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Wake County’s “Birth Certificate”

The bill of the General Assembly creating Wake County in 1771 reads in part:

On the outside of the paper when folded, “A Bill for Erecting Part of Johnston Cumberland and Orange counties into a Seperate and distinct County by the Name of Wake County and St. Margaret’s Parish ________ purposes. In the Assembly this 7th Dec 1770 read the first time and passed by order Jas Green Jr Clk Sent by Mr Lane of Mr Gibson In the Upper House 17 Dec 1770 read the first time & passed by order _____ Clk In the Assembly the 26 December 1770. Read the second time amended and passed By order J Green jr Clk Sent by Mr Dawson and Mr Gray In the upper house 26th Dec. 1770 In the assembly 1 Jan of 1771 Read the third time amended & passed By order J Green Jr Clk Sent by Mr. M McKinnie & Mr Rutherford In the upper House 3rd Jan of 1771 read the third time & passed By Order __________ Clk Ordered to be Engrossed”

The opening paragraphs, “Whereas the large extent of the said Counties of Johnston Cumberland and Orange renders it greivous and Burthensome to many of the Inhabitants thereof to attend the Courts General Musters and other Public Meetings
“It is Enacted by the Governors Council and Assembly and by the Authority of the same that ____ and after the fourth day of March next after the passing of the Act the said Counties of Johnston Cumberland and Orange be divided by the following lines—that ___ ___ __ Edgecombe line Monksson(?) Swamp a mile above James Lees Plantation ____ing a forest line to Neuse River at the upper end of John Geddings Fields Plantation then to David Mimms Mill Creek between Mimms Mill and Turners old mill Then the same Course continued to that Ridge which Divides Cumberland and Johnston in counties then a Straight line to Orange line. a little below Richard Hills plantation on Buch (?) Inn Then the same Course continued five miles then to the corner of Johnston County on Granville Line then with the same line and ___ line to Edgecombe line and along Edgecombe line to the Beginning be then _____ erected into a distinct county and parish by the name of Wake County and St. Margaret’s parish.


What visitors say

Thank you so much for leading us on a guided tour of the Joel Lane House! I had no idea that the kitchen was separate from the main house, and how different the two are. I had always assumed that the most dangerous job for a slave was in the fields, but your expertise showed me that the kitchen (because of the heat and potential for fire) was actually the most dangerous for a slave woman…

Maggie