February 1736 in Georgia

from the website Glynn County, History and Lore so that those who wish to better understand the context of the Wesleys might do so. -- ed.

Arriving back in England, he [General Oglethorpe] was welcomed home with great enthusiasm. The Red Men he took with him, in native costumes, with strange sounding names, caused a sensation. Poems were written in their honor, a medal was struck to commemorate the visit and celebrations were held by nobility and common folk alike.

Oglethorpe did have several fences to mend. There had been criticism of his prohibition of rum, brandy, and other distilled spirits; and to his objection to the introduction of negro slavery into the colony. After all, these were of much profit to business and to the Crown! Yet, with eloquent presentation to Parliament of the problems brought by drink and slavery, and with the further consideration that in a military outpost everyone should bear arms (prohibited to slaves), an agreement was ratified to continue these prohibitions. Some dissatisfaction of the Trustees with the accounting of their funds was allayed when they found that Oglethorpe had expended his own fortune for the colony, proof enough of his honesty. They did deem it wise to send along a secretary to keep better records and to provide them with more complete information than they had been receiving. [Charles Wesley was selected.]

King George shared Oglethorpe's vision of Georgia's potential. The Trustees renewed their support now that they had heard first hand of the success of the colony. So now James Oglethorpe could again leave for America. This time the task ahead was a military one if he was to challenge the Spanish. Settlers for this new, exposed, frontier location need be trustworthy and industrious. They need have a variety of useful crafts and talents such as carpenter, blacksmith, farmer, doctor, shoemaker. The trustees seemed to prefer Salzburgers (persecuted Protestants from Germany) and Scottish Highlanders. So it was, that a carefully selected group of forty families-about 230 persons, only a few more than one-third of them men-arrived off Peeper Island (later known as Cockspur Island) in the mouth of the Savannah river in February, 1736.

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