Fayetteville Observer, Thursday, October 24, 1895; Issue 653; col E
Letter to the Editor

A BIT OF LOCAL HISTORY
Transcribed by Myrtle Bridges  County Coordinator

Fayetteville, NC, October 7, 1895
Mr. Editor:--In the very interesting, well written, and instructive History of Fayetteville which appeared in the Woman's 
Edition of your valuable paper we note, relative to the former name of our town--Campbellton--the following: "The Legislature 
incorporated it in the year 1762, and it was called Campbellton, in honor of Mr. Farquhard Campbell, who was a very important 
personage among them. "This, for the sake of historical accuracy, we beg to correct.

At the time mentioned (1762) Mr. Hector McNeill ("Colonel Hector of the Bluff; "first High Sheriff of Cumberland; her first 
representative in the Assembly; and, with his colleague Mr. Alexander McAlester, the first Presbyterian Elder at the Bluff 
under the Rev. James Campbell and Mr. Alexander McAlester (also one of the first members of the Assembly from Cumberland; after-
wards Colonel of the County troops, member of the celebrated halifax and Hillsboro Conventions; and, along with Mr. MacNeill, a 
Presbyterian Elder at the Bluff under the ministry of Rev. Mr. Campbell of Campbellton, in the peninsular of Kintyre (Cantire), 
Argyleshire, Scotland) were then the representatives from Cumberland in the General Assembly: Mr. Farquhard Campbell, a younger 
man and a relative of Mr. McAlester (first cousin of his second wife, Miss Flora MacNeill) not then having attained any especial 
prominence.

When the matter of establishing a town in our section was first proposed, there was a fight between the citizens of Bladen and 
Cumberland over the site; the former wanted it a Cross Creek, and the latter, at the mouth of Rockfish. A committee was appointed, 
who made an inspection and at the next session of the Legislature (April 20, 1762) reported unfavorably on both places, and a 
selected "A Tract of land belonging to the heirs of John and William Russell, deceased, as the most convenient place for erecting 
a town." On April 22, 1762, "Mr. Cornelius Harnett moved for leave to bring a Bill for Establishing a Town on the Lands of John and 
William Russell, minors, sons of John Russell deceased, on the West side of the North west branch of Cape Fear River, near the mouth 
of Cross Creek, on the dividing lines between the Counties of Bladen and Cumberland," He was given leave and he then presented "the 
above mentioned Bill, which he read in his place, and delivered in at the Table, where the same was again read by the Clerk, passed, 
and ordered to be sent to the Council,"whither it was sent by Mr. William Bartram, of Bladen, and Mr. Alexander McAlester. On November 
27, 1762, there was received from the Assembly by Mr. Maurice Moore (from the Borough of Brunswick) and Mr. William Bartram "A Bill 
for Establishing a Town on the lands of John and William Russell, minors, sons of John Russell deceased, on the West side of the North-
west River, near the mouth of Cross Creek by the name of ______ Town and other purposes." On Dec. 3, 1762, the Bill with the name 
still blank was read the first time and passed. On Dec. 7, 1762, it was, with the name still blank, read the second time, amended and 
passed, and sent up by Mr. Hector MacNeill and Mr. Alexander MacAlester. On December 8, 1762, it was received from the Assembly as follows: 
"A Bill Establishing a Town, etc., etc., by the name of Campbelton Town and otherpurposes," and on Dec. 11, 1762, it appears among the 
Bills presented to the Governor for his signature as "An Act for Establishing a Town, etc., on the lands of John and William Russel, minors, 
near the mouth of Cross Creek, by the name of Campbelton.

From this it will clearly appear that the town was named, as all of our early accounts have it, from the old Highland Town of 
Campbellton in Cantire in Argyleshire, the principal town of the section from which most of our earliestsettlers came, the Rev. 
James Campbell having been born in this town, and Alexander MacAlester, Col. Hector MacNeill, with whomto distinguish him will 
be mentioned his brother, Capt Duncan MacNeill (also a staunch old Scotch Presbyterian and the father of old Mr. Duncan MacNeill, 
whom all of our older citizens remember); Mr. Farquhard Campbell; and Mr. William Bartram--it may be a matter of interest to note 
that many of the descendants of these men still live among us honored and respected as the sinew and backbone of Cumberlandand Bladen 
just as their forefathers were one hundred and fifty years ago. Mack 
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