Location, Location, Location

>Did you ever wonder what an eighteenth-century deed looked like? Wonder no more! I came across a deed (a portion of which is shown here) for a house on six acres of land in North Kingstown, RI, sold by Samuel Phillips to Daniel Updike on December 30, 1727 (as of tomorrow, exactly 280 years ago).

When this deed was signed, the French were expanding up the Mississippi (New Orleans was founded in 1719), and beefing up their forts on the approaches of the St. Lawrence to protect their settlements in New France and the fur trade with the Abenakis and other tribes. New Englanders were building their own forts, constituting an “arms race” which culminated in the French and Indian War thirty years later.

The property, by the way, was purchased for £250 (we were still an English colony, remember). A quick search tells me that the average cost today of a house on six acres in North Kingstown would be about $1 million.

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