Wednesday, February 26, 2014

William Churton, Orange County’s First Register of Deeds

When Orange County, North Carolina was first created in 1752, the Governor appointed several prominent land owners in the new county to organize their first county government.  Among the offices to be filled by them was the Register of Deeds – the person to whom the land records of the people of Orange County were to be entrusted.  To fulfill this role, the new county government chose Orange County’s pre-eminent surveyor, William Churton. In addition to being Register of Deeds, Churton would serve at various times in his life as Surveyor General of North Carolina, surveyor for Earl Granville’s Land Office, and a member of the lower house of the colonial Assembly.[1]

William Churton was born in 1710 in London, to a Gloucestershire family. He came to America in the 1740s, but the exact date is uncertain. Churton’s educational background is also not known with certainty, but he may have attended the Naval officer school at Christ Hospital in London. Regardless, it is clear from his life’s work – the hundreds upon hundreds of surveys he made – that he was 1) very well-educated, 2) artistically talented, and 3) mathematically gifted.  He was also a man with much practical knowledge of the craft of surveying.  Not only are Churton’s surveys detailed and accurate, but they are so numerous that they make up a significant percentage of the North Carolina Piedmont.

The Jefferson-Fry Map

In 1749, the Colony of Virginia and Earl Granville appointed surveyors to extend the colonial boundary west from Peter’s Creek where William Byrd et al. left off in 1728. North Carolina’s delegation consisted of William Churton and Granville County Clerk of Court Daniel Weldon; Virginia's appointees were Peter Jefferson and Joshua Fry. Peter Jefferson had to leave his 6-year-old son at home during this survey, but young Thomas would grow up to be an outstanding surveyor himself.[2] Churton, Weldon, Fry and the father of the future President surveyed another 90 miles to Steep Rock Creek near the Holston River.[3],%20New%20Jersey%20and%20North%20Carolina.%20Drawn%20by%20Joshua%20Fry%20%26%20Peter%20Jefferson%20in%201751.

Churton apparently shared much of his knowledge of North Carolina with Fry and Jefferson. The Virginians published their classic map of Virginia just two years later, including the northern parts of North Carolina - clearly using data obtained from Churton. The 1755 second edition of the Jefferson-Fry map apparently includes still more detail supplied by Churton.[4]


Bishop August Gottlieb Spangenburg of the Moravian Church sought to establish a Moravian settlement in the North Carolina Piedmont in the early 1750’s. Churton was the surveyor for the 98,925 acres that Granville granted the Unitas Fratrum. That land was named Wachau or Wachovia and includes much of what is now Forsyth County, NC.[5]

Although Spangenburg’s Diary referred to Churton as "certainly a reasonable man" and "excessively scrupulous," Spangenburg was not entirely impressed by Churton’s policies:
“The surveyors have strict orders from Lord Granville's agent to run lines only north and south, east and west. The agent may have reasons for this which seem to him sufficiently important, and it may be practicable in the eastern counties where there are no hills, or only very small ones, but here it is quite different, and often inconvenient. If a strip of land lies north-west and south-east I have to include corners of land to finish out the north and south lines, even when the land is not worth a heller. I have spoken much about this to the surveyor, Mr. William Churton, an otherwise tractable man, but he insists that these are his orders and that he dare not disobey them. The only thing he will do is to make offsets in the lines where too much barren land would be included . . . In the Warrant from Lord Granville it is stated that we are to pay £3 Sterling for the survey of each 5000 acres. He interprets that to mean that we must take tracts of that size . . . We would be only too glad if that were possible, but here at the edge of the mountains we could only do it by including many, and often barren, hills . . .”[6]

“[O]rdinarily our surveyor measures and marks only three sides of a tract. He considers it unnecessary to run the fourth side, and says it is here a lawful survey when only three sides have been measured.”[7]
Granville granted William Churton 663 ac in trust for Francis Corbin in 1754 and the Town of Hillsborough was established on this land. The year before, Granville had likewise granted Churton and Richard Vigers 635 acres on which to create the Town of Salisbury.[8]

Enoch Lewis helped Churton in the surveying of Hillsborough and James Taylor may also have helped.[9]
Churton lived year-round in Hillsborough from 1757 until his death in 1767. From 1752 to 1763, Churton was the Register of Deeds of Orange County, though deputy register William Reed often filled in while Churton was away on surveying expeditions. Churton served in the legislature from 1754 to 1762. Churton also served on the Hillsborough town board from 1759 to his death.[10]

The Collet Map

From 1757 or before, Churton had been working on a new map of North Carolina – with a great amount of new and corrected detail based upon his own surveys. Because he was the surveyor of the Granville District – the northern 40% of North Carolina – he was less familiar with the southern areas. For that part of his map he relied upon old maps that he had collected. But the southern portions of the map proved to be highly inaccurate – or at least unacceptably so for Churton. So in 1767 he ripped off the southern half of the map and began surveying in the southern part of North Carolina in an effort to complete the map. Near the end of that year, Churton died suddenly.[11]

Churton's will was probated in January 1768.[12] He left several town lots and a rural tract to certain heirs in London. Churton left to Edmund Fanning the rest of his significant land holdings and all of his papers except the manuscript map. The still incomplete map of North Carolina Churton left to Governor Tryon, who remarked upon it: "I am inclined to think there is not so perfect a draft of so extensive an interior country in any other colony in America."[13]

To complete Churton’s map, Tryon hired Captain John Collet of Fort Johnston. Tryon seems not to have been entirely satisfied with Collet’s corrections, but the map was nevertheless published in London in 1770 as "A Compleat MAP of NORTH CAROLINA from an actual survey of Capn Collet.” It’s well known today as the Collet map, but perhaps should more properly be called the Churton-Collet map.[14]

It’s interesting to note that while many officers of Earl Granville’s land office were widely reputed to be corrupt, Granville’s Surveyor from 1749 onward William Churton was never implicated. The Assembly’s report on the misdeeds of John Bodley and Francis Corbin details several improprieties on the parts of Corbin, Bodley and John Carter (Churton’s predecessor), but Churton came through unscathed.  Writing to Earl Granville in 1756, Harmon Husband complained of Carter, but conceded “latterly Orange was given to William Churton who does much better.”[15]

[1] Bedini, Silvio A, William Churton (fl. 1749-1767) North Carolina Cartographer, Professional Surveyor Magazine, July/Aug/Sept 2001.
[2] Although Thomas is perhaps better remembered as founder of the University of Virginia, author of the Declaration of Independence and the third President of the United States.
[3] 4 Colonial Records of North Carolina xiii. Dictionary of North Carolina Biography, entry on Daniel Weldon, volume 6, page 157.
[4] Smith, Marshall L, The Young Man from Mitre Court, William Churton, Surveyor, 1710-1767, Hillsborough: self-published, 1998.
[5] Bedini. Smith. 
[6] The Diary of Bishop Spangenburg, 5 Colonial Records of North Carolina 4.
[7] The Diary of Bishop Spangenburg as cited in Bedini.
[8] Bedini. Smith.
[9] Bedini.
[10] Bedini.
[11] Bedini. Smith.
[12] Dictionary of North Carolina Biography, entry on Edmund Fanning, volume 2, page 182.
[13] Bedini. Smith.
[14] Smith.
[15] Ekirck, A Roger, A New Government of Liberty: Hermon Husband’s Vision of Backcountry North Carolina, William & Mary Quarterly, Third Series, Vol XXXIV, No 4, October 1977, page 638.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Preliminary Checklist of Published Abstracts of North Carolina Deed Books

Anson – Pruitt, Albert Bruce, Abstracts of Deeds, Anson County, NC, A.B. Pruitt, 1998. Volumes:
1.       Books 4, 7, & B2 (1757-1795)
2.       Books H1, K, & H (1767-1787)
3.       Books D, C2, & E (1790-1799)
4.       Deed Books F, G, H2, L, & M (1793-1809)
5.       Deed Books N, S, O, & P (1804-1816)
6.       Deed Books Q, R, T, & U (1814-1825)
7.       Deed Books V, W, & X (1824-1831)
8.       Books Y & Z (1831-1838)
9.       Books 10, 11, & 12 (1839-1849)
10.   Deed Books 13 & 14 (1849-1854)
11.   Cumulative Index (1749-1854)

Anson Holcomb, Brent, Anson County, North Carolina, deed abstracts, 1749-1766, abstracts of wills & estates, 1749-1795, Baltimore: Genealogical Publ Co, 1980. Holcomb had previously self-publised Anson Co, NC Deed Abstracts in 1974 – presumably subsumed by the 1980 book. Holcomb indexed only people, not places.

Anson – McBee, May Wilson, Anson County, North Carolina Abstracts of Early Records, self-published, 1950.

Bath – Norris, Allen Wilkinson Hart, Beaufort County, North Carolina Deed Book I, 1696-1729: Records of Bath County, North Carolina, Washington, NC: Beaufort Co Gen Soc, 2003. This book was produced from microfilm reel #C.009.4001 at the Archives. Norris writes on page 4:

“These abstracts were proofed against the photostatic copy in the Beaufort County Courthouse and when necessary against the original volume located at the North Carolina Division of Archives and History in Raleigh, NC. Jane Stubbs Bailey, Louise Miller Cowell and John H Oden III proofread and compared each word in each entry to obtain the most accurate abstract possible . . .
The original Deed Books of Bath County have not been found. The early books (BK A-H) were transcribed in the early 1800’s into what we know today as Beaufort County Deed Book I, which contains Book 1 through part of Book 10 [of the old Bath County records]. This is an imperfect transcription as evidenced by the 1835 Report, which enumerated many omitted items . . .
There is a break in the existing records between 1710 and 1715, caused by the Tuscarora War. Also, reference is made by Levi Truewhitt, County Clerk, to earlier deeds recorded by Charles Smith, County Clerk. This earlier book has not been found.”

Beaufort - Brayton, John Anderson, Abstracts of Beaufort County, North Carolina, Deed Book 2, 1729-1748, Baltimore, Md.: Otter Bay Books, 2011.

The introduction to the preceding volume (ie Norris’s Bath County book) contains a long discussion of past transcriptions of Beaufort Deed Books.

Bertie - Bell, Mary Best, Colonial Bertie County North Carolina: Abstracts of Deed Books, Windsor, NC: self-published, 1963-1968.
1.       Deed Book A, 1720-1725
2.       Deed Books B & C, 1725-1730 & 1739
3.       Deed Books D & E, 1730-1739
4.       Deed Book F, 1739-1744
5.       Deed Book G, 1744-1753
6.       Deed Book H, 1753-1757

Bell’s books were republished in the late 1970’s by Southern Historical Press – presumably without revision.

Bertie - Bradley, Stephen E, The Deeds of Bertie County, North Carolina, Keysville, VA: self-published, 1992.
1.       1757-1772
2.       1772-1785
3.       1785-1794

Bertie – Dunstan, Edythe Smith, Index for Courthouse Records of Bertie County, North Carolina, 1720-1875: Deeds, land divisions, grants, abstracts of wills and marriage bonds, [Windsor, N. C.]: self-published, 1966.

Bladen - Campbell, Wanda S, Bladen County, North Carolina: abstract of deeds, Bladen County Bicentennial Commission, 1977-1980.
1.       Deed Book 7
2.       Deed Books 1, 11, and 23
3.       Deed Books 8 and 10.

Bladen – Holcomb, Brent, Bladen County, North Carolina, abstracts of early deeds, 1738-1804, Easley, SC: Southern Historical Press, 1979. Includes full name index, but only to his pages, not the Deed Book. No place name index.
"At its formation in 1734, Bladen encompassed everything west of the present county. Even though many of Bladen’s Deeds were lost in the three court house fires, these abstracts are especially informative, with many long chains of title going back to original grants and many references to bordering Craven County, South Carolina. This book will provide many links which were formerly thought forever lost."

Cabarrus – Rouse, J K, Records of Cabarrus County, North Carolina, Kannapolis, NC: self-published, 1987.
Cabarrus - Schneider, Lois, Cabarrus County, NC Abstracts of Minutes of the Court of Pleas and Quarter Sessions, 1793-1797, and Deed Books 1, 2 & 3, 1793-1801, Troutman, NC: self-published, 1988.

Camden - Sanderlin, Ben Garrett, Relationship Deed Books: Pasquotank County 1700-1777, Camden County 1777-1828, North Carolina, self-published, [1960].

Caswell - Kendall, Katharine Kerr, Caswell County, North Carolina, Deed Books Abstracts, Easley, SC: Southern Historical Press, 1989. Contains a name index, but only to her own page number, not the Deed Book citation. No place index. Contains chart of parishes of old Caswell County. Volumes:
1.       1777-1817
2.       1817-1840.
“Deed Books A through R total 6614 pages and cover 40 years of land transfers . . . Included are over 1200 grants from the State of North Carolina . . . For a few of the early grants herein the names of chain carriers are included.”

Chatham – Laird, Marilyn Poe & Vivian Poe Jackson, Chatham County, North Carolina Deeds, Dolton, IL: self-published, [no date]. No index? Volumes:
1.       1770-1782
2.       1780-1785
3.       1783-1788

Chowan - Hofmann, Margaret M, Chowan Precinct, North Carolina, 1696 to 1723: Genealogical abstracts of Deed Books, Weldon, NC: Roanoke News Co, 1972.

Columbus - Williamson, Jason McLeod, Abstracts of Earliest Columbus County, North Carolina Deeds, Alexandria, VA: self-published, 1975-1990. Volumes:
1.       Blah
2.       1816-1829 (Deed Books C & D)
3.       1829-1840 (Deed Books E & F)
4.       1840-1846 (Deed Books G & H)
5.       1846-1850 (Deed Books I (Part 1) and J)
6.       1850-1855 (Deed Books K, L, & M partial)
7.       1856-1860

Craven – Pruitt, Albert Bruce, Abstracts of Deeds, Craven Co, NC, self-published, 2004.
1.       Deeds (1728-1761)
2.       Deed Books 2, 3, & 4 (1708-1765)
3.       Deed Books 6, 7, 8, 9 & 10 (1750-1758)
4.       Deed Books 11, 12, & 13 (1761-1766)
5.       Deed Books 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, & 19 (1766-1772)
6.       Deed Books 20, 21, 22, 23, & 24 (1772-1783)
7.       Deed Books 25, 26, 27, & 28 (1782-1788)
8.       Deed Books 29, 30, & 31 (1791-1794)
9.       ?
10.   Deed Books 35, 36, & 37 (1797-1811)
11.   Deed Books 38 & 39 (1811-1817)

Cumberland – Fields, William C, Abstracts of Deeds of Cumberland County, North Carolina, Fayetteville, N.C.: Cumberland County Genealogical Society, 1994. The first volume includes an excellent creek map of Cumberland and Moore Counties. Fully indexed. Volumes:
1.       Deed Books 1-3 (1754-1770)
2.       Deed Books 4-7 (1770-1785)

Currituck - Brayton, John Anderson, By a Line of Marked Trees: Abstracts of Currituck County, North Carolina, Deed Books, Memphis, TN: elf-published, 2000. Volumes:
1.       Deed Books 1-3
2.       Deed Books 3-4

Davie – Linn, Jo White, Davie County, North Carolina Will and Deed Abstracts: Wills 1836-1900, Deeds 1836-1850, Salisbury, NC: self-published, 1973.

Davidson - Middleton, Catherine C, Abstracts of Davidson County Deed Books I and II, self-published, 1969.

Davidson - Shoaf, Mary Jo Davis, Davidson County, North Carolina, Abstracts of Will Book 2, 1844-1868, and Deed Book 3, 1826-1828, Roanoke, VA: self-published, 1989.

Duplin – Draughon, Eleanor Daphine Smith, Duplin County, North Carolina, Abstracts of Deeds, Rose Hill, NC: Duplin County Historical Society, 1983. See also “Sampson” below.

Edgecombe - Hofmann, Margaret M, Abstracts of Deeds, Edgecombe Precinct, Edgecombe County, North Carolina, 1732 through 1758 - as found in Halifax County, North Carolina public registry Deed Books 1-2-3-4-5-6, Weldon, NC: Roanoke News Co, 1969. Includes a full name index, but only to pages in her text, not the Deed Books. No place name index. From “Note to the user of this compilation: “Granville grantees are not included in the abstracts that follow, but appear in 1749-1763 Abstracts of Granville Grantees in Halifax County, North Carolina Public Registry.

Edgecombe - Hofmann, Margaret M, 1749-1763 Abstracts of Granville Grantees in Halifax County, North Carolina Public Registry,

Edgecombe - Watson, Joseph W, Abstracts of Early Deeds of Edgecombe County, North Carolina, 1759-1772, self-published, 1966. Volumes:
1.       1759-1772
2.       1772-1788.

Franklin – Watson, Joseph W, Abstracts of the Early Deeds of Franklin County, North Carolina, 1779-1797, Rocky Mount, NC: self-published, 1984.

Gates - Taylor, Mona Armstrong, Abstracts of Deeds of Gates County, North Carolina, Harker Heights, TX: self-published, 1983. Volumes:
1.       Deed Books 6 and 7 (1803-1808)
2.       Deed Books 8 and 9 (1808-1814)
3.       Deed Book 10 (1814-1819)
4.       Deed Book 11 (1819-1824)
5.       Deed Books 12 and 13 (1824-1828)
6.       Deed Book 14 (1828-1833)
7.       Deed Books 15 and 16 (1833-1839)
8.       Deed Books 17 and 18 (1839-1844)
9.       Deed Books 19 and 20 (1844-1851)
10.   Deed Books A-5 (1776-1803)

Granville – Gwynn, Zae Hargett, Abstracts of the Early Deeds of Granville County, North Carolina 1746-1765, Durham, NC: Seeman Printery, 1974. Covers Deed Books A through G and has an index, but for names of people only, not places.

Granville – Rackley, Timothy W, Granville County North Carolina Deeds, 1763-1766, self-published, 1999. Includes a good creek map for Granville, Vance and _ Counties and 3 separate indexes for full-names, female-names and places.  Rackley writes in his introduction:
“This is the first in a series pertaining to the deeds of Granville County, North Carolina. My intent was to pick up where Zae Margett Gwynn had stopped ith her Abstracts of the Early Deeds of Granville County North Carolina 146-1765. Due to increased expectations of today’s researcher, the standard for abstracting deeds has changed. Also since approximately one third of Deed Book G pertains to Earl of Granville land grants, it was necessary to begin with Deed Book G instead of Deed Book H.”

Granville – Gwynn, Zae Hargett, Kinfolks of Granville County, North Carolina, 1765-1826, Rocky Mount, NC: self-published, 1974.

Greene - Murphy, William L Jr, Genealogical Abstracts of Greene County, NC Deeds, 1776-1860, Raleigh, NC : self-published, 1996.

Guilford – Bennett, William D, Guilford County Deed Books, Raleigh, NC: self-published, 1990. Volumes:
1.       Deed Book 1
2.       Deed Book 2
From page xiii of Volume 1:
“Because the microfilm copy of Deed Book 1 is almost illegible, these abstracts were prepared from the originals in the Register of Deeds’ Office at the courthouse in Geernsboro, North Carolina . . .
“Your orator further sheweth, that during the late war, to wit, abut the months of March or February 1781, the British Army, among the many Barbarous and wanton ravages commited in this County, destroyed the greatest parts of the records of said Court of Pleas and Quarter Sessions.’ Thus pleaded James McCollom in his suit against his brother concerning a lot will. [Salisbury Court Equity Enrolling Docket, p. 31] On 23 September 1790, John McKibbons of Mcklenburg County testified, “During the ravages of the late war the records of the County of Guilford were in a great measure utterly destroyed by the enemy and the Books or Dockets containing the records relating to the trial herein before charged among others utterly lost and destroyed.” [Salisbury District Superior Court Enrolling Docket, p. 49.] Earlier, John Hamilton had testified, ‘The records of the sair trials and the returns were destroyed with a large part of the records of the said Court of the County of Guilford by a detachment of the British Army during the late war.” [Salisbury District Superior Court Enrolling Docket, p. 53.]”

The introduction of Volume 2 indicates that the microfilming of Deed Book 2 was much better. Therefore it is primarily transcribed from that source. Gilford County Deed Book 2 is mostly made up of recordations of state land grants.

Guilford – Pruitt, Albert Bruce, Abstracts of Deeds, Guilford Co, NC, self-published, 2008. Volumes:
1.       Deed Books 3, 4, 5, & 6 (1784-1799)
2.       Deed Books 7, 8, & 9 (1799-1809)
3.       Deed Books 10, 11, 12, & 13 (1809-1819)
4.       Deed Books 14, 15, & 16 (1819-1826)
5.       Deed Books 17 & 18 (1824-1833)
6.       Deed Books 19, 20, & 21 (1825-1836)
7.       Deed Books 22, 23, & 24 (1835-1839)
8.       Deed Books 25 & 26 (1839-1842)
9.       Deed Books 27, 28, & 29 (1842-1847)
10.   Deed Books 30 & 31 (1845-1850)
11.   Deed Books 32 & 33 (1849-1857)
12.   Deed Books 34-36 (1852-1860)

Halifax - Hofmann, Margaret M, Abstracts of Granville grantees, Halifax County, North Carolina, public registry, 1749-1763.

Haywood - Eddleman, Bill, Abstracts of Haywood County, North Carolina Deeds, Greenville, S.C.: Southern Historical Press, 2005. Covers Haywood Co Deed Books A-C (1809-1838).

Iredell - Coulter, Shirley, Iredell County North Carolina Deed Abstracts, Statesville, NC: Abstract Publishers, 1977. Volumes:
1.       Deed Books A & B (1788-1797)
2.       Deed Books C & D (1797-1802)

Johnston – Haun, Weynette Parks, Johnston County, North Carolina, Abstracts of Deed Books, Durham, NC: self-published, 1980-2006. Volumes:
1.       Deed Books A-1, B-1, Transcript-1, D, D-1 (1759-1771)
2.       Deed Books E-1, Transcripts 2 & 3 (F-1, N-1, P-1, Q-1, R-1) (1764-1791)
3.       Deed Books H-1, I-1, K, L-1 (1771-1782)
4.       Deed Books M-1, O-1, S-1, T-1 (1779-1794)
5.       Deed Books U-1, V-1, W-1, X-1 (1795-1799)
6.       Deed Books Y-1, Z-1, A-2, B-2 (1799-1803)
7.       Deed Books C-2, D-2, E-2 (1783-1808).
Johnston - Ross, Elizabeth E & Zelda B. Wood, Kinfolks of Johnston County: Abstracts of deeds, Clayton, NC: self-published, [1993].
Lincoln - Pruitt, Albert Bruce, Abstracts of Lincoln Co, NC : land entries 1780 & 1795-1797 : land processions, 1789-1834 : & Lincolnton, NC deeds, 1785-1868, self-published, 1988.
Lincoln - Pruitt, Albert Bruce, Abstracts of Deeds, Lincoln Co, NC, 1988-
1.       Deed Books 3, 4, & 16 (1786-1793)
2.       Deed Books 17, 18, & 19 (1793-1800)
3.       Deed Books 20, 21, & 22 (1800-1805)
4.       Deed Books 23, 24, & 25 (1804-1813)
5.       Deed Books 26 & 27 (1813-1817)
6.       Deed Books 28, 29, & 30 (1817-1824)
7.       Deed Books 31 & 32 (1824-1828)
8.       Deed Books 33 & 34 (1828-1833)
9.       Deed Books 35 & 36 (1833-1837)
10.   Deed Books 37 & 38 (1837-1843)
11.   Deed Books 39 & 40 (1841-1846)
12.   Deed Books 41 & 42 (1843-1856)
13.   Deed Books 43 & 44 (1856-1863)
14.   Deed Books 45, 46, & 47 (1863-1876)
15.   Deed Books 48 & 49 (1877-1878)
16.   Deed Books 50 & 51 (1878-1880)
17.   Cumulative Index to People in Lincoln Co Deed Books (1769-1881)
18.   Cumulative Index to Places in Lincoln Co Deed Books (1769-1881)
Martin - Martin County, North Carolina Abstracts of Deeds, Williamston, N.C.: The Society, 1993. Volumes:
1.       Deed Book A (1774-1787)
2.       Deed Books B & C (1787-1801)
Mecklenberg – Holcomb, Brent, Mecklenburg County, North Carolina Deed Abstracts, 1763-1779, Easley, SC: Southern Historical Press, 1979. An earlier version was self-published in 1976?
Mecklenberg - Ferguson, Herman W, Genealogical Deed Abstracts: Mecklenburg County, North Carolina, Rocky Mount, NC: self-published, 1990-2007. I’m not sure whether there were volumes before Deed Book 10 or not. Perhaps this series commences at the end of Holcomb’s Mecklenberg abstracts (above). Volumes:
3.       Deed Books 10-14
4.       Deed Books 15-23
5.       Deed Books 24-28 & Books 1-3, second series
Moore - Wicker, Rassie E, Miscellaneous ancient records of Moore County, NC, Moore County Historical Association, [1971?] Includes an excellent folding map. Covers Cumberland grants and deeds 1754-1784, Census of Moore County 1850, Census of Moore County 1790.
Nash – Rackley, Timothy Wiley, Nash County, North Carolina Deeds, Kernersville, NC: self-published, 1996.
1.       1778-1804
2.       1782-1791
3.       1791-1813
4.       1794-1800
5.       1800-1818.
Nash – Watson, Joseph W, Estate Records in the Deed Books of Nash County, North Carolina, 1781-1897, Rocky Mount, NC: self-published, 1982.
Nash – Watson, Joseph W, Kinfolks of Nash County, North Carolina, 1778-1854, Rocky Mount, NC: self-published, 1979. Abstracts of parts of the first 20 Deed Books of Nash County.
Nash – Watson, Joseph W, Abstracts of Early Deeds of Nash County, North Carolina: Books 1-6, Fort Worth, TX: Arrow Printing, 1966.
Nash – Whitley, Edythe Johns Rucker, Notes from Deeds in Nash County, North Carolina, 1938.
New Hanover - Pruitt, Albert Bruce, 1943-, Abstracts of Deeds, New Hanover Co, NC, self-published, 2003-2008.
1.       Deed Books A & B (1735-1744)
2.       Deed Books C, D, & E (1744-1773)
3.       Deed Books F, G, & H (1754-1788)
4.       Deed Books I & K (1789-1793)
5.       Deed Books L & M (1794-1805)
6.       Deed Books N & O (1805-1813)
7.       Deed Books P & Q (1813-1820)
8.       Deed Books R & S (1820-1826)
9.       Deed Books T & U (1828-1833)
10.   Deed Books V & W (1833-1838)
11.   Deed Books X & Y (1837-1841)
12.   Deed Books Z & AA (1841-1845)
New Hanover - Graves, Mae Blake, New Hanover County Abstracts of Deeds, Wilmington, NC: self-published, 1981. This is labeled Volume 1, but apparently Graves did not produce any later volumes. Includes a full-name index and a partial place name index, but both indices are to pages in her book, rather than the Deed Book. From the Foreword:
“Many of the old records in New Hanover County have been lost to courthouse fires. Old Deed Book A and old Deed Book B have been combined to form our present day Deed Book AB, and this is our earliest Deed Book.”
New Hanover - McKoy, Elizabeth Francenia, Early New Hanover County Records, Wilmington, NC: self-published, 1973.
Northampton - Hofmann, Margaret M, Abstracts of Deeds, Northampton County, North Carolina, 1741-1759: Public registry, Deed Book one and Deed Book two, Weldon, N.C.: Roanoke News Co, [1968?].
Northampton - Bradley, Stephen E, The Deeds of Northampton County, North Carolina, Keysville, Va.: S.E. Bradley, 1990. Volumes:
1.       1759-1774
2.       1774-1787.
Onslow - Abstracts of the Records of Onslow County, North Carolina, 1734-1850. This item has no author, publishing information or date.
Orange - Bennett, William Daub, Orange County Records, Raleigh, NC: self-published, 1987. Volumes:
1.       Granville Proprietary Land Office, abstracts of loose papers
2.       Deed Books 1 & 2
3.       Deed Book 3
4.       Deed Book 4
5.       Granville Proprietary Land Office, deeds & surveys, 1752-1760
6.       Granville Proprietary Land Office, deeds & surveys, 1761-1763
7.       Granville Proprietary Land Office, miscellaneous records
8.       Deed Book 5
9.       State Land Grants 1-500
10.   State Land Grants 501-1000
11.   Deed Books 6 & 7
12.   Deed Books 8 & 9
13.   Inventories & accounts of sales 1758-1785
14.   Deed Books 10 & 11
15.   Deed Book 12, 1805-1807
16.   Inventories and accounts of sales, 1800-1808
17.   Deed Book 13
18.   Deed Book 14
19.   Deed Books 15 & 16.
Pasquotank - Brayton, John Anderson, Abstracts of Pasquotank County, North Carolina Deeds 1750-1770, Baltimore, MD: Clearfield Co, 2009.
Pasquotank - Bjorkman, Gwen Boyer, Pasquotank County, North Carolina, record of deeds, 1700-1751, Bowie, MD: Heritage Books, 1990.
Pasquotank - Sanderlin, Ben Garrett, Relationship Deed Books: Pasquotank County 1700-1777, Camden County 1777-1828, North Carolina, self-published, [1960].
Perquimans - Winslow, Ellen Goode Rawlings, History of Perquimans County as Compiled from Records Found There and Elsewhere: Abstracts of deeds from 1681 through the revolution, Raleigh: Edwards & Broughton Co, 1931.
Perquimans – Haun, Weynette Parks, Perquimans County, North Carolina Deed Abstracts, 1681-1729, Durham, NC: W P Haun, 1983.
Person - Kendall, Katharine Kerr, Person County, North Carolina Deed Books, 1792-1825, Baltimore, MD: Clearfield Co, 1993. From page iii: “Books A through G total 2899 pages covering 33 years of land transfers, some grants from State of North Carolina, deeds of slaces and other personal property, powers of attorney, division of land to inheritors, and migration of inhabitants.”
Pitt – Ellison, Judith DuPree, Index and Abstracts of Deeds of Record of Pitt County, North Carolina, Miami Beach, FL: Atlantic Print & Lith, 1968.
Randolph – Grigg, Barbara Newsom, Randolph County North Carolina Deed Abstracts, Books 1 through 5, 1779 -1794. Contains an index of last names and place names, but only to pages in her own text, not the Deed Book. From page 1:
“Due to the Revolutionary War, a small fire and loss by Vermin, few land transfers appear on record for the first two years [of Randolph County’s existence]. The Court Minutes for this period have survived and land transfers from the first Minute book - June 1779 to June 1782 are included. A total of 24. There are however, many earlier deeds that were registered at later dates.”
Robeson - Williamson, Jason McLeod, Robeson County, North Carolina, Deed Abstracts, Alexandria, VA.: self-published, 1982-1986. Volumes:
1.       1787-1793 (Deed Books A, B & C)
2.       1793-1797 (Deed Books D, E & F)
3.       1797-1800 (Deed Books G, H, & I)
Rockingham – Webster, Irene B, Rockingham County, North Carolina deed abstracts, 1785-1800, Madison, NC: self-published, [1973.]
Rockingham – Redman, Inez, Revised Index to Rockingham Co, NC Deeds 1785-1800, Birmingham, MI: self-published, 1983.
Rockingham Webster, Irene B, Rockingham County, North Carolina Deed Abstracts, 1785-1800, Madison, NC: self-published, [1973].
Rowan – Linn, Jo White & Edith Montcalm Clark, Rowan County, North Carolina Deed Abstracts, Salisbury, NC: self-published, 1972. Volumes:
1.       1753-1762; Deed Books 1-4
2.       1762-1772; Deed Books 5, 6, 7
3.       Evidently the third volume was consolidated with the prior two and published in 1983 as Abstracts of the Deeds of Rowan County, North Carolina, 1753-1785, vols. 1-10, by “Mrs. Stahle Linn, Jr” – presumably aka Jo White Linn.
Rowan - Kluttz, James W, Abstracts of Deed Books of Rowan County, North Carolina, Landis, NC: self-published, 1996-. Clearly Mr Kluttz, a Civil Engineer who probably surveyed much of Rowan Co, picked up where Jo White Linn left off:
1.       Deed Books 11-14. 1786-1797 –
2.       Deed Books 15-19. 1797-1807 –
3.       Deed Books 20-24. 1807-1818 –
4.       Deed Books 25-29. 1818-1828 –
5.       Deed Books 30-34, 1828-1840.
Mr. Kluttz also produced a land grant map for all of Rowan County at 1:24,000 scale in 1973. The only copy I know of is in the North Carolina Room at the Rowan County Public Library – on 6 large sheets.
Rutherford – Davis, Caroline Heath, Rutherford County, North Carolina Abstracts of Deeds, 1773-1795, Rutherfordton, NC: self-published, 1973.
Rutherford – Green, John Plath, Abstracts of Deeds, Rutherford County, North Carolina, volumes A-D, Dallas: Family Heritage Pub, [1968]
Sampson/Duplin - Peterson, Max R, Abstracts Sampson-Duplin Deeds, Buies Creek, NC: self-published, 1983-6. “Including all deeds, wills, inventories of estate, accounts of sales, powers of attorney, bills of sale, etc, found in the first three volumes of the old Duplin County Deed Books.” Volumes:
1.       Duplin Deed Books 1-3 (1750 - 1774)
2.       Duplin Deed Books 4-6 (1762 - 1779)
3.       Duplin Deed Books 7-9 (1780 – 1793)
4.       Sampson County Deed Books 10-12 (1794 - 1804)
Stokes – Hallecook, Deborah J, Stokes County, North Carolina, Deed Abstracts, Peoria, AZ: self-published.
Surry – Snow, Carol Leonard, Surry County, North Carolina Deed Abstracts, Toast, NC: C & L Historical Publ, 1995.
1.       Deed Books G-H (1795-1800)
2.       Deed Book I (1800-1803)
3.       Deed Books K-L (1803-1808)
Surry - Absher, Mrs. W O, Surry County, North Carolina Abstracts Deed Books A, B, and C (1770-1788), Easley, S.C.: Southern Historical Press, 1981.
Tryon – Holcomb, Brent, Deed Abstracts of Tryon, Lincoln & Rutherford Counties, North Carolina, 1769-1786; Tryon County Wills & Estates, Easley, SC: Southern Historical Press, 1977.
Wake – Watson, Joseph W, Abstracts of the Early Deeds of Wake County, North Carolina 1785-1802, Rocky Mount, NC: self-published, 1978.
Warren - Kerr, Mary Hinton, Warren County, North Carolina Records (3 vols), Warrenton, N.C. 1967. Volumes:
1.       Abstracted records of colonial Bute County, N.C., 1764-1779 and Bute County marriages
2.       Abstracts of Deed Book A, 1764-1766: deeds of colonial Bute County, N.C. –
a.       Volume 2 supplement: Abstracts of Bute Co., N.C., deeds registered in Warren Co. Deed Books 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, & 7, 1766-1779
3.       Abstracts of will books, 1779-1814
Wayne - Ham, Tania S, Wayne County, North Carolina (2 vols), Jacksonville, Fla.: T.S. Ham, 1973-1974.
1.       Deed Books 1 & 2, 1780-1785
2.       Deed Book 3, 1785-1787

Wayne – Watson, Joseph W, Abstracts of the Early Deeds of Wayne County, North Carolina, 1780-1793, Rocky Mount, NC: self-published, 1981.

Yancey - Williams, Sally, Index and Abstract of Deeds of Yancey Co, NC, which included portions of Old Buncombe & Old Burke Counties, North Highlands, CA: self-published, 1985.

Other published works containing historical land ownership and land grant information for North Carolina:

Davie - Hughes, Fred, Davie (the Forks of the Yadkin) County, North Carolina: historical documentation, Jamestown, NC: Custom House, 1977. 
Guilford - Hughes, Fred, Guilford County, North Carolina: historical documentation, Jamestown, NC: Custom House, 1980. 
Montgomery - Hughes, Fred, Montgomery County, North Carolina, historical documentation, Jamestown, NC: Custom House, 1976. 
Randolph - Hughes, Fred, Randolph County, North Carolina: historical documentation, Jamestown, NC: Custom House, [1976]. 
Rockingham - Hughes, Fred, Rockingham County, North Carolina: historical documentation, Jamestown, NC: Custom House, [1979]. 
Stokes - Hughes, Fred, Stokes County, North Carolina: historical documentation, Jamestown, NC: Custom House, 1977. 
Surry - Hughes, Fred, Surry County, North Carolina: historical documentation, Jamestown, NC: Custom House, 1977. 
Yadkin - Hughes, Fred, Yadkin County, North Carolina: historical documentation, Jamestown, NC: Custom House, [1976].