Carolina Charter - 1665

Concessions and Agreements of the Lords Proprietors of the Province of Carolina, 1665

The Concessions and Agreement of the Lords Propryators of the Province of Carolina to and with the adventurers of the Island of Barbados and their associates of England New England the Carribbia Islands and Barmothos to the Province of Carolina and all that shall plant there In order to the selling and planting of the Countye of Clarendine the County of Albermarle and the County which latter is to bee to the southward or westward of Cape Romania all within the Province aforesaid.

1. Impris Wee doe consent and agree that the Governor of each County hath power by the advise of his Councill to depute one in his place and Authority in case of death or removall to continue untill our further order unless wee have commissionated one before.

2. Item That he hath likewayes power to choyce of and to take to him six Councillors at least or twelve at moast or any even Number between six and twelve with whose advise and consent or with at least three of the six or fower of a greater Number all being summoned he is to govern according to the Lymitacons and Instructions following during our pleasure;

3. Item That the chiefe Registers or Secretarys which wee have chosen or shall chuse wee fayling that tree shall chuse shall keepe exact entereyes in faire bookes of all publicke affaires of the said Countyes and to avoyde deceiptes and lawsuits shall record and enter all Graunts of Land from the Lords to the planter and all conveyances of Land howse or howses from man to man, As alsoe all leases for Land howse or howses made or to be made by the Landlord to any tenant for more than one yeare, which conveyance or Lease shalbe first acknowledged by the Grantr or Leasor or proved by the oath of two witnesses to the conveyance or Lease before the Governor or some Cheife Judge of a Court for the time being whoe shall under our hand us grant upon the backside of the said deeds or Lease attest the acknowledgement or proofe as aforesaid which shalbe our grant for the Registers to record the same which Conveyance or Lease soe recorded shalbe good and effectual in Law notwithstanding any other conveyance deede or Lease for the said Land howse or howses or for any part there although dated before the Conveyance deede or Lease soe recorded as aforesaid And the said Registers shall doe all other thing or things that wee by our instructions shall direct and ye Governors Councell and Assembly shall ordaine for the good and wellfaire of the said Countyes;

4. Item That the surveyor Genll that wee have chosen or shall chuse wee fayling that the Governor shall chuse, shall have power bv himself or Deputy to survey ley out and bound all such Lands as shalbe granted from the Lords to the Planters (and all other Lands within the said Countyes &c which may concerne particular men as he shalbe desired to doe) And a particular thereof certifie to the Registers and Surveyors or either of them shall soe misbehave themselves as that the Governor and Councill or Deputy Governor and Councill or the majr pte of them shall finde it reasonable to suspend their Actings in their respective Imployments it shalbe lawful for them soe to doe untill further order from us;

5. Item That all choise of officers made by the Governor shalbe for noe longer time then during our pleasure;

6. Item That the Governors Councillors Assemblymen Secretarys Surveyors and all other officers of trust shall sware or subscribe (in a booke to be provided for that purpose) that they will bare trew allegance to the King of England his heires and successors and that they wilbe faithfull to the Interest of the Lords Propryatrs of the said Province and their heires executors and assignee and evdeavor the peace and wellfaire of the said Province and that they will trewly and faithfully discharge their respective trusts in their respective offices and doe equall justice to all men according to their best skill and judgmt without corruption favor or affection, and the names of all that have sworne or subscribed to be entred in a booke; And whosoever shall subscribe and not sware, and shall vyolate his promis in that Subscription shalbe lyable to the same punishmt that the persons are or may be that have sworne and broken their oathes;

7. Item That all persons that are or shalbecome subjects to the King of England and sware or subscribe allegiance to the King and faithfulness to the Lords as above shalbe admitted to plant and become freemen of the Province and enjoy the freedomes and Immunityes hereafter express until some stop or Contradiccon be made by us the Lords or else by the Governor Councill and Assembly wch shalbe in force untill the Lords see Cause to the Contrary provided yt such stop shall not anywayes prejudice ye right or Continewance of any person that hath beene recd before such stop or order come from the Lords or Genll Assembly.

8. Item That noe person or persons quallifyed as aforesaid within the Province or all or any of the Countyes before express at any time shalbe anywayes molested punished disquieted or called in question for any differences in opinion or practice in matters of religious concernment whoe doe not actually disturbe the civill peace of the said Province or Countyes byt that all and every such person and persons from to time and at all times freely and fully have and enjoye his and their judgements and contiences in mattrs of religion throughout all the sd Province they behaving themselves peaceably and quietly and not using this Liberty to Lycentiousness nor to the Civill Injury or outward disturbance of others, any Law statute or clause conteyned or to be conteyned usuage or custom of this realme of England to the contrary hereof in anywise notwithstanding.

9. Item That noe presence may be taken by us our heries or assignee for or by reason of Or right of patronage and powr of advowson graunted unto us by his Majties Letters pattents aforesaid to infringe thereby ye Genll clause of Liberty of Contience aforemenconed We doe hereby graunt unto the Genll assemblyes of ye sevll Countyes power by act to constitute and appoint such and soe many Ministers or preachrs as they shall thinke fitt, and to establish their maintenance Giving Liberty besides to any person or persons to keepe and mainteyne wt preachers or Ministers they please.

10. Item That the inhabitants being freemen or chiefe agents to others of ye Countyes aforesd doe as soone as this our Comission shall arrive by virtue ot a writt in our names by the Governor to be for ye present (untill our seale comes) sealed and syned make choice of twelve Deputyes or representatives from amongst themselves whoe being chosen are to joyne with him the so Governor and Councill for the makeing of such Lawes Ordinances and Constitutions as shalbe necessary for the present good and welfare of the severall Countyes aforesd but as soone as Parishes Divisions tribes or districcons of ye said Countyes are made that then ye Inhabitants or Freeholders of the sevll and respective Parishes Tribes Divisions or Districcons of the Countyes aforesd doe (by our writts under our Seale wch wee Ingage shalbe in due time issued) annually meete on ye first day of January and chuse freeholders for each respective denizon Tribe or parish to be ye Deputyes or representatives of ye same, which body of Representatives or ye Majr parte of them shall wth the Governor and Councill aforesd by ye Genll Assembly of the County for which they shalbe chosen, the Governor or his Deputy being present unless they shall wilfully refuse in web case they may appoint themselves a president during the absence of the Governor or his Deputy Governor.

Which Assemblyes are to have power.

1. Item To appoint their own times of meeting and to adjorne their sessions from time to time to such times and places as they shall thinke Convenient as alsoe to ascertains ye Number of their Quorum Provided that such members be not less than ye third pte Of the whole in whome or more shalbe ye full power of the Generall Assembly (vizt)

2. Item To enact and make all such Lawes Acts and Constitutions as shalbe necessary for the well Government of ye County for web they shalbe chosen and them to repeale provided that the same be consonant to reason and as near as they may be conveniently agreable to the Lawes and Customes of his Majties Kingdom of England provided alsoe that they be not against ye Interest of us the Lords Propryators our heires or assignee nor any of these our present concessions Espetially that they be not against the Article for Liberty of Contience abovemenconed, which Lawes &c soe made shall receave publication from the Governor and Councill (but as the Lawes of us and our Genll Assembly) and be in force for the space of one yeare and a halfe and noe more; Unless contradicted by the Lords Propryators within which time they are to be presented to us our heries, &c, for our ratification and being confirmed by us they shalbe in continuall force till expired by their owne Limitacon or by Act of Repeale in like manner as aforesd to be passed and confirmed;

3. Item by act as aforesd to constitute all Courts for their respective Countyes, together wth ye Lymitts powers and jurisdictions of ye said Courts as also ye severall offices & Number of Officers belonging to each of the sd respective Courts together with their severall and respective sallerves fees and perquisites Theire appellations and dignities with the penalltyes that shalbe due to them for breach of their severall and respective dutyes and Trusts.

4. Item by act as aforesd to ley equall taxes and assessments equally to rayse Moneyes or goods upon all Lands (excepting the lands of us the Lords Propryators before selling) or persons within the severall precincts Hundreds Parishes Manors or whatsoever other denizens shall hereafter be made and established in ye said Countyes as oft as necessity shall require and in such manner as to them shall seeme most equall and easye for ye so Inhabitants in order to the better supporting of the publicke Charge of the said Government, and for the mutuaall safety defense and security of ye Countyes.

5. Item by act as aforesd to erect within ye said Countyes such see many Baronyes and Manors with their necessary Courts, jurisdiccons freedomes and priviledges as to them shall seeme convenient, as alsoe to device ye sd Countyes into Hundreds Parishes Tribes or such other denizens and districEons as they shall thinke flit and the said Divisions to distinguish by what names we shall order or direct, and in default thereof by such names as they please As also within any part of ye said Countyes to create and appoint such and soe many harbours Creekes and other places for ye convenient ladeing and unfading of goods and merchandise out of shipps, boates and other vessells as they shall see expedient with such jurisdiccons priveledges and francheses to such ports &c belonging as they shall judge most convenient to the genl good of ye said plantacon or Countyes.

6. Item by these enacting to be confirmed as aforesd to erect rayse and build within the sd Countyes or any part thereof such and soe many Forts Fortresses Castles Cittyes Corporacons Borroughs Townes Villages and other places of strenkt and defence and them or any of them to incorporate with such Charters and priveledges as to them shall seeme good and our Charter will permit and the same or any of them to fortifie and furnish with such Proportions of ordinance powder shots Armor and all other Weapons Ammunition and Habillaments of warr both offensive and defensive as shalbe thought necessary and convenient for the safety and welfare of ye sd Countyes, but they may not at any time demolish dismantle or disfurnish the same without the consent of the Governor and the Major parte of the Councill of the County where such Forts Fortresses &c. shalbe erected and built.

7. Item by act as aforesd to constitute trayne bands and Companys with the number of souldiers for the safety strength and defence of the said Countyes and Province and of the Forts Castles Cityes &c to suppress all meutinyes and Rebellions. To make warr offensive and defensive with all Indians Strangers and Foraigners as they shall see cause and to persue any Enemy by sea as well as by land if need be out of ye Lymitts and Jurisdiccons of ye sd County with the perticculer consent of the Governor and under the Conduct of our Leut: Gen: or Commander in Cheife or whome he shall appoint.

8. Item by act as aforesd to give unto all strangers as to them shall seeme meete a Naturalizion and all such freedomes and priveledges within the sd Countyes as to his Majties subjects doe of right belong they swearing or subscribing as aforesd web said strangers soe naturallized and priveledged shall alsoe have the same Imumtyes from Customes as is granted by the Kinge to us and by us to ye said Countyes and shall not be lyable to any other Customes then the rest of his Majties subjects in the sd Counties are but be in all respects accompted in the Province and Countyes aforesaid as the King's naturall subjects.

9. Item by act as aforesd to prescribe ye quantities of land which shalbe from time to time alotted to eavery free or Sarvt male or female and to make and ordaine Rules for the casting of Lotts for Land and [eying out of ye same provided yt these doe not their said prescriptions exceed ye several! proportions which are hereby graunted by us to all persons arriveing in the said Countyes or adventuring theither;

10. Item the Genll Assembly by act as aforesd shall make provision for the maintenance and Support of the Governor and for the defraying for all necessary Charges of the Government as alsoe that the Constables of the respective Countves shall collect the halfe penny per acre payable to ye Lords in theire Countyes and pay ye same to ye receavor yt ye Lords shall appoint to receave the same unless ye so Generall Assembly shall prescribe some other way whereby the Lords may have their rents duely collected wthout charge or trouble to them.

11. Lastly to enact constitute and ordaine all such other Lawes actes and constitutions as shall or may be necessary for the Rood prosperity and setlement of ye said Countyes excepting wt by these pesents are excepted and conformeing to Limitacons herein exprest,

The Governors are with the Councill before exprest:

1. Item to see that all Courts established by the Lawes of ye Genll Assembly and all Ministers and offices Civill or Military doe and execute their severall dutyes and offices respectively according to the Lawes in force and to punish them from swerveing from the Lawes or acting contrary to their trust as the nature of their offence Hall require.

2. Item according to the constitutions of the Genll Assembly to nominate and comissionate the severall Judges, Members and Officers of Courts wheither Majistraticall or Ministeriall and all other civill officers as Justices Coroners &c the Comissions and powers and Privrledges to revoake at pleasure provided that they appoint none but such as are freeholders in the Countyes aforesd unless the Generall Assembly consent;

3. Item according to the constitutions of the Genll Assembly to appoint Courts and officers in Cases Cryminall and to impower them to inflict penaltyes upon offenders against any of ye said Lawes in force in ye said Countyes as ye said Lawes shall ordaine wheither by fine Imprisonment Banishmt corporall punishmt or to ye taking away of member of or Life itselfe if there be cause for it.

4. Item to place officers and soldiers for the safety strenkt and defence of the Forts Castles Cittyes &c according ye number appointed by the Genll Assembly to nominate place and commissionate all military officers under ye dignity of ye Leut: Genll whoe is commissionated by us, over the sevll trayned bands and Companys constituted by ye Genll Assembly as Collonels Capts: &c and theire comissions to revoake at pleasure, ye Leut: Gen: with the advise of his Councill unless some present danger will soe permit him to advize to muster and trayne all ye soldiers wthin the said County of Countyes to presecute warr persue an Enemy suppress rebelions and mewtinies as well by sea as Land and to exercise the whole Millitia as fully as by our Letters patients from the hinge wee can impower him or them to doe Provided yt they appoint noe Military officers but wt are freeholders in the sd Countyes unless ye Genll Assembly shall consent.

5. Item where they see cause after condemnacon to reprieve untill the Case may be presented with a Coppy of ye whole tryall proceedings and proofes to ye Lords who will accordingly rather pardon or comand execution of ye sentence on the offender offender who is in ye meane time to be kept in safe custody till the pleasure of ye Lords be knowne.

6. Item in case of death or other removall of any of the representatives within the yeare to issue summons by writt to ye respective division or divisions for which he or they were chosen comanding the freeholders of ye same to chuse others in their steade;

7. Item to make warrants and to scale Grants of Land according to theis our Concessions and the prescriptions by ye advice of ye Genll Assembly in such forme as shalbe at large set down in our Instrucons to ye Governor in his Comission and which are hereafter expressed.

S. Item to act and doe all other thing or things yt may conduce to ye safety peace and well Government of ye said Countyes as they shall see fitt soe as they be not contrary to ye Lawes of ye Countyes aforesaid;

For the better security of the proprietves of all the Inhabitants.

1. Item they are not to impose nor suffer to be imposed any tax Custome Subsidy Tallage Assessment or any other duty wtsoever upon any Culler or pretenee upon ye sd County or Countyes and the Inhabitants thereof other then what shalbe imposed by ye Authority and Consent of ye Generall Assembly and then only in manner as aforesaid;

2. They are to take care ye land quietly held planted and possessed seaven yeares after its bing first duely surveyed by the Surveyor Generall or his order shall not be subject to any review resurvey or alteration of bounds on wt presence soever or by any of us or any officrs or Ministers under us.

3. Item they are to be taken care yt noe man if his Catle straye range or graze on any ground wthin the sd Countyes not actually appropryated or sett out to particular persons shalbe lyable to pay any trespass for ye same to us our heires &c Provided yt Custome of Comons be not thereby pretended to; nor any person kindred from taking up and appropriating any Lands soe grazed upon and yt noe person purposely doe suffer his Catle to graze on such land.

4. It is our will and desire that ye Inhabitants of the said Countyes and adventurers theither shall enjoye all the same Immunityes from Customes for exporting certine goods from these Realmes of England &c theither as ye Kinge hath been graciously pleased to graunt to us as alsoe for ye Incorragement of the Manufactrs of wine silke oyle ollives fruite almonds &c. menconed in the Dattent have priveledge for bringing them Custome free into any of his Majties dominions for ye same time and upon ye same tearmes as we ourselves may by our Pattent.(2)

1 Text in the Colonial Records of North Carolina. Vol. I., pp. 79 86. (Raleigh, 1886)
2 The remaining articles of the Concessions relate to the distribution of land, land titles, etc.


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