William Penn Grants One of the Earliest Plots of Land in Pennsylvania to a Persecuted Quaker

John Edge’s home on this plot of land was later used as a Quaker meeting house for years

King Charles II owed William Penn £16,000, money which Penn’s late father Admiral Sir William Penn had lent him. Penn was an outspoken member of the Society of Friends (Quakers), and seeking a haven in the New World for persecuted Friends, Penn asked the King, instead of a cash payment, to grant...

Read More

William Penn Grants One of the Earliest Plots of Land in Pennsylvania to a Persecuted Quaker

John Edge’s home on this plot of land was later used as a Quaker meeting house for years

King Charles II owed William Penn £16,000, money which Penn’s late father Admiral Sir William Penn had lent him. Penn was an outspoken member of the Society of Friends (Quakers), and seeking a haven in the New World for persecuted Friends, Penn asked the King, instead of a cash payment, to grant him land in the territory between Lord Baltimore’s province of Maryland and the Duke of York’s province of New York. The King was delighted not to have to come up with the cash, and with the Duke’s support Penn’s petition was granted. The King signed the Charter of Pennsylvania on March 4, 1681, and it was officially proclaimed on April 2. The King named the new colony in honor of William Penn’s father. Penn then set about finding people to help him populate these areas, and he did so by selling tracts of land. By July 1681, Penn announced his plan of land distribution, and his first land sale followed.

John Edge was born December 20, 1648 in Little Barrow, Cheshire, England. Edge became an early follower of the Quaker faith and moved to Middlesex County just west of London. In 1680 he was cited for not attending the Church of England for some thirteen months. Shortly thereafter he was imprisoned at the jail at Newgate for ten weeks. Edge took up the invitation of Penn to come join his colony in America and be free of religious persecution. He purchased 125 acres of lands from Penn by deed on March 21, 1682, which was just a few months after grants of lands commenced.

Edge did not go to Pennsylvania until 1685, when he and his family sailed to Pennsylvania and settled in the Quaker settlement at Nether Providence in Chester County, just south of Philadelphia. His home was used as a Quaker meeting hall in the 1695 to 1698 time period.

Document signed, London, March 21, 1681, but clearly ought to read 1682, being an original indenture for a plot of land in Pennsylvania, one of the first grants Penn signed. It reads, in small part, “…. the said William Penn for and in consideration of the summe of five shillings of lawful money of England to him in hand paid by the same John Edge the receipt whereof he doth hereby acknowledge… hath bargained and sold and by these presents doth bargain and sell until the said John Edge the full just proportion and quantity of one hundred and twenty five acres of land…” This document is a larger format document than one often sees, and much earlier as well.

 

Frame, Display, Preserve

Each frame is custom constructed, using only proper museum archival materials. This includes:The finest frames, tailored to match the document you have chosen. These can period style, antiqued, gilded, wood, etc. Fabric mats, including silk and satin, as well as museum mat board with hand painted bevels. Attachment of the document to the matting to ensure its protection. This "hinging" is done according to archival standards. Protective "glass," or Tru Vue Optium Acrylic glazing, which is shatter resistant, 99% UV protective, and anti-reflective. You benefit from our decades of experience in designing and creating beautiful, compelling, and protective framed historical documents.

Learn more about our Framing Services