With these Our Instructions you will receive Our Warrant under Our Royal Sign Manual constituting you Our Commissioner for supervising, inspecting and controlling Our Revenues, and the
2. In order to ascertain and secure the rights both of us and Our Subjects in respect to Grants of Lands claimed in the said two Provinces of South and North Carolina or either of them as made in the time of the Lords Proprietors; and to quiet all disputes now depending there in relation thereto, and likewise in order to supervise all Warrants and Grants of Lands in either of the said Provinces that have been issued and passed since the Property in the Soil thereof became vested in Us, you are to inspect the several books of the Land Office, Secretary's and Surveyor's Offices, in each of the said Provinces, and to order and direct the Clerks in those respective Offices to lay before you Copies or Extracts of all the Warrants entered or lodged therein, that have been issued for Lands since 1716. and of all Grants that have been made in pursuance thereof, and of all Surveys and Returns that have been made by virtue of such Warrants.
3. You are also to inspect and examine into the Accounts of the Receivers of our Revenues arising in South and North Carolina, and to order and direct them to lay before you an Accompt of all the Quitrents they have received, at what time, and from whom, distinguishing such Accompts as have been audited from those that have not; and in order to prove the truth of those Accompts, you are to direct Our Deputy Auditors in the said Provinces to give you the particulars of such accompts as they have audited; and that you may be better able to inform yourself what Persons have paid their Quitrents, and which of them have not, you are to order the said Receivers to lay before you copies or Extracts of all Receipts that have been given for the payment of Quitrents since 1716. And likewise to exhibit to you all Books and Vouchers in their possession that belonged to any former Receivers.
4. And when you shall have made a careful and diligent enquiry to find out the present possessors of Lands in either of the two said Provinces claiming to hold the same, either under Proprietory Grants, or by virtue of Warrants or Grants derived from us, In case any of the said Grants appear to you to have been obtained
5. And as an encouragement to such Land holders to come in and be obedient to your summons, you are to assure them that upon their complyance with such summons, We will be graciously pleased, as an indulgence to such as hold Lands by virtue of Patents granted by the late Lords Proprietors before the year 1727. to order their Titles to be confirmed, provided they were in actual possession of the Lands at that time or had surveys regularly made and returned, and on condition likewise that they register their Grants regularly, and claim no more Lands than are mentioned in their Patents, And that in case they appear to be in possession of a surplus of Land, We are graciously pleased in such case to admit them to take out new Patents for the same, subject to the Quitrents of 4s. Proclamation money per hundred acres, prescribed by Our Royal Instructions to Our Governors there.
6. And in the Cases of Persons claiming Lands by virtue of Patents under the Lords Proprietors, which Patents they alledge to be destroyed by Fire or otherwise, but of which they may not be able to make full proof, nor of the conditions on which the Grants were passed, you are to admit such Persons to take out new Grants at the accustomed and proper Office for the said Lands, subject to the Quitrents of four shillings, Proclamation money for hundred acres; But as to such as shall make full proof of their having had Patents from the Lords Proprietors before the year 1727. and of the conditions on which they were granted, they are to hold their Lands agreeable to the terms and conditions of
7. And as to all Persons claiming Lands by virtue of and under Patents derived from the Lords Proprietors since 1727. upon producing to you the same Patents, and having the same regularly endorsed by you mentioning the conditions following, that is to say, the paying of 4s. Proclamation money for every hundred acres contained in their Grant, and that they bind themselves down to the usual terms and conditions of settlement; In such case the producing the Letters Patents, and your Indorsement thereon shall be evidence of the Grantees right, provided the same be regularly registered in the Auditors Office there, within six months next after the date of such your Indorsement.
8. And whereas Sir Richard Everard, when Governor of North Carolina under the Lords Proprietors, in or about the year 1729. granted several tracts of Land in North Carolina, in consideration of the trouble and expense of the Commissioners for running the Boundary Line between the Province of Virginia, We are graciously pleased to declare and grant that every such Person or Persons as shall fully prove before you, and to your satisfaction their right of Purchase under that claim, shall be admitted to hold their Lands on the conditions in their Grants, reckoning every thousand acres of Land as an equivalent for ten pounds sterling due to them, or to such Persons under whom they lawfully claim; You are therefore hereby required to take such proof or proofs, which proofs when taken (if found agreable to our instructions) and your allowance thereof, being recorded within six months after in the said Auditors Office, shall be sufficient evidence of the original right to the quantity of Land by the said proportion limited; An Extract of which proofs you are at the same time to transmit to the Commissioners of our Treasury, and Our Commissioners for Trade and Plantations.
9. And whereas many disputes have been occasioned by the pretended rights of Persons in Albemarle County in North Carolina, by virtue of what they term their Grand Deed or Charter, being in fact, as We are given to understand, only a temporary provision. Yet nevertheless in order to settle and determine the Property of such Persons as claim Lands in that County under that right, you are to permit all persons claiming Lands in the said County by
10. You are likewise to give notice to all persons claiming Lands by virtue of Warrants which have not been regularly carried into Execution, the Possessors whereof have not taken out regular Grants for those Lands, or settled them comformable to our Instructions to our Governors, That they are to perfect their Grants forthwith, agreably to the said Instructions, And in all things to comply therewith, or that otherwise the Lands granted to them by warrant shall be disposed of to such Foreigners or others as shall come to settle in the said Provinces.
11. You are further to give notice to all such Persons who, after having taken out Grants in pursuance of their Warrants have not however seated their Lands, nor paid Quitrents for the same, agreably to the terms of their Grants, that they shall be forthwith prosecuted for such their Default, unless they immediately comply with the conditions of their Grants.
12. And you are to give notice to all persons who hold greater quantitys of Land than they are entitled unto by their Grants, that they may appear before you at such convenient time and place as you shall appoint within six months from the dates of your several summons, and there produce to you an Accompt of such surplus Lands; and in default of their appearing before you with a true accompt thereof, you are to certify the same to our Attorney General, who is to proceed there, without delay according to Law, in such cases, against such Defaulters.
13. And unto all such as shall duly comply with these our instructions in proving their Original Titles before you, you are to grant Certificates or Testimonials of the truth thereof, that in pursuance thereof their Grants may be confirmed according to the terms and conditions herein before directed.
14. And for the more effectually carrying the premises into Execution, if it shall so happen that any person or persons shall refuse or neglect to obey or comply with these our orders and directions,
15. And whereas many inconveniencies have arisen from the want of a proper regulation in the Land Offices in Our said two Provinces of South and North Carolina, in which they are expressly enjoyned not to grant any more Lands than in the proportion of fifty Acres to each person in the Grantees family, which number it was Our Royal Intention should have been seated and cultivated by the persons for whom the same were so granted, in relation to which We are given to understand that in many instances Our orders have been evaded; For remedy thereof, We are therefore graciously pleased to declare that it is Our Royal Will and pleasure that all persons petitioning for Lands shall, previous to their obtaining a Warrant thereupon, prove their Rights to such Lands before the Governor and Council, when at least four Members of Council shall be present, not having any concern or Interest in the Lands petitioned for, And that if the Lands so petitioned for are granted accordingly, In such Case the Warrants for granting the same be thereupon drawn up and signed by Our said Governor in Council and made returnable by the Surveyor within twelve months at farthest from the Dates thereof; And that a particular description of the Lands petitioned for be inserted in the Warrants, and that before the Warrants shall be delivered to the Surveyor, a Docquet thereof be entred in the Auditor's Office there, And that in default of any of the said particulars being observed the said Grants shall be void.
16. And we do further declare it to be Our Royal Will and pleasure that when the Warrants shall be returned agreably to the Directions contained in our aforegoing Instruction, the Grants shall
17. You are likewise to make strict enquiry into the methods used in our said Provinces in collecting, receiving and accompting for Our Quitrents and other Revenues; And in case you find any fraud, concealment, irregularity or neglect therein, you are to use your utmost endeavours for redressing the same, and to establish a proper method whereby the same may be prevented for the future, And whereby Our Auditor or his Deputy may be enabled more effectually to checque and controll the Accompts exhibited by Our Receivers; And if it shall appear necessary to apply to the Legislature in either of the said Provinces for a new Act of Assembly for the more effectual ascertaining and the more speedy and regular collecting of Our Quitrents, you are to prepare the proper heads of such a Bill as you shall think may most effectually conduce to procuring the good Ends proposed, in such manner as shall be most for the ease of Our subjects, before Our Governor and Council there for their Concurrence therein, Provided always that if any Act of Assembly shall pass agreable thereto, the same shall not be made to take effect till the same be approved by Us at home.
18. You are to take especial notice that it is Our Royal Will and Pleasure, that neither you nor any of your Clerks or substitutes shall ask, demand or receive, under any pretence whatsoever, any Fee or Reward from any of Our Subjects for anything by you or them done in obedience and conformity to these Our Instructions and the Commission to which the same relate.
19. And Our Pleasure is, that the Provost Marshalls or their Deputies in each of Our said Provinces respectively, do transmit and send such Letters, Summons or other Orders as you shall judge necessary to be served within their respective Districts for Our
20. And Lastly, You are upon all occasions to send unto the Commissioners of Our Treasury, and Commissioners for Trade and Plantations a particular Account of all your proceedings, and of the State and condition of Our Quitrents and Revenues and all other the Affairs under your Inspection, together with such observations and informations as you shall judge necessary for Our service; Taking care that an Entry of Our Royal Commission to you, aforementioned, And of these Our Instructions relating thereto be made before Our Commissioners for Trade and Plantations, and in the Office of the Auditor and Surveyor General of Our Revenues arising in America, within six months from the date hereof.
Given at Our Court at St James's this sixteenth day of May 1739, In the twelfth year of Our Reign.
Entered in the Office of the Rt Honble Horatio Walpole Esqr Auditor and Surveyor General of his Majesty's Revenues in America, at Whitehall, this 24th day of May 1739.