Charles Eden Dies Near the Town Named in His Honor

An image of Charles Eden’s tomb from the N.C. Museum of History

On March 26, 1722, Governor Charles Eden died. Shortly after Eden’s death, the town nearest his home, known as “the Town on Queen Anne’s Creek”, was renamed Edenton in his honor.

Eden was governor of North Carolina during a period of progressive changes.  Although there are few surviving records, he is generally credited with the improvements made during his administration.  Eden’s early life is even more of a mystery than his colonial career.  There are no records of his activities, public or private, prior to his 1713 appointment   to become the governor of North Carolina.

An assembly that Eden called in 1715 passed various far reaching governmental reforms.  The contemporary legal code was revised, taking aim at widespread disturbances that occurred during previous administrations.  With the objective of enhancing trade, immigration and communication, several transportation issues were addressed, including plans to improve existing roads, build new roads and establish shipping channels.  Though a a leader in his church and a devout Anglican, Eden was tolerant of religious diversity and ensured that the colony’s laws reflected that.

In 1889 Eden’s remains and gravestone were moved to St. Paul’s Churchyard in Edenton.

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