William Churton (1710 – c1767/8) was one of the pre-eminent surveyors in North Carolina during the 18th century. Unfortunately, very little is known about him. He was born in London on April 5, 1710. He was in North Carolina by 1749, but when he arrived is unknown. His professional career in North Carolina predominantly pertained to surveying tracts of land in the Granville District. At the time of his death (late 1767 or early 1768), William Churton had nearly completed a map of North Carolina. Circumstances of Churton’s death and the fate of his manuscript map remain mysteries to us. Continue reading
This post provides an updated cartobibliography for a Bellin map, Carte de la Caroline et Georgie, first published in 1757. William P. Cumming described two states of one plate (Cumming, Southeast in Early Maps, #311). Ashley Baynton-Williams lists one state each for two plates in his Carolina checklist (MapForum #95, #96). Both deserve partial credit. There are, in fact, maps from two separate plates, with one state of Plate 1, and two states of Plate 2.
Determining the origins of unusual place names found on early maps of Carolina is a fun, and perhaps nerdy, exercise. Some, such as Lockwood Folly, have interesting, and sometimes obscure, historical origins. Others, like Murder and Surveyor’s Ferry, have their origin in copying errors by cartographers and/or engravers. What about Reckoned, on the Catawba River at the current site of Fort Mill, SC? Continue reading
The Pocket Atlas Maps of North Carolina published by Mathew Carey, 1796-1820.
Mathew Carey published his first “Carey’s American Pocket Atlas” in 1796. The engraved plate for this map of North Carolina was used in later issues of Carey’s pocket atlas in 1801, 1802, 1805, 1806, and 1810. Updates to the plate appeared with the 1801 and 1805 editions of Carey’s pocket atlas. Continue reading
Happy Birthday, “Mouzon” Map!
Today marks the 240th anniversary of the publication of a map that was not made by Henry Mouzon, Jr. One of the most recognized colonial era maps of North Carolina is the so-called Mouzon map, first published in May 1775. It is a beautifully executed map, entitled An Accurate Map of North and South Carolina with their Indian frontiers, Shewing in a distinct manner [all sorts of neat stuff], the whole from actual surveys by Henry Mouzon and Others. Continue reading
March 15, 2015, marks the 234th anniversary of the Battle of Guilford Courthouse, one of the most pivotal engagements of the Revolutionary War. A series of lectures pertaining to the event is scheduled during the evenings this week, and reenactments and other activities are scheduled for the anniversary weekend, March 14-15. For details of these events, please visit the Guilford Battleground Company. What contemporary maps of the battle survive? Continue reading
George Washington’s upcoming birthday and a recently spotted highway historical marker pertaining to his Southern Tour in 1791 prompted a search for contemporary (to Washington) maps showing the President’s route through North Carolina. What did we find? Continue reading
Discovery of a previously unrecorded proof state
of John Henry’s 1770 Map of Virginia
One of the rarest colonial era maps of Virginia is A new and accurate map of Virginia wherein most of the counties are laid down from actual surveys…by John Henry, published in London in February, 1770, by Thomas Jefferys. Previously published cartobibliographies and descriptions of this map have reported only one known state of the map. Continue reading
Nathaniel Batts: Buried at sea, but not originally
Nathaniel Batts may not have been the first permanent European settler in North Carolina (there is vague evidence that he was not), but he was undoubtedly one of the earliest and best documented. Where is his grave site? Continue reading
Who was/were the alleged surveyor(s)? Continue reading
Several 18th century maps depict Murder in North Carolina. Continue reading
NOTE: The information provided here is supplementary to “Reflecting on the Price-Strother Map of North Carolina: An Uncommon Exercise for an Uncommon Map”, a history of this magnificent map published in the Journal of Early Southern Decorative Arts. There are four NC Map Blog supplements to the MESDA article:
Price-Strother map legal documents (this page, scroll down)
General Assembly Petitions, Committee Reports, and Resolutions Pertaining to the 1808 Price-Strother map of North Carolina: 1790-1799.
These records, listed chronologically, were obtained from manuscript documents in the North Carolina State Archives, Raleigh, NC, and from published journals of the House and Senate. Continue reading