Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
Grant Wilson, John Fiske and Stanley L. Klos. Six volumes, New York: D. Appleton
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PERSON, Thomas, patriot, born in Granville county, North Carolina, about 1740; died in Franklin county, North Carolina, in November, 1799. He was devoted to the cause of liberty, strenuously opposed the stamp-act, and was an active Regulator. hi 1770 he presented a petition from the inhabitants of Bute county complaining of the many exorbitant and oppressive measures of the public officers. For a time he was confined in prison by Governor Tryon, from whom he suffered severe treatment, and he was one of those that were excepted in Tryon's proclamation of 1771, which offered pardon to those that would take the oath of allegiance. While he was on parole he rode secretly to Goshen by night and secured his valuable possessions in a brick kiln, returning at dawn to Hillsboro. When the British soldiers demanded of the Reverend Mr. Micklejohn, in whose house he resided, whether Person had broken his parole the night before, " I supped and breakfasted with the general," was the equivocal reply. He was a delegate from Granville to the first colonial assembly that met in New Berne in defiance of the royal governor in 1774, and to that which met in Halifax on 15 April, 1776, and again on 12 November, 1776, to form the state constitution. He was appointed a brigadier-general of militia in 1776, and from 1777 till his death represented Granville county in the legislature. He was a surveyor by profession, and owned 70,000 acres of land. He left to Mr. Micklejohn his house, "Goshen Place," in Granville, which was afterward called "The Glebe." For his liberality to the State university one of the halls at Chapel Hill bears his name. A county of North Carolina was also named for him in 1791.
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