Governor Seth Sothel's Executive Council

Dates: 1682 to 1689 (Albemarle)

Location Met: Unknown

In 1679, Seth Sothel (also spelled Sothell and Southwell) purchased Edward Hyde, 1st Earl of Clarendon's interest in the Proprietorship from his son Henry Hyde, 2nd Earl of Clarendon, so he was now one of the Lords Proprietors. Since he was the first of the Lords Proprietors willing to go to the Province, he was also appointed as the governor of Albemarle County (North Carolina) in 1679, and later assumed the governorship of Charles Town (South Carolina) in 1690.

After leaving England, however, Governor Seth Sothel was captured by Algerian pirates and held for ransom. Pending his release the infant colony was governed first by John Harvey and upon his death by John Jenkins, Harvey having been appointed by the Lords Proprietors and Jenkins selected by the Executive Council. During this period much order was restored and there was little indication of political disturbance.

In late 1682, Seth Sothel, being finally released from captivity, arrived in Carolina to take charge of the government in Albermarle County.

In July of 1689, a Record of Writ was signed by Governor Seth Sothel and four known members of his Executive Council:
- William Wilkinson
- Thomas Jarvis
- Thomas Miller
- John Hurt
Various records of his tenure include mentioning the following men who were named as members of his Council:
- Henderson Walker
- William Duckenfield
There are no extant records of any meetings of the Executive Council under Seth Sothel.
Dates: 1690 to 1692 (Charles Town)

Location Met: Charles Town

Seth Sothel took over the government in Charles Town sometime in 1690. He remained in office until the day that Philip Ludwell arrived and publicly read a letter from the Lords Proprietors asserting that Sothel was kicked out of office - the date Ludwell took office and publicly kicked out Sothel was April 11, 1692.
On May 13, 1691, the Lords Proprietors sent a letter to James Colleton informing him that they had learned that Seth Sothel kicked out Paul Grimball as Secretary and replaced him with George Muschamp. Sothel also kicked out Joseph Blake from being a Deputy as well as several others. On this same date, the Lords Proprietors appointed John Comings as Deputy for the Deceased Christopher Monck, 2nd Duke of Albemarle, whose proprietorship was still languishing in court for want of a true heir - it was not resolved until 1694.
On May 27, 1691, the Lords Proprietors ordered the governor (Seth Sothel) to remove George Muschamp, John Beresford, and John Harris as "pretended Deputies." On the same date, the Lords Proprietors appointed Richard Conant as Clerk of the Crown and Clerk of the Peace.
On November 8, 1691, the Lords Proprietors commissioned Philip Ludwell as the next governor of Charles Town. On the same date, they issued a letter to Seth Sothel informing him that he was no longer governor of Charles Town and that he needed to travel to London and meet with them. He did not.
On April 11, 1692, Philip Ludwell was sworn in as the next governor of Charles Town and he publicly notified the citizens of Charles Town that Seth Sothel was no longer governor. Sothel did not leave quietly, and when he did, he quietly returned to his home in Albemarle County and died soon thereafter.
This Author has not found any records of the Executive Council under Gevernor Seth Sothel. If any become available, summaries will be provided herein.

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John Gibbs's Council >>

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Philip Ludwell's Council >>


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