Collection: Trinity College Historical Society

The North Carolina Manumission Society

Perhaps it will be a matter of considerable surprise to many, in fact a majority of the citizens of the State, to know that the anti-slavery sentiment was ever strong enough here to take the form of organized protest and endeavor against the practice of slavery. And they would be still more surprised to know that this was the case in some of our most prominent counties. Nor was this simply the agitation of abolitionists just on the eve of the great war, but it was organized and carried on in the early part of this century. And it would be the occasion for still greater surprise to know that this organization ever reached so prominent a position as to receive such recognition from a similar general American Society, as to be asked to present their views to the general society at Washington. Yet such was the case. The first record we have of this organization is the minutes of the several branches of the “Manumission Society” in Guilford and Randolph counties, which met at “Center Meeting House” July 19, 1816. This name it retained for two or three years; but there seems to have been some discontent with the limited sphere of work which was implied in the name, and after several unimportant changes the name was finally agreed upon and the society became known as the “Manumission...

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Raleigh’s “New Fort in Virginia” 1585

Our many centennial celebrations within the past score of years, culminating in the glories of the 400th anniversary of the voyage of Columbus, have awakened a widespread interest in early American history, and in all the incidents connected with the Genesis of the United States. Patriotic associations, both of men and women, have sprung up throughout the country, whose aim is to encourage research among our annals, and to cherish a spirit of reverence for our historic past. Many, too, are looking anxiously at the possible effect upon our institutions and national character of the dangerous experiment of absorbing into the body politic the heterogeneous elements of all Europe; and the tendency of this trend of thought and study is to emphasize anew the fact of our Anglican origin, and to bring home to us vividly the truth that we owe what we are as a nation to our English blood and traditions. Monuments have been erected to mark various historic spots, and now on the coast of California, where in 1579 anchored the fleet of Sir Francis Drake, in his memorable circumnavigation of the globe–(the next after that of Magellan)-and where his chaplain, Francis Fletcher, held the Anglican service on the shore for the crews and the savage natives-there is rising a large stone cross-a conspicuous landmark as seen from the ocean in bold relief against the sky...

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Fort Hamby on the Yadkin

In March 1865, General Stoneman left East Tennessee, moving by the turnpike leading from Taylorsville, Tenn., through Wautauga county to Deep Gap on the Blue Ridge. On the 26th of March, he entered Boone, N. C., and on the 27th the column was divided, one division under General Stoneman marching towards Wilkesboro, while the other, under General Gillam, crossed the Blue Ridge at Blowing Rock and went to Patterson in Caldwell County, and then joined Stoneman at Wilkesboro. Leaving Wilkesboro on the 31st, General Stoneman moved over into Surry County, going toward Mt. Airy. During the march through this section of the State, Stoneman’s men committed many depredations, and after leaving Wilkesboro a number of the lawless element of his command deserted. Shortly after this a number of men, some deserters from Stoneman’s command and other worthless characters, led by two desperate men, Wade and Simmons, completely terrorized a large portion of Wilkes County by their frequent raids. In order to fully understand the situation, the condition of the country at that time must be taken into consideration. Almost every man fit for military service was in the army, and the country was almost completely at the mercy of the robbers. It was thought after Lee had surrendered and the soldiers were returning home, that these depredations would be discontinued but they were not. These marauders were divided into...

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