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Perquimans County Images of Estates 1789 to 1827
Pearce or Pears, Joseph;
The Albemarle Colony
Emigration from Virginia into North Carolina commenced as early as 1653 when Roger Greene with a hundred men made a small settlement in the Chowan precinct on the north shore of Albemarle Sound. In 1662 George Durant followed, and began a settlement in the Perquimans precinct, just east of Chowan. In 1664 Governor Berkeley, of Virginia, himself one of the eight lords proprietors, severed this newly settled region from Virginia and appointed William Drummond as its governor. Such were the beginnings of Albemarle, the colony which in time was to develop into North Carolina.
Settling the Cape Fear River
During 1660 a party from New England made a settlement at the mouth of Cape Fear River, but it only lasted three years, until 1633 when they departed. There is a tradition that they were sorely harassed by the natives in revenge for their sending sundry Indian lads and girls aboard ship to be taken to Boston and "educated," i.e. sold for slaves, which is not improbable. They left behind a post at the mouth of the river.
The Clarendon Colony
Sir John Yeamans arrived at Cape Fear early in October of 1663, and ascended the river for more than a hundred and fifty miles. Sir John was the son of a gallant Cavalier who had lost life and estate in the service of the King, and he had come out to Barbadoes to repair his fortunes. His report of the Cape Fear country was so favorable that by the end of May, 1665 he returned with several hundred settlers from Barbadoes, to make the beginnings of the new colony of Clarendon, of which the lords proprietors had appointed him governor.
There is a story that George Washington came to
Hertford on business connected with lands in the Dismal Swamp and may have tarried at the old tavern. It was during a journey through the South in 1791. However, a room was shown as having been his. Diagonally across the street from the Eagle Tavern at the end of the yard enclosing the old Harvey home, there are two great-size stones which are said to mark the grave of a mighty Indian chief. This may have been Chief Kilcokonen, a friend of one of the earliest settlers, George Durant. The town of Hertford saw gunboats coming down the river from the Northern Army, and one brief battle was fought inside the town. One man was killed on each side. The old residents used to boast of how the women, while a skirmish occurred, came out of their homes and cheered on the soldiers. It is said that while this skirmish was taking place that a ball from one of the gunboats on the river went through one of the houses and tore a covering from the bed on which the mistress of the house had just been lying.
Names of Families in Perquimans County Genealogy Records
Perquimans was formed as early as 1668 as a precinct in Albemarle County. It is located in the northeastern section of the State and is bounded by Albemarle Sound and Chowan, Gates, and Pasquotank counties. In 1779 Gates County was formed in 1779 from Chowan, Perquimans, and Hertford. The dividing line between the counties of Chowan, Perquimans, and Gates was authorized to be established in 1805. Later, during 1814 a boundary line between Perquimans, Chowan, and Gates, was amended by naming a new commissioner, which indicated that the line had not been established at that date. Finally, in 1819 a dividing line was established between Chowan and Perquimans Counties.