Great Dismal Swamp

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Related to Dismal Swamp Land Company: Great Dismal Swamp National Wildlife Refuge

Great Dismal Swamp

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In 1763, George Washington and nine other investors agreed to send five slaves each, along with equipment and provisions, into the Great Dismal Swamp so to begin the "work of draining, Improving and Saving the Land" ("Dismal Swamp Land Company articles of agreement" 1763).
The company moved to raise an additional $20,000 by selling shares, and by December the plan had raised over $10,000 of that amount through the investment of twelve men ("Dismal Swamp Land Company records" 1791-1834).
George Washington saw its fertile soil and massive trees as an economic opportunity and helped establish the Dismal Swamp Land Company to begin draining and lumbering operations.