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This article is from the Dictionary of North Carolina Biography, 6 volumes, edited by William S. Powell. Copyright ©1979-1996 by the University of North Carolina Press. Used by permission of the publisher. For personal use and not for further distribution. Please submit permission requests for other use directly to the publisher.

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Boggan, Patrick

by Harriet H. Robson, 1979; Revised by SLNC Government and Heritage Library, May 2023

ca. 1725–1817

Boggan-Hammond House, built by Patrick Boggan. Courtesy of the Anson County Historical Society. Patrick Boggan, Regulator and revolutionary patriot, was born at Castle Finn, County Donegal, Ireland, according to tradition. He was the son of Sir Walter Boggan. He was probably in his early twenties when he came to America with his two brothers, Benjamin and James, and a sister, Jane. They appear to have settled first in Maryland, later removing to Virginia, and all finally settling in Anson County. Jane Boggan married Thomas Wade, probably in 1743. Patrick Boggan is first recorded as living in North Carolina when he received a grant for 238 acres of land in Granville County from Lord Granville in 1752. In his deed he was described as "planter," and he signed the document himself.

Boggan married Mary Dobbs, and orphan of considerable wealth, and they had two sons and seven daughters: Benjamin, who married but died young without issue; Patrick, Jr., who married Martha Davidson; Jane, married to Pleasant May; Mary, married to John May; Fannie, married to Jimmy Cash; Peggy, who married Inigo Cash; Eleanor, who married William Hammond; Flora, married to James Pickett; and Lydia, married to Moses Coppedge.

By the time of his children's marriages, Boggan was a large landowner and enslaver in Anson County. With his wealth, he gave land and the rights to continue enslaving people to each of them. Much of his property is still owned by descendants. He also made generous gifts of land to his brother-in-law, Colonel Thomas Wade.

Boggan's name appears in 1768 on a petition to Governor William Tryon from residents of Anson County, complaining about their treatment at the hands of local officials. This affiliation clearly identifies him as a member of the group that came to be known as Regulators.

During the Revolution, Boggan was a captain of militia serving under his brother-in-law, Colonel Thomas Wade. He engaged in several raids against local Tories, sometimes in collaboration with partisan leaders from South Carolina.

The courthouse of Anson County had been located near the South Carolina line when the county was established in 1750, but after the creation of two new counties in the northern and eastern parts of Anson in 1779, agitation began for a more conveniently located county seat. In 1782, Boggan purchased seventy acres of land and donated it for a town to serve that purpose, which soon came to be called simply New Town. At the death of Colonel Wade in 1786, the name Wadesboro was adopted. In 1795, Boggan served the county as one of its justices.

Boggan's will is dated 1801, with a codicil added in 1803, but it was not probated until 1817, the presumed year of his death. At that time he owned more than a thousand acres of land. His last years, following the death of his wife, were spent with his daughter, Eleanor Hammond, in a house in Wadesboro that he had built for her at the time of her marriage. This house is still standing and is the oldest house in Wadesboro.

Additional information from NCpedia editors at the State Library of North Carolina: 

This person enslaved and owned other people. Many Black and African people, their descendants, and some others were enslaved in the United States until the Thirteenth Amendment abolished slavery in 1865. It was common for wealthy landowners, entrepreneurs, politicians, institutions, and others to enslave people and use enslaved labor during this period. To read more about the enslavement and transportation of African people to North Carolina, visit To read more about slavery and its history in North Carolina, visit - Government and Heritage Library, 2023


Anson County records (courthouse in Wadesboro and in N.C. State Archives, Raleigh).

Kate Bennett, "Captain Paddy Boggan and His Times" (mimeographed, n.d., Wadesboro).

Will Boggan, "A History of Anson County" (typescript, North Carolina Collection, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill).

Walter Clark, State Records of North Carolina, 24 (1905).

William L. Saunders, Colonial Records of North Carolina, 7 (1890).

Additional Resources:

"Boggan-hammond House." N.C. Highway Historical Marker K-41, N.C. Office of Archives & History. (accessed April 18, 2013).

Mary Louise Medley, History of Anson County, North Carolina, 1750-1976 (1976)

Catherine W. Bishir and Michael T. Southern, A Guide to the Historic Architecture of Piedmont North Carolina (2003)

W. K. Boggan, “Captain Patrick Boggan,” address delivered at the unveiling of gravestone (n.d.), copy in the marker files, Research Branch, Office of Archives and History

Project, Federal Writers'. North Carolina: A Guide to the Old North State. US History Publishers. (accessed April 18, 2013).

Wadesboro Downtown Historic District, Living Places:

Anson County, North Carolina Visitor's Center:

Colonial and State Records Search, Documenting the American South, UNC Libraries::

"Photograph, Accession #: H.1948.57.10." 1945-1948. North Carolina Museum of History.

United States. Work Projects AdministrationHistorical Records Survey of North Carolina. Anson County Cemetery Survey Records. 1937. (accessed April 18, 2013).

Image Credits:

Boggan-Hammond House, built by Patrick Boggan. Courtesy of the Anson County Historical Society. Available from (accessed April 18, 2013).

Origin - location: