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This Day in Georgia History

March 20, 1744

Parliament Voted to Reimburse Oglethorpe

During Georgia’s first decade, lack of adequate funding was always a problem. To meet many emergencies, James Oglethorpe first used personal funds. When those ran out, he borrowed heavily from many different English creditors using his Godalming home, Westbrook Manor, and other property holdings in nearby Haslemere as security. After his final return to England in 1743, he petitioned the British War Office for reimbursement in order to pay off his loans. Otherwise, he stood to lose all of the personal properties he had earlier mortgaged on behalf of Georgia. The War Office finally agreed on a figure of £66,109 and recommended that Parliament pay this amount to Gen. Oglethorpe. Although there is some confusion over whether the date was March 20 or March 22, the House of Commons voted to reimburse Gen. James Oglethorpe the entire £66,109.

To view a publication on James Oglethorpe, see the Digital Library of Georgia.