Georgia | Gilliams of Virginia Gilliams of Georgia

The GILLIAMs of Georgia
Updated March 13, 2016

Background
On June 9, 1732, King George II granted a charter to Oglethorpe and a group of 20 friends, organized as trustees, to establish a colony named for the king. Oglethorpe's concern for the poverty and unemployment in England motivated him to help relieve the poor from the harsh conditions found in debtors' prisons. It was also hoped that founding a new colony would increase trade and wealth and provide a buffer for South Carolina against attack by the Spanish, the French and the Indians

The Royal Charter for the colony of Georgia was officially certified on June 9, 1732. 114 passengers left Gravesend, England on the Anne, a 200-ton frigate commanded by Captain John Thomas. The ship was crowded, but the voyage went smoothly. Two sickly children died on the trip, yet in general the company stayed healthy. A baby, Georgius Warren was christened on November 12 and the passengers celebrated Oglethorpes birthday with a special dinner at Christmas. The company finally sighted Charles Town, South Carolina on January 13, 1733.

The Georgia settlers left South Carolina in a group of small boats on January 30 and landed at Yamacraw Bluff, 17 miles up the Savannah River. Oglethorpes first official act was to kneel with the company to offer thanksgiving and prayer to God.

Four large tents were erected that night, but soon Oglethorpe was busy laying out the land lots for Savannah. The first child in the colony, Georgia Close, was born on March 17, but she died ten months later. Fortifications and a few houses were erected by summer, but life was very hard for the first year. Pure water was lacking, illness spread in the muggy climate and many died.

Fortunately, the colony received some assistance from South Carolina and help from the Yamacraw Indians, whose old chief Tomo-chi-chi proved to be a lasting friend to Oglethorpe.

As more colonists arrived, the Trustees hoped that Georgia could produce silk, wine and other semitropical goods. Nearly 500 pounds of raw silk - the most gathered in one year under the Trustees—were sent to England in 1751, but the trade in silk never succeeded as the Trustees hoped. Sitting in London, the Trustees did not have a realistic view of life in Georgia. Many colonists came from the cities and did not understand farming. It was harder to grow food than the Trustees expected. While there were good harvests in 1738 and 1739, there were many years when food had to be imported. Though the Trustees were trying to protect the settlers when they prohibited rum and slaves, many of the colonists disliked these rules. After Parliament refused the Trustees request for funds in 1751, the Trustees disbanded. The colony came under the Kings control and the first Royal Governor, Captain John Reynolds, arrived in Savannah on October 29, 1754.


Records on this page include state wide records such as Census and Tax records.



For information on specific counties:


Clarke County, GA
Various records relating to Gilliams that settled in Clarke County, GA


Greene County, GA
Various records relating to Gilliams that settled in Clarke County, GA


Hancock County, GA
Various records relating to Gilliams that settled in Clarke County, GA


Jackson County, GA
Various records relating to Gilliams that settled in Clarke County, GA


Jefferson County, GA
Various records relating to Gilliams that settled in Clarke County, GA


Lincoln County, GA
Various records relating to Gilliams that settled in Clarke County, GA


Morgan County, GA
Various records relating to Gilliams that settled in Clarke County, GA


Oglethorpe County, GA
Various records relating to Gilliams that settled in Clarke County, GA


Wilkes County, GA
Various records relating to Gilliams that settled in Clarke County, GA


Sources