Episode 16: Get to Know James Edward Oglethorpe Part 4, 1743 – 1785
Oglethorpe left Georgia in July 1743 and never returned again. Oglethorpe continued to attend meetings of the Georgia Trustees in England for a little while, but he eventually stopped. In 1745 Oglethorpe was put in charge of troops and sent to defend England against a Jacobite uprising in Scotland. If you’ll remember, Oglethorpe’s family was Jacobites. Some people thought Oglethorpe didn’t try hard against the Jacobites even though he did keep them from invading. He had to go to court to defend his actions. He was officially acquitted – meaning he didn’t face punishment – but his reputation was hurt.
In 1752 Oglethorpe lost his Parliament seat – that same year Georgia became a royal colony and the Georgia Trustees no longer had any say in how the colony would run. For the rest of his life, Oglethorpe spent his time with his wife and friends. He also supported writers and spent a lot of time studying and reading.
Oglethorpe lived long enough to see Georgia become a state in the United States of America. Did you know that Oglehtorpe met with John Adams twice in June 1785? John Adams the first U.S. ambassador to Great Britain. John Adams wrote that Oglethorpe “expressed his great esteem and regard for America” on their first visit together. His two meetings with John Adams were some of his last. Oglethorpe died on June 30, 1785.
acquitted: An acquitted defendant is off the hook. If you’re on trial for a crime and you’re found “not guilty,” then you’re acquitted and you can go free.
ambassador: An ambassador is an official representative for his or her country, stationed in another nation.
colony: A colony is a group of people who settle in a new place but keep ties to their homeland. The people who founded the United States first came to America to live as part of a British colony.
esteem: Esteem is all about respect and admiration. If you have high self-esteem, it means you like yourself.
Jacobite: a supporter of James II after he was overthrown or a supporter of the Stuarts.
Georgia Trustees: a group of men appointed by the King to administer the Georgia Colony from 1732 to 1752.
Parliament: The most common meaning of parliament refers to a country’s legislative (law-making) body. England’s parliament is very famous.
reputation: Your reputation is the general belief or opinion that other people have about you. If you are considered trustworthy and kind, you have a good reputation.
The definitions on this list were taken from Vocabulary.com. Read a review of vocabulary.com on Sophia’s Schoolhouse.
Question 1: True or False? James Edward Oglethorpe returned to Georgia several times after 1743. _________
Question 2: What American did James Edward Oglethorpe meet with twice in 1785?
a. Thomas Jefferson
b. John Adams
c. Abraham Lincoln
d. George Washington
Question 3: True or False? James Edward was acquitted of any wrong doing in the Jacobite uprising. _________
Question 4: True or False? Oglethorpe died in Savannah, Georgia? _________
*Scroll to bottom for answers.
Suggested Links and Readings:
Inscoe, John, ed. James Edward Oglethorpe: New Perspectives on His Life and Legacy. Savannah: Georgia Historical Society, 1997.
Jackson, Harvey H., and Phinizy Spalding, ed. Forty Years of Diversity: Essays on Colonial Georgia. Athens: University of Georgia Press, 1984.
British Ship from the Collection of Edwin Jackson.
Oglethorpe’s Uniform by C.C.P Lawson. Historic postcard from unknown source.
“House of Commons, as it appeared in 1741/2.” The Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Division of Art, Prints and Photographs: Print Collection, The New York Public Library Digital Collections.
Map of County Savannah, 1741. From the Georgia Historical Society Map Collection, MS1361-MP 030.
Elderly James Oglethorpe, lithograph, in, Biographical memorials of James Oglethorpe : founder of the colony of Georgia in North America by Thaddeus Mason Harris. From the Georgia Historical Society Rare Collection, F289 .O34 1841.
Statue of Oglethorpe in Savannah. Photograph by Lindsay Sheldon.
*Video Quiz Answers
Question 1. False; Question 2. B; Question 3. True; Question 4. False