The Chowanoke Indians -- By Duvonya Chavis

The territory that was occupied by the Chowanoke Indians in Northeastern North
Carolina was a desirable area to the English explorers. Not only was the land fertile
and promising of bountiful harvests, the Chowanoke were known to be hospitable to
these explorers. In 1663, King Charles II granted a massive amount of land to eight
Englishmen who became the Lord Proprietors of Carolina. This grant included land in
North and South Carolina and was established by the Charter of Carolina of 1663. The
Charter conferred legislative and governing powers in the Carolina province to these
eight men who, in turn, began to offer free land grants in order to attract and encourage
English settlement. A settlement along the Chowan River had already been established
two decades earlier by colonists from Virginia and continued to be attractive with these
land grants by the Proprietors. In 1663, the same year of the Charter, the Chowanoke
Indians also entered into a treaty with the English. In this treaty they agreed to submit
“themselves to the Crown of England under the Dominion of the Lords Proprietors.”
The treaty lasted for 12 years but was broken when war broke out in 1675 between the
Chowanoke and the English.


Duvonya, a Chowanoke Indian descendant, is President of Roanoke-
Chowan Native American Association, a non-profit organization
whose mission is to help American Indians in Northeastern NC and
Southeastern VA. She currently sits on the council of the Chowanoke
Tribe. In partnership with another Chowanoke descendant, she is
currently developing Chowanoke Reservation for tribal descendants
to gather and hold cultural events.

To read more of her articles check out back issues of the Albemarle
Tradewinds Magazine online Click Here
The Chowanoke Indians -- By Duvonya Chavis The Chowanoke Indians  -- By Duvonya Chavis Reviewed by kensunm on 9:00:00 PM Rating: 5

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