The Genesis of Georgia
"DINED with brother Percival, and in the evening met as usual the Trustees of the Georgia Colony, where Mr. Oglethorpe brought us the charter, which was signed the 9th inst., but did not pass all the offices till this week."1 Thus wrote John, Lord Viscount Percival in his Diary on June 29, 1732. This Charter is the first great landmark in the constitutional history of Georgia; hence the conditions under which it was granted are of fundamental importance to the present study.
The two decades prior to 1732 witnessed half a dozen attempts at setting up new English colonies in America. Many of them contained much in common with the later project of James Edward Oglethorpe which culminated in establishing the Colony of Georgia. In 1717 Captain Thomas Coram, best remembered today as the founder of the Foundling Hospital, presented a proposal to the British Government on behalf of himself, the Marquis de Wignancourt, and other French gentlemen for erecting a colony between Nova Scotia and Maine to be called the "Royall Province of Georgia." 2 His petition set forth the supply of naval stores as the chief objective of the new colony. This same objec-____________________