Dr. Henry Woodward, South Carolina colonist, English Explorer

Dear Readers! Today is January 18, 2015 and this is an older unfinished post about the very cool explorer Henry Woodward, credited with bringing rice into the South Carolina colony for one thing, so I think for now I am just going to post it. So, as one wise person told me, “take what you like and leave the rest”. I will finish researching this and repost it soon!
Cheers and Happy New Year!

“The man that most students of South Carolina Indians would most like to interview would probably be Dr. Henry Woodward, and Englishman who lived in the area beginning as early as 1666. He was left by the Robert Sandford Expedition that year in exchange for an Indian called “Shadoo” as a sort of early cultural exchange program. He was not left against his will, but remained voluntarily. He returned to England in 1682 and was something of a celebrity.” – from Chapman J. Milling, Red Carolinians, p 55

Pg 104 Narratives of Early Carolina – Salley – pg 104
Woodward remains one of the most enigmatic English explorers of the period, intimately tied to the history of the Carolana settlement and its challenge to Spanish Florida. He was among the original English settlers and it was his first priority to learn about the country and its natives, including their languages. He entered the unexplored interior, traveling beyond the Chattahoochee River. In the 1660s, he appears to have been the first Englishman to trod the soil of what is today the central Florida Panhandle. Upon his return to the Atlantic coast, he encountered the Spaniards at their old settlement of Santa Elena, near what soon became the 1670 demarcation line between Spanish Florida and English Carolana. There, apparently, he was captured and carried to San Agustin. The governor of that city, Don Francisco de la Guerra y de la Vega, was surprised to receive a letter from Woodward in Latin, requesting baptism into the Catholic Church. Governor de la Guerra treated him more as a guest than as a prisoner. The learned doctor lived with the parish priest, Father Francisco de Sotolongo, a graduate of the University of Mexico, during the period of catechism. While in residence, Woodward noted a great deal about the Spanish status in Florida. Some historians believe that he might have allowed himself to be captured in order to spy out the Spaniard’s strength. After the sack of 1668, Woodward sailed from San Agustin with Searle’s buccaneers.

I leaveing an English man in their roome for the mutuall learning their language, and to that purpose one of my Company Mr. Henry Woodward, a Chirurgeon, had before I settout assured mee his resoluc +¯on to stay with the Indians if Ishould thinke convenient,1 wherefore I resolved to stay till 
the morning to see if the Indians would remaine constant in
this Intenc +¯on, according to which I purposed to treate fur­
ther with them on the morrowe, therefore I went a shoare
to their Towne, tooke Woodward and the Indian with mee
and in presence of all the Inhabitants of the place and of
the fellows relac +¯ons asked if they approved of his goeing along
with mee. They all with one voyce consented. After some
pause I called the Cassique and another old man (his second
in authority) and their wives, and in sight and heareing of
the whole Towne delivered Woodward into their charge, tell­
ing them that when I retorned I would require him att their
hands. They received him with such high testimonyes of
Joy and thankfullnes as hughely confirmed to mee their great
desire of our friendshipp and society. The Cassique placed 
Woodward by him uppon the Throne, and after lead him forth
and shewed him a large feild of Maiz which hee told him
should bee his, then hee brought him the Sister of the Indian
that I had with mee telling him that shee should tend him and
dresse his victualls and be careful of him that soe her Brother
might be the better used amongst us. I stayed a while being
wounderous civilly treated after their manner, and giveing
 Woodward formall possession of the whole Country to hold as
Tennant att Will of the right Honoble the Lords Proprietors, I
retorned aboard and imediately weighed and fell downe.

An Indian that came with mee from Edistowe with In­
tenc +¯on to goe no further then Port Royall seeing this kindnes
and mutuall obligation betweene us and the people of this
place, that his Nac +¯on or tribe might bee within the League,
voluntarily offered himselfe to stay with mee alsoe, and
 would not bee denyed, and thinking that soe hee should be the
more acceptable hee caused himselfe to be shoaren on the
Crowne, after the manner of the Port Royall Indians, a fashion 
which I guesse they have taken from the Spanish Fryers.
Here is a story about Henry Woodward and Capt. John Thurber

I was called to be an artist. And as an old old midwife said to me "If the Lord wants you to do something, you won't have no good luck' til you do." So, here I am, sharing what I love, longing to illuminate the work of art, which is everywhere.

Tagged with: , , , , ,
Posted in Arts & Culture, Charleston South Carolina, Native American, South Carolina History, travel
5 comments on “Dr. Henry Woodward, South Carolina colonist, English Explorer
  1. Charlotte – he was the first Englishman is SC also a direct ancestor on the distaff side that is his daughter(grandaughter?)married a Hutson.he encountered Westo Indians befriended and traded with them then went of to learn as many as four more Indian languages ,that is, he traded with four tribes(some Cherokee i am sure) in his life he had four wives (not at the same time!) and one of them was an Indian gal! he was indeed captured by Spaniards and taken to Saint Augustine(he is not the only of our ancestors to have had that misfortune! He then either bribed his way out or escaped…it goes on and on-his story is better than Pirates of the Caribbean and was thought to be a possible basis along with Alexander Selkirk for Robinson Crusoe(by Defoe)-couple that with GreatGrandpa’s memoirs which is better than Tom Sawyer and Huck Finn and you have a colorful bunch,not even mentioning our ancestor that fought with Francis Marion “the Swamp Fox” in the Revolution or the great great great uncle who signed the Articles of Confederation but was too ill to go back for the Constitution,he died without issue maybe never married? thanks for the post!

  2. should i have posted that on WordPress?i put it on FB

  3. Paula Hutson Simmons says:

    In Michael’s message, he had a question mark about whether Mary, nee Woodward, Chardon who married Rev. William Hutson was a daughter or grand-daughter of Dr. Henry Woodward. Mary was a grand-daughter, her father was Richard Woodward and mother Sarah Stanyarne. Richard was one of three children of Dr. Henry Woodward and his wife Mary, nee Godfrey, Browne. When I was in the Charleston Library a few years ago, there was a recent book that included the early families among them was our Dr. Woodward. It has detailed information on Henry Woodward and his first wife who lived in Virginia before he joined the expedition to South Carolina. Apparently, she was pregnant at the time and had a son who has living descendants. When I was living in Hampton, VA, I came across a history of early settlers near Norfolk, describing this marriage but the details were focused on Virginia not Dr. Woodward’s later Carolina and Florida adventures. I don’t know where the Thurber history got the info on Dr. Woodward going back to England. The version I heard is that Dr. Woodward was with the Indians and when he became gravely ill or had already died, they carried him back to Charleston as a symbol of respect.
    Extra ps about the Godfrey line- a long time friend had recently received her family’s history after her father died. When she let me read it I discovered we were related. She descends from the brother of Mary Godfrey. Small world. Love to all, cousin Paula

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 721 other followers

What’s this?

Welcome to my blog about the Lowcountry of South Carolina, a place proud with beauty, history and art. Sometimes we feel a call, to be, to go, to do. I was called to be an artist, and as an old midwife from Alabama said, “If the good Lord wants you to do something, you won’t have no good luck until you do it.”

So here I am writing about what I know, about the 'under glimmer' as the poet Basho, says, the way I have learned to see, to notice. I am inspired by, and talking about the history and art and culture of this place that has called me to herself. By the ancestors.

My background includes a degree in fine arts from a small private college in Florida, and before that, four years of all girls' boarding school in Asheville. I worked as a professional photographer, helped my children grow up, and now and I love seasoned things, good food, better conversation, beauty, my beloved and beautiful Italian Greyhound, Beau. Moved by the sacred places and stories of this beautiful historic land called the Lowcountry, I am here in spirit and I hope to infect you with my love of this place.

%d bloggers like this: