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George Carteret

From Academic Kids

Sir George Carteret (1610 - 1680), also known as George de Carteret, was an royalist statesman in Jersey and England, who served in the Clarendon Ministry as Treasurer of the Navy. He was also one of the original proprietors of the Carolina colony.

He was born in the island of Jersey in 1599. Entering the navy at an early age, he attained a high reputation as a naval officer, and in 1626 was appointed by Charles I as Joint Governor of the island of Jersey. He was much esteemed by all parties. In 1640 he was appointed Comptroller of the Navy, and May, 1645, was created a Baronet.

On the commencement of the Civil War he retired from the navy, and withdrew with his family to Jersey, but subsequently returned to aid the projects of the royalists. He afterwards, on the ruin of the royal cause, afforded an asylum to the Prince of Wales and other refugees of distinction within his government of Jersey where he served as Bailiff 1643-1651, and defended the island against the Parliamentarians, Elizabeth Castle being the last fortress that lowered the royal banner.

George Carteret also had Charles proclaimed King in Saint Helier on 17 February 1649 after the execution of his father, Charles I. Charles II never forgot this gesture whereby Jersey became the first of his realms to recognise his claim to the throne.

At the Restoration, having shared Charles IIís banishment, Sir George formed one of the immediate train of the restored monarch on his triumphant entry into London. The next day Carteret was sworn into the Privy Council, appointed Vice Chamberlain, and constituted Treasurer of the Navy.

In 1669 he was expelled from the House of Commons to which he had been elected in 1661 to represent Portsmouth, for misconduct as Vice Chamberlain, being accused of embezzlement (see Andrew Marvell's Letters, pp. 125, 126). In 1673 he was appointed one of the Lords of the Admiralty, and continued in the public service until his death 14 January 1679.

The fidelity with which Carteret, like Berkeley, had clung to the royal cause, gave him also great influence at court. He had, at an early date, taken a warm interest in the colonization of America. With John Berkeley, 1st Baron Berkeley of Stratton, he became one of the proprietors of the Province of Carolina, prior to their becoming jointly interested in New Jersey.


Preceded by:
Sir William Russell
Treasurer of the Navy
1660–1667
Succeeded by:
The Earl of Anglesey

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References

  • New Jersey Archives, First Series. Newark, NJ, 1880-1893., Volume 1, page 25.
  • Whitehead, William Adee, East Jersey under the proprietary governments. New York, New-Jersey historical society, 1846, page 104.
  • O'Callaghan, ed., Documents relating to the Colonial history of the State of New York, 1849 - 1851. Volume 2, page 410.
  • Marvell, Andrew, The poems and letters of Andrew Marvell; edited by H. M. Margoliouth. 3d ed. rev. by Pierre Legouis with the collaboration of E. E. Duncan-Jones. Oxford, Clarendon Press, 1971.
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