and with 
political and religious leaders. He gave information against 
Archbishop Laud in 1643, and Dr. Brownrigg was committed 
to Dillingham's house in 1644. Gilbert Mabbott, a rival 
journalist, attempted to appropriate the title of his paper, 
but the House of Lords decided that "Dillingham alone was 
entitled to the title of The Moderate Intelligencer." Some 
contempories praised Dillingham's writing and were quite 
enthusiastic about his idea of a journal in French for the 
benefit of foreigners in England. One writer referred to him 
as "the Countryman's Chronicler . . . the citizens' harbinger 
. . . and the epitome of wit . . . and though he tells lies by the 
gross, yet he would have the book-turners of this isle believe 
that he useth moderation." Other critics were less compli- 
mentary; one referred to Dillingham as "a Prick louse vermin 
Taylor"; another condemned "that botching and Moderate 
Intelligencer," edited by that "learned Scout." 

The following interesting and detailed account of "Caro- 
lana" may have been a bona fide communication to Dilling- 
ham's paper, or it may have been the product of his own 


A Description of "Carolina" 103 

fertile imagination. But it is significant that in 1649, at the 
time when Oliver Cromwell as Lieutenant General was pre- 
paring for his Irish campaign, plans were under way to ap- 
point a governor for the Albemarle Sound region, then con- 
sidered a part of Virginia despite the Heath patent of 1629. 
The editor has been unable to discover the identity of either 
the "well-wilier" or the "Gentleman going over Governour 
into Carolana." 




(From Thursday, April 26 to Wednesday, May 2, 1649.) 

At the intreaty of a well-wilier, the following lines are in- 

There is A Gentleman going over Governour into Carolana in 
America, and many Gentlemen of quality and their families with 

This place is of a temperate Climate, not so hot as Barbado's 
nor so cold as Virgina; the Winter much lake our March here 
in England. The Northern latitude begins where Virgina ends, at 
37, neer Cape Henry, and takes in six degrees Southerly; no 
bounds to the East and West, but the Seas. At Point Comfort, 
neer Cape Henry, you enter into a fair Navigable River, called 
James River, about two leagues over : on both sides that River, 
are the chiefe Plantations in Virginia, and their chief Town 
James Town. On the South side of this River, are two Rivers, 
Elisabeth, and Nansamond, which convey you into Carolana; 
so that this River is in a haven to both Colonies. This Carolana, 
besides the temperature of the Climate, hath many Native Com- 
modities to feed and cloath the body : Deer in abundance, bigger 
and better meat then ours in England, having two young ones 
at a time; their skins good cloathing, being better dressed by 
the Indians then ours: Elkes of a large size, admirable meat, 
having three young at a time; their Hides make good Buffe; 
besides Hares and Conies, and many other that are good meat: 
Beasts of prey, that are profitable for their Furres, as Bevers, 
Otters, Foxes, Martins, Minches, and Musk-Cats, their Cods 
better sented then those of East-India, and more lasting : Fowle 
of all sorts, Partridges and wild Turkies 100 in a flock, some 
of the Turkies weighing 40 pounds, Fish there are in great 
abundance, of all sorts. In the Woods are sundry kinds of Fruits, 
as Strawberries, Raspices, Gooseberries, Plums, and Cherries; 
three several kinds of Grapes, large, and of a delicious taste. In 

104 The North Carolina Historical Review 

these woods are herbes and flowers of fragrant smels, many- 
kinds of singing Birds, which have varieties of sweet Notes. 
Though this Countrey be for the most part woody, but where 
the Indians have cleared, for their Corne and Tobacco, or where 
fresh marshes and medows are, yet they are pleasant and profit- 
able; pleasant, in respect of the stately growth and distance of 
the Trees one from the other, that you may travail and see a 
Deere at a great distance ; profitable, being of divers kinds, both 
for shipping, Pot-ashes, Mulberry trees for Silk-wormes, Wal- 
nut trees, and stately Cedars; so that when of necessity you 
must cut down for Building and other uses, you are recompenced 
for your labour. You have also many pleasant Ascents, Hills 
and Valleys, Springs of wholesome waters, Rivers, and Rivo- 
lets. Now you see you are plentifully fed and cloathed with the 
naturall Commodities of the Country, which fall into your hands 
without labour or toyle, for in the obtaining of them you have a 
delightful recreation. Now fearing you should out of this abund- 
ance, in the excesse take a Surfer, you have many Physical 
herbs and Drugs, Allom, Nitrum, Terra Sigillata, Tarre, Rosin, 
Turpentine, Oyle of Olives, Oyle of Walnuts, and other Berries ; 
Honey from wild Bees, Sugar-Canes, Mulberries, divers sorts 
of Gums and Dyes, which the Indians use for paint. Within the 
ground, Mines of Copper, Lead, Tinne, Pearle, and Emroydes. 
Having the profit and pleasure of the natural Commodities, you 
shall see what Art and Industry may produce. The Soyle is for 
the most part of a black mould about two foot deepe, you may 
trust it with anything. The Indian Corne yeelds 200 for one, 
they have two Crops in six moneths; English Wheat, Barley, 
and Pease, yeeld 30 for one; Hempe, Flax, Rice, and Rape-feed 
have a large encrease: What English Fruits are planted there, 
improve in quantity and quality. Besides all this is said, we 
shall shake hands with Virginia, a flourishing Plantation, which 
is not onely able to strengthen and assist us, but furnish us 
with English Provision, Cowes and Oxen, Horse, and Mares, 
Sheepe and Hogs, which they abound in now, which they and 
other Plantations were enforced to bring out of other Countries 
with great difficulty and charge, these are ready to our hands. 

// this that hath been said give incouragement to any, let 
them repair to Mr. Edmond Thorowgood, A Virginia Merchant, 
living in White-Crosse-Street, at the house that was Justice 
Fosters. He will informe you of the Governour, from whom you 
will understand when and how to prepare themselves (not ex- 
ceed August) and what conditions shall be given to Adven- 
turers, Planters, and Servants; which shall be as good, if not 
better, then have been given to other Plantations. 

Plantations in America were first famous in King James his 
time, the arguments to draw people over were the bringing 

A Description of "Carolana' 


the Gospel to the Indians, inriching men that went and ad- 
ventured, and extending Dominion, the fruit whereof is visible, 
in King Charles his time, the persecution of men diffring in 
opinion revived this undertaking, and thousands went to New 
England whose condition is also known, now their seems to be 
great designes of this nature which arise out of the discotents 
at the present state of affairs, alterations, & the wants which 
the late War hath brought many unto, for which there seems 
no blame. For censent be advised to make no use of the Merchant 
farther than transportation, part with nothing, if an adven- 
turer, but what you are willing to loose to accomodate your 
friend, lay no foundation of a Plantation for your perticular 
before you go, when you begin to disburst, resolve to go, leave 
more or lesse behind you in England that may supply the first 
necessities, which will be greatest, and thus much be sure, if 
the Countrey be healthful to English, its seated as well as any 
upon which the English are, if not better. 


The Carolina Charter of 1663. By William Stevens Powell. 
(Raleigh: The State Department of Archives and History. 
1954. Pp. vi, 79. Illus. and bibliography. Cloth $2.00, paper 

The full title of this book is The Carolina Charter of 1663, 
How it came to North Carolina and Its Place in History with 
Biographical Sketches of the Proprietors. The complete text 
of the charter as reproduced occupies only 15 pages but 
this is the feature of the volume. To add to its value and 
interest, however, the author has preceded the actual text 
with two chapters. 

One of these chapters traces in considerable detail the 
steps taken by the director of the Department of Archives 
and History of North Carolina to establish the authenticity 
and provenance of the document and to ascertain whether 
the London bookseller (who had discovered the Charter in 
1947 ) could offer a clear title to it once the purchase price of 
$6,000 was raised. A number of scholars and authorities 
examined the charter. Their reports and correspondence 
reproduced here in full make interesting reading. 

The second chapter, "Origin of the Charter," is an in- 
formative account of various grants of land made by British 
sovereigns prior to 1663, which included the territory later 
embraced by the Charter. First of these was a grant by 
Queen Elizabeth, June 1578, to Sir Humphrey Gilbert and 
renewed in the name of his half brother, Sir Walter Raleigh, 
in 1584. Raleigh financed several unsuccessful expeditions, 
among them the famous "Lost Colony/' In 1606 a charter 
was granted to the Virginia Company of London which in- 
cluded a part of what is now North Carolina. This charter 
was revoked in 1624 and the colony came into the hands of 
the Crown. In 1629 the King conveyed title to his attorney 
general, Sir Robert Heath, but he made no organized at- 
tempt to establish a settlement. In 1648, however, several 
Virginians purchased from the Indians large tracts of land, 
covered by the grant to Heath, along the Chowan River. A 


Book Reviews 


settlement was made here in 1653 and a steady stream of 
colonists followed. 

This activity apparently attracted the attention of some 
Englishmen who were supporters of Charles II, and after 
he came to the throne he granted the territory between 31° 
and 36° north latitude "from sea to sea" to the following 
proprietors: Edward Hyde, Earl of Clarendon, Lord High 
Chancellor of England; George Monck, Duke of Albemarle, 
Master of the King's Horse and Captain-General of all his 
forces; William Lord Craven, an old friend of Charles II's 
father who had zealously and ably supported the royal 
family; John Lord Berkeley, who had defended the Crown 
in the rebellion and joined the royal family in exile; Anthony 
Ashley Cooper, Chancellor of the Exchequer and afterward 
the Earl of Shaftesbury; Sir George Carteret, Vice-Chamber- 
lain of the King's household; Sir William Berkeley, Governor 
of Virginia, who induced the colony to be loyal to Charles II 
as their sovereign even while he was in exile; and Sir John 
Colleton, who had upheld the royal cause in Barbados. 

It did not take long for these royal proprietors to discover 
that the "richest jewel of their new domain of Carolina" was 
not in their domain at all. Settlements already made in the 
Albemarle region lay for the most part a few miles north 
of the line marking the limit of the territory granted to them. 
So in 1665 they secured a new charter extending the limits 
one-half degree to the north and two degrees to the south. 

Plan followed plan for a scheme of government. Finally, 
one was approved. This was the Fundamental Consti- 
tutions drawn up for Carolina by John Locke under the 
direction of the Earl of Shaftesbury and adopted by the 
proprietors on July 21, 1669 

The Fundamental Constitutions were designed to serve a 
landed aristocracy and set forth many orders of rank and 
privilege which were impractical, to say the least, and were 
probably responsible for their eventual failure. But even with 
these limitations they gave the Englishmen in Carolina very 
broad rights and freedoms. They provided an adequate sys- 
tem of local courts with a guarantee of trial by jury; the Eng- 
lish system of town government and the right to elect repre- 

108 The North Carolina Historical Review 

sentatives to meet every two years. Provision was made for 
registration of births, marriages, and deaths and for recording 
land titles. Many of these provisions were so liberal that in 
England they were considered to be radical. In Carolina, 
however, they provided nothing more than was expected by 
the pioneers who risked their lives to settle the wilderness. 
But the proprietary rule, set up under the Constitution, was 
unsuccessful and the colony was taken back by the Crown 
in 1728. 

The other feature of the book is the section containing 
brief biographical sketches of the proprietors with a full 
page portrait of all save one of whom no portrait is known. 
The book is well printed on good stock. It is an interesting 
and scholarly work. As such it will be a valuable addition to 
any library. 

William D. Overman. 
Firestone Tire and Rubber Co., 
Akron, Ohio. 

The County Court in North Carolina before 1750. By Paul M. 
McCain. (Historical Papers of the Trinity College Historical 
Society, Series XXXI. Durham: The Duke University Press, 
1954. Pp. viii, 263. $2.50.) 

The county court was the principal institution of local 
government in North Carolina for almost two hundred years 
before the adoption of the state constitution of 1868. Pro- 
vision for a court in each precinct of the colony was made 
in the Fundamental Constitutions of 1669. Within a short 
time courts were established in the precincts of Albemarle 
County and later in those of Bath County. Following the 
abolition of these two counties in 1738-1739, the precincts 
became counties. The precinct court was known thereafter 
as the county court. 

In this scholarly volume Dr. McCain traces the develop- 
ment of the county court from its beginnings under the 
proprietors as a precinct court down to the middle of the 
eighteenth century, when its organization and powers had 
become fixed and stable. Originally the court was established 
to relieve the general court, composed of the governor and 

Book Reviews 


council, from trying petty civil cases and probating routine 
records. As the colony developed, the authority of the court 
was expanded until this agency became the chief adminis- 
trative body of the county as well as its court of justice. 

Dr. McCain has presented a clear picture of the operation 
of the county court before 1750. Four excellent chapters are 
devoted to the jurisdiction of the court. Specific cases and 
incidents have been used effectively in illustrating the au- 
thority exercised by the justices in criminal and civil actions, 
probate proceedings, supervision of orphans, and in the reg- 
ulation of involuntary servitude and slavery. The powers of 
the court in matters concerning public buildings, county 
finance, supervision of roads, and the regulation of business 
have been carefully described in four additional chapters. 

From the power and authority which the court exercised 
in the affairs of the people of North Carolina before 1750, 
Dr. McCain concludes that the court gave to the inhabitants 
of the colony an institution of local government adapted to 
their needs. 

Serious students of history will be pleased with this well- 
organized and readable account of an important segment of 
the early history of North Carolina. 

Rex Beach. 
Hall of Records Commission, 
Annapolis, Maryland. 

A History of Catawba County. Compiled and published by Ca- 
tawba County Historical Association, Inc. Edited by Charles J. 
Preslar, Jr. (Salisbury: Rowan Printing Company. 1954. Pp. 
526. $5.00.) 

Eighteen years ago residents of Catawba County in the 
upper Piedmont section of North Carolina organized a his- 
torical association and began collecting materials from which 
a history of the county could be written. A publication com- 
mittee, headed by Dr. J. E. Hodges, president of the asso- 
ciation, has now published in a sizeable volume the first 
general history of the county. 

Catawba was not formed until 1842, when Nathaniel Wil- 
son captured John Killian's seat in the House of Commons 

110 The North Carolina Historical Review 

and put through a bill to divide Lincoln County. The au- 
thors, however, appropriately began with the coming in 1749 
of German and Scotch-Irish settlers to the area. The story 
of the pioneers, the majority of whom were Germans, is ade- 
quately told. Heinrich Weidner's (Whitener) experiences 
during the French and Indian War form the most exciting 
of the individual narratives. 

The writers attempted to include every phase of Catawba's 
history and current state of development. Accordingly, there 
are, in addition to the usual political and military discussions, 
sections on religion, education, transportation, trades, pro- 
fessions, newspapers, post offices, manners, and health re- 
sorts. Accounts are given, for instance, of the building in the 
1850's of the Western North Carolina Railroad, which helped 
transform Hickory Tavern into an industrial center, and of 
social life at Sparkling Springs, an almost forgotten resort 
center. Even with two railroads (the Chester and Lenoir 
arrived in 1881), the manufacture of furniture, hosiery, and 
textiles, which is now the principal activity in the county, 
amounted to little before 1900. Predominantly agricultural 
until recent years, Catawba now annually produces manu- 
factured goods valued at $100,000,000, which contrasts 
sharply with farm products worth $6,000,000. The descrip- 
tion of the destructive 1916 Catawba valley flood will con- 
vince the reader of the value of the present series of dams 
on the Catawba as flood control measures, as well as for the 
production of electricity for the region's industry. 

An average county history in over-all merit, this book has, 
nevertheless, many shortcomings. The literary style is un- 
impressive and the long lists of names make tedious reading. 
At times the short unrelated paragraphs do not form con- 
nected narratives. There are no footnotes and little documen- 
tation in the text. The general tone is excessively laudatory. 
Some factual and typographical errors escaped the proof- 
readers. To illustrate, the following inaccurate sentence is 
not explained: "It was not, in fact, until 1798 that the first 
English school was opened in North Carolina" (p. 122). 
Johnston Blakely is presented as two persons. John Bell, the 
1860 candidate, is referred to as "Whig John Belle." A blank- 

Book Reviews 


et statement that the Confederate soldier "was not allowed 
to return home after the cessation of hositilities, as he was 
detained as a prisoner" (p. 283), illustrates the guesswork 
in which the writers sometimes engaged. 

The faults of this book will detract from the pleasure of 
reading it, but will not prevent the judicious reader from 
tracing through its pages the development of a progressive 
North Carolina county. Several pages of drawings by Philip 
Moose add variety to the volume. A short bibliography and 
an acceptable index are included. 

Henry S. S troupe. 
Wake Forest College, 
Wake Forest. 

The Presbyterian Congregation on Rocky River. By Thomas 
Hugh Spence, Jr. (Concord, North Carolina: Rocky River 
Presbyterian Church. 1954. Pp. xiv, 293. $3.25) 

The present history of the Presbyterian Congregation on 
Rocky River is written by Thomas Hugh Spence, Jr., and 
dedicated to the memory of his father, Thomas Hugh Spence, 
pastor of the Rocky River Church from 1916 to 1931. It 
covers the entire period from the time of the arrival of John 
Rodgers, the first settler, according to tradition, in the Rocky 
River Community, in 1732, to the service of formal recog- 
nition of the gift of the Education Building on September 6, 
1953. Of especial, general historical interest is the account 
which Mr. Spence gives of the beginnings of the Presbyterian 
settlement along Rocky River, stemming out of the migration 
of the Scotch-Irish from the middle Colonies, especially 
Pennsylvania and Virginia, to the Rocky River area where 
land was cheaper than it was in Pennsylvania and, more im- 
portant, where there was no intereference by civil authori- 
ties in the Presbyterian form of worship such as there had 
been in Virginia, where the Established Church (Anglican) 
was dominant to a much larger extent than it was in the in- 
land regions of North Carolina. 

A large part of the more general appeal of the story which 
is recounted here arises from the extent to which the Rocky 
River Congregation— clergy and laymen— have been caught 

112 The North Carolina Historical Review 

up in the movement of events beyond their confines and the 
extent to which its members have participated in these 
events— in war, in African missions, in civil affairs, and in 

While those who are associated with the Rocky River 
Presbyterian Church will have a special interest in this vol- 
ume, it will also appeal to others who, in one connection or 
another, have come to know the pastors and lay leaders of 
this congregation. The biographical material comprises a 
large portion of the book; it is full of accounts of people 
whose lives were rich, self-giving, and ennobling. 

A lengthy appendix includes lists of the pastors, elders, 
deacons and other officials of Rocky River, together with 
statistical reports and lists of the "Patriots and Soldiers of 
the Revolutionary Period" and "Confederate Casualties." A 
detailed bibliography is included. 

E. Clinton Gardner. 
North Carolina State College, 

King's Mountain and Its Heroes: History of the Battle of 
King's Mountain, October 7th, 1780, and the Events Which 
Led to it. By Lyman C. Draper, LL.D., with steel portraits, 
maps, and plans. (Cincinnati, Peter G. Thomson. 1881. Con- 
tinental Book Company, Marietta, Georgia, 1954. Pp. xv, 
612. $10.00.) 

The republication of this book for the second time in the 
three quarters of a century since its original publication 
should be a distinct encouragement to all those whose 
writings are poorly received but who firmly believe that they 
are writing for eternity. It is perhaps an evidence that his- 
tory does not have to be rewritten by each generation. When 
old Dr. Ramsey, the Tennessee historian and the prime mover 
in inducing the dilatory Lyman Draper to write this— his 
only book— saw the product, he predicted that it would be 
popular for a century. It was not, to Dr. Draper's great dis- 
appointment, popular at the moment. Its sales fell far below 
his ambitious dreams, and the immediate reception was not 
good. It came a year late for the centennial celebration of the 
King's Mountain battle and competed with the flood of 

Book Reviews 

memoirs and battle material relating to the Civil War, which 
was then pouring from the presses. Nevertheless, it has stood 
the test of time well, and in recent years even the first reprint- 
ing some decades ago has been selling as a collectors' item 
for about twenty-five dollars. The re-issue in lithoprint by 
the Continental Book Company is a real service to historians, 
genealogists, and antiquarians. 

The book is a dramatic account of the British in the Caro- 
linas, of the confusion in the upcountry where neighborhoods 
and even families were divided between royal syncophants 
and high-minded patriots. Finally, as Cornwallis, Tarleton, 
and Ferguson terrorized the land, a cry for aid went over 
the mountains to the men of the Watauga, the Nollichucky, 
and the fastnesses of the West. Then under Selby, Camp- 
bell, Cleveland, Chronicle, and John Sevier, the mountain 
clans gathered, crossed over the Yellow Mountains, and on 
October 8, 1780, stormed the heights of King's Mountain, 
killed Ferguson and many another leader of the Redcoats, 
captured 600 foul Tories, saved Carolina, and prepared the 
way for the final surrender of the dastard Cornwallis at York- 
town. It is a dramatic tale, filled with anecdotes of Whig 
derring-do and the bestial deeds of the Tory hordes. 

In addition, the book is a veritable encyclopedia for gen- 
ealogists and antiquarians. Names, ancestry, deeds, and de- 
scendants of scores are carefully, even reverently, recorded; 
and whole chapters give biographies of Shelby, Sevier, Cleve- 
land, Winston, and others. Appended, too, is the diary of 
British Lieutenant Allaire, letters of General Gates, Wash- 
ington's congratulatory order, and Lafayette's comments. 
And the documents in the virulent controversy, which the 
Selbys raised, over William Campbell's conduct in the battle 
are here presented— and the conflict resolved by Draper 
in a complete vindication of Campbell. It is, withal, a yarn 
filled with specific, circumstantial accounts. When the New 
York Times reviewed it in 1881, the reviewer remarked that 
it was exactly such an account as the paper would wish from 
its correspondent on the scene. 

It might well, too, serve as a model for modern battle ac- 
counts—cluttered as they are with polysyllabic incantations 

114 The North Carolina Historical Review 

about strategy, logistics, and command systems. Amid this 
mystifying folderol, a clear, balanced, sane, and circumstan- 
tial account would be a blessing. Lyman Draper had no 
knowledge of the high-flown verbiage of modern military 
science; he thought the patriots won the battle of Kings 
Mountain because they shot straight. Of course, as he im- 
plied in every line, their aim was true because their hearts 
were pure. 

Despite its nineteenth-century style and a distinct pa- 
triotic bias in favor of the Whig cause, it is, even today, 
superb reading. Between the lines is the very human story 
of plundering, marauding, and murder on a disorganized 
frontier. It is a picture which Bancroft and other of Draper's 
contempories failed to portray, and it can be read with inter- 
est and profit by students of the Revolution and of the South, 
even after three quarters of a century. 

William B. Hesseltine. 
University of Wisconsin, 
Madison, Wisconsin. 

The Letters of William Gilmore Simms. Volume III— 1850-1857. 
Collected and edited by Mary C. Simms Oliphant, Alfred 
Taylor Odell, and T. C. Duncan Eaves. (Columbia: Univer- 
sity of South Carolina Press. 1954. Pp. xxvi, 564. $8.50.) 

The third volume of "The Letters of William Gilmore 
Simms" reveals anew the complexity of the task which faced 
the editors of Simms's prolific correspondence. It reveals also 
the scholarly thoroughness and the editorial skill of Simms's 
granddaughter, Mrs. Oliphant, and Eaves in making this cor- 
respondence available to the public. (Odell, who did much 
of the early work on the project, died shortly before volume 
I of the letters was published.) Scholars and students of 
southern literature will not cease to be grateful for their 
devoted efforts. 

In addition to printing the letters, the editors have includ- 
ed in this volume a list of the depositories or owners of man- 
uscripts, a chronological list of the Simms letters for the years 
1850-1857, more than seventeen hundred footnotes, an ap- 
pendix containing Simms's sensational lecture entitled "South 

Book Reviews 115 

Carolina in the Revolution," and a temporary index intended 
for use until the issuance of a complete index in the final 
volume of the five- volume series. 

As for the letters themselves in this third volume, they 
vary considerably in interest and value for the student of 
southern or American literature or even for specialists in 
Simms and his literary work. Simms was a conscientious 
correspondent who appears always to have felt that when he 
received a letter, he was in duty bound to answer it, even 
if it called for no more than a brief expression of thanks for 
some small favor. Though such notes show Simms as a polite 
southern gentleman, they do not provide very interesting 
reading; and one is inclined after a while to skim through 
these or even to skip over them with a mere glance in order 
to get to other letters with more meat in them. 

The Simms letters are concerned with many things; among 
them: family matters, routine editorial correspondence re- 
lating to the Southern Quarterly Review, travel experiences, 
and the management of the plantation at Woodlands, which 
required an increasing amount of work from Simms as his 
father-in-law became progressively feeble in mind and body. 
Of considerable interest to the present writer are Simms's 
political opinions and a number of his remarks about his 

A decade before the storm of war struck the South, Wil- 
liam Gilmore Simms was a secessionist at heart, and he an- 
ticipated the explosion long before it came. In November, 
1850, he wrote to Evert Duyckinck: "We are all absorbed in 
politics— the cauldron bubbling up furiously, and about to 
boil over. That it will do so, some day, you may be certain." 
A few days later in the same month he was writing to his 
Virginia friend Nathaniel Beverley Tucker: "Five years at 
the utmost— unless there be a great revolution in public sen- 
timent at the north— which is scarcely possible— will see the 
dissolution of the Union." One gets the impression in read- 
ing passages like these which appear in many of the letters, 
that Simms did not bother much to visualize the tremendous 
struggle which the southern states would be involved in if 
their secession were challenged by northern arms. He seems 

116 The North Carolina Historical Review 

from his letters to have been much more concerned about 
a grand declaration of southern freedom than about the high- 
ly intricate and extremely difficult process by which the 
southerners might maintain their freedom after they had 
declared it. 

Simms has often been criticized for having written too 
much, for having spread his talent too thin through his ready 
flow of words. The letters show that this prolixity was the 
result partly of Simms's own make-up as a writer and partly 
of the circumstantial necessity which forced him often to 
write like a mere drudge. In this latter connection there is 
a passage in a letter to Nathaniel Beverley Tucker, March 2, 
1851, which indicates one of Simms's many difficulties as 
editor of a magazine that sadly lacked the money to pay the 
contributors the editor wished to attract. As a result Simms 
had to depend upon the scribblings of irresponsible substi- 
tutes. "My toils [on the Southern Quarterly Review] are 
incessant," writes Simms. "You need not be told that we can 
seldom rely upon the punctuality of amateur writers, and 
at the last moment I am frequently compelled to turn in & 
write doggedly to fill out a number." 

In addition to this enforced writing which naturally suf- 
fered from being uninspired on the one hand and hurried 
on the other, there was much that Simms put down on paper 
because he felt an almost constant urge toward written 
composition. "With me," he comments to Marcus CM. Ham- 
mond, August 7, 1850, "it is habit to write." Even ill health 
and near physical exhaustion could not stop him. Writing 
to John Pendleton Kennedy, April 5, 1852, from Woodlands, 
to which he had supposedly retired for a rest, he makes 
clear how difficult this resting was. "I have been making a 
most laborious effort to be idle," he says. "But my habits 
of study and composition are so permanently established, . . . 
that I do not find it easy to obey admonitions of abstinence, 
however serious may be the necessity." Like Thomas Wolfe 
in our own century, Simms appears to have been unable to 
cease from pouring the words out. Whether an increase in 
polish and conciseness through slow, careful revision would 
have compensated sufficiently for a possible loss in natural 

Book Reviews 117 

vigor and warmth of expression in the novels of either Simms 
or Wolfe is the sort of question that helps to keep literary 
critics endlessly employed in debate. 

H. G. Kincheloe. 
North Carolina State College, 

The St. Augustine Expedition of 1740: A Report to the South 
Carolina General Assembly. Reprinted from the Colonial Rec- 
ords of South Carolina with an Introduction by John Tate 
Lanning. (Columbia: South Carolina Archives Department. 
Pp. xxviii, 182, map, index. Paper, $3.50.) 

Spanish and English history in the seventeenth and eight- 
eenth centuries include a confusing number of colonial wars. 
A resurgent Spain fought to destroy the English South Caro- 
lina settlements while Great Britain was determined not only 
to protect them, but also to extend her Atlantic colonies. The 
clash of national interests motivated many expeditions, one 
of the most interesting of which was led by James Ogle- 

In May, 1740, his army of Carolinians, Georgians, and 
Indians occupied Fort George Island at the mouth of the St. 
Johns River, marched down the coast to capture Fort Diego, 
and by June occupied three strategic places (Fort Moosa, 
Point Quartell, and Anastasia Island) north and east of St. 
Augustine. With gunboats blockading the harbor and the 
Matanzas River, the reduction of the strong, and heretofore 
impregnable Castillo de San Marcos seemed certain. But 
Oglethorpe diddled, refused to capture and destroy St. 
Augustine, thus forcing its inhabitants into the Castillo, and 
weakened his force by dividing it. A Spanish sally defeated 
the companies occupying Moosa, winds enabled Spanish 
ships to break the blockade, and illness in Oglethorpe's 
camps spread at an alarming rate. The siege was lifted and 
Florida evacuated. 

Almost immediately a committee of the lower house of 
the South Carolina Assembly investigated the cause of fail- 
ure. Before its findings were published, James Kilpatrick 
began a pamphlet war of Carolina and Oglethorpe apolo- 
gists. Three editions of the committee report appeared in 

118 The North Carolina Historical Review 

the 1740's and fragments of the report were published in the 
nineteenth century, but only a few copies of the complete 
report are extant. 

The St. Augustine Expedition of 1740 contains an excel- 
lent interpretative introduction by Lanning, an explanatory 
bibliographical note, the report, and an appendix of 139 
letters, statements, and accounts. Although the report and 
appendix are reprinted from the multi-volumed Colonial 
Records of South Carolina now in progress, edited by J. H. 
Easterby, this volume is of sufficient importance to stand 
alone. Rarely does one find an eighteenth century report 
with such a wealth of detail combined in a unified account 
and presented with impartiality. This source volume is es- 
sential for students of the British and Spanish colonial 

Rembert W. Patrick. 
University of Florida, 
Tallahassee, Florida. 

Reconstruction at Sewanee. The Founding of the University of 
the South and its First Administration, 1857-1872. By Arthur 
Benjamin Chitty, Jr. (Sewanee, Tennessee: The University 
Press, 1954. Pp. 207. $3.50.) 

This extremely readable volume traces the early history 
of the University of the South at Sewanee, Tennessee, from 
its ambitious founding in the prosperous years before the 
Civil War through its first administration in the trying Re- 
construction period. It is a story of large-scale planning, 
bitter disappointments, and modest fulfilment under devoted 
leaders. The University, as envisioned by its founders, 
Bishops Otey, Polk, and Elliott, was to be a great regional 
adventure controlled by the Episcopal Church, though 
mainly sponsored by ten Southern dioceses. The plans called 
for an isolated mountain domain and a magnificent campus 
which would become the center of a community receiving 
its tone from the University. The curriculum would embrace 
the major fields of knowledge, and it was expected that 
Sewanee would shortly rival the best universities in the coun- 
try. The war crushed these plans, but the ideal was not 
abandoned. Church support was reaffirmed and desperate 

Book Reviews 119 

efforts were made to obtain funds. Bishop Quintard, later 
the first vice-chancellor, even went to England for help, re- 
turning with #2,500 and grants of books from Oxford and 

In 1868 Sewanee opened its first session with four profes- 
sors and nine students— "the paltriest beginnings and the 
total absence of any means at all." But it was a start, and in 
spite of poverty the early period was one of growth which 
set an enduring pattern that reflected the traditions of Ox- 
ford and Cambridge, classical scholarship, the cadet military 
system, the civilization of the Old South, and the Episcopal 
Church. From the beginning Sewanee had been "striving 
toward a clearly drawn pattern rather than moving from 
experiment to experiment." Its goal remained "the training 
of youth in Christian virtue, in personal initiative, in self 
mastery, in . . . intellectual integrity." 

Mr. Chitty has told his story well. It is thoroughly docu- 
mented, with copious notes, bibliography, and photographs, 
much of the material coming from valuable unpublished 
diaries, letters, and University records. The many quotations 
give lively insights into the personalities of the founders, 
while references to southern history and to other universities 
give perspective to the central story. This book should be of 
value to anyone interested in the growth of American edu- 
cation, for it is the story of an institution now standing 
"among the nation's high one percent in scholarly achieve- 
ment of graduates." 

Porter Williams, Jr. 
North Carolina State College, 

Tobacco Dictionary. By Raymond Jahn. (New York: Philo- 
sophical Library, 1954. Pp. 199. $5.00.) 

This little volume will be useful indeed to those who, 
knowing little or nothing about the tobacco industry, regard 
the plant as romantic. It is a pioneer work in so far as the 
industry of the United States is concerned. 

Perhaps Mr. Jahn has only followed current American 
convictions in omitting names of farmers who have con- 

120 The North Carolina Historical Review 

tributed so notably to the development of the tobacco in- 
dustry. He includes countless manufacturers and even names 
of individuals connected with the redrying and storage of 
leaf tobacco. Nor does he omit William Fitzhugh, "one of 
the prominent members of the planter-class of the Chesa- 
peake Bay region," who amassed "54,000 acres and over fifty 
slaves." But, apparently unconcerned with the important 
work of various small farmers in the less distant past, he 
omits all reference to that pioneer breeder of tobacco seed, 
Robert L. Ragland; to Dr. Davis G. Tuck, originator of the 
flue; and to Samuel C. Shelton who devised the methods and 
rationale of curing single leaves of tobacco. It is on the work 
of such men as these that the great cigarette industry of 
today is based. That amazing entrepreneur, James B. Duke, 
grew up in their midst. 

In general, Tobacco Dictionary contains clear and accu- 
rate statements, although exception might be taken to the 
implication that Sir Walter Raleigh took Virginia tobacco 
"back to Europe with him." Some few definitions— notably 
"trash" and "fighting brands"— are perhaps too narrow and 
a number of varieties of tobacco have not been included. 
It was John J., not P. Arthur Adcock, who developed the 
Adcock variety. Moreover, this volume which is designed 
also to bring pleasure to the farmer contains "weeding" but 
does not include "wed" which, as any son of Virginia or 
North Carolina recognizes, is the past tense of "weed." 

Nannie M. Tilley. 
East Texas State Teachers College, 
Commerce, Texas. 

The Fremantle Diary. Editing and Commentary by Walter Lord. 
(Boston: Little, Brown and Company. 1954. Pp. xv, 304. 

Civil War readers have long been aware of young Colonel 
Fremantle, whether sharing a fork with Joseph E. Johnston, 
peering at the field of Gettysburg from high in a tree over 
Lee's command post, or making observations on southern 
life and society. Few have known him, however, except as 
quoted by others. His diary printed in London in 1863, is 
now reprinted, and made available for the pleasure of many. 

Book Reviews 


In the winter of 1863 Lieutenant Colonel James Arthur 
Lyon Fremantle, of Her Majesties Coldstream Guards, took 
leave from his regiment to see the great war in this country, 
and the southern gallantry and determination he so much 
admired. Landing in early April at the mouth of the Rio 
Grande, he worked his way east and north, seeing everything 
and everybody worth his attention, and making careful notes 
in his diary. He was deeply impressed by the American 
cocktail, by the custom of personal violence, by the need of 
shaking hands. He was friendly with many, among them 
Generals Beauregard, Hood, Johnston, Bragg, Polk, Lee, and 
Longstreet who years afterward remembered him with 
liking. Their friendly interest explains why he was able to 
see so much. After Gettysburg, he went through the lines to 
New York, saw the draft riots in July, and went home con- 
vinced that the South was "destined, sooner or later, to be- 
come a great and independent nation." 

To Col. Fremantle's fascinating story, Mr. Lord has added 
useful and colorful notes. The total production is an ex- 
tremely interesting addition to Civil War literature. It is 
unfortunate that the editorial standards are not as high. The 
text of the 1863 edition has been slightly altered in many 
places, without notice that this has been done. The notes 
contain much undocumented material, and the quotations 
are often inaccurately made. These and other instances of 
carelessness, as in referring to ambassadors at so early a date, 
lessen the value of the work, as does the lack of an index. 

Herbert W.Hill. 
Dartmouth College, 
Hanover, N. H. 

A History of the South. By Francis Butler Simkins. (New York: 
Alfred A. Knopf, 1953. Pp. xiii, 655. Illustrations, biblography, 
and index. $5.75.) 

In 1947 Simkins published The South Old and New: A 
History, 1820-1947. Now he offers a revision of his earlier 
work in which he has not only revised much of the first 
edition but has written several new chapters. Five of these 
treat of the period before 1820, where the 1947 book began, 

122 The North Carolina Historical Review 

and the last two bring the narrative from World War II to 
1952. The greatest changes are therefore at the beginning 
and the end, though there is substantial revision throughout 
and one new chapter on "Social Diversions" which the 
earlier edition did not have. 

Of the five chapters on the period before 1820, four of 
them cover various aspects of the colonial period, and the 
fifth one is on the Revolution in the South and its effects on 
the mind, character, institutions, and attitudes of the South- 
ern American. In none of these does Professor Simkins ex- 
plore beyond accepted presentations nor does he offer orig- 
inal interpretations: the chapters represent largely syntheses 
of earlier works. He examines and explains the English pat- 
tern of life which dominated Southern ways and concludes 
that the Revolution did little— though it did a little— to change 
them. The military aspects of the Revolution in the South 
are largely neglected and, curiously, the period between 
1800 and 1820 is completely ignored. Although these five 
chapters have been added at the beginning, the general 
division of the work remains as before. About half the book 
concerns the period since Reconstruction. Here Simkins 
seems to feel more at home and here, undoubtedly, he in- 
tended his emphasis to be. 

In none of the work, first or last, does Simkins pretend 
to survey the South's contributions to American history. 
Rather he is interested in stressing the traits of mind and 
character, and the variety of influences, which made the 
South a distinct cultural province, conscious of its distinct- 
iveness and of its identity. On themes such as these Simkins 
is at his best, and his best is very good. There are portions 
of fine writing, such as the excellent chapter on literature 
in the New South, and there are numerous provocative eval- 
uations where Simkins speaks his mind in analyzing the 
movements, trends, and attitudes he is describing. He makes 
many judgments, and some of them will provoke quarrels 
among southerners, but his judgments are characterized by 
authority and understanding, for he knows how to be critical 
and sympathetic in the same process. He condones without 
sentimentality and condemns without offensiveness. 

Book Reviews 123 

The result is a book which is more than anything else a 
group of related essays characterized by clarity of writing, 
richness of knowledge, originality of presentation, and ma- 
turity of judgment. Conclusions are buttressed by pages 
of statistics and catalogues of names, and both grow tiresome 
at times. The undergraduate student may enjoy this book, but 
he will not understand it unless he has more than a fair 
knowledge of general American history before he tackles this 
regional review. Because of these features it is not a very 
teachable book, though this is not necessarily a criticism. 

There are inevitably a few errors but only one seems im- 
portant enough to mention. There are excellent bibliogra- 
phies, arranged by chapters, but this feature is spoiled by the 
fact that the readings for chapters xxv-xxii have no rela- 
tion to the subject matter of the chapters they professedly rep- 
resent. The wrong numbering is, of course, a technical error 
and is a small item over which to quibble in so excellent a 

Frontis W. Johnston. 
Davidson College, 

Caracas Diary, 1835-1840. By John G. A. Williamson. Edited 
by Jane Lucas de Grummond. (Baton Rouge: Camillia Pub- 
lishing Company, Inc. Pp. 444. $10.00.) 

In 1954 the diplomatic and commercial relations between 
the United States and Venezuela are close and important. 
One-sixth of all our capital investments in Latin America are 
in Venezuela and the two nations are increasingly inter- 
dependent. The relations were neither close nor important 
in 1835 when our neighbor was in swaddling clothes as a 
nation and more dependent on England than on her youth- 
ful neighbor republic in North America. 

That year a native of Roxboro, North Carolina, John G. 
A. Williamson, was assigned to be our first diplomatic rep- 
resentative to the new South American republic. The ap- 
pointment as charge d'affaires capped nine years of service 
by Williamson as our consul in the same general area. Wil- 
liamson kept a diary during his more than four years in 

124 The North Carolina Historical Review 

Caracas, which has been resurrected, documented and pub- 
lished by a thorough and conscientious editor. 

Dr. Jane Lucas de Grummond, native Pennsylvanian, now 
associate professor of history at Louisiana State University, 
first encountered the Williamson diary in the William T. 
Morrey Collection at Louisiana State while she was a gradu- 
ate student in 1942. At that time she published extracts from 
it under the title of Envoy to Caracas. The complete work 
emerges bearing the clear impression of a great deal of 
scholarly labor. The result is that a very personal editorship 
throws interestingly colored slides over the historical events 
of the birth of a nation. 

The rambling, subjective observations and reflections of 
Williamson, characterized by poor spelling and increasing 
morbidity, have been converted into a document of consider- 
able historical worth. This has been done without reducing 
the pungency of the candid eye-witness account of life in 
Caracas during the first few years of Venezuela's career as a 
free nation. 

Something about the diarist: Williamson was aided by a 
well-to-do and doting father in getting his education. He 
had a brief business experience in New York where an ad- 
mirer classified him as the "handsomest" man in the city. 
He married a Philadelphia woman and returned to North 
Carolina to seek a political career. He failed in a bid for a 
seat in Congress, but he was a loyal supporter of Old Hick- 
ory, and it was Jackson who appointed him to his posts in 

His diary covers the years of his service in Caracas, but 
it refers frequently to incidents and people who had been 
active during the nine preceding years in Venezuelan life. 
Altogether, Williamson's two jobs spanned the hectic years 
of readjustment following independence from Spain. He had 
brief personal contact with Simon Bolivar, the George Wash- 
ington of South America, and some of his principal satellites. 
Offended by the liberator's indifference to the lusty, but 
youthful republic which he represented, as well as by Boli- 
var's open adulation of Britain, the diarist nourished a definite 
dislike for both Bolivar and the British. 

Book Reviews 125 

His distaste for his British colleague in Caracas, Sir Robert 
Ker Porter, is aired frequently in his diary, and he accused 
Bolivar of increasing infidelity to the democracy he professed. 
He hints that Bolivar's early death obscured this unfaithful- 
ness and came in good time to prevent the exposure of the 
liberator's own royalist ambitions. Williamson's obvious sen- 
sitiveness to personal slights, real or facied, colors and dis- 
colors his report. His diary remains, nevertheless, a close-up 
eye-witness account of men and their methods in a most im- 
portant period in the life of the country. History gives suf- 
ficient support to some of his appraisals of men to warn 
against a casual dismissal of all of them as badly distorted. 
This may be said in spite of his caustic comments about the 
revered leader of the forces of South American independence. 

Williamson's comments on the manners and morals of 
Caracas society are savage. As he climbed the dusty trails 
where now the most costly roadway in the world leads from 
the sea to the great capital city, or rode horseback to the 
picnic ground, where now stands the most beautiful country 
club in the Americas, he speculated on the personalities of 
many who lived in the dirty little city of some 30,000 inhabi- 
tants and groaned in the weakness of his own flesh. 

He went pridefully to his assignment, apparently was dil- 
igent in the relatively trivial duties of his post but both 
pleasure and pride dwindled and his diary entries became 
sour and unhappy. His longing to return to the United States, 
stayed only by the need to accumulate a little money, may 
have been caused less by the faults in his environment than 
by the restlessness of a strangely inconsistent helpmate and 
his own failing health. Though no word of criticism of his 
wife appears, there is tragedy in each line of his diary as 
the time approaches for consummation of her stubborn re- 
solve to return to Philadelphia, regardless of his course. She 
sailed in May, 1840 and less than three months later on 
August 7, he died in Caracas, probably of cancer. Ultimate- 
ly throughout the diary trickles a distillation of pain and 
bitterness and it ends abruptly when his wife departs. 

An ironic twist at the finish is that Williamson had to call 
on his dispised British colleague to take over his office and 

126 The North Carolina Historical Review 

make his final report to the United States Department of 

"I have the honor," wrote Sir Robert Ker Porter, "of ad- 
dressing you in order to impart the melancholy intelligence 
of the death of Mr. J. G. A. Williamson, charge d'affaires 
from the U. States to this Republic. He died at 10 o'clock 
on the night of the 7th instant in this city and his remains 
were interred this morning in the British Cemetery with 
every honor, respect and attention due to his public and 
private character." One may speculate wryly as to whether 
Sir Robert came upon and perused the diary. 

Capus M. Waynick. 
High Point. 

Charles A. Beard : An Appraisal. Howard K. Beale, editor. (Lex- 
ington: University of Kentucky Press, 1954. pp. xiii, 312. 

Any book about Charles A. Beard, one of the most in- 
fluential, significant, and incidentally one of the most con- 
troversial, historians of the United States would arouse in- 
terest. The caliber of the co-authors of this Appraisal in- 
sures its value and importance in the field of history. Eric 
F. Goldman leads off with an impressionistic view of Beard. 
It is an excellent and stirring pen picture of a combination of 
rugged hardheadedness, kindliness, patriotism, and a restive 
quest for truth, justice, and freedom. Then follow Harold J. 
Laski with an English view; Max Lerner on political theory; 
Luther Gulic on muncipal reform; George Soule on planning; 
Richard Hofstadter on the constitution; Walton Hamilton 
on "the Politics"; Howard K. Beale on the historian; George 
R. Leighton on foreign policy; Merle Curti on the critic; 
Arthur W. MacMahon on the teacher; George S. Counts on 
the public man; and Howard K. Beale on Beard's historical 
writings. The book also contains a bibliography of Beard's 
published writings, and a who's who of the authors. The 
limits of this review do not permit each article to be dealt 
with individually. All are of value but it seems that the 
articles by Walton Hamilton, interesting though it is, has 
little place in the volume. 

Book Reviews 127 

Naturally, with such an approach, there is some overlap- 
ping and repetition in the essays, but both have been kept to 
a minimum and do not mar the value of the Appraisal. In 
fact, they may be said to strengthen it. An interesting repe- 
tition that casts light on one of Beard's fundamental quali- 
ties is the story of Beard's connection with the Connecticut 
dairy farmers' strike. Running through all the essays is the 
central theme of Beard's broad grasp of history and human 
society, his sincere patriotism, and his deep desire to improve 
man's condition and free him from the bonds that restrain 
him from the fullest development of his opportunities. Beard 
made important contributions to government planning, pub- 
lic administration, and municipal government. Broadly train- 
ed himself, he believed that it was the obligation and func- 
tion of every citizen to translate his knowledge and under- 
standing of government into positive action. 

But it was as a historian that Beard made his greatest 
contribution and the essays of Hofstadter, Curti, and Beale 
are of primary value in the appraisal of his work in this 
field. Beard published forty-seven volumes of history that 
had a total circulation of nearly thirteen and one half million 
by 1949. These books embrace both European and American 
history as well as the philosophy of history and history's 
place in the social studies. But the quality of Beard's work is 
more significant than the quantity. More than ony other 
American historian Beard stimulated an interest in the eco- 
nomic interpretation of history. In this he was influenced by 
Karl Marx but he did not accept the Marxian philosophy of 
dialectical materialism. In his An Economic Interpretation 
of the Constitution Beard hit at the tradition of individual- 
ism in American thinking and raised up a veritable storm of 
protest. Today, however, Beard's views on economic in- 
fluences on the Constitution and American history generally 
are widely accepted. Beard's insistence that "domestic af- 
fairs and foreign affairs are intimately associated with each 
other" was another of his contributions. In this area, too, 
Beard stirred up a storm of protest, particularly with his 
books dealing with Roosevelt's policies and the coming 
of the second World War. Professor Beale says that while 

128 The North Carolina Historical Review 

"many loved him; many hated him." Whether Beard's views 
in this field will come to be accepted is yet to be seen. 

This is an interesting and worthwhile book. It is to be 
lamented that no index was prepared. 

Fletcher M. Green. 
University of North Carolina, 
Chapel Hill. 


The Executive Board of the Department of Archives and 
History met in Raleigh on August 20, when budgetary esti- 
mates for the 1955-1957 biennium were approved. 

In Winston-Salem on August 26 a marker was unveiled for 
the first registered Guernsey cattle brought to the state. The 
ceremonies were conducted by the North Carolina Guernsey 
Breeders Association, and those participating in the program 
included Mayor Marshall C. Kurfees, Mr. Alfred M. Brown, 
Mrs. T. Holt Haywood, Dr. Douglas L. Rights, and Dr. 
Christopher Crittenden. 

On August 29 a historical marker for the historic landmark, 
the Flat Rock, was unveiled at the Town of Flat Rock, 
Henderson County. The Department of Archives and History 
was represented by Mrs. Sadie Smathers Patton, Board mem- 
ber, who was master of ceremonies; Board member Clarence 
W. Griffin, who made a brief address; Dr. Christopher Crit- 
tenden, director, who spoke briefly; and Mr. W. S. Tarlton, 
researcher. The principal address was delivered by Major 
General Edward P. King, United States Army, retired. 

The Historic Sites Commission met in Greensboro, August 
31, considered several requests for approval of sites for state 
aid, and heard an explanation by Mr. George H. Esser of 
the Institute of Government, regarding the proposed reor- 
ganization of state government insofar as the historic sites 
are concerned. 

The Tryon Palace Commission met with the Advisory Bud- 
get Commission in New Bern on September 3-4, and met 
again in Greensboro on November 29. At the latter meeting 
the chief item of business was the consideration of the plans 
and specifications that had been prepared by Mr. William G. 
Perry, the architect. It is expected that the contract for the 
main building will be let within a few weeks. 

[129 ] 

130 The North Carolina Historical Review 

Dr. Christopher Crittenden attended the annual meeting 
of the American Association for State and Local History in 
Madison, Wisconsin, September 9-11. At that meeting the 
Association announced forty-seven annual awards, of which 
three came to North Carolina: to Hugh Talmage Lefler 
and the late Albert Ray Newsome for their work, North 
Carolina: The History of a Southern State (University of 
North Carolina Press); to the Raleigh Model Railroad Club 
for installing a railroad exhibit in the Hall of History; and 
to the State Department of Archives and History for its first 
half century of achievement and service. 

On September 23 Mr. Elbert Cox of Richmond, Va., re- 
gional director of the National Park Service, was the principal 
speaker at the annual celebration at Moore's Creek National 
Military Park. Mr. Ashley Murphy, Dr. Christopher Critten- 
den, and others spoke. Mr. J. V. Whitfield, chairman of the 
battleground committee, presided. 

On September 25 in Raleigh memorial services were con- 
ducted for the late Dr. George Marion Cooper, who for many 
years served with the State Board of Health, and a tablet 
in honor of Dr. Cooper was unveiled in the Cooper Memorial 
Health Building. Participating in the program were the late 
Governor William B. Umstead, Dr. G. Grady Dixon, Dr. 
Amos B. Johnson, Dr. J. W. R. Norton, and Dr. J. H. Hamil- 

In the Hall of History, October 1, a party was held for the 
purpose of securing public aid in identifying a number of 
pictures left to the Department by the late Albert Barden of 
Raleigh. These pictures were numbered, and placed on the 
walls, and prizes were offered to the persons who identified 
the largest number of photographs. Seventy-five or more per- 
sons attended. Many of the pictures were identified. 

On October 13 in Vance County a marker was unveiled for 
Judge Richard Henderson. Dr. Archibald Henderson of the 
University of North Carolina delivered an address, and Dr. 
Christopher Crittenden spoke briefly. At Mars Hill on October 

Historical News 131 

15 Dr. Christopher Crittenden addressed the North Carolina 
Baptist college social studies teachers on "The Writing and 
Preservation of Local History." 

In Gaston County, October 16, a marker for Revolutionary 
General Joseph Dickson was unveiled. Mr. Frank B. Rankin 
of Mount Holly delivered an address and Mr. Clarence W. 
Griffin and Dr. Christopher Crittenden made short talks. The 
ceremonies were conducted by the William Gaston Chapter, 
Daughters of the American Revolution, with Mrs. Kay Dixon 
of Gastonia, the regent, presiding. 

The annual church services and picnic luncheon were held 
on October 17 at restored St. John's Church in Vance County. 
The services were conducted by Bishop E. A. Penick and 
Reverend I. Harding Hughes, both of the Protestant Episco- 
pal Church. At a business meeting Dr. Lawrence F. London, 
chairman of the restoration committee, presided and reports 
were made regarding the restoration project. Dr. Crittenden 
represented the Department of Archives and History. 

On October 26 Dr. Crittenden spoke at the unveiling of 
a portrait of Governor James Turner in the Warrenton Public 
Library. The ceremonies were conducted by the Warren 
County Historical Society. 

In Chicago, October 28-30, Dr. Crittenden attended the 
annual meeting of the National Trust for Historic Preserva- 
tion, of which he is a trustee. On November 3 he was present 
at the first meeting of the advisory board of the new American 
Heritage (magazine of history). 

North Carolinians participating in the programs of the 
Southern Historical Association at the annual meeting in 
Columbia, S. C. November 11-13 were as follows: Dr. Chris- 
topher Crittenden of the Department of Archives and His- 
tory; Dr. Loren C. MacKinney and Dr. J. Carlyle Sitterson of 
the University of North Carolina; Dr. David L. Smiley of 
Wake Forest College; Dr. Rosser H. Taylor of Western Caro- 

132 The North Carolina Historical Review 

lina College; Dr. Robert F. Durden, Dr. Paul H. Clyde, Dr. 
E. Malcolm Carroll, Dr. William H. Cartwright, and Dr. 
William B. Hamilton of Duke University. 

On November 20 in Hollywood Cemetery, Richmond, Va., 
Dr. Crittenden spoke at the unveiling of a memorial at the 
grave of Henry Lawson Wyatt of Edgecombe County, N. C, 
first soldier in the Confederate Service to be killed in battle 
(at Big-Bethel, June 10, 1861). The ceremonies were con- 
ducted by the Lee Chapter, United Daughters of the Con- 
federacy, Richmond. 

On November 30 in Hobgood, Halifax County, a marker 
was unveiled for General James Hogan. Mr. W. S. Tarlton, 
representing the Department of Archives and History, made 
the principal address. 

Sir Walter Raleigh Day was celebrated in the public 
schools of the state on December 3. The State Superintendent 
of Public Instruction had been empowered "to permit volun- 
tary donations to be made by the school children of the 
State for the erection of a memorial in the City of Raleigh in 
honor of Sir Walter Raleigh." The celebration was planned 
by the Sir Walter Raleigh Commission, of which Governor 
Luther H. Hodges is chairman; Dr. Clarence Poe, vice chair- 
man; Dr. Charles F. Carroll, secretary; and Mr. Robert Lee 
Humber, chairman of the executive committee. 

The annual meetings of the various cultural societies were 
held in Raleigh, December 1-4. The first meeting was the 
business session of the North Carolina State Art Society. 
Mrs. Katherine Pendleton Arrington of Warrenton was re- 
elected president of the Society at a meeting of the board of 
directors. Also re-elected by the board were Robert Lee 
Humber of Greenville, vice president and chairman of the 
executive committee; Mrs. James H. Cordon of Raleigh, 
treasurer; Miss Lucy Cherry Crisp of Raleigh, executive 
secretary and gallery director. Mrs. J. H. B. Moore of Greens- 
ville, John Allcott of Chapel Hill, and Mrs. Jacques Busbee 

Historical News 133 

of Steeds were re-elected vice presidents at large. Elected 
to two-year terms on the board of directors were State 
Treasurer Edwin Gill, Mrs. Isabelle Bowen Henderson and 
Dr. Clarence Poe of Raleigh, and Dr. Clemmons Sommer of 
Chapel Hill. State Auditor Henry L. Bridgers and Jonathan 
Daniels of Raleigh, Gregory Ivey of Greensboro, and Mrs. 
Kenneth Mountcastle, Jr., of Winston-Salem, were elected 
to one-year terms on the board. Mr. Humber reported that 
it would probably be 1956 before the state receives the 
$1,000,000 art gift from the Samuel H. Kress Foundation. 

Dr. Charles F. Carroll of Raleigh presided at the luncheon 
meeting of the Art Society and Dr. James Sprunt was the 
speaker. A report on the museum building and progress in 
the art collection was made by Mr. Robert Lee Humber 
who reported that objects of art, consisting of valuable paint- 
ings, porcelains, tapestries, and furniture, valued at approxi- 
mately $703,900 had been donated to the state during 1954. 

Mr. John H. Kerr, Jr., of Warrenton received the Society's 
Certificate of Merit and Achievement for distinguished serv- 
ice to the North Carolina State Art Society. Mr. Kerr was 
largely responsible for the passage in the General Assembly 
of 1947, of the bill appropriating $1,000,000 for the purchase 
of objects of art. 

Mr. Robert Lee Humber presided at the evening meeting 
of the Society and Dr. Marshall Fishwick, associate professor 
of American Studies of Washington and Lee University, 
spoke on "Art in Our Daily Life and the Art Museum's Role 
in the Community." Winners of the 1954 Purchase Awards in 
the North Carolina Artists Competition were announced. The 
awards were presented by Miss Lucy Cherry Crisp to Mr. 
Claude Howell of Wilmington for his semi-abtract oil paint- 
ing, "Beach Umbrella," Mr. Philip Moose of Newton for his 
impressionistic oil, "The Plaza," and Mr. Harry Ellensweig, 
State College student, for his ink and watercolor, "City 
Maze." After Dr. Fishwick's address a reception and preview 
of the North Carolina Artists' Exhibition were held in the 
State Art Gallery. 

134 The North Carolina Historical Review 

The Roanoke Island Historical Association held a luncheon 
meeting, December 1, at the Hotel Sir Walter. 

On December 2 the North Carolina Society for the Preser- 
vation of Antiquities held its fourteenth annual meeting. The 
morning program of the session was composed of reports on 
restoration and preservation projects. Mr. James A. Sten- 
house, chairman of the Historic Sites Commission, reported 
on St. Thomas Church at Bath and the Alston House in the 
Horseshoe. Mrs. John A. Kellenberger, chairman of the Tyron 
Palace Commission, stated that it had been decided to enlarge 
the grounds at the Palace and, if possible, restore the original 
park. Mrs. Dorothy R. Phillips, Hall of History, Raleigh, gave 
a slide program on "Historic Buildings in North Carolina." 
The officers of the Society were re-elected for another year. 

At the luncheon meeting of the Antiquities Society Mr.. 
John A. Kellenberger of Greensboro presided. Mrs. Sterling 
M. Gary of Halifax presented Chancellor Robert B. House 
of the University of North Carolina, who spoke on the Halifax 
Resolves of April 12, 1776. Mr. James A. Stenhouse discussed 
the restoration and preservation of historic buildings in Hali- 

Miss Gertrude S. Carraway of New Bern presided over the 
evening meeting. Fourteen new life members were presented. 
The Cannon Awards were presented to the following: Attor- 
ney General Harry McMullan, Raleigh, for his aid to the 
Society in the preservation of historic sites; Mrs. Walter M. 
Stearns, Raleigh, for the preservation of her home, "Haywood 
Hall," which was built in 1792; Miss Cora A. Harris, Char- 
lotte, writer and landscape gardener, for her designing and 
execution of period plantings for restoration projects, and for 
her writings in history and horticulture; Colonel Jeffrey F. 
Stanback, Mount Gilead, for his work in historical research 
and writing, his setting up of the Montgomery County Ar- 
chives, and his endeavors in having old places in the state 
restored; Mr. and Mrs. George D. Allen, Scarsdale, New 
York, for their work with Duke University and the Duke 

Historical News 135 

Endowment, as well as their restoration work in Warrenton; 
Mr. Cecil B. DeMille, formerly of Washington, North Caro- 
lina, for his many fine films. The program was presented by 
the Charles B. Aycock Memorial Commission of which Dr. 
D. J. Rose, Goldsboro, is chairman. "The Vision of Charles 
Brantley Aycock," by John Ehle and directed by Clifton 
Britton, was presented. A reception was held after the meet- 

On December 3 the State Literary and Historical Associa- 
tion held its annual meeting. Mrs. Inglis Fletcher presided 
at the morning session when the reports of the secretary- 
treasurer and of the committees were given and resolutions 
were passed. In the election of officers Dr. Fletcher M. Green, 
head of the history department at the University of North 
Carolina, succeeded Mrs. Inglis Fletcher of Edenton as presi- 
dent of the association; Mr. John Harden of Greensboro, Mr. 
Hugh Morton of Wilmington, and Dr. R. H. Taylor of Cullo- 
whee were elected vice presidents. Dr. Christopher Critten- 
den, director of the Department of Archives and History, 
was re-elected secretary-treasurer. Dr. Lillian Parker Wal- 
lace of Meredith College and Dr. William H. Cartwright of 
Duke University were elected members of the executive com- 

The program of the Literary and Historical Association 
began with Dr. Paul Murray of Greenville speaking on "The 
North Carolina Historical Review— The First Thirty Years." 
Mr. Harry Golden of Charlotte talked on "The Jewish People 
of North Carolina" and Mr. Robert Mason of Sanford gave 
a review of North Carolina fiction of the year. The R. D. W. 
Connor Award for the best article on North Carolina history 
or biography in The North Carolina Historical Review was 
presented by Dr. Lillian Parker Wallace to Mr. Hugh F. 
Rankin, graduate student at the University of North Carolina, 
for his article, "Cowpens: Prelude to Yorktown." Mr. Roy 
Parker, Sr., of Ahoskie presented the Roanoke-Chowan 
Poetry Award to Mr. Thad Stem, Jr., of Oxford for his volume 
of verse entitled "The Jackknife Horse." Mrs. Mebane Holo- 

136 The North Carolina Historical Review 

man Burgwyn of Jackson was presented the American Asso- 
ciation of University Women's Juvenile Literature Award by 
Mrs. Carl A. Plonk of Asheville for her book, Penny Rose. 

Mr. D. L. Corbitt of the State Department of Archives and 
History presided at the luncheon meeting of the Association 
and Dr. Leonard B. Hurley of Greensboro gave a review of 
North Carolina non-fiction for the year. 

The subscription dinner was presided over by Mr. Capus 
M. Waynick of High Point and Mrs. Inglis Fletcher gave the 
presidential address. Dr. D. J. Whitener of Boone presided 
at the evening meeting. The address, "The Elizabethan Poli- 
tics and Colonial Enterprise," was given by Dr. Louis B. 
Wright of the Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington, 
D. C. Mrs. Preston B. Wilkes, Jr., governor, Society of May- 
flower Descendants in the State of North Carolina, presented 
the Mayflower Society Award to Dr. Hugh T. Lefler of 
Chapel Hill and the late Dr. A. R. Newsome of Chapel Hill, 
for their book, North Carolina, The History of a Southern 
State; and Miss Clara Booth Byrd, Greensboro, president of 
the Historical Book Club, presented the Sir Walter Raleigh 
Award to Mr. Ovid William Pierce of Weldon for his novel, 
The Plantation. A reception was held after the meeting. 

The North Carolina Society of County and Local His- 
torians met on the afternoon of December 3. The Society an- 
nounced the plan for the presentation of an annual award 
for the best historical feature published in the newspapers 
of the state. The perpetuation of the Smithwick Award was 
announced and it will be given by Mr. and Mrs. S. T. Peace 
of Henderson. The award will be made for the best local 
historical work published in book form. It will be given on 
alternate years. Officers re-elected were: Mr. William S. 
Powell, Chapel Hill, president; Mr. Manly Wade Wellman, 
Chapel Hill, Colonel Jeffrey F. Stanback, Mt. Gilead, and 
Mrs. S. T. Peace, Henderson, vice presidents. Mrs. Musella 
W. Wagner of Chapel Hill was re-elected secretary-treasurer. 
"The Junior Historian Movement" was described by Dr. 

Historical News 


Jonathan C. McLendon of Durham and Dr. Harry R. Stevens 
of Durham discussed "The Progress and Future of County 
History Writing/' 

at the meeting of the North Carolina Folklore Society, which 
was held on the afternoon of December 3, Mr. Manly W. 
Wellman spoke on "The Writer's Use of Folklore." After 
his talk Miss Margaret Underwood of Greensboro sang 
"Vandy, Vandy," and other North Carolina folksongs. Mr. 
James M. Carpenter discussed "Folklore Collecting in Britian 
and America." 

The North Carolina Poetry Society also held its meeting 
on Friday afternoon, December 3. Mr. Paul Bartlett of 
Charlotte presided in the absence of Mrs. W. H. Vestal of 
Winston-Salem, president. Mr. Richard Walser of Raleigh 
issued greetings, and Mr. Stewart Atkins of Gastonia re- 
sponded. The program of the meeting was "The History of 
the North Carolina Poetry Society," by Miss Zoe Kincaid 
Brockman of Gastonia. Recognition was given by Mr. Paul 
Bartlett to members who had published volumes of poetry. 
Mr. James Larkin Pearson, Poet Laureate of North Carolina, 
Guilford College, Mr. Frank Borden Hanes, Winston-Salem, 
1953 Poetry Award winner, and Mr. Thad Stem, Jr., Oxford, 
winner of the present year; spoke briefly. 

The members of the North Carolina Society of County and 
Local Historians were guests at the September 5 meeting of 
the Stanly County Historical Society. A tour included visits 
to several old homes and churches as well as to the aluminum 
plant at Badin and Morrow Mountain State Park. After lunch 
the group visited Pfeiffer College at Meisenheimer. 

On October 10 the members of the North Carolina Society 
of County and Local Historians were the guests at a tour 
arranged by Mr. James G. W. MacClamroch and Mr. Raleigh 
C. Taylor, which covered northern Guilford County, Greens- 
boro, and the Guilford Courthouse Battleground. A picnic 
lunch was enjoyed by the members who attended. 

138 The North Carolina Historical Review 

The Society of American Archivists eighteenth annual meet- 
ing at Williamsburg, Virginia, September 12-13, was attended 
by Dr. Christopher Crittenden, Mr. D. L. Corbitt, Mr. W. 
Frank Burton, Mrs. Doris H. Harris, and Mrs. Frances Whit- 
ley all of the Department staff. Dr. Crittenden talked on the 
subject, "The North Carolina Record Center," and Mr. Burton 
spoke on "Microfilming State Records." 

Dr. Marvin L. Skaggs, professor and head of the depart- 
ment of history at Greensboro College, delivered the principal 
address at the September 17 ceremonies at Guilford Battle- 
ground, when the Daughters of the American Revolution 
presented a Revolutionary drum to Guilford Courthouse Na- 
tional Military Park. Dr. Christopher Crittenden was present 
and talked briefly about the drum. 

The Restored Wachovia Museum was opened on Septem- 
ber 18 by the late Governor William B. Umstead, in Old 
Salem, Winston-Salem. The restoration project was promoted 
and carried through by Old Salem, Inc., and is a part of their 
long-range program to recapture as nearly as possible the 
atmosphere and actuality of the Wachovia settlement. The 
museum was originally begun by the Young Men's Missionary 
Society of the Moravian Church. 

The Wachovia Historical Society at its annual meeting on 
October 19, presented three North Carolina writers with 
Spangenberg Medals commemorating the first settlement in 
Wachovia. Those who were so honored were Mr. William 
T. Polk, author of Southern Accent; Mr. James S. Brawley, 
who wrote The Rowan Story; and Dr. Hugh T. Lefler, who 
co-authored North Carolina, The History of a Southern State. 
Mr. Polk, who was the principal speaker, is an associate edi- 
tor of the Greensboro Daily News. 

On September 26 Dr. Blackwell P. Robinson, professor of 
history at High Point College, and Mrs. Inglis Fletcher, 
novelist, were the featured speakers at the Homecoming Day 
program of the historic Old Bethesda Presbyterian Church 

Historical News 139 

near Aberdeen. The program, which was attended by hun- 
dreds of the descendants of the Scottish settlers, lasted 
throughout the day and a picnic lunch was served. Mr. J. 
Talbot Johnson, chairman for 27 successive years, presided 
and students from Flora MacDonald College gave a program 
of religious music. Mrs. Fletcher's talk was on the topic, 
"History and the Writing of a Novel." Dr. Robinson read 
excerpts from his forthcoming history of Moore County. 

An article which described the Robert H. Davis Collection 
of O. Henry ana appeared in the October 17 edition of the 
Greensboro Daily News. It was written by Mr. Burke Davis, 
feature writer of the Daily News and author of the recent 
book, They Called Him Stonewall. 

Mrs. Joye E. Jordan, head of the Division of Museums of 
the Department of Archives and History, accompanied by 
Mrs. Dorothy R. Phillips and Miss Barbara McKeithan, at- 
tended the annual meeting of the Southeastern Museums 
Conference in Miami, Fla., October 20-23. Mrs. Jordan is 
secretary- treasurer of this group. 

On November 9 Mrs. Jordan spoke to the Dunn Junior 
Woman's Club on "North Carolina Pottery." 

The thirtieth anniversary celebration of the Greensboro 
Historical Museum was held on October 28 with a luncheon 
address by Governor Luther H. Hodges, then lieutenant gov- 
ernor, and a visit to the museum which featured the Robert 
H. Davis Collection of O. Henry ana. Mr. Karl E. Prickett is 
president of the Museum and Mr. McDaniel Lewis was chair- 
man of the thirtieth anniversary celebration. Mr. W. Frank 
Burton, Mr. W. S. Tarlton, Mrs. Joye E. Jordan, and Mrs. 
Dorothy R. Phillips of the Department of Archives and His- 
tory attended the meeting. 

The following papers were read at the fall meeting of the 
North Carolina Historical Society on October 29: Dr. Sarah 

140 The North Carolina Historical Review 

Lemmon, "Eugene Talmadge and Dean Cocking"; Mr. Rich- 
ard Walser, "The Mysterious Case of George Higby Throop, 
1818-1896"; and Dr. J. G. de R. Hamilton, "General Robert 
F. Hoke and His Military Career." Dr. Robert H. Woody of 
Duke University was elected president and Mrs. Julia Spruill, 
vice president. Dr. Frontis W. Johnston was re-elected secre- 
tary-treasurer and the following members were elected to the 
council: Dr. Alice B. Kieth, Dr. Sam H. Hobbs, Jr., and Dr. 
Rosser H. Taylor. 

Mr. Clarence W. Griffin of Forest City, a member of the 
Executive Board, represented the Department of Archives 
and History at the unveiling of a historical marker on October 
31 at the home place of Captain William Moore in Buncombe 
County. The marker was erected in cooperation with the 
Unaka Chapter of the Daughters of American Colonists. 

The Western North Carolina Historical Association met on 
November 6 at Brevard College. The business session was 
presided over by Mr. Sam E. Beck, president, of Asheville. 
Mr. Clarence W. Griffin, vice president, of Forest City in- 
troduced those on the program. Following a welcome by Rev. 
Robert Stamey, president of Brevard College, Mr. L. P. 
Hamlin talked on "The History of Transylvania County." 

The Executive Committee of the North Carolina Register 
of Deeds Association met in Raleigh on November 10-11 to 
outline a legislative program. Mr. W. Frank Burton, head of 
the Division of Archives, worked with the group in an ad- 
visory capacity. 

The popular historical magazine, American Heritage, which 
first began publication five years ago, was issued on Decem- 
ber 6 in its new book format. This publication has been great- 
ly expanded into book form and contains 124 pages of which 
27 are 4-color process pictures. It is jointly sponsored by 
the American Association for State and Local History and the 
Society of American Historians. The book will be sold through 
book stores and not on magazine or news stands. 

Historical News 141 

The Catawba County Historical Association recently elect- 
ed Mr. Sam G. Rowe, Newton civil engineer, to succeed Dr. 
J. E. Hodges of Maiden as president. Other officers include 
Mrs. J. C. Plonk of Hickory, vice president; Mrs. Pearl Miller 
Tomlinson of Hickory, secretary; and Mrs. J. M. Ballard of 
Newton, treasurer. The society has decided to start a county 
museum as its principal project for the coming year. 

The county commissioners of Montgomery County recently 
authorized a depository for the preservation of important 
manuscripts, documents, and county records. Colonel Jeffrey 
F. Stanback of Mount Gilead was appointed county his- 
torian. A number of important collections have been promised 
as well as several old maps when the depository is set up. 
January, 1955, has been set as a possible date when the 
archives will be available to the public. 

Miss Lynette Adcock, originally of Oxford, North Carolina, 
who is at present connected with Colonial Williamsburg, Inc., 
Williamsburg, Virginia, compiled the statistics for the new 
book, Guide to the Manuscript Collections of Colonial Wil- 

Mr. D. L. Corbitt, editor of the Division of Publications 
of the Department of Archives and History, attended a num- 
ber of meetings of county historical societies and addressed 
others during the last quarter. On September 25 he assisted 
in the organizational meeting of the Carteret County County 
Historical Society in Beaufort and spoke on the various phases 
of achieving a permanent society. Two weeks later following 
a membership drive 40 charter members elected the follow- 
ing officers: Mrs. Nat Smith of Gloucester, president, and 
Miss Amy Muse of Beaufort, secretary and curator. On the 
same date Mr. Corbitt assisted an interested group in Jack- 
sonville in organizing the Onslow County Historical Society 
with 41 charter members. Mrs. Lillian R. Ray of Hubert was 
elected president and Mrs. John Starling of Hubert was 
elected secretary and treasurer. On October 4 Mr. Corbitt 
spoke at the annual meeting of the Currituck County His- 

142 The North Carolina Historical Review 

torical Society at Shawboro. His subject was "The Publication 
Program of the State Department of Archives and History." 
Approximately 75 persons attended this meeting. The Blooms- 
bury Chapter of the Daughters of the Revolution held their 
October 8 meeting at the Carolina Country Club with Mr. 
Corbitt speaking on "The Publication Program of the De- 
partment of Archives and History." The Mecklenburg His- 
torical Association was organized in Charlotte on October 
18 with Mr. Corbitt as speaker at the meeting. Following the 
program the association was formed with Mr. James A. Sten- 
house as president and Mrs. Georgia Spratt Gray as secretary. 
The association has 160 members. On November 5 the Phi 
Alpha Theta, national honorary history fraternity of the 
University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, had a program 
which featured Mr. Corbitt, who spoke on "The Publishing 
of Historical Research Today," and Mr. Lambert Davis, of 
the University Press, who spoke on "University Presses and 
the Publishing of Doctor's Dissertations." 

Mr. W. S. Tarlton, researcher for the Department of Ar- 
chives and History, represented the Department at the meet- 
ing of the Bertie County Historical Society at the Bertie 
end of the Chowan River Bridge, September 19. Mr. John 
E. Tyler, historian of the group, presided. A picnic lunch was 
enjoyed by the guests and members. A series of markers lo- 
cated at this historic spot include the following: Governor 
Edward Hyde, Eden House, Pollock's Home, and the Na- 
thaniel Batts House, which symbolically marks the home site 
of the first known settler in North Carolina. Mr. Tarlton 
spoke at the unveiling of a marker for Governor John Branch 
at Enfield, September 9. The ceremonies were sponsored by 
the local chapter of the United Daughters of the Confed- 
eracy. On September 17 he talked on "The Restoration of 
Somerset Place" to the LaFayette Chapter, Daughters of 
the Revolution, in Raleigh. As a part of the Junior Historian 
program which is being sponsored by the Department of 
Archives and History he gave a talk to an eighth grade class 
at Needham Broughton High School, Raleigh, September 30, 
on "The Early History of Raleigh." On November 10 he was 

Historical News 143 

the speaker at the meeting of the Scotch Gardeners Club in 
Laurinburg on the topic, "Restoration Projects in North Caro- 
lina," with emphasis on the Somerset Place project. 

Dr. George V. Taylor, assistant professor of European 
History of the University of North Carolina, has returned 
from a year in France as a Fulbright Research Scholar where 
he acquired for the University Library valuable source ma- 
terial and documents on the French Revolution and Na- 
poleonic period. 

Dr. James W. Patton, director of the Southern Historical 
Collection, and Dr. Charles G. Sellers, Jr., assistant professor 
of history at Princeton University, taught in the 1954 summer 
session at the University. 

Dr. Elisha P. Douglass, assistant professor of American 
History, spent the summer of 1954 at Princeton University 
doing research. 

Dr. Carl H. Pegg, professor of modern European History, 
served as civilian consultant specialist in European affairs, 
at the Air Force conference held in Chapel Hill during the 
1954 summer session. 

Mr. Wesley H. Wallace has been appointed assistant pro- 
fessor in radio at the University. 

Dr. Harold A. Bierck has been appointed to the faculty 
of the University of California at Los Angeles for the summer 
session of 1955. 

The department of history and political science at North 
Carolina State College reports the following item: Dr. Philip 
Morrison Rice has been promoted to associate professor. 

On November 21 Dr. L. Walter Seegers, associate profes- 
sor, gave an address on the Mayflower Compact over Station 
WPTF, Raleigh. 

144 The North Carolina Historical Review 

Dr. Preston W. Edsall, head of the department, is general 
chairman of the third annual faculty conference on the state 
of the consolidated University of North Carolina, which will 
be held at State College, March 10-11, with approximately 
180 members of the faculties of the three units of the Univer- 
sity participating. The theme will be "Planning a Foreseeable 
Future/' Dr. Edsall spent several weeks of the past summer 
in England and Holland. 

Dr. Kenneth D. Rabb, assistant professor, conducted a 
circle tour by bus to the Pacific Coast during the summer of 
1954. This tour is taken annually by a large number of public 
school teachers. 

On October 16 Dr. W. Buck Yearns of Wake Forest Col- 
lege, read a paper, "The Peace Movement in the Confederate 
Congress," at a conference of the social studies faculties of 
the Baptist colleges of North Carolina at Mars Hill. The 
meeting was attended by Dr. Percival Perry, Dr. David L. 
Smiley, and Dr. Henry S. Stroupe. Dr. Smiley read a paper, 
"Cassius M. Clay and John G. Fee: A Study in Southern Anti- 
Slavery Thought." He is also the author of "Cassius M. Clay 
and Southern Industrialism", which was published in the 
Filson Club History Quarterly, October, 1954. 

Dr. Henry T. Shanks, dean and professor of history at 
Birmingham-Southern College, was awarded an LL.D. de- 
gree by Wake Forest College in June, 1954. 

Dr. C. Gregg Singer, head of the department of history at 
Salem College, recently resigned and Dr. Philip Africa of 
Warren, Pa., has replaced him. Dr. Africa received his doc- 
torate from the University of Rochester in 1953. Mr. Donald 
M. McCorkle, who has joined the faculty of Salem College as 
assistant professor of musicology, is spending a great deal of 
time in the Moravian Archives cleaning and cataloging the 
music of the early Moravians, both secular and sacred. This 
research program is the largest in the history of American 

Historical News 145 

music and will include the collection of old musical instru- 
ments as well as music. 

The history department at Duke University reports the 
following: Dr. Robert F. Durden published an article, "The 
Prostate State Revisited: James S. Pike and South Carolina 
Reconstruction," in the Journal of Negro History, April, 1954. 

Dr. W. T. Laprade authored the "Report of Committee A 
on Academic Freedom and Tenure," for the spring issue of 
the Bulletin of the American Association of University Pro- 

Dr. Alan K. Manchester spent the summer in South Ameri- 
ca on special service for the United States Department of 
State; in October he addressed the Trinity College Historical 
Society on "Brazil in Transition." The Society had for its 
speaker in November Dr. Boyd C. Shafer, executive secretary 
of the American Historical Association. 

Dr. Robert H. Woody has been recently appointed director 
of graduate studies in the history department. 

Those of the Duke delegation to the Columbia meeting of 
the Southern Historical Association were Dr. E. Malcolm 
Carroll, Dr. Paul H. Clyde, and Dr. Robert F. Durden, and 
Dr. William H. Cartwright, and Dr. William B. Hamilton, 
who also participated in the program. 

Mr. Raymond Esthus and Mr. Robert L. Ganyard, doctoral 
candidates, have this year joined the faculties of Brevard 
College and the University of Houston respectively. 

The social studies department of Appalachian State Teach- 
ers College sends the following items: Mr. John H. Workman 
is one of the 26 teachers from this district who have been 
invited to attend a seminar on money and banking as guests 
of the Federal Reserve Board, Richmond, December 8-11. 

Mr. J. C. Yoder attended the Southeast Division of the 
Association of American Geographers, Chapel Hill, Novem- 
ber 19-20. 

146 The North Carolina Historical Review 

Dr. D. J. Whitener was recently re-elected executive vice 
president of the Southern Appalachian Historical Associa- 
tion, sponsor of "Horn in the West." 

Dr. Ina Woestemeyer Van Noppen and Mr. John Mitchell 
Justice attended the Southern Historical Association meeting 
in Columbia on November 11-13. 

Among the publications of the faculty of the University 
of North Carolina are the following articles and books (not 
including those articles or book reviews that appeared in 
The Review or were published by the Department of Ar- 
chives and History): Dr. Harold A. Bierck's "Spoils, Soils, 
and Skinner," Maryland Historical Magazine (March, June, 
1954); Dr. James L. Godfrey s "The Aftermath of World War 
It," chapter 16 in Setton and Winkler's Great Problems in 
European Civilization (New York: Prentice Hall, 1954); Dr. 
Fletcher M. Green's The Chapel Hill Methodist Church: A 
Centennial History, 1853-1953 (Chapel Hill: Orange Print- 
shop, 1954 ) ; Dr. Frank W. Klingberg's "The Reverend John 
T. Clark: Episcopal Unionist in Virginia," Historical Maga- 
zine of the Episcopal Church ( September, 1954 ) . 

Mr. William S. Powell of the Library of the University of 
North Carolina, published "First Flight," in American Herit- 
age (winter, 1953-1954). 

Dr. Horace H. Cunningham of Elon College had an article, 
"Organization and Administration of the Confederate Medi- 
cal Department," in the Journal of Southern History (July, 

Dr. Sarah M. Lemmon of Meredith College was the author 
of "The Agricultural Policies of Eugene Talmadge," which 
appeared in the Georgia Historical Quarterly, January 1954. 

The University of Kentucky Press announces the establish- 
ment of a fellowship which awards $5,000 to the writer of a 
book-length manuscript which will be based upon some signi- 

Historical News 147 

Scant part of the cultural and historical life of Kentucky. The 
book selected will be published by the University of Ken- 
tucky Press. The award is being offered to attract scholars 
who are interested in this region and was made possible 
through a gift of Mrs. Margaret Voorhies Haggin of New 
York City. Further data may be obtained from the Press at 
Lexington, Kentucky. 

Books received recently include the following: 

Richard Lyle Power, Planting Corn Belt Culture: The Im- 
press of the Upland Southerner and Yankee in the Old 
Northwest (Indianapolis: Indiana Historical Society, 1953); 
Frank E. Vandiver, Southern Historical Papers (Richmond: 
Virginia Historical Society, 1953); South Dakota Historical 
Collections and Report, Volume XXVI (Pierre: South Dakota 
Historical Society, 1953); Bell Irwin Wiley, Fourteen Hun- 
dred and 91 Days in the Confederate Army (Jackson, Tennes- 
see: McCowat-Mercer Press Inc., 1954); Stuart Noblin, The 
Grange in North Carolina, 1929-1954,A Story of Agricultural 
Progress (Greensboro: North Carolina State Grange, 1954); 
Richard Cecil Todd, Confederate Finance (Athens: Univer- 
sity of Georgia Press, 1954); Wilbur R. Jacobs, Indians of 
the Southern Frontier (Columbia: University of South Caro- 
lina Press, 1954 ) ; Aubrey Lee Brooks, Selected Addresses of 
a Southern Lawyer (Chapel Hill: University of North Car- 
olina Press, 1954); Clarence Edwin Carter, The Territorial 
Papers of the United States, Volume XX, The Territory of 
Arkansas, 1825-1829 (Washington: National Archives and 
Records Service, 1954); Alexander Mathis, The Lost Citadel 
(New York: Pageant Press, Inc., 1954); William B. Hessel- 
tine, Dr. J. G. M. Ramsey (Nashville: Tennessee Historical 
Commission, 1954); Ed Kilman and Theon Wright, Hugh 
Roy Cullen, A Story of American Opportunity (New York: 
Prentice Hall, Inc., 1954); Marion Buckley Cox, Glimpse of 
Glory, George Mason of Gunston Hall (Richmond, Virginia: 
Garrett and Massie, Inc., 1954); Claude G. Bowers, Making 
Democracy a Reality: Jefferson, Jackson and Polk ( Memphis, 
Tennessee: Memphis State College Press, 1954); Richard M. 

148 The North Carolina Historical Review 

Cameron, The Rise of Methodism: A Source Book (New 
York: Philosophical Library, 1954); Charles C. Cole, Jr., 
The Social Ideas of the Northern Evangelist, 1826-1860 ( New 
York: Columbia University Press, 1954); Jay B. Hubbell, The 
South in American Literature, 1607-1900 (Durham, North 
Carolina: Duke University Press, 1954); Burke Davis, They 
Called Him Stonewall, A Life of Lientenant General T. J. 
Jackson, C.S.A. (New York: Rinehart and Company, Inc., 
1954); William H. Masterson, William Blount (Baton Rouge: 
Louisiana State University Press, 1954); J. H. Easterby, Col- 
onial Records of South Carolina, Volume IV (Columbia: 
South Carolina Archives Department, 1954); Richard B. 
Harwell, Stonewall Jackson and the Old Stonewall Brigade 
(Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 1954); Max 
Freund, Gustav DreseVs Houston Journal: Adventures in 
North America and Texas, 1837-1841 (Austin: University of 
Texas Press, 1954); Edwin Adams Davis and William Ran- 
som Hogan, The Barber of Natchez (Baton Rouge: Louisiana 
State University Press, 1954); Allen R. Richards, War Labor 
Boards in the Field (Chapel Hill: University of North Car- 
olina Press, 1953); Joseph H. Parks, General Kirby Smith 
C.S.A. (Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 
1954); John Harden, Tar Heel Ghosts (Chapel Hill: Univer- 
sity of North Carolina Press, 1954); and Marshall Fishwick, 
General Lee's Photographer: The Life and Work of Michael 
Miley (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 


Mr. Paul Conkin is at present serving with the armed forces 
in Germany. He received his M.A. from Vanderbilt and was 
working on his doctorate when called into service. 

Dr. William S. Hoffman is chairman of the division of 
social studies at Wiley College, Marshall, Texas. 

Dr. Max L. Heyman, Jr., is on the faculty of the Washing- 
ton Junior High School, Los Angeles, California. 

Dr. Margaret Burr DesChamps is assistant professor of 
history at Agnes Scott College, Decatur, Georgia. 

Mr. Francis B. Dedmond is professor of English and head 
of the Department of English at Gardner- Webb College, 
Boiling Springs, North Carolina. 

Dr. Hugh T. Lefler is a professor of history at the Univer- 
sity of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, North Carolina. 



The North Carolina 
Historical Review 

Volume XXXII April, 1955 Number 2 

By William Frank Zornow 

The Articles of Confederation were often blamed by his- 
torians because of their inability to provide a general policy 
of federal finance or a uniform system of customs duties. 
There might be some justification for criticizing the general 
financial policies of the central government, but there is 
really no justification for condemning the tariff system which 
was in operation throughout the thirteen states during the 
period 1775 to 1789. 

Historians who emphasized the conflicts among state tariff 
policies and insisted that such policies presented a veritable 
maze of rates were guilty of perpetuating a myth which 
probably began when the movement was first launched to 
amend the articles. Historians who came afterward belabored 
this theme without investigating the facts. 

In 1910 Albert Giesecke published a brief study on the 
commercial policies of the country prior to 1789 in which 
he made this significant statement in regard to state tariff 
policies under the confederation: "We must not forget that 
such action [discrimination among the states] was really 
exceptional, for it was usual during the period to exempt 
goods of the growth or produce of any of the United States 
from import duties by the legislating state." 1 

Though the myth was questioned by Giesecke no signifi- 
cant studies were made to explode it once and for all. Merrill 
Jensen in his latest study of American affairs during this 
epoch devoted some pages to this important question in 

1 Albert Giesecke, American Commercial Legislation before 1789 (Phila- 
delphia, 1910), 135. 


152 The North Carolina Historical Review 

which he concurred with Giesecke— too much emphasis had 
been placed upon the differences prevailing among state 
tariff schedules and not enough attention had been paid to 
their similarities. 2 This is the same criticism recent historians 
have made of the traditional treatment of the whole era. The 
day of Fiske's "Critical Period" has run its course. Recent 
writers are re-evaluating the Articles of Confederation in 
terms of their significant achievements rather than their 
failures. Achievements, it might be added, which were even 
more significant in view of the external and internal problems 
confronting the weak central government of the times. 

In evaluating the state tariff policies in existence during 
the revolutionary and confederation period it must be borne 
in mind that they were designed to accomplish four objec- 
tives: (1) revenue, (2) protection, (3) retaliation, (4) regu- 
lation. In most states all four of these objectives were present 
in the tariff legislation enacted, but there were some excep- 
tions. W. C. Fisher in his study of tariff policies before 1789 
says the duties levied can be conveniently grouped under 
four headings: bounties on exports and imports, and duties 
on exports and imports. In addition there were other charges 
such as tonnage fees and pilotage fees which are different 
from impost duties, and drawbacks which are different from 
export bounties. However, all these different types of duties 
were designed to accomplish the four objectives mentioned 
above. 3 

It is the purpose of this paper to examine briefly the tariff 
system which was in operation in North Carolina during the 
period 1775 to 1789 and to see to what extent it adhered to 
or deviated from what might be called a national norm. 

Before the Revolution the colonial legislature had provided 
for small customs duties on wine, rum, and distilled liquors 
brought in from all places except the mother country. 4 It 

2 Merrill Jensen, The New Nation. History of the United States dur- 
ing the Confederation, 1781-1789 (New York, 1950), 338-341. 

3 W. C. Fisher, "American Trade Regulation before 1789," Papers of 
The American Historical Association (New York, 1889), III, 467-493. 

4 Walter Clark (ed.), The State Records of North Carolina (Winston 
and Goldsboro, 1895-1905), XXIII, 268-273, 363-364, 371-375, 392-398; XXV, 
331-333, 361-364. Hereafter referred to as Clark, State Records. 

North Carolina Tariff Policies, 1775-1789 


was not until 1784 that the state legislature found it expedient 
to adopt a general tariff schedule. Presumably, the purpose 
behind its adoption was to secure funds necessary to meet 
the state's quota due the central government and for operat- 
ing expenses. There were three acts adopted in 1784 affecting 
the tariff system in North Carolina. 

By the terms of the legislation of 1784 the following 
schedule of rates went into operation in the state: 

1. gal. 

Jamaica rum 

4 d 

1. gal. 

Any other spiritous liquor. 

3 d 

1. gal. 

Madeira wine 



1. gal. 

Any other kind of wine. 

6 d 

1. gal. 


2 d 

1. gal. 

Malt liquor 

2 d 

bottled Madeira wine (dozen) 



bottled wine, except Madeira 




malt liquor in bottles (dozen) 



Gin (case) 



bottled cider, (dozen) 



1 gal. 


1 d 

1 lb. 

Bohea tea. 

6 d 

1 lb. 

All other kinds of tea. 



1 lb. 


3 d 

1 lb. 

Brown sugar. 

% d 

1 lb. 

Loaf sugar. 

2 d 

1 lb. 

All other kinds of sugar. 

1 d 

1 lb. 


1 d 

1 lb. 


1 d 

There was also an ad valorem duty of 2 per cent on all 
other goods imported into North Carolina. 5 The law was not 
clear as to whether these duties were to apply to goods im- 
ported by land or only to merchandise coming by sea. In 
colonial times there had been some special duties levied 
against goods imported overland from neighboring colonies, 
and so there was a precedent for feeling that such imports 
were entitled to exemption or at least special treatment. 

The legislature soon met this question by adopting another 
law which made these duties collectible on all goods brought 

6 Clark, State Records, XXIV, 549-553, 658-661. 

154 The North Carolina Historical Review 

by land or sea. The only exemption was extended to farmers 
bringing in less than twenty pounds worth of goods for sale. 6 
This supplementary act added a duty of 8 s. on each pack of 
playing cards. 

In 1785 another act imposed a heavy duty of £250 on all 
gambling tables brought into the state. 7 While the following 
year another law was adopted placing a duty on slaves. The 
North Carolina act applied to all slaves imported into the 
state. In some southern states exemption was made on per- 
sons visiting the state or moving there to become permanent 
residents. In some cases the original domicile of the slave 
affected the duty. There were various schedules for slaves 
brought directly from Africa, from other states, or from the 
various European colonial empires in the western hemisphere, 
but in North Carolina there was a single charge for all slaves 
regardless of point of embarkation or reason why they were 
brought to the state. The only variation in the charges de- 
pended on the age of the slave. Every slave under the age of 
seven and over the age of forty was subject to a 50 s. charge. 
Slaves between the ages of seven and twelve, and between 
thirty and forty were dutiable at the rate of five pounds. 
Prime field hands between twelve and thirty were subject to 
a charge of ten pounds. 

In 1786 the anti-slavery sentiment was already evident in 
this act assessing duties on imported slaves, for it declared 
that the "importation of slaves into this State is productive 
of evil consequences and highly impolitic." 8 The importation 
was not prohibited, but it was penalized by a heavy duty on 
field hands. 

The final schedule framed by the legislature before the new 
government went into operation in 1789 was adopted in Jan- 
uary 1787. The 1787 schedule was as follows: 

6 Clark, State Records, XXIV, 655-658. According to these acts setting up 
the tariff system in North Carolina the collector at each port was entitled 
to charge the following fees while collecting the duties: 2 s. for granting 
certificates and for administering oaths, 4 s. for granting permits, and 8 s. 
for taking bonds. 

7 Clark, State Records, XXIV, 731. 

8 Clark, State Records, XXIV, 792-794. 

North Carolina Tariff Policies, 1775-1789 155 

1 gal. Jamaica rum. 6 d. 

1 gal. Spiritous liquors. 5 d. 

1 gal. Molasses. 2 d. 

1 bu. Salt. 6 d. 

Playing cards (per dozen decks) . 12 s. 

The other charges which were made under the schedule 
of 1784 remained the same as far as the enumerated list was 
concerned. However, there were some changes in the ad 
valorem rate. The new schedule provided for an ad valorem 
charge of 5 per cent on all other articles imported into the 
state, except on woolens, linens, bar iron, steel, castings, and 
workman tools for plantations. The ad valorem rate on these 
latter items was increased only one-half per cent to 2/2 per 
cent in all. 9 

The new tariff schedule of 1787 marked the advent of 
some important developments in this type of legislation in 
North Carolina. Attention has already been called to the 
fact that protectionism was one of the elements present in 
the tariff policies of the states even during the period of 
the Articles of Confederation. This was particularly true in 
the northern states, where protection was frankly acknowl- 
edged in many of the tariff enactments, but in North Caro- 
lina it was almost totally disregarded. The only modest 
attempt to encourage domestic industry was the granting of 
a 2 d. per gallon drawback on all molasses distilled within 
the state. 

By granting special duties of 2/2 per cent ad valorem in- 
stead of 5 per cent on the most urgently needed items— iron, 
tools, and clothes for slaves, the legislature was encouraging 
continued importation from abroad and discouraging com- 
pletely any domestic manufacture of these goods. The North 
Carolinians thought of their state primarily as an exporting 
state. They wanted to sell their tobacco and other products 
abroad and purchase tools and needed items in the cheaper 
European market. This made the notion of protection repug- 
nant to their thinking. Many southern states experimented 
with a mild form of protection before 1789, but North 
Carolina did not. 

Clark, State Records, 798-802. 

156 The North Carolina Historical Review 

One of the most noticeable developments before the estab- 
lishment of the constitutional government in 1789 was the 
fact that the states were cooperating to unify their tariff 
systems and to admit the goods produced or manufactured 
in the United States duty free. North Carolina fell in line 
with this general trend throughout the other states. 

This willingness to grant concessions to American pro- 
duced goods first made its appearance in the tariff legislation 
of 1785. This act provided that no duties were to be paid 
on goods which were manufactured in the states out of ma- 
terials grown in the United States, but it did insist that 
foreign goods imported in America bottoms were dutiable. 
There had been a question raised as to whether or not Ameri- 
can ships made free goods, but the legislature decided this 
was not the case. 10 

The act of 1787 carried this principle that American pro- 
duced goods were duty free even further. This law provided 
that arms, ammunition, and all goods grown, produced, or 
manufactured in the United States were exempt from all 
charges. No longer was the qualifying feature of the 1785 
act present, which limited this exemption only to goods man- 
ufactured in America out of native raw materials. 

In the tariff legislation of this period one can also see some 
evidence of discrimination and retaliation aimed particularly 
at the British. This policy grew out of the English attitude 
toward American commerce after the war. American mer- 
chants had long been dependent upon the triangular trade 
involving their own ports, and those of Europe and the West 
Indies. It was the only way Americans could earn the money 
necessary to purchase products abroad. On July 2, 1783, the 
British government adopted an Order in Council which clos- 
ed the West Indian ports to American ships. Naturally this 
hurt the American states for they were drained of specie in 
order to pay for the products they continued to buy from 
England which formerly had been paid for by exports to the 
Indies. The Americans were quick to accuse the British of 
trying to destroy their trade, but actually the principal British 

10 Clark, State Records, XXIV, 718-720. 

North Carolina Tariff Policies, 1775-1789 157 

motive in adopting this course was that under the mercantile 
system they were compelled to regard the United States as 
outside the empire and to treat them as alien states in matters 
of colonial trade. 

The law of 1785 which exempted American goods from all 
duty if they were manufactured in the United States from 
native products also contained a provision that an additional 
duty of 20 per cent was to be collected on all goods imported 
in vessels owned in whole or in part by foreigners whose 
nations had no treaty of commerce. The states were willing 
in most cases to assist Congress in this way in order to bring 
various European states to terms and to get them to conclude 
commercial conventions. There was also discrimination in the 
matter of tonnage fees charged vessels owned by non-treaty 
signing states, but this will be discussed in another connec- 
tion. 11 This same act of 1785 declared that instead of the 
2 per cent ad valorem duty applying on all salt it would 
not be collected on salt brought into the state in American 
ships or foreign ships whose country had commercial treaties 
with the United States. In this case the duty was cut to 2 d. 
per bushel. 

The protection and fostering of native industry did not 
play as important a part in the tariff systems of the southern 
states as it did in the North. As was said before, North Caro- 
lina virtually ignored its domestic industries. Although there 
were hardly any tariff schedules adopted in North Carolina 
during this period which could have been regarded as pro- 
tective, there were other ways that industry could be fostered. 
An old colonial device had been the granting of export/im- 
port bounties. North Carolina provided for financial grants to 
all persons who could produce hemp, flax, potash, and pearl 
ash. 12 Throughout the states this granting of bounties con- 
tinued to the revolutionary period, but there was a noticeable 
tendency to discontinue this practice when the war began. 
The practice was not revived afterward. The legislators 
found they could achieve the same desired ends by dis- 

u Clark, State Records, XXIV, 718-720. 

u Clark, State Records, XXIII, 613-614, 923-924. 

158 The North Carolina Historical Review 

couraging the importation of European products by protec- 
tive tariffs rather than direct financial aid. The last act in 
North Carolina was passed in 1773 for three years. In 1776 
it was allowed to lapse, and there apparently were no efforts 
to revive the granting of bounties. 

In addition to the specified duties on enumerated goods 
and the charges on unenumerated items, the importer and 
shipper were also subjected to a variety of additional charges 
in each state which often became particularly burdensome. 
This legislation was designed to achieve at least three of 
the four objectives: revenue, retaliation, and regulation. 
There were charges for wharfage, storage, pilotage, light- 
houses, hospitals, and on the tonnage of each vessel. Some 
of these charges were levied against all ships (usually 
exempting coasters) entering the harbors of the state, but 
some were directed primarily against ships belonging to non- 
residents of the state. This latter condition caused much ill- 
feeling. Shortly before the calling of the Annapolis conven- 
tion, Tench Coxe of Pennsylvania wrote that there were 
many grievances against the state commercial practices, and 
he listed them as follows: 

1. duty of tonnage on vessels built and belonging to the citizens 
of the other states, was greater than that imposed on vessels 
belonging to the citizens of the states enacting the law, and equal 
in some instances to the tonnage laid upon most of the foreign 
nations that have a commercial intercourse with America. 

2. The duties imposed upon goods imported in vessels built in or 
belonging to other parts of the Union, were greater than those 
laid on goods imported in vessels belonging to the enacting state. 

3. That goods of the growth, product, and manufacture of the 
other states in the Union, were charged with high duties upon 
importation into the enacting state, as great, in many cases, as 
those imposed on foreign articles of the same kind. 13 

Some of Coxe's objections were unwarranted. The third 
was entirely untrue. North Carolina, along with the other 
states, was admitting American grown, produced, and manu- 
factured goods duty free by 1786. However, there was some 

"Tench Coxe to Edmund Randolph, James Madison, St. George Tucker, 
September 13, 1786, in Calendar of Virginia State Papers (Richmond, 
1875-1893), IV, 168-169. 

North Carolina Tariff Policies, 1775-1789 159 

truth in the first two objections to the current practices. In 
some states there were higher tonnage fees imposed upon 
ships owned by non-residents of the enacting state than 
applied on ships owned by its own citizens. There were also 
a few cases where duties on goods imported in ships owned 
by citizens of the enacting state were lower than the duties 
on other goods brought in ships owned by foreigners or 
residents of the other states. 

In North Carolina all incoming vessels were subject to 
pilotage fees which were based on a sliding scale depending 
on the amount of water drawn by the ship. An act of 1764 
set up a basic schedule of fees. Ships drawing six feet or less 
of water paid a pilot fee of two pounds, and this rate was 
increased until ships drawing seventeen feet paid a charge of 
eight pounds. There is only one law passed during the years 
1775-1789 affecting the pilotage fees, and this was enacted 
in 1784. The basic charges were increased because of the 
rising living costs. 14 These fees were collected from every 
ship whether owned by residents or by non-residents of North 

Every incoming ship was also required to pay a tonnage 
duty. Tonnage duties were in existence from the earliest 
colonial times when it was the custom for each ship to hand 
over a certain amount of powder and shot for each ton bur- 
den. These original payments in powder were commuted to 
cash payments later, and the money was used to maintain 
the port facilities, fortifications, and sailor hospitals, and to 
pay the salaries of officials. 

In North Carolina there were two charges of this type: a 
regular fee which depended on the tonnage of the ship, and 
a second charge of a flat fee which was levied on all ships 
to pay the fee for entering and clearing the port. 

An early act of 1756 provided for payments of 2 s. per ton 
on all ships entering the harbors of the colony, and this was 
raised to 5 s. in 1781. 15 According to the latter act if a ship 
brought arms it was to receive an exemption equivalent to 

"Clark, State Records, XXIII, 650-654; XXIV, 586-592. 
M Clark, State Records, XXIII, 467-568: XXIV, 380-381. 

160 The North Carolina Historical Review 

the duty per ton for each three Spanish dollars worth of 
such cargo in its hold. An increase of 6 d. per ton was allowed 
in 1784 to raise funds to build a lighthouse. 16 

The inaccuracy of Coxe's accusations as far as North Caro- 
lina was concerned is evident in the tonnage legislation of 
1785 which provided for a fee of 3 d. per ton on all vessels 
over sixty tons which were owned by Americans or foreigners 
whose countries had commercial treaties with Congress. If 
no treaty existed, the foreign ship was to pay 5 s. per ton. 
Here we have an excellent example of the type of discrimi- 
nation which was so common in state tariff legislation of the 
period as they tried to cooperate with the government to get 
recalcitrant foreign states to conclude treaties of commerce. 17 

The final act which was passed by the legislature before 
the new constitution went into effect certainly refuted Coxe's 
charges. Every foreign ship over twenty tons burden was 
subject to a 6 d. per ton duty, while ships from every state 
(including North Carolina) paid 3 d. per ton. 18 The proceeds 
collected were to be used for the construction of a lighthouse 
at Ocracoke Island. The legislature was making every effort 
to admit other American ships into North Carolina ports on 
a basis of equality with locally owned vessels, and to favor 
them over European ships. 

The tonnage fees changed considerably between the acts 
of 1781 and 1785, and a new type of legislation was intro- 
duced by the assembly in a law of 1784 providing for a 
schedule of fees payable to the naval officers of each port 
for entering and clearing a vessel. These fees were rather 
large considering the tonnage charges already being levied 
in the state. 19 Another act of 1789 levied a special fee of one 
shilling per capita on every officer and member of the crew 
of any vessel entering a state port. 20 The money collected by 

16 Clark, State Records, XXIV, 586-592. 
"Clark, State Records, XXIV, 718-720. 

18 Clark, State Records, XXV, 54-55. Ships under twenty tons and small 
vessels engaged in coasting trade were exempt from charges. 

19 Clark, State Records, XXIV, 553-556. The schedule was as follows: 8 s. 
for entering and clearing all undecked ships; 15 s. for decked vessels under 
20 tons; 30 s. for ships from 20 to 60 tons; and 40 s. for all vessels over 
60 tons. 

20 Clark, State Records, XXV, 56-57, 81-82. 

North Carolina Tariff Policies, 1775-1789 161 

this latter act was to be put into a special fund for the care 
of sick and indigent sailors. These special fees were payable 
by all ships entering the state ports. 

Various items imported into or exported from each colony 
and state were subject to inspection and storage charges. 
This was a system prevailing in all the colonies and it was 
continued during the state period. As a matter of fact, the 
inspections were increased, and the legislation governing the 
inspection and certification of imports and exports became 
more numerous during the 1780's. European purchasers often 
preferred to obtain American products. The supervision of 
exports raised their reputation in foreign markets. The wide 
acceptance of inspection laws and the height to which the 
fees sometimes went constituted these charges as an im- 
portant type of commercial regulation. 

In North Carolina various items were subject to intensive 
inspection. However, there were no inspection fees on im- 
ported commodities, but the fees charged applied only to 
items for export. Flax, hemp, pork, beef, rice, flour, butter, 
tar, pitch, turpentine, staves, heading, shingles, lumber, tan- 
ned leather, deer skin, and indigo were all on the inspection 
list as well as tobacco during the colonial period. Most of the 
inspection legislation on the statute books applied, of course, 
to the largest export— tobacco. After the revolution the inspec- 
tion fee for a cask of tobacco was raised to 8 s, and it ap- 
parently remained substantially unchanged during the entire 
period. 21 Laws adopted in 1784 established the following 
schedule of fees for the inspection of various items: 22 

1 Cask of beef or pork. 8 d. 

1 Barrel or cask of rice, butter, 

flour, or fish. 8 d. 

1 Barrel of tar. 2 d. 

1 Barrel of pitch or turpentine. 3 d. 

1 Barrel of flax 1 s. 

if cleaning necessary 3 s. 

100 Barrel staves. 3 d. 

1000 Shingles. 1 s. 

1000 Feet of cut lumber. 1 s. 

21 Clark, State Records, XXIV, 104-109. 

22 Clark, State Records, XXIV, 580-586, 658-661. 

162 The North Carolina Historical Review 

The granting of drawbacks and export duties were other 
aspects of early tariff legislation which should be mentioned. 
There was a drawback of 2 d. per gallon granted on all im- 
ported molasses distilled in the state, which was designed by 
the legislature to encourage local distilleries. It was not until 
1785 that the assembly acted on the matter of goods landed 
in North Carolina for re-export. Such goods were subject to 
the customary charges, but the shipper was given credit for 
the duties paid if the goods were re-exported in their original 
cask or container within a three month period. 23 There were 
no export duties in North Carolina during this period, al- 
though other southern states such as Maryland and Virginia 
experimented with this type of duty as a means of raising 
revenue. There had been a small export duty on deerskins in 
North Carolina in the colonial period, but despite this pre- 
cedent the legislature failed to try this means of augmenting 
the state's income. Export duties were no longer popular in 
most states, and North Carolina was merely following the 
national trend in this respect. 

When examining the tariff legislation of North Carolina 
one is impressed by the fact that there was so little of it. In 
many states the tariff enactments were quite numerous, but 
not so in North Carolina. Of all the southern states Georgia 
and North Carolina had the least legislation of this type. 
The schedules were short and were confined primarily to 
spiritous and malt liquors, coffee, sugar, and tea. Protec- 
tionism was virtually non-existent. There was also very little 
regulation of shipping in North Carolina, and the fees were 
kept to a minimum number when compared to those in use 
in other states. There is not a single example of state inter- 
ference to prohibit exports during this period, whereas in 
other states, particularly during the war, the legislatures in- 
terfered often to prevent exportation of badly needed com- 
modities or to proclaim embargoes. Yet some similarity may 
be noted between the tariff system in North Carolina and 
those developing in other states. 

23 Clark, State Records, XXIV, 718-720, 798-802. 

North Carolina Tariff Policies, 1775-1789 163 

By 1789 North Carolina, like her sister states, was ad- 
mitting American products duty free, was granting special 
consideration to American ships as far as tonnage charges 
were concerned, and was treating shippers from other states 
the same as her own merchants. Any discrimination that is 
evident in North Carolina was directed against foreign states 
which did not conclude a treaty with the United States. The 
spirit of cooperation in North Carolina was becoming quite 
evident, and it is apparent not only in dealings with other 
states but in those with the central government as well. 

On February 3, 1781, Congress proposed to levy a special 5 
per cent ad valorem duty on imports and requested each state 
legislature to act on this matter. 24 The North Carolina legisla- 
ture responded during the same year and granted Congress 
the right to levy the 5 per cent impost on all imports and on 
all prizes, but with the provision that it was not to go into 
effect until the other states had granted similar powers. 25 

Every state except Rhode Island eventually acceded to the 
request, but before sufficient pressure could be applied on this 
state to gain its assent, a counter movement set in. On De- 
cember 24, 1782, Virginia repealed its law empowering Con- 
gress to enact the 5 per cent impost on the ground that 
Rhode Island's failure to comply invalidated the grant. With- 
in a short time other states followed suit, and the impost 
scheme of 1781 was lost. 

North Carolina repealed her grant in 1783. 26 On April 18, 

1783, Congress made another attempt to have the states ap- 
prove a grant of duties on enumerated articles for twenty-five 
years as well as a special ad valorem duty of five per cent on 
other items and on all prizes. This was sent to the states for 
their approval. 27 The North Carolina legislature complied in 

1784, but once again this special grant to Congress was lost 
because New York failed to act. 28 

24 W. C. Ford, and others, (eds.), The Journal of the Continental Congress 
(Washington, 1904-1937), XIX, 102, 112-113. Hereafter referred to as 
Ford, Journals of the Continental Congress. 

25 Clark, State Records, XXIV, 405-406. 

26 Clark, State Records, XXIV, 510. 

27 Ford, Journals of Continental Congress, XXIV, 257-261. 

28 Clark, State Records, XXIV, 547-549. 

164 The North Carolina Historical Review 

On April 30, 1784, Congress resolved that it should be 
given power for fifteen years to prohibit any goods, wares, or 
merchandize from being imported into or exported from any 
state in vessels belonging to or navigated by the subjects of 
any power with which there was no treaty of commerce. The 
assent of nine states was necessary for this to go into effect, 
but when the North Carolina legislature acted on this request 
it attached the qualification that its law would not become 
effective until all the states passed similar legislation. A con- 
gressional committee reported on March 3, 1786, that Dela- 
ware, South Carolina, and Georgia had not passed any acts 
to grant Congress this power, and that New Hampshire, 
Rhode Island, and North Carolina had passed laws which 
were not conformable to the requests of Congress. These 
states were urged to comply at once, but the provision never 
went into operation before the new government was es- 
tablished. 29 

It is significant that all but one of the states were willing 
to cooperate with Congress in granting it the special power 
to levy duties requested in 1781 and 1783. The impost resolu- 
tion of 1783 with its long enumerated list as well as ad val- 
orem duty stimulated the tendency in most states to agree 
on a basic enumerated list, but the individual rates on items 
continued to vary and were determined by local considera- 
tions. Nevertheless, there was a great deal of harmony pre- 
vailing. North Carolina and the other states were compelled 
long before 1789 to agree on a general tariff policy which 
was coming to prevail everywhere. By 1789 variation in rates 
and systems was the exception rather than the rule. 

29 Ford, Journals of Continental Congress, XXX, 93. 

By Margaret Burr DesChamps 

John Chavis, accomplished free Negro, has long been rec- 
ognized as a teacher of children of prominent white families 
in Raleigh. 1 He ought also to be known as a preacher to 
whites. Prior to the opening of his school about 1808, Chavis 
was licensed as a "probationer for the holy ministry" by Lex- 
ington Presbytery in Virginia. 2 Because he served the Gen- 
eral Assembly of the Presbyterian Church from 1801 to 1807 
as a missionary to slaves in the upper South, 3 it has been as- 
sumed that his ministry was chiefly to Negroes. 

Although sent by the church to serve his own race, Chavis 
preached to far more whites than Negroes on his missionary 
tours. In May, 1803, the clerk of the Standing Committee of 
Missions wrote the following summary of Chavis's travels 
during the past year for presentation to the General As- 

Mr. John Chavis introduces his narrative by reminding the 
Assembly, that at the time of making his former report three 
months of the time for which he had been engaged were un- 
expired ; he has since completed that tour of duty by visiting as a 
missionary the western parts of Virginia, which appear to pre- 
sent natural obstacles that require no small share of zeal and 
perserverance to surmount them. He met with very friendly 
receptions and great kindness from the people in those parts, 
who seem to have attended the preaching of the word in as great 
numbers as could reasonably have been expected, — to have heard 
it gladly, and in some instances profitably. 

1 The most scholarly account of Chavis's life is Edgar W. Knight's 
"Notes on John Chavis," North Carolina Historical Review, VII (July, 
1930), 326-345. Research for this paper was done while the writer was 
Elizabeth Avery Colton fellow of the American Association of Univer- 
sity Women, 1951-1952. 

""Minutes of Lexington Presbytery, 1800-1810," November 19, 1800. 
Manuscript in Union Theological Seminary, Richmond, Virginia. Here- 
after referred to as "Minutes of Lexington Presbytery, 1800-1810." 

* Minutes of the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church in the 
United States of America, A.D. 1789 to 1820 Inclusive (Philadelphia, 
1867), 229, passim. Hereafter referred to as Minutes of the General As- 



The North Carolina Historical Review 

The following statement is made by the Committee from Mr. 
Chavis's Journal, to give the Assembly a view of the numbers 
and proportion of blacks who attended Divine service; 
In Bedford County about 150 No blacks are mentioned 
persons attended, 

Rock Bridge Ditto 100 Ditto 

Lexington Ditto 400 100, a revival of religion here 

Falling Spring 50 none mentioned 

Kanawah 200 30 

Ditto meeting house 30 

Kanford's 30. . . .none 

Morris's 30 (mentions an old Aff rican 

woman as being much affected 
and weeping.) 

Johnson's 50. . . . none mentioned 

Kanawah Court House . . .150. . . .50 

George Lee's 100. . . .none mentioned, a revival of 

religion among the Baptists. 
Kanawah River about .... 80 person attended 

no blacks mentioned 

Ditto 60 Ditto 

Coal River 200 .... 20 Here one opposer of re- 
ligion was made to fall and 
weep. He never saw a people 
more desirous to be instructed. 
Kanawah Courthouse ...100.... 15 

E.Hughes's 180.... 5 

Baptist meeting house) 

in Green Briar County. . .200. . . .20 (numbers appeared to be 

(deeply imprest: he was 
strongly solicited to settle 

Lewisburgh 250 50 

Botetourt County . . .200 50 

Rockbridge Ditto — 

Lebanon 200 80 

In the tour he preached 23 sermons, and received $7.74. 
He began his mission under the appointment of last year, on 
the 18th of July, and continued in it for 7 months and 3 weeks, 
travelling in the Counties of Mecklinburg, Lunenburg, and Not- 
toway in Virginia ; and in Granville, Person, Wake, Warren, 
Orange, Chatham, Randolph, and Caswell, in North Carolina. 
In this tour he preached 68 times, and delivered 8 exhortations ; 
attended several religious societies, assisted twice in the ad- 
ministration of the Lord's Supper, and collected $1.86. He was 
several times prevented from preaching, by bodily indisposition. 

John Chavis As A Preacher To Whites 167 

The proportion of Blacks who attended was greater than on 
his former route, as appears from the following statement of the 
numbers of his congregations on different occasions, Vizt, 

Mecklinburg persons 250 . 

Person 500 

Ditto 35 

Ditto 40 

Mecklinburg 800 

Lunenburg 150 

Mecklinburg persons 50 

Bluestone 200 

Ditto 150 

New Bethel 300 

Person 200 

Wake 600 

Person 250 

Warren 30 

Granville 250 

Gillarns Meeting House 300 

Granvill 150 

Chatham 450 

Ditto 300 

Ditto 70, 

Ditto 400 

Granville 30, 

Caswell 200 

Granville 400 

Cullon's, a Baptist) 
Meetinghouse ) 150 

Poplar Creek 250 

Granville 500 

So well did the white population attend his services that 
Presbyterian leaders soon came to regard Chavis's popularity 
as a problem. While their attitude is more clearly revealed 
in the unpublished records of the Committee of Missions, 
some indication of their feeling is found in the published 
proceedings of the General Assembly of 1805. At that meet- 
ing the Synod of Virginia reported that "Mr. Chavis, a mis- 
sionary to the blacks, itinerated in several counties in the 

4 "Minutes of the Standing Committee of Missions, 1802-1807," May 21, 
1803. Manuscript in Board of National Missions of the Presbyterian 
Church, U. S. A., New York City. Hereafter referred to as "Minutes of 
the Standing Committee on Missions, 1802-1807." The minutes give only 
the clerk's condensation of Chavis's report rather than the original. 

. . . . Blacks 


























180 4 

168 The North Carolina Historical Review 

south parts of the State; but owing to some peculiar circum- 
stances stated in his journal, his mission was not attended 
with any considerable success." No hint was given in the 
printed records as to the "peculiar circumstances, 5 " and before 
the Assembly adjourned Chavis was re-appointed as a mis- 
sionary. However, it should be noted that the travel directions 
to the Negro preacher for another year instructed him to 
"employ himself chiefly among the blacks and people of 
colour." 5 

The manuscript minutes of the Committee of Missions 
show why these explicit directions were given to Chavis and 
throw some light on the difficulties of his previous mission. 
Apparently, Chavis found that the slaves preferred the emo- 
tional and illiterate exhortation of a fellow bondsman to the 
sermon of a man of education and dignity; hence, he tended 
to preach to whites rather than to his own race. As he had 
been employed to minister to Negroes, a few Presbyterians 
regarded his misssionary activities as something less than 
successful. They "intimated . . . that Mr. Chavis was not 
properly attentive to the Instruction of the Blacks, which 
was the primary object of his Mission." The chairman of 
the Committee of Missions promised to question Chavis about 
the matter so that he might "be stimulated to greater fidelity 
in [the] future" or given "an opportunity for his own vindi- 
cation." 6 

Before the General Assembly met again Chavis replied in 
writing to the charge of neglecting his own race to preach 
to the white population. Unfortunately his letter was not pre- 
served and no further mention of the affair occurs in the 
minutes of the Committee. 7 But the preacher evidently ex- 
plained his conduct to the complete satisfaction of the Com- 
mittee and the Assembly, for in 1806 he was appointed as 
missionary "among the blacks and free people of colour in 
Maryland, if practicable, otherwise at his discretion." 8 Thus 

5 Minutes of the General Assembly, 323 4 344. 

6 "Minutes of the Standing Committee of Missions, 1802-1807," May 17, 

'"Minutes of the Standing Committee of Missions, 1802-1807." The 
minutes state that the letter was received, but it was not copied into the 

8 Minutes of the General Assembly, 367. 

John Chavis As A Preacher To Whites 169 

he won the privilege of preaching to whites with whom he 
was more congenial and from whom he doubtless received 
more attention. 

As Chavis's missionary reports show, the Great Revival was 
sweeping the South Atlantic states in the years that he was 
traveling for the General Assembly. Since he rode and preach- 
ed in parts of North Carolina and Virginia where the religious 
fervor was greatest, he was in an excellent position to ob- 
serve and describe it. From him people received information 
about the spiritual awakening, which many seem to have 
regarded as the beginning of the millenium, and passed it 
on in their letters to friends and relatives. It is regrettable 
that writers did nothing more than mention Chavis's name, 
but the casual manner in which the observations of the free 
Negro were introduced into letters indicates that he was 
a well known and acceptable visitor even to the lady of the 

In January, 1802, Ann Smith, daughter of Samuel Smith 
in Granville County, North Carolina, described "The Great 
Revival of Religion about the Harfields [Hawfields]" for 
her relatives in South Carolina. Her information came from 
"Mr. Chavis and Uncle Wm. Webb . . . who have been at 
the Meetings where this great work was going forward." 9 
Later in the same year, Moses Hoge, Presbyterian minister 
in Shepherdstown, Virginia, and afterwards president of 
Hampden-Sydney College, wrote: "By Mr. J. Chavis I have 
had some account of the work going on in Mr. Wilson's Con- 
gregations." 10 Association with the Smiths and the Hoges 
shows that Chavis's contacts were with the most prominent 
of Presbyterian families. 

8 Ann Smith to Polly Williamson, January 16, 1802, in the Williamson 
Papers, Presbyterian Historical Society, Philadelphia. A sketch of Samuel 
Smith, Presbyterian layman who migrated from Essex County, Virginia, 
to Granville County in the early 1760's to occupy land granted by the 
Earl of Granville, can be found in the Samuel Smith Downey Papers, 
Duke University library. For information on William Webb, Presbyterian 
layman at Tar River, see G. C. Shaw, John Chavis, 1763-1838 (Bingham- 
ton, 1931), 19-20. Hereafter referred to as Shaw, John Chavis. 

10 Moses Hoge to James Hoge, July 20, 1802, in Hoge Collection, Histori- 
cal Foundation of the Presbyterian and Reformed Churches, Montreat, 
N. C William Wilson was pastor of the Presbyterian Church in Augusta, 
Virginia. A history of the Hoge family is found in Peyton H. Hoge, Moses 
Drury Hoge (Richmond, 1899), 1-29. 

170 The North Carolina Historical Review 

Chavis' last preaching mission for the General Assembly 
was performed in 1807. 11 After that time his chief occupation 
was his school in Raleigh. Yet, he continued to preach not 
only from the pulpit, but also in what he described as "private 
and public conversations with my neighbors." 12 In 1824 he 
proposed to supply the pulpit of Old Providence, an inter- 
denominational church near Oxford which had originally 
been sponsored by his Presbyterian friend William Webb. 
It was in the area of North Carolina where Chavis had spent 
much of his time at the turn of the century, and where, ac- 
cording to some accounts, he had been born and raised. 
Doubtless, he looked forward to pleasant weekends of visit- 
ing and worshipping with old friends. But the liberalism 
which followed the Revolution and for a time characterized 
the Great Revival had waned. Chavis, who twenty years 
earlier had moved freely among the most prominent Gran- 
ville families, failed to find "such familiar and hospitable 
entertainment as was desired and necessary" and "discon- 
tinued his visits." 13 

The experience with the members of Old Providence 
Church was a foretaste of a more bitter lot which awaited 
the free Negro. In 1831 Chavis, like the rest of his race, was 
forbidden by the state legislature to preach at all. When he 
sought advice from his friends in Orange Presbytery, who 
had taken him under their care when he moved from Vir- 
ginia to North Carolina in 1805, they recommended that he 
abide by the law. 14 

A feeble old man with no means of support, Chavis then 
applied to the presbytery for financial aid. 15 Among the mem- 
bers of a committee appointed to assume responsibility in 
the care of the old man and his wife were Samuel Smith 

n Minutes of the General Assembly, 391. 

12 North Carolina Presbyterian, December 27, 1882. 

18 Shaw, John Chavis, 21-22, publishes the records of the church which 
relate to Chavis. 

14 "Minutes of Orange Presbytery, 1831-1836," April 18, 1832, manuscript 
in Historical Foundation of the Presbyterian and Reformed Churches. 
Hereafter referred to as "Minutes of Orange Presbytery, 1831-1836." 

16 The presbytery decided to give Chavis fifty dollars annually as long 
as he lived, and apparently paid that amount to him until he died in 1838. 
"Minutes of Orange Presbytery, 1831-1836, 1836-1846," September 5, 
1832, passim. 

John Chavis As A Preacher To Whites 171 

Downey, Presbyterian elder who was a grandson of Samuel 
Smith, and William McPheeters, minister in Raleigh. Both 
men had probably known John Chavis for more than thirty 
years, 16 and their interest in his welfare doubtless led to 
their appointment to the committee. A letter written by 
McPheeters to Downey in 1834 1T shows Chavis's pitiful plight 
at that time, and also serves as a commentary on the change 
which had taken place in the whites' attitude toward the 
free Negro preacher. With the decline of liberalism, paternal- 
ism replaced the spirit of equalitarianism which had earlier 
characterized the Presbyterians' relationships with Chavis. 

September 3, 1834 
Dear Sir, 

I have lately received two letters from our Old Friend John 

In the 1st he makes known to me his difficulties, distresses, 
and wants - Says that he is a miserable man - Old and infirm - 
his wife a dying - or at least on her death-bed - in want of the 
necessaries of life - and without money to procure them. 

In the 2nd he say[s] that he had applied to you (lately, I 
suppose,) for some money - having understood that you had 
some for him in your hands - and that the messenger, on his re- 
turn, stated that you had sent the money over to me, &c 

If any money has been forwarded to me, I have not as yet 
received it - But probably the money referred to, as sent to me, 
was that which you put into my hands last year. 

At the last meeting of Presbytery the following minute was 
adopted - "Resolved, that the Committee hitherto appointed in 
the case of Mr. Chavis, be directed to inquire into his situation, 
and make such provision for him as his necessities may require" 

Yourself and Dr. Graham are members of the Committee - 
who the others are I dont recollect - 

In Raleigh I collected for Mr Chavis in October or November 
last about $20 - This sum, with what you put into my hands, 
was all delivered over to him last year - of the way in which it 
was expended by him he gave account to Presbytery at the last 

19 For Chavis's relations with Downey see Shaw, John Chavis, 30. Chavis 
and McPheeters presented themselves as candidates for the ministry at 
the fall session of Lexington Presbytery in 1799. See "Minutes of Lexing- 
ton Presbytery, 1794-1800," October 18, 19, 1799. Manuscript in Union 
Theological Seminary, Richmond, Va. Subsequent minutes show that Chavis 
was licensed on November 19, 1800, and McPheeters not until April 18,1802. 

17 This letter is in the Samuel Smith Downey Papers, Duke University 

172 The North Carolina Historical Review 

meeting - Presbytery then, with the view of providing for him 
during the present year, passed the Resolution above recited - 
I think it will require in advance, on the part of Presbytery, 
[the amount] of 5 dollars a month - or 60 dollars a year to sup- 
port the Old Man and his Wife - If this sum cant be got with 
some degree of certainty and punctuality, I see no other chance 
for him but the Poor House - Please to write to Mr. Chavis and 
give him any information you may possess - 

I am yours &c 
Wm McPheeters 

Thus unpublished records of the Presbyterian Church, as 
well as letters written by its members, show that while serv- 
ing as a missionary in North Carolina and Virginia, John 
Chavis preached to and moved freely among white Presby- 
terians. Even after teaching became his chief occupation he 
continued to minister to them. In the last years of his life, 
when he was unable to earn his livelihood, it was to these 
old friends that he turned for aid. His relationships with 
them illustrate both the early promise and the ultimate trag- 
edy of his own career and that of other free Negroes of his 



By Christopher Crittenden 

The fifty-fourth annual session of the State Literary and 
Historical Association, one of the most successful ever con- 
ducted, was held at the Sir Walter Hotel in Raleigh, Decem- 
ber 3, 1954. Following the morning business meeting, Dr. 
Paul Murray of Greenville spoke on "The North Carolina 
Historical Review - The First Thirty Years"; Mr. Harry 
L. Golden of Charlotte talked on "The Jewish People of North 
Carolina"; and Mr. Robert Mason of Sanford reviewed North 
Carolina fiction of the year. The R. D. W. Connor, Roanoke- 
Chowan, and American Association of University Women 
awards were then announced. At the luncheon meeting Dr. 
Leonard Hurley reviewed North Carolina non-fiction of the 
year. At the annual dinner Mrs. Inglis Fletcher delivered 
an informal presidential address. In the evening Dr. Louis B. 
Wright spoke on "Elizabethan Politics and Colonial Enter- 
prise," and the Mayflower and Sir Walter Raleigh awards 
were announced. 1 All the papers presented at the various 
meetings are reproduced in the pages that follow. The pres- 
idential address, which was not written is necessarily omitted. 

1 For details regarding the meetings and different awards, see The North 
Carolina Historical Review, XXXII (1955), 135-136. 



The North Carolina Historical Review, 


By Paul Murray 

Thirty years are a short period in the life history of a 
people. In like manner, the thirty annual volumes of The 
North Carolina Historical Review, 1924-1953, are but a 
small segment of the total picture of North Carolina's cul- 
tural growth. It is only when one attempts to comprehend 
such a segment of our cultural heritage that he realizes the 
immensity of the task of the serious historian who is not satis- 
fied with the glittering generalities too often bandied about 
in standard treatises on cultural history. To avoid falling 
into such a pit it is here proposed that this study be limited 
to three phases of recent historiography: (1) a characteriza- 
tion of history writing concerning North Carolina, 1886-1929; 
( 2 ) the founding of the Review; ( 3 ) a summary analysis of 
the content of the Review, 1924-1953, together with an eval- 
uation of its major effects on North Carolina history. 

The foundations of the literary structure of North Caro- 
lina history were laid during the first half of the nineteenth 
century in the writings of Hugh Williamson, Francois Xavier 
Martin, Francis Lister Hawks, and John Hill Wheeler. The 
framework of that structure was reared during the forty- 
three years which elapsed between the appearance of the 
first volume of The Colonial Records from the hand of Wil- 
liam Lawrence Saunders in 1886 to the publication of Robert 
Digges Wimberley Connor's North Carolina: Rebuilding an 
Ancient Commonwealth in 1929. Many and able were the 
skilled artisans whose trademarks are stamped on every beam, 
joint, and truss in that edifice. Their contributions are so clear 
and distinct that any attempt at listing by one person must 

the third phase of this study was presented in the paper 
read to the State Literary and Historical Association, De- 
cember 3, 1954. 


Thirty Years of the New History 175 

surely be both unnecessary and incomplete. 1 There are at least 
ten, however, whose work entitles them to be ranked as master 
workmen. In addition to Saunders and Connor, they are: 
Walter Clark, Samuel A'Court Ashe, Daniel Harvey Hill, 
John Spencer Bassett, Charles Lee Coon, William Kenneth 
Boyd, Adelaide Lisetta Fries, and Joseph Gregoire de Roulhac 

All of these were trained in the classical tradition which 
is our most valuable heritage in education from the nine- 
teenth century; each of them, in addition to outstanding work 
in history, was a leading participant in some phase of state- 
wide public service. In this respect, a casual remark by Miss 
Fries 2 to the effect that she did not know how to say "No" in 
regard to her community and her church might well be taken 
with variations to expresss the sentiment of the entire group. 
They were, indeed, known as active and leading citizens of 
the commonwealth of North Carolina and their lives as in- 
dividuals expressed in a superior way the aspirations and 
ambitions of North Carolina people. 

In these circumstances is to be found the key to a concise 
statement of the concept of North Carolina history with 
which the Review began its work in 1924. Clearly these 
masters of the preceding generation considered the main 
business of history to be the depicting of the common effort 
of people in their basic human organizations. 3 Since the state 
is primarily a political entity and since North Carolina his- 
tory is rich in materials involving federal relations, they na- 
turally highlighted political developments within the state 
and the numerous interrelationships between it and its "co- 
states." They gave some attention to the origin and growth 

1 Stephen B. Weeks, "North Carolina Historians," Proceedings and Ad- 
dresses of the Fifteenth Annual Session of the State Literary and His- 
torical Association of North Carolina (Raleigh, 1915), 71-86. This is 
the latest effort to list and characterize North Carolina historians dis- 
covered in this study. 

2 Made to the author at a meeting of the Historical Society of North 
Carolina in Greensboro, November 13, 1948. 

8 J. G. de Roulhac Hamilton, "Vitality in State History," Proceedings of 
the Twentieth and Twenty-First Annual Sessions of the State Literary 
and Historical Association of North Carolina (Raleigh, 1922), 11-19. 
In this presidential address of 1920, Dr. Hamilton spoke of "movements" 
rather than "organizations." 

176 The North Carolina Historical Review 

of social institutions, especially churches, schools and col- 
leges, and the Masonic Order; but on the whole they did an 
indifferent job of integrating these to their central theme of 
political development. Likewise, in an age that considered the 
personal income of even a candidate for public office as a 
private matter, they gave relatively little attention to what 
we now call economic history. For example, they treated 
slavery as a factor in politics and a means of social control 
at much greater length than they did in its presently more 
basic significance as the dominant system of labor in ante 
bellum agriculture. 

A three-period chronology is almost a corollary to the con- 
cept of North Carolina history as the development of insti- 
tutions within the state and their interrelationship with like 
institutions of nationwide character. By 1783 the designation 
Tar Heel was probably not in general use, but the individuali- 
ty of the state had been formed through the interplay of hu- 
man effort, natural resources, and the transmutation of British 
and German ideals into American institutions. The decade 
ending in 1783 is crowded with events indicative of the trans- 
ition from the status of colony to that of a self -directing state. 
During these years the people of the state, acting through 
freely chosen leaders, declared their independence of Great 
Britain, established a government on the untried principle of 
popular sovereignty, initiated the means for implementing 
the social ideals of the Revolution, and entered the "perma- 
nent union" of the American states. 

The second or federal period in North Carolina history was 
an era of rapid nationalization, a fact that has been slurred 
over in our general histories of the United States by over- 
absorption in the details on which the basic issue was fought. 
North Carolina historians of the Old School, on the other 
hand, presented clearly the basic factors in the changing con- 
cept of the Federal Union. Among many other contributions 
they showed that the conservative leaders of North Carolina 
in the 1850's and early 1860's were swept against their better 
judgment into the experiment of a Southern Confederacy. The 
period properly ends with the surrender of Johnston to Sher- 

Thirty Years of the New History 177 

man 4 and the establishment of military government as a sym- 
bol that, for good or ill, national ideals must triumph over 
sectional and state interests. 

The masters of the Old School recognized the period of 
North Carolina history from the end of the Civil War to 1925 
as one of increasing complexity. They did a masterful job 
of presenting Reconstruction as the proud reaction of an 
outraged people to oppression by a Federal government that 
had thrown off all constitutional restraints on its power to do 
evil. They strove valiantly to fit the new facts of race rela- 
tions, industrial mechanization, and extremes of economic 
and social status into the familiar pattern of a loosely strati- 
fied society, an agricultural economy, and a federal system of 
government. They gave us some good chapters of general 
description on the twentieth century, but left the field of in- 
terpretation of recent trends to be divided into the compart- 
ments occupied by the political scientists, the economists, 
the sociologists, and the literary critics. 

As has been indicated before, the leaders of the Old School 
were characterized by an active interest in public affairs. 
Actually the move for the publication of history under the 
auspices of the state was given its first effective impetus dur- 
ing the 1880's and 1890 ? s by the leadership of these histori- 
cally minded public men, especially William L. Saunders, 
Walter Clark, and Samuel A. Ashe. The first active element 
for popularization of the movement was the organization of 
patriotic societies during the nineties. At the turn of the cen- 
tury North Carolina had state bodies affiliated with the fol- 
lowing national or sectional organizations: The Sons of the 
Revolution ( Raleigh, 1893- ) , the Colonial Dames of America 
(Wilmington, 1894- ), the Daughters of the Revolution (Ra- 
leigh, 1896- ), the Society of the Cincinnati (reorganized, 

4 The volume division of the Connor-Boyd-Hamilton, History of North 
Carolina, 3 vols. (Chicago, 1919), brings the Federal period to an end at 
1860. The author of this essay is convinced that this is a matter of con- 
venience, personal interest, and influence of the census reports more than 
it is an incident of historical interpretation. William K. Boyd and J. G. 
de Roulhac Hamilton, in A Syllabus of North Carolina History, 1584-1876 
(Durham, 1913), suggest a presentation of the Civil War as an integral 
phase of the state's development. See also Daniel H. Hill, A History of 
North Carolina in the War Between the States, 2 vols. (Raleigh, 1926). 

178 The North Carolina Historical Review 

Raleigh, 1896- ), the United Daughters of the Confederacy 
(Wilmington, 1897- ), the Daughters of the American Revo- 
lution (Waynesville, 1901- ), and the United Confederate 
Veterans. 5 There was little effort at correlating the work of 
these various groups, and some of them far outdistanced 
others in the achievement of their common endeavors. These 
were the organization of local chapters, the marking of his- 
toric sites, the erection of memorials, the collection of relics 
and records, and the general awakening of public opinion to 
the recognition of historic factors in the cultural growth of 
the state. 

The pioneer organization in the periodical publication of 
formal historical articles in North Carolina was The Daugh- 
ters of the Revolution. The members of this group on De- 
cember 13, 1900, resolved to erect a memorial to the partici- 
pants in the Edenton Tea Party, October 25, 1774. As a means 
of raising funds they hit upon the scheme of establishing and 
selling subscriptions to a periodical publication. The North 
Carolina Booklet (1901-1926) was the result. 6 The editors of 
the Booklet were chosen from the membership of The Daugh- 
ters of the Revolution, but they were able from the first to 
obtain numerous articles from reputable historians and lead- 
ing public men of the day. 

The editors of the Booklet also named an advisory board 
from the active historians of the state; and as the venture 
grew in scope and scholarship the many useful articles ap- 
pearing in its various numbers actually overshadowed in the 
minds of historians both the organization and the cause it 
represented. Its advisory board and list of contributors 
comprised most of the able historians in the state during 
the first quarter of the century and many amateurs of 
better than average ability. Its first and most basic func- 
tion was to furnish the indispensable link between those 
capable of writing history and those interested in reading it. 
That many of its contributions were of a high order of scholar- 

5 Literary and Historical Activities in North Carolina, 1900-1905 (Raleigh, 
1907), I, 500-537. 

6 The North Carolina Booklet, I No. 2 (Raleigh, May 10, 1901) ; Literary 
and Historical Activities, I, 508-521. 

Thirty Years of the New History 179 

ship is best attested by a comparison of the coverage of events 
and personalities in the first volume of Ashe, History of North 
Carolina (Greensboro, 1909) and that in Connor's survey 
based on studies available in 1928. 7 

On October 23, 1900, the friends of history in North Caro- 
lina achieved their first formal unity when the North Carolina 
Literary and Historical Association was formed and three 
months later Walter Clark was chosen as its first president. 
The Association elected Henry Groves Connor as its second 
president and at its third annual meeting on January 23, 1903, 
passed a resolution requesting the General Assembly to estab- 
lish a historical commission. A bill establishing such a com- 
mission with the power to publish materials on North Carolina 
history was written by William Joseph Peele and passed by 
the General. Assembly a few days later. The Commission of 
five members did little more during the first four years of its 
existence than organize by electing Peele as Chairman and 
R. D. W. Connor as secretary. 8 Individual members of the 
Commission, however, continued their activities in the pa- 
triotic societies and other agencies for the promotion of public 
interest in history. At the meeting of the Literary and His- 
torical Association in 1906, Connor, then an assistant in the 
office of the State Superintendent of Public Instruction, made 
a plea for more vigorous state action in a paper, "A State 
Library Building and Department of Archives and Records." 9 

A new day for the publication of history dawned in 1907 
when Connor wrote and the General Assembly passed a bill 
which put the Commission on a permanent basis, appropri- 
ated $5,000 annually for its support, and authorized the 
hiring of a paid secretary. 10 At a salary of $2,000 a year 

7 This statement is not intended to minimize the fact that Connor also 
had the advantage of access to the Historical Papers of the Trinity Col- 
lege Historical Society, Series I-XVI, 1897-1926; and the James Sprunt 
Historical Monographs, Nos. 1-8, Vols. 9-18, 1900-1926. 

8 William B. Brown, "The State Literary and Historical Association, 
1900-1950," North Carolina Historical Review, XXXVIII (April, 1951), 
157-159; J. G. de Roulhac Hamilton, "The Preservation of North Carolina 
History", North Carolina Historical Review, IV (January, 1927), 11-12. 

9 The North Carolina Booklet, VI, No. 3, (January, 1907,) 159-176, 206. 

10 R. D. W. Connor, The North Carolina Historical Commission . . . (Bulle- 
tin No. 1, North Carolina Historical Commission, Raleigh, 1907), 4-8. 
There is a complete financial report in The Second Biennial Report of the 
North Carolina Historical Commission, 1906-1908 (Raleigh, 1909), 15-18. 

180 The North Carolina Historical Review 

Connor entered upon a career as secretary and active execu- 
tive head of the Commission's work that continued until 1921. 
Daniel H. Hill, president of the Literary and Historical As- 
sociation and already at work on his History of North Caro- 
lina in the War Between the States, succeeded as secretary 
to the Commission; Connor became Kenan Professor of 
History and Government at the University of North Caro- 
lina. 11 

In the meantime, a representative group of the state's in- 
terested citizens was keeping up the activities of the Literary 
and Historical Association. Active lobbying probably de- 
clined with the change of meetings in 1911 from January to 
November, but there can be no doubt of the influence of 
resolutions passed and of individual members with the Gen- 
eral Assembly; while the annual meeting with its papers, re- 
ports on publications, public receptions, and the sponsorship 
of other cultural groups was a patent demonstration of state- 
wide interest that everybody could see. A succession of lead- 
ers in various phases of intellectual interests served as officers 
of the Association. Connor was president, 1911-1912, and be- 
came secretary in 1912, thus joining in one person the active 
direction of affairs in both the Commission and Association. 
The first occasion that two full-time, professional historians 
served successively as president was the biennium, 1921- 
1923, when William K. Boyd, Professor of History at Trinity 
College, was succeeded by Adelaide L. Fries, Archivist of 
the Moravian Church and a leader in the North Carolina 
Federation of Women's Clubs. 12 

It is thus notable that by the early twenties three lines of 
development in the state had converged on the policy of a 
forward step in the publishing of history. These were: ( 1 ) the 

11 Henry S. Stroupe, "The North Carolina Department of Archives and 
History - The First Half Century," North Carolina Historical Review, 
XXXI (April, 1954), 184-193. 

13 Brown, "The State Literary and Historical Association, 1900-1950," 
North Carolina Historical Review, XXVIII (April, 1951), 159-197. A com- 
plete list of at least 650 members in 1911 is given in Proceedings of the 
Eleventh and Twelfth Annual Meetings of the State Literary and His- 
torical Association (Raleigh, 1912), 122-137. Hereafter cited as Proceed- 
ings . . . State Literary and Historical Association. The membership was 
around 250 less in 1922, after the formation of other groups. Proceedings 
. . . State Literary and Historical Association (Raleigh, 1923), 97-101. 

Thirty Years of the New History 181 

Literary and Historical Association and related groups; (2) 
active history departments in colleges and the University of 
North Carolina; 13 (3) the North Carolina Historical Com- 
mission. During the years, 1907-1923, there was a small but 
steady stream of publications from the office of the Commis- 
sion. Substantial additions were made to public and private 
records. Proceedings of the Literary and Historical Associa- 
tion, memorial speeches at unveiling ceremonies, reports on 
activities of the patriotic societies, booklets to aid teachers of 
North Carolina history, and other pamphlets possessed one 
common characteristic: they were about North Carolina his- 
tory to a greater extent than they were North Carolina his- 
tory. Some of the papers read at the meeting of the Associa- 
tion, on the other hand, were on a high plane of scholarship; 
and events during the three-year administration of Secretary 
Hill indicate that the members and staff of the Commission 
were virtually of the unanimous opinion that the emphasis 
should be shifted to this type of publication. 

The first formal step in the direction of an expanded pro- 
gram of scholarly publication came in February, 1922, when 
Connor introduced at a meeting of the Commission two 
proposals: (1) that a fellow be appointed at the University 
to work in North Carolina history under the joint supervision 
of the Commission and the Department of History; (2) that 
the Commission offer a prize to college students for the best 
play depicting some phase of North Carolina history. 14 At the 
following meeting of the Commission, "A letter was read 
from Dr. W. K. Boyd, President of the State Literary and 
Historical Association, in reference to the joint publication 
by the Commission and the Association of a historical quar- 

13 J. G. de Roulhac Hamilton, ''History in the South - a Retrospect of 
Half a Century," North Carolina Historical Review, XXXI (April, 1954), 
173-175; William B. Hamilton, Fifty Years of The South Atlantic Quart- 
erly (Durham, 1952), 6-8, 84. The smaller colleges followed closely the 
lead of Trinity and the University in the teaching of North Carolina 
history, though obviously they could not match the publication of his- 
torical materials. See note 7 above. 

M Minutes of the North Carolina Historical Commission, February 28, 
1922. All the minutes herein used are headed: "Office of the Historical 
Commission, Raleigh." They are located in the Department of Archives 
and History and were made available through the means of a microfilm 
strip. Hereafter cited as Minutes of Commission. 

182 The North Carolina Historical Review 

terly. Mr. Noble moved that the chairman and three mem- 
bers be appointed to consider the whole proposition, to for- 
mulate the views of the Commission, and if possible, have a 
conference with the officers of the State Literary and Histori- 
cal Association. The chairman appointed Messrs. Pittman, 
Noble, and Clarkson." 15 

When the matter came before the Commission for a deci- 
sion J. Bryan Grimes, Chairman of the Commission, had died 
and Thomas M. Pittman had been chosen as his successor. The 
reorganized Commission acted favorably on Connor's re- 
quest for a fellow in North Carolina history at the University 
and appropriated $500 annually for his remuneration. "The 
question of the establishment by the Commission of a quar- 
terly magazine was then discussed at some length. It was de- 
cided to start the quarterly as soon as arrangements could 
be made and the Chairman and Secretary were to get the 
matter under way, and given power to complete all necessary 
details." Robert Burton House was appointed Archivist, but 
was also directed to arrange for the publication of the pro- 
posed quarterly. 16 He was formally appointed editor after he 
had prepared for publication two numbers of The North 
Carolina Historical Review. The report of the Secretary to 
the meeting in which House was appointed editor also for- 
mally announced the launching of the Review and stated 
that "this publication is gaining steadily but slowly in paid 
circulation." 17 This statement was purely wishful thinking: 
six months after it was written the number of copies of each 
issue to be published was fixed at 1,500 18 and until very 
recently has remained substantially at the same figure. 

The launching of the Review meant a new departure in 
policy in that it expanded the possibilities for the utilization 
of historical materials on North Carolina from the staff at 
Raleigh and a few interested individuals in the state to the 
hundreds of students reached through the membership of 

w Minutes of Commission, November 20, 1922. 

18 Minutes of Commission, April 17, 1923; letter, Chapel Hill, June 23, 
1954, R. B. House to author. 

17 Minutes of Commission, April 18, 1924. See also Tenth Biennial Report 
of the North Carolina Historical Commission (Raleigh, 1925), 8. 

™ Minutes of Commission, October 17, 1924. 

Thirty Years of the New History 183 

the Literary and Historical Association and libraries and 
universities in every section of the country. Yet in spite of 
the lack of significant income from subscriptions the new 
policy was instituted with only minor adjustments in the 
financial phase of the Commission's program. The General 
Assembly in 1921 and 1923 appropriated $24,000 to maintain 
the Commission for each fiscal year, July 1, 1921-June 30, 
1925. 19 At this time printing of historical materials was done, 
along with that of other state departments, "under the super- 
vision of the Commissioner of Labor and Printing under a 
continuing appropriation of $5,000 for each biennial period." 
Actually the break-down of the Commission's expenditure 
for 1923-1924 revealed that 92.6 per cent of the total ap- 
propriation went to "Personal Services." More than half of 
this latter total went into clerical salaries, while the first ex- 
penditure clearly attributable to the Review alone was the 
payment of $1,500, January, 1924-June, 1925, to "special 
writers for the Review." Upon the death of Secretary Hill in 
the summer of 1924 and the naming of House as acting sec- 
retary there were some changes in both executive and cleri- 
cal salaries which reduced these items by around $1,500. 20 

In the first budget made under the provisions of the Budget 
Act of 1925 the Commission cut the figure for special writers 
to $500 per annum and appointed one of its members to com- 
ply with the order of the Budget Commission that all depart- 
ments of the state government include their printing costs 
in their own budgets. The funds paid to writers for the Re- 
view were allocated under the direction of the Editorial 
Board in fees ranging from $500 to one writer downward to 
no compensation for contributors to the sections on Histori- 
cal News and Historical Notes. 21 In the budget request for 
1924-1925 the item "professional and technical salaries" was 
increased from $235 to $2,325, 22 presumably to pay fees to the 

19 Report of state auditor incorporated into Minutes of Commission, June 
27, 1922; Minutes of Commission, April 17, 1923. 

20 Minutes of Executive Committee, North Carolina Historical Commis- 
sion, August 1, 1924; Minutes of Commission, October 11, 1924. 

21 Minutes of Commission, October 17, 1924; letter, Chapel Hill, June 23, 
1954, R. B. House to author. 

^Minutes of Commission, October 17, 1925. 

184 The North Carolina Historical Review 

members of the Editorial Board. The falling off of appropria- 
tions in the depression years brought a temporary curtail- 
ment of the size of the Review and the cessation of payments 
to contributors and members of the Editorial Board. 23 

The first issue of the Review, January, 1924, bears clear 
evidence that it was rather hastily thrown together from ma- 
terials on hand; it was a departure from former publications 
of the Commission in that twenty-two of its ninety-two pages 
were devoted to reports of the doings of historians in the 
state, book reviews, and a list of articles on North Carolina 
recently published in other periodicals. The April issue of 
1924 contained the first article written mainly from published 
original sources. It was a factual report by Alexander B. An- 
drews, of Raleigh, on the life of Richard Dobbs Spaight, and 
was primarily a collection of references from official records on 
Spaight's activities in the politics of the Revolution and the 
early federal period. By the end of the first year the content 
of the Review was set in the familiar pattern of today, and 
only minor changes in form have since occurred. The practice 
of identifying contributors as to residence and occupation 
was initiated in January, 1927. 

The founding of the Review was the mature fruit of North 
Carolina's Golden Age of history writing. The nature of 
its growth and the spirit of its life have been heavily influ- 
enced by the movement in American historiography identi- 
fied with the decade of the twenties and generally known as 
the New History. Literally reams of complicated and some- 
times controversial interpretations have emerged from dis- 
cussions and investigations of scholars both before and after 
the publication of Harry Elmer Barnes, The New History 
and the Social Studies 2 * in 1925. In spite of all this, we can 

23 Related to the author by David Leroy Corbitt, who became assistant 
editor in 1926. A comparison of budget reports for the decade following 
June 30, 1924, reveals that the total annual expenditure of the Commission 
increased gradually to $30,584 in the fiscal year 1930-1931. It declined to 
$20,380 in 1931-1932. For the clearest comparison see The Budget, 1933-1935 
(Raleigh, 1933), 275. 

24 Reviewed by Alex M. Arnett, North Carolina Historical Review, II 
(October, 1925), 528-530. See also W. W. Pierson, Jr., "Scientific and In- 
terpretative History," North Carolina Historical Review, HI (April, 1926), 
163-183, for a specific example of the influence of Barnes and the New 

Thirty Years of the New History 185 

now see that the New History was little more than an intensi- 
fied drive for general acceptance of three basic criteria for 
the production of good history known and followed by the 
masters of the craft since the days of Herodotus. In short, the 
New History demanded: (1) that every event and circum- 
stance affecting an appreciable portion of a people be con- 
sidered as a legitimate subject for historical study; (2) that 
historical investigators be broadly familiar with the culture 
in which they work and that they base their investigations 
on contemporary records; (3) that interpretations and con- 
clusions follow closely the facts derived from reliable sources 
rather than from preconceived notions in politics, theology, 
and social theory. The New History has itself passed into 
history, but these criteria remain as the most generally ac- 
cepted standards of excellence in adjudging historical pro- 

Summary Distribution of Contributions by Subject Matter 

South and National and 
Southeast Miscellaneous Totals 
48 9 191 

12 3 139 

32 18 212 

92 30 542 

The range of subjects treated in the 542 contributions 25 to 
the Review is sufficient to satisfy the most rabid advocate of 
the broad view of history. A classification on the basis of lo- 
cation reveals 420 contributions dealing with persons and 
events in North Carolina, 92 with the South or some one of 
North Carolina's Southern neighbors, and 30 dealing with 
matters of national import or affairs of the mind and spirit 
that have no geographic limits. Most of the studies of neigh- 
boring states and South have a high degree of utility for stu- 












25 The term "contribution" is used to designate a separate item in a 
single issue. It includes interpretative articles, factual reports, edited 
sources, and installments of studies extended into more than one issue. The 
author is deeply indebted to a former student, Miss Bettie Jane Dougherty, 
who typed on 542 separate cards the bibliographical and biographical in- 
formation here summarized. 

186 The North Carolina Historical Review 

dents of North Carolina history in that they fill in connecting 
links for developments in this state, such as the detailed ac- 
counts of Indian relations in South Carolina, Virginia, and 
Georgia, ante bellum railway developments in Virginia, and 
the origin of the grandfather clause in reconstruction politics 
in Louisiana. These also serve a distinct interest by pointing 
up and emphasizing areas of possible exploitation in North 
Carolina. In the postbellum era, for example, there are alto- 
gether 28 studies on the South and states of the Southeast, 
most of which should be paralleled by studies in North 

In the much exploited field of economic and social history 
the range is so wide that one actually finds it easier to note 
the omissions than to generalize on the subjects treated. 
It is mildly ironic that the Tar Heel state has not produced 
a published historical study of the turpentine industry. 
Though the entire vegetable kingdom has not been covered, 
there is a start in a treatment of the gourd in history. Much 
less attention has been given to manufacturing than to agri- 
culture and commerce, and no study of banking has yet re- 
ceived the approval of the Editorial Board. 

From the earliest days of the Review there has been a 
small trickle of articles dealing with the published works 
that have been written or enjoyed by North Carolinians. Text- 
books, novels, newspapers and periodicals, histories, and 
plays have attracted the attention of investigators most often, 
though the activities in North Carolina of that indefatigable 
literary hack and book pedlar, Parson Mason Locke Weems, 
was the theme of a recent offering. Studies in this category 
are particularly significant, since prior to the days of O. 
Henry and Tom Wolfe, North Carolina had not produced 
a single literary figure of sufficient importance to be includ- 
ed in the standard surveys and textbooks in American litera- 
ture. The enthusiasm and thoroughness of these articles 
also add the substance of hope to the faith of the founders 
of the Literary and Historical Association that literary and 
historical forces could be joined in effective and fruitful 
union. Reviews of current publications in history have com- 
pared favorably with those in the regional and national pro- 

Thirty Years of the New History 187 

fessional journals; while the annual reports on publications 
concerned with North Carolinians have been a joy to libra- 
rians and a solace to that large company of readers whose 
personal budget places book buying in the realm of wishful 

Every issue of the Review through 1953 contained at 
least one contribution in the field of edited source materials. 
Most of these represent no new materials or revolutionary 
viewpoints in history, but are excellent vehicles for the stimu- 
lation of interest in the basic stuff of history in presenting 
human documents in simple and straightforward fashion. No 
particular policy of including or excluding materials by the 
Department of Archives and History seems to have been fol- 
lowed, though there are cases of important documents in 
North Carolina history being made available to students 
within the state through publication in the Review. No 
doubt some aspirants for advanced degrees have spent 
money and time going to Washington and to libraries in New 
York, Massachusetts, and Pennsylvania to gain access to 
materials they could have found in more convenient form 
in the files of the Review in their hometown libraries. 

Distribution of Contributors by Residence 



Washington & 




British Isles 





















Contributors have been almost equally divided between 
dwellers in the state and those whose home addresses are 
scattered from California to the British Isles. It is noticeable 
that the number of new contributors from states other than 
North Carolina has remained fairly constant throughout the 
three decades. The increase in contributors from outside the 
state in the two decades since 1933 is almost entirely account- 
ted for in duplications, twelve new contributors from Wash- 
ington, four from England, and one from Wales. The full 
flower of the joint movements of the New History and the 

188 The North Carolina Historical Review 

new education is seen in the fact that contributors in North 
Carolina, 1944-1953, were exactly equal to the corresponding 
total for the preceding two decades. The total of names 
appearing one or more times for each of the three decades 
covered is 305, but the substraction of duplications reduces 
to around 275 the number of people who made one or more 
contributions. Truly the days of giants in the land have been 
succeeded by an age in which a multitude of mere men in- 
habit the earth. 

The manner of these men— and women— is as different from 
that of the giants of the Old School as educational practices 
of the twentieth century are at variance with those of the 
nineteenth century. The emphasis in our colleges on general 
and somewhat elementary training in reading and writing 
plus concentration in vocational subject matter has produced 
a generation of specialists in this and other fields of scholar- 
ship. The products of our assembly line procedure are of such 
uniform character that luck in locating materials, persistence 
in sticking to the last, physical endurance, and financial back- 
ing have become the most common determinants in the vol- 
ume of production by individual scholars. In all of these the 
balance is heavily weighted in favor of residents within the 

With so many scholars crowding into a relatively restricted 
area it had to happen that somebody would get into some- 
body else's hair. Just how many and whose offering failed to 
make the grade and why they failed are delicate subjects 
that had best be left to the discretion of the Editorial Board. 
It may be safely pointed out, however, that sources were 
covered in sufficient detail and handled with enough skill 
that no rival scholar has challenged in the pages of the Re- 
view an interpretative article in its major conclusions. Three 
articles have been subjects of subsequent letters to the Editor; 
two of these pointed out probable errors in the use of simi- 
lar names for different individuals, and the third raised a 
question concerning the validity of an inference from a quo- 
tation. One of the Englishmen wrote a short article taking 
another to task for an error of two years in timing the removal 
of Joseph Gales from Newark to Sheffield. 

Thirty Years of the New History 189 

A sampling of vocations followed by contributors indi- 
cates that at least three-fourths are teachers in colleges and 
universities. The second largest vocational group is made 
up of professional researchers, archivists, archeologists, and 
the like, to whom history is considerably more than an 
avocation. A few newspaper and periodical editors add 
color to the prevailing academic style of writing; while small 
groups of secondary school teachers, lawyers, soldiers, minis- 
ters, state employees, and housewives keep alive the illusion 
that history is not yet monopolized by the historians. 

As the upbringing of the Review in the strict admonition 
of the New History is reflected in the range of subject-matter 
and the characteristics of its contributors, so is its ancestry 
in the Old School revealed in the interpretations it presents. 
Not much more than a dozen contributions violate the three- 
period chronology by inclusion of the years 1783 and 1865. 
The greatest volume of contributions and the fewest devia- 
tions from standard interpretations are to be found in the 186 
studies of the federal period. Detailed studies of the social 
life and economic status of slaves and free Negroes merely 
substantiate inferences formerly made by intuition and slight 
sampling of sources. Pictures of life in the towns and health 
resorts reveal the white-collar class in its cultural and leisure 
activities and supplement the older record of absorption in 
politics and farming. Even the valuable contributions dealing 
with publications repeat again the familiar refrain that suc- 
cess in politics, farming, and the law was the open sesame 
in ante bellum North Carolina to economic affluence and 
social prestige. Excellent treatments of gold mining, iron 
refining, and tobacco manufacturing present these activities 
as adjuncts to the agricultural system. The score for origin- 
ality of interpretation is a little better for the period of the 
Civil War where the regulation of manufacturing, the growth 
of defeatism, the problem of refugees, and the uses of slave 
labor are treated as significant phases of the sectional test of 
strength in North Carolina. 

The 98 contributions to the colonial and Revolutionary era 
constitute a mine of sound findings worthy of being refined 
and incorporated into the general narrative of North Caro- 

190 The North Carolina Historical Review 

lina history. More than a dozen analyses of political develop- 
ments describe the evolution of law enforcement and repre- 
sentation, the transition from the proprietary system to the 
royal government, and the emergence of a political self-con- 
sciousness in the active leaders at county and provincial level. 
Careful study of these, most of which come in the first half 
of the life of the Review, would do much to remove the 
erroneous idea in the minds of many students that the 
American Revolution really began with the first permanent 
settlement in the Albemarle. Other studies round out the pic- 
ture of colonial life in agriculture, modes of travel, com- 
merce, and the beginnings of religious denominations; while 
one series by a contributor 26 who unfortunately has "gone 
west," presents a cameo of the colonial era in the settlement, 
economic life, and political development of Granville County. 
Careful evaluations of the lives of important leaders in the 
Revolution and the formation of the Confederation add to 
the understanding of personalities in the history of this dy- 
namic period. The richest set of edited sources is the series 
of eighteenth century tracts collected by William K. Boyd 
and later republished in book form. 

Under the most liberal application of the three-fold test 
of excellence laid down by the New History only 58 of the 
136 contributions in the postbellum era can be accounted as 
having added anything more than contemporary atmosphere 
to North Carolina history. Slightly more than half of these 
deal mainly with the period up to 1900, and together make 
a fresh, though hardly original approach to North Carolina 
history. In contrast to the Old School, the four contributions 
on Reconstruction do not attack the Fourteenth Amend- 
ment; rather they accept it by inference as a consequence 
of the Civil War and work out political developments in the 
light of that revolutionary change in federal relations and 
the obligations of the state to its citizens. William W. Holden 
is objectively presented as the center of the pardon machine 
and later as the not so innocent pawn in a political attack 
and counter-attack that led to his impeachment. Something 

26 Nannie Mae Tilley, chairman, history department, East Texas State 
Teachers College, Commerce, Texas. 

Thirty Years of the New History 191 

of the Republican effort to play the role of the party of the 
common man is reflected in treatments of radical disfran- 
chisement and debtor relief. Several excellent studies por- 
traying the growth of railways and manufacturing during 
the 1880's as contrasted to the plight of farmers and factory 
wage earners make more understandable the efforts of church 
people and liberals to get child labor laws passed and the 
phenomenal growth of the Farmers' Alliance. The rising in- 
terest in education is clearly set forth in studies dealing with 
the efforts of religious denominations and the running fight 
in the General Assembly and the state courts for an adequate 
public school system. 

The dependence of the Review on the writers of the 
Old School for interpretative leads is suggested again by the 
complete absence of clear interpretations in the 25 or 30 
studies dealing primarily with the twentieth century. Eight 
historians deal effectively with North Carolina phases of na- 
tional politics, the organization and activities of their fellow 
workers, and the enlightened leadership of liberal Southerners 
originating in North Carolina; about an equal number of 
state employees sketch legislative and administrative de- 
velopments in various phases of the rapidly expanding state 
services. The human bases of the social order are examined 
in treatments of the Farmers' Union, the organization of the 
war effort in 1917-1918, and the labor movement; and evalu- 
ations of general literary and intellectual development pres- 
ent pictures of the various authors' specialties. But the unify- 
ing element of over-all historical characterization is absent 
and cannot be supplied by any reasonable inference. 

Speculation on the observable complexities of the social 
order in twentieth century North Carolina and our failure 
to interpret the nature of that society could lead to extreme 
pessimism. It is possible that we are bewildered by the over- 
whelming multiplicity of our historical resources and are 
stumbling like the proverbial blind dog in a meat house. 
On the other hand, a more optimistic view is that our grop- 
ings need not be in vain if by them we are able to arrive 
at a basic understanding of the forces that are shaping our 

192 The North Carolina Historical Review 

civilization. North Carolina historians, at least, have not yet 
taken the easy way out by accepting the twentieth century 
at its own Gargantuan evaluation, though recently advised 
so to do by one of eminent reputation in the profession. 27 That 
mechanization in industry, corporate structure in business, 
and authoritarianism in national and international affairs have 
together created a new world in the past seventy years is 
obvious to anyone with the most elementary training in his- 
torical observation. But history is not the bondservant of big 
business in the twentieth century any more than it was the 
handmaiden of the church in the early Middle Ages or the 
amanuensis of the schoolmen in the late Middle Ages. Per- 
haps it is but another expression of an individual's inherent 
conservatism on this matter to assert the conviction that our 
preceptors of the first quarter of the century were correct: 
in a democratic society there is no excuse for history except 
to interpret and explain the successive failures and successes 
of people as they strive together under responsible leadership 
to establish and maintain worthwhile institutions. The plain, 
unvarnished truth is that we need desperately a host of sound 
monographic studies on the twentieth century. 

It is increasingly evident that we of the New History do 
not have that intuitive grasp of historical realities that was 
the greatest asset of the Old School. They opened up the 
colonial period as a preliminary to the Revolution and Inde- 
pendence; we have added valuable studies that place the 
era on a firm base of understanding in its world setting. They 
charted a broad course through the maze of conflicting evi- 
dence in the federal period; we have cleared out many re- 
vealing by-paths along the way. In their disjointed studies of 
the postbellum era they contributed a vigorous moral convic- 
tion 28 in matters of political and social justice as a base line 

27 Allan Nevins, "New Lamps for Old in History," North Carolina His- 
torical Review, XXXI (April, 1954), 140-251. 

28 Recent reactions of members of the Old School on this point are in- 
teresting. In 1948 Connor asserted privately that historians should wait 
until the immediate survivors of public figures had died before revealing 
the full story of those figures. Dr. Hamilton in a series of articles in The 
News and Observer (see especially the issue of Sunday, June 21, 1953) 
implies strongly that "a number of unsuspected Democrats," not including 
Zebulon B. Vance, were involved financially in the Littlefied-Swepson frauds, 

Thirty Years of the New History 193 

for a survey of the field; we have made only a few fragment- 
ary investigations, too scanty for a complete picture and too 
scattered to form any pattern of interpretation. Of course, 
no one is naive enough to believe that an accumulation of 
research monographs would suffice as an atonement for this 
signal failure. Rather the hope of the New History is that 
honest research will lead to factual knowlege and that sober 
reflection will add to our knowledge the understanding on 
which to base an explanation of our own times. 


By Harry L. Golden 

The American Jewish community is celebrating the 300th 
anniversary of first Jewish settlement in what is now the 
United States. In September, 1654, twenty-three Jews landed 
on Manhattan Island. They were travelers in search of free- 
dom who won for themselves and for their descendants the 
right to citizenship, the right to worship as Jews, and the right 
to enjoy the opportunities of freedom in America. 

It is entirely natural that the Jewish people should cele- 
brate this sixth Jubilee year of freedom in America. A people 
persecuted in all the millenniums of its history, we could 
never have survived without the sustaining hope of a better 
world ahead. 

And thus, as we look backward and then forward, two 
propositions should be foremost in our minds. First, it is only 
in those lands where freedom has endured, and especially in 
the United States, that the Jew's contribution to civilization 
has been equalled or exceeded by the benefits he has enjoyed. 
This is because the splendid product, democracy, made avail- 
able to all, exceeds the sum of the contributions of each. 
While we shall continue to add to the strength of this country 
both as Americans and as transmitters of the Jewish tradi- 
tion and vitality, we expect nothing in return except that as 
Americans, sharing in the common heritage, participating in 
the common endeavor, we may continue to build our com- 
mon future. 

When we think in terms of a Jewish 300th anniversary 
celebration, or more specifically in terms of the Jewish ex- 
perience in one of our sovereign states— North Carolina— the 
historian has one great advantage. He may approach the 
record of the entire history of human progression with rich 
rewards in source material. The Jew is the one fixture in the 
index of recorded human experience. Thus when we discuss 
a fragment of this experience in North Carolina, for instance, 
we may begin, if we wish, with the Roman historian, Tacitus 
who in his account of the funeral of Julius Caesar, who wrote 
that "The Jews remained for three days to intone their ancient 


The Jewish People of North Carolina 195 

funeral chants." 1 It is therefore the Roman historian who 
gives us the clue to the "Jewish contribution" to our society. 
The Jew was considered "ancient" some nineteen centuries 
ago, yet he appears on the daily scene in each of the eras of 
history with the enthusiasm of a newly-arrived immigrant. 
Contemporaneous with all of recorded history, he refuses to 
take the "glorious" past seriously. Neither has he brooded too 
long over the horrors of an Inquisitor Torquemada, a Cos- 
sack Chmielnitski, or the Teutonic furioso, Hitler. In essence 
the Jew is now what he always was, an eternal optimist with 
a sense of daily life-affirmation of undiminished vitality be- 
traying no slackening of his energies during all the thirty 
centuries of his history. His record of human experience may 
also be called "glamorous," since he looks into our modern 
world with the eyes of former ages and with the knowledge 
that is Jewish by race. But most of this he leaves to Cecil B. 
De Mille. His basic "contribution" to America is that after 
having lived with, and survived, the Egyptians, Babylonians, 
Assyrians, Hittites, Phillistines, Persians, Greeks, and Romans, 
the Jew at this very moment in his history considers it of prime 
importance to become a member of the Board of Directors 
of the Community Chest of "Monroe, N. C," and thousands 
of "Monroes" in every nook and corner of our land and in- 
deed of the entire Western World. This zest for life is the 
true Jewish "contribution" to North Carolina; to America; 
and to civilization itself. 

In approaching his subject, the Jewish historian must be 
wary of a pitfall— the danger that racial pride may cause 
him to blow up a few names out of all proportion to their 
proper place in the building of a great society. This would 
not only be presumptuous but it would betray a sense of inse- 
curity, which is unwarranted in the light of 300 years of un- 
interrupted freedom. North Carolina, of course, is now, and 
has been in the past, a predominantly Gentile society, and 
we must be careful to take no liberties with that basic fact. 

Yet the fact itself ( of the preponderant Gentile section of 
America), offers the Jewish historian an unusual opportunity 
to study the "ingredients" which have coalesced into the com- 

1 Will Durant, Caesar and Christ (New York: Simon and Schuster, The 
Story of Civilization), III, 199. 

196 The North Carolina Historical Review 

pletely free society, and which in specific terms of the Caro- 
linas may be called correctly a 300-year-old "laboratory of 

What then are these "ingredients"? One point in particular 
impresses itself immediately. The new eighteenth century at- 
titude toward the Jews was not an American innovation, but 
a common development of the Anglo-Saxon world. 2 It was 
not geography that ameliorated the savage prejudices of the 
Old World, but an idea— a Humanism which had its roots in 
the Anglo-Calvinist tradition of the British Isles and Holland. 
When the Dutch lost Brazil to Portugal the Jews again had 
to seek out Dutch or Anglo-Saxons, and that is how they 
came to establish their first settlement on this continent in 
the year 1654. It was specifically this Atlantic-Puritan nexus 
which produced a Roger Williams in New England and a 
John Locke for the Carolinas, who gave expression to this 
new Idea, of which the philosopher, Rabbi Leo Baeck, has 
said: ". . . it broke all ties with antiquity ... it no longer 
carried the Middle Ages on its back." 3 

Immediately in the wake of the Quakers, French Huguen- 
ots, Moravians, and Jews, this Anglo-Saxon society in the 
Carolinas invited the philosopher John Locke to establish 
its own tradition in terms of the new land. In the same year 
(1668) that the Ukrainian Bogdan Chmielnitski was mas- 
sacring more than a half-million Jews in Eastern Europe, 
Locke wrote the Fundamental Constitutions* for the Caro- 
linas ". . . in as ample manner as they (the people) might 
desire, freedom and liberty of conscience in all religious or 
spiritual things." The Constitutions expressly stated that as 
"Jews, heathens, and other dissenters" might be induced to 
settle in the Colony, "any seven or more persons agreeing 
in any religion shall constitute a church or profession." 

These Anglo-Saxons who left their country and faced the 
dangers of the ocean to seek in the wilderness of North Ameri- 

2 Cecil Roth, Two Cradles of Jewish Liberty, (London: Anglo-Jewish 
Association, 1955), 18. 

'Address before the Union of American Hebrew Congregation, quoted 
in Time magazine, Aug. 18, 1952. 

* George Bancroft, History of the United States (New York, 1886), III, 

The Jewish People of North Carolina 197 

ca the right to worship God according to the dictates of their 
own conscience had created a new idea in human relations. 
And for the first time in the entire history of the Diaspora the 
Jews did not enter upon a new land under sufferance, nor 
even by "negotiation." The Anglo-Saxons had eliminated the 
"host" and "guest" relationship. Indeed, the immigrant of to- 
day was by right the "host" of tomorrow. But so far-reaching 
an advance in intellectual Humanism required its own per- 
iod of gestation. The precursors of this Americanism did not 
quite know from the beginning how to solve the problem of 
the relation of their faiths to this New Freedom. The Ang- 
lican Church attempted to establish the pattern by weight of 
numbers. In North Carolina this tradition persisted, at least 
on paper, for nearly a century after the establishment of the 
Bill of Rights. A constitutional provision forbade public office 
to anyone who denied the "being of God or the truth of the 
Protestant religion, or the divine authority of either the Old 
or New Testament or who shall hold Religious principles 
incompatible with the freedom and safety of the State." It is 
pertinent to our study to note carefully that during this en- 
tire ninety-year debate for the repeal of this provision, we 
have been unable to uncover a single derogatory reference to 
the Jews, as a people. The provision, which involved Catho- 
lics, Jews, Quakers, and Deists, was clearly in conflict with 
Article 19 of the Bill of Rights. There was no pride in this 
constitutional provision, and as a matter of fact, Catholics, 
Jews, Quakers, and Deists had held public office. An effort to 
expel Jacob Henry, a Jew, had failed in 1809. 5 The Catholics 

5 Jacob Henry was elected to the state legislature in 1808. A year later, 
upon reflection, an opponent tried to unseat him and based his action 
upon the provision in the state constitution which required "belief in the 
divine authority of the New Testament." Henry addressed the legislature: 
It is difficult to conceive how such a provision crept into the Constitu- 
tion, unless it is from the difficulty the human mind feels in suddenly 
emancipating itself from fetters by which it has long been enchained : . . . 
If a man should hold religious principles incompatible with the free- 
dom and safety of the State, I do not hesitate to pronounce that he 
should be excluded from the public councils of the same; and I trust, 
if I know myself, no one would be more ready to aid and assist than 
myself. But I should really be at a loss to specify any known religious 
principles which are thus dangerous. It is surely a question between 
a man and his maker, and requires more than human attributes to 
pronounce which of the numerous sects prevailing in the world is 
most acceptable to the Deity. If a man fulfills the duties of that re- 

198 The North Carolina Historical Review 

were admitted to the British House of Commons in 1828; the 
Jews in 1858; and the rationalists who refused to take an 
oath in the name of any God, in 1884. It was no coincidence 
that North Carolina followed the Mother Country in almost 
perfect chronological order. 

In the constitutional process of the free society, religious 
freedom is the last to be developed and to become perfect, 
as demonstrated by the example of England and America, as 
well as after the French Revolution. The memories of com- 
mon persecutions, however, were finally the cause, through 
necessary evolution, of the glorious and full emancipation of 
religion taught to the world by the English-speaking civili- 

Thus, when we discuss the Jewish people of North Caro- 
lina, we are on solid ground when we look at them as a con- 
tinuing culture and tradition. This is true not only of the Jew, 
but of all our peoples. Certainly the mind and the heart of 
one section of our state reflects much more than the physi- 
cal presence of the Moravians, but goes back to its roots in the 

ligion, which his education or his conscience has pointed to him as 
the true one, no person, I hold, in this, our land of liberty, has a right 
to arraign him at the bar of any inquisition; and the day, I trust, has 
long passed, when principles merely speculative were propagated by 
force; when the sincere and pious were made victims, and the light- 
minded bribed into hypocrites. Governments only concern the actions 
and conduct of man, and not his speculative notions. . . . Shall this 
free country set an example of persecution, which even the returning 
reason of enslaved Europe would not submit to? Will you bind the 
conscience in chains? Will you drive from your shores and from the 
shelter of your Constitution all who do not lay their oblations on the 
same altar, observe the same ritual, and subscribe to the same dogmas? 
If so, which among the various sects into which we are divided, shall 
be the favored one?. . . 
The legislature allowed Henry to keep his seat on a technicality. The 
fight went on. John Branch, James Iredell, W. N. Edwards, William Gaston, 
Zebulon B. Vance, but above all, Nathaniel Macon, were the Tar Heel 
statesmen who kept the struggle alive for the sixty years it took for the 
final elimination of the disability clause. Henry's speech was reprinted in 
a book called the American Orator, and made a profound impression even 
outside of North Carolina. In speaking on the Maryland Jew Bill, in 1818, 
the Hon. H. M. Brackenridge said: "In the State of North Carolina there 
is a memorable instance on record of an attempt to expel Mr. Henry, a 
Jew, from the legislative body of which he had been elected a member. 
The speech he delivered on that occasion I hold in my hand. It is pub- 
lished in a collection called the American Orator, a book given to your 
children at school and containing those republican truths you wish to see 
earliest implanted in their minds. Mr. Henry prevailed, and it is part of 
our education as Americans to love and cherish the sentiments uttered 
by him on that occasion." Leon Huhner, "Religious Liberty in North Car- 
olina With Special Reference to the Jews," Publications of the American 
Jewish Historical Society (New York, 1907) No. 16, 37-71. 

The Jewish People of North Carolina 199 

forests of Bohemia. By the same token the attitudes, and 
what we call the "American way of life" within our North 
Carolina society, are anchored deeply in the Anglo-Calvinist 
traditions and cultures of the British Isles; and so it is proper 
that we approach the history of the Jewish people, as a people 
—as a continuing cultural and religious group; and on that 
basis our findings dwarf the combined influence of all the 
individuals within that group over these entire 300 years. 
This influence is clearly stamped upon the consciousness of 
North Carolina, and on the day-to-day living of its people, 
as it is stamped upon the whole of western civilization. You 
have but to travel a few miles in any direction to come under 
its influence— Pisgah, Cedars of Lebanon, Mount Olive, 
Mount Gilead, Mt. Hebron, Nebo, Ararat, Winston-Salem— 
and at every crossroads in the length and breadth of our state 
the inscription: "This way to Beth El Chapel." And Abraham 
called the place Beth El, House of God. And from the pulpit 
of every church of every denomination every Sunday, the 
Hebraic ideal: 

It hath been told thee, Man, what is good, 
And what the Lord doth require of thee ; 
Only to do justice, and to love mercy, and to walk 
humbly with thy God. 

In this interpretation of our history the life of the Jewish 
people within this society takes on its proper perspective 
the substance which it has in truth transferred to the ebb and 
flow of the daily life of the Gentile community in which it 
has lived in peace and in prosperity. 

It has a further historical significance. In fact it assumes 
great proportions in keeping with the history of America as 
a nation; the story of the transplanting of the Nordic and 
Mediterranean cultures which compose the fabric of this 
country. Look at it once, a few scattered settlements along 
the Atlantic seaboard. Look at it again, a mighty nation— the 
mightiest nation the world has ever seen. Where did they 
come from? Clerks and soldiers from England, seamen from 
Scotland, laborers from Ireland, miners from Wales, peasants 
from Italy, woodcutters from Sweden, farmers from Ger- 

200 The North Carolina Historical Review 

many, tailors from Russia, Negroes from Africa; Christian 
and Jew, the pious and the unchurched; the disinherited 
and the adventurers, the persecuted, the tired and the home- 
less—and they became Americans— Americans all. Woodrow 
Wilson was right— America is nothing except in terms of every 
one of them. 

North Carolina's participation in the American Jewish 
Tercentenary parallels the 300 years of recorded history. 
The earliest Jews undoubtedly came from the Barbadoes, of 
Spanish-Portugese origin. Since early Jewish settlers estab- 
lished the indigo trade in America, we may assume that many 
of these traders and exporters were established along the 
North Carolina seacoast. But the earliest name of record ap- 
pears to be that of Aaron Moses, 6 who appears as a witness 
to a will in 1740. In 1750 we run across a petition to a coun- 
cil by David David for a grant of 180 acres of land at New 
Hanover. His petition was granted, and in 1752 David appears 
on the muster roll of the New Hanover County militia in 
Captain Merrick's company. 

Jewish participation in the Revolutionary War was part 
of the natural process of advancing equality. Most of the 
2,000 Jews in the colonies backed the independence move- 
ment, and names of Jewish merchants appear on the Non- 
Importation resolutions. The volunteers for Washington's 
army from North Carolina include the names of Aaron Cohen 
of Albemarle, J. Nathan of Charlotte, and Sigmund Freuden- 
thal of New Hanover. 7 However, only the records of the 
10th regiment of the North Carolina line are complete and 
they include William Solomon, in Sharp's Company, Abra- 
ham Moses, Lazarus Solomon, in Rhodes's Company, Isaac 
Sampson, in Brevard's Company, and Moses Stern on the roll 
of the North Carolina Battalion. 8 Aaron Cohen's daughter, 

e Leon Huhner, "The Jews in North Carolina Prior to 1800," Publications 
of the American Jewish Historical Society (New York, 1925), No. 29, 141. 
Hereafter cited as Huhner, "Jews in North Carolina." 

7 Aaron Cohen's gravestone (d. 1819) in the Baltimore Hebrew Benevo- 
lent Society cemetery is inscribed, "A Soldier in Washington's Army." 
References to J. Nathan and Sigmund Freudenthal were supplied by de- 
scendants; I. L. Lyon, Philadelphia, Pa.; and Mrs. Walter Rausch, New 
York, New York, respectively. 

8 Huhner, "Jews of North Carolina," 144-145. 

The Jewish People op North Carolina 201 

Elizabeth, was the first interment in the Hebrew Cemetery 
of Charlotte, which secured its charter in 1859. 9 

The name of Francis Salvador, the most famous Jew of 
South Carolina, also appears in North Carolina history. Sal- 
vador came to Charleston from England in 1773. He bought 
lands in South Carolina and lodged with a Jewish friend, Rich- 
ard A. Rapely of Coroneka, commonly called Cornacre. Sal- 
vador was reared in luxury, but placed his entire fortune at 
the disposal of his adopted land. He had been in the colony 
only a year when he was elected to the South Carolina Gen- 
eral Assembly, probably the first Jew in history to be elected to 
public office by a Christian community. ( Interesting note : In 
1954, Hon. Solomon Blatt, a Jew of Barnwell, was re-elected 
for the ninth term as the Speaker of the same General Assem- 
bly.) In a rare work entitled "Narrative of Colonel David 
Fanning, a Tory in the Revolutionary War, giving an Account 
of his Adventures in North Carolina from 1775 to 1783," 10 
occurs the following under date of July, 1775: 

We called musters in various counties, and captains pre- 
sented two papers for the inhabitants to sign, one to see who 
were friends of the King and Government, and the other to 
see who would join the rebellion. 

Fanning relates how he presented the two papers, and that 
118 signed in favor of the king. His narrative then continues: 

There were several advertisements set up in every part of 
said district that there was a very great Presbyterian minister 
to call at the different places to preach and baptize children. 
. . . But at the time appointed, instead of meeting a minister, 
we all went to meet two Jews by name of Silvedoor and Rapely, 
and after making many speeches in favor of the rebellion and 
used all their endeavors to delude the people away, at last pre- 
sented rebellion papers to see who would sign them. They were 
severely reprimanded by Henry O'Neil and many others. It 
came so high that they had much adue to get off with their lives. 

9 The Hebrew Cemetery in Charlotte was organized in 1859. Prior to that 
date it was the custom to ship the remains of the dead either to the earlier 
established Hebrew cemeteries in Charleston, S. C, Wilmington or States- 
ville, or more often to relatives in northern centers. 

10 Huhner, "Jews of North Carolina," 142. 

202 The North Carolina Historical Review 

The rebels then found that we were fully determined to oppose 

At the beginning of the nineteenth century, we begin to 
find records of political and commercial activities involving 
North Carolina Jews. Jacob Mordecai established the first pri- 
vate school for girls in the South, at Warrenton, in 1809. 11 
The school boarded an average of eighty girls a year and each 
pupil was sent to the church of parental choice. The text- 
books used were Brooks' Gazetter, Guthrie's Grammar of 
Geography, Tooke's Pantheon, and Blair's Rhetoric. In addi- 
tion, music, embroidery, and sewing were taught. One of 
Mordecai's sons, George Washington Mordecai, also played 
an important role in the economic and cultural development 
of the state. He was the first president of the state-owned 
Bank of North Carolina, and built the Raleigh and Gaston 
Railroad, which ran from the State Capital to the Roanoke 
River. The family was assimilated into Christianity toward 
the end of the ninetenth century; its most distinguished mem- 
ber of this generation was the late Samuel Fox Mordecai, for 
many years dean of the Trinity College (later Duke Univer- 
sity) Law School. Reared in the Christian religion 12 from 

"Huhner, "Jews of North Carolina," 146. 

12 Harry L. Golden, "Jews of the South," American Jewish Congress 
Weekly, December, 1952. Jewish "assimilation" into Christianity during 
the nineteenth century was fairly consistent in the Carolinas and the South. 
The absence of any "communal" activity; the greater distances between 
towns; the sparsity of numbers, and the religious character of the section, 
all contributed to this pattern. Oddly enough very few formal conversions 
were involved. In the main, the process was the result of a "mixed-mar- 
riage," nearly always involving a Jewish male and a Gentile female. The 
head of the family maintained at least a tenuous tie with Judaism, but 
upon his death the Gentile widow and the children integrated into the 
main stream of the Protestant majority. Most of the Spanish Jews of 
Colonial days and many of the German Jews of the mid-nineteenth cen- 
tury were thus absorbed into the several Christian denominations. (At 
the present time, 1955, at least ninety per cent of the Jewish people of 
the Carolinas — and the South — are first and second generation citizens of 
Eastern European origin). Many leading Christian families of the Car- 
olinas today bear the same names as those on tombstones erected eighty 
and ninety years ago in the Hebrew cemeteries of Charleston and Camden, 
S. C, and Charlotte, N. C This Jewish assimilation into Christianity in 
the Carolinas (and generally throughout the South) has been obscured 
due to the lack of authentic data. There are no records, of course. The 
numbers involved were not large, but the percentage was the highest in 
the country. In addition to "evidence" gathered from the old synagogue 
membership rolls and tombstones in the Jewish cemeteries, new sources 
of information on these conversions are now available. These sources are 
the Christian families involved. The writer has found that there is now 

The Jewish People of North Carolina 203 

birth, he had once been mentioned for the position of presi- 
dent of Trinity College. Dean Mordecai wrote a humorous 
sonnet: 13 

a disposition to recall Jewish ancestors with both pride and affection. 
This is particularly true of those families who have acquired the greatest 
sense of "security" through wealth and prestige. This higher percentage 
of Jews becoming totally integrated into the Protestant majority was due 
also to the fact that there never was any "compulsion" to leave the Jewish 
faith either out of fear or as a requirement to thrive and prosper. This 
was true even during the periods of the two Ku Klux Klans. Furthermore, 
there was also an affinity on religious grounds. It has raised the percent- 
age of converts through mixed-marriage, but it has also intensified a great- 
er religious consciousness among the Jews themselves. In the Carolinas 
where the people have long since been divorced from European influence, 
the Gentile has not completely separated his Jewish neighbor from the 
image he carries of Abraham or Jeremiah. The Southern Protestant 
"understood" the Jew as a member of a religious group — either as a pious 
Jew, or as a convert to Christianity. When the Jew was neither he be- 
came (to the Southerner) an "enigma." But this has worked both ways. 
The Jews have always been alert to reflect the habits and the attitudes 
of the Protestant majority. Thus in the case of Zionism, for instance, 
there would not have been the almost unanimous support for the movement 
if the "majority" had been hostile to the idea. Southern Protestantism was 
wholly receptive: "Itfs in the Book" 

While "mixed-marriage" continues at the approximate ratio of one out 
of every eight marriages involving a Jewish male, we find a surprising 
development in recent years. At least half of the Gentile brides involved 
are entering the Jewish faith. (Few mixed-marriages have involved a 
Jewish female. In the early days, the European immigrant who came into 
the Carolinas and the south was unmarried, usually a teen-age boy. He 
did not come into contact with Jewish girls. In the first place there weren't 
many. Secondly, the Jewish families that were already established here, 
were well integrated into the upper middle-class, at least on an economic 
level, and often on a social level too. This family, usually of German origin, 
was not going to turn the young daughter over to an immigrant from 
Russia, or Poland. The daughter would have been spoken for by one of the 
other Jewish families of equal status, or was living with relatives in 
Baltimore, Philadelphia, or New York. There has been very little change 
in this pattern. The Jewish girls have less opportunity for "outside" con- 
tacts than the boys who are out selling or managing as soon as they leave 
high school or college. Since the Jews represent a single proprietary class, 
the girls are under no pressure to start a career or earn wages. In fact, 
the girl's "freedom" from any economic worries is part of the growing 
"status" of the family. In the smaller towns the family still sends the 
daughter off to relatives in the large cities to expose her to larger Jewish 

There is yet another development of major significance in the life of the 
Jewish people of the Carolinas and the south in general. The new genera- 
tion of native-born Jewish boys and girls are the backbone of Jewish re- 
ligious life in the South. The older generation was intent upon "getting 
ahead." That, together with a social segregation that was partly imposed 
and partly self-imposed, gave them little or no contact with the Christian 
society at the personal level. But their children are now living with it 
from day-to-day. The values that are constantly stressed by their Gentile 
classmates and friends are in terms of "Sunday School," "church," "my 
preacher," and "The Bible." This new generation of native-born Jews in 
the Carolinas and the South may very well be on its way to the establish- 
ment of an American-type Jewish orthodoxy. 

"Mordecai's Miscellanies (Durham, published privately, 1927), 35. I am 
indebted to Mr. Thad Stem, Jr., of Oxford, N. C, for the loan of a rare copy. 

204 The North Carolina Historical Review 

With trite constructive platitude, 

I now express my gratitude 
To each and every person who 

heard my 'naug'ral through; 
And I'm sure that my election 

Shows great powers of selection 
In those who chose for President 

Mr. Mordecai, the Jew. 

For the Jewish people, the American Civil War was an im- 
portant milestone. Its significance lies not so much in the indi- 
vidual participation ( which based on proportionate numbers 
represented a mere detail) but on its demonstration of the 
responsibility of citizenship. The Jews had not been long 
out of the ghettos of Europe where for nearly 1600 years 
they lived as a homogeneous community under European 
law of group activity and group responsibility. This homo- 
geneity was intensified by the struggle to survive in surround- 
ings of unrelieved hostility. Yet in freedom Jews of the South 
generally supported the Confederacy and Jews of the North 
followed the Union fortunes, in proportion to their relative 
numbers. Thus nearly 2,000 years of in-group living was 
shattered in a single moment by that same American idea 
that permits each citizen to determine his views in accordance 
with the dictates of his private conscience. 

Paradoxically this American right to behave "separately" 
unloosed the first serious attack ( in the United States ) upon 
the Jews as a people. 14 The radical abolitionists, using the 
secessionism of Judah P. Benjamin (Secretary of State of 
the Confederacy), attempted to create in America an aware- 
ness for the European concept of "group responsibility" as 
it concerned the Jews. 15 Notwithstanding the fact that Rabbi 

14 Judd L. Teller's excellent work, Scapegoat of Revolution (New York, 
Charles Scribner's Sons, 1955), 84-88. Hereafter cited as Teller, Scapegoat 
of Revolution. 

15 Of course, in Gentile folklore "All the Jews stick together," which 
once prompted the observation from that noble mind, Bernard Berenson, 
"Oh, if we only possessed some of the qualities with which we are re- 
proached." Bernard Berenson, Rumor and Reflection (New York, Simon and 
Schuster, 1952), 145. Winston Churchill, probably the most "aware" Anglo- 
Saxon of our century, has written, "One Jew is a Prime Minister, two 
Jews are a Prime Minister and a Leader of the Loyal Opposition." Winston 
Churchill, Greek and Jew, from an address quoted in the New York Times, 
Jan. 11, 1948. Thus, while the Jewish stereotype is still with us to some 

The Jewish People of North Carolina 205 

David Einhorn had fled Baltimore before a pro-slavery lynch 
mob, most of the important abolitionist editors, clergymen, 
and politicians attempted to equate the Jews' refusal to en- 
dorse en bloc the abolitionist cause with treason against the 
Republic. 16 

From North Carolina came the six Cohen brothers for the 
40th Infantry, and the first Jew to fall for the Confederacy 
was Albert Lurie Moses of Charlotte, who died at the Battle 
of Seven Pines. He had seized an eight-inch shell with the 
fuse burning, fallen into a gun pit and saved many lives. The 
shell has since been engraved and stands over his grave near 
Columbus, Ga. 

When the war broke out Major Alfred Mordecai, 17 an in- 
structor in Ordnance at West Point, was in charge of the Wa- 

degree — the identification of the individual with the group as a whole 
has never entered into American law. In the entire history of the United 
States there have been only two isolated instances of an "official" attempt 
to identify the actions of one or a few with a group as a people. The first 
was the Civil War "Order No. 11" issued by General Grant who, irked by 
the activities of some peddlers "barred" the Jews "as a race" from certain 
war areas. Official Records of the War of the Rebellion, Series 1, Volume 
XVII, Part 2, 424, issued on December 17, 1862, expelling all Jews from 
his (Grant's) department. On January 7, 1863, by direction of General 
Halleck, then general-in-chief, this order was revoked. This order can be 
found in the same volume as above, 544. The second such attempt was made 
in January, 1955, when the office of the Secretary of Agriculture attempted 
to identify a major segment of American Jewry (of Russion origin) with 
the alleged "un-American" beliefs of a single individual. In each case the 
American people rejected the idea quickly and decisively. 

16 Rabbi Isaac Mayer Wise, founder of American Reform Judaism, himself 
an ardent Abolitionist, answered the critics of the southern Jews; ". . . the 
Jew is as little responsible for the politics of other Jews as the Catholic, 
Protestant, Deist or Atheist is for the politics of his co-religionists. ... If 
the largest portion of the Jewish population of Richmond, Charleston, and 
New Orleans give aid and comfort to rebellion, as our opponents maintain, 
they do exactly as others do in the same localities. . . . You Abolitionists 
with the grandiloquent and bombastic declamations, of philanthropy, free- 
dom, and attachment to the Government, why do you not go down South 
and expound your doctrines to the community; and if you dare not do it, 
why do you expect the Jews there to stand in opposition to the mass of the 
people?" Teller, Scapegoat of Revolution. Interestingly enough Judah P. 
Benjamin, Secretary of War and later Secretary of State in the cabinet 
of Jefferson Davis, who raised the ire of the Abolitionists against Jews as a 
people, was used for the same purpose in the South. During Benjamin's 
hassle with General "Stonewall" Jackson over the loss of Roanoke Island, 
demands were made upon the President of the Confederacy to remove "Mr. 
Israelite." A Rev. Willicomb of Virginia demanded the removal of Benjamin 
as a member of the "tribe which killed Jesus." The irony of this situation 
on both sides of the Mason-Dixon line is that Mr. Benjamin, born a Jew, 
was never known to have practised the religion or to speak "as a Jew" 
at any time in his entire public career. He was buried in Paris with the 
rites of the Roman Catholic Church. 

17 A son of Jacob Mordecai of Warrenton, N. C, Gratz Mordecai, "Notice 
of Jacob Mordecai, Founder and Proprietor from 1809 to 1818 of the 

206 The North Carolina Historical Review 

tervleit (N. Y.) Arsenal, the largest in the country. He re- 
signed his commission stating that he was unwilling "to forge 
arms to be used against my aged mother, brothers and sisters" 
(in North Carolina). 

In the Woodlawn Cemetery at Elmira, New York, site of a 
Federal camp for Confederate prisoners of war, the North 
Carolina Jews who are buried include Levi Southan, Co. A, 
28th N. C. Inf.; Edward Harris, Co. G, 26th; I. M. Pinner, 
Co. E, 2nd; Jesse Simons, Co. G, 20th; Daniel Jonas, Co. D, 
1st; Nathan Altman, Co. C, 40th; Henry Daniel, Co. F, 10th; 
J. Israel, Co. E, 51st; Moses Simmons, Co. G, 20th; David 
Lewis, Co. C, 22nd. From Charlotte also came J. Roessler, 
one of the founders of the first local Jewish congregation, 
who was a captain in the 40th Infantry; and Lewis Leon, a 
prominent Charlotte citizen after the war, who had originally 
enlisted in South Carolina. 18 

Warrenton (N. C.) Female Seminary," Publications of the American 
Jewish Historical Society (New York, 1897), No. 6, 124-138. Jacob Mordecai 
married Judith Myers of Philadelphia. They lived in New York, Philadel- 
phia, Richmond, Petersburg, and finally Warrenton (N. C.) where he 
established a country store in 1791. He also shipped tobacco and cotton to 
northern markets. Jacob's wife died in the birth of their seventh child. The 
eldest son Moses, and eldest daughter Rachel were born in Richmond. All the 
other children were born in Warrenton, and they included sons Solomon, 
who studied medicine and practiced in Mobile, Alabama; Alfred, appointed 
to West Point from North Carolina in 1823; George Washington Mordecai, 
practiced law in Raleigh, was first president of the Bank of the State of 
North Carolina, and president of the Raleigh and Gaston Railroad. He was 
a member of the commission appointed by Governor Charles Manly to study 
plans for a Hospital for Mental Patients. "Dix Hill" near Raleigh was 
chosen by him. Another son, Samuel, settled in Richmond, Va., and was the 
author of Richmond in By-Gone Days. Major Alfred Mordecai mentioned 
above was the author of three text books used in West Point, Reports of 
Experiments in Gunpowder, 1854-59, Artillery for the United States Land 
Service, and Ordnance Manual for Use of the Officers in the United States 
Army, first edition, 1841, second edition, 1850. Upon his resignation from 
the Army he settled in Philadelphia. After the war he helped build the 
Mexico and Pacific Railroad from Vera Cruz to the Pacific Ocean. Upon 
his return to Philadephia he became Secretary and Treasurer of the 
Pennsylvania Canal Company, controlled by the Pennsylvania Railroad. The 
letter quoted giving his reason for resignation from the Army was included 
in his memoirs privately printed in Philadelphia in 1886 on the occasion 
of his fiftieth wedding anniversary. 

18 "Integration," especially in time of trouble, is universal. Pvt. Lewis 
Leon of Charlotte, marksman in the 53rd North Carolina Infantry, kept a 
diary. (Mr. John R. Peacock of High Point, N. C, who owns it, graciously 
sent a photostatic copy to the American Jewish Historical Society in 1952.) 
It is interesting to note that a young Jewish immigrant from Poland 
on September 19, 1862, recorded: "This morning they read an order 
from our father R. E. Lee in which he gave furlough to all Israelites in 
honor of Jewish New Year. Wortheim, Oppenheim, Norment, Katz, and 
myself, as well as Lieut. E. Cohen, worshipped" (italics mine). 

The Jewish People of North Carolina 207 

The Jews of North Carolina followed the pattern of the 
three major waves of immigration to the United States. First 
the Spanish-Portugese, then the German Jews, and finally 
after 1880, the Jews from Eastern Europe, who brought the 
pattern of communal life which included an emphasis on 
learning, self-help, social justice, and keen responsibility for 
the Jew overseas. 

The Jews who came to North Carolina in the second half 
of the nineteenth century, like those in all other sections of 
the eastern seaboard, found that the streets were neither 
paved with gold, nor that dollars grew on trees. They turned 
to the one profession open to them. They became peddlers. 
The Cherokees identified them as "egg-eaters." The basis for 
this may be in the fact that some of the peddlers adhered to 
the dietary laws of Moses and avoided meat of any kind 
until they returned to their "base of operations" on Friday 
evening in time to observe the Sabbath. 

For Virginia and the Carolinas, the main source of mer- 
chandise supply was at Baltimore, Maryland, but within each 
state the peddlers had "way stations" where they stored small 
stocks and which they called "home for Sabbath." In North 
Carolina these "stations" were at Wilmington, Albemarle, 
and Yanceyville. Often the peddlers during the last two de- 
cades of the nineteenth century made one of these "way 
station- warehouses" a permanent home. In the August 2, 
1860, issue of the Hebrew Leader (N. Y.) there was included 
the following advertisement: "Wanted by the Israelites of 
Wilmington, North Carolina, Hazan, Schocket, Mohel. Com- 
municate M. Hirschberger, Wilmington, N. C." 19 [An indi- 
vidual who could combine the professions of cantor, ritual 
butcher, and circumciserl 

The peddler was a walking "department store." When he 
first came through North Carolina and the other states of 
our country, he sometimes carried as much as 125 pounds 
on his back, and his goods included not only the minor 
accessories such as suspenders, socks, handkerchiefs, and 
needles, but also the finer linens, curtains, taffetas for the 

"American Jewish Archives, Hebrew Union College, Jewish Institute 
of Religion (Cincinnati, Ohio), June 1952, 109. 

208 The North Carolina Historical Review 

farm wife's Sunday dress, ribbons for the youngsters, and 
many gewgaws which helped brighten the monotony of 
isolated living. 

The peddler's coming was a gala event in the lives of the 
North Carolina farmers and pioneers. They all came out of 
the fields, and while the women folk and children began to 
examine the wares, the farmer himself would probably be 
asking the peddler about news from the adjoining county, 
or from the state capital; perhaps even a word about Bis- 
marck or Queen Victoria. The Tar Heel novelist, Bernice 
Kelly Harris, who has given us the most vivid picture of rural 
life in eastern North Carolina, writes that the coming of the 
peddler was an event in the rural day of not many events. 
"When he was seen turning the corner at Old Uncle Nat's, we 
children rushed from the mulberry orchard houseward to 
persuade Mother to let the peddler open his packs, just to 
let him open his packs, even if nothing was to be bought. 
. . . Mother bought only needles and pins to pay the peddler 
for his trouble in opening the packs. . . ." 20 

Eventually, the peddler became the merchant and many 
of them acquired great wealth and distinction such as Joseph 
Fels, founder of the Fels Naptha Company, who started as 
a peddler and whose father before him had peddled out of 
Yanceyville, N. C. Many another peddler's son rose to emi- 
nence as a "merchant prince," and within a half-century the 
peddler had indeed raised the entire business of buying and 

20 Bernice Kelly Harris, Foreword, Folk Plays of Eastern Carolina 
(Chapel Hill, University of North Carolina Press, 1940), xxi. At first 
the peddler was referred to as a "Dutchman." A death notice in The 
Landmark (Statesville), October 11, 1884, refers to the transportation of 
the "remains of A. Blum, a Dutch peddler" from Wilmington to Baltimore. 
Both Josephus Daniels in his Tar Heel Editor and Mrs. Harris in the 
above mentioned book of plays, speak of the "Dutch" peddler. It is interest- 
ing to note that Professor Oscar Handlin states that in early New England, 
too, the Jewish peddler was "looked upon as just another kind of German." 
Adventure in Freedom (New York, McGraw-Hill, 1954), 85-88. The term 
"Jew-peddler" began to appear in the public prints in the early part of 
this century, and later developed into the term "Jew-store" which is still 
widely used among the rural white and Negro populations. It was not 
intended as an insult, since customers upon entering the establishment 
often asked: "Is this a Jew-store?" The interest in the designation was 
probably heightened by a legend that a Jewish merchant would make every 
possible concession or sacrifice to record a "first" sale of the day, and that 
he would accept any "offer" rather than lose his first customer. The farmers 
would vie with one another to be the first one in the store to get a "bargain" 
on their own terms. 

The Jewish People of North Carolina 209 

selling into the realm of the nobler arts— a profession com- 
parable in dignity to that of the jurist and physician. 

Essentially, however, the Jewish community of North Caro- 
lina, like the state itself, has recorded the most important 
part of its history during the past fifty years. The saga of 
Moses Henry Cone and his brother, Caesar Cone, of Greens- 
boro, is the story of the industrial development of North 
Carolina into the greatest textile-producing area in the world. 
The Cones were the first to introduce a variety of cotton 
manufactures as well as the orderly method of world-wide 
distribution. They were pioneers in the establishment of 
a welfare program to afford their employees every opportunity 
for social, mental, physical, and spiritual advancement. 21 

21 Herman Cone came to the United States from his native Altenstadt, 
Bavaria, in 1854, and opened a country store in Jonesboro, Tennessee. 
During the Civil War he added a small foundry where he manufactured 
bullets for the Confederate Army. In 1870 with his two oldest boys, Moses 
H. and Monroe, he established a wholesale grocery, leather and cigar 
business in Baltimore, Maryland. Later, another son, Caesar, joined the 
business. (Monroe died in 1891). Another son, Bernard, studied law and in 
his youth was associated with the famous New York law firm, Guggenheim, 
Untermyer and Marshall. The Cone connection with North Carolina and the 
textile business came through their wholesale establishment in Baltimore. 
After one of the serious economic depressions, many of the country stores 
in North Carolina were in debt to the Cones of Baltimore. When things 
began to pick up these merchants were still not able to discharge their debts, 
and were forced to make smaller purchases for cash, or seek credit else- 
where. Moses H. Cone wrote them all a letter. He said that he was sorry 
for their predicament, but he urged them to buy what goods they needed, 
and not to worry about the old accounts, that they could pay when they felt 
perfectly secure in their survival. Out of this came the friendship and the 
connections in North Carolina which led to the fabulous Cone enterprises. 
When the Cones entered the textile business, the southern mills had no 
credit with the New York banks ; they were making only one product, and 
its distribution was based on a chaotic competition among themselves. The 
Cones established the Cone Export and Commission Company which, with 
several other commission houses, became the bankers for the southern mills. 
They also introduced a variety of manufactures into the industry, and an 
orderly method of world-wide distribution. Other children of the fabulous 
Herman Cone achieved distinction in the arts and sciences. Dr. Claribel 
Cone graduated with honors as an M. D. from the Women's Medical College 
at Baltimore. In 1903, she was elected to the presidency of the institution. 
Dr. Cone's great interest was the study of preventive medicine. She lectured 
at Johns Hopkins and did research at the Pasteur Institute in Paris. Her 
sister, Miss Etta Cone, was a pioneer worker in favor of woman suffrage. 
She was also an art collector who, with her brother Frederick Cone, began 
to collect original paintings by French artists who included Matisse and 
Picasso. After the death of Miss Etta Cone in 1949 the Baltimore Museum 
of Art had the privilege of making a selection from the paintings collected 
by Miss Etta and Frederick. This exhibit is now on display at the Balti- 
more Museum of Art. Cyrus Adler, Necrology (Caesar Cone). Publications 
of the American Jewish Historical Society, (New York, 1918), No. 26, 

210 The North Carolina Historical Review 

Today the company operates 600,000 spindles— nearly three 
per cent of the entire textile industry and in the last decade 
the Cones have "plowed" back more than $50,000,000 for 
modernization and expansion of their operations. 22 

The Jewish migration from the large northern centers into 
North Carolina in more substantial numbers began in the first 
decade of this century when the rolling mills and textile 
plants were beginning to flourish. As the population grew, 
merchants established retail stores in every city, town, and 
rural way-station in the state. Nearly all these retail estab- 
lishments sold "soft goods"— ready-to-wear clothing and ac- 
cessories. 23 The initial success of these small merchants was 
due to the fact that they permitted the Negro to try on the 

22 Speech by Herman Cone quoted in Greensboro Daily News, January 16, 

23 The entire economy of the Jew in North Carolina (and the South) is 
based on self-employment. If a man loses his business and lacks the capital 
to try again, he will find it necessary to go to one of the metropolitan 
centers in the North to find a job. When the young man is ready to embark 
upon his career he will go into business with his father or father-in-law, 
or he may take a job as a salesman, traveling the territory for a (Jewish) 
manufacturer, wholesaler or mill agent. In effect the 3,180 Jewish families 
in North Carolina represent a single proprietary class of small capitalists; 
retailers, jobbers, wholesalers, manufacturers or mill agents. Their activi- 
ties center around the manufacture and distribution of textiles, wholesalers 
and mill agents for the knitting and hosiery mills, operators of retail stores 
(ready-to-wear and credit jewelry), manufacture and distribution of chemi- 
cals, and dealers in textile machinery, metals, metal scrap, linen service and 
supply, and cotton waste. There are no Jews in banking, insurance, publish- 
ing, or in the food, drug, beverage, tobacco and construction industries. If 
we are to accept a yardstick (Mark Twain) that "successful business is 
honest business," the Jews of North Carolina (and the South) have achieved 
a record that compares favorably with the general community. At least 
eighty per cent of the establishments, plants, and stores doing business to- 
day are operating under original certificate of ownership or articles of 
incorporation. During the past three or four years many traveling sales- 
men have established their homes in North Carolina. Most of these men have 
covered the territory for many years but continued to maintain their homes 
in the metropolitan centers in the North. A few years ago, however, they 
began to move South. The territory involved usually includes Virginia and 
the two Carolinas, which makes the city of Greensboro, N. C, the most 
convenient "base" from which to operate. Because of this influx of several 
hundred traveling men and their families during the past three years, 
Greensboro now has the largest Jewish population in the state with ap- 
proximately 500 families. 

There is yet another development which may eventually change the char- 
acter of Jewish life in the Carolinas if not in the entire South. Dozens of 
manufacturers in the needle trades have established factories in the Caro- 
linas during the past five years. For the first time, we now find a few 
Jewish "employees" in the several communities — factory superintendents, 
machinists, designers, and cutters. 

The Jewish People of North Carolina 211 

merchandise for size and fit without the obligation to make 
the purchase. 24 

In 1910 there were five established congregations, of which 
Temple Israel of Wilmington had been the first; and there 
was one secular organization, the first state-chartered YMHA, 
at Asheville. In 1955 there are 27 established congregations, 
a full-time "circuit-riding" rabbi to minister to the small 
towns, and over 40 local and state-wide fraternities, charity 
federations, and associations, including Hillel establishments 
at both Duke and the University of North Carolina. 25 

24 In the mercantile establishments of the South the rule governing 
Negroes for many years after the Reconstruction period was: — "Don't 
touch it if you're not going to buy it." The Jewish merchants in general 
did not follow this policy, and in fact catered to this Negro market for 
ready-to-wear and other apparel. The relationship was never beyond that 
of tradesman and customer. As the (Jewish) merchants prospered, they 
identified themselves more and more with the white Protestant middle class 
and eventually assumed the attitudes and even the prejudices of the white 

25 According to the census records for 1870 (State Department of Archives 
and History) there were approximately 250-300 Jews in North Carolina. 
Since there were no established congregations, the writer made the estimate 
on the basis of "name" and "place of birth," for example, "Morris Springer, 
age 35, born in Poland." Of these 250-300 Jews in the state, four were 
native-born, eleven were born in South Carolina, two hundred and ten 
gave Germany, Bavaria, or Prussia as their birthplace, nine were natives 
of Philadelphia, two from New York, eighteen from Poland, seven from 
England, and one from Holland. (No census reports were available for 
hundreds of isolated communities of the state, but this would not have any 
substantial bearing on our figures.) The "importance" of the individual 
community followed the pattern of the state's industrial development. In 
1870 the most important "Jewish" community was Statesville, N. C. This 
was due primarily to the presence of the Wallace family. Isaac and David 
Wallace were peddlers who started in the vicinity of Bamberg, South 
Carolina, upon their arrival in this country in 1859. A few years later 
they moved to Statesville where they established a mercantile business. 
They sold supplies to the farmers, ran a small banking business and a drug 
counter. They encouraged the farmers to bring their roots and herbs to the 
Wallace store and soon the brothers developed a crude drug business on a 
national scale which was to help the farmers of five North Carolina coun- 
ties for nearly seventy-five years. Toward the end of the nineteenth century 
Wilmington, the seaport of North Carolina, became the largest Jewish 
community. It was here that the first formal congregation had been or- 
ganized in 1867. The first synagogue in the state was built there in 1875. 
The importance shifted again to the western part of the state with the great 
industrial development of the Piedmont section. Since the 1920's the cities 
of Charlotte, Greensboro, Durham, and Winston-Salem have had the largest 
and most active communities. In the November, 1875, issue of The American 
Israelite, published by Rabbi Isaac Myer Wise in Cincinnati, Ohio, appeared 
this item : "Charlotte, North Carolina, is a city of 8,000 or 9,000 inhabitants 
and we have about twenty-five Jewish families. The Jewish ladies of the 
city have established a Society under the name of the Ladies Benevolent 
Society. It is now a year old. Last Purim we gave a ball, and cleared 
$100.00. The last meeting took place in the home of J. Rintels and the 
following were elected officers for the year 1876: President, Mrs. J. Rintels; 
Vice-President, Mrs. A. Frankenthal; Secretary, Mrs. J. Rothschild; 

212 The North Carolina Historical Review 

The responsibility of citizenship includes, of course, the 
responsibility of wealth, and the Jewish citizens of North 
Carolina, no less than their Gentile neighbors, have done 
their part. The North Carolina community has one of the 
outstanding records in the nation for humanitarianism in com- 
ing to the rescue of stricken brethren overseas, a record in 
which the Gentile community also played a notable part. 
The many benefactions include endowments for science and 
cancer research from the James Heineman family of Char- 
lotte and Robert J. Gurney of Gastonia; in education, the 
Weil family of Goldsboro with the Weil Lectures on Citizen- 
ship at the University of North Carolina; and the Cones of 
Greensboro in the humanities, with recreation halls, a colored 
YMCA, the 35,000-acre "Moses H. Cone Memorial Park" at 
Blowing Rock, deeded to the government for public use, and 
the "Moses H. Cone Memorial Hospital" at Greensboro. 

But essentially North Carolina, like America itself, is 
PEOPLE: of strong men and weak, of bold visionaries and 
of frightened newcomers, of men and women who may never 
even have set foot in the commonwealth, but whose works 
have left us richer in mind, in body and in spirit; of people 
like the Jewish immigrant, Dr. Joseph Goldberger, who found 
the cure for pellagra and helped thousands of our southern 
children to grow up with sturdy legs; of Julius Rosenwald 
of Sears Roebuck who contributed millions of dollars to pro- 
vide elementary schooling for the rural colored population 
of North Carolina, and the rest of the south; of Mrs. Connor, 
the Roman Catholic mother of Judge Henry Groves Connor, 
and of Mrs. Emil Rosenthal, wife of a Jewish merchant of 
Wilson, and Mrs. Mary Cleaves Daniels, a Methodist and 
mother of Josephus Daniels— three women who were known 
as the "Three Almoners"— who pioneered in welfare work and 

Treasurer, Mrs. J. Baumgarten; Trustees of the School Committee, Miss 
E. Baruch, Miss L. Goldberg, and Mrs. F. Frankenthal. Our town is small 
but gives promise of becoming a greater city than any of her sister 
cities." Signed: "A. S." 

In 1880 Washington Duke brought some 200 Jewish cigarette makers to 
Durham, but they returned to the North after a year when a dispute arose 
over the scale of wages. In 1955 the estimated Jewish population based on 
synagogue and fraternal memberships is 3,180 families or approximately 
10,000 souls. 

The Jewish People of North Carolina 213 

ministrations in the days when there were no trained nurses, 
no hospitals, no Red Cross or Community Chest organiza- 
tions; of Zebulon Baird Vance, 26 whose address The Scattered 

26 Zebulon B. Vance was Civil War governor of North Carolina. Elected 
again in 1876, he served three elective terms in the United States Senate. 
He died in 1894, and his name was chosen to represent North Carolina in 
the National Hall of Statuary in Washington. The address, The Scattered 
Nation, was read from hundreds of pulpits and reprinted in nearly every 
newspaper and journal published in the South: 

This curious phenomenon (the Gulf Stream) in the physical world 
has its counterpart in the moral. There is a lonely river in the 
midst of the ocean of mankind. The mightiest floods of human 
temptation have never caused it to overflow and the fiercest fires 
of human cruelty, though seven times heated in the furnace of 
religious bigotry, have never caused it to dry up, although its waves 
for two thousand years have rolled crimson with the blood of 
its martyrs. Its fountain is in the grey dawn of the world's history, 
and its mouth is somewhere in the shadows of eternity. It too re- 
fuses to mingle with the surrounding waves, and the line which 
divides its restless billows from the common waters of humanity 
is also plainly visible to the eye. It is the Jewish race. . . . 
The Jew is beyond doubt the most remarkable man of this world 
past or present. Of all the stories of the sons of men, there is 
none so wild, so wonderful, so full of extreme mutation, so replete 
with suffering and horror, so abounding in extraordinary provi- 
dences, so overflowing with scenic romance. There is no man who 
approaches him in the extent and character of the influence which 
he has exercised over the human family. His history is the history 
of our civilization and progress in this world, and our faith and 
hope in that which is to come. From him have we derived the form 
and pattern of all that is excellent on earth or in heaven. . . . 

Even now, though the Jews have long since ceased to exist as a 
consolidated nation, inhabiting a common country, and for eight- 
teen hundred years have been scattered far and near over the 
wide earth, their strange customs, their distinct features, personal 
peculiarities and their scattered unity, make them still a wonder 
and an astonishment. . . . 
It is quite possible that Vance's life-long friendship for the Jewish people 
may have had its origin in an experience at the end of the Civil War. Vance, 
the war-time governor of North Carolina, returned to his home in Statesville 
under orders of the Union General Schofield. On May 13, 1865, a squadron 
of General Hugh J. Kilpatrick's cavalry surrounded his home, arrested him 
and prepared to take him to Washington. As the railroad and telegraph 
lines had been completely destroyed, Statesville was cut off from the outside 
world. The Union officer in charge wanted the Governor to ride horseback 
thirty-five miles to the railroad at Salisbury. A Jewish merchant, Samuel 
Wittkowsky, urged the Union officer to spare the Governor this indignity. 
It was agreed that Wittkowsky would "deliver" Governor Vance to Salis- 
bury. And on that May day, the famous war governor and the immigrant 
Jew started out on the long buggy ride surrounded by two hundred Union 
cavalry. Clement Dowd, Life of Zebulon B. Vance (Charlotte, N. C. 1897). 
Full text of The Scattered Nation, 369, 399. Vance's experiences with 
Wittkowsky are related in the same volume, 95. Wittkowsky became one 
of the most successful business men in the state. He established the first 
building and loan enterprise in the South and amassed a huge fortune. At 
the funeral of Senator Vance, Wittkowsky was among state and national 
dignitaries who delivered eulogies. With the simple faith of Anatole France's 
"Juggler," Mr. Wittkowsky said: "No Israelite in North Carolina ever 
voted against Zebulon B. Vance." Charlotte Observer, April 17, 1894. 

214 The North Carolina Historical Review 

Nation raised our prestige as a people; of Nathaniel Macon 
who successfully defeated an early hate organization; of a 
Josephus Daniels who always held out the hand of friendship 
and brotherhood; of a Mallissia Haywood, of Montgomery 

27 Mallissia Haywood befriended the Jewish peddlers who covered the 
wide rural area of eastern and central North Carolina. Mr. Harry Richter 
recalls her in an interesting letter to the writer. Harry Richter and Moses 
Richter, Jewish immigrants from Russia, came to North Carolina as 
peddlers in the closing days of the nineteenth century. Today Moses Richter 
of Mt. Gilead, N. C is the largest independent peach distributor in the coun- 
try serving hundreds of farmers and peach growers in the Carolinas. He also 
operates several large mills manufacturing cotton and rayon finished 
products. Harry Richter, a merchant of Norwood, N. C, recalls Mallissia 
Haywood and the early days of the peddler in the state: 

The first time I met the Haywoods was in the late afternoon of a 
warm spring day. They were both engaged in chopping cotton. It 
was in the early part of the century and I, a young man, newly 
arrived from Southern Russia, was peddling my wares in the 
sparse settlements of Montgomery County, North Carolina. No 
transactions were made, but the Haywoods displayed a curious 
interest in me. They offered me lodging for the night which I 
gladly accepted. It was quite evident that the Haywoods were 
very poor, earning their livelihood from a none too impressive 
farm. (Cotton was selling at $25.00 a bale and corn in proportion.) 
Still, there was a serenity and orderliness about the place that 
made it quaint, if not attractive. 

The dominant figure in this idyllic environment was the mistress 
of the home herself. Her name was Mallissia Frances. I later 
learned that she was related, on her mother's side, to Flora Mac- 
Donald. Of this she was very proud. One had the feeling that she 
was different from the other women that lived in the little houses 
down the road. Not outstanding in any particular way, she seem- 
ingly possessed in proper balance the many qualities that are the 
making of a remarkable personality. She was kindness itself 
and her face had an exalted look, a strange glow that visibly 
came from inner depths. 

The evening was spent in difficult conversation (I was barely 
three months in the country) and right there and then I received 
my first lesson in English. Mallissia Haywood, a school teacher in 
her younger days, introduced me into the intricacies of the English 
language. This lesson was followed up by many others on my 
subsequent visits. 

Before the year was over I terminated my peddling career and 
went to work in a gold mine, near Candor, N. C, known as the 
Montgomery Mine. The Haywoods had by this time opened a board- 
ing house near the mine. Instead of being an occasional visitor, I 
now became a full-fledged boarder. There were other boarders also 
and since the Haywoods maintained their touch with the soil, still 
growing the white man's crops, cotton and corn, Mallissia was 
busier than ever. I frequently wondered where she found the 
strength to cope with all her activities. 

Though deeply religious, she was most tolerant of the beliefs of 
others. This was clearly demonstrated when on long winter nights 
we'd all sit and listen to Mallissia's readings from the Bible. When 
I expressed my preference for the Old Testament, she seemed 
bewildered at first, but after a brief explanation, she acquiesced 
most graciously with all her natural tact and charm and, thereafter, 
refrained from her favorite New Testament in my presence. I 
later realized the unfairness of my position and requested that 

The Jewish People of North Carolina 215 

County, who at the turn of the century made her farmhouse 
a haven of rest for the Jewish peddlers traveling over the state 
and helped them with their English lessons, joined them in 
their ancient morning prayers, and listened to their letters 
from Europe. 

she alternate between the Old and New Testaments. I somehow felt 
that the great Hillel would have done likewise. The letters I'd get 
from home written in Yiddish, had to be read aloud in the original, 
just for the sound of the only foreign language she ever heard. 
Then it had to be translated word for word. 

She frequently reminded me of my duties towards my parents on 
'the other side.' It made her very happy every time I sent money 
to my parents. 

The dietary observances of her Jew boarders were looked after 
most carefully. The biscuits were prepared without lard and the 
eggs were kept at a safe distance from the inevitable porker, of 
which there were always several varieties on the table. She was 
an educated woman according to the standards of late 19th and 
early 20th century, and although looked up to by her less endowed 
sisters, never made a display of her superiority. She was as modest 
and plain as the rocky, unyielding fields which she helped till. 
She was probably the hardest working woman I ever met. She 
could do a man's full time job as well as any man. Like the frontier 
women of an earlier date and the wives of the pioneers before 
them, she had the love and the joy of work in her heart. It was 
quite natural and no hardship whatsoever, to work in the fields 
from early morning till dark, a full day in the hot sun. This besides 
cooking, sewing, laundering (by hand) and the rearing of a size- 
able family. 

But let it be remembered that the case of Mallissia Haywood, 
remarkable woman that she was, was not an isolated one. There 
were many Mallissias in those days throughout the length and 
breadth of the land. It was they who befriended us, confused, be- 
wildered immigrants newly arrived from a different world, with 
the European milieu still in our bones. The adjustment was diffi- 
cult, sometimes painful, and it was the Mallissias in every state 
in the union who gave us the care and warmth that meant so 
much in the early stages of our becoming Americans. Many, like 
myself, were mere youngsters, fresh from the last embrace of their 
mothers, left alone with their fears and longings for the sons they 
were never to see again — our sad-eyed mothers in the ghettos of 
Europe who gave so much of themselves and received so little 
in return — 

Our heroic mothers who never knew youth, were made to marry 
at an early age, reared large families and, in many cases, were also 
the bread earners of their children and a pious impractical husband, 
well learned in the Law — 

Our good mothers who would leave their hungry brood to cover 
the town, with kerchief in hand, collecting pittances for some un- 
fortunate widow or dowry for a poor bride — 

Mothers are the same all over the world and here we were to 
find the same mothers in another incarnation. They took us into 
their homes, gave us the best rooms in the house, the choicest bed 
and made us feel that we were more than mere laughable in- 
dividuals with a foreign accent. They raised our dignity and 
gave us hope. To them we were the sons of the old proud Hebrews 
with the blood of prophets in our veins. They were the first to 
make us feel that we really belonged. From a letter to the author 
from Harry Richter, Norwood, N. C, October 14, 1954. 

216 The North Carolina Historical Review 

Because indeed, there would be no history to tell unless 
we spoke of PEOPLE—the People of North Carolina and 
the People of America, who inspired adherence to the re- 
ligious law of Jeremiah: "Pray ye for the peace of the city 
in which ye dwell." 

By Robert Mason 

From the pens of North Carolina novelists, story-tellers, 
poets, and rhymesters there came this year 32 books. Spread 
before one, they form a fascinating exhibit of the artist's, the 
typesetter's, and the bookbinder's skills, for all are new; their 
dustjackets intact and inviting, their pages crisp and unsoiled. 
A few are of standard thickness, but most are thin; volumes of 
poetry and children's works predominate. The 32 hardly 
would fill a shelf of a living room bookcase. 

But what an investment of search, of knowledge, of talent 
—and of vanity— we have represented here. How many years 
of experience, of reflection, of note-making, and of the dread- 
fully hard work of writing have gone into these gay and these 
somber-backed books! One is likely to wonder, too, of the 
thrills of triumph among the first-time authors mirrored in 
the by-lines, and whether the scattering of production- 
writers who contributed to the display did not experience, 
upon the press-room delivery, an odd mixture of satisfaction 
and misgivings. 

Most of all, one lifting this book and that of the 32, arrang- 
ing them into the three general classifications, is likely to 
speculate upon the quality of this year's North Carolina fic- 
tion, poetry, and children's art-stories: is there permanency 
here, or will these volumes soon be forgotten, like the autumn 
leaves their jackets suggest? What has been the Tar Teel 
contribution to the regional, the national, and the world liter- 
ature in the year now ending? 

Time will have the final say. Already the popular success 
—and that is important, although not conclusive— of two or 
three is evidence that creations of some stature are in the 
list; the majority, meanwhile, can be expected to survive only 
in narrow spaces. But no hour devoted to the reading of 
these books can be wasted. Even where quality is lacking 
(and often it is in the privately brought-out scraps of verse 
and essays), inspiration is evident, and as likely as not con- 

[ 217 ] 

218 The North Carolina Historical Review 

Four books of the 32 are novels and another is a collection 
of short stories; all these bear the imprint of first-line publish- 
ing houses. A sixth is drama—a work which thousands know 
as one of the great outdoor productions of which North Caro- 
lina peculiarly is the capital, in both writing and enactment. 
Except for the fact that all qualify as fiction, common ground 
is scarce among them. While all except one are of southern 
setting, and two of the novels relate the construction of per- , 
sonal empires through ruthlessness and the effect of this 
upon several lives, in no case is the similarity remarkable. 
The authors are as heterogeneous as their plots and tech- 
niques: some came into the state, others were born here and 
founded their careers elsewhere; only two, I think, are na- 
tive North Carolinians who have remained. A couple of 
these writers are still in their youth. Future successes may be 
expected of all save one. He is dead. 

One of the novels will fit more easily than any of the others 
into the broad pattern of southern literature as it is generally 
recognized from a world point of view. That is The Planta- 
tion, by Ovid Williams Pierce. 

I do not mean to imply that this distinguished book is 
stereotyped; nothing could be further from the truth. Indeed, 
its gentleness, its simplicity, its beauty give it rareness. But it 
has that characteristic which the Literary Supplement of the 
London Times in a recent and salutary article on American 
writing found to be shared by the South's best prose artists: 
a passionate feeling for Place. Here Place is not treated in 
merely its historical and prideful meaning , but "in its sensory 
meaning , the breathing world of sight and smell and sound, 
in its earth and water and sky, in its time and its season." 

Mr. Pierce's story is dedicated to Place— a plantation in 
northeastern North Carolina (it could have been in two or 
three other southern states, but not in random part of any) 
early in this century, in a period critical to plantation life: 
Tradition hangs by a cobweb, mold is in the air. 

There are, of course, people in the story, and skillfully 
done, too, but they are subject to Place. They occupy three 
levels, all according to the standards of Place— the owners 

North Carolina Fiction, 1953-1954 219 

and the Negroes, both long established and each depending 
upon the other, and white persons of a lesser ( and, it being 
the South, fixed) station, brought in as near-stranger and 
stranger out of need. In the solemn dignity of Place, the indi- 
viduals of all three strata have dignity, too; and Mr. Pierce's 
presentation of that points up a skill which ranks him, with 
this single book, near the top of the South's new writers. 

But attention to Place, or lack of it, is not the sole basis 
for judging writing, and I shall not explore it further, ex- 
cept to say that each of this year's North Carolina authors 
of fiction who employs familiar setting practices a funda- 
mental rule of story-telling and gives readers reason to be 
grateful for his insight. 

Event is the foundation of The Kingpin, by Thomas Wick- 
er—a novel obviously based on North Carolina's senatorial 
contest of two summers ago. Any person who observed the 
progress of that campaign is certain to recognize practices 
and persons— but he must not look too closely. Mr. Wicker 
blends history with imagination, changing things as actually 
they occurred to suit the requirements of story and thesis: 
that is standard practice, too. The book makes me think of 
Number One, which John Dos Passos wrote a dozen years 
ago, and thereby a little sad; that was a chronicle of Huey 
Long's tactics, and it is not pleasant to be reminded that 
Longism to any degree had its counterpart in our state. 

One dozen stories make up The Gentle Insurrection, by 
Doris Betts. The title story is not the best but in theme is 
representative: patience and frustration, hope and discour- 
agement, realism and the refusal to recognize it are inter- 
twined in simple lives, adding up to tragedy— the hallmark 
of the young writer, which the young southern writer is like- 
ly to confuse with his birthright. I liked particularly "Ser- 
pents and Doves"; it is a fine character study worked out 
with mature compassion. Sometimes the people whom Mrs. 
Betts uses for her stories are superficial, but never discour- 
agingly so; she is also given to caricature, but never cruelly. 
The remarkable thing is that in her years she has discovered 
and discerned so much. Her future is bright. 

220 The North Carolina Historical Review 

The strange and slick world of advertising centered in 
New York's skyscrapers is the setting of The Whip Hand, by 
Ian Gordon, who abandoned the hucksters for the husks of 
a writer's table. The dustjacket illustration is most prophetic. 
It shows a desk and chair in a modernistic office; on the 
desk are a man's tie and two martini glasses, on the chair 
and under it are a woman's coat and her shoes. The gone 
addict of the light novel and box of chocolates no doubt 
will be prepared for the ending. I was not. 

Those fortunate ones who have seen Unto These Hills, Ker- 
mit Hunter's drama of the Cherokees, know it for its tre- 
mendous stage qualities. Reading the play, which has been 
brought out in illustrated book form by the University of 
North Carolina Press, is almost as rewarding as sitting be- 
neath the stars in the Great Smokies theater and seeing a 
climaxing chapter of the Red Man's past unfold. The econ- 
omy of dialogue, as contrasted to the speech-writing which 
authors of historical pageants have not always been able to 
resist, is the work of a thorough technician; the narrator's 
passages are the product of a poet truly humble before his 

Good-bye, My Lady. That is the title of James Street's 
last complete book of fiction. At about the time it was pub- 
lished, we said, "Good-bye, Jimmie." For Mr. Street, who 
was bom in Mississippi and newspapered in half a dozen 
places, most successfully (and conspiciously ) in New York, 
died in the home he had chosen to be his last—Chapel Hill. 

Here is not Mr. Street's masterpiece. But like the author 
himself, the little book is dearly compelling— and full of 
fine sentiment. It is about a boy— a subject the author was 
as competent to write on as Mark Twain or William Saroyan 
—and his dog. As Mr. Pierce chose a critical time in the life 
of a plantation to forge into a story, so Mr. Street selected 
an especially sensitive time in a boy's life: that mystical 
period when he passes from childhood into manhood. To 
guide Skeeter through this stage of testing, there is old Uncle 
Jesse, who is short on book learning but long on the ways 
of the swamp. 

North Carolina Fiction, 1953-1954 221 

But wait, isn't this the Readers Digest formula for enter- 
taining the person who likes to slip his mind into neutral 
when he reads: boy with chin up, little dog, unforgettable 
character? Of course it is. But into this universal appeal 
James Street wove his surprisingly great knowledge of the 
lower Mississippi country and its people, his humor, his 
mastery of the yarn, his respect for regionalism, his tolerance, 
and his tremendous sense of the individual's right to stand 
in the sun. 

James Street lived in North Carolina for nine years. The 
writing part of the state can say, "Thanks, Jimmie, for all of 

Exactly half of all this year's fiction by North Carolinians 
is for children. The number should not be surprising; the 
youth market is an ample one and, I'm told, often a lucrative 

The boundary between senior and junior books of the 32 
is as thin as a flyleaf. Any child above ten should appre- 
ciate Mr. Street's book. And no adult should find Penny Rose, 
by Mebane Holoman Burgwyn, below his range of interests. 
Mrs. Burgwyn tells a first-rate story of a nearly-grown girl 
and her problems, including (of course!) those of the heart. 
There's a mystery in the background, and when it is cleared 
up, a lot of things suddenly assume satisfactory perspective; 
the climax comes fairly tumbling upon the reader. This author 
has a fine talent. 

Burgess Leonard contributed two of the books for young- 
sters, one about football, the other about baseball. A uni- 
versity varsity star to whom I lent One-Man Rackfield found 
it authentic and absorbing. As a baseball fan of long stand- 
ing, after picking up The Rookie Fights Rack I was reluctant 
to put it down. 

It is difficult to speak with conviction about books for 
really little folks. A friend of mine who writes them once 
assured me that most are worthless, and I suppose they are, 
from a strictly critical view. Pictures receive quite as much, 
and sometimes more, emphasis than text, inasmuch as sub- 
school-age children who must be read to, enjoy looking at 

222 The North Carolina Historical Review 

the illustrations and identifying the words with them. I had 
the feeling, though, that the most skillfully executed of these 
pictures might have the least appeal to children. One set is 
done in crayon, as best I can tell, uniform in blue-grey and 
somewhat eerie in quality. Shouldn't they be livelier? My 
favorite pictures among the lot are in a tiny book about 
chickens and dogs and cats. The colors are brilliant and the 
lines so few and subtle as to be absolutely delightful. I hope 
children like these; I am sure James Whistler would have. 

I have come at last, and not without trepidation, to the 
books of poetry, of which the year brought ten— seven of 
them by women. I shall not take them all up singly, because 
the pattern of the majority is the same. 

However, Thad Stem's The Jackknife Horse deserves close 
attention, for it seemed to me that here is an original Tar 
Heel voice. Mr. Stem is producing what he calls "Ageless 
Fruit in solitary blossoms." Yet, in the same poem, he is 
capable of such a foolishness as "the mad suns that bite/ 
The despondent apple trees." He has energy and poetic 

Not by a bushelful of oceans, nor a peck of April clouds, 
Not by a jugful of raindrops and rose buds. 

There are moments of Robert Frost, others when he brings 
a rather proletarian (in the best sense) tone, as "This ding- 
dong-who's-got-the-whiskey existence." While I don't care so 
much for the allegation that "the night comes like a rancid 
lover," he can strike at the sordid with real eloquence: 

God, the times are like a broken bone 
That will not knit, or like a blind dog 
Chasing a cat up a dead-end alley. 

Beyond any doubt, the Maximus Poems, by Charles Olson, 
are the most ambitious work represented in the year's col- 
lection. These poems seek and demand comparison with 
Ezra Pond's The Cantos, and perhaps also with William Car- 
los Williams's Taterson. But the comparison is earned only 

North Carolina Fiction, 1953-1954 223 

by virture of prolixity and complexity— both of which, I 
fear, here seem relatively superfluous. The thing is, Pound 
had such a vast storehouse of cultural odds and ends to draw 
on and so much to make out of them, that his complexity 
was necessary. Here, such is not the case. 

But Mr. Olson is no phoney. I am cheered by his willing- 
ness to experiment, for that is necessary to the growth of all 
the arts, and sometimes his colloquialisms and juxtapositions 
lead to startling insights. 

Julian Mason applied a superior intellect to the poems 
making up Search Party, but with him poetry is a less serious 
matter, I think, than with Mr. Stem and Mr. Olson. He lays 
words like a good craftsman lays bricks: precisely and neat- 
ly, and with the effect pleasing in detail and substantial 
overall. And brick-laying is a most beneficial occupation as 
a hobby as well as a trade. 

In The Years at the Spring, by Ruth Vail, there is a poem 
which I liked particularly, "The Sea Magic." It contains these 

We hear the cold surf -notes on the restless sea 
On moonstruck sands, 

For the little while we are standing here together 
Clasping each other's hands. 

This and some of Mrs. Vail's other sea poems prompt me 
to generalize that our poets who write in fulfillment of an 
urge to capture the life and the scenes and the moods about 
them would be better off coping with the woods and the 
waves and those other evidences of our frontiers and our 
trails and giving less attention to the reflections and specula- 
tions that could, ever so often, be quite adequately expressed 
in a sigh, or perhaps an oath. 

Unusually successful in the many competitions open to 
poets has been Charlotte Young, here represented by The 
Heart Has Many Reasons. I found in "Requiem" a quality 
all its own: 

224 The North Carolina Historical Review 

Rivers shall hurry down to the ocean, 

Trade winds relentlessly sweep, 
The earth shall turn in two-fold motion— 

And I shall sleep and sleep. . . . 

The Farmer will rise in the grey dawn weather, 

The lark will shape her low nest, 
Philosophers piece the cosmos together— 

But I shall rest and rest. . . . 

Many, many of the verses in these neatly printed volumes 
are parochial, with moralities simplified into utter unreality. 
(Where do people get the idea that morals come easily?) 
Nearly all the writers have a habit of presenting stock phrases 
with which they are accustomed to evoking conditioned re- 
sponses. Sometimes one does not have to read; one merely 
drowses and is lulled into a kind of euphoria. Listen: "dimpl- 
ed knees," "smoothwhite shoulder," "fragile spires of 
thought," "tear-filled voice," "my daddy's dear face," "rich 
fertile soil." The poems become almost interchangeable— 
and so, for that matter, are the critical plaudits on the dust 
jackets. Here one finds "girlish lips," "wishful face," "lovely 
thoughts," "tender dreams," "happy heart," "silver night," 
"pale pearl moon." 

But there is the other side of the ledger. In one of the books 
I found what seemed to be pleasant, refreshing naivete; sever- 
al short items elsewhere recalled the gem-like works of the 
Japanese and Chinese; individual strength stands out in scat- 
tered offerings. The free verse is, I think, generally the most 

Most of these North Carolina poems look with trust and 
hope upon a world that often seems cruel. And that I will 
not have the hardihood to disavow. 

By Leonard B. Hurley 

In the play Hamlet when the elderly, extremely talkative, 
and somewhat tedious old Polonius, about to give before the 
Danish court at Elsinore a long speech that will have the 
exordium, the narrative part, and the peroration, says near 
its beginning 

Since brevity is the soul of wit [meaning wisdom] 
and tediousness the limbs and outward nourishes, 
I will be brief, 

Then Queen Gertrude, who on the whole loves the old cour- 
tier, and knows full well that he seldom can be brief, kindly 

More matter and less art. 

As one who certainly was never noted for his wit (meaning 
wisdom), nor for essential brevity, and who is now called 
upon to review twenty-eight books of a most varied nature 
in little more than as many minutes, I am painfully conscious 
that I must follow the Queen's advice— get in matter at the 
expense of art in the getting in, and yet that in so doing I 
can hardly hope to escape the tediousness which makes "the 
limbs and outward flourishes." But, I am somewhat comfort- 
ed by a speech that comes a little later in the play, wherein 
after Hamlet has instructed old Polonius to look well after 
the entertainment of the players who have come by invita- 
tion to visit the court, Polonius replies: 

My Lord, I will use them according to their desert, 
Hamlet cries 

God's bodykin's man, much better ! Use every 
man after his desert and who shall 'scape whipping ? 
Use them after your own honor and dignity. The 
less they deserve, the more merit is in your bounty. 
Take them in. 


226 The North Carolina Historical Review 

I feel assured that this august assembly will use me so— not 
after my desert, no matter how little that may be, but accord- 
ing to its own honor and dignity, with the merit all in its 
own bounty. 

Five years ago Mr. William T. Polk pointed out to this 
group on just such an occasion as this, that North Carolina 
could fairly be termed a state of writing. Four years ago Mrs. 
Dorothy G. Thorne observed that if the previous year had 
been that in which North Carolina writers discovered tobacco, 
1950 was the year in which they discovered great men- 
eleven out of the twenty-eight books in fields other than fic- 
tion and poetry that year having been biographical studies. 
In 1951 Professor Frontis W. Johnston expressed satisfaction 
in his inability to find any common denominator for the 
eighteen volumes he had examined, inasmuch as the infi- 
nite riches of variety was only to be expected from a state so 
celebrated for varied resources. In 1952 Mr. Legette Blythe 
was pleased that he had not found it possible to divide books 
into well-defined categories— noting that each stood alone, 
differing in many respects from its fellows, because each 
was the work of an individual seeing things and recording 
them in his own individual way. And last year Mr. Hoke 
Norris spoke of his gratification in having met forty or more 
North Carolina writers attending a single writers' conference, 
in Boone in August; emphasized the amazing and fruitful 
revelation that had come to him in reading the twenty-one 
books submitted in the competition for the Mayflower award; 
and pointed out that North Carolina had long before passed 
from Mr. Mencken's Sahara of the Bozart region to assume 
a position of some leadership in the Southern Literary 

Now, this year I can but follow in their footsteps, to pro- 
claim again the rich variety of the year's offerings, to testify 
once more to the difficulty of the task facing those who would 
read these works for a comparative evaluation, to confess 
to having made a brave initial attempt to review each book, 
only to fall back eventually before the limits of time allotted 
here, which brings the necessity for little more than bare 

North Carolina Non-Fiction Books, 1953-1954 227 

mention of some books, a very brief comment on others, and 
a somewhat longer but still relatively brief examination of 
a few; and for convenience, somewhat arbitrarily to arrange 
them in groups after the general fashion of library classifi- 
cation, while realizing that no such arrangement can be al- 
together satisfactory or feasible. 

There are twenty-eight books in this year's harvest. Six 
of these were brought out by a university press - one each 
by Cornell, Duke, Harvard, Louisana State, the University 
of Chicago, and the University of North Carolina Press. A 
dozen or more were published by nationally known publish- 
ing firms including Dial Press, Doubleday, Abingdon-Cokes- 
bury, Samuel French, Harpers, Lippincotts, Little-Brown, 
MacMillan, Scribners, Broadman, and William Morrow. Oth- 
ers were printed by less well-known firms, were privately 
printed, or were published by societies or organized groups 
—including the Philosophical Library, the Exposition Press, 
the Divers Press, the North Carolina Grange, a North Caro- 
lina church, and the State Department of Archives and His- 

No specific trends are to be noted. Perhaps there were 
fewer biographies and autobiographical studies. Only two of 
the books are by women, and both of these, Mrs. Ella Earl 
Cotton and Miss Ruby F. Johnston, are educated, cultivated 
women of the Negro race, who are now, or have been, work- 
ers in education and in social fields. Seven of the books are 
by ministers, at least twelve by teachers, two by newspaper 
editors. Nearly half could be classified as books of a scholarly 
nature— in a sense the product of scholarly research, includ- 
ing texts. It might also be said that in comparison with the 
books of several recent years, there is this year less concen- 
tration on North Carolina, although several of the best of 
the books do deal with the State in the past or the present or 
in both. For example, in comparison with 1951 when eight 
out of eighteen books had decided connection with North 
Carolina, this year only eight out of twenty-eight do, where- 
as twenty have little connection with North Carolina other 
than that of having been produced by a North Carolinian. 

228 The North Carolina Historical Review 

But enough of preliminaries. Let us turn to the books them- 

First, let us consider books having a religious aspect, books, 
that is, that bear in some way on religious themes. At least 
nine such books are to be found in the offering for the year 
—possibly ten, though several of these might also be classified 
as historical works or as social history. Seven of these books 
are by North Carolina ministers. Suppose we start with a 
practical, yet deeply moving book on the art and science of 
preaching, pass thence to four books of sermons, consider 
briefly a work dealing with the relation of religion to the 
treatment of alcoholics, and move then to several books that 
combine the theme of religion with the social and historical 

The True and Lively Word, A Practical Guide to Effective 
Preaching, by James T. Cleland is made up of five lectures 
delivered in February, 1953, to the Episcopal Theological 
School in Cambridge, Massachusetts. They are "The Words 
of the Bible," "The Word of God," "The Word of the World," 
"The Word and the Words of the Preacher," and "The Word 
in the Believer." In these the writer says he has sought to 
outline, what, as he sees it, preaching is all about: "its start- 
ing point; its content; its setting; its exponent; its outcome." 
He takes as its starting point this difinition of a sermon: "A 
manifestation of the Incarnate Word, from the Written 
Word, by the Spoken Word." Every sermon, Dr. Cleland 
maintains, must explain the ways of God and must at the 
same time show understanding of human affairs and human 
interests. It must be addressed not to a theologian but to 
the layman in language and terms that the average member 
of the congregation can understand. He emphasizes the need 
of the process of digging through, turning up and testing a 
passage of scripture that the real word of God may be found 
therein. Constantly must the minister draw the eternal out 
of the temporal and, in reverse order, the temporal out of 
the eternal, and above all he must himself "he the word re- 
incarnated." Dr. Cleland is Professor of Preaching in the 
Duke University Divinity School and Preacher to the Uni- 

North Carolina Non-Fiction Books, 1953-1954 229 

versity; and these lectures which, as the Christian Century 
observes, are "lectures on preaching delivered to Episcopal 
students by a Presbyterian who normally writes for the 
Methodists" seemed a good work with which to begin, since 
"with this ecumenical start one expects a broadly intelligent 
treatment," and that expectation is not disappointed. 

Of the four volumes of sermons among this years' books, 
the first I would mention is that by the Reverend John A. 
Redhead, entitled Getting to Know God— Sixteen Sermons to 
Make Him Real to You. Dr. Redhead begins his simple but 
forceful series with the sermon that gives his volume its title, 
"Getting to Know God-What is God Like, Who is He? Where 
is He? How can a Man Get to Know Him?"— follows this with 
three sermons entitled "A God Who Grows," "A Glimpse of 
God," "Look at God Through Christ," then comes to "Path- 
ways to God," followed by six sermons, one each on The 
Wisdom— ,The Love—, The Will—, The Power—, The Provi- 
dence—, and the Holiness of God. He passes thence to three 
sermons on "The Triumphant God," "The Saving God," and 
"The Healing God," and concludes with two sermons, "The 
God of All Comfort" and "The God of All Grace." Choosing 
four texts from the Old Testament and twelve from the New, 
the author sets forth in uncomplicated style, in straightfor- 
ward language, and with a wealth of assurance his conception 
of the way men must follow to come to know God through 
his son, Jesus Christ. 

A second, and a most interesting volume of sermons, is 
found in The Mandate To Humanity, by the Reverend Ed- 
win McNeill Poteat, with its subtitle The Ten Command 
ments, Divine Imperatives For Man and Society, An Inquiry 
into the History and Meaning of the Ten Commandments and 
Their Relation to Contemporary Culture. The volume recalls, 
and I think compares very favorably with, Dr. Poteat's vol- 
ume of 1951, The Parables of Crises, in which he also in- 
quired into the history and meaning of sixteen of the last 
parables of Jesus in a discussion which greatly stressed the 
times in which these parables were spoken and the com- 
parable tensions of the mid-twentieth century. Again "his 

230 The North Carolina Historical Review 

approach is that of the scholar; his aim that of the pastor," 
for Dr. Poteat reasons well, fills his pages with shrewd ob- 
servation, proves continually interesting, writes with clarity 
and at times in sparkling style, but seldom with moving 
simplicity, though nearly always with a real, imaginative 
choice of words. For many, I think, the book will not read 

One notes that here Dr. Poteat presents his discussion of 
the ten commandments in sixteen chapters. The first three 
chapters: "The Right to Command," "Man Meets God," and 
"No Other God," deal with the bases on which man recog- 
nizes the will and the right of God to give commandments, 
and deal with the first great commandment— Thou Shall Have 
No Other Gods before me— and this is seen as the result of 
monolatry rather than monotheism or polytheism. Chapter 
four, "Man's Other Gods," is presented in the author's words 
as something of a parenthesis, a recapitulation for purpose 
of keeping continuity clear, and deals with man's Other God, 
the ego, the thing within himself which tricks him into false 
ideas about the good. Chapter Five, "The Image Problem," 
deals with the Second Commandment, and chapter six, 
"The Jealously of God" and seven, "The Name of God," deal 
with the third. And these first three commandments, says Dr. 
Poteat, "are more profitably understoond as three parts of 
one great commandment." Chapter seven, "The Sabbath 
Day," deals with the Fourth Commandment— one as long as, 
and much more detailed than, the first three taken together, 
and chapter nine deals with the Fifth Commandment which 
sets up the importance of the family. Chapter ten, "Our 
Moral Bill of Rights," is again a parenthetic chapter pointing 
forward to the four maxims which follow in the great Man- 
date, exposing the problem of Morality in its simple essence. 
And chapters eleven, "The Right to Life," and twelve, "The 
Right to Integrity," thirteen, "The Right to Property," and 
fourteen, "The Right to Justice" deal with the Sixth through 
the Ninth Commandments, Thou Shalt Not Kill, Commit 
Adultery, Steal, Bear False Witness. The Tenth Command- 
ments which as our writer says "falls back to an attitude of 

North Carolina Non-Fiction Books, 1953-1954 231 

mind and for that reason does not belong with group six 
through nine" is considered in Chapter Fifteen, and the final 
chapter, "Conclusion," sums up the whole discussion. 
Throughout these sixteen chapters, readers will observe, Dr. 
Poteat brings into sharp focus the stern conflict between 
Marxist and Hebrew-Christian concepts of man's moral na- 
ture. And in his excellent and informative fourteen-page In- 
troduction the writer deals with what he says, "Nowadays any 
effort to set forth what the biblical record has to say must be- 
gin with:" namely "an understanding of a literary problem 
that is involved in its history." This solid book of two hundred 
thirty-one pages is longer and more complex than the two al- 
ready reviewed, or, I believe, than the one to follow. The 
book is dedicated to Dr. Poteat's congregation of the Pullen 
Memorial Baptist Church, Raleigh. 

A third book of sermons, I must treat more briefly: The 
Rev. J. Winston Pearce's I Believe: Twelve Studies in the 
Christian Faith. Here is a small volume of one hundred twen- 
ty pages. Dr. Pearce, pastor of the First Baptist Church in 
Durham, beginning with a sermon "What a Great Faith Will 
Do For You," continues with eleven sermons each of which 
uses the words of the title I Believe: I believe in God,— in 
Jesus Christ,— in the Holy Spirit, in the Incarnation,— in the 
Forgiveness of Sin,— in The Church,— in Prayer,— in The 
Priesthood of All Believers,— in The Bible,— in The Resur- 
rection,— in Continuing Incarnation. In informal, readable 
style, with apt references and an abundance of illustrative 
stories, a devout minister, through giving his own personal 
beliefs, reaffirms what he conceives to be the heart of Chris- 
tian faith. 

A volume almost twice the length of I Believe is found in 
the fourth book of sermons or related religious essays, Billy 
Graham's Peace With God: How To Choose in The Hour 
of Decision. Here the material is arranged in three divisions 
each containing six discussions averaging ten to fifteen pages 
in length: Part One-The Problem; Part Two-The Solution; 
Part Three— The Result. As the New York Times recently 
stated: "Mr Graham speaks and writes for the average man. 

232 The North Carolina Historical Review 

His is the 'old time religion/ full of fire and enthusiasm, the 
Bible-preaching of American Protestantism from frontier to 
TV." This book of sermons, which as the author says in his 
preface has "literally been prepared on our knees," presents 
an analysis of the teachings of this well-recognized funda- 
mentalist evangelist— teachings, we should probably remem- 
ber, which have a wide currency because of the weekly ra- 
dio talks "Hour of Decision" and because of his evangelistic 
campaigns in many cities in the United States and abroad. 
Believing that people today are disorganized, bewildered, 
and frightened because they are sinful; and that the divine 
wisdom of God as set forth in His word has in it all that 
man needs for a good life, a peaceful life, and for salvation; 
that man if he will but read the Word will have made peace 
with God and will be saved from eternal damnation; Graham 
here sets forth his creed in detail. 

A somewhat more specialized book having a religious 
theme is found in Dr. George Aiken Taylor's A Sober Faith, 
Religion and Alcoholics Anonymous. Seeing that belief in 
God and a willingness to let God help is a basic belief and 
attitude in those who work through Alcoholics Anonymous; 
that the program of this group is basically a simple one com- 
pletely founded on spiritual principles, a program consisting 
of twelve definitely outlined steps; recognizing that this pro- 
gram quite clearly has a close kinship with religion but that 
Alcoholics Anonymous has succeeded with cures where the 
church has failed, Dr. Taylor wished to know whether those 
in this organization had found something in religion, some- 
thing whose presence was hitherto unsuspected, and so he 
probes into this question and analyzes each of the twelve 
steps to show its parallel to religion and to suggest how each 
—the church and Alcoholics Anonymous— many benefit from 
the other. 

We turn now to four books which combine with the church 
—or the religious —note, the historical or sociological theme. 
First a work entitled— The Presbyterian Congregation on 
Rocky River. This rather solidly written book of more than 
two hundred pages, which the author Thomas Hugh Spence, 

North Carolina Non-Fiction Books, 1953-1954 233 

Jr. dedicates to his father, a native born Scot who was past- 
or of Rocky River Church 1916-1931, tells the story of 
this congregation near Concord through the course of two 
centuries, from its foundation by the vanguard of the sturdy 
Scotch-Irish who poured into the region in the eighteenth 
century, many of them to settle on the banks of this river 
and its branches, on to the present. The book is relatively well 
organized and is written in a clear, straightforward pleasing 
style; it amply illustrates the development through the years 
in North Carolina of a phase of life that has added to the 
stature and to the richness of spirit in this region. 

Two other books that have connection with the religious 
theme and with the social or historical are the Development 
of Negro Religion, by Ruby F. Johnston, and Negro Slave 
Songs of the United States, by Dr. Miles Mark Fisher. The 
first of these, published by the Philosophical Library, New 
York, is arranged in two parts. First, "A Condensed History of 
Negro Religion," presented in two chapters; and second, "Re- 
ligion in Transition," presented in seven chapters. Miss John- 
ston states as the aim of her study: ". . . to present functional 
aspects of the Christian religion among contemporary Ameri- 
can Negroes ... to demonstrate the origin and development 
of the concept of Christianity among Negroes, and to point 
out the progress of change in belief and action conditioned 
by the social environment in which this evolution occurred." 
She finds that in the course of time certain features of re- 
ligion were accentuated among the American Negroes, that 
in an effort to adjust members to "perplexing, baffling, stag- 
gering experiences in a new world, a distinct flavor in re- 
ligious manifestation developed from the social background 
and habitat of a transplanted people . . . submerged feelings 
unexperienced in real-life situations found an outlet in intense 
emotional expression in the church. Desire for recognition 
. . . security unfulfilled in everyday activities received fulfill- 
ment . . . instruments for procurement of freedom were tor- 
mented in the church. Religion became the way of life." 
Hence Miss Johnston's objective becomes in her words, "to 
give major consideration to these functions— emotional, psy- 

234 The North Carolina Historical Review 

etiological, social— as the Negro conceived them at various 
periods, with an account of the modifications, subordinance, 
and displacement of one form by another as the goals of the 
race were achieved in the American cultural setting as the 
American society itself underwent metamorphosis." This 
study, based as it is on a social survey made of Negro 
churches in Boston, Massachusetts, and in South Carolina- 
three rural churches in or near Orangeburg, S. C, served by 
a single pastor— is really more a sociological than a religious 
work. It presents some interesting material for those who 
would understand the Negro in our world today. 

Negro Slave Songs of the United States is a scholarly study 
published by the Cornell University Press for the American 
Historical Association, Its author, Dr. Miles Mark Fisher, is 
both teacher and preacher— Professor of Church History at 
Shaw University, Pastor of White Rock Baptist Church in 
Durham. The present work is the outgrowth of, and revision 
of, a doctoral dissertation prepared in the Divinity School of 
the University of Chicago. It is Dr. Fisher's thesis that, "the 
so-called 'Slave Songs' of the United States are best under- 
stood when they are considered as expressions of individual 
Negroes which can be dated and assigned to a geographical 
locale. They are, in brief, historical documents. As such they 
reflect Negro behavior which as Frederick Law Olmstead con- 
cluded in 1860, emphasized African background patterns ra- 
ther than the Christianity of the nineteenth century." 

Dr. Fisher has arranged his study of Negro slave songs- 
spirituals— in nine numbered divisions. He opens with a twen- 
ty-six page discussion of "History in the Music of Negroes." 
He closes with a fifteen-page summary section of "Under- 
standing Spirituals." Between this opening and this closing 
discussion are seven numbered sections each approximately 
fourteen to twenty pages in length, each considering a group 
of spirituals but centered around an outstanding one, these 
drawn from definite periods in American history. For ex- 
ample, the first to be considered, grouped around "Sinner 
Please," are from the years 1740 to 1815; second, those group- 
ed around "Deep River" are from the years 1816 to 1831; 

North Carolina Non-Fiction Books, 1953-1954 235 

third, those centering about "Steal Away" come from the years 
1800 to 1831; next those from the fourth, fifth, and sixth sec- 
tions and centering respectively about the spirituals "You'd 
Better Min'," "I am Bound for the Promised Land," and 
"When I Die" all come from the years 1832-1867; and finally 
those grouped with "Look What a Wonder Jedus Done" rep- 
resent the years 1861 to 1867. 

In the course of this study Dr. Fisher reviews in a detailed 
manner the history of various attitudes toward Negro slave 
music or slave songs, and arrives at a conclusion that agrees 
with what he discovers to be the later approach— the histori- 
cal approach; that is to say that the slave "took a good look 
at this world and told what he saw"— that as John Lowell 
said in 1939, a "true interpretation" of spirituals held that 
they were evidences of the Negro's obsession with freedom 
and justice, and they included plans of strategy with which 
these could be achieved; and that, as V. F. Calverton has it, 
"there is more, far more than the ordinary Christian zeal 
embedded in Negro spirituals. They are not mere religious 
hymn written or recited to sweeten the service or improve 
the ritual." Rather "they are the aching, poignant cry of an 
entire people." So, says Dr. Fisher in the concluding para- 
graphs of his introductory chapter, "That negro spirituals 
are historical documents from the negro people may be 
postulated in five statements: The primary function of Afri- 
can Music was to give the history of a people; African Ne- 
groes were transplanted to the Americas along with their 
gifts of song; the first extended collection of slave songs was 
advertised as historical documents from the negro people; 
such an evolution of slave songs was perceived by divers 
people; Negro spirituals are best understood in harmony with 
this historical interpretation." 

One other scholarly study in this category I would men- 
tion as a most impressive work among the year's books, The 
Russian Church and the Soviet State, by Dr. John Shelton 
Curtis. Dr. Curtis maintains an attitude of scrupulous ob- 
jectivity as he tells with extraordinary clarity a most complex 
story, that of the changing position of the Russian Orthodox 

236 The North Carolina Historical Review 

Church in relation to the Soviet State from 1917 down to the 
end of the year 1950. This last-named date was chosen be- 
cause, by that time, the author declares "the revolutionary as- 
pects of the relationship had ended, and, after the striking de- 
velopments during World War II, a modus Vivendi that 
promises to have considerable duration has been established 
... no significant changes appear to be in prospect." 

Dr. Curtis, professor of history at Duke University, has 
indeed produced a book that is a superb piece of scholarship. 
The work is based on original sources discovered both in 
America and in Europe. It deals with a problem about which, 
I am told, specialists in the Russian field have long been lack- 
ing information, and hence is likely to be regarded as the 
definitive work on the subject so long as Soviet records re- 
main closed to western scholars. I know that some of these 
scholars find the style of the work, though not inferior to 
that in the average monograph, yet not quite on the same 
high level with its scholarship; and feel that though the na- 
ture of the material is admittedly not of the type that lends 
itself to vivid and dramatic treatment, some parts of the 
study seem much richer than others. For example, the 
treatment of the first ten year period to 1928 is on the whole 
much more impressive than that given the following twenty- 
three years, and that even if the official Soviet sources be- 
came, as the author says 'less abundant' after that year, that 
these, nevertheless might have been supplemented with profit 
by the contribution which stories of Soviet emigrants as liv- 
ing witnesses— especially after 1938— would probably have 
made. Despite the claim on the book-jacket that the work 
"will interest the general reader as well as the entire theologi- 
cal audience" one may with reason suspect that only that por- 
tion of the theological audience which is directly concerned 
with religious problems behind the iron curtain will be 
drawn to it, and that the average reader will not find it of 
great appeal. It is, as I have said, a thorough and a scholarly 
work, carefully documented, well balanced, and on the whole, 
material interestingly presented. It should greatly please his- 

North Carolina Non-Fiction Books, 1953-1954 237 

Now, having spoken of six books with religious themes, 
and four that combine religion and the church with historical 
and social themes, I turn from these ten to ask your attention 
to another group of ten whose primary interest is history, or 
history and biography. Let us begin here with a short work 
on an early North Carolina charter, pass to an excellent his- 
tory of North Carolina from the earliest years to the present, 
and then roughly following chronological order, consider a 
work dealing with the Revolutionary War period, one con- 
cerned with the Civil War period, one concerned with more 
restricted but important events in North Carolina in the years 
1900-1911, one that covers the years 1912 to the 1940's but 
stresses the period 1912-1920; one that considers a specialized 
phase of the state's progress from 1929 to the present, and 
two that stress biographical themes outside this country or 
outside this state. 

The Carolina Charter of 1663— How It Came to North 
Carolina and Its Place in History, by William S. Powell, is 
an extremely interesting and a most attractively arranged 
small book of seventy-nine pages published by the State De- 
partment of Archives and History. Ownership of this early 
charter now makes North Carolina one of seven states posses- 
sing copies of their original charters. This book is primarily 
concerned with telling the story of how this original docu- 
ment of 1663 was acquired by the state, rather than with 
narrating the history of the granting of this seventeenth cen- 
tury charter to the Eight Lord Proprietors by King Charles 
II. But something of that phase of the story is also told. The 
narrative proper which runs to only twenty pages is in two 
sections: how the Charter came to North Carolina; and the 
origin of the Charter. The full text of the four-page charter 
follows, comprising some fifteen printed pages of this little 
volume. The text is followed then, by biographical sketches 
of the eight Lords Proprietors, all personal friends of the 
King. Portraits of seven of these proprietors are given, Sir 
John Colleton being the only one not shown. Also given 
here are portraits of King Charles II and of John Locke, au- 
thor of the Fundamental Constitutions drawn up for the 

238 The North Carolina Historical Review 

Carolinas under the direction of the Earl of Shaftsbury and 
adopted by the proprietors on July 21, 1669. Numerous other 
interesting illustrations and several interesting maps are in- 
cluded. The work is furnished with an excellent bibliography. 

The most solid work in history among the books this year 
is, without doubt, a very impressive volume running to more 
than six hundred and fifty pages, entitled North Carolina, 
The History of a Southern State, by Hugh Talmage Lefler 
and the late Albert Ray Newsome. Except for school texts this 
is the first one-volume history of North Carolina that has 
appeared in this century. It is, moreover, the first single vol- 
ume history of this state to be written by professional histor- 
ians. Dr. Lefler is— as Dr. Newsome was— professor of history 
at the University of North Carolina. The work is published 
by the University of North Carolina Press. 

The book has balance and proportion, as well as good nar- 
rative style— an essentially readable style— and excellent doc- 
umentation. It is a most scholarly work. Most readers will 
praise the book's proportional allotment of space and empha- 
sis to well-defined periods in the state's development and in 
national history. For example, of its nearly six hundred pages 
of text, two hundred pages, or twelve chapters, are accorded 
to the years from the beginnings up to the outbreak of the 
American Revolution; two hundred and twelve pages, or 
seventeen chapters, are given to the years from 1775 up to the 
outbreak of the Civil War; and one hundred seventy-eight 
pages, or seventeen chapters, are allotted the years 1861 up to 
and including the national and state elections of 1952. There 
will undoubtedly be some readers, however, who will hold 
that the section dealing with the twentieth century is on the 
whole somewhat less satisfying than the first two-thirds of the 
volume, and may wonder if this is not partly to be accounted 
for by the fact that the events of the past ninety-three years 
since the outbreak of the Civil War are accorded slightly less 
space than that given the eighty-five years between 1775 and 
1861. But other forms of balance and proportion are also well 
maintained; for example, between the history of the state in 
political and military affairs on the one hand, and its develop- 

North Carolina Non-Fiction Books, 1953-1954 239 

ment in agriculture, trade, transportation, industry, education, 
social organization, religion and literature on the other. 

Throughout, the story of North Carolina is told as records 
reveal it, beginning with the earliest voyages in the explora- 
tion in the sixteenth century and coming down or up essen- 
tially to the present— and told, as I have said, in first-rate 
narrative style. But, whereas, the narrative method predomi- 
nates the authors never hesitate to evaluate, to praise, or to 
criticize wherever they feel the need so to do. The reader 
notes with satisfaction, too, that within the the narrative quo- 
tations are used with telling effect. These are never overdone, 
but wherever the authors sense that the words of individuals 
living in a period or participating in an event would point-up 
its depiction, they have used them both frequently and effec- 
tively. Since the authors state that they have been primarily 
interested in showing how North Carolinians have through 
the years lived and made a living and our attention is thus 
kept on the people in their state, these quotations, so aptly 
used serve their purpose well. Perhaps their relative absence 
from, or at least their less frequent use in, the last quarter of 
the book would help to account for the relative— but only 
relative— thinness of that part. 

All in all this is a scholarly study of the first rank, com- 
prehensive, well-balanced, and very readable, the product of 
more than five years of carefully planned work. I believe the 
volume was in part designed as a college text. As such it will 
be valuable. But this well-rounded history of North Carolina 
will be of great interest and value also to the general reader. 

Another brief but quite good historical study is Clark Wil- 
liam Bell's The First Saratoga. Being The Saga of John Young 
and His Sloop-of-War. This is Mr. Bell's fifth book dealing 
with American naval history, and is written with all the as- 
surance customarily found in the works of this writer, known 
for his easy familiarity with colonial and revolutionary Amer- 
ica and especially as an authority on our navy in the Revolu- 
tion. In this little volume of one hundred and fifty pages 
he brings to vivid life, a largely forgotten hero of the Ameri- 
can Revolution. All that is known about this sloop-of-war in 

240 The North Carolina Historical Review 

the continental navy, and its gallant young Captain, John 
Young, is set forth with skill and verve. 

Friend of Robert Morris and Francis Lewis, companion in 
naval circles of John Paul Jones, Seth Harding, and John 
Barry, this inspiring leader of a devoted young band of naval 
officers serving the Saratoga— the first of several ships of that 
name to win fame in our naval history— experiences exciting 
adventure and achieves honor and recognition in a stirring 
and critical period. Captain Young and his sloop, it seems, 
played an important role in raids upon British ships, especial- 
ly those bringing supplies to British troops in this country. 
After these cruises filled with successful engagements and 
with spectacular victories which brought rich prizes, the 
ship and all its company disappeared during a West India 
storm in 1781. The chapters bring exciting events before us 
in swift succession. This little book, published by the Louisi- 
ana State University Press, furnishes good reading matter. 

I believe that the liveliest book of history— indeed the live- 
liest book of this year's lot— is to be found in The Civil War as 
told by James Street, in what he calls in the subtitle "An Un- 
varnished Account of the Late but Still Lively Hostilities." 
And, indeed, unvarnished and still lively is his buoyant and 
pointed account. The book is profusely illustrated in less live- 
ly, but telling fashion in line and wash drawings by John 
Allan Maxwell. The text book is arranged in eight untitled 
sections. Truly, as the jacket says, "the book is filled with 
historical asides that will amaze" the reader. It is literally 
crammed with lively anecdote, and crisply pointed up by 
what one reviewer would insist is "informed but opinionated 
data." Mr. Street would himself, I believe, be the first to 
agree that, of course, he is opinionated. His opening sentence 
reads: "Almost a hundred years after the first shot was fired, 
we Americans cannot even agree on a name for our Civil 
War Between the States, much less on what caused it or 
exactly what happened." Then he proceeds to tell us what 
caused it— and there, of course, is his opinion— and to tell 
of many of the things that happened, grim, gallant, foolish, 
well or foolishly planned and executed, and often amazing 

North Carolina Non-Fiction Books, 1953-1954 241 

or unbelievable, and to tell it, as has been said, "in prose as 
impetuously indecorous as the Yankees' departure at Bull 
To North Carolinians of my generation who began the 
growing-up process in small North Carolina towns just be- 
fore the turn of the century, towns still lying under the dark 
shadow of this great conflict ( the bloodiest in human history 
to that date) the term The War could signify only one con- 
flict. It is an experience to hear Mr. Street speak of it as he 
does here, for as the book-jacket frankly points out "Mr Street 
has a way of stalking into history's barnyards and staring at 
the sacred cows and then pinching them: of pointing to the 
black sheep, the scapegoats, the jackasses; the wise barn 
owls in the loft, and to the rats in the corn crib." Readers who 
had followed his story of the Dabney tribe in his novels dis- 
playing strange turns in our great civil conflict would be pre- 
pared for this attitude. The reader turns away from this book 
enlightened, saddened, wryly amused, half angered at times, 
but with his faith in a people unbroken. Swallowing some of 
the facts therein— or even more, some of the freely tossed- 
off opinions— will leave him with a decidedly tart, even puck- 
ered after-taste. But the reader who begins this crisply 
written book will certainly finish it, or I miss my guess. 

Let me quote: "Fifty years ago on the flat beach land of 
Kill Devil Hill near Kitty Hawk, North Carolina, twelve sec- 
onds at 10:37 o'clock on the morning of December 17, 1903, 
changed the course of the world events to come," so says Mr. 
Aycock Brown in beginning his brief monograph, The 
Birth of Aviation. "On that day," he continues, "the world's 
first power-driven heavier-than-air machine in which 
man made free, controlled and sustained flight, took off into 
a twenty-seven mile wind, climbed to an altitude of about 
ten feet and remained aloft for twelve seconds. The actual 
distance covered was only one hundred and twenty feet; 
nevertheless it was the most historic of all flights, because 
it was the first powered flight of all time and the birth of 
modern aviation." 

For the fiftieth anniversary of the great event Mr. Brown 
tells the story— as his sub-title states it "Story of the Wright 

242 The North Carolina Historical Review 

Brothers' Flights at Kitty Hawk and Kill Devil Hill, North 
North Carolina." Mr. Brown makes no attempt to give the 
life story of the two famous Wright brothers. Little attention 
is given to the days of their youth and early manhood in 
Dayton as they planned in the bicycle shop of their home 
town for glider and powered flight. Nor does he attempt to 
deal with their achievements in later life. Instead, the author 
concentrates on "their successful experience there on the 
windswept outer banks of North Carolina," the story of 
Wilbur and Orville Wright and its Kitty Hawk-Kill Devil Hill 
setting from 1900 to 1911. As to happenings that in later years 
became the subject of controversies, the writer attempts to 
present both sides of a question and leaves it at that. 

The brief text of Mr. Brown's story, given in thirty-two 
unnumbered pages, is preceded by fourteen pages— followed 
by fifteen pages— of excellent photographs, numbering fifty- 
nine in all, and spanning the half -century; the story is well 
told and well documented in words and pictures. 

We come next to what I should think has been one 
of the two most widely read books of the year that came from 
a North Carolina writer, The End of Innocence, by Jona- 
than Daniels. If, as Mr. Marquis Childs has said, Mr. 
Daniels's book of several years past, The Man of Indepen- 
dence is "brilliant political biography," I should hazard 
the opinion that The End of Innocence is equally good or 
better in that field, and as the portrait of an era— certainly 
Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr. has recently termed it Jona- 
than Daniel's best book. Jonathan Daniels has indeed had a 
unique opportunity to know the inside story of the develop- 
ment of these United States from the beginning of the Wil- 
son era through the period of President Truman. His father, 
Josephus Daniels, who is at the center of his present study, 
served in the administrations of Cleveland, of Wilson, and of 
Roosevelt. Through the eyes of one who as a young adoles- 
cent went to live in Washington with that father in the eight 
years when Wilson was in the White House, and who was 
there again as a young man, and as a mature man, as ad- 
ministrative assistant and as press secretary to Roosevelt, and 

North Carolina Non-Fiction Books, 1953-1954 243 

one who above all was close to his father through all these 
years, we here see the men and the age, concentrating mainly 
on the Wilson era. He presents his father through-out as an 
innocent in some measure, but wise with the innocence of 
faith, of genuine belief in a type of democracy whose weak- 
nesses he knew but in whose strength he firmly believed. 

That his account of these tumultuous years is less an his- 
torical than an emotional enterprise, Mr. Daniels himself 
admits; he speaks of it as "memory ridden and emotion torn." 
But if it be an emotionally informed story of the relationships 
and the interrelationships of Wilson, Bryan, Daniels, Roose- 
velt,-F. D. R. and Teddy-of Col. House, and Col. Mc- 
Cawley of the Marines, of Secretary of War Baker, and Sen- 
ator Lodge, and Col. Robert Mean Thompson of the Navy 
League, of both the first and the second Mrs. Wil- 
son, and the younger Eleanor Roosevelt, and of numerous 
others, drawn oftentimes in few but revealing lines— and 
always with emphasis on the two men he knew best and 
loved most, his father and Franklin Roosevelt, nevertheless, 
the book is a warmly human story and a most informing and 
moving one. It is truly the portrait of an era, a beautiful and 
sympathetic portrait of an era, the end of America's "innocent 
parochialism" and its entrance upon an era of World Power, 
with the big ideas, the big government which a big war 
brought, a position, as we now know, into which we moved 
to stay, and moved with the pain and the awakened knowl- 
edge that always comes in the moving from innocence into 
sophistication. Moreover, it is more than an enthralling story. 
Here we have brilliant memoir, a most carefully docu- 
mented presentation of events and the men who moved 
through them shaping them and being shaped by them. Here 
we find also, keen analysis of the working of the democratic 
system in America and an affirmation of belief in such democ- 
racy. One understands that it was not F. D. R. alone who 
learned of democracy through Josephus Daniels. 

Certainly, to this reader for one, the portrait of the de- 
veloping Roosevelt is as enthralling as that of the staunch 
old southern democrat who was his mentor, sometimes his 

244 The North Carolina Historical Review 

antagonist, always his friend— the man who, as Henry Steel 
Commager observed, "better than any other figure in public 
life linked up the Populist Era with the New Freedom, and 
then with the New Deal, remaining consistent and unspoiled 
through half a century." The writer can and does view both 
men at times critically. He shows that the two did not work 
together in the Navy Department in those early years with- 
out a good deal of stress and strain; but that they came to un- 
derstand, to like, and to trust one another he reveals clearly— 
and that the younger man learned much from the older. The 
author of End of Innocence states his conviction that 
"Roosevelt's arrival at appreciation of the meaning of such 
men as Daniels was more important than anything he [as 
Assistant Secretary of the Navy] learned under Daniels about 
dealing with labor, with steel and other magnates, with 
power in democracy in terms of the back country as well as 
of the ward rooms." To the young aristocrat, he continues, 
"there had been about Daniels almost the same deceptive ap- 
pearance which a plain strong democratic American so often 
showed to the supercilious who suddenly confronted it in 
history. Roosevelt's greatest attainment when he departed 
[from the Navy Department] was that he was no longer 
self-deceived in democracy— and would not be so deceived 

Although the book concentrates on the years from 1912 to 
the early 1920's, it does not end with the death of Wilson, 
the repudiation of the League of Nations, the coming of the 
Harding administration, and the crippling of Franklin Roose- 
velt. As the work had begun with Josephus Daniels in 1941 
at seventy-nine, Ambassador in Mexico, and had gone back 
then to 1912, so it closes with the chapter bearing the book's 
title, "End of Innocence," a chapter opening with the author 
himself on that afternoon when as assistant to Roosevelt he 
received in the White House the news of Roosevelt's death 
in Georgia, and telephoned to his father in Raleigh only to 
find that he had already purchased his ticket to Washington. 
And it moves on to the speech made by Daniels at 85 in front 
of the house in Warm Springs in which Roosevelt died, quo- 

North Carolina Non-Fiction Books, 1953-1954 245 

ting at length from that speech so clearly affirming the old 
man's faith in democracy: 

We need not be the companion of our fears. 
Only the already lost can think of our future as besieged. 
We have more to give than to guard, our powers are not 
weapons but the tools with which to build the promise of 
democracy into the purpose of mankind. . . . Sometimes that 
faith is hard to hold. Even to an old man who has seen many 
years these times seem dark. But this place is lit with cour- 
age and is illuminated with faith. 

The last chapter is to me a most provocative one, not the 
least because it so clearly bears the brand of the writer's be- 
liefs, as well as those of his father. I find these words there 
and I like them; "I set it down as my faith that only the 
Visionaries have helped the people to shape their security and 
that those who most confidently regard themselves as 
realists have retarded it." 

I find his book one of rare insight, skillful writing, enthral- 
ling warmth, and keen perception. 

Samuel Reval Spencer, Jr., assistant to the President of 
Davidson College, has given us a historical essay or mono- 
graph, a slender little volume of one hundred nine pages en- 
titled Decision for War 1917: The Laconia Sinking and the 
Zimmerman Telegram as Key Factors in the Public Reaction 
Against Germany. This work studies the facts back of an act 
which was probably the most significant act of the United 
States government in the first twenty-five years of the twen- 
tieth century— the decision to enter the First World War 
against Germany. The thesis here seems to be that following 
the break off of diplomatic relations with Germany on Febru- 
ary 3, the sinking of the ocean liner, Laconia, on February 25, 
closely followed by the publication, on February 27, of the 
Zimmerman Telegram revealing the proposal by the German 
government of an alliance with Mexico and Japan against 
the United States, caused a profound shift in pubic opinion 
in America, made Americans to feel that Germany had at- 
tacked the United States, and hence, became in their eyes 
the "overt act" on the part of Germany which made war with 

246 The North Carolina Historical Review 

her necessary, so that by April 6, the Congress, called into 
special session, in response to the Presidential recommenda- 
tion declared a state of war to exist between the United 
States and Germany. 

It is natural, no doubt, that some readers should see this 
study as an attempt "to revise the revisionists," that is, those 
historical thinkers who held sway in the 1930's, the decade 
prior to our entry into World War II. Certainly he takes 
issue with the interpretation of that decade, that the dis- 
closure of the Zimmerman message was carefully timed by 
the British; and he shows in a way that would seem to be 
conclusive that the British delivered the message as soon as 
they could. He maintains that it was not calculated cunning 
but the luck of circumstances that made the revelation of 
the message so sensational. He proves that the message was 
delivered before the sinking of the Laconia and before the 
plea by President Wilson on the day following, for armed 
neutrality. There would seem to be small doubt that the 
flaming headlines in the press immediately thereafter, as they 
blazoned the terms of the Zimmerman proposal, caused a 
powerful current in the stream of American public opinion. 
Of course, it is difficult to prove a shift in public opinion; 
and there are those who will not be persuaded by Dr. 
Spencer's argument, no doubt, because they will not give 
assent to the controlling assumptions that give him his frame 
of reference. I am not one of these, however. I found the 
book relatively convincing. Certainly, the author presents 
an interesting study of significant events. 

Another work in the field of history, this item specialized 
twentieth century history, I must mention briefy. An organi- 
zation numbering twelve thousand members all interested in 
agricultural pursuits, these coming from fifty-five countries 
and organized in two hundred local units "representing the 
major farming interests in all sections" of North Carolina, 
an organization that can rightfully boast a quarter century 
of varied and constructive public service rounded out its 
twenty-fifth anniversary on September 27, 1954. To review 
its history during these years Dr. Stuart Noblin, Associate 

North Carolina Non-Fiction Books, 1953-1954 247 

Professor of History and Political Science at the North Caro- 
lina State College, has written an interesting and informative 
booklet, The Grange in North Carolina, 1929-1954, A Story 
of Agricultural Progress. Beginning with a brief section called 
The Old Grange, Dr. Noblin recounts the founding in Guil- 
ford County in 1873— only six years after the birth of the Na- 
tional Grange— of the first North Carolina Grange or Patrons 
of Husbandry, the subsequent brief surge of interest and 
power in the movement only to recede before the mounting 
force of the Farmer's Alliance— Populist combination and the 
founding of a Department of Agriculture. Subsequent sections 
deal with "Reorganization," in the early fall of 1929 with 
Clarence Poe as leader; "Depression," the hard years in the 
early thirties, yet the steady growth of the grange under W. 
Kerr Scott; "New Deal' -the Grange from 1933 to 1937 un- 
der Earl S. Vanatta and Ben F. Wilson; "The War Years," the 
Grange under Harry B. Caldwell, 1937 to 1946; and "Since 
The War," the grange at work— the longest and most varied 
section of its history— the grange under Margaret H. Caldwell 
in the year 1946-47 and again her husband's direction, 1947 
to the present. The sketch closes with the section "Silver An- 
niversary"— a summary. An appendix lists state conventions- 
date and place, national conventions held in North Carolina, 
officers and divisional leaders, executive committees, Direc- 
tors of the Grange Mutual Fire Insurance Association of 
North Carolina, and awards granted during these years for 
distinguished service to agriculture. 

Two works in this category remain to be considered— one 
in biographical history, one in sociological autobiography. The 
biographical history, one that challenges attention, is the 
work of Charles Richard Sanders of the Department of Eng- 
lish, Duke University, The Strachey Family, 1588-1932; Their 
Writings and Literary Associations, published by the Duke 
University Press. I find this truly an engrossing book and 
have all too little time to speak of it here. The author an- 
nounces his purpose thus: "To study humanity as it has dis- 
played itself in the life of a comparatively small but highly 
interesting family over a period of about three hundred years 

248 The North Carolina Historical Review 

is the main object of the book." It presents the varied history 
of the versatile and gifted Strachey family through many gen- 
erations. Beginning with Elizabethan times— 1588, the year of 
the Spanish Armada— it passes quickly to William Strachey, 
who was in the great storm in July, 1609, that wrecked the 
fleet of Sir George Somers near the Bermudas, and who from 
Jamestown in July of the following year sent home a letter that 
is believed to have given Shakespeare material for the first 
act of The Tempest, and who became Lord De La Warr's 
secretary in Jamestown and thus the first secretary to an 
American colony, and it then moves through the centuries 
and the generations of Stracheys to arrive eventually at the 
Honorable John Strachey, who now in the days of the Second 
Elizabeth is a leader in the British Labor Party. We follow 
the Stracheys not only through the centuries but over the 
world, for their travels, their exploits, their residences were 
varied, and their interests and works wide spread. Dr. San- 
ders may be interested mainly in the contributions of the 
family to literature— for as he says, the Stracheys were a 
writing family— a family with a genius for friendships and 
their friendships among men of the literary world as well as 
the world of public life were many and varied: with John 
Donne, with the Elder Crashaw, with John Locke, with men 
of the Enlightenment, with Robert Southey and Walter Sav- 
age Landor, with Carlyle and Kitty Kirkpatrick, with Ed- 
ward Lear of nonsense-verse fame— to mention but a few— 
and always the author shares their interests and exploits in 
travel and exploration, in science, in government and parli- 
amentarianism and diplomacy, in the Empire, in fine arts, 
in the Church, in sanitation, finance, legal systems and even 
railroads. Always the Stracheys made their mark and always 
they left the imprint of a strong personality. From William 
Strachey then, author of The True Repository, and The His- 
tory of Virginia, down through the years to J. St. Loe Strachey, 
powerful editor of The Spectator from 1898 to 1925 and 
to Giles Lytton Strachey, author, literary critic, and emi- 
nent biographer with whose death in 1932 the story virtually 
closes, the author, in ingenious though somewhat loosely 

North Carolina Non-Fiction Books, 1953-1954 249 

coordinated fashion, follows his purpose of studying human- 
ity as it develops in such a family over three hundred years 
—a remarkably interesting and yet in not a few ways, a typi- 
cal upper class English family of distinction. Upon conclud- 
ing the volume, the interested reader may well understand 
why the Strachey name in England is a symbol for the con- 
tinuity of a people and a nation, such continuity as the old 
stone Manorhouse at Sutton Court, Somersetshire, and the 
wide-spread, deeply-based, persistent and continuous ex- 
ploits of the family it housed and sent forth represent. 

An unusual book in the field of history and autobiography 
is found in Ella Earl Cotten's A Spark for My People, with its 
sub-title A Sociological Autobiography of a Negro Teacher. 
In this little volume a dedicated woman— child of a marriage 
in 1880's between an independent young farmer in the Blue 
Ridge Mountains of Virginia and a young colored girl who 
was a servant in his plantation home— tells the story of her 
childhood in the care of an unusual negro grandfather and 
grandmother, of her education at Knoxville College, of her 
marriage and motherhood, and of her forty years with her 
husband as both taught in the rural sections of the deep 
south. Eventually in Alabama, under the auspices of the 
United Presbyterian Church, as leaders in the school set-up 
they have their great opportunity to put theories into prac- 
tice; and there they achieve a truly fine school spirit and 
community spirit and help to raise the educational level of 
an entire rural community. 

In her foreword the author says, "Viewing the book 
in the same light as I would if someone else wrote it, the more 
appealing aspects of it, to me, would be in the long, continu- 
ous period of service in virgin soil, educationally. Equally as 
important, perhaps more, was the fact that good race re- 
lationships were possible and that life and labor could be 
worked out in a pattern of happiness for all around." 

She dedicates her book to the colored teachers of the ele- 
mentary level in the thirteen southern states, the audience for 
whom the book was prayerfully written. 

Here is a tale told with relative simplicity, always without 

250 The North Carolina Historical Review 

bitterness and without self-satisfaction or anything border- 
ing on conceit— told seemingly with a sense of deep dedica- 
tion to her people and particularly to the cause of education 
for them. Any one of us, I believe, could read the book with 

Two books, Quintology and Mayan Letters, I find hard to 
classify. Quintology is a title coined by the author, J. Ray 
Shute, for a volume of five "themes on the same subject" as 
he puts it— really addresses in which liberalism and democ- 
racy are equated— as "Twin Lamps which have lighted the 
pathway of freedom down through the ages." Mayan Letters 
by Charles Olsen, contains seventeen letters written from the 
Yucatan by this historian and poet in the months February 
through July 1951, and edited by Robert Creely. Desiring to 
break away from what seemed to him the too simple West- 
ernism stemming from our Greek culture, to move back, ever 
back, to a point of origin which would be capable of extend- 
ing "history" in a new and more usable sense, to do more to- 
ward repossessing himself of the Indian past in the effort to 
find a civilization anterior to that which he has come from, 
the writer appears to feel that he has found that world in 
the Mayan. 

Six books remain from our list. Each of these is in its way 
an impressive work. Four of them— in a sense all six of them 
—are the products of scholarly research. Three of them are 
in the field of science or social science— anthropology, soci- 
ology, psychology; three of them in the field of literature and 
the social world. Each of these books really deserves detailed 
comment. Yet I can but mention most of them briefly and 
then choose one for slightly longer but still relatively brief 

In Culture and Personality, John J. Honigman, anthropolo- 
gist, writes a text book for those who would study in this new 
field, Culture and Personality— a synthetic or cross-discipline, 
not an insulated department of social science, as he explains; 
—a cross-discipline in which present knowledge reflects the 
work of psychologists, psychiatrists, sociologists, and an- 
thropologists; "a young and rapidly expanding field of study," 

North Carolina Non-Fiction Books, 1953-1954 251 

in which as the author observes, "the sum and organization of 
knowledge barely remains unchanged from one issue of a 
technical journal to the next." It would seem to be a quite 
good text. 

In The Human Animal, by Winston La Barre, another an- 
thropologist, Professor at Duke University, writes in more 
popular fashion— a fashion which combines sound scholar- 
ship with a quite readable style, clear and unusually intelli- 
gible for such a scientific work, a style free of technical jargon 
and lightened with not infrequent touches of humor. With 
definite purpose in mind the author integrates for the lay 
readers the minimum essentials of human biology, cultural 
anthropology, psychiatry and cognate fields. Believing that 
to be a responsible member of the human race, one must un- 
derstand human nature, must have self-knowledge; and that 
one cannot today possess the necessary self-knowledge with- 
out a reasonable comprehension of man's biological, cultural 
and psychological inheritance, the author considers it the 
obligation of the scientist to "proletarianize" his field in 
order to give the general reader this most essential knowl- 
edge. And this Mr. La Barre does with most interesting 

In an unusual book The Personality of Shakespeare: A Ven- 
ture in Psychological Method, Harold Greer McCurdy, As- 
sociate Professor of Psychology at the University of North 
Carolina, combines an experimental study in psychological 
method with an approach to literary criticism. In brief, as a 
psychiatrist might use the day dreams, fancies, imaginings 
of his patient to get at personality— "a set of personal rela- 
tions;" so Mr. McCurdy through a study of recurrent ele- 
ments or themes found in twenty-three of the Master's plays, 
attempts to measure the personality projection of William 
Shakespeare. I found this stimulating reading, though I want- 
ed to argue at times. 

In Dramatic Heritage Paul Green brings together twenty- 
three varied essays and short papers devoted to life and the 
theatre. Many of them deal with phases of regional theatre 
and community festival and each will have its admiring read- 

252 The North Carolina Historical Review 

ers. Two, the critical essay on Paul Claudel, and the essay 
entitled "The Mystical Bernard Shaw" are exceptionally 
good— the latter, Paul Green at his best. As is usual with this 
writer always the subject is treated in an imaginative way, 
in vivid style, sometimes in poetic terms, always in language 
so beautifully accurate that it is a joy to read. 

In the lively work, The Gentleman of Renaissance France, 
William Leon Wiley, of the University of North Carolina, 
has produced a scholarly and very readable book, one that 
should have appeal for cultivated readers everywhere— not 
merely those interested in Romance language and literature. 
Here he writes of the French Gentilhomme, studies the life 
and habits of the French gentleman, in the period 1515 to 
1560, that is, in the last half-century of the Valois Dynasty, 
in the days of, and at the courts of Francis I and Henry II. 
I find the work thoroughly enjoyable as well as must illum- 
inating. It gives a very full and extremely valuable account 
to the period. It is vivid, charming, delightful. It distresses 
me to present it so inadequately to you. But time limit for- 
bids further comment. 

And now we come to our final book, certainly one of the 
most delightful books to come from a North Carolina pen 
this year— delightful alike to both the expert and to the gen- 
eral reader, and one of the most widely read books of the 
year: William T. Polk's Southern Accent, from Uncle 
Remus to Oak Ridge. Critics have called the book "salty, 
sympathetic and sagacious," to quote one; "poetic, sardonic, 
erudite, and wise," to quote another; "provocative, intrigu- 
ing"; "lively and often informative" to quote a third. I have 
found in the book all of these qualities and more. Looking 
at his own section of these United States, a section that has 
all too often been sentimentalized on the one hand, misunder- 
stood, bitterly criticized, or debunked on the other, Mr. Polk 
himself says that he writes "out of love, shame, admiration, 
exasperation, perplexity and fascination," as he examines its 
life and its products during the turbulent and changing pe- 
riod of the past one hundred years from 1850 to 1953— 
from Uncle Remus to Oak Ridge. 

North Carolina Non-Fiction Books, 1953-1954 253 

Parts of the book are brilliant, it seems to me; parts hila- 
rious. Some readers undoubtedly will feel that the book en- 
deavors to do too much, or that it endeavors to cover too 
much ground. Some undoubtedly will prefer the first half 
to the latter part. Mr. Polk arranges his material in four parts : 
One, What is the South?— his attempted answer considered 
in four varied chapters; Two, What is the South Doing?— a 
question answered as best he can in six lively chapters; Third, 
What is the South Thinking?— his answer presented in three 
chapters, one on race dilemma, one on Southern statesman- 
ship from Monticello (Jefferson) to Bilbo, and the last out- 
lining seriously Main Currents in Southern Thought, 1850- 
1953; and the Fourth Part, What is the South Becoming?— 
in which some measure of answer to the query is offered 
under headings, "The Almost Irrestible Force," "The Not 
Quite Immovable Object," and finally, "Challenge and Re- 
sponse." Hilarious indeed, is the chapter including "A Scythe 
for Mother," Mr. Polk's caricature of a typical contemporary 
southern novel a la the imitators of a Faulkner, or a Tobacco 
Road. At the other pole is the serious chapter in which he 
analyzes the new industrial South. This is a healthy book, a 
delightful and readable volume, one of which all North Car- 
olinians can be proud. 

There, then, are the twenty-eight books for the year 1953- 
1954. Hurried and inadequate as my evaluation of them for 
you has, of necessity, been, I can only trust that I have made 
you feel in some measure the pride and gratification that 
was mine as I read them and as I came to realize the richness, 
the variety, and the value to be found in what our North 
Carolina writers had offered us. 


By Louis B. Wright 

To North Carolinians it seems only natural that the first 
effort to found an English colony in the New World should 
have been directed to its shores. Clearly God was directing 
the English toward the Promised Land. But to citizens of 
other territories, the magnetic quality of the sandy stretches of 
beach in the neighborhood of Cape Hatteras has always 
been a matter of wonder. Had Raleigh's colonists found safer 
harbors and more fertile territory the story of Elizabethan 
efforts at colonization and of the later English colonies might 
have been different. But they did not; three times they re- 
turned to the same place, and no one has satisfactorily ex- 
plained the fascination of this particular spot. It is true that 
Arthur Barlow after the first reconnaissance in 1584 gave 
an astonishing account of grapes growing in every bush and 
shrub so that, he wrote, "in all the world the like abundance 
is not to be found." To one intimately acquainted with the 
juice of the scuppernong and muscadine, fresh or fermented, 
this may provide a clue to the attraction of Roanoke Island 
and its environs. But it is not my purpose to discuss this even- 
ing the motives prompting the expeditions sent out by Ra- 
leigh to settle on the shores of North Carolina; but rather it 
is to survey the reasons why they were so long in coming. 

England was late in claiming a place in the sun of the 
New World. Indeed, she almost lost her opportunity. For 
nearly a century before England gained a foothold, Spain 
had been creating a vast empire that stretched from Tierra 
del Fuego to Texas and beyond. She was comfortably settled 
in Florida and was reaching north, with an outpost on the 
coast of Georgia. Her explorers had ventured into Chesapeake 
Bay and other inlets of the North Atlantic seaboard. Her 
fishermen, along with those of France, had long frequented 
the cod fisheries around Newfoundland and Laborador. It 
seemed only a question of time before Spain would envelop 


Elizabethan Politics and Colonial Enterprise 255 

most of the New World. However, Jacques Carrier, it must 
not be forgotten, had explored the St. Lawrence in 1536 
and claimed it for the King of France, but France had been 
as slow as England in proving her claim. 

A faint hint of eventual opposition to Spain lay in the al- 
most forgotten voyage of John Cabot, a Genoese, naturalized 
in Venice. He had entered the employ of the first Tudor king, 
Henry VII, and in 1497 had explored the northern coasts 
of America, probably the shores of Newfoundland and Nova 
Scotia, and had reported to his royal master that he had 
claimed the country in his name. Upon the slender claims of 
Cabot's discovery, England later based her right to territory 
in the North Atlantic. Why had England, for nearly a cen- 
tury, done so little to assert these claims and to take such a 
rich possession? To us who have been steeped in the intri- 
cacies of geopolitics and the belief in the necessity of access 
to essential natural resources, it seems incredible that a na- 
tion as shrewd— and acquisitive— as the English would have 
been so negligent of its opportunities. 

The answer lies of course in the tangled skein of Tudor 
politics and England's slow realization of her place in the in- 
ternational scene. We may see a similar parallel in the United 
States' own groping toward political maturity, and her slow- 
ness to grasp the implications of international power and 
responsibility. For a long time England's destinies were con- 
trolled by doctrines that our own isolationists would under- 
stand and approve. But there were many complicating fac- 

The first was the instability of the Tudor throne. Looking 
backward from our point of vantage in time, we remember 
the long reign of the first Elizabeth and think that few mon- 
archs could have felt more secure in the affections of their 
countrymen. But we forget that Henry VII had a very shaky 
title to the crown which he snatched from Richard III, and 
that Henry VIII in his efforts to establish a male line of suc- 
cession, stirred up a hornet's nest at home and abroad, alien- 
ated Spain and Mother Church, sowed the seeds of rebel- 
lion, and left only a sickly minor son and two uncertain 

256 The North Carolina Historical Review 

daughters, whose partisans were ready time after time to 
plunge the country into civil war. Edward VI's brief reign 
saw a Protestant regime, followed by Mary Tudor's reversal 
of the state religion and marriage with Philip II of Spain, 
chief protagonist of Catholic power in Europe. Mary in turn 
was followed by Elizabeth in 1558, who cast her lot with 
the new religion, though it is doubtful whether she had much 
enthusiasm for religion of any kind. But as the daughter of 
Anne Boleyn she was regarded by the Catholic Church as 
illegitimate and therefore without claim to the throne. Her 
religious position was forced upon her. 

On her accession, Elizabeth was faced with the internal 
rebellion of powerful Catholic subjects like the Howards in 
the North and with the threat of invasion from the Contin- 
ent if she offended her late half brother-in-law, Philip II. 
Few young girls have had more problems to perplex them. But 
few girls possessed such natural cunning and shrewdness, 
and few have ever had so wise and adroit a counsellor as 
William Cecil, later Lord Burghley, whom she inherited 
from her sister Mary. For most of her reign— until his death 
in 1598— Elizabeth kept Burghley by her side. She was often 
angry with him, frequently deceived him, and was not above 
engaging in political intrigues behind his back, but she never 
felt comfortable when she went against Cecil's advice, and 
she always stood a bit in awe of him. No other man ever 
succeeded in awing Elizabeth. And yet Elizabeth never let 
Cecil become dictator over her mind. She kept other poli- 
ticians in her service and she played them against each other 
on the constantly shifting chess board of national policy. As 
Lord Treasurer, Burghley occupied a paramount position. 

Her other great statesman and counsellor was Francis 
Walsingham, about ten years younger than Burghley, whose 
appointment as ambassador to France, Burghley procured 
in 1570. Less than a year after the Massacre of St. Bartholo- 
mew's Day, August 24, 1572, Walsingham returned to be- 
come Principal Secretary to the Queen. The slaughter of the 
Huguenots had helped to confirm an ardent Protestantism 
which influenced his political point of view until his dying 

Elizabethan Politics and Colonial Enterprise 257 

day in 1590. Though Walsingham and Burghley began as 
friends, they soon found themselves on opposite sides of the 
political fence, particularly in matters of foreign policy. Much 
Elizabethan history must be interpreted with a knowledge 
of the personalities and attitudes of Walsingham and Burgh- 
ley in mind. Remote as all this may seem, it had much to do 
with the planning that preceded the attempt to colonize 
North Carolina. 

Walsingham became the leader of the Protestant cause, 
or more particularly, the wing of the Protestant faction that 
eventually became known as the Puritan group. Burghley, 
on the other hand, became the architect of Elizabeth's via 
media in religion, a state church that would not be too hard 
for former Catholics to accept and yet not so ritualistic as 
to alienate moderate Protestants. The brilliant biographer 
of both of these men, Professor Conyers Read, thus states 
their differences: "I think Cecil was a good Protestant, but 
he subordinated religion to material considerations, and 
while Walsingham looked upon Puritans as crusaders, Cecil, 
as he grew older, came to regard them as a nuisance. Clap- 
ham says of him [Cecil] that he disliked Catholics because 
of their superstition and the Puritans because of their singu- 
larity." 1 Villainous as Cecil may have regarded such acts as 
the St. Bartholomew's Massacre or the cruelties perpetrated 
by the Spaniards on the Dutch Calvinists, he never let his 
emotions sway his judgment. He did not intend for England 
to lead any Protestant crusade on the Continent. Though he 
placed no great trust in Spaniards, he believed that co-exis- 
tence of a sort was possible with them, and he was opposed 
to any policy that would bring open conflict. 

Walsingham, though a man of prudence, also became 
convinced as early as the 'seventies' that appeasement of 
Spain could go too far. In 1576, he was supporting secret 

1 The quotation is from a personal letter from Professor Read. His Mr. 
Secretary Walsingham and the Policy of Queen Elizabeth (Cambridge 
1925. 3 vols.) is a classic study of the man and his times. Hereafter cited 
as Read, Mr. Secretary Walsingham. The first volume of Professor Read's 
biography of Burghley is now in press. A succinct account of the political 
differences of the two men may be found in Read, "Walsingham and 
Burghley in Queen Elizabeth's Privy Council," English Historical Review, 
XXVIII (1913), 34-58. Hereafter cited as Read, "Walsingham and Burgh- 

258 The North Carolina Historical Review 

aid to the Dutch rebels and Burghley was opposing it. The 
Spanish Ambassador in London, Bernardino de Mendoza, 
reported in 1578, that Walsingham and the Earl of Leicester 
were pleading the Dutch cause under the color of religion 
which made it hard for Burghley to oppose them, particularly 
since Leicester, "despite his bad character," was in high fa- 
vor with the Queen. 2 

The Queen s relations with Leicester remain one of the 
mysteries of history. Whether Leicester was ever actually 
her lover may be doubted, but she was emotionally stirred 
by this ambitious man whose influence was greater than his 
abilities as a soldier or statesman. Yet better men than 
Leicester used him as a "front" and thereby gained a favor- 
able hearing from the Queen. One of these men was Wal- 

Walsingham's personal sympathies lay with the extreme 
Protestant or Puritan wing of the church, and he and Leices- 
ter are sometimes described as leaders of the "Puritan party." 
That is an over-simplification of their activities. 3 Walsing- 
ham was too shrewd a statesman to become a narrow parti- 
san, but both he and Leicester were irrevocably committed 
to opposition to Spain. After the Sea Beggars seized Brill 
and Flushing in 1572, and the revolt of the Netherlands ex- 
cited the hopes of Protestants throughout Europe, Walsing- 
ham and Leicester argued earnestly in the Privy Council 
that England should recognize Philip II as an enemy and 
go to the aid of the rebels. 4 Henceforth, they were the recog- 
nized leaders of the anti-Spanish faction in the Privy Coun- 
cil and of what Corbett has called the "war party." 5 Eliza- 
beth was so upset on one occasion in 1576 by the constant 
pressure to aid the Dutch that she ran into her bedroom, 
locked the door, and refused to come out until members of 
her household threatened to batter down the door to re- 
trieve her. As one observer reported, "Her Majesty is troubl- 

2 Read, "Walsingham and Burghley," 38. 

3 Read, Mr. Secretary Walsingham, II, 258-339, discusses the complicated 
nature of Walsingham's private and public relations with the Puritans. 

4 Read, Mr. Secretary Walsingham, I, 316-372. 

5 Julian S. Corbett, Drake and the Tudor Navy (London, 1899), I, 190 ff. 
Hereafter cited as Corbett, Drake and the Tudor Navy. 

Elizabethan Politics and Colonial Enterprise 259 

ed with these causes, which maketh her very melancholy 
and [she] seemeth greatly to be out of quiet." 6 Everybody 
else was "out of quiet." Cautious, prudent William Cecil, 
now Lord Burghley, was beside himself. He and the con- 
servative members of the Privy Council did not want to see 
Spain— or France either— supreme in the Low Countries, yet 
Burghley, like the Queen, feared open war. The result, for 
the time being, was another effort by the Queen to mediate 
between Philip and the Dutch. She ended by lending the 
Dutch money and allowing English "volunteers" to serve 
in the Low Countries; eventually she sent her favorite Leices- 
ter to command English troops fighting with the Dutch. 

The decade from 1578 to 1588 was a period of cold war 
with hot intervals, an era in some respects like our own un- 
happy age. Throughout these years Burghley continued to 
hope for a peaceful solution with Spain. 

Around Walsingham, however, another group collected, a 
group intent upon harassing Spain in every way. Their stra- 
tegy was to unleash as many commerce raiders as they could 
muster and let them prey on Spanish shipping and Spanish 
treasure ships. They even contemplated establishing opera- 
tional bases in the New World, and of raiding Spain's life 
lines from such bases. These were the earliest plans for Eng- 
lish settlements overseas. These bold spirits included John 
Hawkins, Francis Drake, Humphrey Gilbert, Walter Raleigh, 
and Richard Hakluyt, the dedicated propagandist of English 
expansion overseas. It was not mere whim that made Hak- 
luyt dedicate the 1589 edition of the Principal Navigations 
to Walsingham. In addition to the immediate purpose of 
crippling the Spanish capacity to make war— and of enrich- 
ing themselves— by capturing Spanish treasure ships, these 
men were coming to believe that England's future strength 
and prosperity demanded outposts in the New World. Seiz- 
ure of American bases would mean a frontal attack on Span- 
ish interests and would incur the risk of a counter-attack 
on England and the loss of English commerce with Spain and 
the Spanish dominions. 

e Read, Mr. Secretary Walsingham, I, 316. 

260 The North Carolina Historical Review 

Burghley was opposed to such bold measures on several 
counts. First, he did not believe that England was equipped 
to wage a war with Spain, the colossus of Europe. Spanish 
armies were the mightiest Europe had ever seen. The Span- 
ish infantryman had proved himself invincible on many a 
field and Spain's reservoir of manpower seemed inexhausti- 
ble. Burghley's natural caution made him loath to offend so 
dangerous an enemy. Furthermore, he believed that the na- 
tional interest lay in preserving peace and encouraging trade. 
Despite religious and political suspicion and hatred of Spain, 
England had a profitable trade with the Iberian peninsula and 
with Flanders. Burghley had been constantly negotiating 
to expand that trade. War, Burghley believed, would cer- 
tainly bring on financial disaster. The best interests of Eng- 
land would be served if the nation should content itself with 
trade, keep the peace, and grow prosperous. Some way 
would be found to circumvent the political and military 
threats from Spain. In short, Burghley was a "little England- 
er"— at least for the time being— and wanted no part of over- 
seas expansion, if that expansion meant war with the great- 
est military power in Europe. 

Between Burghley and the conservatives on one side and 
the adventurers who looked to Walsingham for leadership, 
there was a constant struggle, often not open, but always 
persistent. Where did the Queen stand in the midst of the 
great debate? Precisely where it suited her at the moment. 
With characteristic Tudor cunning, she played both sides 
against the middle. She would not outwardly oppose Burgh- 
ley and favor an irreparable affront to Spain; yet she secret- 
ly encouraged her corsairs and sometimes invested in their 
privateering expeditions. Always she demanded and got a 
royal share of the booty. But she took care that she could dis- 
avow any particularly embarrassing foray by her seamen. 

The political background of Drake's famous circumnavi- 
gation of the world in 1577-1580 illustrates the duplicity of 
the Queen with her own ministers. In the summer of 1576, 
Walsingham was in despair over the Queen's consideration 
of a plan to make friends with Philip, and he was eager to 
take advantage of any change of mood that would harden 

Elizabethan Politics and Colonial Enterprise 261 

her against the Spanish king. In the spring of 1577 the Queen 
became suspicious that Philip was nurturing a plot to aid 
Mary Stuart and Walsingham lost no time in encouraging 
that mood. He advised her that she should secretly encourage 
some of her sea captains to strike a blow at Spanish shipping 
that would prove to Philip that England was a power that 
he might not trifle with. At this moment Walsingham sought 
out Drake. "Secretary Walsingham did come to confer with 
him and declared unto him that Her Majesty had received 
divers injuries of the King of Spain, for the which she de- 
sired to have some revenge," a contemporary report giving 
Drake's account of the proceeding states. 7 Whereupon, Wal- 
singham whipped out a map and asked Drake to write down 
in his own hand the places on the map where the King of 
Spain "might be most annoyed." This Drake refused to do, 
pointing out "that Her Majesty was mortal, and that if it 
should please God to take Her Majesty away, it might be 
that some prince might reign that might be in league with 
the King of Spain, and then will my own hand be a witness 
against myself." Nevertheless, Drake agreed to tell the Queen 
in person of a plan to attack the Spaniards from the South 
Sea and to raid the west coast of Spanish America. This 
Drake did, and he reported that "Her Majesty did swear by 
her Crown that if any within her realm did give the King 
of Spain to understand hereof (as she suspected too well) 
they should lose their heads therefor." And lastly Drake 
said, "Her Majesty gave me special commandment that of 
all men my Lord Treasurer should not know it." So Burgh- 
ley, the Lord Treasurer, must be kept in the dark. Was he 
completely fooled by the secrecy surrounding the feverish 
preparations for the impending voyage? That is doubtful. 
It was hard to keep secrets from so knowing a man as Burgh- 
ley. It was given out that this was to be a voyage of discovery 
in search of Terra Australis Incognita, and it was hinted for 
Burghley's benefit, in case he heard of the project, that noth- 
ing was farther from Drake's intent than injury to the King 
of Spain. 

7 Corbett, Drake and the Tudor Navy, I, 207-208. 

262 The North Carolina Historical Review 

Clearly Burghley knew something about the projected 
voyage, for among the gentlemen-officers whom Drake found 
it expedient to take along was a mysterious person named 
Thomas Doughty, who had long cultivated Drake's friend- 
ship. Doughty's precise role has been a subject of specula- 
tion, but it is certain that he was Burghley's agent. Perhaps 
Burghley placed upon him responsibility for frustrating any 
belligerent move against Spain. Perhaps he was there mere- 
ly to report to Burghley what happened. 

At any rate, Doughty proved a troublemaker from the start, 
and when Drake reached the Straits of Magellan late in 
June 1578, he anchored in Santa Cruz Bay and brought 
Doughty to trial for mutiny and other crimes. With charac- 
teristic English regard for the forms of law, Drake gave 
Doughty a jury trial; he was found guilty and sentenced by 
Drake, who served as presiding judge, to death. Again with 
characteristic English regard for decorum, Drake took com- 
munion with the prisoner, sat with him at his last dinner, 
and had him beheaded as a traitor. Whatever the formal 
charges were, Doughty's fatal crime in Drake's eyes was be- 
ing the agent to betray him to Burghley, the Lord Treasurer. 
Drake was realist enough to know that he himself was 
caught in the web of Elizabethan politics, that, in Corbett's 
words, "he was being used as an instrument to upset Burgh- 
ley's policy of peace." 8 

The story of Drake's epoch-making voyage has been often 
told and does not need repeating, but its political aspects 
and its relation to other anti-Spanish ventures are frequently 
overlooked. Drake's raids on the defenceless towns of Chile 
and Peru were enough to precipitate war, it would seem. 
But when Mendoza, the Spanish ambassador, complained of 
the "master thief as he called Drake, Elizabeth blandly re- 
torted that she had no proof of his guilt. Elizabeth, of course, 
was ready to repudiate a liability, but Drake's safety lay in 
the extraordinary wealth brought back from the pillage of 
Spanish ships and towns. To repudiate Drake now would 
mean restitution of the stolen goods to Spain, and Elizabeth, 

8 Corbett, Drake and the Tudor Navy, I, 244. 

Elizabethan Politics and Colonial Enterprise 263 

once she had glimpsed the gold and jewels in the "Golden 
Hind's" cargo had no mind to send them to Spain and hang 
Drake merely to please the Spanish ambassador and his 
royal master. Instead, on April 4, 1581, she went down to 
Deptf ord where the "Golden Hind" lay at anchor and knight- 
ed Drake on his own deck. Surely this was an open affront 
to Philip and proof of the success of Walsingham's scheme. 

Burghley and the peace party, however, continued to work 
for a rapprochement with Philip. The London merchants 
trading with Spain and Portugal were fearful of the loss of 
their business and their ships in case of open war and they 
also exerted all their influence to prevent a conflict. Burghley 
even counselled the Queen to restore the stolen treasure to 
Spain. Drake was by now a popular hero and the Queen had 
added to her treasury too much of his gold to permit resti- 
tution. The precise amount of wealth brought home in the 
"Golden Hind" will never be known but it is estimated at 
the least to have equalled "nearly twice a year's normal rev- 
enue of the English crown, and yielding [to the investors in 
the voyage] a profit said to have worked out at 4,700 per- 
cent." 9 Even after the Queen had taken her full share, Drake 
was wealthy and the lowliest cabin boy in his crew had a rich 
reward. Small wonder that he was a hero. 

Though Burghley might stave off open war for a while 
longer, Drake's success whetted the appetite of corsairs and 
expansionists who would continue to harass Spain until peace 
would be impossible. Drake had shown that the Spanish Em- 
pire was vulnerable, and Walsingham's group became more 
importunate for overseas expansion. By now they can be de- 
scribed as incipient imperialists. They were beginning to 
think in terms of territorial expansion overseas. 

The man who did more than any other to rationalize this 
point of view was the preacher, Richard Hakluyt, who be- 
came the greatest propagandist of his age for overseas ex- 
pansion. His compilations of voyages were intended for 
something other than romantic reading. They were to in- 
spire his countrymen to further explorations and to provide 

9 James A. Williamson, The Tudor Age (London, 1953), 344. 

264 The North Carolina Historical Review 

practical information which they might use. In dedications 
and introductions, Hakluyt argued cogently that the destiny 
of England required her to settle strategic areas in the New 
World. Walsingham early recognized the importance of Hak- 
luyt's work and encouraged him in it. Hakluyt indeed be- 
came an influential cosmographer and advocate in the Wal- 
singham group of expansionists. 

As early as 1580 Hakluyt prepared a paper, probably for 
Walsingham, entitled "A Discourse of the Commodity of 
the Taking of the Straight of Magellanus" in which he argued 
that without "great charge and without open war" England 
might cripple Spain by fortifying the passage to the Pacific. 
He also suggested the seizure of Cape St. Vincent in Brazil 
as a subsidiary base and the continued search for a North- 
east passage to Asia. In order not to antagonize the King 
of Spain he suggested that "To the Str. of Magellanus may 
be sent Clerke [Thomas Clarke] the pirate upon promise of 
pardon, and to color the matter he may go as of himself and 
not with the countenance of the English state, or some such 
man may be sent." 10 He further suggested that the fort at 
the Straits might be garrisoned with slaves and half-breeds 
rescued from the Spanish colonies. A few English convicts, 
male and female, might also win their freedom by going to 
the Straits. Thus the fortification of this area would serve a 
Christian and humanitarian purpose and benefit the nation. 
Though there is no record that Hakluyt's memorandum had 
any immediate effect, it is evidence of the growing realiza- 
tion of the expansionists that England must checkmate Spain 
in the New World. 

Hakluyt's first compilation, the Divers Voyages of 1582, 
dedicated to Walsingham's son-in-law, Sir Philip Sidney, 
contained further arguments of the value of English bases 
overseas. The dedication rebukes his countrymen for their 
negligence of duty and for putting privateering ahead of 
colonization out of what he calls "a preposterous desire of 

10 E. G. R. Taylor (ed.), The Original Writings and Correspondence of 
the Two Richard Hakluyts (Hakluyt Society, 2nd Ser., LXXVI, 1935), I, 
142. Hereafter cited as Taylor, Original Writings. 

Elizabethan Politics and Colonial Enterprise 265 

seeking rather gain than God's glory." " These beliefs Hak- 
luyt set forth in a long and closely-reasoned state paper, pre- 
sented in person to the Queen in 1584; this paper, generally 
known today as the Discourse of Western Planting, shows 
the handiwork, not only of Hakluyt but of Raleigh and pos- 
sibly of Walsingham. 12 It is a sort of platform of the expan- 
sionists and makes a convincing argument for state support 
of colonization. 

Adroitly Hakluyt wrapped his argument in a medley of 
religious and practical reasons which even a hostile critic 
would find hard to controvert. The princes of the reformed 
religion, of whom Queen Elizabeth is the leader, he asserts, 
have a responsibility to see that the heathen of the New 
World are not allowed to become a solid Catholic bloc. It 
is not sufficient just to send a few Protestant missionaries to 
the heathen, Hakluyt points out. Salvation must be a con- 
comitant of colonization. He then paints a gorgeous picture 
of the profits to English merchants and the enrichment of 
the English crown from the commodities of the New World 
which Spain at present monopolizes. The power of Spain, 
he insists, is much inflated, and he prophecies that King 
Philip's pride will be brought low when Englishmen launch 
a determined attack on the outposts of his empire. 

All of this reasoning, all of this argument for governmental 
support of colonial enterprises of course is propaganda for 
Raleigh's own projects to settle the coast of North Carolina. 
In the political alignment of the 1580's Raleigh held an in- 
teresting position. Walsingham undoubtedly sympathized 
with many of his views on expansion and helped to promote 
them. Yet Walsingham never liked or trusted Raleigh and 
frequently opposed him. 13 Neither did Burghley like or 
trust Raleigh. "Seek not to be Essex; shun to be Raleigh," 

11 Hakluyt as a propagandist is discussed at greater length in Louis B. 
Wright, Religion and Empire: The Alliance between Piety and Commerce 
in English Expansion, 1558-1625 (Chapel Hill, N. C, 1943), 33-56. Here- 
after cited as Wright, Religion and Empire. 

^Taylor, Original Writings, I, 38. See also David B. Quinn, Raleigh 
and the British Empire (London, 1947), 59-62. Hereafter cited as Quinn, 
Raleigh and the British Empire. 

13 Read, Mr. Secretary Walsingham, III, 406, n. 3. 

266 The North Carolina Historical Review 

was Burghley's advice to his own son Robert. 14 Yet Raleigh 
tried on numerous occasions to cultivate Burghley's good 
will and Burghley was not above using Raleigh's influence 
with the Queen when Raleigh was in favor and it suited 
Burghley's purposes. The truth was that Raleigh, brilliant 
and versatile, was also grasping and arrogant and had few 
friends. Before the Queen he was a charming and gracious 
courtier and for a time he stood high in her favor. It was 
during a period of royal favor that he won Walsingham's ap- 
proval of his colonial ventures and managed to avoid Burgh- 
ley's veto. From the Queen he obtained a favorable charter, 
and the settlement of North Carolina was theoretically pos- 

Raleigh had another advantage: the experience of his 
half-brother, Sir Humphrey Gilbert, fifteen years his senior, 
a respected soldier in Ireland and the Low Countries, at one 
time an advocate for explorations in search of the Northwest 
passage, and the would-be colonizer of Newfoundland. Gil- 
bert had been knighted for his services in Ireland in the 
'sixties and had the respect even of Burghley, who, along 
with other conservatives like the Earl of Sussex, subscribed 
to his project for the settlement of Newfoundland in 1580- 
1584. 15 

Yet Gilbert had been one of the ardent supporters of the 
policy of attacking Spain in the New World. Indeed, in Nov- 
ember 1577, he had prepared two papers with similar titles: 
"A Discourse How Her Majesty May Meet with and Annoy 
the King of Spain." 16 Just at the time when Drake was pre- 
paring to sail on his expedition around the world, Gilbert 
proposed that he should lead an expedition to seize the 
Spanish, Portuguese, and French fishing fleets off Newfound- 
land and then combine forces with other privateers to take 
Cuba and Santo Domingo in the West Indies. This action 
undoubtedly would have "annoyed" the King of Spain, not 
to mention the King of France, but combined with Drake's 

14 William Stebbing, Sir Walter Raleigh, A Biography (Oxford, 1899), 57. 

35 David B. Quinn, The Voyages and Colonizing Activities of Sir Hum- 
phrey Gilbert (Hakluyt Society, 2nd Ser., LXXXIV, 1940), II, 329. Here- 
after cited as Quinn, The Voyages . . . of Sir Humphrey Gilbert. 

16 Quinn, The Voyages . . . of Sir Humphrey Gilbert, I, 33-34, 170-180. 

Elizabethan Politics and Colonial Enterprise 267 

attack on the west coast, it might have broken the back of 
the Spanish Empire. Such measures, however, were too 
strong for Elizabeth, and she contented herself with sur- 
reptitious aid to Drake. Thereafter, Gilbert busied himself 
with less provocative ventures in Newfoundland. A staunch 
Protestant, he was convinced that God had especially re- 
served certain portions of the New World for a Protestant 
empire, and Newfoundland looked like the promised land. 
Nevertheless, he was ready to admit English Catholic refu- 
gees as colonists, because that would drain a troublesome 
element out of England and put them to constructive work 
in a country where they could do no harm. 1T Since Gilbert's 
Newfoundland colony did not appear to contravene Spanish 
interests sufficiently to arouse violent reactions from that 
quarter, even Burghley smiled upon it. Perhaps he thought 
of the benefits to the cod fishery, his own pet project for im- 
proving the economic state of England. At any rate, the ef- 
forts to establish a colony in Newfoundland helped to get 
the Queen and Burghley used to the idea and made it easier 
for Raleigh to obtain his charter. 

The story of Raleigh's efforts to establish a colony in 
North Carolina is known to all. With the growing zeal for 
colonial enterprise, we may wonder why these efforts failed. 
A study of the reasons for the failures and mishaps of Ra- 
leigh's ventures— and of the first years at Jamestown— would 
be a profitable undertaking, but it would take more than the 
hour alloted for this paper. A few factors, however, are 
worth mentioning. The principal reasons lay in inexperience, 
poor organization, lack of strong administrative control, in- 
sufficient capital, and greed for quick profits. 

Some of the promoters of colonial enterprises overseas, 
notably Gilbert and Raleigh, had served in Ireland and had 
observed the efforts to found English colonies there. In some 
respects the Irish plantations presented problems not unlike 
those encountered in the New World. Certainly the wild Irish 
were as fierce as any Indians on the coast of North Carolina. 
One would think that the Irish experience would have been 

17 Wright, Religion and Empire, 23-26. 

268 The North Carolina Historical Review 

helpful in the New World, but it appears to have taught the 
promoters very little. All of the early colonial ventures were in- 
adequately equipped, poorly manned, and poorly led. Even 
when a capable leader emerged, he was handicapped by a 
divided command, jealousy among the "gentlemen" in the 
group, and the lack of firm authority. Because the government 
in the initial period refused to take any responsibility for 
colonies, the administration of the ventures was a private 
affair without any well-tried plan or procedure. 

Not one of the early colonial efforts had sufficient financial 
backing to insure its success. The Elizabethans— and the 
Jacobeans too, for that matter— were slow to learn how ex- 
pensive colonies can be in their first stages of development. 

One prime reason why the Elizabethans failed to establish 
colonies was their obsession with privateering— or simple 
piracy— as the Spaniards called it. Raleigh's colonial under- 
takings were expected to pay the investors a profit out of 
Spanish prizes captured by the prowling ship-captains. Both 
Gilbert and Raleigh had difficulty keeping their skippers 
headed for Newfoundland or North Carolina when there 
was a prospect of prizes in the West Indies. The lure of Span- 
ish galleons to be taken in American waters rather than the 
national preoccupation with defense against the Spanish 
Armada accounts for the long delay in attempting to succor 
the colony on Roanoke Island. A privateering syndicate or- 
ganized by a merchant named John Watts in 1591 had as 
an incidental objective the rescue of the Roanoke colony. 
Raleigh was one of the investors and John White went along 
in the ship "Hopewell." The other vessel was the "Moon- 
shine." They coasted along the shores of North Carolina, 
blew trumpets, and sang English songs, but could get no 
response, and finally headed for home. Nevertheless, the 
voyage showed a profit from prizes taken of eighty-five per 
cent on the investment of the shareholders. Yet this hand- 
some return was regarded by Raleigh as so trifling that he 
complained to Burghley that "we might have gotten more 
to have sent them a-fishing." 18 When the profits from piracy 

18 Quinn, Raleigh and the British Empire, 125-126. 

Elizabethan Politics and Colonial Enterprise 269 

were so great, speculators were not interested in the slow 
returns on money invested in colonies. 

The eventual war with Spain and the victory over the 
Armada removed the fear of offending Spain as a political 
reason against colonial undertakings. Gradually, as English 
capital built up, and as the moneyed men in the City, the 
merchants of London, began to realize that sources of raw 
materials and eventual markets could be found in North 
America, a new and healthier basis for colonization develop- 
ed. When King James made peace with Spain, the old zest 
for piracy disappeared. No longer would the sovereign and 
some of the principal ministers in the government take stock 
in piratical voyages. Profits had to be sought in another type 
of adventure. The initiative for colonization passed from sea- 
captains and courtiers to the directors of stock companies. 
Though colonial ventures were still subject to much trial and 
error, a sounder colonial procedure was in sight. 

By Mary Lindsay Thornton 

Bibliography and Libraries 

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of Archives and History, 1954. 22 p. Apply The Department. 

THOMPSON, LAWRENCE SIDNEY, compiler. The Kentucky 
novel, compiled by Lawrence S. Thompson and Algernon D. 
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Philosophy and Religion 

ADAMS, ELIE MAYNARD. The fundamentals of general logic. 

New York, Longmans, Green, 1954. 361 p. il. $3.60. 
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SPENCE, THOMAS HUGH, JR. The Presbyterian congrega- 
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TAYLOR, GEORGE AIKEN. A sober faith; religion and Alco- 
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Economics and Sociology 

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BRIDGES, EARLY WINFRED. Chorazin Chapter no. 13, Royal 
Arch Masons, a historical survey. Staunton, Va., McClure 
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DOUGLAS, ROBERT DICK. Forms; a comprehensive and ac- 
curate compilation of legal and business forms for use in the 
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KNIGHT, EDGAR WALLACE, editor. A documentary history 
of education in the South before 1860, vol. 5: Educational 
theories and practices. Chapel Hill, University of North Caro- 
lina Press, 1953. vii, 533 p. $12.50. 

LASSITER, WILLIAM CARROLL. Law and press; a North 
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editing and publishing for newspaper reporters, editors, and 
publishers. Raleigh, N. C, The Author, c.1954. 215 leaves. 

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NORTH CAROLINA. UNIVERSITY. The inauguration of Gor- 
don Gray as President of the Consolidated Uuiversity of 
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NORTH CAROLINA. UNIVERSITY. The septicentennial cele- 
bration of the founding of the Sorbonne College in the Uni- 

North Carolina Bibliography, 1953-1954 273 

versity of Paris, Chapel Hill, February, 1953, Proceedings 
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ix, 49 p. Apply Urban T. Holmes, Department of Romance 
Languages, Chapel Hill, N. C. 


Engineers, New York. Survey and report on the inland ports 
and waterways of North Carolina, prepared for the Depart- 
ment of Conservation and Development. New York, 1954. 
Various paging, il. Apply The Department. 

POWELL, WILLIAM STEVENS. The Carolina charter of 
1663, how it came to North Carolina and its place in history, 
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SPRUNT, ALEXANDER. Album of southern birds. Photo- 
graphs by Samuel A. Grimes. Austin, University of Texas 
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Applied Science and Useful Arts 

BROWN, AYCOCK. The birth of aviation, Kitty Hawk, N. C. 
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274 The North Carolina Historical Review 

cooking. Chapel Hill, Junior Service League, 1953. 123 p. 

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RICHARDSON, FRANK HOWARD. How to get along with 
children. Atlanta, Tupper & Love, 1954. 172 p. $2.95. 

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Fine Arts 

GREEN, PAUL. Dramatic heritage. New York, S. French 
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KAMPHOEFNER, HENRY L. Churches and temples, by Paul 
Thiry, Richard M. Bennett, and Henry L. Kamphoefner. New 
York, Reinhold Publishing Co., 1954. ii, 71 p. il. $18. 

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by Charles K. Brightbill [and] Harold D. Meyer. New York, 
Prentice-Hall, 1953. 541 p. $6.35. 

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duction to music's elements, styles, and forms, for both the 
layman and the practitioner. New York, Harper [1953] 302 
p. il. $5.00. 

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vately Printed, 1953. 85 p. il. Apply the Author, Winston- 
Salem, N. C. 


BAY LEAVES no. 2: Prize poems, Poetry Day contests . . . 
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Carolina, 1954. 21 p. Order from C. A. Shull, Box 6252, West 
Asheville, N. C. $1.00 pa. 

ERSKINE, EDITH DEADERICK. From sea to sky. Emory 
University, Ga., Banner Press [1954] 59 p. $2.00. 

Here they live and die. Dallas, Texas, The Story 

Book Press [c.1953] 64 p. 

FARMER, JAMES. Tape of time. New York, Vantage Press, 
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KIMREY, GRACE SAUNDERS. Songs of Sunny Valley. Emory 
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LASKEY, LESLIE J. Seasons and hours. Indiana University, 
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MASON, JULIAN. Search party. New York, Pageant Press 
[c.1953] 49 p. $2.00. 

SMITH, IVORY HARVEY, editor. Life lines, a collection of 
inspiring poetry and prose, by Ivory Harvey Smith and Isa- 
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STEM, THAD, JR. The jack knife horse, poems. 2 Raleigh, N. C. 
Wolfs Head Press, 1954, 59 p. $2.00. 

TARBOX, LELA PRESCOTT. Poems and illustrations, with a 
prose supplement. New Bern, Printed by Owen G. Dunn Com- 
pany, 1954. 63 p. il. $1.50 pa. 

VAIL, RUTH. The year's at the Spring. Emory University, Ga., 
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2 Roanoke-Chowan award for poetry. 

276 The North Carolina Historical Review 

Fiction 3 

BELL, THELMA HARRINGTON. Snow; with drawings by 

Corydon Bell. New York, Viking Press, 1954. 55 p. il. $2.50. 

-Take it easy; illustrated by Corydon Bell. New York, 

Viking Press, 1953. 172 p. $2.50. Juvenile. 

BETTS, DORIS. The gentle insurrection, and other stories. New 
York, Putnam [1954] 274 p. 

BURGWYN, MEBANE (HOLOMON) Moonflower. Philadel- 
phia, Lippincott [1954] 186 p. $2.50. Juvenile. 

BYRD, MITZI. The loneliest chicken [illustrated by] Peggy 
Martin. New York, Macmillan, 1953. unpaged $1.00 Juvenile. 

CARROLL, RUTH (ROBINSON). Beanie, by Ruth and Latrobe 
Carroll. New York, Oxford University Press, 1953. unpaged, 
$2.50. Juvenile. 

Tough enough, by Ruth and Latrobe Carroll. New York, 

Oxford University Press, 1954. Unpaged, il. $2.75. Juvenile. 

GORDON, IAN. The whip hand. New York, Crown Publishers 
[1954] 200 p. $3.00. 

blanca. New York, Exposition Press [1953] 103 p. il. $2.50. 

HOSS, MAY DIKEMAN. The pike. New York, Appleton-Cen- 
tury-Crofts [1954] 303 p. $3.50. 

JARRELL, RANDALL. Pictures from an institution, a comedy 
New York, Knopf, 1954. 277 p. $3.50. 

JONES, KATHARINE M., editor. New Confederate stories. 
Columbia, University of South Carolina Press, 1954. 202 p. 

KARIG, WALTER. Don't tread on me; a novel of the historic 
exploits, military and gallant, of Commodore John Paul Jones. 
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8 By a North Carolinian or with the scene laid in North Carolina. 

North Carolina Bibliography, 1953-1954 277 

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PLENN, DORIS TROUTMAN. The green song. New York, 
David McKay Co., 1954. 128 p. il. $2.50. 

ROGERS, FRANCES G. The adventures of Jocko the monkey. 
New York, Exposition Press, 1954. 72 p. $2.50. Juvenile. 

[GLASCOCK, HAROLD] Plow and scalpel, a biography of 
Clemson MacFarland, M.D., by Robert Winfield [pseud.] New 
York, Vantage Press, Inc. [c.1953] 218 p. $3.50. The town 
called Hillsdale is Raleigh. 

SLAUGHTER, FRANK GILL. The song of Ruth; a love story 
from the Old Testament. Garden City, N. Y., Doubleday, 1954. 
317 p. $3.75. 

-Storm Haven. Garden City, N. Y., Doubleday, 1953. 

282 p. $3.50. 

SPEAS, JAN COX, Bride of the MacHugh, a novel. Indianap- 
olis, Bobbs-Merrill Co. [1954] 315 p. $3.50. 

STREET, JAMES HOWELL. Good-bye, my Lady. Philadelphia, 
Lippincott [1954] 222 p. $3.00. 

WATCHTOWERS and Drums, by Emma Gelders Sterne et al. 
New York, Aladdin Books, 1953. 234 p. il. $2.75. Includes 
stories by George F. Scheer and Manly W. Wellman. Juvenile. 

WATHEN, RICHARD. Cliffs of fall. New Orleans, Publications 
Press, c.1953. 304 p. $2.00. 

WELLMAN, MANLY WADE. Gray riders: Jeb Stuart and his 
men. New York, Aladdin Books, 1954. 192 p. il. $1.75. 

WICKER, TOM. The kingpin. New York, Sloane, 1953. 343 p. 


Literature Other Than Poetry, Drama, or Fiction 

GILBERT, ALLAN H., translator. Orlando furioso: English 
version by Allan H. Gilbert. New York, Vanni, Inc. 1954. 878 
p. il. $27.50. 

HOLMES, URBAN TIGNER. Samuel Pepys in Paris, and other 
essays. Chapel Hill, University of North Carolina Press 
[1954] (Studies in the Romance languages and literatures, no. 
24) 57 p. 

278 The North Carolina Historical Review 

HUBBELL, JAY BROADUS. The South in American literature, 
1607-1900. [Durham, N. C] Duke University Press, 1954. 
xix, 987 p. $10. 

HUSE, HOWARD RUSSELL, translator. Dante Alighieri: The 
Divine comedy, a new prose translation with an introduction 
and notes by H. R. Huse. New York, Rinehart and Co., Inc., 
1954. 492 p. il. $.95 pa. 

KELLER, JOHN ESTEN, editor. El libro de los enganos, edited 
by John Esten Keller. Chapel Hill [University of North Caro- 
lina Press] 1953. (Studies in the Romance languages and lit- 
eratures, no. 20), xii, 56 p. $1.00 pa. 

McCURDY, HAROLD GRIER. The personality of Shakespeare, 
a venture in psychological method. New Haven, Yale Univer- 
sity Press, 1953. xi, 243 p. $5.00. 


South Atlantic studies for Sturgis E. Leavitt, edited by Thom- 
as B. Stroup and Sterling A. Stoudemire. Washington, Scare- 
crow Press, 1953. 215 p. il. $5.00. 

THOMPSON, LAWRENCE SIDNEY. Wilhelm Waiblinger in 
Italy. Chapel Hill, University of North Carolina Press [1953] 
(Studies in the Germanic languages and literatures, no.9) 
105 p. $3.00. 


ALBRIGHT, WILLIAM THOMAS. History of the Widenhouse, 
Furr, Dry, Stallings, Teeter and Tucker families. [Greens- 
boro, N. C. 1954] 145 p. il. 

History and Travel 

ATKIN, EDMOND. Indians of the southern frontier: The Ed- 
mond Atkin report and plan of 1755, edited by William R. 
Jacobs. Columbia, University of South Carolina Press, 1954. 
xxxviii, 108 p. il. $5.00. 

BLANCHARD, FESSENDEN S. A cruising guide to the inland 
waterway and Florida. New York, Dodd, Mead and Co., 1954. 
xiv, 256 p. $5.00. 

BRAWLEY, JAMES SHOBER. The Rowan story, 1753-1953; 
a narrative history of Rowan County, North Carolina. Salis- 
bury, Rowan Printing Co., 1953. 402 p. il. $5.00. Order from the 
Author, Salisbury, N. C. 

North Carolina Bibliography, 1953-1954 279 

tory of Catawba County, edited by Charles J. Preslar, Jr. 
Salisbury, N. C, Printed by Rowan Printing Co., 1954. 526 
p. il. $5.16. Order from the Association, Box 35, Maiden, N. C. 

CLARK, WILLIAM BELL. The first Saratoga; being the saga 
of John Young and his sloop-of-war. Baton Rouge, Louisiana 
State University Press [c.1953] 199 p. $3.50. 

COTTERILL, ROBERT SPENCER. The southern Indians; the 
story of the civilized tribes before removal. Norman, Univer- 
sity of Oklahoma Press [1954] xiii, 255 p. il. $4.00. 

CURTISS, JOHN SHELTON. The Russian church and the So- 
viet state, 1917-1950. Boston, Little, Brown [1953] x, 387 
p. $6.00. 

DORRIS, JONATHAN TRUMAN. Pardon and amnesty under 
Lincoln and Johnson; the restoration of the Confederates to 
their rights and privileges, 1861-1898. Chapel Hill, Univer- 
sity of North Carolina Press [1953] xxi, 459 p. $7.50. 

EATON, WILLIAM CLEMENT. A history of the Southern 
Confederacy. New York, Macmillan, 1954. 351 p. $5.50. 

LEFLER, HUGH TALMAGE. North Carolina; the history of 
a southern State, by Hugh Talmage Lefler and Albert Ray 
Newsome. 4 Chapel Hill, University of North Carolina Press 
[1954] xii, 676 p. $7.50. 

Orange County, 1752-1952, edited by Hugh Lefler and 

Paul Wager. Chapel Hill [Printed by Orange Printshop] 1953. 
x, 389 p. il. $5.00. Order from Orange Printshop, Chapel Hill, 

N. C. 

graphy ; a study of how we live in North Carolina [by] Ben- 
jamin Franklin Lemert and Martha Langston Harrelson. Ok- 
lahoma City, Harlowe Publishing Corporation, 1953. 188 p. 
Preliminary edition. $2.25. 

LINK, ARTHUR STANLEY. Woodrow Wilson and the pro- 
gressive era, 1910-1917. New York, Harper [c.1954] xvii, 
331 p. il. $5.00. 

POLK, WILLIAM TANNAHILL. Southern accent: from Uncle 
Remus to Oak Ridge. New York, Morrow [1953] 264 p. $4.00. 

SPENCER, SAMUEL R., JR. Decision for war, 1917; the La- 
conia sinking and the Zimmermann telegram as key factors in 

4 Mayflower award. 

280 The North Carolina Historical Review 

the public reaction against Germany. West Rindge, N.H., R.R. 
Smith, 1953. 109 p. il. $2.50. 

STREET, JAMES HOWELL. The Civil War; an unvarnished 
account of the late but still lively hostilities. New York, Dial 
Press [1953] 144 p. $3.00. 

TUCKER, GLENN. Poltroons and patriots; a popular account 
of the War of 1812. Indianapolis, Bobbs-Merrill [1954] 2 v. 
il. $10. 

TURNER, GEORGE EDGAR. Victory rode the rails; the stra- 
tegic place of the railroads in the Civil War. Indianapolis, 
Bobbs-Merrill [1953] 419 p. il. $4.50. 

WILEY, WILLIAM LEON. The gentleman of Renaissance 
France. Cambridge, Harvard University Press, 1954. xii, 303 
p. il. $5.00. 

Autobiography and Biography 

COOK, CHARLES THOMAS. The Billy Graham story, "One 
thing I do." Wheaton, 111., Van Kampen [1954] 128 p. il. 

COTTON, ELLA EARL. A spark for my people ; the socialogical 
autobiography of a Negro teacher. New York, Exposition Press 
[1954] '288 p. $4.00. 

DANIELS, JONATHAN. The end of innocence. Philadelphia, 
Lippincott [1954] 351 p. il. $5.50. 

DAVIS, BURKE. They called him Stonewall; a life of Lt. Gen- 
eral T. J. Jackson, C.S.A. New York, Rhinehart [1954] 470 
p. il. $5.50. 

DURHAM, ROBERT LEE. Since I was born; edited by Mar- 
shall William Fishwick. Richmond, Whittep & Stepherson, 
1953. 217 p. il. $3.50. 

Catherine Devereux Edmondston, 1860-66, edited by Margaret 
Mackay Jones. Mebane, N. C, Privately Printed [1954] 111 
p. il. Order from Stephens Press, Asheville, N. C. $3.75. 

EDWARDS, PHILIP. Sir Walter Raleigh. London, Longmans, 
Green and Co. [1953] xii, 184 p. 10/6 

HAYNES, INA (FORTUNE) Raleigh Rutherford Haynes, a 
history of his life and achievements. Cliffside, Privately 

North Carolina Bibliography, 1953-1954 281 

Printed [c. 1954] xii, 99 p. il. Apply Mrs. Grover C. Haynes, 
Cliffside, N. C. 

JOHNSON, GERALD WHITE. Mount Vernon: the story of a 
shrine. New York, Random House [1953] 122 p. il. $2.75. 

LAMBERT, JOHN R. Arthur Pue Gorman. Baton Rouge, La, 
Louisiana State University Press, 397 p. il. $6.00. 

MASTERSON, WILLIAM HENRY. William Blount. Baton 
Rouge, Louisiana State University Press [1954] viii, 378 p. il. 

MEADOWCROFT, ENID (LA MONTE) The story of Andrew 
Jackson. New York, Grosset and Dunlap [1953] 182 p. il. 
$1.50. Juvenile. 

O'FLAHERTY, DANIEL. General Jo Shelby: undefeated Rebel. 
Chapel Hill, University of North Carolina Press, 1954. 437 p. 

PARSONS, DONALD. Portraits of Keats. Cleveland, O., World 
Publishing Co., 1954. 189 p. il. $10. 

POLLOCK, THOMAS CLARK, editor. Thomas Wolfe at Wash- 
ington Square, by Thomas Clark Pollock and Oscar Cargill, 
New York. New York University Press, 1954. xiii, 163 p. il. 

SANDERS, CHARLES RICHARD. The Strachey family, 1588- 
1932: their writings and literary associations. [Durham, 
N. C] Duke University Press, 1953. x, 337 p. il. $6.30. 

SCHENCK, CARL ALWIN, editor. The Biltmore immortals, 
biographies of 50 American boys graduating from the Biltmore 
Forest School. [Darmstadt, Germany, L. C. Wittich, pr. 1953] 
342 p. il. 

SELDEN, SAMUEL. Frederick Henry Koch, pioneer playmaker, 
by Samuel Selden and Mary Tom Sphangos. Chapel Hill, Uni- 
versity of North Carolina Library, 1954. (Library extension 
publication, v. 19, no. 4) vii, 92 p. il. $3.00 cloth, $1.50 pa. 

SHANKS, HENRY THOMAS, editor. The papers of Wiley Per- 
son Mangum: v. 3, 1839-1843. Raleigh, State Department of 
Archives and History, 1953. xxi, 521 p. il. Mailing fee $1.00. 

SOUTHERN social register, 1952/53. [Williamsburg, Va., Sou- 
thern Social Registrar Foundation, 1953] 1303 p. $12. 

STEVENSON, AUGUSTA. Wilbur and Orville Wright, boys 
with wings. Indianapolis, Bobbs-Merrill [1951] 192 p. il. $1.75. 

282 The North Carolina Historical Review 

SYRETT, HAROLD COFFIN. Andrew Jackson: his contribu- 
tion to the American tradition. Indianapolis, Bobbs-Merrill 
[1953] 298 p. $3.00. 

TAPPAN, GEORGE L. Andrew Johnson— not guilty. New 
York, Comet Press Books [1954] 139 p. $3.00. 

WOLFE, THOMAS. The correspondence of Thomas Wolfe and 
Homer Andrew Watt; edited by Oscar Cargill and Thomas 
Pollock. New York, New York. University Press, 1954. xi, 53 

p. il. $2.50. 

New Editions and Reprints 

ASHBURN, JESSE ANDERSON. History of the Fisher's River 
Primitive Baptist Association from its organization in 1832 
to 1904 . . . reprinted with a second volume, from 1905 to 
1953, by Francis Preston Stone. [Elon College, N. C, Primi- 
tive Baptist Publishing House, 1953] 350 p. il. $2.00. 

CASH, WILBUR JOSEPH. The mind of the South. Garden City, 
N. Y., Doubleday, 1954. 444 p. $.95, pa. 

CROZIER, WILLIAM ARMSTRONG. A key to southern pedi- 
grees. Second ed. Baltimore, Southern Book Company, 1953. 
80 p. $5.00. 

DRAPER, LYMAN COPELAND. King's Mountain and its 
heroes. Marietta, Ga., Continental Book Co., 1954. 612 p. il. $10. 

FORSTER, GARNET WOLSEY. Farm organization and man- 
agement. New York, Prentice-Hall, 1953. 430 p. il. $7.00. 

GREEN, PAUL. The lost colony ; a symphonic drama of Ameri- 
can history. Roanoke Island edition. Chapel Hill, University 
of North Carolina Press, 1954. 70 p. il. $2.50. 

HAWKS, FRANCIS LISTER. Narrative of the expedition of an 
American squadron to the China seas and Japan . . . abridged 
and edited by Sidney Wallach. London, MacDonald [c. 1952] 
xxxv, 304 p. il. $3.65. 

JAMES, POWHATAN WRIGHT. George W. Truett, a biog- 
raphy. Memorial edition. New York, Macmillan, [c 1953] 
xiii, 311 p. $3.00. 

McKNIGHT, JOHN P. The papacy, a new appraisal. London, 
McGraw-Hill [c. 1953] 400 p. 21 s. 

tutes of North Carolina . . . 1943 and 1951 supplement. Char- 
lottesville, Va., Michie Co., 1953. 6 v. $77.00 

North Carolina Bibliography, 1953-1954 283 

Criminal code and digest of North Carolina, by E. C. Jerome ; 
edited by Harry B. Skillman. 6th edition. Atlanta, Ga. Harri- 
son, 1954. lx, 1303 p. $27.50. 

OLDS, FRED A., compiler. An abstract of North Carolina wills 
from about 1760 to about 1800. 2nd edition. Baltimore, Sou- 
thern Book Company, 1954. 330 p. $10. 

RANEY, RICHARD BEVERLY. Handbook of orthopaedic surg- 
ery, by Albert R. Shands and Richard B. Raney. 4th ed. St. 
Louis, V. V. Mosby Co., 1953. 644 p. $8.00. 

SLAUGHTER, FRANK GILL. Air surgeon. London, Jarrolds, 

1954. 6 s. 
— The Galileans ; a novel of Mary Magdalene. Garden City, N. Y., 

Permabooks, c. 1954. $.35 pa. 
— Spencer Brade, M.D. London, Jarrolds, 1954. 240 p. 6s. 

WOLFE, THOMAS. Herrenhaus; schauspiel in drei akten und 
einem vorspiel. Hamburg, Rowohlt [1953] 83 p. $1.35. 

— Geweb und fels, roman. Hamburg, Rowohlt [1953] 690 p. 


The Discovery of New Britain. London, 1651. A facsimile re- 
print with an Introduction by Howard H. Peckham. (Ann 
Arbor : William L. Clements Library, University of Michigan. 
1954. Pp. 28. Folded map laid in.) 

Charles I in 1629 granted the land south of Virginia be- 
tween 31° and 36° north latitude to his attorney-general, 
Sir Bobert Heath. While he held title to Carolina, as the 
region was called for the first time, no organized attempts 
were made to settle it. A number of explorations were made, 
however, and several very interesting reports of these voy- 
ages appeared in print. 

The Discovery of New Brittaine, published in London in 
1651, was one of these. Edward Bland, a merchant of Vir- 
ginia, Abraham Wood, land owner and fur trader, two men 
described simply as "gentlemen," Elias Pennant and Sack- 
ford Brewster, two servants, and two Indian guides, set out 
from near modern Petersburg to explore the region to the 
south with the hope of establishing contacts with Indians 
which would lead to profitable trade and settlement. From 
August 27 to September 4, 1650, they traveled through the 
Albemarle region which they called New Britain. Upon 
their return to Virginia they petitioned and received from 
the Assembly of the colony permission to explore, settle, and 
trade in the territory they had visited. 

To publicize their venture, Bland and his associates re- 
sorted to the press. The Discovery of New Brittaine was in- 
tended to present the advantages of the area in such a light 
that none could resist the appeal to join in a migration to 
the southward. Written in journal form, the little book sings 
the praises of New Britain in glowing terms. Tobacco and ( 
sugar cane grew larger than in Virginia, corn was harvested 
twice a year, the rivers were packed with fish, salt was made 
even with inexperienced help, rivers were all navigable, and 
the climate was healthier and more temperate. 

The accounts of Indian life and customs are perhaps the 
most valuable contribution which the explorers left us. The 


Book Reviews 285 

conceit of the group in assigning such names as Blandina, 
Penna Mount, Woodford, and Brewster to the geographical 
features of the land is interesting. 

This tract, printed in an edition of 800 copies for the 
Clements Library Associates, makes the text available again. 
It has been reprinted several times, once in a limited fac- 
simile edition of ten copies in the Photostat Americana Series, 
but this is by far the most handsome reproduction. Only half 
a dozen copies of the original 1651 edition have survived and 
of these, four are in this country. 

Editor Peckham's brief introduction is entirely adequate 
including his statement that modern Tar Heels are inclined 
to accept Sir Walter Raleigh's inference that the territory be- 
tween 35 degrees and 37 degrees north latitude is closely 
akin to the Garden of Eden. 

William S. Powell. 

University of North Carolina Library, 

Chapel Hill. 

Selected Addresses of a Southern Lawyer. By Aubrey Lee 
Brooks. (Chapel Hill: The University of North Carolina Press. 
1954. Pp. vii, 165. $2.50.) 

This book contains seven addresses which were prepared 
and delivered by the author from 1917 to 1953. The sub- 
jects in chronological order are as follows: The Law and 
Twentieth Century Facts, 1917; Democrats and Republicans, 
1928; The Crisis: Causes and Suggested Cures, 1931; The 
Four Pillars of Prosperity, 1936; The Foundations of Free- 
dom, 1936; David Caldwell and His Log College, 1949; and 
Nathanael Greene, Neglected Revolutionary Hero, 1953. 
Each subject is of vital interest to the author and to the par- 
ticular audience to which he was speaking. The addresses are 
of general interest as commentaries upon the history of the 
period and upon the development of modern law. The two 
biographical sketches are of especial interest to North Caro- 

By profession a lawyer and always a student of history, 
the author is well equipped to discuss the subjects which he 

286 The North Carolina Historical Review 

has presented in these addresses. His concept of modern law 
developed in the first address is a mature statement of philos- 
ophy arrived at after many years of study and reflection. 
Steeped in party history and in the philosophy of Jefferson, 
he is a leading spokesman for the Democratic Party. Deeply 
rooted in the South, he has had a life-long interest in the 
problems of agriculture. He is the author of two previous 
works, Walter Clark: Fighting Judge, and A Southern Law- 
yer: Fifty Years at the Bar. With Hugh Talmage Lefler, he 
has edited The Papers of Walter Clark. 

Even though large concepts are developed in these ad- 
dresses, they make easy reading. Each subject is developed 
logically and forcefully with no diversions for the sake of 
oratory. Typically the style of the lawyer, the ultimate effect 
is convincing. Except for the political addresses in which 
some humor appears, the author relies entirely upon fact and 
logical development of his theme for holding his audience. 

Readers who differ with the author politically will not 
like his discussion of Democrats and Republicans, nor his 
analyses of the Depression and the problems of agriculture. A 
careful reading of the addresses, however, reveals a consis- 
tency of purpose in his devotion to the philosphy of Jeffer- 
son that characterizes him as a liberal who has more at stake 
than that of winning an election. 

Jason B. Deyton. 

Superintendent of Mitchell County- 
Public Schools, 

The Grange in North Carolina, 1929-1954. By Stuart Noblin. 
(Greensboro, N. C. : The North Carolina State Grange. 1954. 
Pp. ix, 60. $1.00.) 

Stuart Noblin has written a brief and cursory booklet to 
commemorate the silver anniversary of the North Carolina 
( New ) Grange. In documenting the activities of the organi- 
zation, the author divided the Grange's 25-year-old life his- 
tory into several major stages such as Reorganization, De- 
pression, New Deal, The War Years, and Since the War, and 

Book Reviews 287 

included repeated remarks of praiseworthy nature in the con- 
cluding section. The materials used are taken mainly from the 
official Journal Proceedings, 1929-1953. Most of the so-called 
"agricultural progress" recorded in the booklet (as sum- 
marized on page 48, for instance) may be conveniently 
grouped under the three-fold category as advocated by Dr. 
C. C. Taylor, namely, prices, markets, and credits. (The 
Farmers' Movement, 1953, p. 2; Rural Life in the United 
States, 1950, p. 510.) 

It is certainly encouraging to see that the historical pro- 
fession should be asked to take up such a task, particularly 
considering Prof. Noblin's competence in the field. However, 
the briefness of the volume conceals much of the author's 
time-consuming research and painstaking effort. For instance, 
only ten pages out of 53, excluding Appendix and Index could 
be assigned to the work of the organization during the critical 
years of the Depression and the New Deal. 

The import of the booklet should not be minimized by its 
cursory treatment, of course. Future historians who will 
treat agricultural history of the twentieth century in the fash- 
ion L. C. Gray did for the period up to the Civil War ( His- 
tory of Agriculture in the United States to 1860, 1933) will 
no doubt find the information contained in this volume use- 
ful. Moreover, a work like this should prove valuable to the 
understanding of the farmers' movement in North Carolina, 
as well as in the United States, since the farmers' organiza- 
tions have, in general, been the chief mouthpiece of such a 
movement, a consequence which even the Grange in the 
1870's, despite its original purpose, had not been able to 
escape. (The Farmers' Movement, p. 115.) This is particu- 
larly important if one goes along with Dr. Rudolph Heberle 
to treat social movement as a special kind of social group 
or social collective (Social Movements, 1951, p. 8). It should 
be made clear, however, that this does not imply that the 
farmer's organizations originated the movement. Rather, as 
emphasized by Taylor, the farmers' organizations joined the 
movement. (The Farmers' Movement, p. 8.) Viewing the 
farmers' organizations and movements within such a context, 

288 The North Carolina Historical Review 

Prof. Noblin was again prevented, due to the briefness of the 
work, from closely relating the local scene to the larger 
social-economic setting, and accordingly, interpreting and 
evaluating the activities of the Grange within the larger 
cultural framework. 

Haitung King. 
Jack W. Van Derhoof. 
Kansas Wesleyan University, 
Salina, Kansas. 

The Story of Kinston and Lenoir County. By Tannage C. John- 
son and Charles R. Holloman (Raleigh: Edwards & Broughton 
Company. 1954. Pp. ix. 413. Illustrated. $6.00.) 

This book is divided into three main divisions. The first 
part of eleven chapters, roughly one-half of the pages, is a 
chronological narrative of Kinston, Kingston at first, and the 
surrounding area from the earliest settlers to the present. In 
the beginning, early land grants and Richard Caswell and 
his family were empasized. 

The account from about 1800 is less systematic, but evi- 
dence is sufficient to explain the backwardness of the area 
until the coming of the railroad during the 1850's. The war 
checked progress. The invasion by the Union forces, the 
first and second battles of Kinston, and reconstruction were 
factors in its poverty. 

About 1885 Kinston began to grow and prosper. Its new 
prosperity was founded upon the growth and sale of tobacco. 
The last chapter, "Fifty Years of Remarkable Achievements," 
tells, among other things, about the coming to the area in 
1951 of the $40,000,000 Dupont plant, which should mark 
the beginning of a new era. 

The second part of the book, "wherein are presented bio- 
graphical sketches of some professional and business lead- 
ers—past and present," covers 138 pages and includes 72 
men, no women (the book is dedicated to the memory of 
Mrs. Laura Warters McDaniel). The authors explain that 
this space was not for sale, although only those who made 

Book Heviews 289 

contributions which made the publication of the book pos- 
sible, were included. 

The third part of the volume is the 61 pages in the ap- 
pendix. Early land grants, list of earliest settlers and of tax- 
ables in Dobbs County in 1766, etc., are included. An index 
is added. 

The authors have written a commendable book, one which 
is interesting. It is not a definitive history of the area, far 
from it, a fact fully recognized by its authors. Unfortunate- 
ly, the lack of money for a more comprehensive book caused 
serious deletions or omissions. Such subjects as early public 
education, establishment of the Graded School, control of 
alcoholic beverages, race relations, political parties and elec- 
tions were either omitted or sketchily treated. Errors are 
few. The marriage dates of Lemuel Harvey (p. 126) seem to 
be wrong. "William Blount was the brother of Thomas 
Blount, one of the signers for North Carolina of the Declar- 
ation of Independence" (p. 161). Does "one of the signers" 
refer to William or Thomas? In either case it is incorrect. 
The printing and general make-up are good. 

D. J. Whitener. 
Appalachian State Teachers College, 

The Lost Citadel. By Alexander Mathis. (New York: Pageant 
Press, 1954. Pp. 273. $4.00.) 

The sixteenth-century attempted colonizations at Roanoke 
Island have a fascination for the novelists. In the last cen- 
tury some eight or nine fiction writers have treated the pe- 
riod. Mr. Mathis, whose home is Norfolk, has written a 
straight narrative involving the Barlow-Amadas expedition 
as well as the Lane and White settlements. To provide some 
semblance of fictional movement, the author has given Man- 
teo, who along with Wanchese is the only character lasting 
the length of the book, a dominant role in the plot— if plot 
the novel can be said to have. There is no compelling love 
story, no leading hero and heroine. For the most part, Mathis 
depends on historical accounts, principally Conway Whittle 

290 The North Carolina Historical Review 

Sam's The Conquest of Virginia, rather than on his imagina- 
tion; he documents his sources in footnotes when he thinks 
the reader will judge the action too broadly departing from 
fact. Thus, as fiction, The Lost Citadel lacks both rounded 
characterization and sustained plot interest. 

Much is made of the 1584 expedition, with Thomas Hariot 
allowed an unhistorical berth in order that he may begin 
tutoring Manteo and Wanchese, who we are told are grand- 
sons of Chief Granganimeo. For the failure of the First Col- 
ony, Mathis blames Grenville, whose loiterings among the 
Spanish in the West Indies delayed the planting of crops 
at Roanoke and whose burning of the Indian village of Agos- 
cogoc over a lost silver cup irreparably alienated the pre- 
viously warm-hearted natives. Lane is portrayed as a just 
and wise governor never able to recover from the errors of 
the arrogant Sir Richard. As reasons for the departure of 
the Lost Colonists from Roanoke, Mathis lists hunger and 
Indian animosity. First, Manteo leads the English to the 
sands of Croatoan, then later to friendly, more fertile coun- 
try along the rivers, where they prosper for a while until 
they are almost completely wiped out by a sudden hostile 
Indian attack. Soon Eleanor Dare dies and, as the story ends 
Manteo is undertaking the education of eight-year-old Vir- 

Richard Walser. 

North Carolina State College, 


Privateers of Charleston in the War of 1812. By Harold A. 
Mouzon, (Charleston, S. C: Historical Commission of Charle- 
ston. 1954. Pp. 41.) 

This small paper-bound publication gives a brief history 
of privateering from the port of Charleston during the War 
of 1812. On June 18, 1812, the United States declared war 
on England and eight days later an act was passed by Con- 
gress authorizing the fitting out of ships as privateers to prey 
on British shipping. Early in July two ships, the Mary Ann 
and the Nonpareil, were ready to leave Charleston to begin 

Book Reviews 291 

their depredations. The Nonpareil was the first ship out but 
her career was relatively short— she mistook a British brig of 
war for a merchantman and was captured. The Mary Ann 
was more successful. Commanded by John P. Chazal, she 
took four prizes in one month and on her second cruise de- 
stroyed several small vessels. 

A Charleston-built vessel, the Saucy Jack, began privateer- 
ing with a great fanfare. Her various captains, Jervey, Sicard, 
and Chazal, were successful in capturing a number of valu- 
able prizes. Chazal brought the ship into Charleston on De- 
cember 31, 1814, seven days before the Treaty of Ghent 
had been signed and the war ended. 

Numerous other smaller vessels sailed the waters around 
Jamaica and the West Indies taking prizes. The largest of 
the privateers was the Decatur, commanded by Dominique 
Diron. She met the British naval schooner, the Dominica, de- 
feated her, and brought her into Charleston. 

Mouzon points out that, for a port of her size, the priva- 
teers of Charleston contributed largely to their owners, crews, 
and the country in the damage done to British shipping dur- 
ing the years of the war. His chief sources appear to be rec- 
ords in the National Archives and contemporary newspapers 
on file in Charleston. An appendix includes a list of the ves- 
sels, giving the type, date of commission, tonnage, arma- 
ment, and the name of the captain. Quotations are given from 
newspapers, logs of the ships, and an occasional letter writ- 
ten by a captain or member of the crew. 

Beth Crabtree. 

Department of Archives and History, 


Dr. J. G. M. Ramsey: Autobiography and Letters. Edited by 
William B. Hesseltine. (Nashville: Tennessee Historical Com- 
mission. 1954. Pp. xvi, 367. $5.00.) 

A railroad-building, agrarian aristocrat and state rights 
Democrat from the heart of the Parson Brownlow country 
is indeed something of an anomaly. Dr. Ramsey, perhaps 
best remembered as the author of the Annals of Tennessee, 

292 The North Carolina Historical Review 

managed to weave so many careers into his full life— medical 
doctor, farmer, banker, ferry operator, historian, poet, and 
Confederate treasury agent among them— that there are many 
problems in understanding him and his role in East Tennes- 
see's history. 

Unfortunately Dr. Ramsey wrote his memoirs when he 
was over seventy years old (he was born in 1797), apparent- 
ly in some haste and without benefit of adequate data or re- 
search. The result is a spotty, occasionally tiring account 
which Professor Hesseltine has wisely stiffened by the inser- 
tion of some of Ramsey's letters; these constitute over a third 
of the present volume. 

An advocate in the 1820's of rail communication with the 
south Atlantic seaboard, Dr. Ramsey's "Mecklenburg Poli- 
tics," as his transportation schemes were dubbed, embroiled 
him in bitter controversy with groups which favored the re- 
gion's concentration upon improvements in the navigability 
of the Tennessee River, especially at Muscle Shoals. Dr. Ram- 
sey visited Charleston in 1828 to publicize and promote his 
plan. He helped in assembling railway conventions at Ashe- 
ville in 1832 and Knoxville in 1836. But the panic of 1837, 
followed by a train of financial and political difficulties, de- 
layed realization of his dreams until 1858. Only then did the 
"East Tennessee and Georgia Rail Road" link isolated Knox- 
ville with the Atlantic coast. 

Professor Hesseltine has inserted two chapters made up 
of Ramsey's letters to fill yawning gaps in the autobiography. 
These deal with historical work on the Annals of Tennessee 
and with ante bellum politics. The former consists mainly 
of Ramsey's letters written from 1845 to 1853 to his history- 
minded friend and lifelong correspondent, Lyman C. Draper, 
who began his important collecting in Wisconsin in 1852. 
These letters reveal a livelier, more likeable author than does 
the autobiography, and they amusingly suggest the difficul- 
ties encountered in that era by amateur scholars like Ramsey. 
In informing Draper about the Nashville Historical Society's 
"hasty accouchement" and expiration, for example, he growl- 
ed that "Commerce chokes the growth of any such infants," 

Book Reviews 293 

and that "Yankeedom is taking a vigorous growth every- 
where" (p. 63). 

Dr. Ramsey wrote the inserted political letters in April, 
1858. Although he attached them to his manuscript autobi- 
ography, he marked them, sometime around 1870, as "Pri- 
vate/ 9 and "not to be published, but preserved as speculations 
of my own. . . ." (p. 83) Such reticence, which the editor does 
well to ignore, is understandable. Fire-eating secessionism, 
sectional chauvinism, and an impassioned racial defense of 
slavery and argument for re-opening the African slave trade 
were all too well remembered themes. The postwar South 
stunned and shaken by war and defeat, could hardly be re- 
ceptive to them. 

Dr. Ramsey died, quite unreconstructed, in 1884 at the 
age of eighty-seven. Three of his children had died during 
the war, one as a Confederate soldier; his beloved home, sit- 
uated at the head of the Tennessee River near Knoxville, was 
burned by Federal troops; and he and the remaining mem- 
bers of his family were literally storm-tossed by the tides of 
war. He had served the Confederacy until the end both as 
a surgeon and treasury agent. 

Approximately the last hundred pages of this volume con- 
sists of letters, filled with antiquarian lore about the "old 
border," which Ramsey wrote Draper after 1870. Professor 
Hesseltine's helpful annotation, along with the competent 
index, should make this a welcome addition to the published 
sources of Tennessee's, and the South's, history. 

Robert F. Durden. 

Duke University, 


Jeffersonian America: Notes on the United States of America. 
Collected in the Years 1805-6-7 and 11-12 by Sir Augustus 
John Foster, Bart. Edited with an introduction by Richard 
Beale Davis. (San Marino, California: The Huntington Libra- 
ry. 1954. Pp. xx, 356. $6.00.) 

The ubiquitous British traveler seems to be a constant 
force in American historiography. This travel book is slightly 

294 The North Carolina Historical Review 

different from the usual ones in that the author-diplomat 
(secretary of legation and later minister) had ample oppor- 
tunities for observation while in America from 1804 to 1808 
and again in 1811-12. Furthermore he did not give his im- 
pressions to the world until he had laboriously revised them 
some thirty years later. 

In the 1830's there was a flood of books on America by 
visiting Britishers. Foster thought that he could produce a 
better account so he set to work on his old notebooks and 
journals and produced in 1839 a full length manuscript which 
was revised in 1841-42 after a portion of it had been printed 
in the Quarterly Review for June, 1841. These manuscripts 
and notebooks now to be found in the Huntington Library 
or the Library of Congress have been carefully edited by 
Professor Richard Beale Davis of the English Department 
of the University of Tennessee and Jeffersonian America is 
the happy result. 

Despite Foster's expressed contempt for literary travelers 
who wrote "only for money or to gratify their spleen" (p. 
110) his own appraisals are somewhat short of objective. As a 
British aristocrat and churchman he was impressed with 
neither American democracy nor its non-conformity. Natural- 
ly Anglophile Federalists appealed more to him than the 
Republicans who numbered the "War Hawks" within their 
ranks. Consequently, he always praised New England grow- 
ing quite lyrical over Connecticut in particular, whereas he 
could only regret that Virginia governed the union through 
her "gentleman Jacobins." For society in Philadelphia and 
Boston he had only praise and he was duly impressed with 
the magnificence of New York Harbor. With regard to 
the nation s capital to which he devoted more than one 
hundred pages he was bitterly critical, referring as he did 
to the "transfer of the government to these marshes" (p. 54) 
but he admitted that it was an agreeable place to live since it 
afforded contact with so many characters, distinguished and 
otherwise. For Pennsylvania, outside of Philadelphia, he had 
nothing but scorn calling it "an omnium gatherum for people 
of all countries and religions" (p. 209). He did not care for 

Book Reviews 295 

"noisy blustering Germans or Irish who live by agitation" 
(p. 159) and he did not fail to criticise the "camping Metho- 
dists" and similar sects. 

Although he made several journeys in the northern and 
eastern parts of the United States Foster did not go south 
of Virginia except for the Dismal Swamp in North Carolina 
nor did he visit the west. To a large extent he relied on con- 
gressmen for information on these sections. Though he talk- 
ed with dozens of legislators there is no mention of Nathaniel 
Macon and Willis Alston is the only North Carolina congress- 
man mentioned by name. Foster thought that North Carolina 
was "less generally known and less visited than any of the 
states" (p. 168). South Carolina, in his estimation figured 
mainly as a breeder of "War Hawks." While admitting that 
the west might interest the natural or speculative philosopher 
he felt that it had little to offer the general traveler. 

To the reviewer the main interest in this book is the atti- 
tude that an upper class Englishman would take to certain 
American customs and institutions. Connecticut's retention 
of state officials over long periods seemed good to him, where- 
as the tendency to move state capitals to the interior was de- 
cidedly a backward step. In general the editing has been 
meticulously and intelligently done though one could wish 
for a few explanations of Foster's historical references such 
as North Carolina's apparent reluctance to join the American 
Revolution (p. 118) and some few of the diplomat's histori- 
cal inaccuracies have remained uncorrected as for example 
his statement that Britain acquired Acadie as a result of the 
Seven Years War (p. 335). The index also could be a little 
more complete. However, these factors do not appreciably 
detract from the real value of the book and one can agree 
with the editor's claim, "There is much to warrant the publica- 
tion of this book over a century after it was written." 

D. H. Gilpatrick. 

Furman University, 

Greenville, S. C. 

296 The North Carolina Historical Review 

Confederate Finance. By Richard Cecil Todd. (Athens: The 
University of Georgia Press. 1954. Pp. x, 258. $5.00.) 

This book, which was Mr. Todd's doctoral dissertation at 
Duke University, is pleasingly easy to read, despite the 
amount of detail that has necessarily been included. The 
main features of each chapter stand out clearly and the 
reader does not feel that he is dealing with scholarship car- 
ried to too fine a point. 

Mr. Todd has examined and evaluated a vast mass of ma- 
terial ranging from official manuscripts to contemporary 
newspapers. The unavailability of certain documents relating 
to the last days of the Confederacy has rendered it impos- 
sible to make the study absolutely complete, but this de- 
ficiency is not serious. 

The opening chapter deals with the organization and chief 
personnel of the Confederate Treasury, in which, of course, 
Mr. Memminger was the dominant figure. Each of the next 
four chapters takes up a source of funds— "Loans," "Treasury 
Notes," "Tariffs and Taxes," "Seizures and Donations"— and 
traces the use of that source through the four years of the 
Confederacy. The final chapter deals with "Financial Opera- 
tions Abroad." The separate treatment of these topics cer- 
tainly has merit; but the interrelations among them are so 
numerous that the reader has a problem of coordination. The 
author helps the reader over this difficulty by some repetition 
of material. At times, however, one wishes that all the meth- 
ods of finance had been discussed by significant periods of 

The Confederacy was, of course, forced to adopt many 
desperate means of finance. One is impressed, however, by 
the degree of success that these measures achieved in the 
face of the extraordinarily difficult circumstances. It is re- 
markable that an agrarian region, with very little liquid capi- 
tal and heavily dependent upon export trade, could, in spite 
of a strong coastal blockade, have devised any means of 
finance capable of sustaining the government and its armies 
for so long a period. Among the more interesting devices 
were the produce loan, the tithe levied on gross production, 

Book Reviews 297 

and the contracts for supplies that were made payable in 

There are few criticisms of style or diction to make. An 
occasional word or phrase has overtones that are not pleasing 
to Southern ears. For example, on pages 34 and 43 the Treas- 
ury is spoken of as "playing upon" patriotism in order to sell 
bonds. One wonders, too, why running the blockade should 
be called "blockade violations" (p. 186). These are, of course, 
minor points which in no way mar the objectivity of the work. 
The book is an excellent study that should be useful to both 
historians and economists. 

C. K. Brown. 

Davidson College, 


General Kirby Smith, C. S. A. By Joseph Howard Parks. (Baton 
Rouge: Louisiana State University Press. 1954. Pp. viii, 537. 

Few Confederate generals in 1862 seemingly had a more 
promising future than E. Kirby Smith. A hero of the first 
Manassas, where his brigade made the decisive outflanking 
maneuver, Kirby Smith was considered one of Johnston's 
best officers at the time of his transfer to East Tennessee. 
Nor did his reputation suffer as a consequence of the fruit- 
less invasion of Kentucky in 1862, for soon afterward he was 
promoted and later assigned command of the Trans-Missis- 
sippi Department, an unwieldy field of operations covering 
Missouri, Arkansas, Texas, and western Louisiana. 

Here General Smith's talents as a field commander had 
little chance to develop. His was essentially an administrative 
job, involving him in knotty problems of civil affairs and 
even foreign relations. After the fall of Vicksburg his task 
was virtually hopeless. Cut off from Richmond, confronted 
with "a vast extent of country to defend" and having "a 
force utterly inadequate for that purpose," Kirby Smith's 
best hope was to avoid military defeat until a decision was 
reached in the east. He seems to have been capable enough 
as an administrator, and if his strategy produced no brilliant 

298 The North Carolina Historical Review 

victories, the blame rests partly with subordinates who were 
either unfit or antagonistic. Frequent clashes with Taylor 
and an inherent distrust of the value of militia (which con- 
stituted a considerable portion of his forces ) perhaps explain 
why Kirby Smith was often unwilling to take risks. He was 
an admirer of Johnston, not Hood, and the situation called 
for a sound and prudent strategist. 

Dr. Parks's most recent contribution to the "Southern Bio- 
graphy Series" is well written and obviously the product of 
extensive research. It casts much light upon the complex 
situation in the Trans-Mississippi Department and presents 
a balanced picture of Kirby Smith, the soldier and adminis- 
trator. The volume lacks adequate maps, which is particu- 
larly unfortunate when the author deals with the little- 
known campaigns in the west. 

In a day when much of the Civil War literature is obvious- 
ly being written "for the market," it is indeed gratifying to 
read a good book about a worthwhile— and hitherto neglected 

Jay Luvaas. 

Duke University, 


General Lee's Photographer. By Marshall Fish wick. (Chapel 
Hill: The University of North Carolina Press. 1954. Pp. 94. 
Illustrations. $7.50.) 

This is the story of a young Confederate veteran who, re- 
turning from the Civil War, decided to learn photography as 
a livelihood and who, guided by his admiration for Lee and 
Jackson, set up shop in Lexington, Virginia. Eventually he 
became significant not only for his numerous studies of Lee 
and other famous figures, but for his many worthwhile con- 
tributions to the technique of photography. 

The title is justified by the fact that Miley devoted so much 
of his time, particularly .from 1866 to 1870, to the record of 
persons, objects and events associated with Robert E. Lee. 
These include portraits of the general made "as frequently 
as circumstances permitted," copies of all available pictures 

Book Reviews 299 

of the Custis, Lee and Washington families, and reproduc- 
tions of many documents such as Lee's will and army com- 
mission. The famous study of Lee on Traveller, probably the 
most popular photograph of the general, was made under 
conditions that illustrate the difficulties of the art in those 
days of the slow acting wet plate. Traveller kept switching 
his tail at the flies! 

Aside from being the photographic historian of picturesque 
and historic Lexington with its twin institutions, Washing- 
ton and Lee University and The Virginia Military Institute, 
its graves of Jackson and Lee, and its ghosts of the Civil 
War days, Miley was a deep and enthusiastic camera student 
of nature. Mr. Fishwick includes in his book a remarkable 
collection of landscapes to illustrate the artist's ability in 
this field. He also brings out the highly dramatic quality of 
Miley's work with such scenes as a mountaineer's family and 
the "Tallyho from Lynchburg." 

Working chiefly in isolation from professional photograph- 
ers, Miley developed his own dry plate method and experi- 
mented successfully with color work around the turn of the 
century. Although he was relatively unknown outside Rock- 
bridge County, Virginia, he left an "enduring record of him- 
self as an artist and of his period of history." 

The author, an associate professor at Washington and Lee 
University, has produced a handsome and readable volume. 

J. Walter Coleman. 

Gettysburg National Military Park, 

Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. 

Stonewall Jackson and The Old Stonewall Brigade. Edited by 
Richard B. Harwell. (Charlottesville: University of Virginia 
Press. 1954. Pp. vi, 77. $3.50.) 

Few of the current Civil War revivals offer so fresh a 
glimpse of war days as this slight volume of sketches by the 
gay young Captain Esten Cooke for a Richmond newspaper. 

This is a brief account of the character and personality of 
General T. J. Jackson and his then-famed brigade, written 

300 The North Carolina Historical Review 

by Cooke in the winter of 1862-1863 shortly before Jackson's 

This may be the very first such estimate of Jackson; at 
least its main lines have never been obscured, and anyone 
familiar with later Jackson lore will recognize the beginnings 
of many a more elaborate incident and legend. Cooke be- 
gan with a disclaimer: 

"I write in no hero-worshipping spirit ... I assure you . . . 
but I take my hat off and bow low to a great and noble soul 
like Jackson ... a real hero." 

The text itself is wandering, suffers from hasty organiza- 
tion, and appears skimpy indeed in light of later writings on 
Jackson. It has a considerable value, however, for those in- 
terested in heroes, the worship thereof, or the Army of North- 
ern Virginia and Jackson in particular. In Cooke's quick de- 
scription of Jackson in their first meeting, for instance, are 
lines which sing of the spirit of Stonewall: 

"The appearance of the famous . . . Stonewall was not im- 
posing. He wore that old sun-embrowned uniform once gray 
. . . positively scorched by sun. . . . The cap . . . matched the 
coat . . . and it tilted over the wearer's forehead, so far as to 
make it necessary for him to raise his chin, in looking at you. 
He rode in his peculiar forward-leaning fashion, his old raw- 
boned sorrel, gaunt and grim— but like his master, careless 
of balls and tranquil in the loudest hurly burly of battle." 

Perhaps Jackson's family and friends did not approve this, 
any more than they approved Cooke's announced biography 
of Stonewall a few weeks later, calling him: a "self-appoint- 
ed upstart ... a literary and social impostor." 

The family of Stonewall, as this reviewer has lately learned, 
is still aggressive in defense of the Stonewall legend. 

The editor, Mr. Harwell, lately with the Flowers Collec- 
tion of Duke University, is author and editor of several Con- 
federate studies of value. He is now on the faculty of Emory 

Burke Davis. 
Route 1, 
Guilford College. 

Book Reviews 301 

Indians of the Southern Colonial Frontier : The Edmond Atkin 
Report and Plan of 1775. Edited with an introduction by Wil- 
bur R. Jacobs. (Columbia: The University of South Caro- 
lina Press. 1954. Pp. xxxviii, 108. $5.00.) 

The conquest of vast areas of the colonial southwest was 
of momentous consequence in the history of our nation, for 
it helped in great measure to prepare the way for the inde- 
pendence of British colonies. Essential as was the western 
colonial movement to the American independence, its suc- 
cess was threatened by rivalry among the colonies for the 
Indian market and other conflicting interests. These hazards 
and perils originating from a decentralized Indian adminis- 
tration were well understood by Edmond Atkin, a prosperous 
merchant of pre-revolutionary South Carolina and a member 
of His Majesty's Council for the Province. When Atkins 
views on Indian affairs were requested by the Board of Trade, 
during one of his visits to London, the South Carolinian re- 
sponded on May 30, 1775 with a lengthy paper. This docu- 
ment was not without merit, for it contained shrewd analyses 
of French and British Indian policies; comments on the long- 
established practice of distributing Indian presents; and a 
critique on the status of trade with the Indians, unregulated 
for many years. Atkin knew the southern Indian tribes, their 
chiefs and headmen, from long personal contact. His report 
pictures the Red Men of the South with their painted war 
sticks and fluttering trophies, their homes and hunting 
grounds. He tells the story of those hardy, rude traders and 
hunters who ranged the southern wilderness beyond the 
frontier of the colonies, seeking profits among the remoter 
tribes of the lower Mississippi Valley, forming a commercial 
link between civilization and barbarism. 

The Atkin report embodied a scheme, not wholly new with 
the author but developed by him into a well-reasoned and 
overall approach, by which all Indian affairs in the colonies 
could be centralized under two imperial superintendents- 
one in the North and another for the South. Atkin's plan was 
nothing less than a scheme to extend, stabilize and strengthen 
British imperial authority over an untamed wilderness at a 
time when the British sensed that their situation was precar- 

302 The North Carolina Historical Review 

ious. The report reflects to a certain extent the attitudes of 
British bureaucracy that brought the American colonists to 
revolt scarcely two decades later. The document also gives 
a glimpse into the evolution of an important imperial office 
in the history of colonial America, for Atkin was named to 
the post of southern superintendent of Indian affairs which 
he advocated in his report. The ethnological value of the 
document, two centuries later, must not be minimized. 

Good work has already been done in chronicling the his- 
tory of the southern frontier by Chapman Milling; Robert 
L. Meriwether; Philip M. Hamer; Clarence E. Carter; Helen 
Louise Shaw; Thomas P. Abernethy; Clarence W. Alvord; 
and John Richard Alden. Now we must add the name of Wil- 
bur R. Jacobs, who has lifted the Atkin report out of obscuri- 
ty and by editoriahelucidations made it more meaningful to 
the present-day scholar of the colonial period, the general 
historian of the South, the student of the southern Indians. 
This recent offering by the Press of the University of South 

Carolina is most welcome. _, 

Gaston Litton. 

University of Oklahoma, 

Norman, Oklahoma. 

The Barber of Natchez. By Edwin A. Davis and William Ransom 
Hogan. (Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press. 1954. 
Pp. xi, 272. Illustrations. $4.00.) 

Three years ago the authors of The Barber of Natchez pub- 
lished William Johnsons Natchez: The Ante-Bellum Diary 
of a Free Negro, which was widely acclaimed for its content 
and the scholarship of the editors. This first book was a re- 
production of a fourteen-volume diary kept from 1835 to 
1851 by William Johnson, a free man of color, who was a 
barber and respected businessman of Natchez. The Barber 
of Natchez is a biographical volume based on the diary, ac- 
count books, and other papers and sources pertaining to Wil- 
liam Johnson. 

William Johnson, a mulatto slave aged five, was freed by 
his white master, William Johnson, in Natchez on February 
10, 1820. As a free man of color, he lived the remainder of 

Book Reviews 303 

his respectable and very successful life in Natchez, where 
he was the leading barber, a businessman who loaned money 
to whites, owner of city real estate and farm lands, 
slaveholder, and friend of many white men in all walks of 
life. He married a free woman of color in his home town, and 
their union was blessed with ten children before he was as- 
sassinated in 1851, presumably by Baylor Winn. Johnson's 
voluminous diary depicted all facets of the life of Natchez, 
and it is particularly interesting to note that the diarist would 
not associate on terms of equality with slaves and that he was 
rather careful of his association with free Negroes and with 
white men. 

The book is divided into three parts. The first contains 
eight chapters of biographical material. The second contains 
ten chapters of the diarist's activities and observations drawn 
from the diary. The titles of these chapters indicate the con- 
tents of the diary and of the book— "Chronicle of Everyday 
Natchez," "Barbershop Gossip," "Politics and Politicians," 
"The Tranquil Streets," "Pistols, Fists, and Bowie Knives," 
"Fires, Fire Fighters— and a Tornado," "Plasters, Pills, and 
Purgatives," "Thespians and Clowns," "Sports of the Turf," 
and "Aristocrats and Lesser Men." The third part is a four- 
chapter appraisal of the diarist. 

The book is a fascinating and well-written study of an un- 
usual free Negro in an unusual Mississippi city. The work of 
the authors in editing the diary is excellent in every respect. 
They have made another significant contribution with their 
biography of Johnson. The story of the preservation and ac- 
quisition of the William Johnson Papers is almost as amaz- 
ing as the story of the life of the man. The reviewer is re- 
minded that he was offered these papers in 1939 for the 
sum of $1,000.00, which he was then unable to raise. After 
seeing the results of their acquisition by Louisiana State Uni- 
versity, he has no regrets, for he would never have done as 
well with them as Dr. Davis and Dr. Hogan have done in 
their two outstanding volumes. 

William D. McCain. 

Department of Archives and History, 

Jackson, Miss. 

304 The North Carolina Historical Review 

Gustav Dresel's Houston Journal. Translated and edited by Max 
Freund. (Austin: University of Texas Press. 1954. Pp. xxx, 
168. $4.00.) 

Gustav Dresel was only nineteen when he left Geisenheim, 
Germany, in 1837 and came to North America. Son of a 
prosperous merchant, young Dresel was seeking to broaden 
his business education and to experience the challenge of 
frontier life. He landed in New York, spent a winter with 
the Pennsylvania Dutch, moved across to Iowa, came down 
the Mississippi to New Orleans, and finally made his way 
to the new Republic of Texas. For more than two years the 
Gulf Coast country between Houston, New Orleans, and 
Natchez was his theater of operations. He worked as book- 
keeper and commission agent in the food and dry goods busi- 
ness and in time accumulated enough capital to speculate 
in grain and land. Homesickness and fear of yellow fever 
prompted Dresel's return to Germany in 1841. Depreciating 
Texas currency had kept him from becoming rich, and recur- 
ring attacks of fever had nearly wrecked his health; yet his 
experiences in America had given the young German "an 
independent position in the world"— ample reward, he felt, 
for his trials and tribulations. 

Back in his homeland Dresel wrote an account of his so- 
journ in America, in part to stimulate interest in German im- 
migration to Texas. He then returned to Texas in 1847 as 
agent-general in Galveston for the "Society for the Protec- 
tion of German Immigrants in Texas," the most important 
German immigration agency in Texas. This new venture had 
scarcely begun, however, when Dresel was struck down with 
yellow fever. He died in September, 1848. 

Compared to the role played by some of his fellow coun- 
trymen Gustav Dresel was a minor figure in the settlement 
of Texas. Therefore the value of the journal he wrote about 
his first visit to the United States lies principally in the excel- 
lent literary style with which Dresel wrote and the acute 
observations he made of frontier life and customs. The ac- 
count was written five to six years after the event (though 
apparently from copious notes taken during his stay), and 

Book Reviews 305 

is tinged throughout with the idealism of youth. Dresel also 
sermonized from time to time on the virtues of the German 
race and hard work. Nevertheless, the author painted a good 
word picture of life in a raw society. 

Gustav Dresel's story lay unpublished until 1922. It has 
only now been translated by Max Freund, professor emeri- 
tus of Germanic languages at The Rice Institute under the 
somewhat misleading title of Gustav Dresel's Houston Jour- 
nal. Only a fraction over one-half of the book deals with 
Dresel's experiences in Texas; scarcely a quarter on condi- 
tions in Houston. This fault may lead historians interested 
in the customs, manners, morals, and travel of people from 
Pennsylvania to the Gulf Coast to overlook this slender vol- 
ume. An excellent job of bookmaking by the translator and 
the University of Texas Press could have been improved by 
including at least one map of Dresel's wanderings. The re- 
viewer is also old-fashioned enough to prefer footnotes at 
the bottom of the page rather than tucked away at the back 
of the book. But these are relatively minor criticisms. Profes- 
sor Freund and the University of Texas Press are to be com- 
mended for making this work available to a wider reading 

James A. Tinsley. 

University of Houston, 

Houston, Texas. 

Hugh Roy Cullen: A Story of American Opportunity. By Ed 
Kilman and Theon Wright. (New York: Prentice-Hall, Inc. 
1954. Pp. viii, 369. $4.00.) 

A man so generous to agencies of social betterment as 
Hugh Roy Cullen surely deserves a better biography. Re- 
plete with extravagant and repetitious statements, all un- 
substantiated, this volume could scarcely be considered trust- 
worthy by serious students. The authors do not even verify 
the efforts of Cullen's grandfather to establish a school sys- 
tem in the Republic of Texas. Their journalistic abhorrence 
of footnotes might well have permitted a reference in the 

306 The North Carolina Historical Review 

text to the House Journal, Regular Session, 1839, p. 220. No 
doubt this same grandiose carelessness permitted the mis- 
spelling of Anadarko on the end papers and made Mrs. Car- 
ter Glass president of Sweet Briar College. 

The most interesting aspect of the biography concerns the 
oil business, although it should be borne in mind that Cul- 
len's "horse-sense judgment" about finding oil was usually 
accompanied by geological data. Yet he succeeded in area 
after area which had already been worked by experienced 
oil men. His belief in deep drilling sent him to "the grave- 
yard of Texas" oil men, the Washburn Ranch, which had al- 
so been surveyed by the eminent De Golyer firm of Dallas 
and pronounced without indication of oil. Nevertheless, Cul- 
len s "creekology" soon had 31 producing wells on the Wash- 
burn Ranch. 

The philanthropic and political activities of Cullen re- 
ceive perhaps more emphasis than oil. The bulk of his mag- 
nificent charitable donations, approximately $175,000,000, 
has gone into the Houston area, but his political activities 
have often been on a national scale. Described as an "inde- 
pendent voter" in 1907 and as a Republican since 1928, Cul- 
len's aim has been to split the Democratic party in Texas 
and to elect an isolationist Republican president. The authors 
cite the chief criticism made by Cullen's political foes, that 
"discovering an oil well doesn't necessarily qualify a man to 
be political godfather to an entire nation" (p. 272). 

Nannie M. Tilley. 
East Texas State Teachers College, 
Commerce, Texas. 

American Academy of Fine Arts and American Art Union. By 
Mary Bartlett Cowdrey. (New York, N. Y. : New- York His- 
torical Society. 1953. vol. I: Introduction, Pp. xiv, 311, illus- 
trated. Vol. II Exhibition Record, Pp. vi, 504, index. $7.50.) 

This comprehensive presentation of the American Acade- 
my of Fine Arts and the American Art Union (1816-1852) 
is organized in two volumes. One volume, subtitled Introduc- 
tion, deals with the history of the two organizations; the 

Book Reviews 307 

other, subtitled Exhibition Record, is a listing of all paintings 
exhibited by the Art Union. 

Miss Cowdrey, in the introductory volume, has assembled 
the following: a history of the American Academy of Fine 
Arts, by Professor Theodore Sizer of Yale University; a his- 
tory of the American Art Union, by Charles E. Baker of the 
New- York Historical Society; a chronological review of all 
Art Union publications by Mary Bartlett Cowdrey of Smith 
College Museum of Art; and a complete record of the auction 
sale which, in 1852, marked the end of this organization. This 
record of sales is compiled by Malcolm Stern, Jr., of Weslyan 

Professor Sizer, in his essay on the Academy, establishes 
in his introduction the general character of this organization, 
founded, as John Trumbull said, "by gentlemen of taste and 
fortune." The genesis of the organization and its historical 
role is briefly summarized. Sizer then proceeds with a year 
by year account of its activities, from the lofty aspirations 
of its founders to its end under the rigid and dictatorial di- 
rection of the "patriot artist," John Trumbel. The proceed- 
ings of this organization, the quest for plaster casts of antique 
sculpture, copies of old master paintings, and the elevated 
intention of its directors reflect the survival of 18th century 
taste. A reliance on European tradition, the denial of con- 
temporary artists, and the overbearing personality of Trum- 
bel, its director for nineteen years, bred opposition and con- 
flict. Finally inaction, discontent, and apathy brought the 
end of the organization in 1840. 

Remnants of the American Academy can be found in the 
Apollo Association which soon became the American Art 
Union. It was against ideals of the Academy that these rival 
and successor organizations were founded. Mr. Baker, with 
supporting documentation, recounts the dramatic episode of 
this organization, dedicated to the cause of living American 
artists—democratic in structure and practice and coping with 
issues many of which are still present today. The life of the 
American Art Union is here depicted as turbulent. Even in 
its greatest success, scathing criticism, dissention, and unrest 
prevailed. The tremendous task which the Union had set 

308 The North Carolina Historical Review 

for itself, the patronage of artists and the education of the 
public in matters of art and taste, was nevertheless pursued 
with vigor. 

The Union had for its financial support a subscription 
membership, the returns from which were applied to the 
purchase of paintings. These paintings were exhibited in 
the Union's galleries and then distributed to members 
through annual lotteries. This system, which gave patronage 
to artists all over the country, and which brought paintings 
into the homes of many who otherwise could not afford them, 
was both the success and failure of the Union. After having 
been repeatedly approved by the New York State Legisla- 
ture, in 1852 the lottery system was ruled illegal by the 
courts. The lottery was an indispensible part of the organi- 
zation and without it there was little hope of the Union's 
survival. All holdings were sold at auction, the members ap- 
peased, and all operations ceased in 1853. 

The contribution of the several authors in the introductory 
volume has been skillfully integrated; even a marked similar- 
ity of style and technique prevades. In each of the three 
major essays, the material is presented with strict adherence 
to chronology. A terse commentary, interspersed with a 
wealth of quotations from contemporary documents, excites 
a sense of immediate identity with the strivings, achieve- 
ments, and failures of these two organizations. Chronology, 
often faltering, here achieves a sustained continuum. With 
no sacrifice to scholarship, the historians have used a tech- 
nique which suggests a fine documentary film supported by 

The exhibition record compiled by Miss Cowdrey lists 
alphabetically by artist all paintings exhibited by the Art 
Union. This list includes titles of the paintings, dates and 
addresses of artists, dates of exhibition, purchasers, lottery 
winners, and other supporting information when possible. 
This volume not only completes the record of this institution, 
but serves as a biographical dictionary of many artists not 
included in the standard reference sources. The introduc- 
tory volume is a requisite for all scholars of American art 

Book Reviews 309 

and history; and, more than this, it should find a wide public 
among all interested in American culture. 

It is regrettable that the notes do not give a more com- 
plete identification of many of the people referred to in the 
text. Also, one wonders why Charles Baker is not included 
on the title page along with Professor Sizer. The foreword 
by James Flexner affords an excellent guide to the reader, 
but this might well have stated explicitly the overall plan of 
the two volumes. 

At a time when North Carolina is the scene of a growing 
interest in art, with art groups forming throughout the State, 
the organization, structure, and experience of the American 
Academy of Fine Arts and the American Art Union have 
pertinence to the art interest of North Carolina which can 
scarcely be overstated. 

Ben F. Williams. 

North Carolina State Art Gallery, 



The Carteret County Historical Society met in January 
for the quarterly meeting with almost a full membership 
present. Twenty new members have been added to this 
group. Presentation was made by Mrs. John S. Jones of Cedar 
Point of a copy of the Carteret County Herald which con- 
tained a reprint of an oration delivered in Beaufort on July 4, 
1876. Mr. Milton F. Perry of West Point, New York, former 
curator at Fort Macon, sent the society a well-compiled his- 
tory of the Spanish attack on Beaufort in 1747. Mr. F. C. 
Salisbury displayed a group of pictures and cuts which were 
of interest to the society. 

On January 20 the Scotland County Historical Society was 
organized with approximately 35 people present. The meet- 
ing was presided over by Mr. A. B. Gibson of Laurinburg, 
who was elected president. Other officers elected were: Miss 
Margaret John of Laurinburg, vice-president; Mr. L. T. Gib- 
son, secretary; and Miss Lila Mae Gill, treasurer. An appeal 
was made by the group to natives of the county asking for 
aid in acquiring old land grants and other historical docu- 
ments, to be placed on file in the county library. 

Mr. Bascombe Lamar Lunsford of Leicester spoke on folk- 
lore in western North Carolina at the mid-winter meeting of 
the Western North Carolina Historical Association on Janu- 
ary 29 in Hendersonville. Dr. Rosser H. Taylor was also a 
featured speaker. Three committees were announced during 
the meeting: A committee to select the recipient of the Asso- 
ciation's cup which is presented to the person adjudged the 
outstanding historian of the year; a nominating committee; 
and a committee to work with other civic groups and indi- 
viduals to secure a commemorative stamp honoring the Chero- 
kee chief, Sequoyah, who devised the Cherokee alphabet. All 
committees will report at the April meeting which is to be 
held in Asheville. The Hendersonville chapter of the Daugh- 
ters of the American Revolution, the United Daughters of the 


Historical News 311 

Confederacy, and the Literary Department of the Woman's 
Club co-sponsored the meeting. A coffee hour followed the 
meeting which was attended by over 100 people and was 
one of the largest groups assembled at a meeting of the asso- 
ciation. Colonel Paul Rockwell, chairman of the membership 
committee, reported on the drive for members and Mr. George 
W. McCoy of Asheville, reported on the Thomas Wolfe liter- 
ary cup proposal. It was decided to accept the cup if the 
Thomas Wolfe Memorial Association desires to give the 
award annually. The Association began publication in Jan- 
uary of The Western North Carolina Associations History 
Bulletin, a newspaper which is to be published quarterly as 
the official news organ of the membership. Mr. Clarence W. 
Griffin of Forest City is the editor and requests material 
from the members for the papers. 

New officers were elected at the quarterly meeting of the 
Pasquotank Historical Society held January 22 in Elizabeth 
City. General John E. Wood was re-elected president; Mr. 
Clarence Morse was named vice president; Mr. Fred Mark- 
ham III, secretary; and Miss Olive Aydlett, treasurer. Gen- 
eral Wood presented a report of the first year's activity in- 
cluding not only the accomplishments of the society but also 
the failures and plans for the future. Plans were announced 
for a mid-day luncheon for the April meeting. A report on the 
search for houses and structures which are 100 years old or 
older was given. The group has found that there are only 36 
such buildings remaining within the limits of Elizabeth City. 
A catalog of homes constructed during or prior to 1855 is being 
compiled and a copy sent to the Literary and Historical As- 
sociation headquarters in Raleigh. 

A celebration is being planned for the centennial of Polk 
County by a group of interested people who met at the court- 
house in Columbus, February 3. The observance will be held 
in May, with the ceremonies planned by an executive com- 
mittee composed of representatives of each of the six town- 
ships in the county. Officers elected to direct the planning are: 
Mr. W. A. McFarland, president; Mr. James Johnson, sec- 

312 The North Carolina Historical Review 

retary; Mr. Woodrow Hague, treasurer; and three vice presi- 
dents—Mrs. George Taylor, Mrs. Seth Vining, Sr., and Mr. 
Carroll P. Rogers. Mrs. Sadie Patton and Mr. Clarence W. 
Griffin, members of the Executive Board of the State Depart- 
ment of Archives and History, will assist in planning the 
time, place, and program. Dr. Christopher Crittenden, Di- 
rector of the Department, has been invited to attend. 

Work on the restoration of the Old Bunker Hill bridge, near 
Claremont, one of the three remaining covered bridges in 
North Carolina, was started in February. Judge Wilson War- 
lick of Newton, chairman of the committee which was ap- 
pointed by the Catawba County Historical Association, has 
announced that the bridge is to be restored as nearly as 
possible to its original appearance. To insure continuing care 
of the project the association will pledge in a 25-year lease 
with the R. K. Bolick estate, owner of the property on which 
the bridge is located, to maintain it over that period. 

A pamphlet has been received by the department, Sketches 
of Burke County, which was prepared by Miss Cordelia 
Camp, former superintendent of Burke County schools. The 
material covers the years 1950 through 1952 and was taken 
from several studies made by the eighth-grade pupils of 
their respective school districts. The primary intention of the 
booklet is to acquaint the school children with the history, 
geography, and other salient factors of Burke County. 

Mr. C. B. Eller, vice president of the Wilkes County His- 
torical Association, presided at the February meeting held 
in the town hall of North Wilkesboro. Papers were read by 
Mrs. Margaret Bloomfield, whose topic dealt with a private 
school operated by Mrs. Mamie Barber beginning in 1879; 
and Mrs. L. G. Critcher, whose topic was the Moravian Falls 
Academy which operated from 1876 to 1906. Mr. Robert 
O. Poplin, Jr., chairman of the association's committee for se- 
curing historical markers in Wilkes County, reported on the 
work of his committee and the correspondence with the state 
marker advisory committee. 

Historical News 313 

Interest in the location of an "English house" built for the 
"Great Commander" of the Indians who inhabited Roanoke 
Island in the middle seventeenth century has been renewed 
because of a search by Mr. P. B. Zevely, former resident of 
Winston-Salem. Mr. Zevely's interest was aroused by Mr. Ben 
Shannon of Manteo who as a youth uncovered buried "bricks" 
on Roanoke Island. Electronic search produced sufficient evi- 
dence to begin digging at the site and pieces of "bricks" were 
found and specimens were forwarded to the Smithsonian In- 
stitution for classification. The Colonial Records of North 
Carolina relate that in 1653 Francis Yeardley of Virginia sent 
"... a boat with six hands, one being a carpenter, to build 
the king an English house . . ." and it is thought that bricks 
may have been used on the structure. Mr. Ay cock Brown of 
Manteo has written a story which he sent to the Department 
of Archives and History dealing with the mystery of the 

Mr. W. Frank Burton, head of the Division of Archives, 
State Department of Archives and History, spoke to the Pitt 
County Historical Society on January 27. His subject was 
"Preservation and Restoration of Historical Manuscripts." 

Mr. Burton reports that within the past two months Miss 
Pamela Cocks of the New Zealand Archives and Mrs. Estela 
de Grandi of the Controller General's Office in Panama have 
spent several days in Raleigh studying the archival and record 
management programs of the State Department of Archives 
and History. The Division of Archives recently accessioned 
the board minutes and the policy-making correspondence 
of the Department of Conservation and Development, 1927- 

In a meeting held in the library in Smithfield on March 
19, Mr. D. L. Corbitt, head of the Division of Publications, 
State Department of Archives and History, assisted an in- 
terested group of Johnston County citizens in the temporary 
organization of a local historical society. The group decided 
to meet again on April 1, at 8 P. M. in the courthouse to 
perfect a permanent organization. Temporary officers elected 

314 The North Carolina Historical Review 

were: Mr. H. V. Rose of Smithfield, president; Miss Mildred 
Oliver of Pine Level, vice president; and Mrs. W. B. Beasley 
of Smithfield, secretary. A great deal of interest was mani- 
fested in the Bentonville Battlefield as the first meeting was 
held on the ninetieth anniversary of the beginning of the 

On January 14 Mr. W. S. Tarlton, researcher for the De- 
partment of Archives and History, spoke before the Blooms- 
bury Chapter of the Daughters of the Revolution, following 
a luncheon meeting held at the Woman's Club, Raleigh. His 
subject was "The Restoration of Somerset Place at Pettigrew 

At a meeting held in Chapel Hill on January 28 the Ad- 
visory Committee on Historical Markers approved sixteen 
new markers for North Carolina highways: Swannanoa Tun- 
nel, Ridgecrest, Buncombe County; Wachovia Museum, Win- 
ston-Salem, Forsyth County; Rose Greenhow, Wilmington, 
New Hanover County; Scotch Hall, Bertie County; Wingate 
Junior College, Wingate, Union County; William B. Umstead, 
Durham County; 4-H Club, Hertford County; Clyde R. Hoey, 
Shelby, Cleveland County; Sherman's March, Hoke County; 
Willis Smith, Raleigh, Wake County; Levi Coffin, Guilford 
College, Guilford County; James Iredell, Jr., Edenton, Cho- 
wan County; Moses A. Curtis, Hillsboro, Orange County; 
Lake Company, Creswell, Washington County; Bethabara, 
Forsyth County; and High Point College, High Point, Guil- 
ford County. 

On March 11 in ceremonies held in the auditorium of the 
Raeford High School, two historical markers for Hoke Coun- 
ty were unveiled. One of the markers points out the site of the 
Civil War Battle of Monroe's Crossroads, fought on March 10, 
1865, between Federal Calvary units and the Confederate 
forces led by General Wade Hampton. The other marker indi- 
cates the site of Edenborough Medical College, the first medi- 
cal school chartered by the state of North Carolina in 1867. 
The Department of Archives and History was represented by 

Historical News 315 

Mr. W. S. Tarlton, who delivered the main speech and pre- 
sented the two markers. Mr. Paul Dickson, publisher of the 
Raeford News- Journal, was master of ceremonies. 

The State Department of Archives and History's Advisory 
Committee on Records Preservation held its first meeting at 
the State Archives on February 4. The group was welcomed 
by Dr. Christopher Crittenden, Director; Dr. W. T. Laprade, 
member of the Department's Executive Board, made an in- 
troductory statement; Mr. W. Frank Burton, State Archivist, 
conducted a tour of the Archives and Record Center and 
explained the archives and records management program 
to the committee; and a general discussion followed. The 
members of the committee are: Dr. James W. Patton, direc- 
tor of the Southern Historical Collection at the University, 
chairman of the committee; Dr. Laprade; Dr. Fletcher M. 
Green, chairman, department of history at the University of 
North Carolina; Drs. Hugh T. Lefler and J. C. Sitterson, of 
the same department of history; Drs. William B. Hamilton, 
Richard L. Watson, and Robert H. Woody of the department 
of history, Duke University; and Dr. Frontis W. Johnston, 
head, department of history, Davidson College. 

In Raleigh, February 11, the executive committee of the 
Tryon Palace Commission met with the architect, Mr. Wil- 
liam G. Perry, and approved plans for the main building of the 
Palace. It was voted to call bids to be opened in Raleigh, 
March 16. On the appointed day the bids were opened and 
William Muirhead of Durham got the general contract with 
a low bid of $577,000. He agreed to complete the job in 600 
consecutive days. Other contracts for plumbing, heating, and 
electrical installations totalling $85,312 were also awarded at 
the meeting. 

The Department of Archives and History entertained the 
Sir Walter Cabinet on March 15. Slides were shown of his- 
toric houses in the state, North Carolina ladies, costumes from 
the 1780's to the 1930's were modeled, and a coffee hour was 

316 The North Carolina Historical Review 

North Carolinians who took part in the sessions of the 
American Historical Association in New York, December 
28-30, and their contributions, were as follows: Dr. John Gillin 
of the University of North Carolina, "An Anthropologist's 
View of Teaching of Latin American History"; Mr. Oliver 
H. Orr, Jr., of the same institution, a paper on Charles B. 
Aycock; Dr. James L. Godfrey, also of the University, dis- 
cussion of "British Labor Between the Wars"; and Dr. Sam- 
uel R. Spencer of Davidson College, a paper on Booker T. 
Washington. Dr. Christopher Crittenden represented the De- 
partment of Archives and History. 

At the University at Chapel Hill, Dr. Wallace E. Caldwell 
has returned to his teaching duties after a leave during the 
fall semester. While on leave he lectured at the University 
of St. Andrews on the general subject of the Age of Pericles. 
Dr. James L. Godfrey is acting as chairman of the European 
section for the Southern Historical Association in preparing 
the program for 1955. He is the recipient of a research grant 
from the University and will continue his studies on the Labor 
Government in England. Dr. George V. Taylor is the recipient 
of a research grant from the University and will continue work 
on the political activities of business men during the French 
Revolution. Dr. Harold A. Bierck will attend a meeting of 
the United States Committee of the Pan-American Insti- 
tute of Geography and History as an official delegate. Mr. 
William M. Geer is the recipient of a Danforth Foundation 
Teacher Study Program for the year beginning June 1, 1955. 

Mr. Hugh F. Rankin, who spent three and a half years at 
the University of North Carolina studying under a Morehead 
Fellowship, has accepted the position as research associate at 
Colonial Williamsburg. Mr. Rankin was twice winner of the 
R. D. W. Connor Award for the best article on North Caro- 
lina history in this journal. 

The Department of Social Studies at Appalachian State 
Teachers College, Boone, announces a workshop to be held 
July 5-15 with Dr. D. J. Whitener acting as director. Dr. 

Historical News 317 

Christopher Crittenden, director of the Department of Ar- 
chives and History, will be a member of the staff and Mrs. 
Lois H. Floyd will serve as co-ordinator. The course will 
carry graduate credit. 

News items from Duke University are: General Clark 
Eichelberger of Asheville addressed the Trinity College His- 
torical Society on December 8, and on February 16 Dr. An- 
drew Whiteside read a paper on the various views of the 
philosophical origins of National Socialism. "American Poli- 
tical History," by Dr. Richard L. Watson, appeared in the 
South Atlantic Quarterly for January. Dr. E. Malcolm Carroll 
delivered a Blazer Lecture at the University of Kentucky 
recently on German historians' views of the recent past of 
their country. 

Dr. Lillian Parker Wallace of Meredith College attended 
the annual meeting of the American Historical Association in 
New York. Dr. Alice B. Kieth, also of Meredith, addressed the 
Altrusa Club of Raleigh on "The Organization of American 
States and Peace." 

Dr. Samuel R. Spencer of Davidson College has been pro- 
moted to professor of history and continues his duties as 
dean of students. 

A 151-page mimeographed index of the Life and Corre- 
spondence of James Iredell by Griffith J. McRee has been 
prepared by Helen Dortch Harrison and issued by the North 
Carolina Collection of the University of North Carolina Li- 
brary. As long as the supply lasts, copies may be ordered for 
fifty cents in coin or stamps (to cover the packing and pos- 
tage) from Mr. William S. Powell, Box 870, Chapel Hill, 
North Carolina. 

Radcliffe College and the department of history of Harvard 
University will offer for a second time an eight-week summer 
Institute on Historical and Archival Management. The course 
is open to men and women college graduates and will be held 

318 The North Carolina Historical Review 

from June 20 to August 12. Dr. Christopher Crittenden will 
be a member of the staff. Further information may be ob- 
tained from Mr. Earle W. Newton, Institute on Historical and 
Archival Management, 10 Garden St., Cambridge 38, Mass. 

Announcement has been made of the nineteenth annual 
meeting of the Society of American Archivists in Nashville, 
Tennessee, on October 10-11, 1955. The Tennessee State Li- 
brary and Archives, headed by Dr. Dan M. Robison, will be 
host, and co-sponsors will include the Tennessee Historical 
Society, Vanderbilt University, and the George Peabody Col- 
lege for Teachers. Headquarters will be in the Andrew Jack- 
son Hotel. 

The American Historical Association announces the terms 
for the 1955 competition for the Albert J. Beveridge Award 
which is presented yearly by the Association. The deadline for 
the submission of applications and manuscripts is May 1, 1955. 
Further details may be obtained from Dr. John Tate Lanning, 
chairman, Duke University, Durham. 

Books which have been received recently include the follow- 
ing: Harold E. Dickson, A Hundred Pennsylvania Buildings 
Messages of the Governors of Tennessee, 1835-1845, Volume 
(State College, Pennsylvania: Bald Eagle Press, 1954); Tal- 
mage C. Johnson and Charles R. Holloman, The Story of Kin- 
ston and Lenoir County (Raleigh: Edwards and Broughton 
Company, 1954); Bell Irvin Wiley, Rebel Private: Front and 
Rear (Austin: University of Texas Press, 1954); Richard Beale 
Davis, Jeffersonian America (San Marino, California: The 
Huntington Library Publications, 1954); Robert H. White, 
Messages of the Governors of Tennessee, 1835-1845, Volume 
III, ( Nashville : The Tennessee Historical Commission, 1954 ) ; 
Donald G. Morgan, Justice William Johnson: The First 
Dissenter (Columbia: University of South Carolina Press, 
1954); The New Zealand Official Year Book, 1954, (Welling- 
ton, New Zealand: By Authority: R. E. Owen, Government 
Printer, 1954); R. G. W. Vail, Knickerbocker Birthday, A 
Sesqui-Centennial History of the New York Historical Society, 

Historical News 319 

1804-1954 (New York: The New-York Historical Society, 
1954); Ernest McNeill Eller, Whispering Pines (Winston- 
Salem, North Carolina: John F. Blair, Publisher, 1954); Manly 
Wade Wellman, Dead and Gone, Classic Crimes of North 
Carolina (Chapel Hill: The University of North Carolina 
Press, 1955); Elisha P. Douglass, Rebels and Democrats: The 
Struggle for Equal Political Rights and Majority Rule dur- 
ing the American Revolution (Chapel Hill: The University 
of North Carolina Press, 1955); Howard McKnight Wilson, 
The Tinkling Spring, Headwater of Freedom. A Study of the 
Church and Her People, 1732-1952 (Richmond, Virginia: 
Garrett and Massie, Inc., 1954); American Heritage, The 
Magazine of History ( 551 Fifth Avenue, New York 17, New 
York: James Parton, Publisher, February, 1955); From Mine 
to Market, The History of Coal Transportation on the Nor- 
folk and Western Railway (New York: New York University 
Press, 1954); Stuart Hall Smith and Clairborne T. Smith, Jr., 
The History of Trinity Parish, Scotland Neck; Edgecombe 
Parish, Halifax County (Scotland Neck, North Carolina: Pri- 
vately Published through the Battle Foundation, 1955); and 
Louis D. Rubin, Jr., Thomas Wolfe: The Weather of His 
Youth (Baton Rouge: The Louisiana State University Press, 


Dr. William Frank Zornow is assistant professor of history 
at Kansas State College, Manhattan, Kansas. 

Dr. Margaret Burr DesChamps is assistant professor of 
history at Agnes Scott College, Decatur, Georgia. 

Dr. Christopher Crittenden is director of the State De- 
partment of Archives and History and secretary of the Liter- 
ary and Historical Association, Raleigh. 

Dr. Paul Murray is professor of history at East Carolina 
College, Greenville. 

Mr. Harry L. Golden is the editor of the Carolina Israelite, 

Mr. Robert Mason is editor of The Sanford Daily Herald, 

Dr. Leonard B. Hurley is professor of English at the Wo- 
man's College, University of North Carolina, Greensboro. 

Dr. Louis B. Wright is director of the Folger Shakespeare 
Library, Washington, D. C. 

Miss Mary L. Thornton is librarian, North Carolina Col- 
lection, University of North Carolina Library, Chapel Hill. 


The North Carolina 
Historical Review 

Volume XXXII July, 1955 Number 3 


By Houston G. Jones 

Part I: The Senator 

The name Bedford Brown means little to a present-day 
North Carolinian. Reference to his name in a historical journ- 
al would necessitate a footnote to remind the reader that 
Brown once represented the state in the United States Senate. 
An interested person could, if he wished, go to the standard bi- 
ographical histories and find a brief sketch listing the various 
offices held by this almost forgotten man. But by none of those 
sources would the reader be led to realize that a century ago 
Bedford Brown was one of the best known leaders of the 
Democratic Party in the South. 

In June, 1860, Martin Van Buren wrote a friend, "I at least 
would think the country fortunate to get such a man [as 
Bedford Brown] for the office of President or Vice-Presi- 
dent." 2 This was not the only time that the former President 
had paid high tribute to "an old and constant friend of Genl. 
Jackson and my own, one on whom as much as any other 
man, we relied for support of our respective administrations 
in the Senate of the U. States." But coming as it did immedi- 
ately after the abortive Charleston Convention, the compli- 
ment must have been sweet to the ears of the North Caro- 
linian who had fought the battles of Jacksonianism against 
the giants of that day and who, in 1860, was fighting the 

1 This article was being prepared under the supervision of Professor 
Charles S. Sydnor at the time of the tragic death of that beloved gentleman. 
Any merit that the article may have is to be attributed to his kind, patient, 
and inspiring interest. I am also indebted to Professor Fletcher M. Green 
for his many suggestions for the final draft. 

2 Martin Van Buren to Theodore Miller, June 11, 1860. Bedford Brown 
Papers, Duke University. 


322 The North Carolina Historical Review 

greatest battle of his life in attempting to stem the tide of 

Bedford Brown, 3 the state rights Unionist of ante-bellum 
days, had lived sixty-five eventful years when his intimate 
friend paid him the compliment quoted above. He had dis- 
tinguished himself as one of the leaders of the Democratic 
party and as a personal friend of Andrew Jackson, Martin 
Van Buren, Franklin Pierce, and James Buchanan. During 
his career he was elected to twelve terms in the General 
Assembly (one year as speaker of the State Senate), was 
twice elected to the United States Senate, was a strong though 
unsuccessful candidate for Congress, was vice-president for 
the North Carolina delegation at three national Democratic 
conventions, was elected to two state constitutional conven- 
tions, and was twice commissioned to represent his state in 
conferences with President Johnson in the days before the 
ascendancy of the Radicals. 

Throughout his many years of political life, Brown made 
no unique contribution to the field of political thought or to 
the formulation of governmental policy, but one character- 
istic stood out above all else and marked him as a political 
leader who neither asked nor gave quarter. That charac- 
teristic was an unflinching loyalty to what he conceived to 
be the principles of republicanism as laid down by the early 
Jeffersonians. "State rights," to Brown, was no hollow phrase 

"The only available intimate description of Brown by a contemporary is 
that of David Schenck. Judge Schenck, who was a fellow delegate to the 
convention, described Brown as a "spare-made man about six feet tall and 
wore no beard; his dress was neat, his step firm and his carriage erect. . . . 
His dignity was so studied that it was a little pompous, and his deep, husky 
voice did not seem quite natural. His under jaw protruded slightly and his 
teeth clenching gave him a very resolute appearance, and when aroused his 
countenance was fierce and defiant." Brown lacked the graces which persuade 
or win the confidence of others, Judge Schenck continued, "but he was 
forcible in logic, earnest in speech and empathic [sic] in manner. Those who 
reflected, and appreciated sound reason listened to him with patience and 
attention and he exerted a very strong influence. ..." Furthermore, "I 
have often seen him surrounded by distinguished men, and he was the 
politest among them all, and his manners the most courtly." He was a sincere 
man, self-confident, fearless and frank, and "loyal to his convictions and 
using no art to enforce his views and disdaining dissimulation or sophistry." 
Judge Schenck concluded, "There is not spot nor blemish on his political 
character; there was no doubt as to his loyalty and patriotism. He lived 
and acted as a true man and left a pleasant remembrance in the hearts 
of those who knew him." David Schenck, Personal Sketches of Distinguished 
Delegates of the State Convention 1861-2 (Greensboro, 1885), 19-21. 

Bedford Brown 

Bedford Brown : State Rights Unionist 323 

but rather the basic ingredient in the union of states as en- 
visioned in the Jeffersonian tradition. As a state rights advo- 
cate, the nation had no legislator more outspoken than Bed- 
ford Brown. But neither did it have a more ardent Unionist. 
In the United States Senate during the critical months of 
the nullification controversy, Brown stood up for his principle 
of states within the Union and at the same time rejected 
nullification as nothing less than disunion. It was this strange 
blend of two apparent opposites that gave the Senator from 
North Carolina the chance to play the part of a referee be- 
tween the leaders of sectional controversy during the hectic 
days of Jackson and Van Buren. 

Brown, although an ardent Unionist, attacked the nation- 
alistic policies propounded by Webster and Clay as uncon- 
stitutional and divisive. A loyal Southerner, he nevertheless, 
vehemently attacked the increasingly virulent attitude of 
Calhoun and Tyler as threatening to break up the most "glo- 
rious republic" ever formed. The middle way is not always 
popular in politics, and Bedford Brown's opposition to the 
tariff and the bank was no more designed to make him pop- 
ular in the North and West than his opposition to nullifica- 
tion and secession was to gain him friends in the South. But 
if a man's success may in a small way be measured by what 
the people at home thought of him, Bedford Brown must 
have died a contented man, for not once in his fifty-five years 
of political activity did the voters of his native Caswell Coun- 
ty fail to give him a majority at the polls. 

Bedford Brown was born June 6, 1795, 4 the third child in 
a family of eight, at the Brown homestead between the upper 
branches of Country Line 5 and Moon creeks in what is now 
Locust Hill Township, Caswell County, North Carolina. His 
father, Jethro Brown, had migrated to Caswell during the 

1 Brown Family Bible (published 1812), 678. Bedford Brown Papers, Rose 
Hill, Caswell County, N. C. There are two family Bibles, one published in 
1812, the other in 1823. 

I am indebted to Mr. J. W. Brown, great-grandson of Senator Bedford 
Brown and present owner of Rose Hill, for giving me access to the Senator's 
papers and library. I am also indebted to the late Miss Mary Wilson Brown, 
granddaughter of the Senator, who, as my fourth grade teacher, first in- 
terested me in her ancestor. 

5 Sometimes incorrectly cited on maps and highway markers as "County 

324 The North Carolina Historical Review 

Revolution with his father, John Edmunds Brown. Just before 
the war, the Browns had moved from Virginia to the Pee Dee 
country of South Carolina for the purpose of growing indigo. 
But when John Brown and his family gave aid to General 
Marion during the swamp campaigns, the Tories laid waste 
to their property and the family moved back north, settling 
in Caswell, near the Virginia border, because of the adapta- 
bility of the soil to tobacco. 6 

Brown's mother, the former Lucy Williamson, was a mem- 
ber of a pioneer Caswell family. Both the Browns and the 
Williamsons were of English stock, Bedford being named for 
the original Brown homestead in Bedfordshire. 

In 1813, young Brown was sent to the University of North 
Carolina where he studied for one year. 7 Two years later, 
only twenty years of age, he entered politics, being elected, 
along with Romulus M. Saunders, to the House of Commons. 8 
As befitted a twenty-year-old, Bedford took no great part in 
the deliberations of the House and was appointed to the rela- 
tively unimportant committee on military land warrants. On 
December 9, 1815, however, he created a considerable furor 
when he introduced a resolution, "Resolved, that the firm- 
ness, energy and wisdom which have characterized the poli- 
tical conduct of the president of the United States, during 
the late arduous contest of our country, and his prompt ac- 
ceptance and ratification of an honorable treaty, entitle him 
to the gratitude and thanks of this legislature." 9 The resolu- 
tion provoked long debate and only after five days was it 
finally adopted by a 76 to 51 vote in the House, 10 indicating, 
to some degree, President Madison's popularity in North 

On July 13, 1816, Brown married Mary Lumpkin Glenn, 11 
daughter of James Anderson Glenn, an influential merchant 

6 The National Cyclopaedia of American Biography . . . (New York, 1892- 
1951, 37 vols.), IX, 458. See also Bedford J. Brown [a nephew of the Sena- 
tor] to Miss Mary Brown, February 7, 1912. Bedford Brown Papers, Rose 

7 Kemp P. Battle, Sketches of the History of the University of North 
Carolina (Chapel Hill, 1889), 100. 

8 Journal of the House of Commons . . . 1815, 1. 

9 Journal of the House of Commons . . . 1815, 38. 

10 Journal of the House of Commons . . . 1815, 46. 

"Brown Family Bible (published 1823), 678. Bedford Brown Papers, 
Rose Hill. 

Bedford Brown : State Rights Unionist 325 

of Petersburg, Virginia, who had migrated from Scotland 
where his father, Archibald Glenn, was lord provost of Glas- 
gow. 12 The young couple was sent off on a wedding trip to 
England and Scotland by Jethro Brown who by 1816 was a 
moderately prosperous planter and tavern keeper. He was 
also a man of some learning as was attested by the fact that 
he maintained in his tavern the headquarters of a society 
"constituted for intellectual improvement." 13 Upon the 
couple's return to Caswell, Jethro made them a gift of his 
attractive home, Rose Hill, built in 1802, and a considerable 
tract of land. Rose Hill still stands as one of the finest ex- 
amples of early Caswell architecture and retains not only the 
spirit of the ante-bellum planter but also his library, some of 
his personal papers, and his grave. Here, at Brown's Store, 
or Locust Hill as the community became known in the 1840's, 
a small amount of North Carolina history has been safe- 
guarded for a century and half. 

Brown was again elected to the House of Commons in 
1816, and was re-elected for the following two terms. 14 In 
1818, Caswell sent Bartlett Yancey to the State Senate and 
Bedford Brown and Romulus M. Saunders to the Commons, 
a triumvirate characterized by a contemporary as "not excell- 
ed in the legislators of any county in the state." 15 Within a 
twelve-year period, this trio was elected to the speakerships 
of the House and Senate for a total of fourteen terms. 

12 The National Cyclopaedia of American Biography, V, 442. 

"Bartlett Yancey, "Caswell County," Thomas Henderson Letter Book 
1810-1811 (a bound volume of manuscripts in N. C. Department of Archives 
and History). See also A. R. Newsome, "Twelve North Carolina Counties, 
1810-1811," North Carolina Historical Review, V, 4 (October, 1928) , 413-446. 

14 Because of the meagerness of information contained in the journals of 
ante-bellum assemblies, the part played by individual representatives is 
seldom easy to ascertain, but sometimes committee assignments give an 
intimation of their standing. Brown in 1816 served on the committee on 
propositions and grievances and in the following session was on the com- 
mittee on finance and a committee which held elections for councillors of 
state. See Journal of the House of Commons . . . 1816, 3, and Journal of the 
House of Commons . . . 1817,11, 48. His committee assignment is not listed 
in the Journal for 1818, and his colleague, Saunders, who was to be elected 
speaker of the House the following year, appears to have outshone Brown 
in the session of 1818. It is significant to note that Bartlett Yancey was 
elected speaker of the Senate in 1817 and held that office until his death in 

16 John H. Wheeler, Reminiscences and Memoirs of North Carolina and 
Eminent North Carolinians (Columbus, Ohio, 1884), 109. 

326 The North Carolina Historical Review 

By 1823, Bedford Brown had become a prosperous young 
planter and held lands in both his native community and 
Halifax County, Virginia, 16 the latter possibly accruing from 
inheritance by his wife. That year, Brown was again elected 
to the House of Commons where he served as chairman of 
the committee on rules and order and was a member of the 
committee on education. 17 In this General Assembly, Brown 
injected himself into a national political controversy by 
strongly opposing the adoption of the Fisher Resolutions. The 
resolutions, introduced by Charles Fisher, Calhoun's North 
Carolina leader, proposed that the United States Senators from 
the state be instructed and Representatives be requested to 
prevent a caucus nomination for President of the United States 
and to work for an amendment to establish a uniform sys- 
tem of districts in the country for choosing presidential elec- 
tors. 18 Brown's speeches in opposition to the resolutions 
strongly defended the caucus system, and, although he 
claimed later that he was an "original Jackson man," included 
a defense of William H. Crawford who was expected to re- 
ceive the caucus nomination for president. 

From 1824 to 1828, Brown was content to oversee his 
growing plantations and, except for a stroke of fate in 1828, 
possibly would not again have entered public life. In that 
year, Bartlett Yancey, who had distinguished himself as a 
congressman and as speaker of the State Senate, was re- 
elected to the latter office from Caswell. Yancey was looked 
upon by many persons as the sure choice of the Assembly to 
succeed the retiring Nathaniel Macon in the United States 
Senate. But his death intervened and, on November 24, Bed- 
ford Brown was elected to fill the vacancy from Caswell. 
Three days later, Thomas Ruffin, a rising lawyer who was 
destined to become chief justice of the State Supreme Court, 

16 Bedford Brown to Philip Howerton, September 17, 1823. Philip Howerton 
Correspondence, Duke University. 

17 Journals of the Senate and House of Commons . . . 1823, 121, 126. 
"The debate was published in pamphlet form, Debate on Mr. Fisher's 

Resolutions Against Caucuses in the House of Commons of North Carolina 
in Dec. 1823 (Raleigh, 1824). See also A. R. Newsome, "Debate on the 
Fisher Resolution," North Carolina Historical Review, IV, 4 (October, 1927) , 
428-470; V, 1 (January, 1928), 65-96; V, 2 (April, 1928), 204-223; V, 3 
(July, 1928), 310-328. 

Bedford Brown : State Rights Unionist 327 

suggested to Brown that he become a candidate for United 
States Senator. "Should you agree for your name to be 
brought forward," he wrote, "I cannot doubt for a moment, 
the issue of the contest. . . ." 1!) Brown's name, however, was 
not pushed and Governor James Iredell was elected. 

After a lack-luster first session in the State Senate, Brown 
was re-elected in 1829, and, on the first day of the new term, 
was elected speaker of that body, defeating Louis D. Wil- 
son. 20 This victory was an encouragement to whatever am- 
bition Brown may have had, for the appointment of United 
States Senator John Branch to the office of Secretary of the 
Navy by President Jackson provided a new vacancy. Thomas 
RufBn's enthusiasm for the young man from Caswell, how- 
ever, appears not to have been universally shared, for when 
nominations for the vacancy were received on November 
20, Brown's name was not included. The names of Mont- 
ford Stokes, Samuel P. Carson, Archibald D. Murphey, 
William B. Meares, Charles Fisher, Judge John R. Donnell, 
and several others were placed in nomination, but no one re- 
ceived a majority of votes. Although, theoretically, there was 
only one "party" in North Carolina at the time, the partisans 
of Clay, Adams, Jackson, and Calhoun carried on a de- 
termined fight for their favorite candidates; and after seven 
days of balloting, the contest narrowed down to William B. 
Meares of New Hanover County (later of Sampson), who 
was a strong supporter of Henry Clay, and supporters of the 
other national leaders. The strategy of the anti-Clay forces 
was simply to defeat Meares, but they could agree on no 
single candidate. One by one the stronger candidates dropped 
out — Murphey, Carson, Stokes. On the fourteenth ballot, the 
vote was Meares 74, Donnell 59, and Fisher 48. 21 On De- 
cember 8, after almost three weeks of fruitless voting, Speak- 
er Bedford Brown's name was entered, apparently for the 
purpose of holding off a Meares victory until the anti-Clay fac- 
tions could come to some agreement. But, much to the sur- 

19 Thomas Ruffin to Bedford Brown, November 27, 1828. J. G. de R. Hamil- 
ton, editor, The Papers of Thomas Ruffin (Raleigh, 1920, 2 vols.), I, 460. 
Hereafter cited as Hamilton, The Papers of Thomas Ruffin. 

20 Journals of the Senate and House of Commons . . . 1829-30, 1. 

21 Western Carolinian (Salisbury, N. C.), December 15, 1829. 

328 The North Carolina Historical Review 

prise of his colleagues and probably to himself, Brown was 
elected on the first ballot in which his name was entered, get- 
ting 95 votes to 86 for Meares and 7 for other candidates. 22 

That Brown's name had been entered only as a stalking 
horse instead of as a winner may be indicated in a statement 
attributed to Alfred Stanley, who was said to have visited 
Brown following the election and "stated to him how pure- 
ly accidental was his election, and . . . [that] he was bound 
in honor to resign. . . ." 23 Another North Carolinian, Joseph 
B. Skinner, expressed his dissatisfaction to Judge Ruffin, ask- 
ing if Brown had "acquired intellectual merit since the days 
in which I knew him, so that the State is not dishonored, or 
has it resulted from party juggling?" 24 The Western Caro- 
linian, however, noted that Brown was "a gentleman of re- 
spectable talents, and will do justice to the high and respon- 
sible station he has been called to fill." 25 

Brown took his seat in the United States Senate on Decem- 
ber 28, 1829, 26 and was assigned to the relatively unimportant 
Joint Committee on Engrossed Bills. 27 He made no important 
speech during the session, but his votes gave indication of 
the direction that he would follow during the next eleven 
years as a United States Senator. Those eleven years were 
characterized by opposition to Henry Clay's "American Sys- 
tem" and support of all but one of the major administration 
measures. The exception was the force bill. At the same time, 
however, Brown just as strongly fought nullification. He op- 
posed most federal spending schemes, the distribution of 
the treasury surplus to the states, the recognition or annexa- 
tion of Texas, the rechartering of the United States Bank, and 

22 Journals of the Senate and House of Commons . . . 1829-30, 9-46. 

23 R. M. Saunders, An Address of R. M. Saunders to the People of North 
Carolina, February 25, 18 US, a pamphlet bound in North Carolina Politics, 
No. 1, North Carolina Room, University of North Carolina. An acceptable 
secondary account of the election may be found in "Bedford Brown," Samuel 
A. Ashe, Biographical History of North Carolina (Greensboro, 1905-1917, 
8 vols.), I, 183. 

24 Joseph B. Skinner to Thomas Ruffin, December 29, 1829. Hamilton, The 
Papers of Thomas Ruffin, I, 537. 

25 Western Carolinian (Salisbury, N. C), December 15, 1829. 

26 Biographical Directory of the American Congress 177U-19J+9 (Washing- 
ton, 1950), 160; Niles Weekly Register (Baltimore, Md.), XXXVII (January 
2, 1830), 291. 

27 Senate Document 8, Serial 192, 21st Congress, 1st Session. 

Bedford Brown : State Rights Unionist 329 

he disagreed with the majority of southern members over 
the best way of handling abolition petitions. By the time 
of his resignation in 1840, Bedford Brown had marked him- 
self as one of the most faithful friends of Jackson and Van 
Buren, and, along with Thomas Hart Benton of Missouri 
and William Rufus King of Alabama, both natives of North 
Carolina, had become a leading Democrat in the Senate. 

Brown's faith in General Jackson was confided to Judge 
Ruffin a week after he took office. "The popularity of the Ad- 
ministration is so well established," he wrote, "and the con- 
fidence generally entertained here, as to the honesty of Genl. 
Jackson's principles is so great that I am inclined to think 
the partizans Isicl of Mr. Clay will be somewhat discouraged 
from making anything like a systematic opposition." 28 This 
prediction did not come true, but the faith that the North 
Carolinian held in the two Presidents under whom he served 
never wavered, even in the dark days of the late 1830's when 
only a vanguard of original Jackson men stood in defense of 
the Van Buren program. 

During his first months in office, Senator Brown told Na- 
thaniel Macon, who, with Thomas Jefferson, was his idol, 
of his intention to oppose the Clay- Adams forces. Brown 
wrote the venerable retired Senator, 

The speedy payment of the national debt . . . should be an object 
of increasing solicitude, with all who wish to see the government 
brought back to its republican course, for so long as it remains 
unpaid, it will form a pretext for continuing the present high 
rates of duties ; thus annually exacting from Agricultural indus- 
try, a large sum of money, which a wise and provident govern- 
ment, should leave in the pockets of its Citizens. If this course 
is persevered in, and it should become the settled policy of Con- 
gress, which will annually bring into the Treasury a larger sum, 
than the ordinary expenditures of Government require [,] it 
cannot but be looked on with dismay and apprehension, by those 
who are friendly to preserving the limitations, which the f ramers 
of the constitution designed to impose on the federal government, 
but which have been almost entirely disregarded by a combina- 
tion of selfish politicians, who have succeeded in establishing, 
what they falsely denominate the "Americal System" ; by which 

28 Bedford Brown to Thomas Ruffin, January 6, 1830. Hamilton, The 
Papers of Thomas Ruffin, II, 2. 

330 The North Carolina Historical Review 

extortions are to be practiced on a portion of the people of the 
confederacy to be expended in distant States, in which those 
who contribute the largest amount of money, have no immediate 
interest — , a system more false to the prosperity of the Southern 
portion of America, better calculated to annihilate the Sover- 
eignty of the States, and destroy the peace and harmony of the 
Union, would not, in my opinion, have been devised. . . . 29 

In the second session of the Twenty-first Congress, Brown 
received assignment to two committees— agriculture and 
claims. 80 Except for what influence he may have exerted in 
those committees, his part in the session was largely restricted 
to his votes on the issues. In his first major speech in the Sen- 
ate, Brown, in February, 1831, defended the Jackson admin- 
istration against charges by Senator John Tyler of Virginia 
that the President had exceeded his constitutional powers in 
appointing a commission to draw up a commercial treaty with 
the Turkish government. In Brown's opinion, the course of 
the President had not only been honest, but "marked by an 
enlightened policy, deserving the approbation of the Ameri- 
can people." Unlike the former administration, the behavior 
of the Jackson government had been such as to assure that 
the "reserved rights of the States of this confederacy [will] 
be respected . . . and the action of the General Government 
restrained within its appropriate sphere." 81 

Senator Brown was again assigned to the committees on 
agriculture and claims in the first session of the Twenty-sec- 
ond Congress in December, 1831. Brown, now thirty-six 
years of age, frequently entered into discussions on the floor. 
His first great battle began in January when the forces of 
Clay and Webster opened their fight against the confirmation 
of Martin Van Buren as minister to the United Kingdom. 
Vice-President John C. Calhoun presided and took delight 
in every defamation of the Secretary of State. 

Brown characterized the New Yorker as having "accomp- 
lished more in less time than any of his predecessors. . . . 

"Bedford Brown to Nathaniel Macon, April 29, 1830. Nathaniel Macon 
Papers, Duke University. 

30 Senate Document 15, Serial 203, 21st Congress, 2nd Session. 

81 Register of Debates in Congress, 21st Congress, 2nd Session, 274. Here- 
after cited as Register of Debates. 

Bedford Brown : State Rights Unionist 331 

Possessing talents of a high order and rapidly growing in 
the esteem of his countrymen. . . ." 32 He charged that the 
opposition to Van Buren stemmed from his success in nego- 
tiating a West Indian trade agreement with Great Britain, an 
accomplishment for which the Adams administration had 
worked in vain. The debates continued for many days until, 
late in the month, the Senate cast a 23 to 23 vote on the ques- 
tion of confirmation. It was up to the Vice-President to break 
the tie. Calhoun cast his vote against the New Yorker, but 
in doing so, he helped make Van Buren the choice of Presi- 
dent Jackson for the vice-presidency. At the same time, the 
South Carolinian virtually ended his own chances of ever 
sitting in the White House. 

The introduction of the Tariff bill of 1832 was a signal for 
another North-South battle in Congress. Brown expressed 
his dissatisfaction with the bill because it re-enacted some of 
the "most obnoxious features of the tariff of 1828." He had 
hoped, he said, that the new bill would remedy the worst 
features of the Tariff of Abominations. But that hope had not 
been borne out. He was hostile to the principle of protection, 
and while in the Senate he would contribute his humble ef- 
forts to "eradicate from our laws a principle . . . incompatible 
with the enlightened spirit of the age, and of free Govern- 
ment." 33 Nevertheless, the Senator admitted, considering the 
nature of the Union, he would sacrifice much for the sake of 
conciliation, and, in spite of his constitutional scruples, he 
was willing to meet on a half-way ground, "believing that 
our federal system of Government can only continue to exist 
by the exercise of that spirit of compromise and conciliation 
which gave it birth." 34 He said that compromise was a two- 
way proposition, and the proposed reductions were insufficient 
to warrant the support of the bill by a suffering South. The 
bill under debate presented, he said, the "extraordinary spec- 
tacle ... in our country of continuing a system of unjust and 
oppressive taxation, not called for by the exigencies of the 
nation, but to benefit a few monopolists." He hoped that the 

32 Register of Debates, 21st Congress, 2nd Session, 1335. 

83 Register of Debates, 21st Congress, 2nd Session, 1218. 

84 Register of Debates, 21st Congress, 2nd Session, 675. 

332 The North Carolina Historical Review 

"justice, intelligence, and patriotism of the people [would] 
correct this evil, and save the Union from the disastrous con- 
sequences which [are] likely to result from perservering in 
such a system." 35 

On the issue of rechartering the United States Bank, Brown 
had little to say. He noted that "in proportion as the bank 
[is] burdened, [will] the bank burden the people," and 
voted for various amendments designed to restrict operations 
of the bank. His opposition was clearly indicated by his votes 
on the amendments, against final passage, and in voting to 
sustain the President's veto. 36 

In November, 1832, South Carolina announced her inten- 
tion of treating the Tariffs of 1828 and 1832 as null and void 
after February 1. President Jackson replied to this threat by 
asking Congress for authorization to use force to execute the 
laws of the United States in South Carolina. The Senate 
thus took up what is commonly referred to as the "force bill." 

Here was a test that would separate the state rights advo- 
cate from the Unionist. Bedford Brown now was faced with 
an important decision. Would the man who would "yield 
to none in a high and profound reverence for the Union of 
the States" forsake his President whom he had invariably de- 
fended, or his neighbors in South Carolina? On January 28, 
1833, the North Carolinian gave his answer. 

South Carolina, Brown told the Senate, had made a griev- 
ous error. Her course, he thought, had been "rash and un- 
called for by the exigency of the times. She should have re- 
lied . . . upon a constitutional remedy; upon the returning 
sense of justice in the people of the Northern and Eastern 
states; and upon the wisdom and patriotism assembled in the 
legislative halls of the country." 37 He expressed complete dis- 
approbation of her course. 

Having defined his view toward South Carolina's actions, 
Brown then turned to the difficult course of reconciling that 
position with his opposition to the force bill. He would not 
support the President's request. He believed that, in its con- 

35 Register of Debates, 21st Congress, 2nd Session, 1219. 
se Register of Debates, 22nd Congress, 1st Session, 1123. 
87 Register of Debates, 22nd Congress, 2nd Session, 333. 

Bedford Brown : State Rights Unionist 333 

sequences, it would be "attended with violence, and perhaps 
lead to civil war." No emergency, he believed, justified the 
subordination of the civil authority to the military, and that 
would be the consequence of the passage of such an act. 
There was an "inherent energy in the constitution which will 
enable the laws to triumph without an appeal to force/' The 
difficulties between South Carolina and the Union could be 
resolved if both sides would take a position of reasonable 

When the Webster-Clay forces suggested that some oppo- 
nents of the force bill were reluctant because they feared to 
put the proposed powers into the hands of the "present 
President," Brown countered with a glowing tribute to Jack- 
son. He said, 

. . . the past course of the President [has] been such as to entitle 
him to unlimited confidence, and there [is] no individual to 
whom [I] would more willingly confide this power . . . But 
there [is] no man, however elevated his station and enobled by 
virtue, however pure his integrity and honest his purposes, to 
whom [I] would give a power which [is] unwarranted by the 
constitution. ... [I] could not believe for a moment, that, if 
this power were given to the President, he would abuse it. But 
it might, in worse times than these, and in worse hands than 
his, be abused to the destruction of our institutions. . . . [History 
teaches] the fact of today becomes a precedent of tomorrow. 38 

The solution to the problem was simple, Brown said. Take 
away the causes of the problem, and the problem itself would 
disappear. And what were the causes? The North Carolinian 
gave his own answer: 

I take my stand ... on the reserved rights of the States. I re- 
pudiate the doctrine of nullification. I repudiate also the high- 
toned doctrine of the federal party. I believe it is to that high- 
toned doctrine that we are to attribute nullification. I believe 
that doctrine produced it ; is the parent of it. It is by an improper 
pressure of the Federal Government on the rights of the States, 
and by exercising doubtful powers, that the State of South Car- 
olina has been thrown into this position. 39 

Register of Debates, 22nd Congress, 2nd Session, 334. 

334 The North Carolina Historical Review 

Furthermore, Brown charged that internal improvements at 
federal expense and the protective tariff violated the Consti- 
tution and state rights. Those innovations were solely for 
the enrichment of one section at the expense of another, he 
said. South Carolina had a legitimate complaint, one in which 
the entire South shared, and only by removing the complaint 
would the problem be removed. The remedy then, was one 
of conciliation, one aspect of which would be the removal 
of the oppression under which the Southern people were 
laboring as a result of the tariff. He appealed to the national 
patriotism of all sections: 

Thank God, in the exercise of my legislative rights and duties 
here, I can look beyond the Potomac. Thank God, I have a feel- 
ing which is not confined to the geographical limits of any por- 
tion of the United States. I can look to the judge of my country- 
men north as well as south of the Potomac; and I wish it to be 
distinctly understood, that what I now say respecting South 
Carolina, I deem applicable to every member of this confederacy. 
To no one of these States would I arrogantly say, I will not do 
justice, until you come on your knees before me. ... I do hope, 
if I have any patriotism, it is not that narrow, contracted patriot- 
ism which is confined to geographical limits. I trust it is that 
patriotism which looks abroad over the Union, and embraces 
every portion of my fellow-citizens. And so help me God, if my 
constituents were this day to demand that I should perpetrate 
an act of injustice against any member of this confederacy . . . 
which I believed destructive to their constitutional rights, so 
help me God I would resign my seat, and retire to my home, 
rather than jeopardize the peace of this republic, this glorious ex- 
periment of a free Government, by taking what justly belongs 
to Maine, and unjustly to bestow it on North Carolina. . . . 40 

All peaceful means, Brown repeated, should be used to set- 
tle the problem. Then, if "on a failure of all these means, it 
shall be found necessary to use force to execute the laws, let 
it be used." He was not prepared to say that the emergency 
could not arise, but before a law of such importance should 
be executed, before the peace of the Union should be dis- 
turbed, "there ought to be a reference to the justice, to the 

39 Register of Debates, 22nd Congress, 2nd Session, 338. 

40 Register of Debates, 22nd Congress, 2nd Session, 342. 

Bedford Brown : State Rights Unionist 335 

wisdom of Congress, to weigh, to examine the provisions of 
that law, and solemnly to pause and reflect upon proceeding 
to put it in force by military power/' 41 

Senator Brown closed his long appeal with a plea that the 
flag which theretofore had been the "rallying point of hero- 
ism," should not "now float over the mangled corpses of our 
bleeding countrymen. God forbid that our country should 
under go this sad and disastrous revolution; for . . . whenever 
that should take place, not only the liberties of this country, 
but the best and brightest hope of the civilized world, [will] 
be destroyed forever." 42 

But Brown s opposition to the force bill was unavailing, and 
the act went into effect on March 1. Fortunately, however, 
South Carolina, finding little support for her action, accepted 
the compromise Tariff of 1833. Thus, nullification gave way 
to the conciliation for which North Carolina's Bedford Brown 
had argued. 

That Bedford Brown's influence had risen to command high 
respect in the Senate by the time of the opening of the 
Twenty-third Congress in December, 1833, is indicated in 
his election by that body to the chairmanship of the Com- 
mittee on Agriculture by a vote of 43 to 3. 43 

President Jackson's withdrawal of federal deposits from 
the United States Bank provided the major issue in the new 
session. This act was the signal for a full-scale political war 
between the administration and the bank forces, the latter 
led by Clay and Webster. In that battle, Bedford Brown 
openly broke with his colleague from North Carolina, Sena- 
tor Willie P. Mangum, and uncompromisingly sided with 
the President. 

Following the President's withdrawal of deposits, Congress 
was flooded with petitions claiming financial distress from 
throughout the country. Senator Brown charged that these 
petitions were inspired by the "Federal Party" which was 
attempting to arouse the public into believing that a real 

41 Register of Debates, 22nd Congress, 2nd Session, 343. 

42 Register of Debates, 22nd Congress, 2nd Session, 345. 

43 At that time, the committees were elected by the whole membership of 
the Senate. Brown also received eleven votes for the chairmanship of the 
Committee on Claims. Register of Debates, 23rd Congress, 1st Session, 42. 

336 The North Carolina Historical Review 

crisis had developed as a result of the President's action. This 
campaign to spread the belief that there was real financial 
distress was designed, he said, to bring pressure upon Con- 
gress to recharter the "monster" bank. Actually, conditions 
were good, said the North Carolinian, citing real property 
prices as 20 per cent higher than the previous year. Tobacco 
was selling well and industry was better recompensed than 
at any time within his knowledge, he argued. 44 

The bank, the Senator charged, had set out deliberately 
to produce distress and embarrassment in the country. And, 
while the bank put the screws down upon the people by cur- 
tailing its discounts and its accommodations, "politicians, 
men in high places, newspapers, the whole squadron of paid 
agents and organs," were spreading alarm by claiming that 
the country was being plunged into ruin by the removal. 
Brown said that he was opposed, on general principles, to 
the banking system in any form, because he believed it to 
be at variance with the spirit and character of American in- 
stitutions, and he was much more opposed to a national bank 
which had shown itself powerful enough "to wield an almost 
irresistible influence over the affairs of the country, for good 
or evil purposes, as it might choose." 45 

Brown spoke often and long in support of the administra- 
tion's actions. In general, he took the line of argument that 
the administration had complete authority to withdraw the 
deposits, and, indeed, should be commended for doing it; 
that the bank had set out to force its recharter by bringing 
about financial distress; that the friends of the bank were en- 
deavoring to stir up a panicky mood among the people in 
hopes of winning them over to the bank side; that the dis- 
tress was largely imaginary, the country being basically 
prosperous; that any institution which possessed such power 
as the United States Bank had enjoyed was unconstitutional; 
that the bank had no claim to the deposits in the first place; 
that the "bank party" was a direct outgrowth of the old Fed- 
eralists who had opposed popular government and supported 
a "moneyed aristocracy"; and that the whole issue of dis- 

44 Register of Debates, 23rd Congress, 1st Session, 229. 

45 Register of Debates, 23rd Congress, 1st Session, 550. 

Bedford Brown : State Rights Unionist 337 

tress was a false one promulgated by friends of the bank. 
The entire issue, he charged, was "whether the pretensions 
set up by an arrogant moneyed aristocracy, and the political 
party supporting it, should prevail in the conflict; or whether 
the cause of the country, and the Chief Executive Magistrate, 
who is defending the citadel of our liberties against the most 
dangerous assaults, should be sustained." 46 

Administration forces in the Senate were in a minority on 
all major issues during the session of 1833-1834, and Brown 
found himself on the losing side on practically every vote. 
Only nineteen colleagues joined him in voting against a reso- 
lution condemning Jackson's removal of the deposits as un- 
constitutional. When he left for North Carolina in the sum- 
mer of 1834 to mend his political fences, Senator Brown 
must have breathed easier in a friendly atmosphere. 

Bedford Brown, United States Senator by accident, was 
a candidate for re-election in 1834. His support of Jackson 
had earned him the enmity of a growing number of North 
Carolinians who looked to Henry Clay for leadership. At 
the same time, his frequent clashes with Calhoun had turn- 
ed many nominal Democrats against him. But in his favor 
was the boomerang of the Whigs' attacks on the Caswellian 
as a man of "common manners, a man of the lower classes," 
a baseless charge. 47 

Following a smashing Democratic victory in the North Car- 
olina legislative elections in August, Vice-President Van 
Buren wrote Brown, 

. . . you would not but have been gratified to have witnessed the 
deep interest which has been taken here in the N. Carolina elec- 
tions on your account. It is with great sincerity that I say to you 
that the more I have reflected on your course last winter the 
more I have found to admire it. . . . Yourself, Forsyth, Benton 
and Wright have, I assure you, laid up a store of popularity 
which can not fail to turn to account hereafter. 48 

** Register of Debates, 23rd Congress, 1st Session, 1487. 

47 William E. Dodd, The Life on Nathaniel Macon (Raleigh, 1903), 395. 

48 Martin Van Buren to Bedford Brown, September 7, 1834. Bedford Brown 
Papers, Duke University. Professor W. K. Boyd incorrectly copied the 
date of this letter as "September 7, 1836" in his "Selections from the Cor- 
respondence of Bedford Brown — 1, 1832-1856," Trinity College Historical 
Papers, VI (1906), 75. 

338 The North Carolina Historical Review 

On November 20, the General Assembly formally elected 
Brown for a six-year term by a margin of some thirty votes 
over Thomas Settle of Rockingham County. 49 Soon there- 
after, the Assembly displayed its pro-Jacksonian fervor by 
instructing Senators Brown and Mangum to vote for expung- 
ing the resolutions adopted in the Senate condemning the 
President's withdrawal of deposits from the bank. Mangum, 
now a confirmed Whig, refused to recognize the right of a 
legislature to instruct senators, and, in 1836, resigned in an 
unsuccessful attempt to vindicate his position. 50 

Senator Brown was again elected chairman of the Agri- 
culture Committee in December, 1835, but his margin of 
victory over Senator Tipton of Indiana was only 25 to 14. The 
North Carolinian was also elected to the committees on 
claims, Indian affairs, and contingent expenses of the Sen- 
ate. 51 

Soon after the new session began, an issue arose which 
was destined to destroy the effectiveness of the Democratic 
Party for many years. The slave-owner of the Upper Country 
Line was faced with another perplexing decision when the 
issue of abolitionist petitions developed. But, just as he had 
done on the force bill, the North Carolinian took a middle 
ground and fought the extremes on both sides. It was against 
his fellow southerners, however, that he aimed his heaviest 

The basic argument in the Senate centered not around 
support of the abolitionists, but around the procedure for 
handling the many petitions received from those persons ad- 
vocating interference with the institution of slavery. John C. 
Calhoun argued that the Senate should refuse to receive the 
petitions. This procedure, however, could involve debate. 
Brown reasoned that the petitions should be received by the 
Senate after which a motion would be made to lay them on 
the table. Since parliamentary procedure prohibited debate 

49 Journals of the Senate and House of Commons . . . 183U-S5, 10. 

50 Henry Thomas Shanks, ed., The Payers of Willie Person Mangum (Ra- 
leigh, 1950, 4 vols.), I, xxxi-xxxiii. See also Earl R. Franklin, "The Instruc- 
tion of United States Senators by North Carolina," Trinity College Histori- 
cal Papers, VII (1907), 1-15. 

51 Register of Debates, 24th Congress, 1st Session, 11. 

Bedford Brown : State Rights Unionist 339 

on a motion to table, the whole issue could thus be thrust 
aside without any discussion on the part of the Senate. This 
course, said Brown, while indicating to the "fanatics that 
Congress will yield no countenance to their designs, at the 
same time marks them with decided reprobation by a refusal 
to print" their petitions. The preclusion of all debate "would 
thus prevent the agitation of a subject in Congress which all 
should deprecate as fraught with mischief to every portion 
of this happy and flourishing confederacy/' 52 

Brown's stand was not acceptable to the southern extre- 
mists. Senators Calhoun and Preston of South Carolina and 
Tyler and Leigh of Virginia especially argued that a refusal to 
accept the petitions was the only honorable way to handle 
them. They complained bitterly that the abolitionists were 
permitted to operate legally in several northern states and 
warned that the strength of their organizations was increas- 
ingly dangerous. 

His southern colleagues were making exaggerated repre- 
sentations of the danger of the abolitionists, Senator Brown 
charged. The "fanatics," he claimed, were countenanced by 
no respectable portion of the North, and, without debate in 
Congress, the abolitionists would have no opportunity to agi- 
tate the issue. This was no time for sectional differences; it 
was a time for renewed faith in the generosity of all Ameri- 
cans. To the extent that they were continuing the debates on 
the abolitionists, Brown said, the southerners were giving 
wide circulation to the abolitionist literature. Debates of Con- 
gress were reported by the newspapers which carried the 
words of the abolitionists to the people who otherwise would 
not hear them. Thus, when Congress debated the petitions, 
it was giving free publicity to the anti-slavery forces. 

When Senator Preston indignantly charged that the legis- 
latures of the northern states shall legislate against the aboli- 
tionists, Brown again interposed his caution against driving 
northern friends into the arms of the very group that the South 

52 Register of Debates, 24th Congress, 1st Session, 90. Senator Brown's part 
in this controversy is discussed in Thomas Hart Benton, Thirty Years' View ; 
or a History of the Working of the American Government for Thirty Years 
from 1820 to 1850 (New York, 1856, 2 vols.), 612-613. Hereafter cited as 
Benton, Thirty Years' View. 

340 The North Carolina Historical Review 

was criticizing. The North Carolinian suggested that it was 
the part of "wisdom as well as of generosity for us to cultivate 
harmonious feelings with those who [are] acting in concert 
with us to the North, to put the abolitionists down" by depriv- 
ing them of respectability. Only by maintaining the support 
of the Democratic leaders of the North, he believed, could the 
abolitionists be silenced. He suggested that the abolitionist 
activity was partially due to "the designs of a more sagacious 
political party, for the purpose of operating on the South at 
an important crisis," inferring that the Whigs had showered 
abolitionist publications upon the South just before the past 
elections. 53 

Senator Brown was frankly antagonistic toward the recog- 
nition of Texas when that issue was presented to the Twenty- 
fourth Congress. "What [have] these Texans done to require 
that we should embroil ourselves in a war with a country with 
whom we are on terms of peace?" he asked, and warned that 
recognition would likely lead to hostilities with Mexico. And, 
when on May 23, 1836, Senator Calhoun urged both recogni- 
tion and annexation, Brown objected to any course that would 
change "the neutral and pacific character of our Government, 
which [has] long been cherished as one of the wisest and 
best settled principles of policy. . . ." The national character 
of the United States, he said, was "worth infinitely more than 
all the territorial possessions of Mexico, her wealth, or the 
wealth of all other nations added together." 54 

By virtue of a one-vote Democratic majority in the General 
Assembly of North Carolina following the 1836 elections, 
Robert Strange was elected to replace Senator Willie P. Man- 
gum who had resigned after refusing to accept legislative 
instructions. The two Democrats worked as loyal supporters 
of the administration during the next four years, and Strange 
generally followed Brown's lead in the Senate debates. Fur- 
thermore, the Democrats now had a clear majority in the 
session beginning in December, 1836, as was evidenced by 

53 Register of Debates, 24th Congress, 1st Session, 1118. 

54 Register of Debates, 24th Congress, 1st Session, 1533. See also Benton, 
Thirty Years' View, I, 667-668. 

Bedford Brown : State Rights Unionist 341 

the expunging of the anti-Jackson resolution of March, 1834, 
by a vote of 24 to 19. 55 

Early in 1837, Senator Brown had another occasion to 
differ with the majority of his fellow southerners when he 
supported the admission of Michigan as a state. As he was 
increasingly prone to do, Brown maneuvered his speech sup- 
porting the bill into an attack on the Whigs, to whom he most 
frequently referred as the "Federal Party." That party, he 

. . . believed, or affected to believe, that popular liberty would 
degenerate into licentiousness, and prove incompatible with the 
existence of regular government. . . . Sir, ... to those who are 
in the habit of speaking disparingly of the intelligence of the 
great body of the people, it is sufficient to point them to the 
condition of the country to disprove the change. It is to that 
public intelligence that we are indebted for what it is. 56 

A violent exchange between Brown and Calhoun came in 
debate on a proposed reduction of the tariff in February, 
1837. Calhoun opposed the bill on the grounds that, although 
the Tariff of 1833 was "odious and unequal," he did not want 
to disturb the peace that the compromise had brought. This 
spectacle of the South Carolina Nullificationist working side 
by side with the "Federals" like Clay and Webster to prevent 
a reduction in duties was, to Senator Brown, among "the most 
extraordinary spectacles" that he had witnessed. He argued 
that to oppose a reduction was, in effect, to support the tariff. 
He censured Calhoun for making an "uncalled for and un- 
warrantable denunciation" of Jacksonian followers in the 
North who had come forward proposing reduction, and ac- 
cused the South Carolinian of "subterfuge" and "contemptible 
vanity and overweening egotism" and of thinking himself a 
standard of political infallibility. He would not, snapped 
Brown, thereafter "notice the hallucinations and frantic 
denunciations of all the friends of the administration who 

65 Register of Debates, 24th Congress, 2nd Session, 504. Brown relinquished 
his seat as chairman of the Agriculture Committee and was made chairman 
of the Committee on Revolutionary Claims. He was also chosen to serve on 
the committees on Commerce, and Post Office and Post Roads. 

58 Register of Debates, 24th Congress, 2nd Session, 280. 

342 The North Carolina Historical Review 

might not happen to agree with him [Calhoun] in his opin- 
ion. oT 

The Panic of 1837 failed to shake the Senator's faith in the 
Jackson and Van Buren administrations. He supported the 
sub-treasury bill and sided with Calhoun in favor of an 
amendment designed gradually to require the payment of 
all government revenues in specie. 58 He had ample opportu- 
nities to reiterate his convictions that all banks were evil and 
that the founding fathers had never intended for the paper 
currency system to be put into effect. He again charged that 
the "bank party" had succeeded in bringing on national finan- 
cial distress so that the country would be "scourged into 
submission, to compel its obedience to the mandates of the 
moneyed power." 59 

On February 23, 1838, Senator Brown delivered a speech 
which ran for more than twenty-five columns in the Congres- 
sional Globe. The issue was the independent sub-treasury 
plan which the North Carolinian supported as a means of 
getting the government completely divorced from the 
"moneyed aristocracy." Again he charged that the bank sup- 
porters were to blame for the depression: 

The present embarrassment of the Government [is] due to a 
great moneyed power, acting in concert with a certain political 
party, whose only hope to success [rests] in destroying the 
credit of the Government, and drying up the resources and com- 
merce of the country. ... It [is] one of a series of actions, put 
into operation for several years past, to arrest the financial oper- 
ations of the Government, for the purpose of forcing the people 
into the measures of a banking corporation. It [was] shame- 
lessly avowed by its organ, that it was in vain to reason with 
the people, and that they never would be brought to their senses 
until they were brought to them by severe distress. . . . the 
great object of that power has been, and is, to produce that dis- 
tress, for the purpose of bringing the people, as they say, to 
their senses ; or, in other words, to bring them bound hand and 
foot to its footstool. 60 

57 Register of Debates, 24th Congress, 2nd Session, 916. 

58 Register of Debates, 25th Congress, 1st Session, 406, 

59 Congressional Globe, 25th Congress, 2nd Session (Appendix), 35. 
80 Congressional Globe, 25th Congress, 2nd Session (Appendix), 388. 

Bedford Brown : State Rights Unionist 343 

The Senator's stand was applauded by the noted author, 
James Fenimore Cooper, who wrote Brown that the "present 
political struggle in this country, appears to be a contest be- 
tween men and dollars, and it is a bad omen for the first that 
they are so easily duped by the arch enemy; to their own 

• • " 61 


On January 14, 1839, Senator Brown laid before the Sen- 
ate a number of resolutions which the North Carolina Gen- 
eral Assembly had passed the previous month. These reso- 
lutions, usually referred to as the Kenneth Rayner Resolu- 
tions, condemned the expunging of the anti-Jackson reso- 
lutions from the Senate Journal, opposed the sub-treasury 
plan, blamed the administration for the depression, con- 
demned pre-emption, and resolved that the North Carolina 
Senators in Washington should carry out the wishes of the 
people in these regards. The resolutions contained no instruc- 

The significance of the controversy which arose between 
Senators Brown and Strange on the one hand and the Whig 
General Assembly of North Carolina on the other, lay in the 
disagreement between the two parties over the right of a 
legislature to instruct its federal senators. The Democrats 
supported the right of instruction; the Whigs refused to recog- 
nize it. Senator Mangum had resigned in 1836 over the issue. 

Upon presentation of the resolutions, Brown and Strange 
addressed the Senate, supporting the right of instruction as a 
basic principle of Jeffersonian Republicanism. But these reso- 
lutions, they said, did not instruct. In fact, the legislature 
had had before it an amendment specifically to instruct, but 
the Whigs voted against it unanimously, thus rejecting the 
Democratic doctrine that the General Assembly had the 
power to force either support of specific measures by its 
senators or the resignation of those officers. 62 

The two North Carolinians, faced with a charge of party 
servility, determined on a bold course. They announced that 
they would resign prior to the elections of 1840. Through 

81 James Fenimore Cooper to Bedford Brown, March 24, 1838. Bedford 
Brown Papers, Duke University. 

62 Congressional Globe, 25th Congress, 3rd Session, 117. 

344 The North Carolina Historical Review 

their choice of Assemblymen, the people would be able to 
signify their decision between the records of the two parties 
and between the conflicting attitudes toward legislative in- 
struction of senators. The senators, however, in view of the 
Whig legislature's rejection of the right of instruction, would 
not give their opponents the pleasure of filling their seats 
until after the people had expressed their decision. 

Henry Clay, who had long objected to the right of instruc- 
tion, arose to express belief that Brown and Strange, having 
lost the confidence of their legislature, should nevertheless 
resign immediately. That was a signal for Bedford Brown to 
get in one of his parting shots at 

... a senator whose miscalled American system, until thrown 
off by determined resistance, [has], for a series of years, im- 
poverished and desolated the South, oppressed her citizens, and 
almost ruined her commerce . . . and which [has] created and 
. . . established those dangerous sectional prejudices and feel- 
ings which [are] destined to endure too long for the harmony 
and safety of our country. 63 

Senator Brown's last recorded speech in Congress was 
made on May 7, 1840, when he defended his record of up- 
holding the policies of the Jackson and Van Buren admin- 
istrations. His eleven years in the Senate, he said, had been 
an uninterrupted battle against the "'federal" doctrines of the 
opposition who had attempted to set section against section. 
He said he had fought every important federal spending 
scheme and had been constantly on the lookout for extrava- 
gance. He had also stood against those extremists of his own 
South who had shown ill-will toward the "respectable" por- 
tion of the northern states in the abolitionist petition con- 
troversy. Now, he was ready to leave his fate up to the 
people of North Carolina who would commend or condemn 
his stand*. 

He was interrupted by Senator Southard who suggested 
that Brown's position would be rebuked by the people. 
Brown replied, 

Congressional Globe, 25th Congress, 3rd Session, 120. 

Bedford Brown : State Rights Unionist 345 

Sir, should I meet with the misfortune of receiving such a re- 
buke, the gentleman, from practical experience, will know how 
to sympathize with me, for the gentleman, and the Administra- 
tion of which he was a member [Adams'] , [have] received such 
a rebuke from the popular fiat ... in the most unequivocal man- 
ner. That the gentleman and his friends should wish to be rein- 
stated in office, and that they should even, in defiance of proba- 
bilities, indulge in the most sanguine anticipations, [is] reason- 
able enough; but that the popular rebuke, such as he antici- 
pate [s will] be bestowed on the Democratic party, [is], to say 
the least of it, not very probable. The gentleman, in good time, 
[will] find himself greatly mistaken in his predictions. 64 

It was the Senator for North Carolina, however, who was 
mistaken in his predictions. 

[To be concluded] 

"Congressional Globe, 26th Congress, 1st Session (Appendix), 440. 



CAROLINA, 1877-1894 

By Frenise A. Logan 

Officials who are elected by popular vote usually reflect 
the sentiment and thinking of the citizens whose votes placed 
them in office. The members of the legislative body of North 
Carolina during the period under survey were no exception 
to this rule. Therefore, with respect to public school education 
for the Negro children of the state, it was to be expected 
that these officeholders would affirm the large general views 
of their communities which held that education was a "big 
stick" in the hands of the Negroes, that it tended to spoil 
them and thus ruined good field hands. 

Yet in 1876, immediately after the election results were 
official, the Democratic press of the state, along with the 
newly elected Democratic legislature and state party leaders, 
attempted to assure the apprehensive Negroes that the new 
regime would not be "hostile to their rights and interests." 
On November 8, 1876, the day following the sweeping Demo- 
cratic victory, the editor of the Greensboro Patriot, for ex- 
ample, wrote: 

The negro need not be alarmed. He will not lose a single right or 
privilege he has enjoyed. Instead of being reduced to slavery 
again he will be fully emancipated. . . . The day that Democracy 
takes charge of this government will be the brightest the negro 
ever saw. He need have no fears. His old friends will be his 
friends again, and his future will be better and brighter. 1 

Representative McGehee, a Democrat from Person Coun- 
ty, speaking for his party, promised the Negroes that the 
legislature would "seek to inspire all its citizens with an ab 
solute confidence in its justice, nay more, in its good will 
The newly elected Democratic governor, Zebulon B. Vance, 
in his message before the General Assembly in January 1877, 

1 Greensboro Patriot, November 8, 1876. 

2 Greensboro Patriot, January 10, 1877. 



Public School Education For Negroes 347 

urged the members to live up to their pledges and "make no 
discrimination in the matter of public education"; but to deal 
justly and equitably with all school children of the state 
"with a thorough North Carolina spirit." 3 

The record reveals that for the first three years following 
the 1876 Democratic victory, North Carolina made serious 
effort to equalize the schools of the two races. But by 1880 
the promises and pledges of 1876-77 were cast aside. On 
March 29 of that year the legislature authorized the establish- 
ment of graded schools in the town of Goldsboro by an act 
which declared that "the taxes raised from the property and 
polls of white persons shall be appropriated exclusively to 
a graded school for white persons, and the taxes raised from 
the property and polls of colored persons shall be appropri- 
ated exclusively to a graded school for colored persons." 4 
Charles L. Coon says that this was the first time a North Caro- 
lina law permitted the division of school taxes on a race 
basis. 5 However, this history-making law got no further than 
its passage through the General Assembly; for when the 
question was put to a popular vote in early May of 1880, 
the poor whites and "ignorant" Negroes of Goldsboro united 
to defeat it. 6 

Refusing to accept this setback, the "good white people" 
of Goldsboro were successful on March 5, 1881, in obtaining 
from the legislature permission to hold another election in 
that city on May 2, 1881, upon the same question— taxation 
for a graded school. The act was similar to the previous one, 
containing also a provision that money raised by taxes paid 
by whites should be devoted exclusively to the education of 
white children, and that money raised by taxes paid by Ne- 
groes should be devoted exclusively to the education of 
Negro children. 7 This time, through the strenuous efforts of 

3 Greensboro Patriot, January 17, 1877. 

i Laws and Resolutions of North Carolina, 1880, 27, sec. 8 Act of March 
29, 1880. 

5 Charles L. Coon, "The Beginnings of the North Carolina City Schools, 
1867-1887," South Atlantic Quarterly, vol. XII (July 1913), 244. Hereafter 
referred to as Coon, "The Beginnings of . . . City Schools." 

e Coon, "The Beginnings of . . . City Schools," 244. 

7 Laws and Resolutions of North Carolina, 1881, 189, sec. 3. Act of March 
5, 1881. 

348 The North Carolina Historical Review 

Julius A. Bonitz, the editor of the Goldsboro Messenger, the 
bill passed. 8 The town of Durham, apparently heartened by 
the success of the whites in Goldsboro, secured permissive 
legislation and also established graded schools with money 
collected from the whites supporting white schools and 
money collected from the Negroes supporting Negro schools. 9 

On March 8, 1883, the legislature of North Carolina recog- 
nized the division of local school taxes and authorized, by 
a general statute, any school district in the state to vote local 
taxes on that basis. The procedure was as follows: A written 
petition signed by ten white voters would entitle the county 
commissioners to order an election to be held. Likewise, a 
petition signed by ten colored voters would bring about a 
similar effect. In either case, the taxes collected were to 
support separate schools, from the whites in support of white 
schools; from the Negroes in support of Negro schools. 10 
Describing the law as a "monstrous enactment— a disgrace to 
the State," a Negro paper of the state, the Salisbury Star of 
Zion, predicted that it would destroy the colored schools. 11 

The passage of this general statute was due, unquestion- 
ably, to the persistent urgings of newspapers like the Clinton 
Caucasian, the Goldsboro Messenger, and The News and 
Observer (Raleigh). The former was one of the first publi- 
cations in the state to advocate the doctrine that each race 
should be held responsible for the education of its children. 
It argued that such a system would benefit both races. 

It will unify the whites in favor of a more liberal system of 
public schools for their race, which they would cheerfully and 
willingly sustain; and, as the blacks are imitative creatures, 
they would be induced to do their best in the same direction. 
Thrown upon their own resources and seeing that they will have 
to depend on themselves, all of them would pay their poll tax; 
whereas now, many thousands of them evade payments. 12 

8 Coon, "The Beginnings of . . . City Schools," 244. 

9 Laws and Resolutions, 231, sec. 3. Act of March 9, 1881. 

10 The Code of North Carolina, 1883, vol. II, sections 2593 and 2595. 

11 See the New York Age, March 3, 1883. Whether this forecast would 
have been borne out will never be known, for three years later the North 
Carolina Supreme Court declared the statute unconstitutional. 

13 Quoted in the Wilmington Daily Review, March 14, 1883. 

Public School Education For Negroes 349 

The News and Observer, concurring in this view, com- 
mended the measure as "doing no one an injustice, but as 
promising to aid greatly in rendering our schools more effici- 
ent/' 13 This paper, obviously, had in mind the white schools, 
for earlier in 1883 it had complained that of the $172,000 
expended in 1882 for Negro schools, "under $70,000" was 
paid by that group; therefore, "the whites contribute $100,000 
a year toward the colored schools besides paying for the white 
schools." 14 The implication, apparently, was that the money 
the whites "gave" to the Negro schools ought to be retained 
for the advancement of its own schools. As we have seen, the 
legislature of 1883 so authorized. 

Although many local white taxpayers in the towns and 
cities of the state took advantage of the general statute or 
specific acts by the legislature authorizing the division of 
school taxes along race lines through a popular vote, Tar- 
boro offers, perhaps, the most striking illustration of their 
utter failure to bring this about. On April 2, 1883, the legis- 
lature authorized an election upon the question of taxation 
for graded schools in that predominantly Negro city— one 
school for the Negro children and one for the white children. 
The law, as usual, stipulated that taxes collected from the 
whites would be applied to the support of white schools, and 
taxes collected from the Negroes would be applied to the 
support of Negro schools. 15 The editor of The Southerner 
(Tarboro), obviously pessimistic as to the outcome of the 
voting, warned the whites of the city as early as April 12, 
1883, almost a month before the election, that the "com- 
bination of a few large taxpayers with the mass of the negro 
vote" might possibly defeat the project. 16 When we note the 
amount of money which would be applied to the graded 
schools for each race, as over against the number of Negroes 
and whites in the city's school population, we can understand 
the white editor's pessimism. There were 884 Negro school 

13 The News and Observer (Raleigh), February 2, 1883. 
u Quoted in the Greenville Eastern Reflector, January 31, 1883. 
35 Laws and Resolutions of North Carolina, 1883, 249, sec. 3. Act of April 
2 1883 
' 16 The Southerner (Tarboro), April 12, 1883. 

350 The North Carolina Historical Review 

children in Tarboro, but only 374 whites; yet if the election 
results favored the graded school, the amount of money spent 
on the white schools would be $5,650, but only $1,942 would 
be allocated to the Negro schools. 17 

When the final vote was counted, and the results— 301 
against and 154 for the graded school bill— were announced, 
the Southerner promptly accused the Negroes of bringing 
about the defeat, saying that "the whites as a general thing 
voted for it, and the colored people against it." 18 In a de- 
cidedly bitter and spleeny editorial, the editor said in part: 

The vote against it [the graded school] was cast, with the ex- 
ception of a few property owners, by negroes who had for their 
reason that not enough of the money was given to them. On 
them rests the blame of a failure, and they have shown a degree 
of ingratitude that should instill disgust and contempt in the 
breast of those who have been paying much to their support 
and education. Race prejudice defeated the bill, and the color 
line was drawn by the black ingrate. Two-thirds of the money 
that is collected annually in this county for schools is expended 
for the benefit of the colored schools, and three-fourths of it is 
paid by white property owners. 19 

As a result of the decisive defeat of the Tarboro school 
bill by the Negro voters of that city, the white citizens 
of another heavily Negro populated city, New Bern, looked 
forward to their graded school election with grave misgiv- 
ings. 20 On May 6, the day preceding the election, these 
doubts gave way to entreaties. The Negroes were asked to 
"remember that when they want to build churches . . . they 
call upon their white friends to help them/' So now, the 
whites queried, "is it asking too much of our colored friends 
to help us adopt our school bill?" 21 At least one segment 
of the city's Negro population, the Negro public school teach- 
ers of New Bern and Craven County, heeded these pleas for 
they promised unqualified support of the bill. In a hastily 

17 The Southerner (Tarboro), April 12, 1883. 

18 The Southerner (Tarboro), May 10, 1883. 
10 The Southerner (Tarboro), May 10, 1883. 

20 Laws and Resolutions of North Carolina, 1883, 111. Act of February 13, 

21 New Bern Daily Journal, May 6, 1883. 

Public School Education For Negroes 351 

called meeting in New Bern on May 5, they drew up the 
following resolutions which are interesting for the phrase- 
ology as well as the point of view expressed: 

. . . That we are in favor of the bill as passed by the wise law 
makers of North Carolina, because it places education in reach 
of the poor children. 

2. Politicians and enemies of colored education tell the colored 
voters not to vote for the Graded School Bill because it is class 
legislation; this is not true, the bill simply provides that each 
race educate their children. 

3. This bill is the wisest school bill the legislature has passed 
in years; it teaches us one simple and useful lesson - a lesson 
that is worth more to us as a race than thousands of gold dol- 
lars ; that lesson may be stated thus : To become a powerful race 
we must depend on ourselves; this is the royal road to honor, 
wealth and virtue. 

4. We shall be greatly surprised if the colored voters of New 
Bern fail to vote for this bill (for education.) We feel sure that 
every Negro who possesses pride of race will vote for this mea- 
sure. 22 

Apparently the Negro teachers of Craven County were "great- 
ly surprised" following the May 7 election; for although the 
school bill was carried 376 to 296, of the ballots against it, 
all but "thirty or forty" were cast by Negroes. 23 

In order to meet the growing discontent of the whites 
living in the densely Negro populated eastern cities and 
towns— discontent caused by their inability, in some instances, 
to enact local legislation which was designed to divide the 
school taxes along racial lines because the Negro vote was 
sufficiently large enough to defeat them— the legislature on 
March 11, 1885, passed an act which gave to the justices of 
the peace and the county commissioners who, under a pre- 
vious enactment in 1877 were appointed by the legislature, 
the right to elect the members to the county board of educa- 
tion. The board itself was "to consist of three residents of 
their county, who shall be men of good moral character, and 
who shall be qualified by education and experience and in- 

New Bern Daily Journal, May 6, 1883. 
New Bern Daily Journal, May 8, 1883. 

352 The North Carolina Historical Review 

terest to specially further the public educational of their 

■ » 94. 


The above procedure, in effect, eliminated many Negroes 
from the county board of education, for it was hardly con- 
ceivable that the Democrats who controlled the legislature 
would appoint an appreciable number of Negro Republican 
justices of the peace, or that the justices of the peace, in turn, 
would appoint Negro Republicans as county commissioners. 
Since these men elected the county school board, it is there- 
fore safe to assume that they selected Democrats "of good 
moral character," sound education, and the proper experience 
and wisdom "to further the public educational interest" of the 
white children of their respective counties. 

Thus, with the Democrats able to dominate the situation, 
the county school board was authorized to apportion two- 
thirds of the total school money to the school districts in 
proportion to the number of children, the remaining one- 
third to "be apportioned in such manner as to equalize school 
facilities to all districts of the county, as far as may be prac- 
ticable and just to all concerned, without discrimination in 
favor of or to the prejudice of either race." 25 That the one- 
third invariably found its way to the white school districts 
in the "Negro counties," thus giving them a majority of the 
school monies in spite of the fact that the majority of the 
school population was colored, is attested to by the vigorous 
protest written by the Negro members of the North Carolina 
Senate in 1885 opposing the measure. 

The passage of this law marked the high point of educa- 
tional limitations imposed upon the Negroes of North Caro- 
lina between 1877 and 1894. In view of these laws, only 
democratic translation of them by the North Carolina Su- 
preme Court could encourage the Negroes to look forward 
to the retention of some of the educational privileges and 
rights they enjoyed between 1868 and 1876. 

Between "the glorious" Democratic victory in 1876 and the 
defeat of that party in 1894 by a "mongrel" Republican 

^Laws and Resolutions of North Carolina, 1885, 174, sec. 1. Act of March 
11, 1885. 

25 Laws and Resolutions of North Carolina 1885, 174, sec. 1. Act of March 
11, 1885. 

Public School Education For Negroes 353 

party, the Democratic dominated General Assembly enacted, 
as we have seen above, a series of well-defined public school 
statutes spelling out the legal status of the Negroes of the 
state. The question at this point, then, may well be: "To what 
extent did the members of the North Carolina Supreme 
Court regard themselves as the policemen of these laws?" 
The query is of special significance because Article IV, sec- 
tion 21 of the state constitution declared that the Supreme 
Court justices were to be elected "by the qualified voters of 
the State," for a term of eight years. 26 Accordingly, if the 
masses of the white citizens of North Carolina, as reflected 
in the public school laws passed by the legislators, were so 
far in favor of white supremacy as to demand the protection 
of their interests, would the judges hold opinions very differ- 
ent? A partial answer can be found in an examination of the 
various school decisions the court made which involved the 
rights and privileges of the Negroes of North Carolina. 

However, if the decision it handed down in its first "educa- 
tion case" was any criterion as to its attitude with respect to 
the education of Negro children, that group could expect 
little by way of equal justice. 27 The background to the Small- 
wood case is as follows. In 1883, the legislature authorized 
an election to be held in New Bern for the purpose of de- 
termining whether that city would establish a graded school. 28 
Section 3 of that act provided that the tax raised from the 
polls and property of white persons were to be devoted to 
"sustaining" a school for the white children, and that money 
raised from the polls and property of Negroes were to be 
used for supporting their school. 29 Following the election on 
May 7, 1883, J. W. Smallwood and other taxpayers of New 
Bern instituted proceeding against the mayor and the city 
council before the Superior Court of Craven County to pre- 

29 Constitution of North Carolina as Amended by the Constitutional Con- 
vention of 1875. For a study of the convention, see William D. Harris, "The 
Movement for Constitutional Change in North Carolina" (unpublished 
M.A. thesis, University of North Carolina, 1932). 

27 Smallwood and others vs. City of New Bern, 90 N. C 36 (1884). 

28 Laws and Resolutions of North Carolina, 1883, 117. Act of February 
13, 1883. 

29 Laws and Resolutions of North Carolina, 1883, 117, sec. 3. Act of Feb- 
ruary 13, 1883. 

354 The North Carolina Historical Review 

vent them from collecting taxes for the proposed graded 
school on the ground that the tax had not been approved by 
a majority of the qualified voters of New Bern. 30 The lower 
court held for the city, and the plaintiffs appealed to the state 
supreme court. There, the court held, on a legal technicality, 
that even though there was some question as to whether a 
majority of the qualified registered voters of New Bern had 
voted for the establishment of a graded school system, the 
fact that the mayor and the city council, who had been au- 
thorized and required by the legislature to submit the ques- 
tion to the voters of the city, 31 "having ascertained that a ma- 
jority of the qualified voters voted 'for schools/ their finding 
and decision in that respect ... is final and conclusive." 32 
However, the following remarks of Justice Merrimon are most 
significant in that they suggest that the court was not yet 
ready to decide the constitutionality of the laws dividing the 
school monies along race lines: 

It is hinted in the plaintiff's affidavit that the act is not valid, 
but so grave a question ought to be raised by proper pleadings, 
and generally with the avowed purpose. And such a question 
ought always to be argued by council. It is a matter of most 
serious moment to declare an act of the legislature unconstitu- 
tional and void. 33 

Yet, three years later, in 1886, this same court, in a series 
of decisions, flatly and unequivocably declared that such laws 
were unconstitutional and void. 34 In the first of the series, 
Puitt vs. Commissioners of Gaston County, the North Caro- 
lina Supreme Court decided that "a law which allows a tax 
on polls of one color and on property owned by persons of the 
same color, to be applied exclusively to the education of chil- 
dren of that color, is unconstitutional" in that it violated the 
last clause of Article IX, section 2 of the constitution of North 
Carolina which states that "there shall be no discrimination in 

30 Laws and Resolutions of North Carolina, 1883, 117, Sec. 3 Act of Feb- 
uary 13, 1883. 

31 Laws and Resolutions, 1883, sec. 1. 

32 Smallwood and others vs. City of New Bern, 90 N. C. 36 (1884), 41. 
^Smallwood and others vs. City of New Bern, 90 N. C. 36 (1884), 41. 

34 Puitt vs. Commissioners, 94 N. C. 709 (1886) ; Riggsbee vs. Town of Dur- 
ham, 94 N. C. 800(1886). 

Public School Education For Negroes 355 

favor of or to the prejudice of either race." In the opinion, 
conspicuous for its spirit of liberalism, Chief Justice Smith 

Nor can we shut our eyes to the fact that the vast bulk of prop- 
erty yielding the fruits of taxation, belongs to the white people 
of the State, and very little is held by the emancipated race ; and 
yet, the needs of the latter for free tuition, in proportion to its 
numbers, are as great, or greater than the needs of the former. 35 

As was to be expected, the Democratic newspapers of the 
state did not concur in the decision, but perhaps the most 
bitter opposition came from the New Bern Daily Journal. 
Oddly enough, the state constitution and not the State Su- 
preme Court was denounced. 

A constitution that will not allow the white people to tax them- 
selves for the benefit of their schools, after they have contributed 
liberally to negro schools, is not the constitution that the white 
people of North Carolina want. The schools have been made 
separate and distinct; the constitution and the laws direct that 
the public school fund shall be divided per capita between the 
races. This is all right. But after the schools have been separated 
each receives its proportionate share of the public school funds, 
these schools ought to have the right to supplement their funds 
with additional taxes if they see fit, and a constitution that de- 
nies them this right should be speedily abolished. 36 

In 1887 the North Carolina Supreme Court not only re- 
affirmed the principle as set forth in Puitt vs. Commissioners, 
and Riggsbee vs. Durham, but in Duke vs. Brown, it overrul- 
ed the Smallwood doctrine. The case developed out of the 
passage of an act by the legislative session of 1885 which 
authorized, upon an approving popular vote of a majority of 
those who might vote, the issue of bonds in the aggregate of 
$15,000 to enable the school commissioners of Durham to 
secure a loan to be expended "in the purchase and erection 
of suitable grounds and buildings for the Durham graded or 
public school for white children/' 37 The lower court held to 

85 Puitt vs. Commissioners, 94 N. C. 709, 715-716. 
38 New Bern Daily Journal, May 16, 1886. 

37 Duke vs. Brown, 96 N. C. 127(1887); Laws and Resolutions of North 
Carolina, 1885, c. 87, sections 2 and 3. Act of March 7, 1885. 

356 The North Carolina Historical Review 

the letter of the act, and declared against Duke who had 
argued that the bill failed to receive a majority of the votes 
of the qualified voters of the city. The case was appealed to 
the state Supreme Court. Chief Justice Smith, in reversing 
the decision of the lower court, held that a majority of the 
qualified voters, and not merely of those voting, was neces- 
sary to enable a city or town to contract a debt. The reasoning 
of the Chief Justice follows: 

Indifference is not the test ; an active and expressed approval is 
necessary [italics Smith's] , and this is ascertained by a majority 
of those entitled to vote. However forcible may be the reasoning, 
and however numerous the rulings in other states, which construe 
a failure to vote as an acquiescence in what is done by those who 
do vote, we cannot put such an interpretation upon our organic 
law. 38 

As a result of these unexpected decisions by the North 
Carolina Supreme Court in 1886 and 1887, Wilson, Golds- 
boro, Kinston, and other towns and cities in the state aban- 
doned their white graded school system rather than suppprt 
schools for their Negro children. However, it did not take 
these local whites long to see the absurdity of denying a pub- 
lic school education to their children in order to deny such 
an education to the Negro children, and consequently they 
re-established their schools, making provisions for the Negro 
children at the same time. 39 

The whites, although complying with the letter of the law, 
nonetheless continued to complain about "the unjust division 
of the school money." Dissatisfaction was most vigorously ex- 
pressed in Franklin, Lenoir, Columbus, and Currituck coun- 
ties. 40 A disgruntled Sampson County farmer summed up the 
sentiments of many North Carolina whites when he said: 

We have two distinct races here in North Carolina - the white 
and the colored. I think it would be a good plan to have the free 
school funds divided in proportion to the tax paid by each race. 

38 Duke vs. Brown, 96 N. C. 127, 131. 

39 Coon, "The Beginnings of . . . City Schools," 246. 

^First Annual Report of the North Carolina Bureau of Labor Statistics, 
1887, 92, 93, 127, 130. 

Public School Education For Negroes 357 

I am sure it would render general satisfaction throughout the 
South among the white race, for it is fair and just to all. 41 

It can be readily seen that the non-liberal spirit of a large 
number of the white citizens of North Carolina with respect 
to public school education for Negro children, and the ap- 
parent severe and intolerant public school laws enacted by 
the General Assembly of the state were frequently assuaged 
by the rulings handed down by the state Supreme Court. 
However, it cannot be said that the somewhat liberal inter- 
pretations of the state Supreme Court won the commenda- 
tion of the white people throughout North Carolina, or appro- 
bation for some of its members. But, by and large, the judges 
who sat on the Supreme Court bench were earnest, conscien- 
tious men who rarely catered to the interest of the "white 
supremacy" shouters and were usually ready to grant pro- 
tection to the unfortunate Negroes to the very limit of the 
law. Without state Supreme Court justices like Smith, Merri- 
mon, and Clark, the status of public school education for 
the Negroes of North Carolina between 1876 and 1894 would 
have been even more precarious than it was. 

41 Second Annual Report of the North Carolina Bureau of Labor Statistics, 
1888, 130. 

By David H. Corkran 

On the night of April 22, 1751, the headmen of the Lower 
Cherokees sat in deep debate 1 in the town house at Keowee. 2 
They were nervous, worried, depressed. Bad feeling against 
the English was strong among them. In January one of their 
hunting parties from Toogaloo had had its winter haul of 
deer skins, some 330 of them, stolen by whites. 3 The Tooga- 
loos had gone to Justice Francis at Ninety-Six demanding 
help; 4 the Justice issued a search warrant permitting the In- 
dians to search the homes of his neighbors. The Toogaloos 
felt that the Justice could have been more active in their 
behalf— that, in fact, he had protected the suspects, John 
Vann and James Adair. Empty-handed the Cherokees had re- 
turned home to nurse their grudge. Such treatment was about 
what an Indian could expect. Had not James Glen, governor 
of South Carolina, in solemn treaty a year before, promised 
to punish whichever of the Creeks or Cherokees renewed 
their old feud; and when the Lower Creeks had reopened the 
war had not the Governor failed to keep his promise? Indeed, 
he had not only failed to punish the Creeks, but he had per- 
mitted the Carolina traders to sell them ammunition— in effect 
making war upon the Cherokees. 

There was little a Cherokee could do about it except to 
complain, unless he was willing to go to war against the 
English and thus increase the number of his nation's enemies. 
Of course, disguised as someone else, as an Indian of another 
tribe, he might get a little satisfaction. That is what the 
Cherokees had been doing. For several years Miamis, Otta- 
was, and Senecas had been coming into the nation on 
their way to make war upon the Catawbas and the Creeks. 5 

1 Indian Books of South Carolina (Historical Commission of South Caro- 
lina, Columbia, S. C.)» H, 133. Hereafter cited as Indian Books of South 

a This village site is upon the Keowee River in Oconee County, South 

3 Indian Books of South Carolina, II, 17-20. 

* Indian Books of South Carolina, II, 17-20. 

6 Indian Books of South Carolina, II, 17-20. 


The Unpleasantness at Stecoe 359 

The visitors from across the Ohio had had a pretty strong 
indoctrination into the French point of view. When they 
heard their Cherokee hosts complain of Carolina they com- 
miserated with them, expressed indignation, and urged ac- 
tion, inviting the Cherokees to come along with them to 
have a little fun at Carolina's expense. This some of the 
Lower Towns' folks had done. Mixed parties of Cherokees 
and Senecas posing as 100 per cent Seneca had passed near 
Ninety-Six to trample crops, and kill and maim cattle and 
hogs, threatening individual whites and behaving in such 
an alarming fashion that great uneasiness spread along the 
South Carolina frontier. 6 Talk went that an Indian war was 
in the making. Then the inevitable had happened; two white 
men had been killed "accidentally," of course. 

One night Cherokees crying "Nottaways, Nottaways" to 
indicate they were Northwards had assaulted Clement's store 
at Oconees in northeast Georgia when it was occupied by 
two whites and some Chickasaws. The whites and one of 
the Chickasaws had been killed and one of the Chickasaws 
made prisoner. The raiders, pleased with themselves, returned 
to the Lower Towns alleging that they had been in pursuit 
of some Creeks who, they thought, had taken refuge in the 
trader's store. 7 In the Lower towns there was a good deal of 
quiet pleasure over the episode; everybody feeling that it 
made up to some extent for their grievances against Carolina, 8 
but the headmen knew that eventually Carolina would de- 
mand satisfaction for the slain and they worried. The Chicka- 
saws they could deal with. When the Squirrel King sent a 
husky delegation to Keowee with talk of war unless Keowee 
made immediate apologies, Keowee released the Chicka- 
saw prisoner and sent deputies with him to apologize. 9 But 
the whites were different— difficult— hard to please. The 
Cherokees had awaited South Carolina's reaction with a good 
deal of fear. Then they heard the worst. A Keowee fellow 

6 South Carolina Council Journal (Historical Commission of South Caro- 
lina, Columbia, S. C)> April 16, 1751, 28-29. These records are the original 
manuscript journals and hereafter will be cited as South Carolina Council 

7 South Carolina Council Journal, March 22, 1751, 1. 

8 South Carolina Council Journal, June 11, 1751, 174-175. 

9 Indian Books of South Carolina, II, 17-20. 

360 The North Carolina Historical Review 

came up the path from Charlestown with a story that a 
thousand whites were coming against the nation. 10 The head- 
men gathered in the Keowee townhouse to assay the news. It 
happened that the report was false— perhaps it was something 
that an angry settler had said ought to be done or would be 
done if the Indians didn't behave— something even discussed 
in the Assembly but not yet acted upon, at any rate. 

Nevertheless, to the Keowees, it fitted into a pattern of fear 
already generated. A few weeks before, the Little Carpenter, 
a rising Overfull, had brought a party of Northwards down 
to Keowee to help against the Creeks. Saying that he had 
been north of the Ohio that winter, he reported that he 
had learned that the governors of Carolina and New York 
planned a joint attack upon the Cherokees with a great force 
of Northwards and an army of whites. 11 The new story from 
Carolina seemed to confirm this. To sit still in the face of 
such dreadful tidings was more than the headmen could tol- 
erate; far better to act. They decided to send runners to the 
rest of the nation with the proposal that the Cherokees strike 
first by killing the Carolina traders among them. 12 

Killing the traders, that spring, had an especial attractive- 
ness to their Cherokee customers. Two years of poor hunts 
had been caused by the Creek war. At the same time their 
demand for guns, ammunition, paint, and goods had increased 
and plunged the Lower Towns men into heavy debt. 13 Death 
was none too good for a trader who pressed for payment of 
debts, especially when one suspected him of being a cheat who 
used false weights and measures. On that April night Keowee 
was convinced that all Carolina was bad. So runners sped 
away carrying the baleful talk to the Middle Settlements 14 
under the Cowee Mountains, to the Out Towns of Tuckaseigie 
River; 15 and far over the Twenty-Four Mountains to Chotte 
by the Tennessee, 16 the mother town of all. 

10 Indian Books of South Carolina, II, 131-132. 

11 Indian Books of South Carolina, II, 117-118. 
*? Indian Books of South Carolina, II, 133. 

13 Indian Books of South Carolina, II, 52-53. 

14 The sites of these villages are in Macon County, North Carolina, near or 
upon the Little Tennesee River. 

15 These village sites are in Swain County, North Carolina, from Bryson 
City eastward. 

16 This site is in Monroe County, Tennessee. 

The Unpleasantness at Stecoe 361 

Not all the nation shared the Keo wee's bad thoughts. 
Keowee, after all, was the Cherokee frontier and buffer 
against the whites— the edge where irritations were most 
frequent. Keowee was alone in its war with the Creeks, and 
Keowee had a tendency to independence of the other towns 
upon which certain seats of power in the nation looked 
askance. Specifically these were Hiwassee, 17 Great Tellico, 18 
and Chotte. Hiwassee and Great Tellico formed a coalition of 
ambition through which Carolina in spite of Chotte, was 
currently attempting to rule the Cherokees. The Great Raven 
of Hiwassee had been appointed by Carolina to be guardian 
of the minority of Ammonscossittee, the Young Emperor of 
Great Tellico. The Young Emperor aspired to head the nation. 
He was surrounded by a coterie of headmen which included 
the two Tacites of Tellico, Johnny and Osteneco, and Caesar 
of Chatuge, the only Cherokee who understood and spoke 
English well, by reason of his having been a slave in Carolina 
during the previous century. His councillors, subsidized by 
Carolina and dispensing Carolina favors, carried out the 
English will in the nation. Under the influence of Cornelius 
Dougherty, the Hiwassee trader, and Robert Goudy, the 
Tellico trader, they epitomized the benefits to the Cherokees 
of their English association and alliance. Principal among 
them in actual power and influence was the Raven of Hiwas- 
see. While the Young Emperor's position in the Cherokee 
polity was illegitimate, his guardian was war captain of the 
Valley 19 and superior in prestige to most of the Middle Settle- 
ments headmen. His regional office combined with his Eng- 
lish appointment made him a powerful figure indeed. The 
Valley, at peace with the Creeks, having no quarrel with the 
English and possessing confidence in Dougherty, their trader, 
would have nothing to do with the Keowee proposals if a 
Keowee runner went near them. 

Nor it seems would the Middle Settlements where feeling 
for the English was fairly good and respect for the Raven 

17 Near present day Murphy, Cherokee County, North Carolina. 

18 Near present day Tellico Plains, Monroe County, Tennessee. 

19 The sites of the valley towns are on or near the Hiwassee Valley in 
Cherokee County, North Carolina. 

362 The North Carolina Historical Review 

of Hiwassee high. At Wattoga, 20 the Keowee runner heading 
for the Overhills was halted by headmen who took his gun 
and blanket from him, divesting him of his warlike aspect, 
and ordered him to go back to the Lower Towns and tell 
them to stop their nonsense. 21 Chotte, therefore, did not 
get the Keowee message to which it might have lent sympa- 
thetic ears. 

Chotte, principal of the Overhill towns and claiming to 
be Mother Town of all the Cherokees, home of the Mother 
Council and of Old Hop, the Fire King— traditional First Man 
of the Nation— was out of tune with the pseudo— Emperorship 
and the Hiwassee— Tellico coalition. Chotte saw the coalition 
as an alien thing, the tool of the English who were aspirant 
to a dominance in the nation which rightfully belonged to 
Chotte; one of the disruptive, centrifugal forces which pre- 
vented the Cherokees from working as a unit under their 
traditional priestly, nativist, and nationalistic leadership. 
Chotte, however, could not destroy the Carolina-Hiwassee- 
Tellico lineup. The coalition had the power of guns and 
goods— stuff the Cherokees needed in order to survive. With 
presents and trade favors it possessed the rulers in many 
towns. Its tentacles crossed clan and blood ties in insidious 
ways. Chotte's only hope was by deviousness to thwart or 
undermine the coalition, to gather discontent to itself, and 
to work its own policies in quiet ways. Chotte's greatest coup 
had been to make a peace for all the nation with the French 
in the very face of English disapproval, and by that peace to 
free itself from the bitter French inspired assaults of the 
Northward Indians— Canadians, Ottawas, Miamis, Iroquois. 
This notable triumph had lost some of its lustre because it had 
brought on the Creek war. The Northwards, now at peace 
with the Cherokees, had come to fraternize with them and 
to use their towns as bases for attacks upon the Creeks. Young 
Cherokees, seeking war names, went with Northward parties 
against the Creeks and the Creeks, discovering 22 them, de- 

20 Near present day Franklin, Macon County, North Carolina. 

a Indian Books of South Carolina, II, 55-61. 

22 The Colonial Records of the State of Georgia (Georgia Department of 
Archives and History, Atlanta, Georgia), XXVII, 116. This volume is one of 
ten typescript volumes which complete The Colonial Records of the State 
of Georgia, prepared by workers of the WPA. 

The Unpleasantness at Stecqe 363 

clared war upon the Cherokees. At this turn* of events the 
whole nation looked with disapproval upon Chotte's North- 
ward peace. 23 After some years of conflict Hiwassee-Tellico 
with a major assist from Goudy and Dougherty managed to 
get the Creeks off their own backs. They allowed the Gun 
Merchant, the First Man of the Upper Creeks, to have trade 
privileges with their traders whose prices were considerably 
lower than those of the English traders among the Creeks. 24 
The Upper Creek withdrawal from the war confined it to the 
Lower Creeks and the Lower Cherokees. Hiwassee-Tellico 
trusted Carolina to resolve that situation. Governor Glen, 
however, with only a trade embargo as a weapon was unwill- 
ing to force the Lower Creeks to make a peace; for Georgia 
traders and the French, of course, would not respect his em- 
bargo. 25 Hiwassee-Tellico influence at Keowee was there- 
fore at a low ebb. 

Chotte, frowned on for the bad consequences of its North- 
ward peace, sought to ameliorate the lot of the Lower Towns 
by channelling Northward war parties to their aid, going so 
far as to send the Little Carpenter north to recruit Senecas. 26 
Chotte was thus able to enjoy its peace and retain some of 
its prestige and influence, at least with the anti-Carolina 
Lower Towns. Had the Keowee runners gotten through to 
Old Hop, he might have found their story and mood useful 
to him in embarassing Tellico-Hiwassee, though it is doubt- 
ful if he would have wanted war. 

It was at Stecoe in the Out Towns on Tuckaseigie River 
that the Keowee spark had found ready tinder. The Out 
Towns had been much visited by Northwards who came to 
them through Balsam and Soco gaps. 27 Out Towns warriors 
had gone with them on their excursions toward Carolina and 
the Catawbas. Stecoe (now on the Thomas farm near Whit- 

33 Public Records of South Carolina (Sainsbury Transcripts, Historical 
Commission of South Carolina, Columbia, South Carolina), XXIII, 12-13. 

24 South Carolina Council Journal, July 11, 1750, 174. 

25 Allen D. Candler, The Colonial Records of the State of Georgia (Atlanta: 
L. I. Knight, 1904-1916, 26 volumes), VI, October 4, 1750, 341-342. See also 
South Carolina Council House Journal (photostats, Historical Commission 
of South Carolina, Columbia, South Carolina) , July 25, 1750, 173. 

26 Indian Books of South Carolina, II, 77-79, U 6-118. 

27 South Carolina Council Journal, April 1, 1751, 2. 

364 The North Carolina Historical Review 

tier, Swain County, North Carolina), seems to have had a hard 
core of anti-English sentiment. Report there on April 26 of 
what the Keowee runner had said in the town house of Kit- 
tuwa, 28 the Mother town of the Out Towns, found ready list- 
eners. One Thigh, the Slave Catcher of Connutory, a man 
of fiery temperament who while down-country, had shot 
and wounded a white man, leaped up and wanted to know 
why the Stecoes permitted their trader, Bernard Hughes, to 
live. 29 At once there was an uproar. On this a Cherokee girl, 
mistress to Hughes, slipped out of the town house and ran 
to warn the trader. While the maddened Stecoes looted his 
deserted store, Hughes and the other Stecoe whites fled up 
the path along the river to the town of Tuckasiegie where 
Robert Bunning traded. 30 They took shelter in Bunning's 
house while Bunning went to see the headman of the town. 
He explained the situation and reminded the headman that 
it was beloved men of this very town who had helped make 
the Treaty of Alliance of 1730 with the Great King George. 
Promising to protect the white men, the headman dispatched 
Bunning to Hiwassee sixty miles away to report the affair 
to the Raven. 31 

Throughout the Middle Settlements rumor spread that 
Bernard Hughes and three whites had been killed at Stecoe, 
that this was only the beginning, that all the traders were 
about to be killed. 32 At once the traders stampeded from the 
Middle and Lower Settlements to Augusta and Ninety-Six. 
Panic spread along the frontier. John Watts and those fleeing 
with him to Ninety-Six carried a story that they had barely 
escaped and that at near-by Coronico, Hugh Murphy, on 
his way up to the nation, had been shot and wounded by 
an Indian. 33 Inhabitants of the Ninety-Six region streamed 
down to the Congarees for safety. Others started to fortify 
their homes. 34 

28 This townsite is in Swain County, North Carolina, not far from Bryson 

29 South Carolina Council Journal, June 8, 1751, 158. 

30 South Carolina Council Journal, June 8, 1751, 158. 

31 South Carolina Council Journal, June 8, 1751, 158. 

32 Indian Books of South Carolina, II, 53. See also the South Carolina 
Council Journal, June 11, 1751, 174-175. 

33 South Carolina Council Journal, May 7, 1751, 63-65. 

34 Indian Books of South Carolina, II, 51. 

The Unpleasantness at Stecoe 365 

Among the Cherokees a number of level-headed people, 
Indian and white, set about straightening out the mess. On 
hearing Bunning's report, the Old Raven of Hiwassee sent 
his son and several warriors with Bunning to tell the Stecoes 
to stop their foolishness and return the stolen goods or else 
the awful Raven himself would visit them. The messengers 
found Stecoe deserted. 35 Discovering that they had acted 
alone in an enterprise that had miscarried, Stecoes — men, 
women, and children, had taken to the hills in alarm. 

The Raven's son hauled down the British flag which waved 
over the empty townhouse, saying the people were unworthy 
of it, and went over to Jore to wait the return of the Stecoes 
to their town. He soon received an abject message from them: 
"their doggs and their hoggs and themselves were mad and 
it was all by a lying talk from Keowee that they did what 
they did" that they were sorry and would pay for the goods. 36 

At Keowee itself, as news of the events at Stecoe came in 
and the traders fled, there were second thoughts. Whatever 
the Keowees had proposed, and Skiagunsta later denied that 
harm was meant, it was unsuccessful. One town had looted 
its trader's store; somewhere a white man had been wound- 
ed; and a great many traders had piled out of the nation 
bawling the alarm as they went. In a few days, with some- 
thing akin to the clatter of fiasco about their ears, the Lower 
Towns' headmen drew up in their dignity and gravely de- 
manded that Stecoe return Trader Hughes's goods. 37 

Chotte mantained a firm grip on its impulses. Hot-heads, 
hearing of the excitement at Stecoe, set out to loot Anthony 
Dean's store at Toquo and settle a few scores with the trader 
himself, but Old Hop, First Man of the Overhills, sent word 
to his people that the white men must not be harmed. He 
took Dean into his own house for safekeeping and required 
those who had robbed the store to return the goods. 38 Old 
Hop knew as well as anyone else that a break with the Eng- 
lish at this juncture would be a national disaster. 

35 Indian Books of South Carolina, II, 81-82 ; South Carolina Council Jour- 
nal, June 8, 1751, 158-160. 

36 Indian Books of South Carolina, II, 81-82. 

37 Indian Books of South Carolina, II, 116-118. 

38 Indian Books of South Carolina, III, Dean to Glen, April 13, 1752. 

366 The North Carolina Historical Review 

With such attitudes around them the Stecoes brought back 
Hughes's goods; that is, all except something over 400 lbs. 
weight of deerskins and £50 or £60 value of goods damaged 
in the looting or unaccounted for. 39 

All the headmen knew that the Stecoe affair, magnified 
in rumor and fear, would create a violent reaction in Charles- 
town. They, therefore, made an effort to mitigate the blow 
they feared by sending Governor Glen assurances of their 
friendship and accounts of the steps they had taken to make 
reparation for the unpleasant business. 40 

The appeals were in vain. The South Carolina Provincial 
Assembly demanded action. They had already gone on rec- 
ord as desiring an embargo on the trade to get the Cherokees 
to drive the Northward Indians from their midst, but Glen 
had refused to take the step. The Cherokees, he held, were 
necessary for the prosperity and security of Carolina. An 
embargo might throw them into the arms of the French. 
Furthermore, since the Cherokees had complied with the 
terms of the Treaty of 1749 and the Creeks had not, the 
governor argued: "I therefore do not think it will be consis- 
tent with natural justice and equity nor with our solemn 
engagements to Cherokees to give them up a prey to the 
Creeks to have their throats cut which must infallibly be the 
case if we withdraw the trade from them and leave them 
without either arms or ammunition to defend themselves." 41 

In the face of a mounting clamor Glen could not hold his 
enlightened opinion. Reports from Ninety-Six were very cri- 
tical of him. The petition headed by Justice Francis's name 
stated that the petitioners had complained before but that 
the governor had paid no attention. 42 James Adair, a friend of 
Francis and an enemy of Glen, wrote that Glen had disre- 
garded the traders reports and had been "very remiss." 43 
The Commons House echoed the point of view of Adair and 

39 Indian Books of South Carolina, II, 81-84. 

"Indian Books of South Carolina, II, 78-79, 93; South Carolina Council 
Journal, June 5, 1751, 147-148. 

a South Carolina Journal of the Upper House of Assembly (Historical 
Commission of South Carolina, Columbia, South Carolina), April 27, 1751, 
57. Hereafter cited as Journal of the Upper House. 

"Journal of the Upper House, May 9, 1751, 80-81. 

43 Indian Books of South Carolina, II, 58-59. 

The Unpleasantness at Stecoe 367 

Francis and appointed a committee to draw up complaints 
to the crown against the governor. 

Glen had reason to distrust reports from Ninety-Six. All- 
the evidence indicated that Northward depredations in that 
region arose from Cherokee anger over the theft of the Too- 
galoos' deerskins. 44 The Cherokees thought that Justice Fran- 
cis shielded friends and retainers. They suspected James 
Adair. Glen suspended Francis from the command of his 
ranger company and sent reports to the Commons house dis- 
crediting the justice. In the face of the opposition he weak- 
ened. The Assembly was confronted by a stack of petitions 
demanding redress and a gang of panicky traders who had 
fled the Cherokee country and loudly declared that the 
Cherokees intended war. The Commons demanded that 
Governor Glen place an embargo on trade with the Cherokees 
and keep it in force until the Indians had given full satis- 
faction for the Oconees murders, the attack on Murphy, and 
the looting of Hughes's store. 45 

On June 8, Glen prepared a letter to the Raven of Hiwassee 
commending him for his conduct in the crisis but telling him 
the bad news: 

... It is true the insolent behaviour of some particular per- 
sons and of two or three towns has given us grave offense and 
if passed over without showing a proper resentment might in- 
duce others to follow their pernicious example. . . . We are there- 
fore determined for the good of the Cherokee nation to punish 
those few who have misbehaved. We were at first informed that 
these Lower Cherokees who killed the white men at Oconees 
protested that they were innocent of the offense and pretended 
ignorance of the matter but we have heard since that they have 
had the insolence to boast of it. We therefore have insisted that 
some of these be delivered up to us. One of our inhabitants going 
lately to the Cherokee nation was wounded by an Eustanally Indi- 
an who fired at him with an intent to kill him, this man we have 
also demanded to be delivered up to us. The three towns Kittuwa, 
Stecoe, Connutory have behaved themselves ill. Here our traders' 
store was plundered and his goods taken and publicly divided 
amongst the people from whom they were obliged to fly to save 

44 South Carolina Commons House Journal (Historical Commission of 
South Carolina, Columbia, South Carolina), April 16, 1751, 28-29. Hereafter 
cited as Commons House Journal. 

^Commons House Journal, June 13, 1751, 585-586. 

368 The North Carolina Historical Review 

their lives . . . the headmen who ought to have been their pro- 
tectors prompted others to destroy them ... we have therefore 
demanded two of the headmen from each of those towns, espe- 
cially as have been concerned in those wicked practices and in 
particular the Slave Ketcher of Connutory ... if they do not 
comply with our reasonable request we will compel them to it 
by force. We also demand that the Little Carpenter who has for 
many years past declared himself the enemy of the English may 
be delivered up wherever he may be on delivery of this letter. I 
cannot conclude this letter without letting you know the diffi- 
culty of sending traders among you at present till we have obtain- 
ed satisfaction that we demand. . . . 46 

Despite Old Hop's determination to keep the peace the 
crisis arising from the flight of the traders sharpened the 
conflict between Chotte and the Hiwassee-Tellico align- 
ment. Hiwassee-Tellico seemed in its eagerness to satisfy 
the English, determined to break the Chotte-made peace 
with the French. Such a move would have also involved the 
Overhills in war with the Northwards, forced them to look 
to Hiwassee-Tellico and therefore to Carolina for aid, and 
enabled Carolina to end the Lower Creek-Lower Cherokee 
war. In June, Tellicoes took two French scalps on the Mis- 
sissippi. 47 By fall Northwards were assaulting the Out Towns 
on Tuckaseigie. 

While Hiwassee-Tellico struck at Chotte's French peace, 
Chotte aimed a blow at Carolina's trade monoply and em- 
bargo. With all the traders except Dougherty and Dean gone, 
it was clear that because of the panic and disturbances, trade 
would not be restored for a long time. It was also clear that 
no matter how unfair the embargo, the Cherokees must yield 
unless they could open up another source of trade. Chotte 
talked long of whether to go to the French or to Virginia 
and finally determined to try both with especial attention to 
Virginia. 48 

Late in June, 1751, before word of the Carolina embargo 
reached the nation, the Little Carpenter heading a strong 
delegation, including Long Jack of Tanase (at that time 

46 South Carolina Council Journal, June 8, 1751, 164-166. 

47 Indian Books of South Carolina, II, 123-124. 

48 South Carolina Council Journal, November 22, 1751, 427. 

The Unpleasantness at Stecoe 369 

Great Warrior of the Overhills), and the Smallpox conjurer 
of Settico, a very influential member of the Chotte Council, 
set out for Williamsburg. Very likely, too, at the same time 
someone at Chotte — Old Hop? — sent a message through 
the Creeks to the French at Fort Toulouse. 49 

Official news of the embargo saw the contenders for Cher- 
okee leadership take opposite positions. Late in July Governor 
Glen's letter reached the Raven of Hiwassee. On July 
30, the Raven, several valley headmen, the principal head- 
men of Great Tellico and Chatuge, in other words the Great 
Tellico-Hiwassee faction, met at Cornelius Dougherty's 
house and agreed to meet all of Carolina's demands or all 
they could. They would take the anti-English Slave Catcher 
of Connutory and the other offending Out Towns headmen 
to Charlestown as soon as these men came in from their sum- 
mer hunts. The Little Carpenter, having gone to Virginia, 
they could not deliver. Eager to have the embargo lifted, 
they requested a meeting with Governor Glen at Saluda on 
August 21, and as proof of their friendship they promised 
to bring the scalps of the two Frenchmen killed down river 
in June. They sent a runner to apprize Chotte of the projected 
meetings with Glen, and the two Tacites of Great Tellico, 
Johnny and Osteneco, went to sound out the Lower Towns. 50 

Chotte, though hostile to Carolina, apparently intended 
at first to take part in the proposed conference at Saluda for 
they appointed deputies. Nevertheless, when their trader, 
Anthony Dean, whom Old Hop had befriended in April, at- 
tempted to steal away in response to Glen's orders for all 
white men to leave the nation, the Chottes forcibly detained 
him as a hostage, and when after August 5 or 6 an opportuni- 
ty offered to disrupt the Tellico-Hiwassee program, they did 
not hesitate. A Shawnee runner from the Upper Creeks 
brought into Chotte a story that a Creek-Chickasaw-Cataw- 
ba coalition had been formed with Carolina to send a thous- 
and men against the Cherokees. The Chotte headmen held 
some grim meetings at which Ukanta of Chotte and Willina- 
waw of Toqua, men of no influence in Charlestown, but new- 

* 9 South Carolina Council Journal, November 19, 1751, 414. 
w Indian Books of South Carolina, II, 123-124. 

370 The North Carolina Historical Review 

ly powerful among the Overhills, talked against the Eng- 
lish. 51 This new story seemed to confirm the story of Glen s 
hostility the Little Carpenter had heard in the North during 
the previous winter. The angry headmen called in the cap- 
tive Dean and required him to write their thoughts out for the 
benefit of Governor Glen. They told the governor the stories 
they had heard and said that he must reassure them by send- 
ing the traders back into the nation. If they were kept long 
in doubt, they said, they would not be responsible for what 
happened to Dean and Dougherty. Harsh and blunt, this 
talk was quite different from the sycophantic tune of peace 
and compliance sung by the Raven of Hiwassee. 52 Chotte 
also sent runners through the nation with the Shawnee story 
of imminent attack. Great Tellico alarmed, sent to recall the 
two Tacites on their peace mission to the Lower Towns. 53 
The Lower Towns on hearing the news went into a panic. 
Keowee, Estatoe, Che wee, Toxaway, Tomassee and Oconee 
talked of breaking up and going over the hills. 54 At Hiwassee, 
the Raven bent on resolving the troubles in a way satisfactory 
to Carolina, gave the story no credence. On hearing the 
Chotte talk as written by Dean, the Raven made a talk of 
his own for the governor stating that Chotte spoke for itself 
and Tanase only, that the other Overhill towns did not agree 
with them, and sent it along with the other. 55 Nevertheless, 
the Chotte-spread story of English hostility delayed the pro- 
jected meeting for several months and might have prevented 
it altogether had not Otacite Osteneco, arriving at Keowee in 
time to hear the dreadful rumor, surmised the Chotte 
intent and decided to go himself to Charlestown and find 
out the truth. 56 There he learned that Governor Glen on the 
basis of the July 30 Hiwassee-Tellico compliance with his 
demands and the consent of his Assembly had already de- 
termined to lift the embargo. Beamer, the principal Lower 
Towns trader, and Goudy of Great Tellico were to return to 

51 Indian Books of South Carolina, II, 114. 

52 Indian Books of South Carolina, II, 114. 

53 Indian Books of South Carolina, II, 135. 
^Indian Books of South Carolina, II, 139, 146. 
55 Indian Books of South Carolina, II, 135. 

66 South Carolina Council Journal, September 1, 1751, 283. 

The Unpleasantness at Stecoe 371 

the nation with the good news and to round up the headmen 
for a great meeting in Charlestown to discuss grievances 
and trade and make a new treaty. 57 

While these events took place in Charlestown and in the 
nation, the Little Carpenter was in Williamsburg, the Virginia 
capitol, presenting the Cherokee case. Briefly, it was that by 
the Treaty of 1730 made in England, the Cherokees were 
assured in return for their alliance with the English a trade. 
If Carolina could not provide the trade, Virginia would. Car- 
olina now denied the Cherokees a trade but at the same time 
supplied ammunition to the Creek enemies of the Cherokees 
who were friends of the French. This violated the Treaty of 
1730. It was now Virginia's duty to open up a trade for the 
Carolinas. 58 President Burrell of the Virginia Council told 
the Little Carpenter that the government of Virginia could 
not of itself enter the trade; that the best he could do would 
be to advise private traders to enter the Cherokee trade. 59 
With this hardly satisfactory answer the Little Carpenter and 
his delegation set out in late August to return home. 

The most valuable fruits of the Virginia mission came from 
South Carolina. When Glen read newspaper reports of the 
Virginia mission, he was alarmed and indignant. Not only 
had Chotte attempted to circumvent Carolina coercion, they 
had invited a competition into the trade. Glen composed a 
sharp letter to the Virginia council. With a copious serving 
of Cherokee history, the Carolina governor pointed out 
that in even suggesting that Virginians could enter the Cher- 
okee trade, Burrell had exceeded his authority; for the treaty 
of 1730 had designated the Governor of Carolina agent of 
the Crown in Cherokee matters. The Little Carpenter, he 
wrote, was a person of no standing and a fugitive from Car- 
olina justice. Carolina would have to lay the whole matter 
before the Crown and meanwhile unless the Virginians even 
ceased to think of a Cherokee trade, Carolina would seize 
any Virginians entering Cherokee country. 60 Impressed, Bur- 

57 South Carolina Council Journal, September 2, 1751, 292. 

58 Virginia Gazette, Williamsburg, Virginia (microfilm), August 16, 1751; 
South Carolina Council Journal, September 11, 1751, 297-298. 

69 South Carolina Council Journal, September 11, 1751, 297-298. 
60 South Carolina Council Journal, September 11, 1751, 302-303. 

372 The North Carolina Historical Review 

rell published a notice that the Cherokee visitors were frauds 
and a warning to Virginia traders to keep out of the Chero- 
kee country. 61 Nevertheless, the threat of Virginia competi- 
tion had a good deal to do with the Carolina disposition to 
settle its Cherokee troubles peacefully and to make readjust- 
ments in the trade. 

On September 22, the return of Osteneco from Charlestown 
with Beamer and Goudy brought joy to Keowee. An Indian 
had already come up from the settlements with news that the 
rumored attack would not occur. This had halted the exodus 
of the Lower people to remote regions except for Eustanally. 
Some of the Eustanallys had committed fresh depredations 
in Carolina and upon the report of approaching chastisement 
the whole town fled and settled permanently a hundred miles 
away. 62 Beamer and Osteneco also gave the lie to the horrid 
story. Though sick when he came to Keowee, Osteneco at- 
tended the council called to hear Glen's peace message. He 
gave a great talk on behalf of Carolina, "the best talk," said 
Beamer, "I ever heard given by an Indian." 63 This and the 
prospect of the trade being reopened aroused a surge of pro- 
English feeling. The Lower Towns headmen made ready to 
go to Charlestown. 

The new conference was, however, slow to materialize. As 
soon as he had recovered Osteneco had gone toward great 
Tellico through the Middle Settlements talking for the Eng- 
lish in every town. 64 As a result the Middle Towns also pre- 
pared to go to Charlestown. But the Overhills— in particu- 
lar Chotte, Tanase, and Settico— refused. They had their 
own views of what the nation needed. They had heard that 
French traders would come to them in the spring. 65 They 
had not yet heard from the Little Carpenter concerning a 
Virginia trade. If these things developed, they would not 
need Carolina. To Old Hop and his councillors the time 
may have seemed ripe for uniting the nation directly under 

61 South Carolina Council Journal, November 22, 1751, 427. 

62 Indian Books of South Carolina, II, 146. 

63 Indian Books of South Carolina, II, 146. 

64 Indian Books of South Carolina, III, 2. 

65 South Carolina Council Journal, November 19, 1751, 432; November 20, 
1751, 414. 

The Unpleasantness at Stecoe 373 

their authority and thus ending the decentralization which 
Carolina exploited. They urged the discontented Lower peo- 
ple to come Over-the-Hills and join them. 66 When they heard 
the call to come down and make peace with Carolina, they 
found reason for delay. The Raven of Hiwassee, the Young 
Emperor, and the Tellicoes finally started without them. 

The Charlestown-bound headmen had been but a few days 
gone when the Little Carpenter, almost as if informed that 
the coast was clear arrived in Chotte. But he did not stay 
long, any longer than was needed to report the dubious suc- 
cess of his Virginia overture and to gather a band to go with 
him toward the Ohio. He said he would find a trade, possibly 
with Croghan's outfit, trading between the Ohio and the 
lakes, or else go to England to get it. 67 He knew the reality of 
his people's need for trade goods and dedicated himself to 
fulfilling it, a determination which seems to have been his 
fundamental policy for the next ten years. Considering Glen's 
attitude toward him at this time, he showed wisdom in travel- 
ing for a while in far places. 

When the conference in Charlestown opened on Novem- 
ber 13, 1751, 160 Cherokees were present. Save for Chotte, 
nativist and unwilling to truckle to Carolina, all regions of the 
nation were represented. Led by Skiagunsta of Keowee and 
the Good Warrior of Estatoe, the Lower Towns came in 
greater force than since 1745. From the Hiwassee-Tellico 
group came the Great Raven and his son, Moitoi of Hiwassee, 
and Old Caesar of Chatuge. The Young Emperor had had 
to turn back because of illness. The Middle and Out Towns 
vitally concerned in the Stecoe matter had a strong delegation 
led by Kittagusta, Prince of Joree. 

Despite the prominence and friendliness of the visitors, Glen 
was disappointed. They had not brought one of the offenders 
he had demanded. Such a surrender in the face of the covert 
bitterness in the nation was more than even they could man- 
age. Andrew White, wanted in the Oconees affair, was said 
to be out at war against the Creeks. The six anti-English head- 
men of Kittuwa, Connutory, and Stecoe followed far away 

68 South Carolina Council Journal, November 29, 1751, 421. 
67 South Carolina Council Journal, March 24, 1751, 104-105. 

374 The North Carolina Historical Review 

game trials. 68 Carolina justice would have to be patient— so 
patient indeed, that the offenses might be forgotten. 

Under the circumstance Glen put on his boldest face and 
read the Cherokees a violent lecture. He charged them with 
treaty breaking, sundry crimes and many misdemeanors and 
dwelt ominously on how necessary the English trade was to 
the nation. Without the English he declared, they would be 
forced to use "bad bows and wretched arrows headed with 
bills of birds and knives of split cane and hatchets of stone." 69 

The abashed Cherokees replied meekly. The Raven of Hi- 
wassee avowed he was ready to weep at the crimes committed 
in the nation; but that not all Cherokees were bad; his town 
was good; he had done everything he could in the bad time 
to help the English. The headmen of Stecoe and Tuckaseigie 
disclaimed responsibility for the trouble in the Out Towns. 
They had been away at the time; it would not have happened 
had they been at home. Skiagunsta of Keowee, under Glen's 
prodding recounted the fears his people had had in the spring 
and described how cautious his warriors had been at the 
Oconees and how accidental the killing of the whites had 
been. He admitted helplessness in preventing the Northwards 
coming into his towns. He had lectured them, he said, about 
going into the white man's country and against the Catawbas. 
They had promised to behave; but they did not keep their 
promises. It was not his fault, he said, that they came into 
the nation. Chotte had made the peace with the Northwards. 
The governor could write to the Emperor or the Chotte head- 
men and tell them to stop the intruders. He could even send 
to the headman of the Northwards now at chotte and tell him 
to go home. If the English would build a fort in the nation, 
that would certainly stop the marauders. 70 

The conference lasted for several days. The governor con- 
sulted the assembled traders, held private talks with various 
headmen, and learned much about the affairs of the nation. 
Beamer testified that a fort was needed to halt Northward 
incursions. Bunning told of French efforts to detach the 

68 South Carolina Council Journal, November 15, 1751, 402-403. 

69 South Carolina Council Journal, November 13, 1751, 389. 

70 South Carolina Council Journal, November 15, 1751, 403. 

The Unpleasantness at Stecoe 375 

Cherokees from the English; of the lawlessness of the trad- 
ers; of his fear that Virginia traders would come in force to 
the nation the next summer; and emphasised that a Carolina 
fort was not only desirable but also necessary. 71 

With this testimony in mind Glen sent a special message to 
his Assembly asking that a fort be built right away. He gave 
his attention to making a new treaty with the Cherokees and 
to a new regulation of the trade. 

The treaty which the Cherokees signed on November 29, 
1751, reduced to four the Carolina demands for the dis- 
orders. 72 The principal offender in the Oconees matter, An- 
drew White, was to be given up; Bernard Hughes's loss of 
468 deerskins was to be made good; the Little Carpenter 
was to present himself in person at Charlestown; and the 
Cherokees were to prevent the Northwards from going down 
to the white settlements and were not to supply them with 
ammunition. When the Indians had reimbursed Hughes, 
Carolina would make good the Toogaloos loss of 330 deer- 
skins. The traders would return to the nation immediately. 
Carolina would attempt to get a peace for the Cherokees with 
the Creeks. A new regulation of the trade was to be made, 
guaranteeing fairer prices, better measures, and reduced 
pressure in the matter of debts. 73 

The Treaty of 1751 was the last great triumph of Hiwassee- 
Tellico. Carolina's failure to halt the Creek war, the death of 
the Great Raven, the withdrawal of Goudy from the trade 
at Tellico, and the formal entry of Virginia into Cherokee 
diplomacy brought about in a short time the ascendency of 
Chotte— which is a story in itself. 

71 South Carolina Council Journal, November 19, 1751, 432. 

72 South Carolina Council Journal, November 26, 1751, 451-453. 

73 South Carolina Council Journal, December 3, 1751, 512. 


By Noble E. Cunningham, Jr. 

The government which John Quincy Adams found when he 
moved into the White House in 1825 was a much bigger 
government than his father had left; and Nathaniel Macon, 
who had represented North Carolina in Congress since 1791, 
was far from happy with it. He regretted that everything had 
grown, just like the number of doorkeepers of the houses of 
Congress. "Formerly two men were sufficient for doorkeeper, 
etc. for the two houses," Macon complained, "but now there 
is a regiment." 1 As he recalled the time, during the presidency 
of John Adams, when the Kentucky and Virginia Resolutions 
had been passed, he asked: "If there was reason to be alarmed 
at the growing power of the General Government [then], 
how much more has taken place since? Congress now stopped 
almost at nothing, which it deemed expedient to be done, and 
the Constitution was construed to give power for any grand 
scheme." 2 To Macon, it was a dangerous development. "Do 
a little now, and a little then, and, by and by, they would 
render this government as powerful and unlimited as the 
British Government was," Macon told his colleagues in the 
Senate in 1825; 3 and at the next session, he declared that "he 
did not like to go on in this way— the Government was con- 
stantly gaining power by little bits. A wagon road was made 
under a treaty with an Indian tribe, twenty odd years ago; 
and now it becomes a great national object, to be kept up by 
large appropriations. We thus go on by degrees, step by step, 
until we get almost unlimited power." 4 

It was not unusual that Macon should be protesting against 
the course of public affairs; he was a man not often with the 

1 Congressional Debates, 19th Congress, 2nd Session (February 16, 1827), 

2 Congressional Debates, 18th Congress, 2nd Session (February 24, 1825), 
I, 679-680. 

3 Congressional Debates, 18th Congress, 2nd Session (February 24, 1825), 
I, 679-680. 

4 Congressional Debates, 19th Congress, 1st Session (February 14, 1826), 

[ 376 ] 

Nathaniel Macon 377 

trend of times. In his thirty-seven years of congressional life, 
he left the vivid impression that "no ten members gave so 
many negative votes," 5 and one of his colleagues is reported 
to have said that if Macon should happen to be drowned, he 
should look for his body up the stream instead of floating with 
the current. 6 It was not strange either that Macon should 
protest against the increasing power of the national govern- 
ment. He had long been watchful of the rights of the states, 7 
and had always demanded a strict construction of the Con- 
stitution. His close attachment to the soil and to the agrarian 
ideal of the independent life of a rural society had dictated 
his constant concern for simplicity and frugality in govern- 
ment. 8 Yet the protests that Macon made against national con- 
solidation in the years after the end of the War of 1812 
have peculiar significance, not so much because of their 
influence at the time but in view of the subsequent course 
of southern history. 

Although Macon was not alone when he objected to the 
trend of public affairs during the politically quiet years of 
the "era of good feeling," there were not many men who pub- 
licly shared his sentiments. There were some, however, and 
like Macon they were influential men. In Virginia there were 
John Randolph of Roanoke, Judge Spencer Roane, and 
John Taylor of Caroline; there were William H. Crawford of 
Georgia, and Charles Tait and Boiling Hall of Alabama. 9 
These men were spokesmen from southern states, and their 
protest was largely a southern protest; but they did not speak 
for the South as a whole, nor even for a party in the South. 

6 Charles J. Ingersoll, Historical Sketch of the Second War Between the 
United States of America and Great Britain (Philadelphia, 1845-49), I, 
212. Hereafter cited as Ingersoll, Historical Sketch. 

8 Ingersoll, Historical Sketch, I, 209. 

7 See for example Macon's speech against the sedition law, July 10, 1798, 
Annals of Congress, 5th Congress, 2nd Session, 2151; also his speech on 
South Carolina and the slave trade, February 13, 1804, Annals of Congress, 
8th Congress, 1st Session, 98. 

8 "I believe the less legislation the better," Macon told the House of Repre- 
sentatives in 1806. Annals of Congress, 9th Congress, 1st Session (January 
23, 1806), 386. To the Secretary of the Treasury, William H. Crawford, he 
wrote in 1817: ". . . our strength is in proportion to the smallness of our 
taxes, encumber us with debt, and we are ruined." Macon to Crawford, 
October 13, 1817, William H. Crawford Papers, Duke University Library. 

9 See Charles S. Sydnor, The Development of Southern Sectionalism 1819- 
1848, A History of the South, volume V (Baton Rouge, 1948), 135. 

378 The North Carolina Historical Review 

They were men who were considered by younger statesmen 
of the day in much of the South, as elsewhere, to be old-fash- 
ioned and behind the times, and they were called "Old 
Republicans." In 1823 Macon himself admitted: "My opinions 
are become too old fashioned for the present time; they are 
out of fashion and called, the old school." 10 It is of this group 
of Old Republicans that Macon is representative. v 

As the course of events modified in practice the principles 
that Jefferson had proclaimed in assuming office in 1801, 
few of Jefferson's old followers were more vigorous in their 
protest or more firm in their refusal to accept changes than 
was Macon. Following the War of 1812, when the cry was 
raised for protection for the infant manufacturing enterprises 
that the embargo and the war had helped to get started, 
Macon stood his ground. When there was a demand for re- 
viving the national bank, which had been allowed to die just 
when it was needed most, Macon opposed it; and the great 
clamor for internal improvements met with his bitterest dis- 
sent. He strongly opposed the schemes of such young Repub- 
lican leaders as Henry Clay and John C. Calhoun; and when 
President Madison went so far as to sign the bill to establish 
the Second Bank of the United States and to advocate such 
measures as the building of roads and canals and a protective 
tariff, 11 Macon was bitterly critical of his old friend. "Who 
could have supposed when Mr. Jefferson went out of office 
that his principles and the principles which brought him into 
it, would so soon become unfashionable," he asked, "and that 
Mr. Madison, the champion against banks, should have signed 
an act to establish one, containing rather worse principles, 
than the one he opposed as unconstitutional. . . ," 12 Even 
after Madison had vetoed Calhoun's bonus bill for internal 
improvements, Macon still could not forgive Madison for 
approving the bank. He explained to Jefferson: "After it was 
known that President Madison, one of our best and most 

10 Macon to Bartlett Yancey, December 12, 1823, Kemp P. Battle, ed., 
"Letters of Nathaniel Macon," James Sprunt Historical Monographs, 
(1900), II, 68. Hereafter cited as Battle, "Letters of Nathaniel Macon." 

11 See Madison's message to Congress, December, 1815, Annals of Congress, 
14th Congress, 1st Session, 15-17. 

12 Macon to Bartlett Yancey, March 8, 1818, Battle, "Letters of Nathaniel 
Macon," II, 49. 

Nathaniel Macon 379 

worthy men, would sign the act, to establish the expensive 
bank of the U. S.; all who were tired of the principles which 
put them into power; immediately laid them aside, and went 
farther into constructive and implied powers, than had been 
done at any time before." 13 

In 1824 Macon wrote dejectedly to Albert Gallatin who had 
served as Jefferson's Secretary of the Treasury while Macon 
was Speaker of the House: "There are not, I imagine, five 
members of Congress who entertain the opinions which those 
did who brought Mr. Jefferson into power, and they are yet 
mine." 14 In a letter to Jefferson, Macon explained specifically 
the reasons for his opposition. "The acts for the banks of the 
United States, the tariE and internal improvements," he 
wrote, "seem to have put an end to legislating on the old 
republican principles and to prove, that under any party 
name, unconstitutional measures may be adopted. . . . The 
acts above mentioned and such as may be expected to follow 
tend I fear, to make Congress rather bargainers and traders 
than sound and fair legislators; to look forward, cannot be 
pleasing, especially to those who have been opposed to con- 
structive & implied powers in the federal government." 15 
Jefferson, in the last days of his life, applauded Macon's fight 
against consolidation, writing to his old friend: "I am par- 
ticularly happy to perceive that you retain health and spirits 
still manfully to maintain our good old principle of cherish- 
ing and fortifying the rights and authorities of the people in 
opposition to those who fear them, who wish to take all power 
from them, and to transfer all to Washington." 16 

It was the constitutional issue that Macon stressed in 
regard to national consolidation; he had always demanded 
a rigid respect for the Constitution. But as the trend toward 
increasing the power of the federal government continued, 
Macon revealed a very strong motive behind his concern 

13 Macon to Jefferson, October 20, 1821, William E. Dodd, ed., "Macon 
Papers," The John P. Branch Historical Papers of Rondol-ph-Macon College, 
III (1909), 79. Hereafter cited as Dodd, "Macon Papers." 

14 Macon to Gallatin, February 13, 1824, Henry Adams, The Life of Albert 
Gallatin (Philadelphia, 1880), 596. 

15 Macon to Jefferson, May 21, 1824, Dodd, "Macon Papers," III, 83-84. 
"Jefferson to Macon, February 21, 1826, Paul Leicester Ford, ed., The 
Writings of Thomas Jefferson (New York, 1892-99), X, 378. 

380 The North Carolina Historical Review 

for strict construction. This was the fear that the ever-broad- 
ening powers of Congress would eventually lead that body to 
legislate on the subject of slavery. As early as 1818, Macon 
disclosed this apprehension in a letter to a close friend, a 
letter cautioning, "I have written very freely to you, and it 
is intended for you alone." Wrote Macon: "I must ask you 
to examine the constitution of the U. S. . . . and then tell me 
if Congress can establish banks, make roads and canals, 
whether they cannot free all the Slaves in the U. S." It might 
be some time before Congress attempted such legislation, 
but "We have abolition-colonizing bible and peace societies, 
. . . and if the general government shall continue to stretch 
their powers, these societies will undoubtedly push them to 
try the question of emancipation." He believed that "under a 
fair and honest construction of the constitution the negro 
property is safe and secure," but if the doctrine of implied 
powers were carried too far the slave states would be in 
grave danger. "The states having no slaves may not feel as 
strongly as the states having slaves about stretching the con- 
stitution," he said, "because no such interest is to be touched 
by it." 17 When his friend's reply did not confirm his own 
opinions, Macon wrote once more urging: "Examine again, 
the constitution of the U. S. and you will perceive your error. 
If Congress can make canals they can with more propriety 
emancipate. . . . Let not love of improvement, or a thirst 
for glory blind that sober discretion and sound sense, with 
which the Lord has blest you . . . your error in this, will injure 
if not destroy our beloved mother N. Carolina and all the 
South country." 18 

Apparently Macon had long harbored in his mind this 
concern for the security of slavery. In 1825 he revealed that 
"A debate about thirty years past in the H. of R. compelled 
me to believe that there were some people, who then thought, 
that Congress might legislate on the condition of slaves, & no 
circumstance has taken place since to induce a change of 
that belief. The question with us, is not an original question 

17 Macon to Bartlett Yancey, March 8, 1818, Battle, "Letters of Nathaniel 
Macon," II, 48-49. 

18 Macon to Bartlett Yancey, April 15, 1818, Battle, "Letters of Nathaniel 
Macon," II, 47. 

Nathaniel Macon 381 

of slavery or not slavery; but what is the power of the fed- 
eral Government." 19 

Macon never openly admitted on the floor of Congress his 
fear concerning slavery, though John Randolph did not hesi- 
tate to do so; 20 but he circulated it among his friends in the 
South. He warned younger Southern leaders, including Cal- 
houn, 21 who had not yet apprehended the threat which Macon 
saw to Southern institutions; he helped to make familiar to 
a younger generation the doctrines of strict construction. 
Again and again he warned: "If Congress can make canals 
and banks it is as omnipotent as the British Parliament." 22 "I 
never think of these claims of power, which appear to me, 
not to be granted," he wrote, "but I shudder for the states, 
whose population is not of the same character, to be plain I 
mean the states where slavery exists." 23 

Macon was a slaveholder from a slaveholding state; 24 he 
never shared Jefferson's views on emancipation. He was not 
ashamed to remind the House of Representatives that "the 
people in the Southern States . . . are agricultural people, 
and if you please a slaveholding people"; 25 and he was will- 

19 Macon to Bartlett Yancey, December 8, 1825, Battle, "Letters of 
Nathaniel Macon," II, 77-78. References to earlier debate is probably to that 
on a memorial of the Quakers in 1797, protesting that slaves set free in 
North Carolina by their society had been returned to slavery. See Annals of 
Congress, 5th Congress, 2nd Session (November 30, 1797), 661. 

20 Speaking against internal improvements in 1824, Randolph said : "If 
Congress possess the power to do what is proposed by this bill, they can not 
only enact a sedition law, — for there is precedent, — but they may emancipate 
every slave in the United States." See speech in House of Representatives, 
January 31, 1824, quoted in Henry Adams, John Randolph (Boston, 1898), 

21 Macon to Bartlett Yancey, December 26, 1824, Battle, "Letters of 
Nathaniel Macon," II, 72. 

22 Macon to Bartlett Yancey, January 31, 1824, Nathaniel Macon Papers, 
University of North Carolina Library. 

23 Macon to Bartlett Yancey, December 8, 1825, Battle, "Letters of 
Nathaniel Macon," II, 76. 

24 In 1784, Macon as a young man of twenty-six owned seven slaves. A 
List of Taxable Property in Warren County for the Year 1784, North 
Carolina Department of Archives and History. In the census of 1790, he 
was listed as the owner of twenty slaves. Walter Clark, ed., The State 
Records of North Carolina (Goldsboro, 1895-1907), XXVI, 1198. When 
Macon died in 1837, he owned seventy-seven slaves. An Inventory of the 
Estate of Nathaniel Macon, deed returned by his executor W. N. Edwards, 
November Session, 1837, MS., Record of Wills, vol. 36, 222-233, Warren 
County Records, Warren County Courthouse, Warrenton, North Carolina. 

25 Annals of Congress, 11th Congress, 1st Session (December 22, 1809), 

382 The North Carolina Historical Review 

ing to defend the institution of slavery when occasion arose. 
During the debate on the restriction of slavery in Missouri 
in 1820, when most southern congressmen refused to debate 
the evils of slavery as beside the point, Macon unhesitantly 
arose to defend, with great warmth, the system of the South. 26 
He also observed that "A clause in the Declaration of Inde- 
pendence had been read, declaring that 'all men are created 
equal': follow that sentiment and does it not lead to universal 
emancipation? If it will justify putting an end to slavery in 
Missouri, will it not justify it in the old states." 27 

Macon had early been a champion of the South. In 1798 
during a spirited debate in Congress on the question of its 
power to regulate the salaries of foreign ministers, Macon 
had defended the South in a speech worthy of a later genera- 
tion of ardent southerners when he told the House: 

It was said that the gentleman from Virginia and those who 
supported the amendment wished to violate the Constitution, 
and overthrow the government. This charge was principally 
made against members of the Southern States, than in which, 
he would venture to say, the laws of the United States had no 
where been better executed ; for, although their members in that 
House had generally been in a minority, no instance of opposi- 
tion to the laws had ever occurred. ... It was clear, if any part 
of the country had a right to complain, it would have been the 
Southern States, as many of the laws had borne hardly upon 
them, and none of them afforded them any advantage. 28 

The agrarian interests of the South had loomed foremost 
in Macon's mind, as he had opposed the tariff. Southerners, 
he had said, wanted "no protecting duties to encourage or 
aid them to make their homespun." 29 As the years passed, 
Macon had become convinced that the South was being mis- 
treated, and he had called for unity among its people. In 1821 
he had tried to show how "unanimity in the south" in support 
of one candidate for president would give great weight to 

28 Annals of Congress, 16th Congress, 1st Session (January 20, 1820), 219- 

27 Annals of Congress, 16th Congress, 1st Session (January 20, 1820), 225. 

28 Annals of Congress, 5th Congress, 2nd Session (February 28, 1798), 

29 Annals of Congress, 11th Congress, 1st Session (December 22, 1809), 867. 

Nathaniel Macon 383 

that person, because no other section of the nation was yet 
united. He had urged the people, "especially those of the 
South," desirous of economy in government to examine close- 
ly the presidential candidates. "I have said especially of the 
South," Macon wrote, "because nearly all the federal taxes 
collected there are paid for the interest of the public debt, or 

laid out to the North of the James River " 30 But the South 

had not always followed Macon; regretfully he had admitted 
that "this manufacturing scheme was fixed on us, by the 
strong aid of the South." 31 

By 1824, however, most Southern spokesmen were in agree- 
ment with Macon on the subject of the tariff, 32 and his "Old 
Republican" ideas were becoming more attractive in the 
South. But if men listened now to the aging Senator, they 
must not have mistaken the mounting bitterness in his 
thoughts as he saw his beloved South losing ground. "The 
burthens of the Government," he said in 1826, "have and will 
continue to fall most heavy on the cultivators of cotton and 
tobacco"; 33 and during the debate on the tariff of 1828 he 
lamented: "The Southern states must, if they are not now 
ruined, be shortly ruined." 34 

Before long some were recalling Macon's earlier warnings. 
In 1833 Boiling Hall of Alabama wrote to Macon: "The 
signs of the times are indeed portentous; by the events which 
have taken place, I am often reminded of your predictions 
of the encroachment of the general, on the State Governments 
. . . for years you have viewed the approach of the present 
crisis." 35 But such words were little comfort to Macon, who 
could only recall that his early protests against national con- 

30 Macon to Bartlett Yancey, December 12, 1821, Battle, "Letters of 
Nathaniel Macon," II, 59. 

31 Macon to Bartlett Yancey, April 19, 1820, Battle, "Letters of Nathaniel 
Macon," II, 54. 

32 The southern vote on the tariff of 1824 in the House of Representatives 
was three for the bill, sixty-four against ; in the Senate there were two for 
the bill (both from Tennessee) and fourteen against it. See Edward Stan- 
wood, American Tariff Controversies in the Nineteenth Century (Boston, 
1904), I, 239. 

33 Macon to Bartlett Yancey, December 24, 1826, Battle, "Letters of 
Nathaniel Macon," II, 91. 

34 Macon to Weldon N. Edwards, May 20, 1828, Macon Papers, North Caro- 
lina Department of Archives and History. 

35 Boiling Hall to Macon, February 22, 1833, Macon Papers, Duke Univer- 
sity Library. 

384 The North Carolina Historical Review 

solidation had been largely ignored. Macon's protests and 
those of other Old Republicans— their jealous defense of "Old 
Republican principles"— however, had not been without in- 
fluence. They had helped to keep alive the doctrines of state 
rights and strict construction, and to make familiar in the 
South a political language that a later generation was to find 
well-suited to its needs. 



By George D. Harmon 

James A. Peifer of Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, was not an 
educated man, but he was, nevertheless, a shrewd observer. 
He served in the Union Army throughout the entire period 
of the War between the States. Furthermore, he wrote to his 
sister, Mary, fairly regularly, imparting to her his observa- 
tions and experiences. 1 

Almost nothing is known of James A. Peifer's early life 
except that he loved travel and adventure. At the age of 
twenty he left Bethlehem to seek his fortune in New York. 
He lived in that great metropolis for only six months, return- 
ing to Bethlehem because he "was not fortunate enough to 
secure a situation for the winter" and his mother did not 
want him to go South. 2 The sojourn in glamorous New York 
made young Peifer extremely dissatisfied with Bethlehem. 
He wrote his sister, Mary, in Philadelphia that he could no 
longer live happily "up here [Bethlehem] now. It is so very 
dull and dreary — no excitement of any kind." 3 He added 
that he would probably leave the place of his birth by Christ- 
mas for other parts. 

Whether James Peifer made good his threat to visit other 
places is unknown, but at any rate he was in the Moravian 
village in early 1861. On February 21 of that year he left 
Bethlehem for Harrisburg with the Washington Grays, a 
local National Guard unit, to participate in the grand mili- 
tary parade to be given in the honor of President-elect Abra- 

1 Unfortunately only fifty per cent of the letters have been preserved or 
these are all that are known to me. The letters which I used are in the 
possession of Mrs. Clarence A. Conrad, 1819 Richmond Avenue, Bethlehem, 
Pa., to whom I am deeply indebted. According to her recollection there were 
two members of the family who divided the letters equally between them; 
therefore, Mrs. Conrad only inherited half of them. The others apparently 
have been destroyed. 

2 James A. Peifer to his sister Mary in Philadelphia, November 11, 1859. 
James Peifer is hereafter referred to as Peifer. 

3 Peifer to his sister Mary in Philadelphia, November 11, 1859. I have 
occasionally changed the spelling and punctuation in the quotations, but I 
have in no way changed the words or substance of the letters. 

[ 385 ] 

386 The North Carolina Historical Review 

ham Lincoln on Washington's birthday. Between fifty and 
sixty companies paraded through the city of Harrisburg "and 
then stopped at the depot to escort Old Abe to his place of 
destination " The Washington Grays returned from Harris- 
burg on February 23 at six-thirty in the morning, and upon 
arriving in Bethlehem at nine o'clock in the evening they 
were met by the town band and many citizens who escorted 
them home. 

Fort Sumter was fired upon on April 12. Two days later 
Lincoln issued a proclamation calling upon the governors 
of all loyal states for 75,000 volunteers to serve for three 
months. James A. Peifer volunteered almost immediately 
upon learning of Lincoln's call for troops. He left Bethlehem 
for Harrisburg on Friday, April 19, 1861, with a company of 
eighty-five volunteers chiefly from Bethlehem, but command- 
ed by James Self ridge and Thomas Lynn of Hellertown. 

Peifer's enthusiastic response to the call of his county was 
shared by thousands throughout the North. His brother, Wil- 
liam C. Peifer, wrote on April 18, 1861, that "intense excite- 
ment pervades the people" of Bethlehem, who are "unani- 
mous for the Union." Already there had been held in the 
town, he said, several public meetings at which much patrio- 
tic enthusiasm was displayed. A local committee announced 
on the third day after Lincoln's call for volunteers that the 
people of Bethlehem had subscribed $3,000 for the purpose 
of securing the needed supplies which the State had failed 
to furnish the volunteers and "of assisting the needy families 
which they left behind." 4 

It required four hours for the volunteer company from 
Bethlehem to reach Harrisburg. Soon after their arrival at 
the State Capital at one o'clock in the afternoon they were 
served a good dinner at the Jones House. Immediately after 
enjoying the last morsel, they were marched to the Fair 
Grounds where they were issued essential equipment, includ- 
ing belts, muskets, and blankets. They now pitched their 
tents, partook of a "scanty meal consisting of a few potatoes, 
a loaf of bread and about a pound of meat for four, as [they] 

* William C. Peifer to his sister Mary in Philadelphia, April 18, 1861. 

Experiences of James A. Peifer 387 

were divided in four's in a tent/' The exhausted volunteers 
now went to bed to enjoy much needed repose, but they could 
not rest because they were "unaccustomed to this style of 

The next morning, Saturday, April 20, at five o'clock, James 
A. Peifer and the other eighty-four tired but patriotic volun- 
teers from Bethlehem were aroused "by the beat of the drum 
for a half hour drill" before breakfast. At nine o'clock there 
was another drill of one hour. Afterwards the enlisted men 
cooked their own dinner, which was followed immediately 
by another drill. At three o'clock in the afternoon they were 
sworn into the service of their country by taking an oath to 
"stand by the Constitution and the Union." Now, duly induct- 
ed into the Army of the United States, they were placed in 
designated regiments. The Bethlehem boys were extremely 
proud of being assigned to the First Regiment. "As good luck 
would have it," wrote Peifer, "we are designated as Comp. A. 
lrst Regiment. Think of that! A company from the little Mo- 
ravian town of Bethlehem receiving the honour of being the 
First Company of the 1st Regiment. Ahem. I feel so good. It 
makes us feel proud. . . ." 5 

At the conclusion of these ceremonies, the inductees pro- 
ceeded to their camp where they again prepared their own 
supper. Having had practically no sleep the previous night 
and thinking that they had just concluded a very busy day, 
they were getting ready for bed about eight o'clock when 
orders were received for the First, Second, and Third Regi- 
ments to start immediately for Baltimore. Upon the receipt 
of this startling news, they "packed up their belongings in 
a hurry" and proceeded at once to the depot. The train, 
with approximately three thousand men placed in forty-two 
cars, left Harrisburg about eleven o'clock Saturday night on 
April 20 and arrived "Sunday forenoon April 21st in the State 
of Maryland at a one horse place called Cockeysville, about 
15 miles from Baltimore." 6 The camp was located about one 
half mile from the village. 

5 James A. Peifer to his sister Mary, May 6, 1861, from Camp Scott. 
Apparently his brother William accompanied him to Harrisburg. 
a Peifer to his sister Mary, May 6, 1861, from Camp Scott. 

388 The North Carolina Historical Review 

Although tired and foodless since eight o'clock Saturday 
evening, the men were forced to drill during the remainder 
of the morning. As soon as drill was over the soldiers headed 
for town, composed of one store, one hotel, and one or two 
houses, to buy some food. The record does not reveal what 
they had to eat, but the little village was probably unprepared 
to feed adequately such a large number of hungry soldiers. 
Peifer does reveal, however, that the scorching heat caused 
them nearly to perish of thirst and that "some of the men 
paid as high as seventy-five cents for a pint of water which 
was very muddy out of a small creek where we washed our- 
selves at one place and drank the water out of the other." 7 

As the members of Company A of the First Regiment had 
had no sleep or real rest since they had left Bethlehem on 
April 19, they "lay down on the bare ground" and covered 
themselves with blankets at twilight Sunday evening, April 
21. No bed had probably ever felt more comfortable, but 
the men had hardly lain down, certainly had not had time 
to get a minute's sleep, when they were "called to arms and 
assured that 10,000 Baltimore Secessions were upon us. 
We immediately posted our sentinels. . . . After being called 
to arms about a dozen times [during the night] we were told 
that we would not be attacked that night, but we did not 
sleep any more. . . . Many a prayer was offered that night of 
men that perhaps never prayed before. We heard the horse- 
men of the enemy and we heard the distant drums and the 
mob cheering Jeff. Davis very often. Had we been attacked 
they could have slaughtered us all as we had no ammuni- 
tion." 8 

By Friday, May 3, the First Regiment was in Camp Scott, 
near York, Pennsylvania. The day was very cold, rainy, and 
snowy, which caused considerable discomfort. The weather 
did not improve any during the night, for the soldiers woke 
up on Saturday morning "wet to the skin" and everything in 
the camp had been flooded. As no dry straw could be secured, 
it was decided to leave camp in search of dryer quarters else- 
where. A kind Moravian minister by the name of Hagen 

7 Peifer to his sister Mary, May 6, 1861, from Camp Scott. 

8 Peifer to his sister Mary, May 6, 1861, from Camp Scott. 

Experiences of James A. Peifer 389 

offered them quarters in his church, which they naturally 
accepted. They moved in with their wet clothes and equip- 
ment and "were soon snugly quartered in the house of God. 
. . . Brother and Sister Hagen provide us with coffee and 
cakes. I must say we have never met a more generous sect 
of people as we have here. They are willing ... to do any- 
thing for the poor Soldiers. . . . We are still [May 6] quarter- 
ed in the church and will not return to camp as long as the 
weather is so unfavorable, and we are all very glad of it as 
we have excellent quarters here." 9 

Despite these many difficulties and discouragements, Peifer 
proudly wrote: 

I can assure you that I am very thankful that I am able-bodied 
and healthy so that I can aid in so great a cause as [to] defend 
the stars and stripes that waves so proudly over the land of the 
free and the brave. And long may it wave still, as it was purchas- 
ed with great price. . . . Therefore I deem it the duty of every 
free and true man to defend it as long as he has the power to do 
it, and not allow this glorious banner to be trampled upon by 
these vile and vicious traitors who are seeking to destroy this 
glorious Liberty which we have enjoyed. 10 

Before he had really engaged in gunfire, James A. Peifer's 
enlistment for ninety days expired in the summer of 1861. 
Though he did not wish to leave his regiment, he had promis- 
ed his immediate family that he would not re-enlist; and re- 
luctantly he returned to his native city. But his patriotism 
would not let him keep his pledge. On September 13, 1861, 
he again left Bethlehem for Harrisburg with some friends 
to re-enlist, this time not for ninety days but for the duration 
of the war "or for a term not exceeding three years ... in 
the 46th Regiment." 

Peifer thus described the generosity of Uncle Sam in is- 
suing supplies to the inductees: 

We then proceeded [after being inducted into the service] to 
the commissaries and received shoes, two pair of woolen stock- 
ings, underclothes, canteen, knapsack, and the most useful article, 

9 Peifer to his sister Mary, May 6, 1861, from Camp Scott. 

10 Peifer to his sister Mary, May 6, 1861, from Camp Scott. 

390 The North Carolina Historical Review 

a blanket . . . and a blouse, but overcoats we did not receive and 
have none today [October 7, 1861]. 

On Monday, September 16, they received their marching 
orders, so they struck their tents and packed their knapsacks 
to move immediately. At four o'clock in the afternoon they 
bid farewell to Camp Curtin. They marched to the arsenal 
"where [they] received arms instead of rifles [or] . . . muskets, 
called Blunder-busses," scornfully by the men. After Governor 
Curtin addressed the Regiment, they boarded a train for 
Washington. Upon reaching that city the next day about nine 
o'clock in the evening, they proceeded to a place called the 
Soldier's Retreat, where they "received coffee and bread and 
beef tongue. . . . Our Colonel Knipe waited on us like a fa- 
ther and did not eat until the men were all finished." u After 
all had been fully refreshed, they marched out Pennsylvania 
Avenue for about a mile where quarters were secured in a 
large four-story building. It was two o'clock in the morning 
before the men were able to stretch out on the floor for a 
good night's rest. 

After eating breakfast at the Soldier's Retreat, they march- 
ed past the White House, the Treasury Building, and on 
through the city into the country. About four o'clock in the 
afternoon they pitched their tents at Kalaramo Heights where 
they remained for two days. 

On Saturday, September 21, beginning at four o'clock in 
the afternoon, the Regiment marched seventeen miles, in 
heavy rain, stopping two hours after mid-night near Rock- 
ville. Peifer said that "John Fetter and myself laid on a table, 
but I could not sleep as all my bones hurt me and I was wet 
to the skin and felt so chilly." 12 

About ten o'clock Sunday morning the Regiment resumed 
its march, but after they had marched about six miles a terri- 
ble tragedy occurred: a private in Company I shot "our be- 
loved Major Lewis of Catasauqua [Pennsylvania] from his 
horse. The desperado was immediately arrested. The affair 

11 Peifer to his sister Mary, October 7, 1861, from Camp Lewis. He was 
sworn in Saturday, September 14. 

12 Peifer to his sister Mary, October 7, 1861, from Camp Lewis. 

Experiences of James A. Peifer 391 

cast a gloom over the Reg't. especially in our company as he 
was [our] Captain before he was promoted/' 13 

Soon, however, they resumed the march, "passing hun- 
dreds of camps." In a high field, twenty-eight miles from 
Washington, they pitched their tents, and named their camp 
Lewis in honor of the deceased Major. 

Peifer described the food as good and the Irish in his Regi- 
ment as being "a very hard set." The ineptness of the raw re- 
cruits exhausted Peifer's patience. He wrote: 

We are drilling about 5 times a day, but that does no good to 
some of our men as they are too stupid to learn. We do not ex- 
pect to see fight [ing] in a hurry ... as our Reg't is not drilled 
well enough yet. We hear cannonading occasionally and see 
rockets ascending, but we have not been called out [for battle] 
yet. 14 

The Regiment, however, was used to break up the smug- 
gling of goods to the Confederates by the many Southern 
sympathizers in Maryland. Peifer said that picket guards 
were placed on "the main roads leading to the [Potomac] 
river in order to stop all contraband and goods enroute for 
the Rebels. . . . We halted every team and searched it [includ- 
ing] every woman and child. The first relief had an amusing 
incident: two would-be ladies came driving along when the 
guards halted them and searched [them] and found four can- 
teens of whiskey concealed under their crinoline. They had 
brought it for some soldiers, which is against all military law 
and discipline. It was taken from them when they were al- 
lowed to pass on. . . ," 15 

They left Camp Lewis on October 21, about 8 o'clock in 
the evening, with Major-General Nathaniel P. Banks's whole 
Division. They marched briskly, "sometimes on a double 
quick, over very rough roads," crossed mud puddles, with 
heavy knapsacks on their backs, which "pulled mighty hard." 
When they arrived at Poolesville about 3 o'clock the next 

13 Peifer to his sister Mary, October 7, 1861, from Camp Lewis. 

14 Peifer to his sister Mary, October 7, 1861, from Camp Davis. The com- 
pany was composed of Germans, Dutch, Americans and Irish. The Irish 
were in the majority and they could not agree very well with the Irish. 

15 Peifer to his sister Mary, October 16, 1861, from Camp Lewis. 

392 The North Carolina Historical Review 

morning, "having marched about 10 miles," they naturally 
"expected to put up for a day or two, but we were sadly dis- 
appointed to hear that we would march to the Potomac, a 
distance of 5 miles. We were completely worn out, but the 
officers cheered us up . . . [by saying that] it was a case of 
necessity . . ." 

After the Division had passed about a mile beyond Pooles- 
ville, we met "ambulances, containing the wounded of the 
battle near Leesburg, in which Col. E. D. Baker lost his life. 
. . . We heard their groans, met a great many on foot, some 
without hats, without shoes and stockings, their clothes torn 
off. When they told us that two Reg'ts were completely cut 
up by the Rebels, Col. Baker's California Regt and part of 
Massa [chusetts] 20th, [and that] they lost several hundred 
men . . . [that out] of a company of 120, only 19 were left 
to mourn their loss . . . [this] sorrowful tale . . . cheered us up 
again. ... We now marched a little more briskly, tired as we 
were. We reached a large wood about 5 o'clock in the morn- 
ing about a quarter of a mile from the [Potomac] River. Here 
we met troops coming from the River and the ambulances 
still bringing the wounded." 16 

The ambulances carrying the wounded were halted where 
Banks' Division had bivouacked temporarily. James A. Peifer 
described their horrible experiences in these words: 

It now commenced to rain very hard and we [Banks' Divi- 
sion] had no shelter but the trees. We were all in a perspiration, 
. . . our rations were nearly played out . . . [except] a little meat 
and crackers. . . . We were lying there beside our fires wet to the 
skin when Regt. after Regt. arrived and the wounded [were] 
still brought in ambulances. It was the most pitiful and awful 
sight I ever saw. It chilled my blood when I heard the groans of 
the poor fellows as they lay there in pain. I then got an idea of 
the horrors of war ; and as we expected a battle that day yet, 
you can imagine that we felt rather strange about it. I then 
thought of you and home, and perhaps that night would be my 
fate to fall. 17 

16 Peifer to his sister Mary, October 29, 1861. Written from Selfridge. He 
described the march since October 21 when they departed from Camp Lewis. 

17 Peifer to his sister Mary, October 29, 1861. Written from Selfridge, but 
completed at Camp Williams, named in honor of Brigadier General Williams. 

Experiences of James A. Peifer 393 

At about six on October 23 they again fell in line and 
marched to the Potomac, but for some reason they were order- 
ed to return to their original camp fires, which were still 
burning. On the next day, October 24, not a Federal soldier 
could be seen on the Virginia side of the River whereas "a 
few hours before there were several Regiments" in view. Peifer 
had even previously seen skirmishing between the Federal 
and Confederate troops. 

Peifer believed that the withdrawal of the Federal troops 
was due to "some scheme of General McClellan's as he, Gen. 
Banks and Stone were at our camp that day spying the troops 
on the other side. We also ascertained that the Rebel General 
[Joseph EJ Johnston's force at Leesburg was very strong." 18 

On October 24 the Division marched to Camp Selfridge, 
sometimes called Muddy Branch, where they pitched their 
tents. They were in the field with the 5th Connecticut. Op- 
posite them was "the Pennsylvania 20th, New York 29th, 
United States Regular Batt'y. We are all clearing a large 
pine wood for our winter quarters. ... It is fun to see several 
hundred men, with picks, spades, and axes. ... It is a beauti- 
ful place surrounded by beautiful pines to keep out the strong 
wind. We will have our winter quarters here as we have to 
guard the Potomac this winter." 19 

Soldiers, as a rule, are optimistic and ready to believe and 
to rejoice upon hearing of good news in battle. On November 
14, 1861, Peifer wrote"! 

Last night we received some good news from Kentucky, that 
our troops had gained another victory, took a General and cap- 
tured 1,000 of the Rebels. Our whole camp was in commotion . . . 
and cheering. ... It is cheering for us to hear when our troops 
gain a victory, as they have [so often] been defeated, but you 
cannot call it defeated exactly as we have generally to fight 
double the number and still we whip them. Think of the battle 
of Balls-Bluff near Leesburg where about 1200 men had to fight 
about 6000 Rebels. There were so many Philadelphians engaged 
there and laid down their lives to put down this Rebellion. . . . 

18 Peifer to his sister Mary, October 29, 1861. Written from Selfridge. 

19 Peifer to his sister Mary, October 29, 1861. Written from Selfridge. He 
asked his sister Mary in Philadelphia to send him through William Yohe 
of Bethelehem a pair of buckskin fleecy lined gloves with large cuffs. 

394 The North Carolina Historical Review 

We were . . . marched to the river's bank, but were not taken 
across, and [I am] sorry we were [not] as we were ready to 
fight and to die to revenge our fellow soldiers' death. 20 

Time must have been weighing heavily on James Peifer's 
hands when he wrote his sister on November 22, 1861, de- 
scribing what he had in his knapsack: 

My knapsack contains . . . four pair of stocking, five or six 
handkerchiefs, 1 pair of drawers and another pair I wear, one 
undershirt and one on my back, 1 white government shirt, merino 
scarf, my old three month pantaloons, blanket, and gumblanket 
. . . 1 Testament and two or three other little books . . . Ellins 
Ambrotype and a portfolio to keep my pen and paper, a memo- 
randum, and a little bag 'which Mother made' containing thread, 
needles, buttons, and a pair of scissors, and now that pair of 
[buckskin] gloves [which you sent me], and [I expect to] re- 
ceive my overcoat [soon] ... I wear three shirts [and] drawers. 
I also own a haversack, which contains a Yankee tin cup, a piece 
of Castile soap, an old pipe, an oil rag to clean my gun, and 
handful of pieces of crackers. The next . . . but not least is my 
cartridge box, which weighs about six pounds, containing 40 
cartridges, 1 bullet and three buckshot, weighing about two 
ounces. In another part is another oil rag ... a screw driver, 
and what we call 'wormer' to draw loads. This is on a belt. On 
the same belt is the capbox on the right and the bayonet scab- 
bard on the left. This belt is worn around the waist. Next is the 
musket, weighing about 10 pounds. After we have these things 
all loaded up, it makes quite a load for a long march. 21 

In the same letter he gave a vivid description of his shoes: 

Our feet are covered with shoes, Uncle Sam style, with soles 
an inch thick, but not worth anything, and much too large [in] 
every way. . . . They are about six inches wide, wide enough to 
contain two of my feet, but in length they will do. There is no 
shape about them, being one width from heel to toe, and the 
heels — you would laugh to see them ! . . . [They] are quite low 
and as wide as the shoe; well, they are about the size of an or- 
dinary teacup. They remind me of the 'Mud Scows' you generally 
see on the canals, and I think all they want to fit them out for 
the purpose would be a rudder, and towline, and three stout 

30 Peif er to his sister Mary, November 14, 1861. Camp Knipe, Montgomery 
County, Maryland. 

81 Peifer to his sister Mary, Camp Knipe, Montgomery County, Maryland, 
November 22, 1861. 

Experiences of James A. Peifer 395 

mules, and I think they would do to tow Jeff Davis to the Land 
of Glory, or to the Infernal Regions, just as he pleases, but I think 
he deserves the latter. 22 

On December 10, 1861, Peifer reported this surprising 
scene which took place in their camp just outside of Fred- 
erick City, Maryland: 

Yesterday we had quite a time in camp. A nigger was caught 
in the act of bringing liquor in camp. They tied him and put him 
under guard awhile. At noon they brought him forth and tied 
him facing the tree and [gave him] 15 stripes with a horsewhip, 
well laid on. He grinned and danced around the tree considerably. 
They then sent him out with a reprimand. 23 

As Christmas day, 1861, approached, the soldiers had hopes 
"until the very last" that they would be invited out to a turkey 
dinner. After despairing of receiving such an invitation, they 
felt slighted. Having no other choice, they resorted to Uncle 
Sam's Christmas dinner. "It consisted lrst of rice-soup boiled 
with salt pork, which was nearly rotten, and we flung meat 
and soup out of the tent, as we could not eat it. It being 
Christmas, I boiled some good homemade coffee for dinner 
and then with bread and butter we managed to make a din- 
ner of it." 24 

In regard to the Mason and Slidell incident Peifer wrote 
on December 31, 1861, that "if England should pounce upon 
us as they threaten to do," the war would become extremely 
more dreadful and destructive. He hoped that the surrender- 
ing of these Confederate agents would satisfy the British; 
but if it did not, he believed that the Northern armies would 
be able to whip both the British and the Southerners. 

During January and February, 1862, Peifer and his regi- 
ment marched from camp to camp along the Potomac in 
Maryland. On February 23, about ten o'clock in the morn- 
ing, his regiment began to cross the river in an "old anscow," 

22 Peifer to his sister Mary, Camp Knipe, November 22, 1861. 

23 Peifer to his sister, Camp Matthews, near Frederick City, Maryland, 
December 10, 1861. 

24 Peifer to his sister Mary, Camp Matthews, December 26, 1861. This menu 
is quite different from what Uncle Sam gives its soldiers on Christmas in 
mid-twentieth century. 

396 The North Carolina Historical Review 

which transported "half a company at a time, until 2 in the 
afternoon [they] were in Dixie" for the first time. They 
marched about six miles along the river in Virginia, then 
crossed back into Maryland. 

On March 3, 1862, the troops again crossed the Potomac 
into Dixie, this time to stay for awhile. The heavy rains made 
marching uncomfortable. When they "reached Martinsburg 
about 5 o'clock, all wet and muddy to our knees and very 
tired, we took up quarters in a church and were soon comfort- 
able, having dried our clothes, etc. [The] next day [Tuesday 
the 4th] being a cold and blustering day, . . . we went out to 
a field [and] pitched our tents." 27> 

Soon after pitching their tents they were ordered to strike 
them down and to resume the march. The advance guard was 
soon fired upon and a minor skirmish ensued. The next day, 
March 5, the advance guard was again fired upon "by some 
Rebel Cavalry without doing any harm." While the firing 
was going on, Peifer's company helped themselves "to chick- 
ens, turkeys" and other desirables. 

The Division left Bunker Hill, Virginia, on March 11. When 
they were nearing Winchester, they were "beckoned by an 
old Pennsylvania farmer, a good Union man, to stop . . . 
go ting] so fast, as there were some of Col. Ashbys Rebel 
Cavalry . . . near us." Locating the enemy in the neighboring 
woods, they attacked and a running skirmish ensued. Ac- 
cording to Peifer, the Confederates lost fifteen men, killed 
and wounded, whereas the Union forces suffered no casual- 
ties, except that one of the men — Edward Huber — was 
wounded. This was Peifer's first experience under fire. 27 

Peifer's regiment was now only four miles from Winchester. 
The next day about two o'clock in the afternoon they march- 
ed into the town without "another shot being fired." Peifer 

Jackson and his so-called Stonewall Brigade had vamoosed, 
and were on a hasty retreat for Strasburg about 18 miles from 

25 Peifer to his sister Mary, March 8, 1862. Camp near Bunker Hill, 
Berkley County, Virginia. 

26 Peifer to his sister Mary, March 8, 1862, from Camp near Bunker Hill. 

27 Peifer to his sister Mary, March 19, 1862, Winchester, Virginia. 

Experiences of James A. Peifer 397 

here. We entered the [town with the] bands playing. . . . The 
glorious Stars and Stripes flung to the breeze again, where it 
has not floated since the opening of this Rebellion. Numerous 
dwellings are deserted and the remaining inhabitants are chiefly 
Secesh but dare not express it; but the ladies show by their 
long and wry faces and the figures they cut . . . that they hate 
and despise the Yankees, as they call us. . . , 28 

This successful skirmish caused Peifer to become extremely 
optimistic in regard to an early termination of the War. In 
the same letter he wrote: 

My opinion is that this war will be soon at an end, as we have 
nothing but victories on victories, and I expect to be home in 
July if spared, but not before we see a grand fight, for we belong 
to the Army of the Potomac, and Gen. McClellan says in a speech, 
they must settle the doom of the Rebels, Bully for that, I am 
ready. 29 

The women of Winchester apparently continued to show 
their disapproval of the Yankee invaders but Peifer said that 
the Northern soldiers were "just as proud as they are, with 
our glorious flag waving over all of them (Secesh and all); 
but what astonishes them most is the fine style we are dress- 
ed, as they have been accustomed ( since last summer ) to see 
nothing but poor gray homespun clothes and a disorganized 
army in command of Gen. Jackson, the so-called Stone Wall 
Brigade; but I don't understand the meaning of the expres- 
sion, as they never stood firm as a stone wall, but on the ad- 
vance of the Yankees they came to an about face, and off 
double, the same as they did here. As we entered the town 
[of Winchester] at one end they [went] out at the other and 
made good their escape, but they are soon cornered up, and 
they are bound to give up some bright day." 30 

Peifer added that the house of "the Traitor Mason [of the 
Mason-Slidell affair] ... is used as Gen. Williams' Headquart- 
ers, and the Stars and Stripes [are] floating over it.' 


28 Peifer to his sister Mary, March 19, 1862, Winchester, Virginia. 

29 Peifer to his sister Mary, March 19, 1862, Winchester, Virginia. 

30 Peifer to his sister Mary, March 19, 1862, Winchester, Virginia. 

31 Peifer to his sister Mary, March 19, 1862. This is located at Winchester, 


The North Carolina Historical Review 

The prices at Winchester in March 1862 are interesting: 


per lb. 

60 cts. and Scarce 


per doz. 

25 cts. and Scarce 


per. qt. 

60 cts. or 25 per sack 


per. qt. 

50 cts or very scarce 

Sugar brown 

per lb. 

30 to 60 (cts.) 


per lb. 

$4.00 very scarce 


per lb. 

$1.50 none of that 

Matches small boxes 

10 cts. square box 25 cts, 


per lb. 

25 cts. 

Com. Calicoes 

50 cts. (etc.) 32 

Sometime in December James A. Peifer was promoted to 
the rank of Corporal. He had been a conscientious soldier. 
Now that he was a corporal he told his sister that he would 
do everything in his power to please the officers. 33 

From Winchester the Regiment marched on April 1 to 
Strasburg, where they halted for a few hours. They could not 
move very fast because their artillery was shelling the enemy 
all along the march. Every moment they expected "to get in 
a fight." They saw "many Rebel clues all along the road, saw 
many of the Rebel shells, which did not explode. There were 
a great many picked up. [We] also saw an awful amount of 
dead horses, and the trees and fences were skinned with . . . 
shells and bullets. . . . We saw a large cloud of smoke ascend- 
ing, caused by the burning of a railroad bridge — they hav- 
ing burnt all the bridges as they went along." 34 

Peifer's impression of the people in the town of Woodstock 
is interesting: 

The Union sentiment not appearing to be very strong, as the 
women that were there generally turned up their noses and 
sneered at us. Near the end of town, however, we were cheered 
to see two beautiful women, smiling and waving their handker- 
chiefs. This cheered us up again, as it has been a long time since 
we had handkerchiefs of the fair sex waved to us as a token of 
friendship, such a thing is cheering to us soldiers. 35 [It is also 

32 Peifer to his sister Mary, March 19, 1862, Winchester, Virginia. 

33 Peifer to his sister Mary, March 19, 1862, Winchester, Virginia. 

34 Peifer to his sister Mary, April 5, 1862. Camp Stoney Creek near Wood- 
stock, Virginia. 

35 Peifer to his sister Mary, April 5, 1862, Camp Stoney Creek. 

Experiences of James A. Peifer 399 

of interest to note that the women of Virginia were] "busily 
engaged in gardening and planting." 36 

After passing through Strasburg, the Regiment marched 
some distance and halted at a hotel where three of Ashby's 
Cavalrymen were captured. Peifer wrote: 

I . . . had a squint at the animals and was satisfied that they 
are like other men, with the exception of the clothing. They ain't 
[sic] rigged out like (Uncle Sam's) men. I can assure you that 
they are clothed in all sorts, gray homespun overcoats, pants of all 
colors and grades, some have straw hats and caps, and a great 
many [are] in citizen's clothes ; in fact, they look pretty shabby. 37 

Peifer's company suffered other misfortunes than from bat- 
tle: "This week two of our men drowned in the Shenandoah, 
. . . two men died, two are in the hospital, . . . several are get- 
ting their discharges, . . . which reduces our company con- 
siderably." 38 

On April 10, 1862, Peifer wrote his brother that General 
Jackson "got a good licking" in the Battle of Winchester, 
March 23 and 24. He, however, had not participated in the 
fighting but he rejoiced over the fact that Stonewall Jackson 
would find it difficult to recuperate from his severe losses as 
a result of this engagement. Peifer's Regiment now returned 
to Winchester, where "the inhabitants made wry faces" at 
him when they marched into the town. 

Peifer related to his brother a few amusing incidents that 
happened while the Union forces were in Winchester. 

One day, several would be ladies, Secesh to the backbone, came 
down the street, and had to pass the General's headquarters 
where the Stars and Stripes were floating with dignity . . . out 
of a window [and] over the pavement. As they came nearer to 
it, one of them remarked to the other, Molly! Peggy, Katy, or 
whatever her name was, do you intend to walk by under that 
dirty rag there (pointing to it) . No never ! remarked the other 
one, and thus they struck across the street to avoid it, but they 
were overheard, as one of the General's Body Guard, was march- 

36 Peifer to his sister Mary, April 5, 1862, Camp Stoney Creek. 

37 Peifer to his sister Mary, April 5, 1862, Camp Stoney Creek. 

38 Peifer to his sister Mary, April 5, 1862, Camp Stoney Creek. 

400 The North Carolina Historical Review 

ing up and down the pavement as sentinel. He looked up and 
said, 'Misses! I think you have a dirtier rag under the skirts 
of your dresses/ They of course blushed and no doubt thought, 
'aint [sic] that a monster', . . . but I say Bully for the Zouave. 

A second incident was equally amusing: 

One day one of the 13 Massachusetts Boys came along, with 
a little flag in his hand. He came by a woman standing at the 
door (Secesh of course; this was after the battle) and when 
he came up to her he walked up coolly, and poking the flag at 
her . . .said, How do you like that by this time? She snatched it 
from his hand and threw it in the street. This was a little too 
much for the Yankee. He walked up coolly and said to her, "If 
you were not a woman, I would knock your a~s over kettle, for 
your d-n impudence." 39 

On April 23, 1862, Peifer wrote his sister from camp near 
Harrison ville. On their way to the new camp they could 
hear the exchange of shots between the Union batteries and 
Ashby's Cavalry. They "passed numerous farm houses, a great 
many not inhabited, and the few that were . . . appeared to 
be [occupied by] people of the lowest class, as the women 
and girls stood under the doors smoking pipes, and chewing 
tobacco, and spit like any man." 40 

The long march continued. When they passed through the 
small town of Hawkins the band struck up Dixie "and then 
the women with pipes rushed out again to see the Yankees . . . 
but one thing I am positive that they did not see, namely, 
long ears like Jacks as we were represented by the Rebels/' 41 

About four miles beyond Harrisonville they pitched their 
tents for the night but there was little rest for the Regiment 
because the "Rebels attacked our pickets . . . which resulted 
in the death of one and wounding . . . three ... of our Reg't. 
As soon as the Rebels saw us [reinforcements] come up they 
beat a hasty retreat with the loss of some dozen men [and] 
two Parrot guns." 42 

39 James A. Piefer to his brother, April 10, from camp near Woodstock. 

40 Peifer to his sister Mary, April 23, 1862, near Harrisonville, Pa. 

41 Peifer to his sister Mary, April 23, 1862, near Harrisonville, Pa. 
^Peifer to his sister Mary, May 6, 1862, near Harrisonville, Pa. 

Experiences of James A. Peifer 401 

After several days of marching they were in the Luray 
Valley. Here Peifer and his Regiment were sent on a recon- 
noitering expedition. 

The first day we made about 24 miles. Next day we moved 
on again to about 5 miles of Luray and our Cavalry made a 
charge through the town and found it occupied by about 200 
Rebel Cavalry, who fled on the approach of ours. We succeeded 
in capturing 4 prisoners, which we brought with us. We reached 
our camp again on Monday night [July 2] . . . very well worn 
out. The loss on our side was one killed and several wounded, 
and one man of the 10th Main was accidentally shot dead by the 
discharge of a gun. We are all anxious to hear the correct re- 
port of McClellan before Richmond. I hope he will succeed in 
taking it without a great loss. Tomorrow is the great national 
day — '4th of July*. . . . Perhaps at Richmond it will be cele- 
brated with a great battle, and I hope Richmond may then fall. 43 

In this letter Peifer admits to his sister for the first time 
that the Confederates, somewhere along their march, had 
come out with the better of an encounter: 

I wish you would send me your photograph again, as the other 
one is in Secesh, in the hands of the Rebels. We lost all but what 
we had on our backs. . . . We have again been provided with 
knapsacks, and I don't think they will get them again. 44 

Peifer was too ill to participate in the Battle of Culpeper, 
but he was able to record the results of that battle for his 
mother and sister: 

Now some of the wounded came in ... to camp and they told 
me of the battle, and [that] the boys of the 46th [Regiment of 
Pennsylvania Volunteers] . . . had suffered severely while charg- 
ing on a battery and were repulsed with heavy loss. . . . Our 
boys received a terrible crossfire from the front and rear. At 
first it was reported that only 90 men were left of the Regt., 
which completely shocked me, as they went into action about 
500 strong. On Monday morning I started out to find the remains 
of the Reg't, which I did about 5 miles beyond Culpeper, in a 
small wood. There were only about 100 there. I was utterly dumb- 
founded. They now told me all about [it] — which I cannot de- 

43 Peifer to his sister Mary, July 3, 1862, camp near Front Royal, Virginia. 

44 Peifer to his sister Mary, July 3, 1862, camp near Front Royal. 

402 The North Carolina Historical Review 

scribe. Many faces were missing which I had seen when they 
went out. Hundreds of ambulances were busy removing the 
wounded and burying the dead. In fact, our whole Brigade . . . 
had suffered severely, but the 46th [Pa. Regiment] , 5th Connecti- 
cut, and New York's 28th suffered more — there being only 
squads of companies left. Yesterday, [August] 12th, ours [46th 
Reg't] and [New York's] 28th . . . marched into town [Cul- 
peper]. The two Reg'ts [were] not as large as ours before the 
action. ... It was a solemn spectacle in camp. Co[l] Self ridge, 
our only field officer who escaped unhurt, made a solemn speech. 
When each company dispersed, our Company was 24 men strong 
out of 56 who went into action. 45 

Peifer's illness grew steadily worse until he became so sick 
that he could not walk. For a week he was transported from 
place to place in an ambulance. Finally, "so many were taken 
ill" that the sick and wounded were sent to Alexandria, 
where "about 300 [of them] were ordered on the Hospital 
boat and transported to Washington," where they were taken 
to Mount Pleasant Hospital, about two miles north of the 
city. He wrote his brother: "The hospitals are splendid, well 
ventilated; and the sick and wounded are well attended to." 46 

As Peifer thought he would remain at Alexandria for a 
while, he wrote home from there asking for some money. 
When he was sent to a hospital two miles north of Washing- 
ton he feared that the money might become permanently 
lost; therefore, "I wish you would see about that money and 
let me know immediately so that my mind may be at ease." 4T 

While in the hospital enjoying excellent accommodations 
and plenty of good food such as "fresh bread, potatoes, beef, 
beans, rice, molasses and butter occasionally," Peifer remain- 
ed extremely hopeful that the war would terminate success- 
fully at an early date. He wrote: 

I am . . . anxious to join my Reg't. I am homesick for the boys, 
and pity them, as . . . many a poor fellow will be laid low before 
this wicked Rebellion is over. The news are most cheering (if 

^Peifer to his mother and sister of Bethlehem from near Culpeper, Vir- 
ginia, dated August, 1862. He named all the killed, wounded and missing 
from Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. 

46 James A. Peifer to his brother William, September 4, 1862. Mount 
Pleasant Hospital, two miles north of Washington, D. C. 

* 7 Peifer to his brother William, September 4, 1862, Mount Pleasant 

Experiences of James A. Peifer 403 

true) and little Mac . . . will teach them whose soil they have in- 
vaded, and I am in hopes before many days the whole Rebel 
Army will be annihilated. 48 

Corporal Peifer is here referring to General Lee's invasion 
of Maryland and to the bloody Battle of Antietam. Peifer 
did not realize at the time that this proved to be one of the 
great battles of the world. If Lee had won this battle, Great 
Britain and France would have probably recognized the in- 
dependence of the Confederate states, and thus would have 
assured Southern independence. But instead of winning a 
victory, Lee was forced to withdraw during the night across 
the Potomac into Virginia. As Little Mac failed to pursue 
General Lee, President Lincoln removed him from command 
by placing General A. E. Burnside in that responsible posi- 
tion. The Battle of Antietam, however, gave to Lincoln the 
needed victory to issue his Emancipation Proclamation on 
September 22, 1862. The war had thus been waged to pre- 
serve the Union, but henceforth it would also be a war to 
free the slaves in the rebellious states. Peifer now reluctantly 
admitted that the Union Armies in the East were exactly 
where they had been at the beginning of the struggle. 

On September 28, 1862, Corporal Peifer wrote that he was 
still weak, but that he was eager to join his Regiment. He 
also said that there were at the time about 1500 patients in 
the Mount Pleasant Hospital. William Mast, who had been a 
prisoner of war for five weeks, arrived at the Washington hos- 
pital with five others. According to Peifer they were "mere 
skeletons. I was frightened when I saw him [Mast] . . . and 
when he told me what hardships he had to undergo, lie down 
on the ground, with a stone for a pillow, and the poor grub 
they had to eat. . . . His hips and knees are all raw, and still he 
felt quite lively the first day, told me all about his imprison- 
ment and harsh treatment. I felt like crying. . . . Yesterday I 
went to see him, and he was very low and could hardly speak, 
complained with pain in head and breast, and I doubt wheth- 
er he will recover. One of them died the first day. 


48 Peifer to his sister Mary from Mount Pleasant Hospital, September 19, 
1862. He had rheumatism and occasional attacks of diarrhea. 

49 Peifer to his sister Mary, September 28, 1862, Mount Pleasant Hospital. 

404 The North Carolina Historical Review 

By October 7, 1862, Peifer was able to report that "Wm. 
Mast is doing pretty well, and is gaining flesh and is up and 
around. We generally take short walks together, but still he 
is very weak " 50 On October 13, he again wrote that "Wil- 
liam Mast is doing fine. . . ," 51 By November 11, he had im- 
proved so much that he was sent to the United States General 
Hospital in West Philadelphia, where he hoped to get a fur- 
lough and probably a discharge from the army. 52 Eventually 
he recovered and was discharged from the army. 

To the best of his ability, Peifer followed the engagements 
of the 46th Regiment from his Washington hospital; but mili- 
tary information was very slow in arriving. He obtained some 
news through the papers, but it required a letter from Bethle- 
hem to inform him that his Company had gone into a recent 
battle with only eight men. "It is very hard indeed," said 
Peifer, "to reflect that our Company left Bethlehem with 100 
strong and healthy men, and in one year only 8 of them re- 
main, the rest being either killed, wounded or prisoners, or 
died of exposure." 53 

Peifer's earlier contempt for the Southern soldiers and 
armies seems to have changed considerably. He wrote: "It 
appears the Rebels are still hovering around Pennsylvania, 
according to reports a battle is expected there, but I do not 
believe half of them, as I don't think McClellan would let 
them slip his lines in force, but I do believe that before the 
winter closes in a great battle will be fought, and I hope our 
arms will be successful again, as we have had so many re- 
verses of late which have proved nearly fatal to our cause, 
and has also greatly emboldened the Rebels and will [cause 
them to] fight more desperately than ever. ... I hope that 
God may help us, and our arms be successful in the end." 54 

Peifer, still in the hospital, continued to worry about the 
tremendous losses of his old Regiment. 

As soon as I am able to join my Reg't. I will do so . . . [We] 
will remain for some time at Maryland Heights. I wish with all 

50 Peifer to sister Mary, October 7, 1862, Mount Pleasant Hospital. 

51 Peifer to sister Mary, October 13, 1862, Mount Pleasant Hospital. 

52 Peifer to sister Mary, November 12, 21, 1862, Mount Pleasant Hospital. 
58 Peifer to sister Mary, September 28, 1862, Mount Pleasant Hospital. 

54 Peifer to sister Mary, October 24, 1862, Mount Pleasant Hospital. 

Experiences of James A. Peifer 405 

my heart our Reg't could be so lucky once [as] to remain settled 
for awhile ; for the poor boys need some rest, and the Reg't ought 
to be recruited up, as it is at present very small in numbers, 
hardly 300 men, rank and file. It makes me shudder when I 
think of ... a Reg't of 1000 men dwindled down to 300 in the 
course of a year. . . . 55 

After spending ten weeks in Mount Pleasant Hospital, 
Peifer and some 200 other patients were sent on November 
15, 1862, to Annapolis. 

They drove us like cattle into some old cars, but me and my 
companions worked ourselves into a passenger car. [Having left 
the hospital at 8 a.m.] we laid off at Washington till 3 p.m., when 
they started off ; but first they came around . . . [to] give us our 
dinners, which consisted of salt-horse, as we call it, and dry 
bread. After stopping for hours on the road, finally at mid- 
night . . . [we] arrived here and were divided into the different 
buildings. It is in the Navy- Yard, and we use the buildings for- 
merly used as Naval Schools. . . . Our room [four occupants] 
contains four beds, two chairs, gas, and heated with steam. We 
like the place very well, but don't think it is as pleasant as the 
one we left. It is ... a great deal more comfortable here than in 
tents, but we have not as much liberty, and . . . they don't feed 
us as well. Breakfast, we get a slice of bread with a small par- 
ticle of butter, or applebutter, mighty poor coffee. Supper the 
same with poor tea. Dinner will do. Yesterday we had beef- 
steak rather tough, one potato, onions and a bowl of soup, pretty 
good. 56 

On November 21, Peifer told his sister that he had written 
home for a "box of good things [to eat] . . .as I am tired of 
dry bread and tea or coffee and think I could just enjoy . . . 
some of the delicacies of home sweet home." 57 

Peifer and his roommates, however, changed their diet by 
going down to the Chesapeake Bay to catch some fish. They 
caught "about four quarts of nice prime" oysters, which gave 
them "some good meals . . . something like home." 58 

55 Peifer to sister Mary, Sunday, November 2, 1862, Mount Pleasant 

56 Peifer to sister Mary, November 17, 1862. United States General Hos- 
pital, Annapolis Maryland. 

57 Peifer to sister Mary, November 21, 1862, United States General 

58 Peifer to sister Mary, December 8, 1862, United States General 

406 The North Carolina Historical Review 

Peifer was a paid a surprise visit in early December by 
Oliver Walter who had just been released from Libby prison. 
He looked so well and hearty that "prison life seemed to agree 
with him." He told Peifer, however, of the hardships which 
he had endured as a prisoner. "When they [the prisoners] got 
to Richmond the Rebels took all from them but what they 
had on their backs, even rummaged their pockets, took all 
the money they had, and pocket knives, and left them lie there 
for two or three months without even a change of clothes, 
and you can imagine the poor fellows were full of vermin 
and filth. But with all this he was quite lively." 59 

Peifer seemed to reach the depth of despair when he 

A few more weeks and Christmas will be here. How many 
more till this war will be settled [?] I hope not many. I am 
heartily sick of it. I wish [I] was out of it ... I would not like 
to join my Reg't now, it is too cold, but I will . . . hope on, hope 
ever. 60 

Six days later he wrote: 

You need not fear I will join my Reg't too soon, at least not 
till they send me, but I wish I could get my discharge. I would 
take that immediately. ... As some men have good luck in getting 
theirs, why cannot I be so lucky? 61 

Peifer was delighted when he heard that the Confederates 
had been driven from Fredericksburg, but he wrote more 
enthusiastically about the box of food which he received 
from his sister Mary: 

The box which I received yesterday [December 13] containing 
chicken, sausages, pudding, bread, pies, sugar cakes, jellies, 
apple-butter, molasses, butter, wine, horse-radish, apples and 
Christmas, and what not . . . [including] sauer-kraut. Won't 
that go nice [?] 62 

59 Peifer to sister Mary, December 8, 1862, United States General 

60 Peifer to sister Mary, December 8, 1862, United States General Hospital. 

61 Peifer to sister Mary, December 14, 1862, United States General 

62 Peifer to sister Mary, December 14, 1862, United States General 

Experiences of James A. Peifer 407 

It is of interest to note the contrast between the Christmas 
dinner of 1862 and that of 1861. 

Christmas day arrived and it reminded me of the 4th of July, 
as they have a peculiar mode of celebration [by] the discharging 
of firearms. . . . We also learned they were preparing a grand 
dinner for us. I soon found the place of report by the number 
standing around. I peeped into the windows and there was four 
large and long tables, loaded down with all kinds of eatables, 
turkey, oyster soup, bread, pies, potatoes, and apples. It was 
quite a treat for us. . . , 63 

Uncle Sam was frequently behind with his pay to the sol- 
diers. Peifer wrote on January 5, 1863: 

I would so much love to make you a present, but we cannot 
get our pay. We were again mustered for pay, and by last ac- 
counts the paymaster was coming, and still is coming. I think 
they are rather negligent. I have 4 months pay due me, and 
would love to have it. 64 

Peifer's sister Mary informed him that she was going to 
send him another box of food, but he discouraged the idea 
by saying: 

I don't need it, and [it] would be wasting money foolishly . . . 
I would desire to draw your attention to something else in lieu 
of the box, namely, you would oblige me more if you send me 
($100) [and] one dollar's worth of postage stamps, and as 
soon as we are paid off I will refund the money. It is reported 
we will get it soon. 65 

Time made a great change in Peifer's attitude toward the 
war. In 1861, he thought that the Southerners were such poor 
fighters that there was no question not only that the North 
would win, but that the North could defeat the South plus 
England. In early 1863, however, he had come to the con- 
clusion that the North could not even conquer the South. 

63 Peifer to sister Mary, December 27, 1862, United States General 

64 Peifer to sister Mary, January 5, 1863, United States General Hospital. 
66 Peifer to sister Mary, January 10, 1863, United States General Hospital. 

408 The North Carolina Historical Review 

I; agree with your opinion about the war. As it appears, we 
cannot subdue the South and I fear we will yet have foreign in- 
tervention, and that would be dreadful for us, as they would 
most assuredly give us a lesson. 66 

In January, 1863, Peifer received the stamps and the money 
which he had requested from his Sister. By this time even 
Peifer's patriotism had waned momentarily. 

I hope I may soon be enabled to refund the money, as I am 
anxious to have my pay; in fact, [I] ought to have it. I think it 
the duty of the government to pay off the poor soldier first, as 
he is the only one [who] needs it most. I noticed that you have 
a very clear insight about the war, and your views of it I think 
are very correct. All my patriotism has long left me, as it is no 
mpre fighting for the Union, but 'the Almighty Dollar' ; and thus 
it is prolonged, and very little done, and I would say if 'right 
makes might' why! go ahead, what need we fear? But as long 
as money can be furnished ,-. . . you can depend on it, you won't 
see it ended. How long will it be before the people will say, 'It 
is time the war is settled and we want peace? If it cannot be 
done by fighting, it must be done in some other [way] .' I would 
go in for most anything honorable and fair, but again the North 
ought not to be the one to propose it, neither give the Rebellious 
States one mite more than they had to extend their slavery, but 
I say leave it where it is, and no further extension. I heartily 
approve 'Old Abe's 'Emancipation Proclamation' if it does any- 
thing towards bringing the war to a speedier close. I think 
enough blood has been shed on both sides. ... I fear if it should 
ever be settled, it will leave a blot of disgrace and shame upon us. 
But enough about the war, as I am heartily sick of it. . . . If they 
would pay me what they owe and discharge [me] I would be 
very obliged and have no more to say. 67 

Peifer at last received some military news. He wrote: 

By all accounts, the Army under Burnside has again crossed 
the river, and flanked the enemy, and are now fighting. Gen. 
Hooker is reported mortally wounded. I hope and pray we may 
be successful this time. ... I have confidence that this time, we 
will have a victory, but no doubt also a heavy loss. 68 

66 Peifer to sister Mary, January 10, 1863, United States General Hospital. 

67 Peifer to sister Mary, Sunday, January 18, 1863, United States General 

68 Peifer to sister Mary, January 23, 1863, United States General Hospital. 

Experiences of James A. Peifer 409 

In answer to his sister's inquiry as to whether he had ap- 
plied for his discharge, Peifer wrote: 

I have not, and shall never. I would feel ashamed if I should 
succeed even in getting it, to go home as I wish and hope I may 
serve my country yet, and I would love to join my Reg't soon. You 
don't know how sorry I feel I am not there now, as they no doubt 
will again be thrown into the fight with their decimated ranks, 
and share the glory with them. I really feel ashamed at my 
situation. 69 

[To be concluded] 

Peifer to sister Mary, January 23, 1863, United States General Hospital. 


Edited by Jay B. Hubbell 

Calhoun did not, even in the closing years of his life, lack 
admirers in the northern states. Among the Calhoun papers 
in the Clemson College Library there are four letters written 
by James Kirke Paulding in 1848 and 1849 which express ap- 
proval of Calhoun's recent speeches in the United States 
Senate. Two of these were published in part in the "Cor- 
respondence Addressed to John C. Calhoun, 1837-1849," 
edited by Chauncey S. Boucher and Robert P. Brooks and 
published in the Annual Report of the American Historical 
Association for the year 1929. The four letters were not print- 
ed in full perhaps because in places the originals were no 
longer decipherable. 

Paulding's last letter to Calhoun, which is not in the Clem- 
son College Library, is dated March 19, 1850, only twelve 
days before Calhoun's death. It was printed in the Mobile 
Register early in the Civil War and reprinted in the Daily 
Dispatch for April 2, 1862. 1 1 have been unable to find either 
the manuscript of the letter or a copy of the Register in which 
it first appeared, but there seems no reason to doubt that the 
printed letter is substantially what Paulding had written. 
The letter, which is reprinted below, was occasioned by 
Calhoun's great speech of March 4, 1850, which since he was 
too ill to deliver it himself, was read by his friend Senator 
Mason of Virginia. Little need be said of the memorable 
debate on Clay's resolutions which formed the basis of the 
Compromise of 1850. The speeches of Calhoun, Webster, and 
William H. Seward, whom Paulding detested, are all skilfully 
summarized in Avery O. Craven's recent volume, The Growth 
of Southern Nationalism, 1848-1861 (1953). 

James Kirke Paulding (1778-1861) was one of the best 
known American writers of the early nineteenth century. A 

1 Daily Dispatch (Richmond, Virginia) , April 2, 1862, in Duke University 
Library, Durham. 


Paulding's Letter To Calhoun 411 

native of New York state, he grew up at Tarrytown and col- 
laborated with Washington Irving on Salmagundi in 1807 and 
1808. His sister Julia married Irving's brother William. Only 
two of his numerous books need to be mentioned here. His 
Letters from the South ( 2 vols., New York, 1817) is still valu- 
able for its account of life in Virginia. His Slavery in the 
United States (New York, 1836), which is mentioned in the 
letter reprinted below, reveals a hostility to the antislavery 
leaders and a strong sympathy with the southern position. 
Slavery, as he said in the Introduction to that book, seemed to 
him not "an evil of such surpassing enormity as to demand 
the sacrifice of the harmony and consequent union of the 
states, followed by civil contention and servile war, to its 

Paulding was no mere man of letters. In 1815 President 
Madison appointed him Secretary of the newly created 
Board of Navy Commissioners, and in 1824 Monroe appointed 
him Navy Agent for New York City. He gave up this position 
to become in 1837 Secretary of the Navy in Van Buren's Cabi- 
net. During the first and last of these appointments he was 
living in Washington, where he became a friend and admirer 
of Calhoun. There are two biographical studies of Paulding, 
which, strangely enough, do not mention Calhoun. Amos 
L. Herold's James Kirke Paulding: Versatile American ( New 
York, 1926) is concerned only with Paulding's literary work. 
The Literary Life of James K. Paulding (New York, 1867), 
compiled by his son, William I. Paulding, appeared at a time 
when Calhoun's reputation in the northern states was per- 
haps at its nadir; and the son had little to say about Paulding's 
southern connections. The letter as reprinted below is pre- 
ceded by the introductory notes of the editors of the Rich- 
mond Daily Dispatch and the Mobile Register. 


The subjoined letter, from the late J. K. Paulding, which has 
recently been brought to light, will be read with interest. It draws 
a faithful portraiture of that grand rascal, Seward, the worst 
man whom the Puritan race has yet produced — Benedict Arnold 
and Aaron Burr, their other two celebrities, not excepted. It is the 
race which has produced Arnold, Burr, and Seward, that is now 

412 The North Carolina Historical Review 

denouncing as traitors and rebels, and endeavoring to subjugate, 
the land of Washington, Jefferson, Lee, Henry, Marshall, and 
hosts of the brightest and best spirits of the American Revolution. 
Mr. Paulding describes them accurately, and, in his antipathy to 
Puritanism, expresses a sentiment which is quite as common in 
the Middle States as the South. But those States, like the West, 
have been harnessed by the cunning sons of the Pilgrims to their 
political and money schemes, and are now contributing the prin- 
cipal supplies of men and means to a war which, whatever be 
its results, can only end in the ruin of their own section, as well 
as New England : 

[From the Mobile Register] 

Through the courteous attention of a friend we are enabled 
to lay before the readers of the Mobile Sunday Register a letter, 
which from the name of the writer and that of the recipient, as 
well as from its contents, will be perused with interest in every 
section of the country. To the best of our knowledge this letter 
has never been published and as we print it from the autograph, 
we can vouch both for its genuineness and correctness [.] What 
grander epitaph inscribed to the memory of the lamented Pauld- 
ing than this patriotic blessing to the dying Calhoun? — What 
more fearful castigation could be administered to the leader of 
the Abolition cohorts than this portrait of him by one of the 
purest and most distinguished men of his own State? 

The speech of the great South Carolinian which called forth 
this earnest response from the friend and co-laborer of Wash- 
ington Irving, and one of the pioneers of American literature, 
was his last and greatest effort on the political stage, uttered 
when the tide of his glorious life was fast sinking to its ebb, and 
when the faltering body refused to support the weight of that 
great mind. Mr. Paulding's letter reached him on his death bed, 
only a few days before his dissolution. 

March 19, 1850 
My Dear Sir: I have received and read your speech with the 
deepest interest and attention. It traces the present crisis to 
its source, and points out the means of avoiding its consequences 
with perfect clearness, without declaration [declamation?] and 
without passion [.] It appeals to our reason and asks only justice. 
It will not perhaps be so much praised as some others ; but here- 
after when its predictions will be fulfilled, as I presume they 
will be ere long, unless the spirit of fanaticism is effectually 
checked in its career you will be quoted as one who foretold the 

Paulding's Letter To Calhoun 413 

danger and pointed out the only means by which it could be 
avoided. It gives me pleasure to see that you take the same 
ground, with one exception, which I assumed in a pamphlet 
I had prepared on the same subject, but for which I could find 
no publisher. I was also desirous of publishing a second edition 
of a work of mine on slavery, now out of print, but was met by 
the same obstacle. The literary as well as the political press is 
enthralled in the North, and audi alterem partem becomes an 
obsolete maxim. 

If you will permit me, I will suggest to you a doubt of the 
policy as well as efficacy of the guarantees you propose for the 
future safety of the South, which will be equally denounced with 
the Constitution as "violations of the law of God and the rights 
of nature" by the fanatics. They will be but burnt flax in their 
fiery furnace. I mention this, because it would seem that sev- 
eral of the representatives of the South are not prepared to 
go with you to that extent ; and, as I have formerly stated, I 
think unanimity of the last consequence to the South [.] It aston- 
ishes me to see the distinction of parties still kept up in that 
quarter and that when such momentous interests are at stake, 
instead of embarking to a man in one bottom, each one seizes his 
own plank and paddles away in different directions. 

I cannot express the contempt and disgust with which I have 
read the speech of our Senator, Seward, though it is just what 
I expected from him. He is one of the most dangerous insects 
that ever crawled about in the political atmosphere, for he is 
held in such utter contempt by all honest men that no notice 
is taken of him till his sting is felt. — He is only qualified to 
play the most despicable parts in the political drama, and the only 
possible way he can acquire distinction is by becoming the tool 
of greater scoundrels than himself. Some years ago, after dis- 
gracing the State of New York as Chief Magistrate, he found 
his level in the lowest depths of insignificance and oblivion, and 
was dropped by his own party [.] But the mud has been lately 
stirred at the very bottom of the pool, and he who went down a 
mutilated tadpole has come up a full-grown bull frog, more 
noisy and impudent than ever. This is very often the case among 
us here, where nothing is more common than to see a swindling 
rogue, after his crimes have been a little rusted by time, suddenly 
become an object of popular favor or executive patronage. The 
position taken and the principles asserted by this pettifogging 
rogue in his speech would disgrace any man — but himself. 

I fear it will not be long before we of the North become the 
tools of the descendants of the old Puritans, who had not the most 
remote idea of the principles of civil liberty, and no conception 
of religious toleration, but the most unrelenting intolerance. The 

414 The North Carolina Historical Review 

despotism of parsons is taking the place of that of kings; and 
the gown and the petticoat have conspired to usurp the breeches. 
Our freedom is in great danger of being sacrificed to texts of 
Scripture, and fanatical dogmas; the Twelve Tables are be- 
coming our law, and we shall be obliged to study the Pandects of 

I fear, too, you will be tempted to trespass too much on your 
strength in defending yourself from your foes and friends. Let 
me beg of you to bear in mind that at your age and mine, nature 
is not often strong enough to make more than one rally, and 
that every successive effort is productive not of vigor, but ex- 
haustion. Remember that, in all probability, the future will re- 
quire your exertions as well as the present. I rejoice to hear the 
favorable opinion of your physicians. Don't trouble yourself 
to reply. 

I am, my dear sir, 
Yours, very truly, 
Hon. John C. Calhoun, &c, &c, Washington. 


Tar Heel Ghosts. By John Harden. With drawings by Lindsay 
McAlister. (Chapel Hill: The University of North Carolina 
Press. 1954. Pp. xiv, 178. $3.00.) 

As in The Devil's Tramping Ground and Other North Caro- 
Mystery Stories ( University of North Carolina Press, 1949 ) , 
John Harden has done an excellent job in this collection of 
short stories. The main title is based purely on the fact that 
all the stories have a North Carolina locale. The ghosts them- 
selves have no characteristics not shared by ghosts the world 

It seems certain, however, that this book will aid materially 
in keeping these ghosts alive and active in North Carolina 
for some time to come. Each of the stories is self-sufficient; 
each one is a good story; and each one is well told. The 
typical story in the group has only two or three principal 
characters, depends for its action on a single dramatic inci- 
dent, and weaves in the ghostly element in most authentic 
fashion. That is, the reader is led to suggest to himself some 
explanation in natural phenomena or simple psychology and 
then to discover his error. 

The style is clear, crisp, and conversational. With the ex- 
ception of the first story, "A Colonial Apparition," there is 
little or no plot. Hence, there is no occasion for the stand- 
ard ghostly devices of horror, suspense, climax, and anticli- 
max. The principal incident in some of the stories early be- 
comes the occasion for the origin of a ghost who then busies 
himself in aiding or frustrating the plans of friendly or un- 
friendly humans. In others this order is reversed; the ghost- 
ly performance is presented and then explained in terms of 
some incident occurring decades or generations preceding. 

Quite naturally there are no young ghosts in the lot, the 
author declares in his Introduction that he has never found 
a blonde ghost, and it is doubtful that we shall ever have 
any city-bred ghosts. The Introduction is vaguely hopeful 
that ghosts will survive our gadget-ridden civilization in the 
assumption "that only in the far distant tomorrows will they 


416 The North Carolina Historical Review 

come in technicolor and 3-D." It seems more likely now that 
ghosts and lovers of ghost stories will cling to the old-fashion- 
ed themes of rural cemeteries, deserted houses, unfulfilled 
loves, and unavenged murders. John Harden has done his 
own and future generations a real literary service in selecting 
and telling these stories. 

Paul Murray. 
East Carolina College, 

The History of Trinity Parish, Scotland Neck, [and] Edgecombe 
Parish, Halifax County. By Stuart Hall Smith and Claiborne 
T. Smith, Jr. (Scotland Neck: The Authors. 1955. Pp. x, 115. 
Map and illustrations. $2.25, paper; $3.50, cloth.) 

Rather than being a continuous history of the Church in 
Halifax County, this little volume is made up of a series of 
essays by the two authors and others. The first section is 
devoted to a history of the Church of England in Edgecombe 
Parish, Halifax County. This parish originally was established 
in 1741 with the formation of Edgecombe County; when the 
county was divided in 1756 to create Halifax County the 
original parish name was assigned to the new county thus 
creating the anomaly of having Edgecombe Parish in Halifax 
County while Edgecombe County's parish was called St. 
Mary's. The author gives us an adequate sketch of the church 
from the formation of the parish until the beginning of the 
present century. Footnotes containing additional information 
about persons mentioned will delight the genealogist. 

The account of Trinity Parish, Scotland Neck, is the centen- 
nial address of one of the authors delivered at the church 
in 1932. Following the address are full notes prepared more 
recently by the other author. 

A description and history of the interesting old church 
which was burned and rebuilt, but which still stands, is 
"adapted from a sketch written by Lena H. Smith." A brief 
biographical study of Bishop Cheshire who served as rector 
of Trinity Church at one time is by his grandson, J. B. 
Cheshire, III. 

Book Reviews 417 

A final section and two appendixes reprint the entries in 
the Trinity Parish register which survived the fire although 
the early entries were lost, a list of marriages performed by 
Mr. Cheshire, and some tombstone inscriptions. 

The authors have given us not only a history of the Epis- 
copal Church in their area, but have included much general 
local history and genealogy. Although the volume is attractive 
in appearance it contains numerous typographical errors. 

William S. Powell. 

The University of North Carolina, 
Chapel Hill. 

Thomas Wolfe : The Weather of His Youth. By Louis D. Rubin, 
Jr. (Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press. 1955. Pp. 
xiii, 183. $3.50.) 

This is one of the better books on Thomas Wolfe, the Ashe- 
ville-born controversial literary figure. 

Though Wolfe has been dead almost 17 years, interest re- 
mains among the reading public to such an extent that all of 
his books are still in print and there is a rather steady out- 
pouring of essays and books that seek to analyze and interpret 
him and determine his place in American literature. 

Some cultists are so fond of Wolfe and his writings that 
they fail to discriminate. Some persons dismiss his work with 
a shrug. 

Wolfe, though highly talented, was mortal. The sensible 
way is to appraise him and his works as such and steer a 
middle course. This Rubin has done admirably. 

He finds Wolfe's books continue to be read because they 
possess artistic appeal. After discussing the form of auto- 
biographical fiction, Rubin examines some of the methods 
and purposes of Wolfe's life and work, "so that we may seek 
to understand the use made of autobiographical material bv 
one American writer, the form it took and what he could and 
could not achieve with it." 

Rubin examines Wolfe's novels carefully. After a discussion 
and interpretation of his life in town (Asheville) and city 
(New York) and the influence of his father and mother, 

418 The North Carolina Historical Review 

Rubin concludes that Wolfe's place in American literature 
may well be as a one-volume novelist. He adds: 

"But what a tremendous one volume Look Homeward, 
Angel is! The characters are rounded and complete. It tells 
a story fully and well. It is the story of a boy growing up 
in a North Carolina town from 1900 to 1920, and it truth- 
fully captures a twenty-year segment of the past for us. It is 
alive in space and color and time, because when the author 
wrote it he was temporarily home again, and the weather of 
his youth around him." 

This reviewer is not disposed to quarrel with this appraisal. 
There is considerable argument to support it. Its soundness, 
however, can be proved only with the passage of time. There 
is merit in all of Wolfe's novels, but Look Homeward, Angel 
is the greatest of his works. 

Rubin, a native of Charleston, S. C, and an assistant pro- 
fessor of American Civilization at the University of Pennsyl- 
vania, makes a noteworthy contribution in this book to a 
proper understanding of Wolfe's place in American literature. 

George W. McCoy. 

Asheville, N. C. 

From Mine to Market: The History of Coal Transportation on 
the Norfolk and Western Railway. By Joseph T. Lambie. (New 
York: New York University Press. 1954. Pp. xviii, 380. $6.00.) 

This book, as its author states, is a history of the coal 
traffic of the Norfolk and Western Railway. Other aspects of 
the company's history are treated only as they bear directly on 
the development of the coal traffic. The policies adopted, the 
competitive, financial, and regulatory problems encountered, 
and the errors made are discussed in detail. Considerable 
attention is devoted to the subject of freight rates, and the 
importance of management with imagination and vision in 
the successful development of the company is emphasized. 
The period covered dates from 1881 when the then existing 
plant was sold at foreclosure sale to the present day. The 
books ends with a chapter entitled "Coal Transportation: 

Book Reviews 419 

Yesterday and Tomorrow" in which recent developments 
that are affecting the use and transportation of coal are dis- 

The author has succeeded admirably in organizing a vast 
amount of historical and statistical detail into an objective 
account which holds the reader's attention. The style is lively 
and does not become monotonous. 

The field which was chosen has been covered well. The 
study is documented from a variety of sources, including 
newspaper and magazine accounts, annual reports of the 
Norfolk and Western Railway and of other railroad com- 
panies, annual reports of coal mining firms, Interstate Com- 
merce Commission sources, Congressional investigations, 
court decisions, and correspondence of the officials of the 
railway company. 

This book is a valuable addition to the list of railway 
histories and, owing to the peculiar location of the coal field 
served by the Norfolk and Western Railway, it is an impor- 
tant contribution to the knowledge of the general economic 
history of the nation. 

Charles E. Landon. 

Duke University, 


Justice William Johnson, the First Dissenter; The Career and 
Constitutional Philosophy of a Jeffersonian Judge. By Donald 
G. Morgan. (Columbia: University of South Carolina Press. 
1954. Pp. xv, 326. $6.50.) 

When President Jefferson in 1804 had his first opportunity 
to inject a Republican into the solidly Federalist Supreme 
Court of Chief Justice John Marshall he chose thirty-two year 
old South Carolina Judge William Johnson. From the Presi- 
dent's standpoint it did not prove to be an altogether satis- 
factory appointment for during nearly thirty years of tenure 
Johnson maintained an independence which at times placed 
him as much in conflict with the views of Jefferson as with the 
doctrines of Marshall. Indeed, his first major encounter was 
with the President rather than with his enemy of the bench. 

420 The North Carolina Historical Review 

But apparently Johnson's devotion and admiration for the Vir- 
ginian never faltered. And Jefferson's influence on Johnson 
was at times substantial. 

Republican Justice Johnson was least Republican in his 
consistently broad construction of congressional power. With 
the implied power doctrine of the McCulloch case he was 
in full agreement and in Gibbon vs. Ogden he "out Marshalled 
Marshall" in ascribing broad discretion to Congress. But he 
parted company with Marshall at many points. He was less 
sensitive to property rights than to the right of popularly 
elected legislatures, both national and state, to protect indi- 
vidual freedom and to promote social justice. He was inclined 
to interpret rather narrowly judicial as well as executive 
power. His concern for the right of states to retain broad 
control over local matters made him increasingly loath to 
strike down state legislation. But state rights as the term 
was coming to be understood in South Carolina he firmly 
opposed. To him division was always a greater danger than 

Probably Johnson's greatest impact on the Supreme Court 
was in the matter of procedure. When he took his seat there 
was a firmly established practice under which the Associate 
Justices silently concurred as the Chief Justice spoke for an 
ostensibly united court. Against this practice Johnson cam- 
paigned from the first by asserting his own views in separate 
concurring or dissenting opinions. Although he became 
strangely quiet in the historic decisions of 1819-1822 he then 
resumed his campaign, largely as the result of skillful prod- 
ding by Jefferson, and in the next ten years wrote nine con- 
curring and eighteen dissenting opinions. The evidence 
strongly supports the author's conclusion that Johnson was 
primarily responsible for the "establishment of that procedure 
. . . which most harmoniously reconciled authoritativeness 
with intellectual freedom— the single statement for the ma- 
jority combined with separate utterances by independents." 

In writing an interesting and thoroughly scholarly biog- 
raphy of William Johnson, Professor Morgan has not only 
rescued from undeserved obscurity an able member of the 
Supreme Court but has also contributed much to the better 

Book Reviews 421 

understanding of the court in the period of its most significant 
development. Students of law, government and history will 
find this a very rewarding book. 

C. E. Cauthen. 

Wofford College, 

Spartanburg, S. C. 

The Colonial Records of South Carolina. The Journal of the Com- 
mons House of Assembly, September 14, 1742-January 27, 
1744. Edited by J. H. Easterby. (Columbia: South Carolina 
Archives Department. 1954. Pp. xi, 607. $12.50.) 

The South Carolina Archives Department, formerly the 
Historical Commission of South Carolina, has published the 
fourth volume in the excellent new series entitled The Jour- 
nal of the Commons House of Assembly. It contains the first 
half of the proceedings of the House which assembled Sep- 
tember 14, 1742, and adjourned for the last time May 25, 

These records reveal considerable apathy among the newly- 
elected representatives. Even though the province was be- 
lieved in imminent danger of invasion by Spanish and French 
forces, only half of the forty-two seats were filled for the 
opening session. Lieutenant Governor William Bull promptly 
delivered a message designed to stimulate action, but instead 
of enacting legislation the House took a two months recess 
for the harvest. In the spring of 1743, however, after deposi- 
tions of several former prisoners had revealed the enemy 
about to strike, measures were hurried through for the com- 
pletion of fortifications in Charles Town, Port Royal, George 
Town, and elsewhere. 

The apparent indifference of the House toward the War of 
Austrian Succession was matched by that of certain British 
sailors. The governor declared that captains of His Majesty's 
ships complained "that their Seamen desert from them in 
great Numbers, being tempted thereto by the high Wages 
given in the Merchant Service, and, as they alledge, inticed 
away by the Inhabitants of Carolina." He asked for a law to 
prevent "their going by Land to the Northward Colonies, 

422 The North Carolina Historical Review 

which in my Opinion would not only discourage any future 
Attempts of such Seamen but also of our Servants who have 
frequently deserted to those Parts." 

A growing fear of domestic insurrections was apparent 
when the security laws were amended by adding the re- 
quirement that "all Persons going to Church or other Places 
of divine Worship, except Travellers, should be obliged to 
carry Guns or Horse Pistols." 

These records also illuminate the vagaries of the fee system. 
The House allowed the governor one pound for signing a 
marriage license, the marshall of the admiralties the same 
amount for the execution of a criminal, but the sexton only 
four shillings for "Digging the Grave and filling it up." 

Dr. Easterby demonstrated careful scholarship as well as 
infinite patience in preparing this imposing volume of pre- 
viously unprinted materials. The index, which is more de- 
tailed than those of the earlier volumes, will prove quite 
useful to readers who first consult the editor's clear "Explana- 
tion of the Index." 

Henry S. S troupe. 

Wake Forest College, 

Wake Forest. 

Glimpse of Glory, George Mason of Gunston Hall. By Marian 
Buckley Cox. (Richmond, Virginia: Garrett and Massie, Inc. 
1954. Pp. xvii, 254. $4.00.) 

Marian Buckley Cox has beautifully written in this compact 
volume the story of George Mason, composer of Virginia's 
precursor to the Bill of Rights. It is well-documented fiction 
which allows the reader to visualize Gunston Hall as the 
homestead of a bride and groom rather than the stately man- 
sion one sees today on a "Heritage Month" tour of Virginia's 
historic colonial homes, towns and cities. 

George Mason, spoken of by James Street as "the godfather 
of the Bill of Rights" and "a disciple of Jefferson," was a 
delegate to the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia 
in 1787. He framed the words of Virginia's Declaration of 
Rights which were later incorporated into those of Pennsyl- 

Book Reviews 


vania and Massachusetts "almost verbatim" by Benjamin 
Franklin and John Adams respectively. 

Serious in thought and word, an insatiable reader of the 
classics in his ample library, George Mason exemplified the 
best of the patriots who struggled to preserve human liberty 
and dignity in the pre-Revolutionary days of our country. He 
did not sanction human slavery and though he owned slaves, 
he sounded the prophecy of the controversy which culmin- 
ated in the Civil War almost a hundred years after his death. 

Mrs. Cox has brought George Mason to life: his thought 
and words are known to almost every school child yet the 
man has been buried in oblivion. Through the pages of this 
book, Washington as a young man; Patrick Henry as the fire- 
brand of the Virginia Conventions; Lord Dunmore as gover- 
nor of Virginia; Jefferson and Franklin as ministers to France; 
and others assume their places in history. 

Gunston Hall stands today— lovingly cared for by the Na- 
tional Society of Colonial Dames of America, as a memorial 
to George Mason. The boxwood, undoubtedly planted upon 
Mason's orders, are two hundred years old and like sentinels 
guard over the house, gardens, and frame the historic Po- 
tomac River. One imagines George Mason as the gracious 
host, devoted husband and loving father as he tends his lands 
with care, thinking seriously of the problems which beset the 

The book has an Introduction, complete footnotes, Bibliog- 
raphy, and an Appendix which contains Virginia's Declara- 
tion of Rights, The Declaration of Independence and the Bill 
of Rights. Maps on the inside covers are a valuable aid to the 
reader in establishing Gunston Hall in relation to other points 
in the colony. 

The book should appeal to the general reading public as 
well as students of history. The story moves rapidly in spite of 
the wealth of documentary material which is used. Truly as 
the author says, "Turn back then, if you would see Gunston 
Hall live again, . . . the men and women, boys and girls and 
little children, with their negroes, dogs, and horses; and catch 
if you can the sound of fiddle and hunting horn, the laughter 

424 The North Carolina Historical Review 

and the weeping, and most of all, the glimpse of glory in our 
country's future— that hope which gave courage to our fore- 

Elizabeth W. Wilborn. 

Department of Archives and History, 


The Tinkling Spring, Headwater of Freedom. A Study of the 
Church and Her People, 1732-1952. By Howard McKnight 
Wilson. (Richmond, Virginia: Garrett and Massie, Inc. 1954. 
Pp. xviii, 542, folding map. $8.00.) 

This is not only the history of a church but the story of a 
people. The so-called Scotch-Irish are briefly traced from 
Ulster to the Pennsylvania area, and then down to their 
settlements in the Valley of Virginia. Notices of the early 
religious groups in this section are followed by a record of 
the beginnings of Tinkling Spring Church, with extended 
consideration of its first pastor, Rev. John Craig. 

The narrative is then carried across the two succeeding 
centuries with balanced emphasis upon the religious, edu- 
cational, cultural, and military life and activity of the people 
of the Congregation. Special note is taken of Hermitage Pres- 
byterian Church, associated with Tinkling Spring, as is true 
of several other congregations which grew out of the latter. 
The author has not been unmindful of the wider mission of 
Tinkling Spring in giving of her sons and daughters to the 
ministry and missionary endeavor. 

The Church has enjoyed long pastorates, having had but 
fifteen regularly installed ministers, or the practical equiva- 
lent thereof, since 1740, the fifteenth being the author of the 
volume under consideration. Three of the number, Benjamin 
M. Smith, Robert L. Dabney, and Givens B. Strickler, were 
later to become distinguished as professors at Union The- 
ological Seminary in Virginia. 

The numerous pictures are well selected and supply ex- 
cellent illustrations for the printed text, though one wonders 
why that of the statue of the Pioneer Woman was chosen for 
the frontispiece, and may question the use of sepia-toned ink 
for their reproduction. An Appendix, such as to bring joy 

Book Reviews 425 

to the heart of the historian, and several helpful maps lend 
further value to the volume. 

It is a big book and a good book. Factual, readable, and 
obviously the result of careful and prolonged research, this 
work constitutes a significant addition to Virginia history as 
well as to that of the Presbyterian Church. 

Thomas H. Spence, Jr. 

Historical Foundation, 


Rebel Private Front and Rear. By William Andrew Fletcher. 
Edited with a preface by Bell Irvin Wiley. (Austin: Uni- 
versity of Texas Press. 1954. Pp. xvii, 162. $3.75.) 

Civil War students and enthusiasts will welcome a new 
edition of William Andrew Fletcher's Rebel Private Front 
and Rear. A limited first edition in 1908 and its subsequent 
destruction by fire had combined to make this memoir a scarce 
item. Although written from memory more than forty years 
after the war, the volume presents a fascinating picture of the 
life of a common soldier of the Confederacy. 

The outbreak of war in 1861 found twenty-two year old 
William Fletcher working as a carpenter in Beaumont, Texas. 
He enlisted in Company F, Fifth Texas Regiment which 
soon became a part of Hood's famous Texas Brigade. Measles, 
mumps, camp lice and the Seven Day's fighting served to 
initiate Fletcher and his fellow Texans into army life. A hip 
wound received at Second Manassas almost ended Fletcher's 
soldiering, but weeks of suffering in a hospital and a sixty-day 
furlough found him back with his company in time for Fred- 
ericksburg. Voicing the opinions of the fighting men, he found 
no criticism for Longstreet after the battle of Gettysburg. 
A serious foot wound at Chickamauga ended his service in 
the infantry, but he transferred to "Terry's Texas Rangers" 
and served until captured late in the war. The exciting ac- 
count of Fletcher's escape is only one of many well-told 

Private Fletcher's narrative bears ample witness to the 
resourcefulness and ingenuity of Southern soldiers. Readers 

426 The North Carolina Historical Review 

will delight in the descriptions of camp life and foraging par- 
ties as well as the detailed lesson in noiseless chicken-stealing. 
Valuable as an account of life in the Southern army, Fletcher's 
memoir is all the better because of its lively humor. 

In the preface Bell Irvin Wiley, who has discovered the 
common soldier, supplies the reader with a history of the 
volume and traces the postwar career of Private Fletcher. 

Richard D. Younger. 
University of Houston, 
Houston, Texas. 

A History of the Southern Confederacy. By Clement Eaton. 
(New York: The MacMillan Company. 1954. Pp. ix, 351. 

In spite of the vast number of works on the American Civil 
War, there have been comparatively few scholarly volumes 
devoted to the general history of the Confederacy. Professor 
Eaton has done much to remedy that situation and has ren- 
dered an invaluable service by presenting a compact and 
highly readable account covering a relatively neglected field. 
Not only has the author attempted to bring together the vari- 
ous economic, political, military, social, and cultural aspects 
of the Confederacy, but he has tried to portray something 
of the feelings of the Southern people and the human drama 
of the war itself. He has succeeded at both tasks and in the 
process has produced a well-balanced study that probes many 
neglected areas. 

The volume is primarily factual and does not purport to 
present a lengthy and analytic discussion of causes and re- 
sults. Nevertheless, the author has brought his own mature 
judgement to bear upon many important issues, and in some 
instances has posed sound solutions to problems that have 
frequently been resolved by cliches. This sense of balance and 
soundness of observation are apparent throughout the book 
and add immeasurably to the value of both those chapters cov- 
ering often-discussed subjects and those relating to lesser 
known aspects of the Confederacy. In the first chapter, for 

Book Reviews 427 

example, Professor Eaton has plunged into the highly contro- 
versial year of 1860 and emerged with a well-rounded account 
of secession that takes into consideration not only the political 
and economic factors but does ample justice to the influences 
of emotionalism and the reactions of the Southern mind. Simi- 
larly, in the chapter on the creation of a Southern Republic, 
the author has escaped the pitfalls of oversimplifiication by 
pointing out several possible and logical reasons for the fre- 
quent lack of statesmanship and the general mediocrity of 
civil administration. 

This same poise is evident in the ensuing chapters that 
deal with diplomatic negotiations, military and naval opera- 
tions, and economic disintegration. Although such subjects 
frequently have been treated in other works, Professor Eaton 
has managed to pack a considerable amount of information 
into a comparatively small space and at the same time add 
to previous accounts by the insertion of new and often re- 
freshing material. In the sections on military campaigns the 
author has endeavored to give adequate treatment to western 
operations and has tried to balance his account of generals 
and their strategy with a separate chapter on the common 
soldier. Perhaps the most valuable section on the military 
aspects of the Confederacy, however, is the one relating 
to logistics. By a judicious use of monographs and primary 
sources, the author has produced an excellent account of 
success and failure in the fields of ordnance and supply; an 
account which ranges from the concrete gains brought about 
through the efforts of General Josiah Gorgas to the intangible 
aspects resulting from the low esteem accorded to the quar- 
termaster and commissary corps. 

Although the political and military aspects of the Confed- 
eracy occupy the greater portion of the volume there is an 
interesting chapter on society and culture during the war. 
This is interspersed with such items as the role of newspapers, 
the effect of the war on literature, and theatre, music, and 
education, and the activities of Confederate women. As in 
the sections on the military, interest is intensified by the use 
of citations from manuscript and printed letters, journals, and 

428 The North Carolina Historical Review 

diaries. Containing, as it does, much concerning the war's 
effect on the population, the chapter on society and culture 
blends readily into the section on war economy. In his discus- 
sion of the economic disintegration of the Confederacy and 
the inability of the government to mobilize its resources, the 
author has stressed the inevitable conflict that results when 
men imbued with ideas of individualism and laissez faire at- 
tempt to wage a successful war. This theme is continued in 
the chapter so aptly entitled "The Loss of the Will to Fight" 
but even here the author is careful not to overemphasize any 
one factor in depicting the breakdown of Southern morale. 

Professor Eaton has done a creditable job in his use of 
sources. Unfortunately, the volume contains no bibliography, 
but the notes at the end show a reasonable balance between 
manuscripts, monographs, and secondary works of a broader 
nature. The introduction of much new material has not, and 
apparently was not intended to produce any startingly new 
thesis. Its inclusion, however, has added some zest to the 
volume and has at the same time provided an insight into 
the thoughts and reactions of a people living under the im- 
pact of an adverse war. 

Neither in the selection of sources nor in the use of ma- 
terial has the author sought to prove a pet theory or rational- 
ize a particular conclusion. He has done what he set out to 
do; namely, to achieve a balance between various avenues 
of approach to the history of the Confederacy and to depict 
the effects of war on the people and on the society of the Old 
South. Professor Eaton has admitted that circumstances and 
attitudes may have influenced his viewpoint and made him 
unduly sympathetic toward the South. Yet he has tried to be 
objective — and in this he has been eminently successful. 
Among the greatest attributes of the book, in fact, are the 
author's mature reflection and judicious conclusions; factors 
that should prove of value both to the historian and to a large 
segment of the reading public. 

Philip M. Rice. 

North Carolina State College, 


Book Reviews 429 

Brokenburn, The Journal of Kate Stone, 1861-1868. Edited by 
John Q. Anderson. (Baton Rouge: Louisiana State Univer- 
sity Press. 1955. Pp. xxii, 400. $4.95.) 

In editing this volume, Dr. John Q. Anderson has given 
us a fascinating account of the experiences of a young lady 
of a southern plantation home, Brokenburn, of northeast 
Louisiana. Kate Stone was 20 years of age when the war be- 
gan, and, in common with the usual opinion in the South, 
thought the conflict would be soon over due to the bravery 
and daring "of dashing young men" of the South. Her opti- 
mism did not fade till the war moved close to Brokenburn 
in 1863. This Journal gives a vivid insight into the plantation 
life and atmosphere of the Old South. 

By 1863, "Yankees" had overrun the plantation reducing 
the family to want. Kate Stone, with her mother, Mrs. Aman- 
da Stone, and the younger children moved to Lamar County, 
Texas, and later to Tyler, Texas, for two years. Her father 
died before 1861. Her older brothers joined the Confederate 

This book is excellent in enabling the reader to recapture 
the spirit of the Confederacy. For example, Kate Stone on 
hearing of Lincoln's assassination wrote in her Journal, "All 
honor to J. Wilkes Booth, who has rid the world of a Tyrant 
and made himself famous for generations. It is a terrible 
tragedy, but what is war but one long tragedy? What tor- 
rents of blood Lincoln has caused to flow." 

On moving to Texas, Kate's mother set fire to $20,000 
worth of cotton rather than see it fall to the enemy. The fami- 
ly returned to the ruined plantation in the fall of 1865. Two 
brothers were lost in the conflict. 

Kate Stone married Lieutenant Henry B. Holmes in 1869. 
She remained an "unreconstructed rebel" until her death in 
1907. This unpublished Journal went to her daughter, Miss 
Amy J. Holmes, and from her it was secured and edited by 
Dr. John Q. Anderson. 

C. H. Hamlin. 

Atlantic Christian College, 

430 The North Carolina Historical Review 

Rebels and Democrats. By Elisha P. Douglass. (Chapel Hill: The 
University of North Carolina Press. 1955. Pp. xi, 368. $5.00.) 

This book is a well organized and carefully written account 
of the political struggles within the states during the Ameri- 
can Revolution. The theme, as indicated by the sub-title is, 
"The Struggle for Equal Political Rights and Majority Rule/' 
Today the words "radical" and "revolutionary" are apt to be 
used as synonyms but Professor Douglass believes that many 
of the leaders of the revolt of the British colonies were con- 
servative rather than radical. To prove this he shows that 
the making of state constitutions in South Carolina, Mary- 
land, and New York resulted in the establishment of "Con- 
servative Commonwealths." The new constitutions "secured 
the rights which were a primary objective of the Revolution 
and erected barriers against arbitrary government. But these 
constitutions also protected the economic interests and poli- 
tical privileges of the aristocracy. . . ." (p. 54) In New Jer- 
sey, Delaware, Connecticut, Rhode Island, and Virginia the 
conservatives were also victorious. 

Pre-Revolutionary conditions account for the greater 
strength of radicalism in North Carolina, Massachusetts, and 
Pennsylvania. The political theories that justified a more liber- 
al suffrage and majority rule were more generally accepted, 
although only in Pennsylvania did there develop by 1776 a 
"political party devoted to equalitarian democracy which 
was able to take over the administration of government." 
(p. 286) Two brief appendices place New Hampshire and 
Georgia in the group where radicalism had the greater in- 

Although Professor Douglass does not describe the mak- 
ing of a constitution in Virginia, he does discuss at some 
length Jefferson's drafts of a constitution for Virginia and 
his political philosophy as shown in his writings and comes 
to the conclusion that he was a liberal, but "more democratic 
by contemporary standards than by eighteenth century stand- 
ards." (p. 316) The footnotes, conveniently placed at the 
bottom of the pages, and a "Bibliographical Note" at the 
end of the book on the sources available for the study of the 

Book Reviews 431 

political struggles for institutional reform within the states 
are excellent. 

Political theory may not be exciting to the general reader, 
nor does it appeal to as wide an audience as biographical 
and military studies, but the student of political science as 
well as history who is interested not only in what men have 
done, but in what they thought and how it affected their 
actions will find this a book to be read with profit. 

Clara G. Roe. 
University of Akron, 
Akron, Ohio. 

Making Democracy a Reality. Jefferson, Jackson, and Polk. By 
Claude G. Bowers. (Memphis, Tenn. : Memphis State College 
Press. 1954. Pp. xii, 170. $3.75.) 

The addresses, delivered under the auspices of the J. P. 
Young Lectures in American History of Memphis State Col- 
lege are thus described by Mr. Bowers: 1. Thomas Jefferson: 
His Final and Decisive Struggle for American Democracy. 
2. James K. Polk: Why Was He One of the Great American 
Presidents. 3. Andrew Jackson: His Substitution of Party 
Government for Personal Politics. 4. Andrew Jackson: The 
Homeric Battles of His Administration. 

In the addresses on Jefferson and Jackson, Mr. Bowers, 
with his customary effectiveness, vividness, and power, re- 
stated in briefer form his findings on them as the practical 
founders of American democracy, as contained in his well- 
known and more extensive studies of them. They are a finish- 
ed performance, and vary little, except in form and extent, 
from his previous works. They are excellently done, and are 
convincing in relation to the title of the series. 

The inclusion of James K. Polk in the series, however, is 
somewhat puzzling. The contribution of the other two to 
making democracy a reality is entirely clear, but, even grant- 
ing that Polk was "a great President," he still can scarcely 
be accurately said to have performed any special service, 
other than effectively performing his duties as legislator and 
President, towards making democracy a reality. James Madi- 

432 The North Carolina Historical Review 

son would seem to have been a far more important actor in 
the process. It must be said, however, that Mr. Bowers makes 
as strong a case as possible for declaring Polk a great Presi- 

The studies are all interesting in content, and are attrac- 
tive in form, and lighted by the fiery enthusiasm of the author. 

J. G. de Roulhac Hamilton. 
Chapel Hill. 

American Heritage. Edited by Bruce Catton. Volume VI (Feb- 
ruary, 1955), Number 2. (New York: The Heritage Publishing 
Company, Inc. Pp. 120. Single copies $2.95. Annual subscrip- 
tion $12.00 in the United States. $13.00 elsewhere.) 

Variety and human interest in subject matter, profuse and 
sometimes elegant illustrations ( a surprising number of color 
plates), liveliness, and general readability characterize this 
number of American Heritage. This is the second number of 
the new bi-monthly version of this somewhat experimental 
and ambitious publishing venture sponsored by the Ameri- 
can Association for State and Local History and the Society 
of American Historians. If these qualities are maintained 
this magazine, bound and free of advertising like a book, 
may well survive the obviously high cost of publication and 
reader resistance to the price. 

The publishers assume the existence of a wide popular 
interest in the many faceted American social heritage. This 
issue has something in it for everybody's taste. A never be- 
fore published eye-witness account of the hanging of John 
Brown, written by David Hunter Strother, "Porte Crayon," 
for Harpers Magazine, and rejected because the subject 
was controversial, is the lead article. For those who love ships 
and the sea an account of Salem's East Indian trade with 
ten color plates will be the highlight. 

A chapter from the J. Russell Lynes book, The Tastemakers, 
describes how architect Richard Morris Hunt gave "The 400" 
the architecture it liked, costly imitations of European gran- 
deur, and incidentally fathered the American Renaissance 
in architecture. The Iroquois Indians and their extraordinary 

Book Reviews 433 

role in American history appear in "People of The Long 
House." "James Gordon Bennett, Beneficent Rascal" recalls 
a colorful chapter in journalism. 

James Thomas Flexner writes critically of "The Cult of 
the Primitives." He concedes that it might be folk art and 
democracy in art, but questions that the artists should be 
rated above their better trained colleagues. Appropriately 
in the month of Lincoln's birthday Willard King writes "Rid- 
ing on the Circuit with Lincoln," based on the letters of 
Judge David Davis. This is more the story of the Illinois 
frontier a century ago. Fairfax Downey describes the in- 
genuity and resourcefulness displayed by Yankees in the 
capture of Louisbourg in 1745. 

How New York reacted to visiting celebrities in 1851 is 
revealed in an account of a visit by Lola Montez, dancer 
and reputedly friend of King Ludwig I of Bavaria. Particu- 
larly revealing are excerpts from Wilson Brown's book "Aide 
to Four Presidents." He writes at length of presidents Cool- 
idge and Franklin D. Roosevelt, but gives only glimpses of 
Hoover and Truman whom he served for only a short time. 
"A Nosegay of Valentines" add a sentimental touch. The 
volume closes with brief notes and a review section. 

C. W Tebeau. 

University of Miami, 
Miami, Florida. 

Knickerbocker Birthday: A Sesqui-Centennial History of the 
New- York Historical Society, 1804-1954. By R. W. G. Vail. 
(New York: The New York Historical Society. 1954. Pp. xix, 
547. Index and illustrated. $6.00.) 

Founded in 1804 by a distinguished group of New York- 
ers, the New- York Historical Society was the first such or- 
ganization devoted to the collection of materials dealing 
with every aspect of American life. 

Among the more important of its resources might be men- 
tioned the Robert R. Livingston papers, the Nadelman col- 
lection of American folk art, the Naval History collection 
and the Albert Gallatin papers. Its newspaper file, particu- 

434 The North Carolina Historical Review 

larly of eighteenth-century papers, is one of the finest in 
the country, and in its art gallery are some of the most fa- 
mous portraits of eminent Americans. The wealth of excellent 
plates in the present volume gives some idea of the pictorial 
resources of the Society. Of particular interest to read- 
ers of this review would be the Daniel Parish, Jr., collec- 
tion of materials dealing with the Negro, the Civil War and 
Reconstruction, and the Meserve collection of Civil War 

In association with Columbia University, the Society offers 
a seminar course on "Resources and Methods of an Ameri- 
can Historical Society," a project which might profitably be 
emulated by other historical societies. In addition to provid- 
ing scholars with research materials and facilities, the Society 
has pioneered in enriching the artistic and intellectual life 
of the community. By means of documentary films, student 
concerts, travelling historical exhibitions, the use of radio 
and more recently of television, it has extended its services 
and influence far beyond the confines of its building. 

Since the Society has always been privately endowed, its 
financial ups and downs form an important part of the nar- 
rative of its development. Dr. Vail, its present director, has 
succeeded in tracing its growth in a comprehensive, yet en- 
tertaining manner. This sumptuous volume is a fitting tri- 
bute to a century and a half of distinguished service. 

Howard Braverman. 

Brooklyn College, 
Brooklyn, New York. 

The Territorial Papers of the United States. Volume XX. The 
Territory of Arkansas, 1825-1829. Compiled and edited by 
Clarence Edwin Carter. (Washington: United States Govern- 
ment Printing Office. 1954. Pp. vi, 967. $4.25.) 

This selection of material covers the wide variety of gov- 
ernmental activities in Arkansas during four years of its ter- 
ritorial history. As the second in the series pertaining to 
Arkansas, this volume begins with papers during the third 
administration of Acting Governor Robert Crittenden. The 

Book Reviews 435 

four-year span also covers the two terms of Governor George 
Izard and Crittenden's fourth term. 

Matters of major concern in Arkansas during this period 
include surveying the roads and boundaries, supervision of 
Indian agents and Indian affairs, postal matters, and federal 
justice, the chief engineering project was the selection of a 
route for the road from Memphis to Little Rock. Negotiations 
were also being conducted to reach a satisfactory boundary 
between the Indian and white settlements. Differing inter- 
pretations of treaty provisions and the problems of white 
settlements interspersing those of Indians made the loca- 
tion of a boundary very difficult. Food shortages made the 
Indians all the more anxious to have the rights guaranteed 
by treaties. The Postmaster General was constantly con- 
cerned with contractors who failed to maintain their mail 
schedules. Militia lists, census statistics, mail schedules, and 
lists of land tracts for sale are included in limited number. 

Items in this volume are drawn almost entirely from the 
files of the National Archives. The carefully prepared index 
assists the reader in overcoming the difficulty of the chrono- 
logical arrangement of the material. 

The United States Government is doing the historian a 
great favor in making these records so accessible. This com- 
pilation of Arkansas records is welcomed not only as an addi- 
tion to the published documents of this early period but also 
as the result of a careful sifting of the material from more 
than a dozen different departments of the federal govern- 

Paul M. McCain. 

Arkansas College, 

Batesville, Arkansas. 


The Western North Carolina Historical Associations His- 
tory Bulletin began publication in January, 1955. The April 
issue has a number of interesting items: The annual meeting 
of the association was held in Asheville on April 30; the cen- 
tennial celebration of Polk County was held on May 8; the 
Spruce Pine Museum of North Carolina Minerals is expected 
to be opened to the public in the summer of 1955; and the 
town of Franklin celebrated its centennial June 16-18. 

Mr. Clarence W. Griffin, managing editor of The Forest 
City Courier and a member of the Executive Board of the 
Department of Archives and History, was elected president 
of the Western North Carolina Historical Association at its 
annual meeting in the Pack Memorial Library in Asheville 
on April 30. Mr. George W. McCoy, managing editor of the 
Asheville Citizen, was presented the association's cup for the 
"Outstanding Historian" of 1955. 

Mrs. Sadie S. Patton of Hendersonville, also a member of 
the Executive Board of the Department of Archives and His- 
tory, was elected vice-president and Mr. Albert S. McLean 
of Asheville was re-elected secretary-treasurer. 

The association, which has one director from each of the 
23 counties represented in the organization, plus seven at 
large, re-elected all of the directors for another year with 
the following additions: Mrs. Lillian Thomasson of Swain 
County; Mrs. Cameron F. McRae of Yancey County; and Mr. 
Tom Underwood, director at large. 

Dr. Julian C. Yoder, of Appalachian State Teachers Col- 
lege, Boone, read a paper on "The Geographic-Economic 
Development of the North Carolina Mountain Counties Since 
1900," and Mrs. Sadie S. Patton read a paper on "Christian 
Harmony Singing in Western North Carolina." Mr. Clarence 
W. Griffin, retiring vice-president, was in charge of the pro- 

The Thomas Wolfe Memorial Association of Asheville will 
present through the Western North Carolina Historical As- 

[ 436 ] 

Historical News 437 

sociation of Asheville an award to be known as the Thomas 
Wolfe Memorial Trophy to the author of the best work select- 
ed by a committee and announced at the October meeting 
of the latter association, commemorating the birthmonth of 

Mr. Clarence W. Griffin, newly elected president of the 
association, has announced the following as members of the 
awards committee: Mr. Thomas Pearson, chairman, Ashe- 
ville; Miss Annie Westall, Asheville; and Dr. David R. 
Hodgin, Boone. Any member of the committee as well as 
Mr. Griffin may be contacted for rules governing this award. 

The Wayne County Historical Society was organized at a 
meeting on April 7, in the courthouse in Goldsboro, with Mr. 
D. L. Corbitt of the Department of Archives and History as 
speaker. Mr. M. B. Andrews was elected president; Col. 
Hugh Dortch, vice-president; Mrs. C. E. Wilkins, second 
vice-president; Mrs. N. A. Edwards, secretary; and Mr. Bruce 
Duke, treasurer. Directors for the group were named and 
committees appointed to prepare a constitution and by-laws. 
In the second meeting, which was held on May 17, the society 
adopted a constitution and by-laws and the president an- 
nounced the appointment of committees on the following: 
membership, finance, publicity, and program. 

Mrs. Charles Powell was elected historian for the society 
and it was suggested that immediate preparations should be 
made to write a history of the county. Mr. D. L. Corbitt 
again met with the group and assisted them in perfecting 
their organization. Mr. Eugene L. Roberts was named as 
chaplain for the group. The secretary announced that the 
enrollment was 116 annual members and two life members 
and that charter membership would be available until Oc- 
tober 6. The next meeting is to be held on October 20. 

The Sampson County Historical Society was organized on 
April 14 in Clinton with the following elected and installed 
as officers: Mrs. Taft Bass, Clinton, president; Mrs. Charles 
Sloan, secretary: Mr. Leon Daughtry, assistant secretary; 

438 The North Carolina Historical Review 

Mrs. Bob Shields, treasurer; and Mrs. George Williams, as- 
sistant treasurer. Twelve vice-presidents were elected from 
various towns in the county; directors of the society were 
named; and a corresponding secretary is to be appointed in 
each township by the president. 

The Pasquotank Historical Society met at a special lunch- 
eon meeting at the Virginia Dare Hotel in Elizabeth City 
on May 4 to hear an address by the Honorable Lindsay C. 
Warren. Mr. Warren was unable to attend the meeting as 
scheduled due to ill health but his address was delivered 
by tape recorder. He spoke on the significance of Sir Walter 
Raleigh's efforts to colonize what is now North Carolina 
and suggested that a great celebration should be held in 
Dare County in 1985 commemorating the four hundredth 
anniversary of the settling. He further suggested that a 
committee or committees be appointed now for the purpose 
of planning the event. After the luncheon and the address 
those present were invited to the Parish House near the 
hotel where an exhibit of interesting items connected with 
the history of the community and the county were displayed. 
Approximately 120 persons attended the luncheon, many of 
whom were from adjoining counties. 

The Currituck County Historical Society met on April 18 
with Mr. David Stick, author of Graveyard of the Atlantic, 
as speaker. Mr. Stick informed the society that the popula- 
tion of Currituck County is the same today that it was 200 
years ago. He discussed the earliest settlers of the area and 
the geographical changes which have taken place since the 
formation of the county. The second half of the program was 
devoted to an open forum discussion. Mrs. Alma O. Roberts, 
publications chairman, reported that the newspaper of the 
society, The Currituck Record, will soon be released. Officers 
will be elected at the July meeting. There are at present 50 
members of the society. 

The Woman's Club of Murfreesboro, with Mrs. R. H. 
Underwood as chairman, sponsored the first pilgrimage to 
colonial Murfreesboro and the surrounding countryside on 

Historical News 439 

April 16-17. Guided tours were arranged and many of the 
old homes were opened to the public as well as Chowan 
College where special services were held as a part of the 

The April issue of The Gaston County Historical Bulletin, 
official organ of the Gaston County Historical Society, in- 
cluded the following articles: "Lawrence Kiser, Clan 
Pioneer," "Dr. William McLean, Surgeon in the American 
Forces at King's Mountain," and "Cemetery Records of 
Goshen Grove Church." 

Thirty-six persons attended the historical tour on May 15 
in Camden County. The tour, which was arranged by Mr. 
J. F. Pugh, was one of those of the North Carolina Society 
of County and Local Historians. A number of interesting 
historical stops were made and many old homes were opened. 
A picnic lunch served in the Camden High School cafeteria 
and refreshments at the home of Mr. and Mrs. P. P. Gregory, 
the site of the village of the Yawpim Indians, were enjoyed 
by those who attended. 

The Johnston County Historical Society was organized at 
a meeting held in the Johnston County Library on April 2, 
with Mr. D. L. Corbitt of the State Department of Archives 
and History assisting the group. Officers were elected as 
follows: Mr. H. V. Rose, Smithfield, president; Miss Mildred 
Oliver, Pine Level, vice-president; and Mrs. W. B. Beasley, 
Smithfield, secretary. Thirty members joined the society and 
the group decided to accept charter members through May 6. 
Mr. Rose appointed chairmen of the following committees: 
museum, library, publications, church history, war history, 
family history, membership, and program. Every member 
of the society is to serve on a committee and members were 
asked to state a preference. A committee was also appointed 
to prepare a constitution and by-laws. 

On May 20 the society met at the courthouse and adopted 
its constitution and by-laws. Miss Mildred Oliver presided in 
the absence of Mr. Rose, the president. Mr. H. B. Marrow 

440 The North Carolina Historical Review 

and Miss Evelyn Bishop of Smithfield were elected members 
of the board and Mr. James Creech of Four Oaks was elected 
treasurer. The members were assisted by Mr. D. L. Corbitt 
who made a brief talk to the society. 

Restoration of Old Bunker Hill bridge in Catawba County, 
one of the three remaining covered bridges in the state, has 
been completed by the county historical society under the 
leadership of Judge Wilson Warlick. 

On April 12 in Halifax the 180th anniversary of the Halifax 
Resolves was celebrated, with Governor Luther H. Hodges 
as the principal speaker. The occasion was featured by the 
dedication of the restored brick gaol in which the Tory 
prisoners, captured at the Battle of Moore's Creek were 

The State Literary and Historical Association held its 
spring regional meeting in Rocky Mount and Halifax, May 
6-7. The program Friday afternoon was held in the Ricks 
Hotel in Rocky Mount with papers by the following: "The 
History of Nash County," by Mrs. Ruth Jeffreys; "The History 
of Rocky Mount and the Rocky Mount Mills," by Reading 
Bulluck; and "Sidelights of Nash County History," by Wil- 
liam L. Pierce. A tea and tour of the Rocky Mount Mills was 
followed by a dinner with speeches by the following: Mrs. 
W. Gray Williams, "The Tar River and its Place in North 
Carolina History"; Mrs. E. L. Daughtridge, Jr., "Customs 
in Daily Life in Colonial Edgecombe"; and Ray S. Wilkin- 
son, "Rebirth of Historical Interest in the Coastal Plain." 

The meeting in Halifax was held at the Woman's Club 
Building with Mrs. Sterling M. Gary presiding. Papers on 
the historic sites of Halifax were presented. Following a tour 
of the town, a luncheon meeting was held with Ray S. 
Wilkinson presiding. Talks on the progress of the Historical 
Halifax Restoration Association concluded the meeting. 

The North Carolina Civil War Roundtable held its initial 
meeting in Greensboro on March 19, went on a tour of Ben- 

Historical News 441 

tonville Battleground on April 17, and held another meeting 
in High Point recently. 

The Historical Society of North Carolina met in Raleigh 
on May 7. At the afternoon session Dr. Alice Kieth read a 
paper on "William Blount in North Carolina Pol