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This article is from the Encyclopedia of North Carolina edited by William S. Powell. Copyright © 2006 by the University of North Carolina Press. Used by permission of the publisher. For personal use and not for further distribution. Please submit permission requests for other use directly to the publisher.

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Ramsgate Road

by William S. Powell, 2006

Tablet and boulder commemorating the Ramsgate Road, dedicated May 17, 1924 by the Bllomsbury Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution. Image from the North Carolina Booklet.Ramsgate Road, afterward corrupted into "Ramcat Road," was constructed by militiamen from Johnston and Wake Counties in about one week in May 1771 as a military road following an older Indian trail. Its purpose was to expedite the movement of equipment from Granville County to Hillsborough to suppress the Regulators. Its construction in so short a time was regarded as a remarkable accomplishment. The road was named for the one followed by Canterbury Pilgrims in England's County of Kent; it had been rehabilitated in 1749 leading to Ramsgate, a Harbor of Refuge for the Downs, a region similar to the North Carolina coast. North Carolinians undoubtedly felt that they had done the same with one of their old roads.

The Indian trail is shown on the John Collet map of 1770 and the Henry Mouzon map of 1775. Ramsgate Road is designated in an illustration of the Mouzon map in the North Carolina Booklet (1926).


Collier Cobb, "The Ramsgate Road," North Carolina Booklet 23 (1926).

Additional Resources:

"Marking the Ramsgate Road" The North Carolina Booklet 23. No. 1, 2, 3, 4. January, April, July, October 1926. p. 57-60.

Haywood, Marshall Delancey. "The Genesis of Wake County." The North Carolina Booklet 5. No. 1. July 1905. p. 6-7. (accessed September 26, 2012).

Haywood, Marshall Delancey. "Joel Lane: A Pioneer and Patriot of Wake County, North Carolina." The North Carolina Booklet 20. No. 2,3,4. October 1920, January-April 1921. 196. (accessed September 26, 2012).

Image Credits:

"Tablet and Boulder marking the Ramsgate Road, placed by the Bloomsbury Chapter Daughters of the Revolution." from "Marking the Ramsgate Road" The North Carolina Booklet 23. No. 1, 2, 3, 4. January, April, July, October 1926. p. 57.