Dr. Henry Woodward

Male 1646 - Abt 1686  (40 years)


Personal Information    |    Notes    |    Sources    |    All    |    PDF

  • Name Henry Woodward  [1
    Prefix Dr. 
    Born 1646  , , , Barbados Find all individuals with events at this location  [2
    Gender Male 
    Died Abt 1686  [2
    Person ID I13843  Alger
    Last Modified 9 Feb 2020 

    Family Mary Godfrey,   b. Abt 1650, Chattahoochee River, , Georgia, USA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Yes, date unknown 
    Children 
     1. Col. John Woodward,   b. 19 Feb 1680/81, Chattahoochee River, , Georgia, USA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 1727  (Age 45 years)
     2. Richard Woodward,   b. 1683,   d. 1725  (Age 42 years)
    Last Modified 31 Jul 2015 
    Family ID F5020  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Notes 
    • The following is from "Sketch of Dr. Henry Woodward and Some of His Descendants", by Hon. Joseph W. Barnwell in Vol. VIII S.C. Hist. Mag., p. 29

      Dr. Henry Woodward, conspicuous in all histories of South Carolina, was the first English settler of that colony. He came as Lord Shaftesbury's friend and acted as his Deputy from 1672 to 1677, his name appearing on numberless old records. He made treaties with the Indiens, acted as their friend and interpreter, and made extended expeditions into the interio9r of the country. The Proprietors soon realized his value and commended the discoveries made by his industries and hazard. He was given a grant of two thousand acres of land.

      The following is from a website: http://users.erols.com/halwood/bio.htm

      His name was Henry Woodward - he was born in Barbados, of English parents, in 1646. In 1666 an English expedition from Barbados under Robert Sandford landed in the area around Port Royal along the lower South Carolina coast, leaving surgeon Dr. Henry Woodward in the Yamassee town at Santa Elena in exchange for the son of the local Indian chief (a learning experience for both), in anticipation of a return voyage the following year.

      In 1667, following continual slave-raids by the Chichimeco/Westo, Yamassee chiefs under the chief of Santa Elene successfully petitioned the governor of Spanish Florida for permission to settle among the Guale and Mocama missions of the Georgia coast. As part of the deal, Englishman Henry Woodward was betrayed by the Yamassee and turned over to the Spanish, who placed him in prison for opening a trading post in Georgia.

      Woodward later escaped when an English pirate raided and burned St. Augustine in 1668. He spent the next year aboard the pirate ship, serving as ship's surgeon until he was shipwrecked and marooned on Nevi, British West Indies. In 1670, Dr. Henry Woodward was rescued and taken aboard the "Carolina" and was subsequently dropped off at Charles Town, South Carolina, close to his farm near present day Charleston.

      In 1674, Henry Woodward successfully negotiated trade relations with the Westo Indians along the Savannah River. At that time, Carolina had replaced Virginia as the primary market for Georgia Indian slaves. In 1680, Carolina colonists led by Henry Woodward mounted a combined raid against the Georgia missions using Westo/Chichimeco and other allied Indians (the Uchise of central Georgia and the Chiluque of the South Carolina coast). Led by Englishmen, some 300 warriors first assault the Yamassee town of San Sim'on on present day St. Simons Island before withdrawing to attack the Guale capitol at mission Santa Catalina de Guale on St. Catherines Island. Santa Catalina was abandoned and the occupants withdrew to Sapelo Island.

      In 1685 on a ship from Madagascar, a bushel of Madagascar rice was given by the captain to Dr. Henry Woodward. Using this gift, Henry introduced rice as a crop on his farm in Charles Town, South Carolina. The strains of rice that he cultivated spread into a major crop within the state. He also was credited with inventing his favorite dish called "Hopping John", named after his first son, a dish of ham, black eyed peas and Madagascar rice with seasonings, which is eaten to this day in the South before the New Year to ensure a prosperous year.

      In 1686, using Yamassee intermediaries, Carolina traders under Henry Woodward finally established trade contact the the Coweta/Kasihta Indians (the Apalachicola province, or emergent Lower Creek) of the lower Chattahoochee River in western Georgia; Spanish reprisals under Antonio Matheos in the Apalachee mission province result in the destruction of four towns. Shortly thereafter, Dr. Henry Woodward became ill and at the point of death was carried into the forest by approximately 200 Indians that he had lived with and been doctor to during his life in America. The Indians buried him in an undisclosed location.

      The publisher Putnam included him in it's book of early English explorers and stated that a number of historians wanted him, rather than George Washington, to have the title of "Father of this country". They based this on the fact that he accomplished opening up American trade routes into North and South Carolina, Georgia and Florida, even though the hostile Indians and Spanish army had kept settlers out of those areas since they first arrived in America

      The man was an explorer, a doctor to the native American Indians, an inventor, a farmer, an Indian slave trader and pirate. While he lived with the Indians, he studied their folk medicine and brought into popular usage a drug from the bark of a tree used to combat malaria. It would make quite a movie if you showed all that he did. Some of the Indians loved him and one of his wives was an Indian. He didn't moralize about slave trading of Indians from Georgia who had betrayed him, he considered it a necessary part of frontier life. He had two sons by his wife, Mary, but he was also fond of visiting any pretty women within traveling distance. He was a good looking rogue and probably fathered more children than were claimed.

      Compiled and edited by Allen Alger, Alger Family Historian - e-mail: alger@alum.mit.edu [3]

  • Sources 
    1. [S11] Alger files - Johnson, Lisa, Lisa Johnson, Email from Lisa Johnson dated 23 Feb 2004 - p. 8 (Reliability: 3).

    2. [S11] Alger files - Johnson, Lisa, Lisa Johnson, Email from Lisa Johnson dated 23 Feb 2004 - p. 9 (Reliability: 3).

    3. [S11] Alger files - Johnson, Lisa, Lisa Johnson, Email from Lisa Johnson dated 23 Feb 2004 - p. 9-10 (Reliability: 3).


Home Page |  What's New |  Most Wanted |  Surnames |  Photos |  Histories |  Documents |  Cemeteries |  Places |  Dates |  Reports |  Sources