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This article is from the Dictionary of North Carolina Biography, 6 volumes, edited by William S. Powell. Copyright ©1979-1996 by the University of North Carolina Press. Used by permission of the publisher. For personal use and not for further distribution. Please submit permission requests for other use directly to the publisher.

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Hunt, John

by Mattie Erma E. Parker, 1988

Ca. 1644–1710

John Hunt, Council member and justice, was in the North Carolina colony by 1664. He lived for about a year in the home of George Catchmaid in Perquimans Precinct, but later settled in Pasquotank Precinct.

Hunt was a Quaker and by June 1677 belonged to the Pasquotank Monthly Meeting. In September 1679 he joined other Quakers in a petition to the Lords Proprietors protesting the disturbances known as Culpeper's Rebellion and the conditions following. Although he took no active part in those disturbances, Hunt appears to have sympathized with the faction supporting Thomas Miller, the acting governor.

By 3 May 1684 Hunt had become a member of the Council, a position that he also held in 1687 and 1689. He may have been on the Council in the intervening years, for which the names of Council members are not known.

From April 1685 through December 1687, Hunt was a justice of the County Court of Albemarle. In 1694, 1697, and probably the intervening years, he was a justice of the Pasquotank Precinct Court, of which few records have survived. In November 1697 he was commissioned justice of the General Court, on which he took his seat the following March. He does not appear to have held public office after October 1698, when his term on the General Court expired.

In private life Hunt was a mariner and a merchant-planter. He bore the title "captain," reflecting his rank as mariner. As early as 1680 he was part owner of a vessel engaged in trade with New England. His landholdings, which lay in Pasquotank, comprised at least 1,300 acres. The plantation on which he lived was on Little River. On occasion he appeared in court as attorney, usually representing nonresident clients.

Hunt was married twice, first before June 1677 to Frances Manners, who was the widow of Peregreen Manners and the mother of a daughter, Jane Manners, who married Caleb Bundy. His second wife, Elizabeth, was the widow of one Hatch and the mother of a son, Anthony Hatch. Elizabeth seems to have been related, perhaps as sister, to James Tooke. Apparently Hunt had only one child of his own, a daughter named Elizabeth, who married one Evans.

Hunt died between 7 Apr. 1710, when he made his will, and 26 August, when the will was probated. He bequeathed his estate to his wife and his three grandchildren: Elizabeth Evans, John Hunt Evans, and Bartholomew Evans.


Albemarle Book of Warrants and Surveys, 1681–1706, Colonial Court Records (Box CCR 192), Folders on House of Burgesses and Appointments and Commissions, Council Minutes, Wills, Inventories, 1677–1701, Wills of John Hunt and Arthur Workman (North Carolina State Archives, Raleigh).

J. Bryan Grimes, ed., Abstract of North Carolina Wills (1910).

J. R. B. Hathaway, ed., North Carolina Historical and Genealogical Register, 3 vols. (1900–1903).

William Wade Hinshaw, comp., Encyclopedia of American Quaker Genealogy, vol. 1 (1936–50).

Mattie Erma E. Parker, ed., North Carolina Higher-Court Records, 1670–1696 and 1697–1701 (1968, 1971).

William S. Price, Jr., ed., North Carolina Higher-Court Records, 1702–1708 (1974).

William L. Saunders, ed., Colonial Records of North Carolina, vol. 1 (1886).