Tag Archive | Greene County

Culminating Battle of the Tuscarora War, 1713

A painting depicting English settlers and Native Americans locked in battle.
Image from the Native American Encyclopedia.

On March 23, 1713, the Tuscarora Indian stronghold known as Neoheroka fell to colonial militiamen. As a result of the action, 950 Indians were killed or captured.

The conflict was years in the making. As European settlers encroached on Indian land to meet the needs of the growing colony of North Carolina, tensions escalated between the two groups. In 1711, the Tuscaroras, who controlled most of the land between the Neuse and Roanoke Rivers, began a war with the colonists.

In 1713, the government of North Carolina appealed to South Carolina for assistance. That colony sent Colonel James Moore, who marched his combined force of North and South Carolina militia and allied Indians to Neoheroka. He had been informed that the Tuscarora tribe had placed its largest concentration of warriors at a fort there, on a branch of Contentnea Creek in what is now Greene County.

Archaeological investigations of the fort have revealed a series of interconnected bunkers and tunnels supplied by large quantities of provisions. The fort covered an acre and a half and had high palisades.

The fall of Neoheroka signaled the end of concerted Indian resistance to colonists. By the end of the Tuscarora War, about 200 whites and 1,000 Indians had been killed. An additional 1,000 Tuscaroras were sold into slavery and more than 3,000 others forced from their homes.

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Name of James Glasgow Expunged from the Map

The_State_of_North_Carolina_from_the_best_Authorities_c_by_Samuel_Lewis_Engraved_by_Vallance

A circa 1796 map of North Carolina that includes Glasgow County.
Image from the State Archives.

On November 18, 1799, Glasgow County, in eastern North Carolina, was renamed Greene County.

In 1791, Dobbs County was split. Half became Lenoir County, named for Revolutionary War General William Lenoir, and half became Glasgow County, for North Carolina’s first Secretary of State James Glasgow.

Nathanael Greene

Among other duties, Glasgow oversaw the military grant program that awarded land to soldiers who served in the Continental Line during the American Revolution. Warrants for land were easily forged, which led to Glasgow’s downfall.

In 1797, future President Andrew Jackson wrote a letter to the governor exposing the ongoing land frauds. Charges became official, and Glasgow was brought to trial. The jury handed down five indictments; Glasgow pled not guilty.

After ten days in court, Glasgow was found guilty of three charges: issuing a fraudulent warrant; issuing a duplicate warrant with two separate grants on it; and issuing a grant without proper evidence of the assignment. The residents of Glasgow County did not want to be identified with a criminal and the county was renamed Greene, for Revolutionary War hero Nathanael Greene.

While Glasgow’s name disappeared from the map, his misconduct left a lasting mark in North Carolina’s history. The court that tried Glasgow ultimately became the North Carolina Supreme Court.

For more about North Carolina’s history, arts and culture, visit Cultural Resources online. To receive these updates automatically each day, make sure you subscribe by email using the box on the right, and follow us on FacebookTwitter and Pinterest.

Raleigh Broadcaster Tangled with Former First Lady

On May 15, 1950, W. E. Debnam published Weep No More, My Lady, his response to former First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt’s newspaper column earlier that year.

In her nationally-distributed “This Day” column, Mrs. Roosevelt, the liberal stalwart and defender of her husband’s legacy, wrote of her recent visit to North Carolina that she was “not so sure that there are not signs of poverty and unhappiness that will gradually have to disappear if that part of the nation is going to prosper.”

Debnam, a Raleigh native, had spent a lifetime in journalism, including several years at the Standard-Laconic, his family’s weekly in Snow Hill.  During World War II, he covered the war in the Pacific for Raleigh radio station WPTF, tagging each broadcast with “This is Debnam.”

Eleanor Roosevelt eats in Chapel Hill during her February 1950 visit to North Carolina. Image from the North Carolina Collection

After the war he stepped into his news commentary role. First on the radio and then in a widely-circulated 60-page softcover book, he took Mrs. Roosevelt to task. He attributed the South’s weak economy to Sherman’s destructive campaign during the Civil War and to the “tragic era” of Reconstruction. Race relations, Debnam contended, were better in the South than in northern cities.

Debnam’s book reached a ready audience, selling a half-million copies at 50 cents each.

For more about North Carolina’s history, arts and culture, visit Cultural Resources online. To receive these updates automatically each day, make sure you subscribe by email using the box on the right, and follow us on FacebookTwitter and Pinterest.

Neoheroka Falls to Colonial Militia

Neoheroka

On March 23, 1713, the Tuscarora Indian stronghold known as Neoheroka fell to colonial militiamen. As a result of the action, 950 Indians were killed or captured.

As European settlers encroached on Indian land to meet the needs of a growing colony of North Carolina, tensions escalated between the two groups. In 1711, the Tuscaroras, who controlled most of the land between the Neuse and Roanoke Rivers, began a war with the colonists.  In 1713, the government of North Carolina appealed to South Carolina for assistance.  That colony sent Colonel James Moore, who marched his combined force of North and South Carolina militia and allied Indians to Neoheroka. He had been informed that the Tuscarora had placed its largest concentration of warriors at a fort there, on a branch of Contentnea Creek in what is now Greene County.

Archaeological investigations of the fort have revealed a series of interconnected bunkers and tunnels supplied by large quantities of provisions. The fort covered an acre and a half and had high palisades.

The fall of Neoheroka signaled the end of concerted Indian resistance to colonists.  By the end of the Tuscarora War, approximately 200 whites and 1,000 Indians were killed, with an additional 1,000 Tuscaroras sold into slavery and more than 3,000 others forced from their homes.

Other related resources:

For more about North Carolina’s history, arts and culture, visit Cultural Resources online. To receive these updates automatically each day, make sure you subscribe by email using the box on the right, and follow us on FacebookTwitter and Pinterest.

George Washington Makes Nathanael Greene Commander of the Southern Army

Highway marker in Mecklenberg County that honors Nathanael Greene.

On October 22, 1780, General George Washington ordered Major General Nathanael Greene to assume command of the southern army. He assumed command in Charlotte, Dec. 3, 1780.

Born in 1742, Greene was raised in a Quaker household that denounced warfare.  He nevertheless developed a keen interest in military history and tactics as a young man, and was expelled from his Quaker meeting in 1773 for having attended a military parade.  Subsequently joining the local militia, he took an active role in early efforts towards American independence.  At the outbreak of war, Greene moved swiftly through the American ranks, and was promoted to brigadier general in 1775 during the Siege of Boston.

The next year, at the age of 34, he became the youngest officer promoted to major general in the Continental Army.  Greene was one of Washington’s closest confidants and respected commanders throughout the war.  As commander of the Southern Army, he performed remarkably, and proved himself a genius of strategy and logistics.  His command of American forces directly led to the British defeat at Yorktown in 1781, and therefore ultimately to American independence.

Greensboro and Greene County are both named in his honor.

Other related resources:

For more about North Carolina’s history, arts and culture, visit Cultural Resources online. To receive these updates automatically each day, make sure you subscribe by email using the box on the right, and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.