Culpeper, Thomas, Lord, governor of Virignia from May 10, 1680, to August 10, 1680, and from December 17, 1682, to May 28, 1683, was the eldest son of John Lord Culpeper, whom he succeeded as Baron of Thorseway on the death of the later in 1660. Lord John Culpeper was one of the most eminent friends of Charles I. in the civil war in England, and one of the first acts of Charles II., after the execution of his father, was to grant to him and Henry Bennett, Earl of Arlington, and several other great favorites the Northern Neck of Virginia, lying between the Potomac and Rappahannock river. This grant, after lying dormant during the commonwealth, was revived on the restoration of the king and ultimately became vested by purchase in Sir Thomas Culpeper, who in 1674 received in company with Lord Arlington the benefits of another grant of all Virginia for thirty-one years. Though neither of these grants were intended to interfere with the political government of the colony as it then existed, their provisions, especially those of the latter grant, were so extensive that had they been completely executed little but the shadow of power would have been left to the central authority. Eventually, by purchase Lord Thomas Culpeper possessed himself of both patents and all the privileges and benefits of each. Naturally these grants were very distasteful to the Virginians, and for a long time they paid no attention to the demands of the patentees and of Culpeper, and sent various agents to England to protest against them. In 1675 Culpeper obtained from the king a commission to succeed Sir William Berkeley, on his demise, as governor of Virginia, and in May, 1680, he came to Virginia, hoping doubtless to put some life into the privileges of his proprietorship. He brought instruction intended to put the government of Virginia on a more royal basis, but he succeeded in carrying out only a part of his policy. The clerk of the assembly, who had hitherto been elected by that body, became now the appointee of the governor, a permanent revenue was established rendering the salaries of the governor an council independent of the people; and instead of annual meetings of the assembly, the custom of calling it for special occasions and proroguing it from time to time, was begun. In August, not long after the adjournment of the assembly, Culpeper set out for England by way of New England, whereupon, Sir Henry Chicheley reassumed the government. Culpeper was absent for more than two years from Virginia, during which time, on account of the low price of tobacco, the Plant Cutters rebellion occurred. Culpeper was ordered by the king to return to his charge, and he arrived in Virginia December 17, 1682, but found the rebellion already suppressed by Sir Henry Chicheley. To serve as an example, he, however, executed two of the ring leaders, and continued under bond for his appearance Major Robert Beverley, clerk of the assembly, who had been arrested by Sir Henry Chicheley as the chief instigator.Before leaving England he had received fresh instructions aimed at the rights and liberties of the assembly, but Culpeper declined to oppose himself to the popular will on most of the questions. The assembly, however, lost its power as the court of appeals, and the council, by order of the crown, was made the court of last resort, except in cases of £300 value, when an appeal might be made to the privy council in England. Culpeper soon gave the king and his advisers an opportunity of punishing him and replacing him with a more efficient instrument of tyranny. Directly in face of an order of the council forbidding him to receive any presents, he accepted large sums of money from the assembly, and contrary to another express order forbidding any colonial governor from absenting himself from his government without special leave, he returned a second time to England after a stay in the colony of only about five months. He was at once deprived of his office, and Lord Howard of Effingham dispatched to succeed him. A year later he sold the larger share of his Virginia rights to the crown for an annuity of £600 for twenty years, retaining only the portion of the territory called the Northern Neck, which was now confirmed to him by a patent from the crown dated September 27, 1688. While governor, however, he made a little headway in bringing the residents of the Northern Neck to submit to him as proprietor, and for many years after his death, which occurred in 1690, the inhabitants continued indifferent. It was not til 1703, when Robert Carter became the managing agent, that the people began to patent lands in his office. The proprietor then was Thomas Lord Fairfax, who before 1692 married Katherine, Lord Culpeper's only daughter, and heiress by his wife, Lady Marguerite Hesse.