Creation of the State of Frankland – This pamphlet was copied from the Tennessee Historical Society collection and is titled, “Declaration of Rights, also the Constitution or Form of Government agreed to, and resolved upon by the Representatives of the Freemen of the State of Frankland, elected and chosen for that particular purpose in Convention assembled at Greeneville, the 14th of November 1785.” Published in 1786 by Reverend Samuel Houston, it was given to the Tennessee Historical Society by J. G. M. Ramsey and believed to be the only copy remaining.
The Watauga Purchase – A deed between the settlers of this area and the Cherokee
Court of Oyer and Terminer and General Gaol Delivery A few documents were found from this court and after a bit of research it was learned that the North Carolina General Assembly establishd the court in 1782. The creation of this court gave the local residents a place to go to settle disputes without travelling to Morganton, North Carolina. Oyer means “to hear” and terminer means “to determine.” At the November 1784 session, the North Carolina General Assembly did away with this court by creating the Washington judicial district and creating the Superior Court of Law and Equity.
State of Franklin Era Documents (1784 – 1788) These documents were created during the time period when this area was a part of the State of Franklin or “Frankland.” Not everyone in this area recognized Franklin as a new state and there are only a few surviving documents that bear a heading noting, “Washington County, State of Franklin.”
Watauga Association Era Documents Records created prior to 1777.
Artifacts Collection (RG 28) Items in this collection were donated to the archives at various times by various persons as noted in the item list below. There are both items transferred from other county offices as well as items donated by private individuals.