Charles Carroll 1661-1720

From Book Owners Online

Charles CARROLL the Settler 1661-1720

Carroll's bookplate (British Museum Franks Collection *192)

Biographical Note

Born in Ireland, second son of Daniel Carroll of Aghagurty and Litterlouna. Historians use the distinction 'the Settler' to distinguish him from other Charles Carrolls, most notably his son Charles Carroll of Annapolis (1702-1782) and Charles Carroll of Carrollton (1737-1832).

Carroll was educated in France at Lille and the University of Douai where he studied the humanities, philosophy, and civil and canon law. In 1685 Carroll moved to London where he was admitted to the Inner Temple to study law. Upon obtaining a commission as Attorney General of Maryland, he left England for the United States in the summer of 1688 (ODNB). From 1689 to 1717 he held the office of Attorney General for the Calvert Proprietorship. Additionally, he held the office of Attorney General of the Maryland Colony from 1716 to 1717.

While in Maryland, Carroll acquired land and slaves, built a lucrative mercantile business, and was the colony's principal banker. At the time of his death in 1720, Carroll had possessed the "most substantial estate ever probated in Maryland to that time" (ODNB).


Used an early armorial bookplate (1702), Franks *192 and 5234. The extent and disposition of his library are unknown.

Carroll's son, Charles Carroll of Annapolis, does note that his father brought a "little Irish Manuscript Book" that contained the "Genealogies of the O'Carrolls" with him to Maryland in 1688 (Hoffman).

Characteristic Markings

None of Carroll's books have been identified, but the American Heraldry Society does note that his bookplate features his family's coat of arms.