North Carolina

NC Governor Benjamin Williams 1799 Land Grant, Scarce!

NC Governor Benjamin Williams Scarce 1799 Land Grant

BENJAMIN WILLIAMS, Partially Printed Document Signed, Land Grant to Thomas Pain and Abner Pain, December 6, 1799. For 300 acres in western North Carolina, with attached survey by William Davenport. 2 pp., 16" x 13" and 7.75" x 12.75", professionally repaired.  



“Know Ye That We, for and in consideration of the sum of Fifty Shillings for every hundred acres hereby granted, paid into our Treasury by Thomas Pain and Abner Pain have given and granted, and by these presents do give and grant unto the said Thomas Pain and Abner Pain a tract of land containing Three hundred acres, lying and being in the county of Burke....”



“By virtue of a precept dated July the 25th 1798 No 3406, I Have Surveyd for Thomas Pain & Abner Pain three Hundred acres of land lying on the Waters of the upper little River Begining on a forked White oak William Pain’s & Joshua Purkin’s Corner....”


Historical Background

In 1777 the legislature of the state of North Carolina passed an act allowing the state to take title to all vacant land within its borders. This land had formerly belonged to King George III or the Earl of Granville. In the same year, the legislature also passed an act creating a procedure for selling the land to anyone who had the money to pay the required fees.


Under the process, the prospective purchaser had to identify vacant land and record a claim with the county land office. After a waiting period to allow other potential owners to learn of the claim, the land office issued a land warrant directing the county surveyor to survey the claim. When the survey was complete, the land office sent the land warrant and two copies of the survey to the North Carolina Secretary of State. After the Secretary ensured that the purchaser had paid the State Treasurer the proper fees, he prepared a land grant, which the governor signed, and he attached one copy of the survey to the grant.


In this case, brothers Thomas and Abner Payne entered a claim for three hundred acres of land in Burke County on July 25, 1798; Burke County entry officer Thomas Smith ordered the county surveyor to survey the land on October 25, 1798; county surveyor William Davenport surveyed the property on July 10, 1799; the Treasurer confirmed that the Paynes had paid £7..10 shillings (50 shillings per hundred acres) to the State on November 22, 1799; and Governor Benjamin Williams signed this land grant on December 6, 1799.



Benjamin Williams (1751-1814) was born in North Carolina and served in the North Carolina Provincial Congress. From 1775 to 1781, he served in the 2nd North Carolina regiment, fought at the Battle of Guilford Courthouse (March 1781), and rose to the rank of colonel. He also served in the North Carolina General Assembly in the 1780s and represented North Carolina in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1793 to 1795. In 1799, he won election as governor to fill the unexpired term of William R. Davie, who had resigned, and served for three years. The North Carolina Constitution prohibited an individual from being governor for more than three years in a six-year period. Unsuccessful in a reelection bid in 1805, Williams was selected by the General Assembly as governor in 1807 and served a single one-year term.


William Davenport (1770-1859) was born in Virginia and moved with his father to western North Carolina around the end of the Revolutionary War. He served as justice of the peace, county surveyor, and colonel of militia in Burke County, which he represented in the legislature in 1800. He was a chief founder of Davenport College, established in 1855 in Lenoir, North Carolina, for the education of women by the Methodist Episcopal Church, South.


Thomas C. Payne (1774-1838) and Abner B. Payne (1777-1845) were brothers born in Spotsylvania County, Virginia, who moved to western North Carolina as children in the 1780s.




Item: 65702

Price: $800.00
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