Documenting the American South Logo
Colonial and State Records of North Carolina
Letter from Edmund Porter to Alured Popple
Porter, Edmund, ca. 1685-1737
August 15, 1733
Volume 03, Pages 501-503

-------------------- page 501 --------------------
[B. P. R. O. North Carolina. B. T. Vol. 9. A. 50.]


After waiting four months in Expectation that Governor Burrington would have proceeded agreable to the Directions of my Lords for Trade and Plantations (as you were pleased to signify to me by a letter bearing date the 16th of August last) I am at last constrained in my defence to send over the enclosed Depositions and papers without their being perficted in the manner I could wish all which several Papers, I pray of you to present with my most humble Duty to their Lordships.

After the Despositions of four such creditable persons as Colonel Moseley Mr Chief Justice Smith Mr Ashe and Mr Montgomery it would be needless and impertinent in me to trouble their Lordships with any further Testimony relating to those allegations against Mr Burrington; who has since his arrival here last been guilty of almost every crime saving that of murther and in that he hath bid very fair on the person of the Kings Attorney General. After their Lordships are pleased to perceive the enclosed papers, and give their Judgment thereon I do beseach you Sir (with their permission) to cause the said papers and their Lordships sentiments on the whole to be layd before my Lords Commissioners of Admiralty because it may probably be of great service towards my restoration to the Office of Judge and the vice admiralty here, which Mr Burrington hath maliciously and undeservedly suspended me from, and all because I would not come into his measures relating to the Kings lands &c: which if I had don it might have been a prejudice to the Crown of above five hundred thousand acres of land, about fifty thousand whereof Mr Burrington himself holds (as it is thought) by presents made him from Lovick Little and Foster besides ten thousand acres which he did unjustly acquire by a breach of the Lords Pproprietors Instructions about lands when he was Governour under them in the year 1725, those practices in general I did formerly by three several Memorials intimate to his Grace the Duke of Albemarle New Castle and I prevailed at the same time on Sir Richard Everard when Governor to do the like, as accrodingly he did though afterwards Sir Richard himself fell roundly into the fraude by the instigation of his son R who filled up an old obsolute

-------------------- page 502 --------------------
blank warrant for ten thousand acres of land which warrant had been given to his Father by a brother of mine and although this warrant which was but temperary and preparatory to a better Title) was procured by Sir Richard in 1730 above twenty years after it was issued on and had for many years lain about my brothers house as wast paper yet, so corrupt was those times that upon Sir Richards son filling the same up and giving a bribe of about three hundred pounds our Cur to Mr Little the receiver general there was a pattent procured out of the secretarys office for 10000 acres of the rich Saxapawhaw Lands on the Nor West Branch of Cape Fair River. If young Sir Richard Everard (who has succeeded his Father lately and now in London) be taxed home with this fraud before he hath any previous knowledge thereof I am persuaded notwithstanding his great Tallent of assurance he will not be able to conceal the Truth and if so it will be an argument to induce their Lordships to credit my writings. Mr Burringtons Stagg-park and Burgar Ladds on the North East Branch of Cape Fair River, has also been procured much after the same manner, or rather worse because he was guilty of raceing out and fourging the warrant which procured part of those lands, that is to say, he altered an old Albemarle warrant of 640 acres at 2s 6d per hundred Quit rent into a Bath County purchase warrant of 5000 acres at 6d per hundred Quit rent as can be made appear.

How far I have deserved to be encouraged for endeavouring to detect and discover such fraudes by representing the same in an Early manner to the Secretary of State, is most humbly submitted to the consideration of his Grace the Duke of New Castle and to my Lords for Trade and Plantations.

I am with all difference and due regard Sir, your most obedient humble servant

A List of the papers (in their proper order) herewith Inclosed. vizt:

No 1. Is a deposition of Coll: Moseley principal Treasurer of the Province and now Speaker of our General Assembly.

2. Is the deposition of John Baptista Ashe Esqre a Member of Council by his Majestie's appointment

3. Is the deposition of John Montgomery Esqre Attorney General.

4. Is a Narrative and deposition of E. Porters.

5. A paper proving that the Governor and four of the Council did prejudge me.

6. A further proof and confirmation of that prejudging.

-------------------- page 503 --------------------

7. My Letter to Governour Burrington, advertiseing him him that I did intend to proceed to the taking Deposition agreeable to the directions of the Lords for Trade and Plantation

8. A Paper shewing the great unwillingness of peoples giving Evidence in Matters relating to the Governor who they well know (according to his temper) would Seake revenge if they did.

9. A parcell of Letters tacked together which I formerly received from Governor Burrington; beginning all with Dear Sir, thō he has pretended to the Board of Trade that he knew but little of me &c:

10. The Deposition of Mr Chief Justice Smith.

Signed. E. PORTER.


Recd 1st October 1733.

Read 1st October 1733.