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Province 6f South Carolina, would be a Means of drawing off the Slaves of Carolina, and adding thereby a strength to Augustine.
From these several Considerations, as the Produces to be raised in the Colony did not make Negro Slaves necessary, as the Introduction of them so near to a Garrison of the Spaniards would weaken rather than strengthen the Barrier, and as they would introduce with them a greater Propensity to Idleness among the Poor Planters, and too great an Inequality among the People, it was thought proper to make the Prohibition of them a Fundamental of the Constitution.
When the Trustees had made these Dispositions, and were enabled by Benefactions from several private Persons, on the 3d of October 1732, It was resolved, to send over One hundred and fourteen Persons, Men, Women and Children, beingsuch as were in decayed Circumstances, and thereby disabled from following any Business in England, and who if in Debt had leave from their Creditors to go, and such as were recommended by the Minister, Church-Wardens and Overseers of their respective Parishes. And James Oglethorpe, Esq. one of the Trustees, went with them at his own Expence, to settle them.
On the 24th of the same Month the People were all Examined whether any of them had any Objections to the Terms and Conditions proposed to them, which they all declared they had not, but that they were fully satisfied with them, and executed Articles under their Hands and Seals,,Testifying their Consents thereto, which are now in the Publick Office belonging to the Trustees.
But four of them desiring that their Daughters might inherit as well as Sons, and that the Widows Dower might be considered, the Trustees immediately Resolved, that every Person who should desire the same, should have the Privilege of naming a Successor to the Lands granted to them, who in Case the Possessor should die without Issue Male, should hold the same to them and their Heirs Male for ever; and that the Widows should have their Thirds as in England, with which Resolutions the People being all acquainted, were very well satisfied.
The Trustees prepared Forms of Government, agreable to the Powers given them by their Charter; they Established under their Seal a Court of Judicature for Trying Causes as well Criminal as Civil in the Town of Savannah, (the Name which was given to the first Town to be raised) by the Name and Stile of The Town Court; They also appointed Magistrates there, viz. Three Bailiffs and a Recorder; and inferior Officers, viz. Two Constables and two Tything Men: They Chose for Magistrates such as appeared to them the most Prudent and Discreet, but amongst a Number of People who were all upon a Level at their January, where I lodged them in some new Barracks built for the Soldiers, whilst I went myself to view the Savannah-River. / fixed upon a Healthy Situation about ten Miles from the Sea; the River here forms an half Moon, along the south side of which the Banks are about forty feet high, and on the Top a Flat, which they call a Bluff; the plain High Ground extends into the Country about Jive or six Miles, and along the River side about a Mile. Ships that draw twelve feet Water can ride within ten Yards of the Bank. Upon the River side in the Centre of this Plain, I have laid out the Town, opposite, to which is an Island of very Rich Pasturage, which I think should be kept for the Trustees Cattle; the River is pretty IVide, the Water fresh, and from the Key of the Town you see it's whole Course to the Sea, with the Island o/Tybee, which forms the Mouth of the River, for about six Miles up into the Country. The Landskip is very agreable, the stream being Wide and. bordered with high Woods on both sides. The whole People arrived here on the 1st of February; at Night their Tents tvere got up. Till the 10th we were taken up in unloading, and making a Crane, which I then could not get finished, so took off the Hands and set some to the Fortification and began to fell the Woods. I have markt out the Town and Comn.on, half of the former is already cleared, and the first House was begun Yesterday in the afternoon. A little Indian Nation, the only one within fifty Miles, is not only in Amity, but desirous to be Subjects to his Majesty King George, to have Lands given them among us, and to breed their Qiildren at our Schools; their Chief, and his beloved Man, who is the Second Man in the Nation, desire to be instructed in the Christian Religion.
I am, Gentlemen, fyc. In this Month of April, the Trustees in another Embarkation of seventeen Persons, sent some Italians whom they had procured from Piedmont, in order to promote the Silk Business.
They received another Letter from Mr. Oglethorpe, dated the 20th February, 1732, of which the following Extract gives a further Account of the People and their Situation. "f\ UR People are all in perfect Health; I chose the Situation "" for the Town upon an high Ground, forty Feet per"pendicular above High Water Mark; the Soil dry and sandy, "the Water of the River fresh, Springs coming out from the "sides of the Hill. I pitched upon this Place not only for the "Pleasantness of the Situation, but because from the above"mentioned and other signs, I thought it Healthy; for it is "sheltred from the Western and Southern Winds (the worst in "this Country) by vast Woods of Pine-Trees, many of which i; are an Hundred and few under Seventy Feet high. There
"is no Morse on the Trees, tho' in most parts of Carolina they "are covered with it, and it hangs down two or three feet from "them. The last and fullest conviction of the Healthfulness of "the Place, was, that an Indian Nation who knew the Nature "of this Country chose it for their Situation."
The Trustees endeavoured very early to secure the Friendship of the Indians, who by Ranging thro' the Woods, would be capable of giving constant Intelligence to prevent any Surprize upon the People, and would be a good out Guard for the inland Parts of the Province. For this Purpose they were treated with all possible Candour and Gentleness: They were acquainted, that the English had no Intention to Hurt or Distress them, but would be ready to Assist and Protect them on all Occasions. They received several Presents from the Trustees, and were promised, that if any of the People of Georgia injured them, they should upon their Complaints and proof of it find a ready Redress. For which, in return, the Indians engaged never to take any Revenge themselves, as it might breed ill Blood between the English and them. And as they have since found, that Justice has been always done to them upon proper Complaints, they have been true to their Engagements.
The Indians made a formal and voluntary Cession of that part of the Country to Mr. Oglethorpe for the King of Great-Britain by which a further Right and Title to it was acquired and added to that of the first Discovery and Cultivation; and a Treaty of Friendship and Commerce with them was settled, which was soon after sent over to the Trustees for their Ratification.
In the Month of May 1733, the Trustees sent over six Persons more.
The Number of People sent on the Charity from the beginning to the 9th June 1733, (on which day of the Month the Trustees Accompt is Yearly made up, which is directed to be delivered to the Lord Chancellor and the other Persons named in the Charter) amounted to One hundred and fifty two, of whom One hundred and forty one were Bntons, and Eleven were foreign Protestants, and sixty one were Men.
The Lands granted in Trust this Year in order to be granted out in smaller Portions in Georgia, were the aforesaid five thousand Acres.
The Lands granted within this Year to Persons going at their own Expence, were four thousand four hundred and sixty Acres.
The Money received from Private Persons this \ ear amounted to 3723/. 13s.Id. whereof the Trustees applied2254/. 17s. 9d. of which they exhibited an Account to the Lord Chancellor and the Lord Chief Justice of the Common Pleas, pursuant to their Charter, and carried the Remainder into their succeeding Accompt.
From the 9th June 1733, to the 9th June 1734. IJ Esides the several Works on which the People were employ•*-* ed at Savannah, as Pallisading the Town, Clearing the Place from Pine Trees, fyc. and Building of Houses, some other Works were carried on, viz. a Publick Garden was laid out, which was designed as a Nursery, in order to supply the People for their several Plantations with white Mulberry Trees, Vines, Oranges, Olives, and other necessary Plants. A Gardiner was appointed for the Care of it and to be Paid by the Trustees. A Crane was made for Landing of Goods upon the Bluff"; a Battery raised which Commands the River some distance below the Town, and on the Island of Tybee at the Entrance of the River a Beacon was Erected Ninety Feet high, which has been of great Service not only to the Ships entering the River Savannah, but to those likewise which Sail by the Coast, there being none like it all along the Coast of America.
A Fort was likewise Built at the narrow passages of an inland River (called Ogeechee) in order to Protect the Settlement from any inland Invasion from Augustine. Two little Villages were laid out and settled at about Four Miles distant from Savannah, inland from the River, and a Mile from each other, which were called Hiimpstead and Highgate.
In the Carolina Gazette * dated the 22d March 1732, a further Account was given of the Settlement at Savannah, which was Written by a Gentleman of Charles-Town, who with some others went thither out of Curiosity.
The Parliament having Granted out of Money arisen from the Sale of the Lands at St. Christopher, Ten Thousand Pounds for the further Settling and Securing the Colony, the Trustees resolved to lose no Time in Strengthening it with People, and accordingly in the Months of September and October 1733, they sent over two Embarkations of Persons, whose Numbers are entered at the End of this Years Proceedings, and of whom many were Persecuted Protestants from Saltzburgh.
As very pleasing Accounts of the Country and Settlement were sent from several of the People there to their Friends, the Trustees were informed that some Persons had gone about in several Parts of England offering Money and Land in their Names (but without their Knowledge or Authority) to any who should be desirous of going to Georgia: Therefore they Published an Advertisement in some of the News Papers, in order to prevent the ill Consequences of drawing Laborious People out of the Country with such Expectations, and they declared that they had never given such Power to any Persons whatsoever, and that they never used any Solicitations to induce People to «i) over.