About James Colleton, Colonial Governor of South Carolina
James Colleton (d. c. 1706) was a governor of the English proprietary Province of Carolina from 1686 to 1690. Son of Sir John Colleton, one of the colony's founders, he took over some of the family's landholdings in Barbados before being appointed governor by the colony's proprietors. Upon his arrival in the colony he put a stop to a planned expedition against Spanish St. Augustine, organized in retaliation for an earlier attack against Charles Town. Since England and Spain were then at peace, the proprietors approved his action, much to the annoyance of the local leaders. He furthered angered the colonists by maintaining the government according the colony's Fundamental Constitutions in the face of popular opposition. By 1690 Colleton and the provincial assembly were at loggerheads, and Colleton attempted to rule without the assembly. This resulted in open resistance to his rule, prompting him to declare martial law, although he quickly retracted this when he could not even control the militia. He was turned out of office by the arrival in 1690 of Seth Sothel, one of the proprietors.