North Carolina Office of Archives & History Department of Cultural Resources
Historical Publications Section The Colonial Records Project
Jan-Michael Poff, Editor
Historical Publications Section
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Last Updated 05/21/01


Josiah Martin and His Search for Success: The Road to North Carolina


[Vol. 53 (1976), 55-79]

During the bicentennial celebration of the birth of the nation, North Carolinians will be reminded of the many patriots in their state who helped create the United States of America. It could be argued that the last royal governor of North Carolina, Josiah Martin, also made a genuine contribution to the nation. As the crown’s representative, Governor Martin provided a convenient and accessible symbol of tyranny for the North Carolina patriots by his actions, which further stimulated them to revolt.

The purpose of this essay is to answer questions concerning Martin’s origins, his education, and the experiences that brought him to New Bern and to the office of the royal governor of the province of North Carolina.

As England expanded into the Atlantic world and prospered, so did the fortunes of the gentry families which staffed the bureaus, held colonial offices, and provided officers for the British armed forces. This was especially true of the Martin family. Its coat of arms declared the family devotion to the crown with the motto “Pro Patria.”1 With this tradition, it is only natural that Martin and his brothers would look to the crown for offices in which to serve. Several members of the Martin family owned estates in England, Ireland, and in some of the American islands and on the mainland. One of the governor’s ancestors, an earlier Josiah, established the Anglo-Irish branch of the Martin family when he went to Ireland with Viscount Chichester in “a military capacity” during the reign of Elizabeth I.2 In Ireland the Martins prospered until the time of Cromwell.

Governor Martin’s great-grandfather, Col. George Martin of Whitehouse, was elected mayor or “the Sovereign of Belfast,” Ireland, in September, 1649.3 He was a noted royalist, and his property was confiscated by Cromwell’s Roundheads. Fleeing Cromwell’s wrath, Colonel George settled in Surinam; he died there before 1667. Colonel George’s oldest son, Maj. Samuel Martin, went to Antigua, where he became speaker of the assembly in 1689 and a member of the royal council in 1693. Major Samuel was murdered by his slaves on Christmas day, 1701. There is a hint in the records that Major Samuel was not the kindest master, and perhaps this is one of the reasons why his eldest son, Colonel Samuel, in later years, spent time converting his numerous slaves to Christianity.

Josiah Martin’s father, Col. Samuel Martin of Green Castle, Antigua, inherited large landholdings, both in Antigua and the British Isles. When Janet Schaw visited Colonel Samuel she described the Martin family as one of the oldest in Antigua and said that it had for “many generations enjoyed great power and riches.”4 Colonel Samuel was a commander of the island militia and speaker of the assembly in the decade 1753-1763.5 When he was fifteen years old, Colonel Samuel was sent to Cambridge University. He was the author of An Essay on Plantership and several small political pamphlets. Colonel Samuel’s brother, Josiah, was president of the royal council of Antigua, 1748-1750; later he emigrated to New York where he lived on his estate, Rock Hall, Far Rockaway, Long Island.6 He was a member of the first board of trustees for King’s College (now Columbia University) in 1754 and a member of the royal council of New York in 1754-1755.7

The first wife of Col. Samuel Martin of Green Castle, Antigua, was Frances, the daughter of John Yeamans, onetime attorney general of Antigua.8 By Frances, Colonel Samuel had a daughter Henrietta, and a son, Samuel, Jr. Samuel, Jr., later became an influential member of Parliament, a consultant for the crown’s advisers, and an efficient expediter for the careers of his half-brothers, particularly Josiah Martin.

After the death of Frances the colonel married Sarah Wyke Irish on May 1, 1728. Sarah was the daughter of Edward Wyke, the second governor of the island of Montserrat, and the widow of William Irish.9 By Sarah, the colonel had six surviving children, all of them sons. The future governor, Josiah, was the third son by Sarah, and he was born in Dublin, Ireland, on April 23, 1737. A perusal of the places where his children were born indicates Colonel Samuel’s extensive traveling and business interests. Three of his children were born in Antigua, two in London, one in Essex, another in Dorsetshire, and Josiah in Dublin.

Col. Samuel Martin noted in his family Bible that he had twenty-one children by his two wives; only eight of them were alive in 1748.10 The proliferation of Josiahs, Samuels, and Henrys either reflected the Martin family pride in ancestors or a lack of imagination in naming their sons, or perhaps both. The two most influential men in molding the young Josiah’s life were his half-brother Samuel, and their father, Col. Samuel Martin. Samuel, Jr., was educated at Westminster School, England, and then in 1729 he attended Trinity College at Cambridge University.11 He received his legal education at the Inns of Court, Inner Temple, beginning in 1729. He was made bencher or senior member of the Inner Temple in 1747. Samuel was elected to the House of Commons in 1747, and he served his constituency in Camelford until 1768, when he was elected from Hastings, a treasury borough, where he served until his retirement in 1774. Earlier, from 1742 to 1750, he had been deputy agent for Antigua. He was secretary to the chancellor of the exchequer from April, 1754, to November, 1755. As secretary of the treasury, Samuel held one of the key offices of the civil service. He served in the treasury on two occasions: November, 1756-April, 1757, and April, 1758-April, 1763. He served as treasurer to the dowager princess of Wales (the mother of George III) from October, 1757, to February 8, 1772. On May 1, 1772, he was granted a pension of £1,200 for life.

Samuel, Jr., the dedicated financial expert and public servant, seems to have attracted public attention on matters that suggest scandal on three separate occasions.12 First, Samuel fathered an illegitimate son;13 secondly, after 1751, he joined the Pelham political party and in 1754 stood at Camelford on the government interest with the alleged help of secret service money against the Duke of Bedford’s candidate; thirdly, after George III became king in October, 1760, Samuel was involved in the differences between the new court and the Duke of Newcastle over the financing of the Prussian phase of the Seven Years’ War. In April, 1763, Samuel departed with Lord Bute (the king’s former tutor and chief adviser); but by keeping up with Bute and retaining his position in the household of the dowager princess of Wales, he became a target for invective in the campaign waged against his patron. Following an attack by John Wilkes in the North Briton, Samuel spoke out against Wilkes in the debate in the House on November 15, 1763. This outburst led to a duel in which Wilkes, the self-proclaimed defender of the freedom of the press, was wounded. Both men fled to France: Wilkes to escape prosecution and Martin in case Wilkes died of his wound. In Paris both hotheads exchanged sober civilities.14

Inspired by the stories of his older brother’s success in the imperial city of London, it is not surprising that the adolescent Josiah would dream of following in Samuel’s footsteps in a law career. He was encouraged in this by his father who often reminded the young Josiah that Samuel, Jr., was “ye prop” of the family.15 As Josiah grew older he changed his mind about a law career. He dreamed of being a dashing, young officer in the army. Colonel Samuel tried to discourage this romantic notion. Bridling at his father’s pragmatic suggestions, the fifteen-year-old Josiah appealed to his older brother for help and advice, hoping Samuel would intercede for him. In a display of juvenile theatrics, Josiah described himself “dragging on a miserable & loathsome life for 3 or 4 years longer in this odious place & so that under my present circumstances Death is preferable.”16 Despite this appeal his brother did not encourage Josiah’s aspiration for the army.

Josiah persisted in his dream of becoming an army officer, but he continued his studies in Antigua. In the following December, 1752, Josiah asked his brother to send copies of “a Latin Tacitus,” and “your translation of Tully’s Orations.”17 Josiah advised his brother that their father wanted him to send “a cheap edition of Pope’s Works, a Livy, a pocket Common Prayer for each of us,” and “Psalms by Sternhold & Hopkinson.” Besides the indication that they were Anglican, their request for the works of classical and modern writers suggested the cultivated tastes of the Martin family. Certainly one might speculate that Josiah Martin was exposed to the belles-lettres system of education as popularized by the English translation of Charles Rollin’s essays that had been approved by Voltaire.18

As Josiah grew into young manhood there are hints in the extant correspondence of his being allowed more independence by his father. When he was seventeen years old Josiah bought a London “cock hat” with silver lace, and, more significantly, Josiah went to visit his brother in London.19 After his return to Antigua, Josiah continued to try to persuade Samuel to become his advocate in convincing their father to let him enter the army.20

Josiah’s determined pursuit of his dream finally achieved results. Apparently brother Samuel helped him secure an ensignship in the Fourth Foot Regiment because in 1757 Josiah obtained his father’s consent to enter the army.21 In November, 1758, Martin was commissioned a lieutenant. As a young officer Josiah saw service in the Seven Years’ War. With the fall of Montreal on September 8, 1760, the governor of Canada, the Marquis de Vaudreuil, had surrendered Canada to the British. From Montreal Josiah described to his brother the “reduction of Canada.”22

Maj. Gen. Sir Jeffrey Amherst assigned Martin’s regiment the task of rebuilding the fortifications of Ft. St. Frederic, which had been renamed Crown Point. Exhilarated by the success of British arms, the twenty-three-year-old Josiah described the Canadians to his brother “as a hardy race of people far beyond the people of our colonies in point of Stature.”23 He noted that the Canadians had established “a certain equality among them” which he thought was extraordinary. Josiah believed that it would be easy to subvert their equality by allowing these “Poor Settlers to become the prey of the more opulent & ambitious.” Martin’s elite attitude revealed an immaturity as well as class prejudice toward commoners, a view he shared with many Britons who were in colonial service.

As it became clear that England was winning the Seven Years’ War, Josiah thought about a promotion so that if the army went on half-pay he would have a better income. He sought and received the approval of his father to purchase a commission with the rank of major.24 To persuade Samuel to help him in this venture, Josiah argued that his health would improve if he secured a promotion to a British regiment stationed in one of the German states. He attributed his bouts of ill health to the American climate. This was not unusual because many Anglo-Americans contracted agues, fevers, and other debilitating diseases. It was an accepted part of the life-style of the eighteenth century.25 Later, however, Josiah modified his opinion of the climate in the American colonies.

While stationed at Crown Point, Josiah had an opportunity to visit his Uncle Josiah and his family at their estate, Rock Hall, on Long Island.26 There Josiah renewed his friendships with his numerous cousins, and he met many of the visiting New York gentry. His uncle was an important landowner and an active member of the provincial establishment. On December 29, 1758, Josiah Martin was appointed to the New York royal council, a position once held by his uncle.27 Martin was young to receive such an appointment, and it suggests that his uncle had political influence in New York. As a member of the council, Josiah Martin gained experience and insight into provincial government. Moreover, attending the council meetings gave Josiah an opportunity to stay at Rock Hall and court his cousin, Elizabeth.

On January 6, 1761, Josiah informed his brother that he planned to marry Elizabeth, and the young couple were indeed married a few days later.28 The marriage occurred long before Samuel received Josiah’s letter. Both Samuels, father and son, were offended because Josiah had not asked his father for permission to marry. Uncle Josiah did give the young couple some money and possibly slaves and horses because he stated in his will that he had already “paid to her husband her fortune, as may be seen by my book.”29 In his will Uncle Josiah left two of his daughters £1,000 each with some horses and slaves, and probably Elizabeth received a dowry of similar value. Five months after the marriage ceremony, Josiah asked his father for forgiveness for “this single deviation.”30 It should be noted that Josiah Martin could defy convention when he wanted to marry for love.

The growing awareness of the financial obligation of marriage caused Josiah to search for ways in which to increase his income. Elizabeth was carrying their child, the future Mary Elizabeth. Josiah again turned to his father and his brother for help in purchasing a commission of major.31 Josiah’s father approved a proposed trip to England to purchase a commission. Moreover, his father had continued Josiah’s annual allowance of £100.32

Before the American Revolution, according to one historian, a colonial gentleman needed £100 annually to live in comfort.33 For a man of means to maintain a higher standard of living, an income of £450 annually was essential. Josiah obviously needed more income if he were to live in the manner of the New York gentry.

In London Captain Josiah recruited soldiers, visited his brother Henry’s wife, and consulted with Samuel about an advancement in the army. The faithful Samuel secured for Josiah two fairly rapid promotions in the army.34 When Josiah Martin returned to New York he was a major in the 103rd Regiment or the Volunteer Hunters with Charles Lee of later American Revolutionary fame. On December 24, 1762, Josiah Martin was commissioned lieutenant colonel of the Twenty-second Regiment of Foot, afterward called Gage’s regiment.35

Although Josiah received help from his father in purchasing a commission, Colonel Samuel reminded Josiah that Elizabeth had not brought much of a dowry to him. He added: “This is always ye consequence of hasty marriages for which people may mark themselves, and you must do ye best you can” by economizing.36 His father continued: “I cannot without injustice make a difference among my children of equal merit, yr. eldest bro. excepted, who is ye prop of the family.”

Josiah thought that if his father saw Elizabeth and their child he might approve of the marriage. He promised that they would visit in Antigua the next summer. The proposed trip to Antigua gave two of Josiah’s critics on the New York royal council an opportunity to complain about his absenteeism. Because of his trips to London and Antigua the council in November, 1762, temporarily replaced Josiah Martin with Lawrence Read. In January, 1763, Lawrence Read was superseded by his father, Joseph Read, who was to sit temporarily in Martin’s place until he returned. The council gave Josiah “a full year to determine whether he will return to the council from the West Indies.”37

With the peace settlement of the Seven Years’ War in February, 1763, Josiah realized that opportunities for advancement within the army would be limited. Although Martin knew that he and his family could stay with his aged father on the Antigua plantation, he wanted to live on his own place. Once more Josiah turned to his brother for advice and help. He visited Samuel in London in the summer of 1764, but he could find no satisfactory solution for his financial problems.38 While in London, Josiah had a miniature portrait of himself painted by the fashionable Jeremiah Meyer, enamel-painter to the king.39 This portrait is now missing. Realizing that he could not find the opportunities for advancement in London, and lonely for his family, Josiah borrowed from his brother £200 to pay his debts so he could return to Antigua. He was reunited with his family and his father on September 15, 1764.40

Snug in his island retreat, young Josiah was aroused to passionate declarations by the Stamp Act crisis that inflamed the mainland colonies as well as Antigua. Moreover, he became involved in a personal crusade to reduce or eliminate graft in the British army; this situation so disillusioned him that in his search for financial security he began to consider civilian offices over those in the army. This search for financial security motivated him to move from Antigua to New York.

The first direct tax ever levied by Parliament upon America, the stamp tax, was passed on March 8 to become effective November 1, 1765. Members of the Martin family in Antigua and London were directly affected by the Stamp Act crisis when the protest on the American mainland spread to Antigua. Writing to his brother about the repeal of the Stamp Act, Josiah said:

Do not ye friends of Americans begin now to see that it was highly impolitic to grant to the Contumacy of this people, such a triumph as they did by absolutely repealing ye Stamp Act? If they are so willfully blind as to maintain ye propriety of that measure; I will venture to pronounce without the Gift of prophecy, that their posterity will long rue their dastardly concession. The unnatural jealousy of the Mother Country still subsists & the leading people continue to encourage the consumption of her Manufactures by precept & example.41

Josiah’s irritation about the stamp tax crisis was exacerbated by the New York assembly’s refusal for full compliance with the provisions of the Quartering Act as requested by General Thomas Gage.42 Gage, the commander of the British forces in America, had his headquarters in New York City. When the assembly refused full compliance, protests and violence ensued which soon equated in the minds of the colonists the Quartering Act with the Stamp Act as instruments of British oppression. Tension continued to grow and the assembly was prorogued on December 19. Finally, on June 6, 1767, the assembly voted £3,000 for Gage.

From New York Josiah complained passionately to his brother Samuel about the colonists and their defiance of Parliament:

This country is much alarmed by the late proceedings of the H of C & fearfully expects the arrival of a Packet which it is conjectured will bring the result of its deliberations upon the Contumacious resistance of this Province to the measures of Govt. Under this apprehension however, I perceive no disposition to compliance among the people. The most moderate of their politicians, holding the opinion, that by receiving the Act of P. for billetting troops, they will not only admit its supreme authority over the Colonies in the present instance but yield to it the right of having taxes upon America; a Power which they cannot consent should reside in Great Britain, who hath lately so flagrantly invaded their liberty, by requiring their contribution, to the support of a state, to which they are indebted for nothing, but their lives, Liberty & property.43

Josiah was critical of some American newspapers for their scurrilous and “inflammatory misrepresentations” that helped to develop “a spirit of independence.” He may have had in mind John Holt’s press that vigorously supported the local Sons of Liberty in their successful efforts to persuade many New Yorkers of the unconstitutionality of the Stamp Act.44 Martin thought a crisis was at hand “when Britain must vigorously assert her sovreignty [sic] as resign it to a weak, timid, licentious mob, wished by a few affected Patriots.” Martin believed the “bold Triumph of North America, in the repeal of the Stamp Act, hath so inspired this people with ideas of their power & importance” that they would “dispute the Authority of Britain in every case” in the future. Josiah thought it was time for coercive measures to bring the Americans to reason, and that once the “spirit of Govt.” was shown to them they would cease their resistance. Thus, Martin was arguing for coercive measures to be used against the colonists almost seven years before Parliament passed the Coercive Acts in response to the Boston Tea Party.45

Resistance had spread to Antigua and its sister islands, which gave Josiah an opportunity not only to criticize the assembly of Antigua but also his father for sympathizing with the protestors. Josiah was living in Antigua at the time of the Stamp Act crisis. He described the defiance of the Antiguans: “The uproar of the colonies against the Stamp Act hath inspired the little West Indian Communities with like jealousies, & apprehensions.”46 Josiah declared that the assembly of Antigua had proved to him “that the bond, liberty, hath not less the power of intoxication, in a Country supported by barbarian bondage” than in other parts of the empire. The guard of the king’s regiment suffered daily insults in Antigua. Instead of employing “a Peace officer to act in conjunction with the King’s Troops,” the Antigua assembly resolved that to hire a peace officer would be an infringement of “the Subjects’ liberty in the person of the Constable.” This opinion Josiah thought repugnant to common sense and established practice, but it was “cherished by many people who knew better.” As lieutenant colonel of the local regiment, the Sixty-eighth, Josiah saw the Antiguan protestors opposing him “as servant of the Crown.” The island protests continued, and tensions grew, which caused the House of the assembly to decide to support the stamp tax. The only member of the House to oppose the assembly in this matter was Josiah’s father, Colonel Samuel. Josiah told his brother “my Father singly held a contrary opinion & treated their objections with desired ridicule.” Like his powerful political friend, Lord Bute, Samuel, Jr., had opposed the repeal of the Stamp Act, and on February 22, 1766, he had voted against the repeal measure.47 Josiah and Samuel, Jr., supported a strictly legal philosophy in the Stamp Act crisis, whereas their father supported the protestors; a reversal of the usual classic behavior pattern of father and sons.

During and after the Stamp Act crisis, Josiah continued to seek ways to increase his income and free himself from his financial dependence on his father. His experience with the Antiguan protestors as they harassed his regiment increased his disillusionment with army life. Not only was he critical of the stamp tax protestors, he disapproved of abuses within the army. So concerned was he over a particular abuse that he complained to his brother Samuel about what he called “surplusages in the soldiers’ pay that they did not receive.”48 He was referring to a common practice in the British army in which colonels of the various regiments were given allotments for the pay of their troops, their clothing, and their hospital expenses. These colonels had a “pecuniary advantage” when they were given money to clothe and equip their men out of the net “off-reckonings; that is from the total pay of the non-commissioned officers and men of their regiments,” after subsistence pay had been given and the customary deductions had been made.49 Depending on the size of their regiments, the colonels could manipulate their allotments for clothing and equipment by making arrangements with suppliers so that each colonel could realize a substantial profit for himself.50 On January 21, 1766, from Antigua, Josiah sent a letter to his brother Samuel by a fellow officer, a Captain Munro, who was paymaster of the Sixty-eighth Regiment. The letter carried by Munro would explain, Josiah said, the colonels’ surplusage money scandal as represented to Lord Barrington, the secretary of war.51

Josiah had hoped that his brother with his powerful friends could have persuaded Lord Barrington to alleviate the abuse of the off-reckonings money which he called the “surplusages.” Barrington apparently ignored the request for a reform, because Josiah later criticized Barrington for his lack of interest and his unwillingness to pay the regimental surgeon 100 guineas.52 The rates of pay for the soldiers had been set in the reign of William III when the first act of Parliament was made for regulating the army. The surgeon’s rate was £20.13s.1d a year, over £80 less than what Josiah wanted for the surgeons.53 In all probability Barrington did not see Josiah Martin’s letter complaining about the colonels and their regimental profits, particularly if it first crossed the desk of Samuel Martin, Jr. Samuel knew the political power of the colonels who were members of Parliament, and he understood Lord Barrington’s potent friendship with George III.54

Josiah Martin was disillusioned with the army, and his economic future looked bleak. His lieutenant colonelcy did not provide enough income for his growing family. Moreover, his brother Samuel was considering retiring from his seat in Parliament. Josiah advised him that if he did retire he wanted Samuel to sell his commission because he could expect nothing more in the army “after your secession from Parliament.”55 Josiah added that he would forsake “with great concern a profession to which I have rooted myself near ten years.”

On July 11, 1766, his father’s intimate friend, Gov. George Thomas of Antigua, gave Josiah a temporary appointment to the royal council.56 Though prestigious, the appointment was not financially rewarding. Josiah continued to explore ways to improve his financial security.

On September 1 Josiah told his brother Samuel that he did not know where he would get enough money to support his family.57 He confided that he had gotten over his juvenile admiration of the army with its “gawdy charms.” He wanted to sell his commission and buy lands in the conquered islands of the Carribean. Samuel delayed answering Josiah’s letters—procrastination which may have been designed to encourage his brother to consider all alternatives.

In a series of letters written to Samuel, Josiah changed his opinion as to where he wished to settle from the Carribean to the middle provinces of North America.58 Another change was Josiah’s growing interest in securing a civil colonial office. By October 2, 1766, Josiah aspired to “an office of emolument, such as Collector of New York or Boston or any other office.”59 He asked his brother to help him get “an exciseman’s office” or the office of secretary of a colony “which is a Patent office” and ought to be “considerably profitable.”60 In his search for financial solvency, Josiah Martin explored for the first time the possibilities of a civil office over that of a military one.

In November, 1766, Josiah decided to move in the spring to New York where economic opportunities might be more plentiful than in Antigua.61 In preparation for his move to New York, Josiah ordered from London medicines, hunting rifles, some magnificent silver service, and a splendid library.62 The books were ordered from James Robson, bookseller to the princess of Wales at the Plume and Feather in New Bond Street, London. Some of the books on his selected list were works by Julius Caesar, Thucydides, Longinus, Xenophon, Plutarch, Terence, Bolingbroke, Clarendon, Milton, Addison, Fielding, Pope, Swift, Montaigne, Newton, Rousseau, Robertson, Rollins, Ben Jonson, Rabelais, Sidney, and Grotius. He also ordered Burns’s Justice of the Peace, and volumes of the Spectator, Tatler, and Guardian. Elizabeth may have been an excellent spouse, but Josiah did include in his book order the “Compleat Housewife by E. Smith,” apparently for her guidance. He had included “Boyer’s French Dictionary,” “Martinieri’s Geographic Dictionary,” “Lilly’s Grammar,” and Vauban’s “Treatise of Fortification.” His book order suggests that he had a reading knowledge of French, Latin, and Greek, although there were some works in English translation, and that he had a fairly good education for the eighteenth century.

In another preparation for his move to New York, Josiah asked his brother Samuel to secure a mandamus on the New York council for a land grant that was available to him as an army officer. Samuel was to pay the charges for this out of the sale of Josiah’s army commission.63

Samuel’s reply of December 20, 1766, to Josiah’s urgent letters was delayed by the wintry seas, it not being received until March 3, 1767. Samuel reprimanded Josiah for wanting to be an “exciseman,” a collector of the customs. Josiah admitted “inconsistency of my first project of transplanting myself to St. Vincent,”64 which resulted from the alluring description given him by a friend and from his own “vexed mind.” Josiah assured his brother that his plan “to retreat to N. America was the offspring of a deliberate view” because of the impossibility of achieving any financial success for his family in Antigua. Another urgent reason he gave was his family’s ill health; Elizabeth had miscarried of twins in the spring of 1767.65

As an officer Josiah had to secure the king’s permission before he could go to New York; Samuel had obtained the king’s permission for Josiah. Josiah arranged with a fellow officer in Antigua to look after his regiment.66

Josiah and his family arrived in New York City on May 20, 1767.67 There he discovered that the office of adjutant general of the British army on the continent had been taken by a Lieutenant Colonel Maitland, but the office of deputy quartermaster general was still vacant. Pleased with the climate, but unhappy with country living, Martin explored every rumor that he heard about vacancies in the army and the civil provincial offices. He learned that all staff officers subordinate to the commander-in-chief in North America were paid 10 shillings per diem.68 Thus, he was no longer interested in the staff offices. In the meantime, Samuel tried to persuade Lord Granby to appoint Josiah to the quartermaster office for North America. Granby refused Samuel’s request, but he agreed to transfer Josiah from Antigua to North America when the first lieutenant colonelcy became vacant. Samuel cautioned his brother that if the vacancy did not materialize soon he should return to Antigua before his leave expired. Samuel added that he was reluctant to sell Josiah’s commission for him.69

Josiah faced a difficult situation when he arrived in New York with his family and his father. Josiah did not wish to be dependent on his father’s income; he wanted to make his own way in the bureaucratic world of the empire. Still, he was concerned about his aging father’s health as well as his own. The difficulty was that his father preferred the warmer climate of Antigua, and Josiah detested it.70 After a short stay in New York, Colonel Samuel returned to his plantation. Josiah knew he should return to Antigua to watch over his father. Yet he delayed returning to Antigua when he discovered that the barrackmaster generalship would become vacant if the current occupant was appointed lieutenant governor of Virginia. Josiah asked Samuel to help him secure the vacant office of either the barrackmaster generalship or the lieutenant governorship. He admitted that he was in the predicament of “a sinking man catching at every hope of deliverance.”71 Josiah needed his brother’s help because Sir Jeffrey Amherst favored a Colonel Robinson for the Virginia office. Moreover, General Gage wanted his brother-in-law, a captain, to have the quartermaster office. Josiah was not alone in seeking a better office.

In his pursuit of economic well-being, Josiah delayed his voyage to Antigua. In October, 1768, a smallpox epidemic swept through New York City, and Josiah again postponed his trip to Antigua because he wanted to get his children innoculated.72 Samuel continued his search for a preferment for Josiah, but unfortunately, such attempts failed.73 Finally, Josiah and his wife returned to Antigua to visit his father in May, 1769. He left all of his children with his relatives on Long Island except his oldest child, Mary Elizabeth.74

The visit for Josiah and his family was a short one. They arrived in Antigua the middle of May and by the middle of June they were in Philadelphia on their way back to New York. Why was the visit cut short? Josiah’s “old sickness” returned to him, and he told his brother: “It has extinguished every spark of military ambition in me.”75 His father agreed that Josiah should return to New York to improve his health. Josiah asked his brother to put the sale of his army commission into the hands of James Meyrick, a London merchant.76

Fourteen days after he left Antigua, Josiah Martin was called to rejoin his regiment. Martin advised Governor Woodly of Antigua that for reasons of ill health he would not return to his regiment.77 He told the governor that he had asked for the king’s permission to retire. Josiah, then desperate, urged his brother to place his army commission in the hands of Meyrick for an immediate sale.78 On August 2 Samuel advised Josiah that Meyrick would sell it for £3,500.79

Josiah’s financial worries were lessened by the news that Samuel had deposited an inheritance of over £374 from his half-sister, Mrs. Irish, with Meyrick.80 To alleviate his brother’s worries further, the generous Samuel cancelled the £500 debt Josiah owed him for past loans,81 a gesture which Josiah refused. Josiah wrote a draft on Meyrick for £500 chargeable against the future sale of his commission.82

Samuel advised Josiah that he knew of no patent places or preferments that were “sold fairly & by open permission: except a few in the Courts of Justice.”83 The practice of the purchase of an individual civil office was confidential, if not secret, in the eighteenth century. Eventually abuses developed, such as sending a deputy to fulfill the duties of the office and absentee officeholders who remained in England. Parliamentary reform ended these practices: absentee officeholding was forbidden by law during the 1780s, and the purchase of civil offices was forbidden by statute in the early nineteenth century.84

After drawing some bills of credit on Samuel, Josiah sailed for London to try to get a patent office or a land grant in North America.85 In London Josiah met with Samuel. Josiah’s efforts for securing a land grant began to bear fruit. Following his brother’s advice, he petitioned the privy council for 20,000 acres of land in northern New York on the basis of his service as a veteran of the Seven Years’ War. The privy council referred Martin’s petition to the Board of Trade on May 10, 1770.86 On the same day members of the Board of Trade agreed to recommend Martin’s petition to the king, and they signed it. Before his ship sailed to New York on May 24, Josiah paid all of his bills except his indebtedness to Samuel.87 He did not have enough money to buy a patent office, and he asked Samuel to persuade their father to help financially so Josiah could purchase one.

After a passage of eleven weeks and four days from England via Philadelphia, Josiah was reunited with his family on Long Island in August.88 His voyage was troubled by heat, storms, and adverse winds that seriously restricted the water rations for the crew and passengers. Martin believed that Providence saved him on this perilous trip. The voyage gravely affected Martin’s health for the rest of his life.

When Josiah Martin arrived in New York City in August, 1770, he learned from his friends the effects of the American merchants’ policy of nonimportation that had been invoked against the Townshend Acts and of the renewed local conflict over the Quartering Act.89 A fortnight after his return Josiah reported to Samuel the defection of the New York merchants from the combination against the importation of British manufactures. Exercising caution, Josiah enclosed his letter in a second envelope to conceal his conclusions “concerning the present aspect of men’s minds here with respect to Great Britain which being discovered might be attended with inconveniences.”90 Three weeks later the New York merchants began dropping out of the boycott and antagonizing merchants in other provinces.91 Josiah believed that Boston was the dominant leader in the drop-out because her merchants had so much British manufactured goods in their warehouses. He saw the petty animosities among the provinces reviving in that each colony distrusted the others. His brother Samuel had a distaste for mass movements, and he may have been pleased to read Josiah’s comments.

Josiah’s ambition soared to new heights when he enthusiastically reported to Samuel on September 22 that their father had agreed to let Josiah use his inheritance of £1,500 to help pay for a preferment in America.92 He also reported to Samuel that Sir Henry Moore, the governor of New York, had died. There was a rumor circulating that Lord Dunmore would become the next governor of New York. If this were true, Josiah hoped to buy some land for speculation. On October 5 he reported to Samuel that he had received the long-awaited king’s mandamus to buy lands in New York.93 He sought Samuel’s judgment on buying land in East Florida.

As Josiah made plans for his family’s economic future, his faithful brother Samuel was busily working to advance Josiah’s dream of preferment. Samuel’s negotiations with the secretary of state for the colonies, Lord Hillsborugh, began to bear fruit. With the death of the governor of New York, Hillsborough reshuffled three governorships of the thirteen colonies in North America. On December 1 Hillsborough told the Board of Trade that the king approved Lord Dunmore as governor of New York.94 Eleven days later, with the news of the death of Lord Botetourt, governor of Virginia, Hillsborough reshuffled the governorships again. He advised the Board of Trade that the king had been pleased to appoint Dunmore to be governor of Virginia. Hillsborough then transferred William Tryon from North Carolina to New York and appointed Josiah Martin governor of North Carolina.95

Both Hillsborough and Samuel Martin wrote letters to Josiah Martin on December 13, 1770, notifying him of his appointment as governor of North Carolina.96 The official news of this long-sought appointment for preferment did not reach Josiah Martin for two and one-half months because of the time and distance required to cross the wintry seas. Unofficially, the news of his appointment reached Josiah Martin earlier. In February, 1771, an unidentified English newspaper brought from Boston to New York City gave an account of Governor Tryon’s transfer to New York and the appointment of “Henry Martin” to succeed him in North Carolina.97 A friend of Martin, a Colonel Maitland in New York to whom this news story was reported, concluded that Josiah was the person referred to in the news story. Maitland sent Josiah his congratulations as did some other of his friends. When Josiah Martin received the unofficial news, his baggage was on board ship. He had been waiting for two days to sail for St. Augustine, Florida, where he had been considering settling for some time.98 Still not sure of the authenticity of the news report, but, persuaded by his friends, Josiah delayed his departure.

Taking advantage of this forced delay, Josiah went to see his physician about a health problem. Examination revealed that he was suffering from a fistula believed to have been caused by “my sufferings & bad living at sea, on my tedious voyage from England last summer.”99 His illness proved to be time-consuming and painful; eventually he had to have four operations. For five months Martin was delayed from going to New Bern, where the problems of North Carolina, Tryon’s legacy, awaited him.100

Martin’s suffering from ill health was alleviated to some extent by the joy he experienced in receiving on March 1, 1771, from Lord Hillsborough the official notice of his appointment and the informal notice in the private letter from his brother Samuel.101 He immediately wrote a formal acceptance of his appointment to Hillsborough. His letter to his brother was a grateful, humble, and affectionate one:

I cannot say how much I am obliged to you for this gleam of prosperity; so opportune; so critical; so consoling to my afflicted mind labouring under all the pain, & solicitude that can attend a desperate fortune. Ten thousand thanks to you for this relief; infinitely the more acceptable to me, as I am willing to consider it a proof of the conciliation of your heart towards me, much changed by my misconduct; the circumstance of my life, I solemnly assure you, the most painful to my mind, not unacquainted with distress & anguish.

Although confined by his illness, Martin wrote to Governor Tryon for information about North Carolina. Martin told Samuel that Mrs. Tryon had suggested to him that the two governors exchange portraits. Martin agreed to her request.102

Martin was concerned about the finances required for his position as governor. He anticipated that he would have to affect a standard of living very unsuitable to his current resources.103 He confided to Samuel: “There is however no help for it; and all I can do is not to exceed in pageantry, what may be strictly proper & necessary in my situation.” Josiah recalled “that as I walked with you one day in the Park just before I left London; speaking of the possibility of the event which your friendship hath so soon brought to pass, you observed that in such cases I should want all manner of equipment; to which I answered I had been obliged to buy some little furniture which might serve until I could supply myself from England.” When he told Samuel that he would write Mr. Ottley to send him a modest coach, he added a wry comment: “a piece of furniture indispensably necessary I apprehend to my mock state.”

Josiah quoted from Hillsborough’s letter when he complimented Samuel: “I have the greatest satisfaction in communicating to you this gracious mark of the King’s favour on account of the regard & esteem I have for your brother, & my friend, Mr. Samuel Martin.” He mentioned this to Samuel because he would know “in what light to consider it.” Josiah was grateful to his brother for the preferment “for unknown, & insignificant in myself, it could never be imagined that I should suppose it the reward of my own merit,” but as a favor conferred on Samuel.104

Aware of the responsibilities of the office of governor, Josiah wrote his brother:

The office of Chancellor is I own to me the most formidable part of a Governor’s business. I shall be very thankful to you for instruction on this head, as well as on every other subject. Your studies in the former part of your life may probably have made you acquainted with some books which may tend to guide my judgment.105

While Martin was being treated for his illness, he stayed in New York City. He received visitors and listened to all the political gossip and tried to sort out the rumors and facts, some of which he reported to Samuel: the Virginia government was worth at least £10,000 a year, and Lord Dunmore wanted the appointment; Dunmore told Josiah that he had asked to stay in the New York government, and that Tryon might take his place in Virginia. Martin received his credentials as governor of North Carolina on May 1, and he wrote to Hillsborough to explain his delay in going to New York.106

The first specific reference to the Regulators in the extant Martin correspondence is in Josiah’s letter to Samuel of May 16, 1771, when he discussed briefly “Governor Tryon’s present situation in No. Carolina.”107 Martin’s information about the Regulators was fragmentary.108 Apparently it was based on newspaper accounts published in October and November, 1770, because Martin had not yet received letters from Tryon or Hillsborough about the Regulator rebellion.109 Josiah reported to Samuel: “Governor Tryon’s present situation in No. Carolina promises me no such tranquillity as is there to be enjoyed.”110 He recounted how “near one thousand” Carolinians were in arms and open defiance of all law and government, and that Tryon was marching against them. Josiah added:

All I can learn of this commotion is that the Inhabitants of Two Counties, under the influence of & at the instigation of four or five factions, artfull & designing villains, refuse to comply with the assessments of law upon pocket, that the oppressive exactions of the Publick officers are unpunishable & on this ground they oppose the execution of all law;—Thus by violence enjoy an exemption from taxes. The spirit with which the majority of the Province seems disposed to act, under the direction of Governor Tryon cannot fail to restore very soon, the affairs of that Province to good order.

Speaking as a military man, Josiah told Samuel: “I should despise such a secession of a tumultous rabble, yet in the delicate situation of a Civil Governor, I think it may embarrass.” Coercive measures were to be used with extreme caution.111 Moreover, he added: “the nice limits & prescriptions of our constitution, according to modern interpretation, allow little latitude for such vigorous exertion as appears under certain circumstances, necessary to its very being notwithstanding.” Josiah speculated that the first appearance of Tryon and his troops would suffice to quell the “present disorders in Carolina,” yet he thought the “evil” might break out again. Martin was quick to suggest the use of coercive measures against the radicals in the stamp tax and Quartering Act crisis; however, when he thought he would be affected personally as governor in the Regulator troubles, he questioned the use of force.

Early in June, Martin received a letter from Tryon in which the governor spoke of military preparations “Against the Insurgents but not whence the disorder has arisen.”112 Near the end of the month, Martin learned that Tryon had defeated the Regulators, “killed, wounded & taken prisoners of upwards of 300”113 Martin did not envy Tryon’s achievement because it was like “a sacrifice—like a slaughter of defenceless, deluded sheep. The history of this peoples discontent I have not however been able to learn & I can therefore form no judgment.” Martin expected to learn more about the Regulators when he consulted with Governor Tryon after the latter’s arrival in New York City sometime in early July. Martin had been uneasy about his health and “the Commotions in Carolina,” but he confided to his brother:

“I shall be a new man & I hope to find a field for the exercise of mercy & the display of the olive branch.”

Hillsborough wrote Martin on May 4 advising him to continue the same measures against the Regulators that Tryon used so successfully.114 By emulating Tryon, Hillsborough told Martin, “you will have the merit of restoring peace and tranquillity to the Province.” However, there is no indication that Martin received Hillsborough’s dispatch while he was in New York. Martin arrived at his preliminary conclusions about the Regulators before he received Hillsborough’s dispatch or consulted with Tryon.

From North Carolina, Governor Tryon reported to Hillsborough on June 29 that he had received his dispatches and circular letters that contained certain instructions.115 Since he was commanded by His Majesty “to repair without loss of time to the government of New York, I am constrained to leave such things as remain to be done to the discretion of Governor Martin, as I embark tomorrow for my new government.” He sent a similar dispatch to the Board of Trade on the same day advising it he would leave for Governor Martin the members’ requests for amendments to laws.

Martin met with Tryon in New York City on July 9, and the two governors discussed some of the problems of North Carolina.116 Their discussions were limited because Tryon was occupied “between business, and ceremony, on his arrival in his new Government.” Martin was much indebted to Governor Tryon for his “candor & politeness with which he answered all my inquiries.”117 Because Tryon had assured him that North Carolina was in a peaceful state, Martin postponed his departure.118 He hoped to secure useful information and “instruction” from Tryon concerning the affairs of North Carolina, “in which I was not disappointed.” Martin advised Hillsborough: “I should be wanting in justice to that Gentleman if I omitted this occasion to acknowledge my great obligations to him, for his free, & open communication.”

As Martin consulted with Tryon and finished the preparations for his departure, Lord Dunmore and Tryon became involved in a controversy over where they would collect their salaries.119 Dunmore had delayed leaving for his new government in Virginia. He wanted to collect his salary in New York up to July 9. Tryon had arrived on July 8. Tryon wanted his salary to start with the date of his new commission; otherwise, he would collect his North Carolina salary until the date on which he left New Bern. If this happened then Governor Martin would be the loser. The extant records do not reveal the solution to this impasse. Martin sailed from New York on either July 21 or 22.

After a passage of nineteen days, Governor Martin and his family arrived in New Bern on Sunday, August 11, 1771, a trip that ordinarily took about four to five days.120 Martin expressed his chagrin to Lord Hillsborough for all the delay in getting to his new post:

I suffered my Lord during my tedious confinement, all the anguish, that a man may be supposed to feel, under the apprehensions of being suspected of delinquency, highly aggravated by seeing Gov. Tryon in my place, engaged, in quelling at the expense of great fatigue, & toil, a dangerous insurrection, at a time, that I found myself utterly incapable of relieving him from the difficult situation, to which honour & duty pressingly called me.121

The facts of Martin’s illness were known and justified his absence. Time schedules were not important to the people of the eighteenth century. Hillsborough himself had been absent from his office for several weeks during this period when he went to visit his estates in Ireland.122 Thus, it is doubtful that Hillsborough was critical of Martin for being delayed in going to New Bern.

On Monday, August 12, 1771, in the council chamber of the governor’s palace at New Bern, Josiah Martin presented his commission dated January 19, appointing him “His said Majesty’s Captain General Governor and Commander in Chief in and over the Province of North Carolina.”123 The commission was read and published in the presence of the councillors: the Honorable James Hasell, president of the council and acting governor, Martin Howard, the chief justice, and Samuel Cornell, Esq. Then His Excellency Josiah Martin took all the oaths appointed by law and watched while the councillors took their oaths. On the same day Governor Martin issued a proclamation for continuing provincial officers in their respective “employments,” and he received the seal of the province from the hands of Mr. President Hasell.124

James Hasell, the president of the council, was kind and cooperative with Martin,125 and Martin “took early occasion to recommend him for the position of lieutenant governor in place of “George Mercer who was thought to have been appointed to a new government in the Ohio country.126 The rumor proved false. Mercer, the absentee lieutenant governor, remained in England. Besides Hasell, two other prominent North Carolinians had high expectations for Martin, and in their remarks there was an implication of criticism of Tryon. James Iredell, comptroller of the customs in Edenton, told his relative, Henry E. McCulloh of Salisbury, England, he thought Martin had too much spirit to suffer usurpations of those over whom he had control.127 Another of Iredell’s friends, the influential Samuel Johnston, wrote to Thomas Barker about Martin:

We are in daily expectation of Mr. Martin our new Govr. and as we hear a very amiable Character of him are not uneasy at the approaching change most among us thinking Govr. Tryon however well calculated to discharge the duty of a Soldier, that his Talents are not so well adapted to the Station he is now in.128

Thus, Governor Martin had the support of several influential North Carolinians at the beginning of his administration.

North Carolina historians have not always been objective when writing about Gov. Josiah Martin, and this may have reflected their local patriotism and pride in the United States of America. It is possible that Martin may have been a symbol of British tyranny for the historians as he was for the patriots in and out of the General Assembly during the administration.

Governor Martin tried to give the North Carolinians useful and fair government, but he was hampered by his instructions from Lord Hillsborough, and later by Lord Dartmouth. Tryon left a legacy to Martin of five major problems that plagued North Carolina. These problems were the fiscal and psychological effects of the War of the Regulators; the unsettled and expensive dispute between the Carolinas about their mutual boundary line; the struggle over the court law bills and the judiciary, especially the attachment of the property of debtors who had never lived in the province; the old quorum trouble in the House of Commons that caused conflict between the House and the governor; and the conflict over the selection of the chief personnel of the provincial government by the crown rather than through the assembly.

If he had had time, it is quite possible that Martin might have had an opportunity to reconcile some of these problems, but the growing revolutionary ferment blocked any peaceful solution. With no hope for military support and threatened by the New Bern Committee of Safety, Martin sent his wife and children to the safety of relatives in New York on May 23, 1775. Accompanied by Archibald Neilson, Martin fled to Ft. Johnston, near Wilmington, and arrived there on June 2, 1775. Martin planned with Hillsborough’s successor, Lord Dartmouth, the subjugation of the southern colonies. The governor accompanied British forces twice when they attempted to conquer the southern colonies. Because of his declining health, Martin left Lord Cornwallis at Wilmington in April, 1781, and rejoined his family in New York. His wife had died while he was with the army, and plans were made to remove his family to London. Josiah Martin died in London on April 13, 1786, and he was buried at St. George’s Hanover Square.


*Dr. Stumpf is professor of history, Department of Social Sciences, Campbell College. This paper, in shorter form, was presented at the annual meeting of the Tryon Palace Commission, New Bern, April 16, 1974.

1 The genealogical records and correspondence of Col. Samuel Martin and his sons are in the British Museum, London, Manuscript Collections, Additional Manuscripts, and will be hereinafter cited as Martin Papers, with the proper numerical designations.

Genealogical records, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, CXXIX, 41474, f. 56. The motto “Pro Patria” is taken from the Martin Papers, and it differs from V. L. Oliver, who has identified the Martin motto as “Auxilium ab Alto.” Vere Langford Oliver, The History of the Island of Antigua (London: Mitchell and Hughes, 3 volumes, 1894), II, 240, hereinafter cited as Oliver, History of Antigua.

2 Martin Papers, Add. MSS, CXXIX, 41474, f. 56.

3 This paragraph is based on information in the Martin Papers, Add. MSS, CXXIX, 41474, f. 56, and Oliver, History of Antigua, II, 240-251; III, 320.

4 Janet Schaw, Journal of a Lady of Quality; Being the Narrative of a Journey from Scotland to the West Indies, North Carolina, and Portugal, in the Years 1774-1776, edited by Evangeline Walker Andrews with the collaboration of Charles McLean Andrews (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1923), 104, hereinafter cited as Schaw, Journal of a Lady of Quality.

5 Martin Papers, Add. MSS, CXXIX, 41474, f. 56.

6 Martin Papers, Add. MSS, CXXIX, 41474, f. 56.

7 Herbert and Carole Schneider (eds.), Samuel Johnson, President of King’s College, His Career and Writings (New York: Columbia University Press, 4 volumes, 1929), IV, 35, 221, hereinafter cited as Schneider, Samuel Johnson.

8 Martin Papers, Add. MSS, CXXIX, 41474, f. 56.

9 Martin Papers, Add. MSS, CXXIX, 41474, f. 56.

10 Martin Papers, Add. MSS, CXXIX, 41474, f. 56. A. R. Newsome stated that Colonel Martin had twenty-three children, but it is probable that Newsome used as his source the journal of Janet Schaw rather than the Martin Papers. A. R. Newsome,“Josiah Martin,” in Allen Johnson, Dumas Malone, and others (eds.), Dictionary of American Biography (New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons, 20 volumes, 1928; index and updating supplements), XII, 343; Schaw, Journal of a Lady of Quality, 105.

11 This paragraph is based on information in the Martin Papers, Add. MSS, CXXIX, 41475A, f. 57; Sir Lewis Namier and John Brooke, The History of Parliament, the House of Commons, 1754-1790 (London: Published for the History of Parliament Trust by Her Majesty’s Stationery Office, 3 volumes, 1964), III, 114-117, hereinafter cited as Namier and Brooke, History of Parliament; Schaw, Journal of a Lady of Quality, 263-264; F. A. Inderwick and others (eds.), A Calendar of the Inner Temple Records (London: Published by Order of the Masters of the Bench, 5 volumes, 1896-1936), IV, 231, 321; Franklin B. Wickwire, British Subministers and Colonial America, 1763-1783 (Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press, 1966), 63-64, 77-78.

12 Namier and Brooke, History of Parliament, III, 114-117.

13 There might be a clue to the identity of the mother of Samuel’s son in his will: “£30 a year to Mrs. Smith of the Isle of Wight.” Oliver, History of Antigua, II, 244.

14 There is a portrait of Samuel Martin, Jr., in Gentleman’s Magazine, LXXV (February, 1805), 122, but the specialists at the National Portrait Gallery and the Albert and Victoria Museum, London, cannot identify the artist. A photograph of the Hogarth portrait of Samuel Martin, Jr., is in Ronald Paulson, Hogarth: His Life, Art, and Times. (New Haven and London: Published for the Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art [London], Ltd., by the Yale University Press, 2 volumes, 1971), 246, 312, 366, 367, 420, hereinafter cited as Paulson, Hogarth. Hogarth bequeathed the Martin portrait to Samuel in 1764. Paulson, Hogarth, 508. In his will Samuel Martin bequeathed “my vol. of Hogarth prints given me by the author” to his brother Henry and his portrait by Hogarth to his brother William Byam Martin. Oliver, History of Antigua, II, 244.

15 Colonel Samuel Martin to Josiah Martin, December 15, 1762, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, VIII, 41353, ff. 69-70.

16 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., February 20, 1752, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 3-4.

17 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., December 21, 1752, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, f. 1.

18 [Charles?] Rollin, The Method of Teaching and Studying the Belles Lettres.... Translated from the French (London: Printed for W. Strahan, J. and F. Rivington, et al [Seventh Edition], 4 volumes, 1770).

19 Josiah Martin to Henry John Forfar, August 6, 1754, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 7-8.

20 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., December 14, 1754, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 7-8.

21 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., 1757, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, f. 11.

22 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., October 11, 1760, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 13-14.

23 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., October 11, 1760, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 13-14.

24 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., October 11, 1760, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 13-14.

25 For illnesses and diseases of North Carolinians in the eighteenth century see John Brickell, The Natural History of North Carolina (Dublin: Printed by J. Carson for the author, 1737; reissued, Murfreesboro, N.C.: Johnson Publishing Company, 1968), 9, 46-50, 74, 76, 82, 104, 130-131, 253, 396-397.

26 Uncle Josiah’s Long Island estate had two names, Rock Hall and the Hermitage. In formal records it is called Rock Hall; in the Martin private correspondence it is sometimes called the Hermitage.

27 James Sullivan and others (eds.), The Papers of Sir William Johnson (Albany: University of the State of New York, 14 volumes, 1921-1965), III, 950, hereinafter cited as Sullivan, Johnson Papers; warrant addressed to Lt. Gov. James De Lancey, December 29, 1768, appointing Josiah Martin as councillor for New York, Library of Congress, Washington, D.C., Manuscript Collections, Manuscript Transcripts of Great Britain, Public Record Office/Colonial Office 324.51.

28 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., January 6, 1760, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, f. 85. This letter is misdated; it should be dated 1761 because Martin mentions the recent death of King George II, who died in October, 1760.

29 Josiah Martin’s will dated March 30, 1773, “Abstracts of Wills on File in the Surrogate’s Office, City of New York, January 7, 1777-February 7, 1783,” Collections of the New-York Historical Society for the Year 1900 (New York: Printed for the Society, 1901), IX, 55-56.

30 Josiah Martin to Col. Samuel Martin, June 23, 1761, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 17-18.

31 Josiah Martin to Col. Samuel Martin, August 23, 1761, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 19-23.

32 Josiah Martin to Col. Samuel Martin, November 20, 1761, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 24-25.

33 William S. Price, Jr., “‘Men of Good Estates’: Wealth among North Carolina’s Royal Councillors,” North Carolina Historical Review, XLIX (January, 1972), 77.

34 Josiah Martin to Col. Samuel Martin, April 23, May 26, 1762, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 26-29.

35 Sullivan, Johnson Papers, III, 950.

36 Col. Samuel Martin to Josiah Martin, December 15, 1762, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, VIII, 41353, ff. 69-70.

37 Sullivan, Johnson Papers, III, 949-950; IV, 2.

38 Col. Samuel Martin to Josiah Martin, July 14, August 1, 1764, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41353, ff. 78, 80.

39 John Singleton Copley told his half-brother, Henry Pelham, in 1771 that he had seen a miniature of Governor Martin “by Miers which cost 30 Guineas and I think it worth the money. The Gover’r says he sat at least 50 times for it.” Letters and Papers of John Singleton Copley and Henry Pelham, 1739-1776 (Boston: Massachusetts Historical Society, 1914), 128. Evangeline Walker Andrews identified Miers as a London jeweller and portrait painter. Schaw, Journal of a Lady of Quality, 265. The specialists at the Victoria and Albert Museum, London, identify the artist Miers as Jeremiah Meyer. Graham Reynolds, Keeper of the Department of Prints & Drawings, Victoria and Albert Museum, to the author, July 3, 1974. The specialists at the National Portrait Gallery, London, reported that there was a portrait of Josiah Martin lent by Jefferey Whitehead, Esq., for the exhibition in the Burlington Fine Arts Club Miniatures Exhibition of 1889, Catalog No. 37, p. 56, but they could not identify the artist. Mary Cottrell, research assistant, National Portrait Gallery, London, February 24, 1972, to the author.

40 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., August 2, September 17, 1764, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 30-31.

41 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., July 8, 1767, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 107-108.

42 Richard B. Morris (ed.), Encyclopedia of American History (New York: Harper & Brothers, 1953), 76, hereinafter cited as Morris, Encyclopedia of American History.

43 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., August 7, 1767, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 110-113.

44 Philip Davidson, Propaganda and the American Revolution, 1763-1783 (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1941), 170-171; Arthur M. Schlesinger, Prelude to Independence: The Newspaper War on Britain, 1764-1776 (New York: Random House, 1957), 72, 77, 81, 83, 100, 111.

45 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., August 7, 1767, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 110-113.

46 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., August 7, 1767, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 110-113.

47 Namier and Brooke, History of Parliament, III, 116.

48 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., January 21, May 19, 1766, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 52-55, 58-59.

49 James W. Hayes, “The Social and Professional Background of the Officers of the British Army, 1714-1763” (unpublished master’s thesis, University of London, 1956), 125. For a definition of off-reckonings, see A Treatise on Military Finance (London: Printed for T. Egerton, at the Military Library, near Whitehall [Revised Edition], 1796), 13, hereinafter cited as Military Finance. This edition listed no author, but apparently it was based on John Williamson, A Treatise on Military Finance, published in London in 1782. In the revised edition the unnamed author wrote that his revision did not affect the off-reckonings and other deductions from the soldier’s pay that had been practiced for a number of years.

50 Military Finance, 17.

51 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., January 21, 1766, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 58-59.

52 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., September 1, 1766, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 62-64.

53 Military Finance, 6, 40.

54 John Shy, Toward Lexington: The Role of the British Army in the Coming of the American Revolution (Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press, 1965), 234-235, 346, 348, hereinafter cited as Shy, Toward Lexington.

55 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., July 11, 1766, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 60-61.

56 W. L. Grant and James Munro (eds.), Acts of the Privy Council of England, Colonial Series, The Unbound Papers (London: Published for His Majesty’s Stationery Office, 6 volumes, 1908-1912), VI, 433; Oliver, History of Antigua, II, 248.

57 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., September 1, 1766, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 62-64.

58 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., September 28, 1766, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 65-68.

59 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., October 2, 1766, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 69-71.

60 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., October 30, 1766, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 73-74.

61 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., November 25, 1766, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 75-76.

62 Josiah Martin to Miss Irish, December 5, 1766; to Samuel Martin, Jr., December 3, 1766; to James Hammond, December 5, 1766; to Jas. Robson, December 5, 1766, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 77-82, 85.

63 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., December 3, 1766, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 79-80.

64 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., March 3, 1767, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 97-98.

65 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., April 15, 1767, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 99-100.

66 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., March 3, 1767, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 97-98.

67 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., May 20, 1767, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, f. 104.

68 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin Jr., June 8, October 6, 1767, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 105, 121-122.

69 Samuel Martin, Jr., to Josiah Martin, January 30, 1768, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 123-127.

70 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., April 3, 1768, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 128-129.

71 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., May 4, 14, 1768, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 134, 136-138.

72 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., October 21, 1768, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 146-147.

73 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., October 29, 1768, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, f. 148.

74 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., April 17, May 23, 1769, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 156, 158-159.

75 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., May 23, 1769, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 158-159.

76 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., June 10, 1769, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 162-163.

77 Gov. William Woodly to Lt. Col. Josiah Martin, June 14, 1769; Lt. Col. Josiah Martin to Gov. William Woodly, June 27, 1769, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, f. 166.

78 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., July 27, 1769, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 164-165.

79 Samuel Martin, Jr., to Josiah Martin, August 2, 1769, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 167-169. The purchase price of a lieutenant colonelcy was £3,500. Shy, Toward Lexington, 347.

80 Samuel Martin, Jr., to Josiah Martin, August 2, 1769, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 167-169.

81 Samuel Martin, Jr., to Josiah Martin, August 4, 1769, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, f. 170.

82 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., October 14, 1769; Josiah Martin to James Meyrick, October 14, 1769, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 178-182.

83 Samuel Martin, Jr., to Josiah Martin, August 4, 1769, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, f. 170.

84 For a discussion of the end of absentee officeholding in the colonies, see Helen Taft Manning, British Colonial Government after the American Revolution, 1782-1820 (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1933), 30-31.

85 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., October 6, 1769, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 176-177.

86 Journal of the Commissioners for Trade and Plantations (London: Published by His Majesty’s Stationery Office, 14 volumes [April, 1704, to May, 1782], 1920-1938), VIII, 188, 199-200, hereinafter cited as Journal of the Commissioners for Trade and Plantations.

87 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., May 24, 1770, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 187-190.

88 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., August 17, 1770, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 191-194.

89 For more details on the effects of the Townshend and Quartering Acts, consult John Richard Alden, The American Revolution, 1775-1783 (New York: Harper & Brothers, 1954); Oscar Theodore Barck, Jr., and Hugh Talmage Lefler, Colonial America (New York: Macmillan Company [Second Edition], 1968); or Morris, Encyclopedia of American History.

90 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., August 17, 1770, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 191-194.

91 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., September 7, 1770, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 195-196.

92 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., September 22, 1770, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 197-200.

93 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., October 5, 1770, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 201-202.

94 Journal of the Commissioners for Trade and Plantations, VIII, 115, 116.

95 Journal of the Commissioners for Trade and Plantations, VIII, 218.

96 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., March 3, 1771, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 203-204.

97 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., March 3, 1771, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 203-204. The English newspaper reporting the appointment has not been identified, but there is a reference to “Henry Martin, Esq. to be Gov. of North Carolina” in Gentleman’s Magazine and Historical Chronicle, XL (December, 1770), 591.

98 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., March 3, 1771, October 5, 1770, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 203-204, 201-202.

99 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., March 3, 1771, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 203-204.

100 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., March 3, April 2, May 7, June 4, 1771, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 203-204, 205-208, 213-214. James Rivington commented that Josiah Martin had been delayed in going to North Carolina because of the operation for a fistula. James Rivington to Sir William Johnson, May 6, 1771, in Sullivan, Johnson Papers, VIII, 98.

101 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., March 3, 1771, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 203-204.

102 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., March 3, 1771, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 203-204.

103 This paragraph is based on Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., March 3, 1771, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 203-204.

104 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., March 3, 1771, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 203-204.

105 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., March 3, 1771, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 203-204.

106 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., April 2, May 7, 1771, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 205-208.

107 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., May 16, 1771, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 209-210.

108 For a brief history of the Regulators, see Hugh T. Lefler and William S. Powell, Colonial North Carolina: A History (New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1973), 217-239; for a more detailed account, see William S. Powell, James K. Huhta, and Thomas J. Farnham (eds.), The Regulators in North Carolina: A Documentary History, 1759-1776 (Raleigh: State Department of Archives and History, 1971), hereinafter cited as Powell and others, Regulators. The reader is also referred to Alonzo Thomas Dill, Governor Tryon and His Palace (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1955), 132-139, 141-147, 152-153, 166-167; and to George R. Adams, “The Carolina Regulators: A Note on Changing Interpretations,” North Carolina Historical Review, XLIX (October, 1972), 345-352.

109 Powell and others, Regulators, 250-258.

110 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., May 16, 1771, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 209-210.

111 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., May 16, 1771, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 209-210.

112 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., June 4, 1771, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 213-214.

113 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., June 27, 1771, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 217-218.

114 Powell and others, Regulators, 451.

115 William L. Saunders (ed.), The Colonial Records of North Carolina (Raleigh: State of North Carolina, 10 volumes, 1886-1890), VIII, 627, hereinafter cited as Saunders, Colonial Records.

116 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., July 9, 1771, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 219-220; Powell and others, Regulators, 504.

117 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., August 21, 1771, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 223-224.

118 Powell and others, Regulators, 504.

119 Josiah Martin to Samuel Martin, Jr., July 20, 1771, Martin Papers, Add. MSS, XVI, 41361, ff. 221-222.

120 Powell and others, Regulators, 503.

121 Powell and others, Regulators, 504.

122 Powell and others, Regulators, 498.

123 Saunders, Colonial Records, IX, 15.

124 Powell and others, Regulators, 504; Saunders, Colonial Records, IX, 15-16.

125 Samuel A’Court Ashe, History of North Carolina, Vol. I: From 1584 to 1783 (Greensboro: Charles L. Van Noppen, 1908); Vol. II: From 1783 to 1925 (Raleigh: Edwards & Broughton Printing Company, 1925), I, 396-397.

126 James Iredell to Henry E. McCulloh, March 5, 1771, Charles E. Johnson Collection, Archives, Division of Archives and History, Raleigh.

127 Powell and others, Regulators, 476.

128 Samuel Johnston to Thomas Barker, June 10, 1771, Calendar of Manuscripts in the Hayes Collection of John G. Wood, Southern Historical Collection, University of North Carolina Library, Chapel Hill.

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