Edward Hyde, Colonial Governor of North Carolina

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Edward Hyde

Birthdate: (45)
Death: September 8, 1712 (45) (yellow fever)
Immediate Family:

Son of Robert Hyde, of Norbury and Hyde and Felicia Hyde
Husband of Catherine Rigby
Father of Anne Clarke

Managed by: Private User
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About Edward Hyde, Colonial Governor of North Carolina


Edward Hyde (1667 – 8 September 1712), was the first colonial governor of the separate colony of North Carolina from 1711 until his death in 1712. He governed during a time of great turmoil in the colony, including a revolt by the former governor known as Cary's Rebellion and a Native American uprising called the Tuscarora War.

Early life and family

Hyde was born in 1667 to a prominent family in England and was a cousin of Queen Anne. He was a son of Robert Hyde and his wife Felicia Snyed of Cheshire in England. Hyde, along with his sisters, Anne and Penelope, was raised by his grandmother, since his parents died when he was only three. He entered Oxford University in 1683, but did not complete a degree. In 1692, he married Catherine Rigby, whose family were prominent in Cheshire. Virginian William Byrd referred to her in his diary as "an abundance of life".

Career in public life

In 1702 Hyde was appointed by Queen Anne as Jamaica’s provost marshal. Hyde served in that position without ever travelling to the Caribbean, but found it not lucrative.

Arriving in North Carolina

In 1710, Hyde was appointed Deputy Governor for the Colony of Carolina by the Lords Proprietors of the Carolina colony. Though the territory between the Virginia border and the Cape Fear River was officially recognized as North Carolina as early as 1689, that territory and all of what would become South Carolina, was known as the Province of Carolina with the Governor maintaining his residence at Charleston; a deputy governor was appointed for the Northern part of the province.

When he arrived in Virginia, Hyde discovered that Governor Edward Tynte who had been appointed Governor of the Carolina Colony in 1708, and from whom he was to receive his commission, had died. Hyde proceeded to North Carolina without his commission where he found dissension about to erupt in violence.

Cary's Rebellion


Thomas Cary was appointed Deputy Governor of Carolina, with responsibility for North Carolina. While he was in the southern portion of the Colony in 1706 - 1708, William Glover as President of the Council was acting Deputy Governor. Meanwhile a petition had been presented to the Lords Proprietors in London by disgruntled Carolina settlers and Cary was ordered removed as Deputy Governor and the Council elected Glover as Deputy Governor.

There had long been a large population of Quakers in North Carolina and there was growing friction between the Quakers and adherents of the Church of England who wished to see it established as the official church of the colony by law. Quakers were unable, due to their beliefs, to swear oaths required of all officials on the coronation of Queen Anne.

Cary returned to the region and disputed Glover's right to office claiming support from the Quakers. From 1708 until Hyde's arrival in 1710 there was violence and a disputed Assembly election. Ultimately, Hyde's authority was established when Virginia Governor Alexander Spottswood sent a militia into Carolina. A company of royal marines from the guardships in the Chesapeake Bay arrived to aid Hyde in July 1711. Cary's forces laid down their arms and submitted to Governor Hyde.

Tuscarora War



Hyde died of yellow fever on September 8, 1712 in Bertie County, North Carolina.


Hyde County, North Carolina was named for Governor Hyde. Hyde and Anne Rigby had a number of children but only one daughter, Anne Hyde survived them. She married George Clarke who served as acting Governor of New York.

According to Annals of Hyde and District By Thomas Middleton, "... Edward Hyde the only son of the last named (Robert Hyde) sold the Norbury and other estates and then went to America having been appointed Governor of North Carolina where he is supposed to have died He married and had two sons and two daughters Anne and Penelope Both the sons died unmarried and thus the direct male line of the Hydes terminated..."

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Edward Hyde, Colonial Governor of North Carolina's Timeline

Age 26
September 8, 1712
Age 45