Could there come a time
when you won't be able to
get canning lids?
need to preserve
The Native Americans
of the Carolinas can be broken into four categories,
the Paleo-Indians, Archaic, Woodland, and Historic.
The Paleo-Indians first arrived over 10,000 years
ago, but not much is known about them. The environment
they lived in was very different than it is today.
Glacial ice didn't cover North Carolina, like it
did over most of North America, but the climate
was still very cold and wet. During this time there
were also a variety of animals that are now extinct,
such as the saber tooth tiger and the mastodon.
The Paleo-Indians lived in small bands of approximately
fifty people. They were nomadic and followed herds
of large animals. At Morrow Mountain State Park
you can still see evidence of where Paleo-Indians
gathered material for their spears.
The next group to
occupy North Carolina were the Archaic Indians.
These people were more sedentary than the Paleo-Indians
because they relied on plant food and small game,
eliminating the need to follow large herds closely.
These Indians began making a variety of stone tools
and projectile points. The Archaic culture gradually
transitioned into the Woodland culture around 500
The Woodland Indians
were noted for important advancements in pottery,
agriculture, and tool making. They made paddles,
pipes, and used the bow and arrow for hunting. They
also began domesticating crops, and by 1200 A.D.
the North Carolina Woodlanders were cultivating
corn, beans, sunflowers and squash.
By the early 16th
century the Woodland period had transformed into
the Historic period. The Historic Indians shared
similarities with the Woodlanders and spoke a similar
language, but the Historic Indians had distinct
and more modern traits of their own. Tribes in the
Piedmont area spoke Siouan languages, while other
North Carolina tribes spoke Iroquoian. The Creek
Indians migrated from present-day Georgia and Alabama
and settled in the southern part of North Carolina
in 1450, uprooting Siouan tribes who were settled
in the Pee Dee River Valley. The Creek built dwellings,
raised crops, and lived in the area for a hundred
years before the Siouan tribes took back the land
in 1550. The Cherokees migrated to North Carolina
as well but they came from the north and settled
in the Appalachian Mountains. The Cherokees lived
in permanent towns of about twenty to sixty families.
They raised corn and hunted for survival. With the
arrival of Europeans, the lives of these tribes
would be changed forever. The tribes were forced
to relocate, and between 1777 and 1819 the Cherokees
ceded 8,927 square miles of their homeland to white
men. In the winter of 1838-39, they were forced
out of the state altogether. Some Cherokee descendents
remain in North Carolina, and a traditional Cherokee
village has been reconstructed in Oconaluftee, in
The Early Explorers
The French, Spanish,
and English have all explored the area that is now
called North Carolina. In 1524, Giovanni da Verranzzano
was hired by the French to explore the Atlantic
and landed in what is now Cape Fear. In 1540, the
Spaniard Hernando de Soto and his legion of 600
men explored the southern interior of the state
and became the first Europeans to see the Appalachian
The English were the
next Europeans to explore North Carolina, and the
first to claim it. North Carolina was included as
part of Virginia in the 1606 land grant. The first
settlement in what is now North Carolina was actually
an extension of Jamestown, Virginia. The land that
became North Carolina was explored slowly at first.
It wasn't until mid-17th century that interest in
the region intensified after Virginia settlements
stabilized and land began to run out. Poor Virginians
and new immigrants looked south for land in the
Albemarle region, and in 1655 North Carolina had
its first permanent settlers. Nathaniel Batts is
noted as North Carolina's first settler. Migrants
from Virginia settled along the banks of the Pasquotank,
Perquimans, and Chowan Rivers, all having to bargain
with local Indians for land. These early settlers
had a difficult time and faced many obstacles while
establishing North Carolina. The level of civilization
was so low that it was hard for the farmers to earn
money from their tobacco crops.
Royal Province to Royal Colony
When Charles II took
the throne in 1663, he gave charters to eight courtiers
known as the Lords Proprietors. The charter included
land from north of Florida to the Albemarle Sound
region. North Carolina was founded in 1669 when
the Proprietors' first expedition of one hundred
men and women arrived to found Charleston. As the
tobacco business began to flourish, settlers from
Virginia would begin moving into North Carolina
in larger numbers. By 1729, Carolina became its
own Royal Colony.