The economy of the North Carolina colony was largely agrarian, with settlers growing crops such as tobacco, rice, and indigo. The colony was also renowned for its naval supply sector, which extracted tar, tar and turpentine from the vast pine forests. North Carolina was the most successful manufacturing state in the South and one of the country's top manufacturing states for nearly a century. The first Europeans to settle in North Carolina were the Spanish, first with Lucas Vázquez de Ayllón and then with Juan Pardo.
The Italian explorer Giovanni da Verrazzano is credited with landing in North Carolina in 1524.Pardo established the first real settlement in North Carolina through a system of six forts, but all the forts were destroyed and their inhabitants killed within a year and a half. In 1710, the colony was divided into North Carolina and South Carolina, and it finally became an official royal colony in 1729.The British government bought property rights to the province from the Lords Proprietors in 1729.The North Carolina Provincial Congress was also vital in the Revolution, enacting several key laws and resolutions, in particular the Halifax Resolutions of 1776, which were one of the first official calls for independence from Great Britain by any of the colonies.North Carolina would soon try to gain control of the larger colonial government, and in the spring of 1776, North Carolina voted to give its delegates to the Second Continental Congress the power to vote for independence. The state witnessed enormous social and economic transformations after the conflict, in particular the abolition of slavery and the rise of a new industrial economy. Life during the colonial period in North Carolina was characterized by plantation settlements and the desire to move west.In addition to its forest resources, North Carolina has large reserves of non-metallic rocks and minerals.
A joint investigation by North Carolina state professor Edward Kick and his colleague Adam Driscoll determined that it was North Carolina wood that provided natural capital, tall pine trees and naval deposits such as tar, turpentine and tar that were used to build the great warships of the British Empire.
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