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Moore, Roger

by William S. Price, Jr., 1991

August 1694–1751

Photograph of Roger Moore's tomb at Orton Plantation. Image from Flickr user Rob Friesel.Roger Moore, colonial official, was born in the Goose Creek section of Berkeley County, S.C., one of ten children of the prominent planter James and Margaret Berringer Moore, the stepdaughter of Sir John Yeamans. One of his brothers, James, served as governor of South Carolina. As befitted his station in life, Roger married a daughter of William Rhett, a leader in South Carolina society.

In 1724 Roger Moore began taking a notable interest in development of the Lower Cape Fear region of North Carolina, joining with his brothers, Colonel Maurice and Nathaniel, to seek land grants in the area. By 1727 Roger had accumulated more than seven thousand acres and had built a fine plantation house called Kendall on the Cape Fear River; four years later he owned nearly twenty-five thousand acres. Moore was instrumental in the establishment of Brunswick town and was a staunch supporter of that community in its struggle with Newton (later Wilmington) for supremacy as a port of entry on the Cape Fear. As a member of the royal Council, he engaged in the fierce political intrigue that surrounded this matter in the late 1730s.

Moore held a number of provincial and local offices in the colony. He was assistant justice of the General Court in 1732, a justice of the peace for New Hanover County in 1734, a commissioner for the boundary with South Carolina in 1735, and a member of the royal Council from 1734 until his death. Because of his grand manner and his reputation as a generous host, Moore was often referred to as "King Roger." By 1748 he had built a one-story plantation house called Orton at a magnificent site overlooking the river near Brunswick town. He was buried on the grounds.

At his death in 1751 (his will was probated in May), Roger owned more than 250 slaves and nearly 60,000 acres of land. He was survived by his wife and five children.


J. Bryan Grimes, ed., North Carolina Wills and Inventories (1912).

Lawrence Lee, The Lower Cape Fear in Colonial Days (1965).

William S. Price, Jr., "'Men of Good Estates': Wealth among North Carolina's Royal Councillors," North Carolina Historical Review 49 (1972).

William L. Saunders, ed., Colonial Records of North Carolina, vols. 3–4 (1886).

Additional Resources:

"CSR Documents by Moore, Roger, 1694-1751." Colonial and State Records of North Carolina. Documenting the American South, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. (accessed June 27, 2013).

DeRosset, William Lord "Roger Moore." Pictorial and historical New Hanover County and Wilmington North Carolina, 1723-1938. Wilmington, N.C.: 1938. 26-27. (accessed June 27, 2013).

Image Credits:

Friesel, Rob. "Orton Plantation: tombs." Photograph. Flickr. May 15, 2007. (accessed June 27, 2013).

Origin - location: 


Hi, I'm looking for information on my ancestor Thomas Moore, father of Nathaniel Moore born in 1777 in North Carolina. Thomas was a 'native of South Carolina'. I believe he may be connected with the family of Governor James Moore of South Carolina. Nathaniel migrated to Tennessee, then to Kentucky and finally to Arkansas. Any help you could provide would be greatly appreciated!

Hi Angie,

Thank you for visiting NCpedia and for posting your comment!

A librarian from the State Library of North Carolina's Government and Heritage Library will reach out to you shortly via email.

I also suggest contacting the South Carolina State Library for assistance:

Kind regards,

Molly Goldston, Government & Heritage Library

Good afternoon,

I have begun tracking down my family's history and my great aunt has told me she knows one of our ancestors was a slave whos named was changed to Moore who had runaway. Some years back she had been told to visit Wilimington NC for my information but wasn't able to make it. Are there any further documents associated the plantation he owned? Thank you for your help.


Plantation records were private manuscripts. I suggest looking at University Library special collections and the State Archives to see if they have any papers. Any records such as bills of sale would be located at the State Archives of North Carolina Other records there that can help with research of enslaved ancestors include wills, deeds, county court minutes, tax records, etc. 

Our library may be able to help as well. Feel free to contact us.


Erin Bradford, Government and Heritage Library

I'm researching my Great grandmother Amanda Moore 1876- 1924
I'm searching for her parents mother unknow father C.S. Moore on her death certificate. I think her parents where perhaps slaves on the Orton Plantation
thanks for all of your assistance
always searching!

Hi Teresa! 

Thank you for your comment and for visiting NCpedia! I am forwarding your inquiry to our library's Reference Team so that they can assist you further. A staff member from our library will be reaching out to you via e-mail soon.

Taylor Thompson, Government & Heritage Library

Hi I’m trying to find my families ancestory. I’m trying to find out what my families maiden name was before it was changed to Moore.


Your comment has been sent to our reference librarians. They should be able to assist you. 

Erin Bradford, Government and Heritage Library

Great information-I am tracing my family history. I know there is a connection
between William Moore and a man named Evan Jones(Craven).. I believe Evan married William daughter Ann Moore. I just want to know what slaves from the Moore family she took with her. Also can you help me find a slave ledger for William Moore? and Yes(referring to other comment) to list the finding of graves.


I am sending your comment to our reference librarians who can assist you. 

Erin Bradford, Government and Heritage Library

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