1604 – Founding of the first settlement at Jamestown, VA.
1620 – Founding of Plymouth Colony.
1623 – First charter for Carolina Colony granted to Sir Robert Heath by King Charles I. Charter would never be used.
1630 – Founding of Boston
1633 – Founding of Middle Plantation in Virginia, later to become Colonial Williamsburg.
1649 – King Charles I is tried by a court of Puritans, convicted of treason, and beheaded. Oliver Cromwell comes to power.
1650 – First settlements near Albemarle Sound, in what today is North Carolina, by frontiersmen from Virginia.
1660 – Cromwell dies and his son, Richard, is too weak to take power. The Prince of Wales, Charles II, assumes the throne.
1663 – Charles II, as repayment for their political support against the forces of Cromwell, grants eight ex-generals, the Lords Proprietors, title to Carolina. Charter is later amended to include the Albemarle Sound settlements.
1666 – Capt. Robert Sanford explores and names the Ashley River. On June 23 takes formal possession of Carolina for England and the Proprietors.
1669 – (July 21) The Fundamental Constitution of Carolina, written by the philosopher John Locke, serving as secretary to Ashley-Cooper, is approved by the Lords Proprietors. Its guarantee of religious freedom, in language similar to Locke's A Letter Concerning Toleration, will have a profound and lasting influence on the development of Charleston's social fabric, leading to the immigration of such diverse groups as French Hugenots and Sephardic Jews.
1669 – Carolina colonists sail from London on three ships: the Albemarle, the Port Royal, and the Carolina.
1669 – (Nov 2) The colonists reach Barbados, where their ships are struck by a hurricane. The Albemarle is destroyed and the Port Royal and Carolina are damaged.