1606 - Virginia Company established in London

The crest of the Sir Walter Raleigh's Virginia Company

        Sir Walter Raleigh's new trading company was drawn up along the same lines as the East Indian Company, and would operate in the new world at the pleasure of the king, who granted a royal charter for the new company on April 10, 1606.

         The company's charter drew a line through the middle of the north American continent and established north and south Virginias, the former including what is today New York and New England, the latter comprised of everything south of the Potomac river at the had of Chesapeake Bay.

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         The sanction of the company's royal title to land in the new world was based on the notion that the English had superior rights in America.  This assertion was based on nothing more than say-so.  A debate arose behind closed doors as to whether this would be enough to fight off a challenge from the pope.  The faction that argued 'there is much confession in every unnecessary apologia,' prevailed, and the matter was dropped.  The conquest of the Americas and her inhabitants would prove England's superior right soon enough.