In their political and commercial affairs the colonies felt their connection with the mother country chiefly in its burdens and restrictions, but they found some compensation in the protection which their connection with the British Empire assured them. Their peace and safety were constantly threatened from three allied sources. First there were enemy Indians whose presence was an ever threatening danger. Then the southern colonies in particular were never free from the menace of the Spaniards in Florida for, as Fiske graphically puts it, Carolina was "the border region where English and Spanish America marched upon each other." But greater than the danger from either Indians or Spaniards was the danger from the French. In 1608, one year after the founding of Jamestown, Champlain founded Quebec and secured for France the region drained by the St. Lawrence; in 1682 La Salle, inspired by dreams of a great continental empire, seized the mouth of the Mississippi and established the supremacy of France over all the region drained by the Father of Waters. Between these two distant heads, stretched the vast empire of New France. The interests of New France clashed with those of New England everywhere along their far-flung frontiers, and these clashing interests brought the two colonial empires into a century-long life-and‑death struggle for supremacy in North America. The several stages of this contest were marked by four wars known in American history as King William's War (1689‑1697), Queen Anne's War (1702‑1713), King George's War (1744-1748), and the French and Indian War (1754‑1763).
For North Carolina and South Carolina, the proximity of the Spanish and French settlements held a three-fold danger. There were, first, the danger of a direct attack upon their unprotected coast towns; second, the danger of an indirect attack through the Indians; and, third, the danger of being cut p259 off entirely from farther westward expansion. The two colonies were fully alive to the seriousness of their situation and as we have seen freely assisted each other in meeting it. But they also realized that the menace was not to them alone, but to the whole of British-America and they long sought in vain to impress the home government with this view. St. Augustine afforded the enemy an excellent base for operations against the Carolinas both by land and by sea. In 1686 a Spanish force from St. Augustine invaded South Carolina and destroyed the colony at Port Royal. In 1702, upon the outbreak of Queen Anne's War, South Carolina sent an expedition against St. Augustine, but it ended in disaster. Four years later a combined French and Spanish squadron attacked Charleston, but was beaten off with heavy losses. During these wars, according to Governor Burrington, parties from French and Spanish privateers and men-of‑war "frequently landed and plundered" the coast of North Carolina, and the colony was put to "great expenses" in "establishing a force to repell them." Two of the Lords Proprietors declared, "That in 1707 when Carolina was attacked by the French it cost the Province twenty thousand pounds and that neither His Majesty nor any of his predecessors had been at any charge from the first grant to defend the said Province against the French or other enemies."
It was, however, by their indirect attacks through the Indians that the Spaniards and the French inflicted the greatest losses upon the Carolinas. In 1715 they organized the great Indian conspiracy that resulted in the Yamassee War. These rival and generally hostile tribes, said a group of South Carolina merchants in a petition to the king for aid, "never yet had policy enough to form themselves into Alliances, and would not in all Probability have proceeded so far at this time had they not been incouraged, directed and supplied by the Spaniards at St. Augustine and the French at Moville [Mobile] and their other Neighbouring Settlements." In a letter to Lord Townsend, the king's secretary of state, Governor Craven declared that if South Carolina were destroyed, as at one time seemed not improbable, "the French from Moville, or from Canada, or from old France" would take possession and "threaten the whole British Settlements." The Carolina officials could not make the home government understand that the attack was not merely a local Indian outbreak, aimed at South Carolina alone, but that it was a phase of the general policy of the French in their struggle for supremacy p260 in America and was aimed at all the British American dominions.
Even more serious than these wars, because if successful more permanent in their results, were the French plans in the Mississippi Valley. In a memorial to the Board of Trade, in 1716, Richard Beresford, of South Carolina, called attention to the fact that the French along the Mississippi River had already encroached "very far within the bounds of the Charter of Carolina" and had "settled themselves on the back of the improved part of that Province." If permitted to remain there they would become a permanent obstacle to the westward march of English settlements, confining them to the narrow region between the Atlantic and the Alleghanies. Yet all efforts to arouse the home authorities to a realization of the danger were vain. The Lords Proprietors could not, and as long as the Carolinas remained proprietary colonies, the Crown would not lift a hand in their defence. It was not until after South Carolina, in 1719, had thrown off the rule of the Lords Proprietors, largely because of their inability to aid in the defence of the colony, that the Board of Trade manifested any interest in the situation. In 1720 it advised the king that considering that the people of South Carolina "have lately shaken off the Proprietors Government, as incapable of affording them protection, [and] that the Inhabitants are exposed to incursions of the Barbarous Indians, [and] to the encroachments of their European neighbours," he should forthwith send a force for the defence of that colony. But this advice, like the repeated appeals of the colonies, were unheeded and the Carolinas were left to their own resources.
The home government, however, finally awaked to a realization of the stakes at issue and in the third of the series of wars for supremacy in America undertook to co-operate with the colonies on a large scale. The war really began in 1739 when England declared war on Spain, though France did not formally enter the struggle until five years later. In attacking Spain, England's purpose was to break down the Spanish colonial system and open Spanish-American ports to English commerce. The government accordingly planned to strike a blow at some vital point in Spain's American colonies with a combined force of British and American troops. In the summer of 1740, therefore, the king called upon the colonies for their contingents of men and money. This was the first call ever made upon them as a whole for co-operation in an imperial p261 enterprise, and the colonies responded with enthusiasm. Throughout the summer preparations were actively pushed forward both in England and in America, and in October a fleet of thirty ships of the line and ninety transports, carrying 15,000 sailors and 12,000 soldiers sailed from Spithead, England, for Jamaica, where they were joined by American troops from all the colonies except New Hampshire, Delaware, South Carolina, and Georgia. Delaware's contingent was probably counted in that of Pennsylvania, while those from South Carolina and Georgia were probably kept at home to protect their frontiers from attack by the Spaniards of Florida. The other nine colonies sent thirty-six companies of 100 men each. Of these Massachusetts contributed six, Rhode Island two, Connecticut two, New York five, New Jersey two, Pennsylvania eight, Maryland three, Virginia four, and North Carolina four.
In July, 1740, Governor Gabriel Johnston received instructions from the king directing him to convene the Assembly and inform it of the government's plans. The king declared that he "had not thought fit to fix any particular quota" for the colony as he did not want to place any limitation on its zeal, but he expected it to exert itself in the common cause as much as its circumstances would allow. In reply to the governor's message, the Assembly promised to "contribute to the utmost" of its power and assured him that "no Colony hath with more chearfullness contributed than we shall to forward the intended descent upon some of the Spanish Colonies." This promise was promptly made good. The Assembly passed an act levying a tax of three shillings on each poll in the colony, payable, owing to the scarcity of money among the people, in "commodities of the country" at fixed rates, provided adequate machinery for its prompt collection, and directed that warehouses be erected for storing the proceeds. The governor expressed the "highest satisfaction" at the Assembly's action, saying: "You have now given evident proof of your unfeigned zeal for his Majesty's service and considering the circumstances of the country contributed as liberally as any of our neighbouring colonies." He estimated the levy authorized by the Assembly at £1,200 sterling, which was sufficient to equip and subsist four companies of 100 men each until they could join the army at Jamaica when they would be put on the payroll of the Crown.
The governor's call for recruits brought a prompt response. Four companies containing a total of 400 men, a force p262 in proportion to population equivalent to 25,000 at the present time, were quickly enrolled. "I have good reason to believe," wrote the governor to the Duke of Newcastle, "that we could easily have raised 200 more if it had been possible to negotiate the bills of exchange in this part of the continent; but as that was impracticable, we were obliged to rest satisfyed with four companies." Three of these companies were recruited in the Albemarle section, the other at Cape Fear. The Albemarle companies were under command of Captains Halton, Coletrain, and Pratt, the Cape Fear company under Captain James Innes. The former embarked at Edenton early in November, 1740, and sailed for Wilmington where they were joined by Captain Innes' company. Says the Wilmington correspondent of the South Carolina Gazette, November 24, 1740: "The 15th Inst. Capt. James Innes, with his compleat Company of Men, went on board the Transport to proceed for the General Rendezvous. They were in general brisk and hearty, and long for Nothing so much as a favorable Wind, that they may be among the first in Action. Capt. Innes has taken out Letters of Marque and Reprisal, and if any Spanish Ship is to be met with, he doubts not of giving a proper account of them. * * * The Governor and Assembly of this Province proceeded with great Spirit on this Occasion, the lower House chearfully granted an Aid to his Majesty of £1500 Sterling, to assist in Victualling and Transporting their Quot of troops. When so poor a Province gives such Testimony of their zeal and Spirit against our haughty Enemy, it is to be hoped the Ministry at Home will be convinced that it is the Voice of all his Majesty's Subjects, both at home and abroad, Humble the proud Spaniard, bring down his haughty Looks."
From Wilmington the North Carolina companies sailed directly for Jamaica where they joined the united British and colonial forces. The squadron was under the command of Admiral Edward Vernon; the army was first under Lord Cathcart, and after his death under General Wentworth. Sir William Gooch, then governor of Virginia, was in immediate command of the "American Regiments." In February, 1741, the fleet sailed to attack Cartagena on the coast of Venezuela. From the first the expedition was doomed to failure. Ill-feeling and rivalry between the land forces and the naval forces thwarted every movement. The only successful effort made throughout the campaign was the assault on Boca-Chica (little mouth), the entrance to the harbor of Cartagena. North Carolina p263 troops participated in this attack. The forces were carried, the fleet entered the harbor, and troops were landed to attack the forces defending the town. This attack on the forces was repulsed with severe losses, heavy rains set in, an epidemic of fever broke out among the troops, and within less than two days half of them were dead or otherwise incapacitated for service. Nothing was left but acknowledgment of defeat, re-embarkation and return to Jamaica. The lives of 20,000 men had been sacrificed to the incompetency and jealousy of the commanding officers. Of the North Carolina contingent but few survived. The Cape Fear company, originally 100 strong, reached Wilmington in January, 1743, reduced to 25 men.
North Carolina's losses on this expedition, however, were not comparable to those she suffered at home. For eight years Spanish and French privateers infested her waters, captured her ships, ravaged her coasts, plundered her towns, and levied tribute upon her inhabitants almost with impunity. In May, 1741, they captured two merchantmen out of Edenton "before they had been half an hour at sea," while the owner of one of them "had the Mortification to see his Vessel and Cargo taken before his face as he stood on the shore." Within the next ten days, four other ships fell victims to the same privateers. On May 12th, a sloop bound from North Carolina to Hull, England, was captured off Cape Fear. In July another merchantman was taken "within the Bar of Ocracoke;" the owner estimated his loss at £700 sterling. The same privateer had already taken six other prizes. In August reports from Wilmington mentioned the capture of a schooner and a sloop besides "many other vessels" bound for that port. The Indian Queen, North Carolina to Bristol, was taken in October. Similar reports run through the succeeding years. In June, 1747, it was reported "that there are now no less than 9 Spanish Privateers cruizing on this coast." The Molly, from Cape Fear to Barbados; the Rebecca, from Charleston to Cape Fear; the John and Mary, from Cape Fear to Bristol, "with a Cargo of Pitch, Tar and Turpentine;" and an unnamed vessel from London to Cape Fear, were but a few of their prizes. In July, 1748, three ships were "cut out of Ocracoke Inlet" by Spanish privateers. Of the great majority of captures no reports are now available, but some idea of the havoc wrought in colonial commerce may be gathered from the shipping reports of the South Carolina Gazette. That periodical reported as clearing between Charleston p264 and North Carolina ports during the five years before the declaration of war, 1735‑1739, inclusive, eighty vessels; during the five years, 1744 to 1748 inclusive, the same papers reported as clearing between the same ports only twenty-one vessels.
It is not without interest to note that as the privateersmen revived memories of the deeds of "Blackbeard," so also they made skillful use of the same inlets and harbors that had so often sheltered the famous pirate. "The Spaniards," it was reported, in 1741, "have built themselves Tents on Ocracoke Island; Two of the Sloops lie in Teache's Hole," where they found shelter from the British men-of‑war. After cruising about Chesapeake Bay and ravaging the Virginia coast, says a report in July, 1741, they sought safety from the Hector, a 40‑gun man-of‑war, "in Teache's Hole in North Carolina where they landed, killed as many Cattle as they wanted, and •tallowed their Vessels' Bottoms." Another favorite rendezvous was Lookout harbor "where they wood, water, kill Cattle, and carry their Prizes till they are ready to go (with them) to their respective Homes." Men-of‑war were afraid to seek them in Lookout harbor because of their "Want of Knowledge of it."
Resistance to the Spaniards was feeble and spasmodic. The Assembly made appropriations for the erection of forts at Ocracoke, Core Sound, Bear Inlet, and Cape Fear, but none of them proved of any service. Fort Johnston, named in honor of the governor, afterwards played an important part in the history of the Cape Fear region, but during the Spanish War was ineffective as a defence against the enemy. In June, 1739, before the declaration of war and in anticipation of it, the king authorized Governor Johnston to issue letters of marque and reprisal against Spanish shipping, and a few privateers were fitted out at Wilmington, but the results of their work were negligible. For instance, in July, 1741, Wilmington merchants fitted out two privateers, one of twenty-four guns, Captain George Walker, the other a small sloop, Captain Daniel Dunbibin, "to go in quest of the Spanish Privateers which infest this Coast," but as late as September no news had been received of them. British men-of‑war also patrolled the coast. There were the Hector, forty guns, Captain Sir Yelverton Peyton, the Tartar, Captain George Townsend, the Swift, Captain Bladwell, the Cruizer, and another, name not mentioned, under command of Captain Peacock. But the merchants found grounds for p265 complaining of the lack of vigilance even among the men-of‑war, and it was openly charged that "the Spaniards were so encouraged by the Indolence, if not the C–––––ce [cowardice] of Sir Y–––––n [Yelverton], that they ravaged the coast with impunity. Other British commanders, however, were more active. In July, 1741, Captain Peacock compelled the Spaniards to abandon their shelter at Ocracoke and to burn "the Tents they had built on Ocracoke Island." May 26, 1742, the Swift after an all day chase overtook a privateer off Ocracoke Inlet and engaged her in battle. The privateer, however, got the best of the fight, shot away the mainstays and forestays of the Swift, compelling her to put back into Wilmington for repairs, and then escaped in the darkness. A few months later the Swift had better luck, capturing a large Spanish sloop which she brought into Wilmington and converted into a British privateer.
Emboldened by their success, the Spaniards became ambitious. In 1747 they attacked and captured the town of Beaufort which they held for several days and plundered before being driven out. The next year their audacity reached its climax in an attack on Brunswick. September 3, 1748, three Spanish privateers, the Fortune, a sloop of 130 tons, carrying ten 6‑pounders and fourteen swivels, Captain Vincent Lopez, the Loretta, carrying four 4‑pounders, four 6‑pounders, and twelve swivels, Captain Joseph Leon Munroe, and a converted merchantman, appeared off the Cape Fear bar. Two days later they dropped anchor off Brunswick and opened fire upon the shipping there. At the same time a force which they had landed below the town attacked from the land side. Taken by surprise, the inhabitants fled in confusion. The enemy thereupon seized five ships "and several small craft" that were in the harbor, captured the collector of the port and several other men, and "plundered and destroyed everything without fear of being disturbed."
But the inhabitants quickly recovering from their surprise organized a force of eighty men, under command of Captain William Dry, and returned to the attack. They in turn surprised their enemy in the midst of their plundering, killed or captured many of them, drove the others to the shelter of their ships, and were vigorously "pursuing their good fortunes till they were saluted with a very hot fire from the commodore sloop's great guns, which, * * * however, did not prevent their killing or taking all the stragglers." The Fortune continued the bombardment till suddenly "to our great p266 amazement and (it may be believed) joy, she blew up." Most of her crew, including her commander and all of his officers, perished in the explosion or were drowned. Thereupon, the Loretta, which had gone up the river in pursuit of a prize, "hoisted bloody colours," dropped down the river again, and opened fire "pretty smartly" on the town. But this turned out to be mere bluster. Soon lowering her "bloody colours," she "hoisted white in her shroud" and sent a flag of truce ashore "desiring to have liberty to go off with all the vessels, and promising on that condition to do no further damage." But Captain Dry boldly replied "that they might think themselves well off to get away with their own vessel, that he could not consent to their carrying away any other, and would take care they should do no more damage; but he proposed to let them go without interruption if they would deliver up all the English prisoners they had, with everything belonging to the place." The Spaniard's only answer to this defiance was to abandon all of his prizes except the Nancy, which he had armed and manned with a Spanish crew, and to slip quietly down the river under a white flag. He anchored off Bald-Head and let it be known that he was ready to negotiate for an exchange of prisoners. This was soon effected through a commission sent by Major John Swann who had arrived from Wilmington with 130 men and taken command. The Spaniard then put to sea and disappeared.
In this attack, the Carolinians escaped without the loss of a man. They had two slightly wounded, none killed. Their property losses, however, were heavy for what the Spaniards "did not carry away they broke or cut to pieces." Nevertheless the Carolinians won a great triumph, for as they justly boasted, "notwithstanding our ignorance in military affairs, our want of arms and ammunition (having but 3 charges per man when we attacked them), the delay of our friends in coming to our assistance, and the small number [we] were composed of (many of which were negroes)," they had beaten off a much superior enemy consisting of 220 men and three armed ships, compelling them to abandon their prizes, and causing them a loss of 140 men, more than one-half of their force, including their commanding officer.
The attack on Brunswick was made more than two months after peace had been declared. On June 17, 1748, the Board of Trade wrote Governor Johnston, "Preliminaries for a Peace have been signed at Aix-la‑Chapelle by the Ministers of all the Powers engaged in the war." This treaty, however, p267 settled none of the questions at issue between the rivals in America; it merely afforded them a breathing spell in which to prepare for a greater struggle yet to come. The French, much more alive to the situation than their rivals, began at once to take advantage of this lull in the contest. Realizing that something more than mere assertion of title was necessary to secure to them the territory along the Ohio and the Mississippi, which formed so large a part of New France, they built a series of strong forts to connect the two distant heads of their empire. By the middle of the eighteenth century, therefore, the long frontier between Montreal and New Orleans was defended by more than sixty forts. Many of these forts stood on land claimed by New York, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and the Carolinas, yet in these colonies, only a few people clearly appreciated the significance of the French movements, or understood how to check them. The most significant of the English counter-movements was the organization in London and Virginia of the Ohio Land Company for planting English settlements on the east bank of the Ohio River. But this region was also claimed by the French and it was here that the first clash came. In 1753 Governor Robert Dinwiddie of Virginia learning that the French were encroaching upon this territory sent Major George Washington on his famous mission to demand their withdrawal. Upon their refusal, Dinwiddie ordered Washington to seize and fortify the point where the Alleghany and Monongahela rivers unite to form the Ohio. But Washington had scarcely begun his work when a superior force of Frenchmen appeared, drove him away and erected on the site he had chosen a strong fortress which they called Fort Duquesne. Thus began the great war which was to decide the mastery of North America.
In this contest the English had the advantage of numerical strength and interior lines, but these advantages were fully offset by the unity of command and purpose which prevailed with the French. From Quebec to New Orleans, all New France moved in obedience to a single autocratic will. The English on the other hand were divided into thirteen separate governments, politically independent of each other, and largely self-governing. Not a soldier could be enrolled, not a shilling levied in any English colony until a popular assembly had been persuaded of its wisdom; and no concerted movement could be undertaken until many different executives had been consulted and many different legislative bodies, jealous of their authority and hostile to every suggestion that p268 conflicted with their local interests, had given consent. The French of course were aware of this situation and counted it as one of the strong elements in their favor. "The French," observed Governor Dinwiddie, in 1754, "too justly observe this want of connection in the Colonies, and from thence conclude (as they declare without reserve) that although we are vastly superior to them in Numbers, yet they can take and secure the Country before we can agree to hinder them." He thought that an act of Parliament might be necessary to cure the evil. The necessity for co-operation was clearly understood in England and the government urged it upon the colonies in almost every dispatch that crossed the Atlantic. In July, 1754, President Rowan of North Carolina received a rebuke from the government because of his "total Silence upon that part of His Majesty's orders which relate to a concert with the other Colonies." But except among a few far-sighted leaders no sentiment existed in any of the English colonies in favor of a closer union. In 1754, at the beginning of the great war, the colonies rejected with scant ceremony the Albany Plan of Union which, especially as a war measure, had many excellent features to recommend it.
The attitude of North Carolina toward the Albany Plan was typical of the attitude of the other colonies. Governor Dobbs laid it before the Assembly at its December session in 1754 and asked for its consideration saying that the king had instructed him "to promote a happy union among the provinces for their General Union and Defence." But the Assembly was not interested in it. It merely ordered the plan to be printed and distributed among its members "for their Mature Consideration," but postponed discussion to the next session and then forgot it. Other colonies gave it even less consideration. The colonies had to drink deep of the cup of bitter experience, of suffering and disaster, before they were ready for a real union.
In another respect, too, the French had an advantage over the English. The French settlements were little more than military outposts, garrisoned by trained soldiers, fully equipped with the best arms, and commanded by experienced officers. The English colonies on the other hand were industrial and agricultural communities, thoroughly non-militaristic and almost wholly unprepared for war. Here again the situation in North Carolina was typical. Although that colony had just gone through the Spanish War in which its troops had been defeated, its coasts ravaged and its towns plundered, p269 the lessons of that experience had been lost upon both governor and people. Not a fort protected its long frontier, and the money appropriated for defences along the coast had been largely unspent. No fortifications had been erected at Ocracoke, Lookout, or Topsail Inlet. At Cape Fear, Fort Johnston was still unfinished and almost totally unmanned. Though the plan called for sixteen 9‑pounders and thirty swivels, the fort contained only five 6‑pounders and four 2‑pounders, and had no regular garrison.
Preparations for offense were no better. On paper the militia numbered more than 15,000 infantry and 400 cavalry, but long neglect had destroyed its organization. President Rowan complained in 1753, that from the indolence of Governor Johnston, the militia had fallen into decay. One of the first acts of Governor Dobbs upon assuming the administration in 1754 was to call for a militia return. The result was alarming. There were twenty-two counties each of which was supposed to have a fully organized regiment. The returns showed that in most of them there were organizations in name only, and in many not even that. Beaufort had no colonel. In Bertie County eight companies were "without officers." Five of Edgecombe's fourteen companies reported their captains "removed, laid down, or dead." Every one of Granville's eight companies was without a captain. In New Hanover the major had "thrown up" his commission. In Orange the colonel had resigned, five captains had left the county or refused to serve, fourteen lieutenancies and ensigncies were vacant. Tyrrell reported: "The Coll. dead, the Lieut. Coll. and Major have neglected to act." Four counties made no returns.
The disorganization was bad, the equipment worse. Governor Dobbs stated that the militia were "not half armed" and that such arms as they had were "very bad." Great was his alarm upon finding "that there is not one pound of [public] gunpowder or shot in store in the Province, nor any arms;" nor were there "twelve barrels of gunpowder in the Province in Traders hands." He felt compelled to appeal to the king for ammunition because "at present we have no credit and must pay double price if any is imported by merchants." He afterwards learned that Beaufort County had on hand fifty pounds of public gunpowder. Beaufort also reported 150 pounds of large shot, but "no arms in the publick store." Chowan had 400 pounds of bullets and swan shot, but no powder and no arms. The militia of Johnston County were "indifferently p270 armed," and without ammunition. Bladen, Carteret, Duplin, Edgecombe, Granville, New Hanover, Northampton, Onslow, Pasquotank, Perquimans, Tyrrell, all reported "no arms," or "no arms or ammunition." Six counties made no report on arms and ammunition, probably because they had none. In Granville County the men were drilled with wooden clubs! The situation was somewhat relieved by a gift from the king, in 1754, of 1,000 stand of arms which were distributed to the exposed counties on the western frontier, to the counties on the coast, and to the companies raised for service in Virginia. But even this relief was largely nullified by the conduct of the troops in Virginia, who, after Braddock's defeat, "deserted in great numbers," taking their arms and equipment away with them.
Currency Issued During French and Indian War
Anticipating hostilities with the French, the king in August, 1753, instructed the governors of all the English colonies "in case of Invasion" to co-operate with each other to the fullest extent. Immediately after the attack on Washington, therefore, Governor Dinwiddie hastened to call upon the governors of Pennsylvania, New York, Maryland, New Jersey, Massachusetts, South Carolina, and North Carolina for assistance in driving the French from Fort Duquesne. President Rowan, then acting-governor of North Carolina, met his Assembly February 19, 1754, and laid the situation before it. He felt sure, he said, that the people of North Carolina would not "sitt still and tamely see a formidable forreign Power" p271 dispossess the English of their western territory, and he asked the Assembly to exert itself "to the utmost in the common cause" by voting at once "a good and seasonable supply" for the support of a military force to assist in the expulsion of the French and their allies. His appeal found a ready response. The Assembly declared that the action of the French "must fire the Breast of every true Lover of his Country with the warmest Resentments" and "certainly Calls for a speedy Remedy." It promised "to furnish as many forces as we can conveniently spare towards this so necessary an Expedition" and "to consider of such ways and means Immediately to supply the Treasury as the Circumstances of our Constituants will admitt" for their maintenance.
The Assembly acted promptly and liberally. Without a dissenting vote it appropriated £12,000 "for raising and providing for a regiment of 750 effective Men to be sent to the Assistance of Virginia." President Rowan did not expect the maintenance of these men to fall upon North Carolina after their arrival in Virginia, so when he ascertained later that each province must maintain its own soldiers, he realized that the £12,000 would be insufficient to support 750 men. Accordingly he was compelled to reduce the force to 450 men. But even this number was 150 more than Virginia raised for the same expedition although it was for the defence of her own soil. The regiment was placed under command of Colonel James Innes who had commanded the Cape Fear company in the Cartagena expedition. Governor Dinwiddie hailed his appointment with great satisfaction, saying to President Rowan, "I am glad Your Regiment comes under the Command of Colo. Innes, whose Capacity, Judgment and cool Conduct, I have great Regard for." He testified to the sincerity of his sentiments by appointing Innes commander-in‑chief of the expedition. Colonel Innes hastened at once to the front, leaving his regiment to follow. He arrived at Winchester, Virginia, July 5th, two days after the defeat of Washington's Virginians at Great Meadows; thence he hurried on to Wills Creek, where he afterwards built Fort Cumberland, •140 miles from Fort Duquesne, and there took formal command of the colonial forces.
North Carolina's response to Virginia's appeal for aid was liberal, but her liberality was nullified by extravagance and bad management. President Rowan fixed the pay of privates at three shillings a day and that of officers in proportion, an p272 extravagance of which Dinwiddie very justly complained because of its effect on the Virginia troops who received only eight pence a day. Rowan also invested large sums in pork and beef to be sent to Virginia and sold for Virginia currency with which to pay the troops after their arrival in that colony, and on most of these transactions he lost heavily. The organization of the regiment proceeded slowly and this delay too added to the expense. Consequently the £12,000 appropriated by the Assembly was entirely expended before the troops ever reached the front, and when they arrived at Winchester, the place of rendezvous, they found that no provisions and no ammunition had been collected there for them. Their pay, too, was in arrears. Colonel Innes appealed to Governor Dinwiddie for advances, but Dinwiddie had no funds which he could use for this purpose. "I can give no orders for entertaining your regiment," he replied, "as this Dominion will maintain none but their own forces." Consequently the North Carolina regiment had scarcely reached Winchester before it was disbanded and sent home without having struck a blow at the enemy.
That the struggle had opened so unfavorably for the English was due primarily to their lack of preparation and of co-operation. In October, 1754, therefore, Governor Dinwiddie, Governor Horatio Sharpe of Maryland, and Governor Dobbs held a conference at Williamsburg to formulate plans for a joint attack on Fort Duquesne. Dobbs laid these plans before his Assembly in December and asked for men and money to carry them into execution. The Assembly responded by authorizing a company of 100 men for service in Virginia and another of fifty men for service on the North Carolina frontier, and by voting £8,000 for their subsistence. The company destined for Virginia was placed under the command of the governor's son, Captain Edward Brice Dobbs, formerly a lieutenant in the English army. But before the plans of the Williamsburg conference could be carried out, they were superseded by others on a much larger scale, arranged in April, 1755, at a conference held at Alexandria, Virginia, between several of the colonial governors and General Edward Braddock, who had been sent from England to take command of the forces in Virginia for the reduction of Fort Duquesne. These new plans called for simultaneous campaigns against the French on the Ohio, on the Niagara, and on Lake Champlain. Although North Carolina was not represented at this meeting, p273 both governor and Assembly entered heartily into the arrangements. Captain Dobbs was ordered to move his company at once to Alexandria where Braddock was assembling a force for the expedition against Fort Duquesne. Three months later all British America was thrown into consternation by the disastrous ending of this expedition. Dobbs' North Carolinians, being absent at the time from the main army on a scouting expedition, escaped destruction, but many of them, sharing the general demoralization of the British forces, deserted and made their way back home. With what remained Captain Dobbs joined Colonel Innes at Fort Cumberland, where he continued for nearly a year helping to guard the Virginia frontier.
Immediately after Braddock's defeat, Governor Dobbs convened the Assembly in special session and in a sensible, well-written address pointed out the seriousness of the situation and suggested that "a proper sum cheerfully granted at once will accomplish what a very great sum may not do hereafter." The Assembly promptly voted a supply of £10,000 and authorized the governor to raise three new companies "to protect the Frontier of this Province and to assist the other Colonies in Defence of his Majesty's Territories." To command these companies, the governor commissioned Caleb Grainger, Thomas Arbuthnot, and Thomas McManus captains and sent them to New York to aid in the operations against the French at Niagara and Crown Point. At the same time he ordered Captain Dobbs to withdraw his company from Fort Cumberland and join the other North Carolina companies in New York. Captain Dobbs, promoted to the rank of major, was appointed to command the battalion. The governor declared that he took this action because he found that if Captain Dobbs' company remained in Virginia it would only do guard duty on the frontier, without making any attempt against Fort Duquesne, since the English there had no officers competent to make a plan of operations, nor any artillery; nor was there any likelihood of any assistance from either Maryland or Pennsylvania, "as they don't seem Zealous for the Common Cause of the Colonies." The North Carolina troops arrived at New York May 31st, and shared in the disasters which resulted in the loss of Oswego and the failure to wrest Crown Point from the French. Since the capture of Oswego threw open to the enemy the entire English frontier from New York to Georgia, problems of home defence so strained p274 the resources of the colony that North Carolina was unable to continue to support her troops in New York; the governor accordingly directed their officers to try to induce the men to enlist either in the Loyal American Regiment, or in the regulars. Those who took neither course were allowed to return to North Carolina.
After the loss of Oswego, the Earl of Loudoun, commander-in‑chief of the British forces in America, notified the southern governors to prepare for the defence of their frontiers since the French then had free access by the Great Lakes to send troops to the Ohio, and also to attack them through their Indian allies. The situation was so serious that he called a conference at Philadelphia, March 15, 1757, of Dobbs, Dinwiddie, Sharpe, and Denny of Pennsylvania, that he might "concert in Conjunction with them a Plan for the Defence of the Southern Provinces." He informed the governors that since the greater part of the British troops in America would be needed in the northern campaign, he could give the southern colonies only 1,200 regulars, for the rest they would have to shift for themselves. It was agreed, therefore, that they should raise 3,800 men, distributed as follows: Pennsylvania 1,400, Maryland 500, Virginia 1,000, North Carolina 400, and South Carolina 500, making with the regulars, 5,000 men. Of these, 2,000 men were to be used in defence of South Carolina and Georgia which were threatened with attack by sea as well as by land. Returning from this conference, Dobbs immediately convened the Assembly, and in a brief and pointed message explained the agreement he had made for the province and asked for the means to carry it out. The Assembly promised, in spite of the large debt already contracted in the common cause, to vote the necessary supplies. An act was accordingly passed appropriating £5,300 and providing for 200 men "to be imployed for the service of South Carolina or at home in case not demanded or wanted there." These troops were speedily raised and ordered to South Carolina under command of Colonel Henry Bouquet, the British officer assigned to command in the southern colonies. At the same time, Governor Dobbs ordered the militia in the counties along the South Carolina border to be ready to join Colonel Bouquet at his command without waiting for further orders from him. However, they were never called upon for active service.
The summer of 1757 was one of the gloomiest in the annals p275 of the British Empire. Success everywhere crowned the arms of France. In Europe disasters followed each other so rapidly, and some of them were so disgraceful, that Lord Chesterfield exclaimed in despair, "We are no longer a nation!" In America, Braddock's army had been destroyed; Oswego had fallen, the Crown Point expedition had failed; Fort William had been captured. New France "stretched without a break over the vast territory from Louisiana to the St. Lawrence,"1 and not an English fort or an English hamlet remained in the basin of the St. Lawrence, or in all the valley of the Ohio. In the wigwams of the red men the prestige of the British arms had been so utterly destroyed that the Indians called Montcalm, "the famous man who tramples the English under his feet."2 But a change was at hand. In July, a new force came into the contest which was destined to wrest from France every foot of her American empire and assure to men of the English-speaking race complete supremacy on the continent of North America. This force was the genius of William Pitt, "the greatest war minister and organizer of victory that the world has seen."3 Under his leadership the year 1758 was as glorious as that of 1757 had been gloomy. In every quarter of the globe the arms of England were victorious. In Europe and in Asia victory followed victory with dazzling rapidity. In America Louisburg fell, Fort Frontenac surrendered, and Fort Duquesne was captured. "We are forced to ask every morning," wrote Horace Walpole, "what new victory there is, for fear of missing one."
The Assembly of North Carolina had quarreled with Dobbs, but the words and spirit of Pitt inspired it, "notwithstanding the indigency of the country," to renewed efforts in support of the war. On December 30, 1757, Pitt called upon the province, together with other southern colonies, for a force to reduce Fort Duquesne. He appealed to their pride and patriotism by declaring that he would not "limit the Zeal and Ardor of any of His Majesty's Provinces" by suggesting the number of troops for it to raise, but asked each for "as large a Body of Men * * * as the Number of its Inhabitants may p276 allow." The North Carolina Assembly, pleading as its excuse for not doing more that the colony's debts incurred in defense not of itself alone, but also of Virginia, New York, and South Carolina, amounted "to above forty Shillings each Taxable," which was "more than the Currency at present circulating among us," voted an aid of £7,000 and 300 men. It requested that these troops be sent to General John Forbes, whom Pitt had sent to Virginia to command the expedition, "without loss of time." Governor Dobbs placed this battalion under the command of Major Hugh Waddell, a young officer whose services on the North Carolina frontier had already attracted wide attention. Waddell raised, organized, and equipped his battalion with dispatch, and marched them to join the forces of General Forbes.
Very different was Forbes' course from that of Braddock. No foolish boastings of the superior prowess of British regulars, no equally foolish contempt for the prowess of his foe, no scorn of his provincial troops and their officers, no neglect of the principles of frontier warfare, betrayed him to his ruin. Among his colonial troops Hugh Waddell and his Carolinians stood high in his esteem. Waddell, wrote Governor Dobbs, "had great honour done him being employed in all reconnoitering parties; and dressed and acted as an Indian; and his Sergeant Rogers took the only Indian prisoner who gave Mr. Forbes certain intelligence of the Forces in Fort Duquesne upon which they resolved to proceed." The reference to Sergeant Rogers is to the following incident. Winter had set in and the British general, with his army in a mountainous region, ill prepared to pass the winter in such a wilderness, or to lay a winter to a strongly fortified fort, and without accurate information of his enemy's force, was in a dilemma whether to retire to a more favorable position for the winter, or to push on. He therefore offered a reward of £50 to any one who would capture an Indian from whom information as to the enemy's situation could be obtained. Sergeant John Rogers, of Waddell's command, won this reward by bringing in an Indian who told Forbes that if he would push resolutely on, the French would evacuate Fort Duquesne. The British commander followed the red man's advice. Upon his approach, the French garrison fled, and Fort Duquesne, dismantled and partially destroyed, fell without a blow into the p277 hands of the English general who immediately renamed it Fort Pitt, because as he said in a letter to Pitt, "it was in some measure the being actuated by your spirit that now makes me master of the place."
The victories of 1758, together with the fall of Quebec in 1759, moved the French as a serious factor in the war and brought peace with them in sight. But the war was not at an end for the colonies still had to reckon with the Indians. In the North the confederated tribes under Pontiac continued to make war on the English, while in the South the Cherokee warriors who had acted as allies of the British against Fort Duquesne returned from that expedition to arouse their tribe to hostilities. In 1755 they could call to arms more than 2,500 warriors. Besides the Cherokee, the two Carolinas had also to reckon with the Catawba who had, in 1755, about 250 warriors. Both Cherokee and Catawba were nominally friends of the English, but for several years the French had been undermining the English influence with such success that at the outbreak of the French and Indian War the preference of the Indians for the French was but thinly veiled and nothing but policy prevented their joining forces with their new friends. The English were fully aware of this situation and took immediate steps to hold both nations to their allegiance.
The outbreak of war on the Ohio was accompanied by manifestations of hostility by the Carolina Indians. In December, 1754, therefore, the Assembly provided for a company of rangers for the protection of the frontier. Governor Dobbs entrusted this work to Hugh Waddell, a young Irishman, not yet twenty-one years of age, and but recently arrived in the province, who was, wrote Dobbs, "in his person and character every way qualified for such a command, as he was young, active, and resolute." The governor's choice was fully justified by the results. The young officer acted with energy in raising and organizing his company, and was soon scouting on the frontier where his presence tended to keep the Indians quiet. It soon became evident, however, that a larger force and some permanent forts would be necessary. In the summer of 1755, therefore, Governor Dobbs visited the western settlements to study the situation. He was on this tour when he received information of Braddock's defeat. Hastening to New Bern, he convened the Assembly, September 25, and in a forceful address set forth the defenceless condition of the province, p278 the growing influence of the French over the Cherokee Indians, and the necessity for prompt action to defeat their schemes. Besides sending aid to New York this Assembly ordered that a fort be erected on the North Carolina frontier. The execution of this work was entrusted to Captain Waddell who, selecting a site "beautifully situated in the fork of Fourth Creek, a Branch of the Yadkin River about •twenty miles west of Salisbury," erected there a fort which he named in honor of the governor. In 1756 a committee of the Assembly, of which Richard Caswell was a member, after an inspection reported that the fort was "a good and substantial Building" and that its garrison of forty-six men appeared to be well and in good spirits.
Besides his military duties, Captain Waddell was charged with diplomatic duties. In February, 1756, as the representative of North Carolina he was associated with Peyton Randolph and William Byrd, representatives of Virginia, in negotiating an offensive and defensive alliance with the Cherokee and Catawba nations. The noted chief, King Haiglar, represented the Catawba and Ata‑kullakulla the Cherokee. Ata‑kullakulla was one of the most remarkable Indians of whom we have any record. Bartram, the eminent botanist and traveller, described him as a man of small stature, slender build and delicate frame, but of superior abilities. Noted as an orator and a statesman, he was "esteemed to be the wisest man of the nation and the most steady friend of the English." The treaties signed by these representatives stipulated that the English should build three forts within the Indian reservations to protect them against the French while the Cherokee were to furnish 400 warriors to aid the English in the North. Accordingly South Carolina built Fort Prince George at Keowee on the headwaters of the Savannah and Virginia built Fort Loudoun on the Little Tennessee at the mouth of the Tellico. It fell to North Carolina to build a fort for the protection of the Catawba, but Captain Waddell had scarcely begun work on it, on the site of the present town of Old Fort, when he was ordered to stop as the Catawba had repented of their agreement and desired that no fort be built among them. The Cherokee also became alarmed when a garrison of 200 men was sent to Fort Loudoun, which Major Andrew Lewis of Virginia was building, and their great council at Echota ordered the work stopped and the garrison withdrawn, p280 saying plainly that they did not want so many armed white men among them. Even Ata‑kullakulla was now in opposition to the English. Dispute the treaties, therefore, the situation was highly unsatisfactory and there were strong grounds for believing that several murders along the Catawba and Broad rivers in North Carolina were the joint work of "French Indians" and Cherokee.
Nevertheless, the Cherokee, in accordance with their agreement, sent a considerable body of warriors to aid the English against Fort Duquesne. This policy of calling in the aid of Indians in military affairs was to say the least always of doubtful wisdom; in this case its disastrous. The trouble began in the spring of 1756 with an expedition which Major Andrew Lewis undertook against the hostile Shawano on the Ohio, with 200 white troops and 100 Cherokee. The expedition ended in disaster. Some of the Cherokee returning home having lost their own horses, captured some horses which they found running loose and appropriated them to their own use. Thereupon the Virginia frontiersmen fell upon them, killing sixteen of their number. At this outrage the hot blood of the young warriors, who were none too friendly to the English at the best, flared up in a passion for immediate revenge. The chiefs, however, counseled moderation until reparation could be demanded of the colonial governments in accordance with their treaties. But Virginia, North Carolina, and South Carolina all refused to take any action in the matter. While the women in the wigwams of the slain warriors were wailing night and day for their unavenged kindred, and the Creeks, who were in alliance with the French, were taunting the Cherokee warriors with cowardice for submitting so tamely to their wrongs, came news of the fall of Oswego and other English disasters in the North. The Cherokee thirst for revenge was now mingled with contempt for English arms, and the young men could no longer be restrained. They fell upon the back settlements and spread terror far and wide until Governor Dobbs sent sufficient reinforcements to Captain Waddell to enable him to check the ravages of the enemy.
Thus the situation remained throughout 1757 and 1758. Murders by the Indians followed by prompt reprisals by the whites kept both in a state of constant suspicion. While they were in the inflammable state of mind, 150 Cherokee warriors were sent to join the English in defence of the Virginia p281 frontier. They were unruly and dangerous allies, being, as Governor Dinwiddie said, "a dissatisfied set of people." The capture of Fort Duquesne, November 25, 1758, merely accentuated the danger, for the French driven from the Ohio immediately concentrated their intrigues upon the tribes on the Tennessee and the Catawba. Depredations on the back settlements by "French Indians" became more and more frequent, and their influence over the Cherokee became daily more apparent. In May, 1759, both the Carolinas were alarmed by reports of "many horrid murders" committed by the Lower Cherokee along the Yadkin and the Catawba. In July came another report of murders in the vicinity of Fort Dobbs by bands of Middle Cherokee. The white settlers, in great alarm, were abandoning their homes and "enforting themselves," some in Fort Dobbs, others among the Moravians at Bethabara. Governor Dobbs hastily withdrew sixty men from Fort Granville at Ocracoke and Fort Johnston and sent them with some small cannon to the defence of the West with orders to cooperate with the militia of Orange, Anson and Rowan counties. Hugh Waddell, promoted to the rank of colonel, was again sent to Fort Dobbs to take command on the frontier. He had scarcely reached his post when he received orders to hasten to the aid of Governor Lyttleton of South Carolina who was conducting an expedition against the Lower Cherokee, but while on the march with his rangers and 500 militia, he was halted by an express from Governor Lyttleton who had made peace with the enemy.
This peace, however, was of short duration. No sooner had Lyttleton withdrawn his forces from Fort Prince George than Oconostota, the young war chief, who had suffered personal injuries at the hands of Governor Lyttleton, attacked the fort after treacherously murdering its commanding officer. War immediately broke out along the whole frontier. On the night of February 27, 1760, the dogs at Fort Dobbs by "an uncommon noise" warned Colonel Waddell that something unusual was going on outside. Investigation showed that the fort was surrounded by Cherokee warriors. After a hot fight Waddell beat them off with serious losses. Another band preparing for a night assault on Bethabara was frightened away by the ringing of the church bells. Still others laid waste the settlement at Walnut Cove. Across the mountains, Oconostota laid to Fort Loudoun. In June, 1760, a relief p282 expedition under Colonel Archibald Montgomery, consisting of 1,600 Scotch Highlanders and Americans, penetrated the Cherokee country as far as Echoee, near the present town of Franklin, where in a desperate engagement with the Cherokee, June 27, 1760, Montgomery was defeated and compelled to retreat to Fort Prince George. His retreat sealed the fate of Fort Loudoun. The garrison after being reduced to the necessity of eating their horses and dogs capitulated on the condition that they be allowed to retire unmolested with their arms and sufficient ammunition for the march, leaving to the enemy their remaining warlike stores. Unfortunately the commanding officer, Captain Demeré, failed to carry out these terms in good faith and the Indians discovering his breach of the treaty fell upon the retreating soldiers, killed Demeré and twenty-nine others and took the rest prisoners.
Harrowing reports of atrocities and butcheries, which continued to spread throughout Virginia, North Carolina, and South Carolina, aroused those colonies to a grim determination to put an end to the power of their ruthless foes. A campaign was accordingly planned in which the three colonies were to have the assistance of Colonel James Grant and his regiments of Scotch Highlanders. In June, 1761, Grant assembled at Fort Prince George an army consisting of regulars, colonial troops, a few Chickasaw Indians and almost every remaining warrior of the Catawba, numbering 2,600 men. Refusing Ata‑kullakulla's request for a friendly accommodation, Grant pushed rapidly forward into the Cherokee country along the trail followed the previous year by Montgomery, until he came within •two miles of Montgomery's battlefield. There on June 10th he encountered the Cherokee upon whom he inflicted a decisive defeat. He drove them into the recesses of the mountains, destroyed their towns, burned their granaries, laid waste their fields, and "pushed the frontier •seventy miles farther to the west." The Cherokee, compelled to sue for peace, sent Ata‑kullakulla to Charleston where he signed a treaty that brought the war to an end. In the meantime, Virginia troops had invaded the country of the Upper Cherokee and on November 19th at the Great Island of Holston, now Kingsport, Tennessee, forced them to sign a treaty independently of the middle and lower towns. These blows broke the power of the Cherokee, who were never again strong enough to stay the westward march of the white race.
p283 Although the fall of Quebec definitely decided the contest as between France and England, peace between the two powers was not signed until 1763. By this treaty France and Spain ceded to England all their North American possessions east of the Mississippi River. The probable effect on the Indians of the removal of their French and Spanish allies from this region was a problem which gave the British government serious concern; and to allay any possible suspicion and alarm which it might occasion among the southern tribes, the king instructed the governors of Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia to hold a conference with them at Augusta, Georgia, and explain to them "in the most prudent and delicate Manner," the changes about to take place. This congress met November 5, 1763. Present were Lieutenant-Governor Francis Fauquier of Virginia, Governor Arthur Dobbs of North Carolina, Governor Thomas Boone of South Carolina, Governor James Wright of Georgia, John Stuart, Indian agent for the Southern Department, twenty-five chiefs and 700 warriors of the Chickasaw, Choctaw, Creek, Catawba, and Cherokee nations. Six days of oratory and feasting resulted in a treaty of "Perfect and Perpetual Peace and Friendship" between the Indians and the English, which provided for mutual oblivion of past offenses and injuries, the establishment of satisfactory trade relations, the punishment by each party of offenders of its own race for crimes against members of the other race, and the fixing of the boundaries of the Indian reservations. On November 10th the four governors and the Indian agent, on part of the king, and the twenty-five chiefs, on part of their tribes, signed the treaty. The event was celebrated by the bombing of the guns of Fort Augusta and the distribution among the Indians of £5,000 worth of presents sent them by King George.
While these events were transpiring on the frontier, French privateers were busy along the coast. Immediately after the declaration of war, using French and Spanish ports in the West Indies as bases, they began to appear off the Carolina coast and to reenact the scenes of the Spanish War. The defenseless state of the coast gave them ample opportunity for carrying on their work. On one occasion, "for want of a Fort to defend the entrance and Channel" of the Cape Fear, "the Privateers seeing the masts of the Ships at anchor in the road within the Harbour, over the sandy Islands, went in and p284 cut out the ships and carried them to Sea." Such coast fortifications as had been constructed were "Incapable of Defence for want of Artillery," which both governor and Assembly vainly begged the home government to supply, but some protection to shipping was afforded by American privateers. A few, sailing under letters of marque and reprisal issued by Governor Dobbs, were fitted out at Wilmington and Brunswick. In the spring of 1757 the brigantine Hawk, armed with 16 charge guns and 20 swivels, manned with 120 men, Thomas Wright captain, and the sloop Franklin, armed with 6 carriage guns and 10 swivels, manned with 50 men, Robert Ellis captain, sailed out of Cape Fear River. Some months later came a report that the Hawk sailing into "a French port in Hispaniola" had taken there "a pretended Danish Vessel with 135 Hogsheads of Sugar [and] 30 Barrels of Coffee." Occasionally, too, a British man-of‑war cruising off the coast, would look in at Cape Fear and other North Carolina ports. But they were not as assiduous as they might have been in the performance of their duty. On March 22, 1757, Governor Dobbs declared that H. M. S. Baltimore, which was supposed to be stationed at Cape Fear, had not been at her station three weeks all told since his arrival in North Carolina; and at another time he charged that her captain spent the winter months at Charleston because there were "no balls or entertainments" at Cape Fear. It is not surprising, therefore, that merchants complained that "notwithstanding our great superiority in the West Indies," French privateers had captured seventy-eight English and American vessels, some of which were wonder by North Carolina merchants, and carried them as prizes to Martinique. But after 1757 the navy like the army coming under the spell of Pitt's genius, began to display greater zeal and activity in running down the enemy. Captain Hutchins, H. M. S. Tartar, reported in June, 1759, that during a cruise of three days off Ocracoke he had neither seen near of a French privateer. Three months later, Wolfe's triumph at Quebec put an end to privateering in American waters.
News of the fall of Quebec reached Brunswick October 24th. "Our Governour upon this occasion," wrote the Brunswick correspondent of the South Carolina Gazette, "ordered a tripple discharge of all the cannon at this town and Fort Johnston, all the Shipping displayed their colours and fired 3 p285 rounds; and yester evening was spent in an entertainment at his excellency's in illuminations, bonfires and all kinds of acclamations and demonstrations of joy. Today's rejoicings are repeated at Wilmington."
The war had borne heavily on North Carolina both in men and money. It is impossible to say how many soldiers the colony raised as no accurate returns exist, indeed, none were ever made. At various times, however, the Assembly authorized the recruiting of more than 2,000 men and there is no reason to suppose that they were not enrolled; there were indeed probably more for many a settler took down his musket and went forth to war on the frontier whose name was never entered on any muster roll. Nor does this number include the militia who were called into active service but of whose service no records exist. More than half of the 2,000 provisionals authorized by the Assembly were sent into service in other colonies. Of North Carolina's financial contributions, more accurate information is available. On November 24, 1764, Treasurer John Starkey reported to the Assembly that since 1754 the colony had issued £72,000 of proclamation money, current as legal tender at the rate of four for three of sterling. Of this amount, £68,000 were still in circulation in 1764. The Assembly also issued for war purposes treasury notes bearing interest at 6 per cent to the amount of £30,776, of which in 1764 £7,000 were still out. The war, therefore, had cost North Carolina £102,776, of which £27,776 had been paid, leaving a debt of £75,000. Reckoning the population at 130,000, the public debt contracted in support of the war amounted to upwards of 15s per capita. For the redemption of this war debt the Assembly levied a tax of 4s on the poll and a duty of 4d a gallon on spirituous liquors. During the war Parliament appropriated £200,000 to reimburse all the colonies for their expenditures, and an additional £50,000 for Virginia, North Carolina, and South Carolina. A quarrel between the governor and the Assembly over the control of this fund resulted in North Carolina's receiving only £7,789 from both funds which certainly was much less than her just share.
Over against the colony's losses and expenditures, however, may be placed the benefits resulting from the expulsion of the French from her western territory and the removal of the Cherokee from the path of her westward expansion. To these material results must be added the even greater moral p286 benefits, viz., the breaking down of many of the barriers of local prejudices due to her former isolation and the germination of a sense of her common interest and common destiny with the rest of British America which, like the other colonies, she brought out of her experience in this first continental event in American history.
1 Green: Short History of the English People. Revised edition, p748.
2 Parkman: Montcalm and Wolfe, Vol. I, p489.
3 Fiske: New France and New England, p315.
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