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The Burgwin Family Private Papers

 Collection
Identifier: SC-MS-013

Scope and Contents

These papers are photocopied typescripts of New Hanover County, NC Deed Book and Will Book records and private letters, copied by Elizabeth McKoy of Wilmington, NC. The deed abstracts are occasionally accompanied by sketches of the area described in the deed. Some of this research material was in Elizabeth McKoy’s book, Early New Hanover County Records, published in 1973.

These deeds describe land that eventually evolved into the Hermitage and Castle Haynes Plantations. There is also a typescript of an 1803 sale notice of the Hermitage and other of John Burgwin's real properties, that was published in the Wilmington Gazette. A print of the Hermitage as it appeared in the early 1800s is included in this group of papers.

Another typescript of a newspaper article is the death notice of Capt. John H.K. Burgwyn, son of George W.B. Burgwyn, as published in the April 21, 1847, Chronicle of Wilmington. This article uses the different spelling of Burgwin which was adopted by one branch of the family.

This spelling was also noted in a magazine article by James G. Burr, entitled "Historic Homes. THe Hermitage, Burgwin's Seat." This history of the Hermitage was published in the November, 1886 issue of The Magazine of American History.

There are also typescripts of seven letters, all written by Mary (Haynes) Waddell, wife of General Hugh Waddell, who lived at Belle Font, in Bladen County. One was from her mother, Mrs. Haynes, wife of Capt. Roger Haynes; the others are from her sister, Margaret Burgwin, wife of John Burgwin. These letters were written in 1764, 1768 and 1770.

Dates

  • 1734-1967 (photocopies)

Creator

Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for research use.

Copyright Statement

Copyright retained by the authors of items in these papers, or their descendants, as stipulated by United States copyright law.

Historical Note

These papers are photocopied typescripts of New Hanover County, NC, Deed Book and Will Book records and private letters, copied by Elizabeth McKoy of Wilmington, NC. The deed abstracts are occasionally accompanied by sketches of the area described in the deed. Some of this research material was in Elizabeth McKoy’s book, Early New Hanover County Records, published in 1973.

These deeds describe land that eventually evolved into the Hermitage and Castle Haynes Plantations. There is also a typescript of an 1803 sale notice of the Hermitage and other of John Burgwin's real properties, that was published in the Wilmington Gazette. A print of the Hermitage as it appeared in the early 1800s is included in this group of papers.

Another typescript of a newspaper article is the death notice of Capt. John H.K. Burgwyn, son of George W.B. Burgwyn, as published in the April 21, 1847, Chronicle of Wilmington. This article uses the different spelling of Burgwin which was adopted by one branch of the family.

This spelling was also noted in a magazine article by James G. Burr, entitled "Historic Homes. THe Hermitage, Burgwin's Seat." This history of the Hermitage was published in the November, 1886 issue of The Magazine of American History.

There are also typescripts of seven letters, all written by Mary (Haynes) Waddell, wife of General Hugh Waddell, who lived at Belle Font, in Bladen County. One was from her mother, Mrs. Haynes, wife of Capt. Roger Haynes; the others are from her sister, Margaret Burgwin, wife of John Burgwin. These letters were written in 1764, 1768 and 1770.

The Rev. Richard Marsden purchased land from the Lords Proprietors of the Province of Carolina, that eventually became known as the Hermitage and Castle Haynes plantations, located about eight miles north of Wilmington, N.C. Prior to his arrival in Wilmington, Marsden served as chaplain to the Duke of Portland and, as such, accompanied him to Jamaica, where the duke was appointed its Governor. Leaving Jamaica, Marsden went first to Charleston, S.C., and then to Wilmington, where he officiated for several years as rector of St. James Parish.

Marsden's only daughter married Captain Roger Haynes and had two daughters, Margaret and Mary. Margaret married John Burgwin who, by family settlements, owned both Castle Haynes and the Hermitage plantations. John Burgwin was a leading merchant of Wilmington, carrying on extensive trade with Bristol, England. He was also for some time, the Treasurer of the souther half of the Province before the Revolution.[1]

Mary Haynes married General Hugh Waddell in 1762 and settled at his plantation, Belle Font, in Bladen County, situated about two miles below Elizabethtown, N.C. Upon Waddell's marriage, he joined John Burgwin in business in Wilmington, the firm being John Burgwin & Co., with branch establishments in the back country.

Waddell was almost continuously in service in the French and Indian wars for nearly twenty years [2] as well as serving as a magistrate, Assemblyman, and Justice of the Peace[3]. Waddell also commanded the Brunswick militia and, as such, led the citizens of Wilmington and the surrounding area in 1766 in their demands that the Stamp Act be annulled in North Carolina. They were successful.

In 1768, Waddell visited England and Ireland. This trip is alluded to in letters to Mary Waddell from her sister, Margaret. Margaret wrote of ships arrivals from England and the prices of food and goods brought over on these ships, and mentioned in John Burgwin's trips to Newbern, N.C. for assembly meetings.

Waddell again set forth for England in the fall of 1772, but became ill and returned home before sailing. He signed his will on November 10, 1772, but lingered on until April 9, 1773. He died at the age of 39. He was buried at Castle Haynes, as was his wife a few years later. They had three sons: Hugh, John, and Haynes, who died while yet a boy[5].

In these papers is a typescript of a petition dated January 10, 1783, by Hugh and John Burgwin Waddell and John Burgwin (their uncle and John Waddell's guardian). They requested that Gen. Waddell's estate be divided between Hugh and John Waddell in a manner agreeable to both of them, and that was that Hugh should have the Castle Haynes plantation and John the houses and lots in Wilmington plus 600 pounds from Hugh to make the inheritances of equal value.

John Burgwin's only daughter, Caroline, married Dr. George Campbell Clitherall of the U.S. Army, in 1802[6]. In these papers will be found a deed of gift to George Campbell Clitherall from John Fanning Burgwin and George W. Burgwin of one-third share of Castle Haynes' 3,000 acres.

George W. Burgwin's son, Captain John H.K. Burgwin/BUrgwyn, of the First Regiment of the U.S. Dragoons, was killed in the war with Mexico. He died on February 7, 1847, and was eventually interred in Oakdale Cemetery, Wilmington, N.C. In this typescript of his death notice published in the April 21, 1847, Wilmington Chronicle, both spellings of Burgwin are found.

In James G. Burr's article "Historic Homes: The Herimate, Burgwin's Seat" (a xerographed copy is in this group of papers), the subject of these spellings arises. Burr, however, uses the "i" in Captain John H.K. Burgwin's name and the "y" in Colon Harry King Burgwyn, a grandson of John F. Burgwin, and in a footnote Burr explains that this branch of the family had made a change in spelling[7].

The "y" is again found in the News and Observer December 17, 1967, article about N.C. Superior Court Judge William Hyslop Sumner Burgwyn. Burgwyn was a lawyer, jurist, and bank president of the Farmers Bank of Woodland[8]. This article was written when Burgwyn was 88 years old and still active as both a judge and a bank president.

An innocently prohetic note, undated and unsigned, was written on Mary Waddell's letter from her mother, Mrs. Roger Haynes: "I found this amongst some of your father's letters and I send it to you, as I dare say you may remember the persons they will carr you back to old times Do not return them who will trace our letters so many years to come."

A point of interest in the deed records in this group is the date at which the names Bath County and Prince George('s) Creek are used. Powell's North Carolina Gazetteer says of Bath County, that thought it divided into precincts which by 1712 evolved into Craven, Beaufort and Hyde Counties, it continued to be referred to in records as late as 1724 as Bath County. It also states that New Hanover County was formed from Craven in 1729[10]. Yet, as late as 1735, these deeds continue to use Bath County when describing land located in New Hanover County.

Of the Prince George Creek, Powell notes that it "appears in local record as early as 1744, hence probably named for Prince George (1738-1820), who became George III in 1760"[11]. However, the first five records in this group mention Prince George('s) Creek as a boundary and all were contracted before 1744, beginning with the first in 1734-- four years before Prince George's birth.

[1] Waddell, Alfred Moore. A History of New Hanover County and the Lower Cape Fear Region. 1723-1800. Wilmington, NC 1909. p.53

[2] Ibid. pp.53-54

[3] Waddell, Alfred Moore. A Colonial Officer and His Times, 1754-1773: A Biographical Sketch of Gen. Hugh Waddell, of North Carolina. Raleigh, NC: Edwards & Broughton, 1890. pp.192-200.

[4] Ashe, Samuel A'Court. History of North Carolina. Vol. I. From 1584 to 1783. Greensboro, NC: Charles L. Van Nappen, 1908. Reprinted by The Reprint Company, Spartanburg, S.C., 1971. pp.321-325.

[5] Waddell, Alfred Moore. A Colonial Officer and His Times, 1754-1773: A Biographical Sketch of Gen. Hugh Waddell, of North Carolina. Raleigh, NC: Edwards & Broughton, 1890. pp.192-200.

[6] Burr, James G. "Historic Homes: The Hermitage, Burgwin's Seat." The Magazine of American History. Vol. XVI, No. 5, 1886. pp.433-442. p.439.

[7] Ibid. pp.441-442

[8] Powell, William S. North Carolina Lives. Hopkinsville, Kentucky: Historical Record Association, 1962. pp.186-187.

[9] Powell, William S. The North Carolina Gazetteer. Chapel Hill, NC: University of North Carolina Press, 1968. p.26.

[10] Ibid. p.348.

[11] Ibid. p.396.

Extent

1.00 Folder (Contains 1 folder)

Language

English

Acquisition Information

This collection was donated by Elizabeth McKoy.

Processing Information

Originally processed by Judith H. Davis in 1976. In 2014, this manuscript collection was re-foldered and re-housed with current archival standard materials by Christine Hockaday. Caroline Waller completed additional processing on this collection in Spring 2021.
Title
The Burgwin Family Private Papers
Status
Completed
Author
Judith H. Davis
Date
1976
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
English
Script of description
Latin
Language of description note
English

Repository Details

Part of the Randall Library Special Collections Repository

Contact:

910-962-7462