He first traveled from England to North America as an agent of his brother-in-law, Ferdinando Gorges. According to Appleton's Cyclopedia, Governor Archdale "was sagacious, prudent, and moderate, and under his administration the province made great progress in internal improvements. He introduced rice culture into Carolina by distributing among some friends a bag of seed rice brought by the captain of a vessel from Madagascar."
The city of Archdale, North Carolina, which began as a Quaker settlement, was named for him because Archdale was himself a Quaker. There was also an Archdale Precinct in colonial Bath County, North Carolina, from 1705 until 1712.
Archdale published "A New Description of the Fertile and Pleasant Province of Carolina, with a Brief Account of its Discovery, Settling, and Government ,p to this Time, with several Remarkable Passages during My Time" (London, 1707). See Hewatt's "Historical Account of the Rise and Progress of the Colonies of South Carolina and Georgia" (London, 1779); Holmes's "Annals of America" (Cambridge, 1829) ; and Bancroft's "History of the United States" (New York, 1884).