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This article is from the Encyclopedia of North Carolina edited by William S. Powell. Copyright © 2006 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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Land Grants

by David Southern and Louis P. Towles, 2006

Engraving of King Charles II of England, 1736. Image from the North Carolina Historic Sites.Land Grants, or gifts of land to individuals in perpetuity, were instrumental in the growth and development of North Carolina beginning in 1663 with the granting of the first Carolina charter by King Charles II. That charter endowed a great theoretical swath of land from the neighborhood of St. Augustine, Florida, to what became the Virginia line, and westward from the Atlantic Ocean-disregarding French and Spanish claims and the homelands of indigenous nations-all the way to the South Seas (Pacific Ocean). The grantees, the eight Lords Proprietors who had helped restore the Stuarts to the throne of England, shared equal control over the land but were generally ineffectual speculators.

Keep reading >>Important Land Speculators of the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries Keep reading

Educator Resources:

Carolina Charter Lesson Plan, State Archives of North Carolina

Image Credits:

Vertue, George "Engraving, Accession #: S.HSHB.1964.58.1." 1736. North Carolina Historic Sites.