The Royal Colony of North Carolina

The Neuse-Cape Fear Road

Whether this was the idea of the Lords Proprietors, Governor Charles Eden, or Governor George Burrington will be debated by many. However, Governor Eden died before construction was even started in late 1722.

Within two years a rough road was cut and expanded from New Bern along the Neuse River down to the quickly growing Cape Fear region. This important road brought the isolated Albemarle region in direct contact with the burgeoning Cape Fear region, with many northeastern settlers finally having an overland route to the fertile lands along the way.

In 1732, the Neuse-Cape Fear Road was incorporated into the newly-established King's Highway, which ran all the way from Boston to Savannah by 1735. Parts of the King's Highway were built in northern colonies starting in the 1670s. The last part connected Virginia to South Carolina and was completed in North Carolina around 1734.

With the King's Highway completed, North Carolina could be traversed from north to south (or vice versa) on land for the first time. Before 1734, this was done only by ships sailing along the coastline. The new King's Highway was certainly not faster, but it did offer many the opportunity to pack up and move themselves without incurring the cost of sailing ships, river boats, and all the hoisting, loading, and unloading which that entailed.

© 2007 - J.D. Lewis - PO Box 1188 - Little River, SC 29566 - All Rights Reserved