Daniel and Rebecca Axtell
Sometime, when you have a few minutes, you
need to take this trip. From
Summerville, go down Bacon’s
Bridge Road. On
your right, you'll see a street named
Lee Street. If
you're coming from
Lee Street will be on your left.
Turn on this residential street taking it to the end
where there is a stop sign.
King Charles Circle.
Turn right, go just a few feet and turn left on
Follow this street up the hill to
In front of you is a small park with
going around it. You'll see a sign
“Newington Plantation” a grant from King Charles, 1680.
Take a second look, 1680, that was a long time ago.
Well, here's your local history.
In 1680, Daniel Axtell along with his wife and family
Carolina. In 1660 Daniel’s
father, also Daniel Axtell, had been drawn, hanged and
quartered, for his involvement in the death of King Charles I.
Daniel had been a merchant in
London and had made out his will on
August 3, 1678. Now Daniel and his wife Rebecca were excited
about this new opportunity.
King Charles II had given Daniel Axtell a grant of 3000
acres. Daniel had been so excited he had
talked up the new territory to his friends.
Some of his friends decided to move to
Carolina. Like Ralph
Izard who arrived here October 3, 1682, and Robert Cuthbert.
Good things kept happening to Daniel.
He was appointed a landgrave on August 10, 1681. His appointment
was from a motion made by John Archdale, then acting as one of
the proprietors. But good things didn't
always happen to Landgrave Daniel Axtell.
When the Axtell family left
England, they had left behind
their oldest son, named for his father, Daniel Axtell.
Lady Rebecca was excited about seeing her son.
She had gotten word saying her son was coming to
Carolina. But she got
the bad news when the family went down to meet the ship.
The captain told her, that her son had died during the
trip. The captain had buried Daniel at sea.
Daniel and Rebecca Axtell had seven children.
The first child to be born was a daughter, Sibilla.
The second child was a son Daniel who died at sea in
1681. The third child was another daughter, Mary.
Mary grew up to marry a gentleman with the last name of
Cuthbert. The fourth child was another son.
He was named for his mother's maiden name,
Holland became a
landgrave upon the death of his father.
Holland died in 1692. The fifth child was Rebecca.
Rebecca ended up, marrying John Moore.
John and Rebecca moved to
where he became Attorney General and the King’s collector of
Pennsylvania, where they remained until
their deaths. The sixth child was another daughter named
Elizabeth. She would
grow up to marry Francis Turgis.
Elizabeth had children by Francis.
He passed away and in December of 1698 she married
Governor Joseph Blake. The seventh and last
daughter to be born was Anne. Anne grew up
and married John Alexander and after his death she married
Well let's get back to the history of the property.
On December 13, 1680, Daniel Axtell received a grant for
3000 acres. He named the land, Newington
Plantation for his friend Stoke Newington,
Daniel himself ended up dying in 1684. He had
built a wooden frame but never completed the house.
The family got together, completed the house and moved
in. Lady Rebecca Axtell, in September 1705,
was granted 1000 acres of land on the north side of the
1711, Lady Rebecca Axtell gave the plantation to her daughter,
Elizabeth Blake. The first house was burned
by Indians in 1715, during the Yamassee Indian War.
Sometime later the house was rebuilt, and Lady Axtell
lived there with her daughter Elizabeth and her grandson,
Colonel Joseph Blake. A few years later Lady
Rebecca Axtell died and was buried beside her husband, Daniel
Axtell. Today their graves are unmarked.
Colonel Joseph Blake was one of the richest
men in the low country. It was at that time
he reportedly removed the second house and built a magnificent
structure. It was a mansion with 100 windows
in the front so he could look out and see his property.
It had a double row of live oak trees coming up the hill,
a reflecting pond and beautiful gardens. It
was reported to be one of the largest mansions built in the
South. By the time of the Revolutionary war
the house was considered a showplace.
The Blake family lived on the property until 1837 when it was
sold to Henry A. Middleton. Eight years
later, in 1845, the mansion burned. It
remained in that state until 1876, when Middleton leased the
property to the
United States government as an
experimental tea farm, under the direction of Dr. Charles
When Daniel and Rebecca Axtell’s son
Holland, died in 1692, he ended the
Carolina Axtell name. In his will made out
December 17, 1691, and proved before Governor Ludwell, May 4,
1692, “Holland gave his mother, Rebecca Axtell, a negro man,
named Guy, an Indian boy, named Nero, and all his cattle,
horses, and ready money not otherwise bequeathed; gave
brother-in-law, John Alexander, a diamond ring; gave
brother-in-law, Francis Turgis, two cows, two calves, a mare and
her colt, and a silver medal; gave sister, Anne Alexander, four
silver salt cellers; gave sister, Mary Cuthbert £5
to buy a ring; gave Thomas Graves a cow and a calf, a
pocket pistol and a hone.” Witnesses: B. Waring,
Waring and John Stevens. [Records of the Court of Ordinary of
South Carolina, book No.1, 1692-1700,
Most of the houses you see today in Newington Plantation
Estate were built in the early 1970’s. The
reflecting pond is still there, but you'll find it in the back
of some of the homes. Summerville is a neat
place to live. There's a lot of history here,
from the early colonial period and Daniel Axtell.
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