William Spencer

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William Spencer

Birthplace: Stotfold, Bedfordshire, England
Death: May 1640
Hartford, Hartford County, Connecticut, United States
Immediate Family:

Son of Gerard Spencer, Sr.; Jarrard Spencer; Alice Spencer and Alice Spencer
Husband of Agnes Spencer and Agnes Spencer / Edwards
Father of Samuel Spencer, Sr.; Elizabeth Wellman; Sarah Case and Agnes Spencer
Brother of Sgt. Thomas Spencer; Richard Spencer; Henry Spencer; Elizabeth Tomlins, Twin; John Spencer and 9 others
Half brother of (No Name)

Occupation: Selectman, elected to first assembly of Connecticut, Reverend
Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:

About William Spencer

"The Four Spencer Brothers", 1950, compiled by Donald Lines Jacobus, "The American Genealogist. New Haven, CT: D. L. Jacobus, 1937-. (Online database. AmericanAncestors.org. New England Historic Genealogical Society, 2009 - .)" viewed by Kris Stewart, Jun 11, 2013

incorrectly identifies Agnes as likely Agnes Tucker....this is disproven elsewhere...

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"Gerard (1) Spencer (1614-1685) along with his older brothers, William (1601-1640), Thomas (1607-1687), and Michael (1611-1653) were among the very first settlers in New England under the auspices of the Massachusetts Bay Company. Their sister, Elizabeth Spencer, also was a pioneer as the wife of Timothy Tomlins. Almost certainly all were among the first passengers of the Winthrop Fleet when the first contingent of eleven ships reached New England in 1630." [Jack T. & Edith W. Spencer, Gerard Spencer, A Pioneer of Cambridge, Lynn & Haddam; Connecticut Nutmegger, Sept 1997, pgs 188-614, as cited in http://ketchum.bobaddleman.com/spencer_family.html]

  • Our New England ancestors and their descendants, 1620-1900: historical ... By Henry Whittemore
  • http://archive.org/details/ournewenglandanc00whit
    • Spencer and Allied Families
  • Pg. 49-84
  • http://archive.org/stream/ournewenglandanc00whit#page/104/mode/1up
  • Pg. 53
  • Prof. Ray T. Spencer while making researches in his own line, discovered among the church records of St. George's Parish, Stotfold, Bedfordshire, England. much interesting data, concerning the line of Gerrard Spencer, the father of William, Thomas, Michael and Gerrard the emigrants, from which it appears that the above named Gerrard was the son of Michael who also had a brother Gerrard, and they were the sons of John. Thus three generations preceding the emigrants are definitely established. The church records of St. George's Parish, above referred to, show that "June 9, 1558, John Spencer, Sen., was buried."
  • There is evidence to show that this John was the father of Michael and of the first Gerrard mentioned.
  • The ancestry of Gerard Spencer and his brothers William, Thomas and Michael Spencer, appears from the parish registers of Edworth and Stotfield in Bedfordshire, Eng., and other contemporaneous documents.
  • Jan. 25, 1555, Michael Spencer and Annis Liuur were married (the last name of Annis is so poorly written in the record that is cannot be definitely determined.)
  • April 20, 1557, John, son of Michael Spencer baptized.
  • May 27, 1558, was baptized Michael, son of Michael Spencer.
  • April 15, 1560, buried Michael, son of Michael Spencer.
  • 23 Feb. 1561, Annis, the wife of Michael Spencer, was buried.
  • 20 Aug., 1564, Joan, the daughter of Michael Spencer, was baptized.
  • 30 Aug., 1566, Alice, daughter of Michael Spencer, was baptized. }Twins.
  • 30 Aug., 1566, Michael Spencer, was baptized,} Twins
  • 24 July, 156?, Ann, daughter of Michael Spencer baptized.
  • 30 July, 1568, Jarratt Spencer and Ellen Whitson were married, whose will was proved at London, 20 May, 1577; he was brother of Michael the elder.
  • http://archive.org/stream/ournewenglandanc00whit#page/106/mode/1up
  • Pg. 54
  • 12 March, 1571, Thomas, son of Michael Spencer was baptized.
  • 20 May, 1576, Gerat Spencer, son of Michael Spencer, and Elizabeth his wife, baptized.
  • 9 July, 1580, Richard, son of Michael and Elizabeth Spencer, baptized.
  • 18 Nov., 1599, Elizabeth, wife of Michael Spencer, was buried.
  • It is quite probable that Michael Spencer of Edworth, and Gerrard Spencer of Biggleswade, were sons of John Spencer, Senior, and Ann Spencer who burials are recorded in Edworth register, the former June 9, 1558, and the later June 16, 1569: Nothing more is known of them than what is disclosed by these records .... etc.
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  • Families of Early Hartford, Connecticut By Lucius Barnes Barbour Pg.556
  • http://books.google.com/books?id=WJ_XiLoXvLkC&pg=PA558&lpg=PA558&dq=Hannah+Hill+Spencer+1692&source=bl&ots=C4QaMah3Lw&sig=0AomX9yl_smnX-vhZHXUA_OnIVI&hl=en&ei=cseLTITSNIr2tgOGtK3RBA&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=10&ved=0CDQQ6AEwCTgU#v=onepage&q=Hannah%20Hill%20Spencer%201692&f=false
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William. The earliest documentation available is for William (as deputy from Cambridge to the General Court in May, 1632 - no ships would have arrived in 1632 by then), showing arrival by the end of 1631. He was 30 years old then, and married Agnes Harris. The "Spencers of the Great Migration" reports he returned to England to marry her about 1633 and then brought her back. He first settled in Cambridge, but was in Hartford, Connecticut by 1639. He was very active in the community and the Great Migration Begins shows many committees and positions he held in the community. He owned at least 11 parcels of land in Cambridge in 1635. He was the first to die, at a relatively young age of only 39, leaving three kids 1-7 years of age.

His widow, Agnes Harris, married, second,William Edwards in 1645, and he became the step-father to the Spencer children. By her second marriage, she became matriarch of the Edwards clan that includes Jonathan Edwards, the noted preacher of the Great Awakening, and Aaron Burr. Thus, descendants of William Spencer are half-cousins of their Edwards kin, by sharing Agnes Harris as their ancestral "mom." Agnes Harris is of royal descent. See Royal Descents of 500 Immigrants, by Roberts.

William and Agnes SPENCER settled at NewTown (Cambridge), MA in 1632, and he took the Freeman's Oath on Mar. 4, 1632/3. He was Deputy to the General Court seven times 1634-1638, Selectman in 1635, Lt. of the Train Band 1632, and charter member of the Ancient and Honourable Artillery Company in 1638/9. The family moved to Hartford, CT in 1639. [1]

Children of William and Agnes: Elizabeth married first William WELLMAN, and second Jacob JAY; Sarah married John CASE; and Samuel, Sr. married Sarah MEAKINS (a 4-great grandson, bibliophile William Augustus SPENCER, perished in the sinking of the Titanic).

Text References ↑ Lawson, Steven. Kinnexions (Spencer Ancestry). http://kinnexions.com/smlawson/index.htm

Sources S1. Weis, Frederick Lewis. Ancestral Roots of Sixty Colonists Who Came to New England between 1623 and 1650: The Lineage of Alfred the Great, Charlemagne, Malcolm of Scotland, Robert the Strong, and Some of Their Descendants 8th ed., p 229 S2. Manwaring, Charles William, A Digest of the Early Connecticut Probate Records [online database] Names his son, Samuel and daughters, Sarah and Elizabeth. Also names cousin Matthew Allyn and "my brother" John Pratt and John Taylcoate (i.e., Talcott) S3. William Spencer, in Anderson, Robert Charles. The Great Migration Begins: Immigrants to New England, 1620-1633 S4. Jeffhomes/Magna Carta Ancestry, p.416 Notes N1. The will has been dated March 4th as well as May 4th, so the month of execution is difficult to discern.

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  • The descendants of William and Elizabeth Tuttle, who came from old to New England in 1635, and settled in New Haven in 1639, with numerous biographical notes and sketches : also, some account of the descendants of John Tuttle, of Ipswich; and Henry Tuthill, of Hingham, Mass. (1883)
  • http://www.archive.org/stream/descendantsofwil01tutt#page/n841/mode/2up
  • Rev. Richard Edwards came from Wales to London, time Queen Elizabeth; he was a minister of the established chh. His wf. Anne was employed in some capacity in the Queen's household. She m. 2d hus. James Coles and came with her only child William Edwards to America. She d. in Hartford Feb. 20, 1679, leaving by will the use of her house and land to her son William during his life, then to her gr. s. Richard Edwards and his heirs forever. Wm. Edwards is named with Wm. Tuttle and others as concerned in the East Haven settlement. He m. about 1643 Agnes __, wid. of William Spencer; the latter of Hartford; selectman 1639, and d. 1640. Agnes, it is said, had two brothers in England, one of them Mayor of Exeter the other of Barnstable, Devon. By William Edwards she had an only child, Richard, who m. Elizabeth Tuttle; (2) Mary, dau. of Lieut-Col. John Talcott of Hartf. Col. Talcott was Justice of the Peace, Assistant from 1662 to 1668, Treasurer of the colony nineteen years, and distinguished himself as an officer in King Philip's war, in which he commanded a body of 550 men, composed of Englishmen and Mohegan Indians. He d. July 23, 1688. Inv. (english pound)2,272. Chil. of Richard Edwards by 2d m. 5 sons and 1 dau. 1. Jonathan, b. June 20, 1692; d. March 11, 1693. 2. John, Feb. 22, 1694; Dea.; d. May 16, 1769; m. Dec. 14, 1719, Christian Williamson, who d. June 18, 1769. 3. Hannah, Jan. 3, 1696; d. Oct. 17, 1747; m. March 1, 1722, Joseph Backus, jr. 4. Richard, Jan. 5, 1608; d. May 10, 1713. 5. Daniel, April 11, 1701; Hon.; d. Sept. 6, 1765; m. 1728 Sarah Hooker (gr. dau. of Rev. Thomas), who d. July 31, 1775, a. 70 yrs. 6. Samuel, Nov. 1, 1702; d. Nov. 4, 1732; m. 1731 Jerusha Pitkin, who d. July 31, 1799, a. 89 yrs--Godwin's Gen. Notes of Conn.
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WILLIAM SPENCER was born on October 11, 1601, in Stotfold, Bedfordshire, England, the son of Gerald and Alice (Whitbread) Spencer.

William married Agnes Tucker in England sometime before 1633. Agnes was born about 1601 in Barnstaple, Devonshire, England, the daughter of Richard and Agnes (Wyatt) Tucker. They were the parents of at least three children, one son and two daughters.

Between 1633 and 1636 they came to America and settled in Hartford, Connecticut.

William died in 1640 in Hartford, Connecticut, only about 39 years old.

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William Spencer one of the original founders of Hartford, Connecticut with his brother Thomas and John Arnold.

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William Spencer, Esq., of Lincoln's Inn, London, England, and of Boston, Massachusetts, 1631, one of the committee to form a body of laws for the government of the colony of Massachusetts, founder of the Ancient and Honorable Artillery. He was in Hartford

in 1636 and prepared the first code of laws for the Connecticut colony.

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  • New England families, genealogical and memorial: a record of the ..., Volume 3 edited by William Richard Cutter
  • http://books.google.com/books?id=UdEUAAAAYAAJ&pg=PA1332&lpg=PA1332&dq=Jared+Spencer+1614&source=bl&ots=q7gzXj3diO&sig=CH_fn5Nek5iWcm0Bw21ZHFvZbwY&hl=en&ei=6JGLTdvKG4TWtQO_pY2FCQ&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=3&ved=0CCAQ6AEwAjgK#v=onepage&q=Jared%20Spencer%201614&f=false
  • Pg. 1332
  • SPENCER - Four brothers named Spencer were living in New England in 1648, namely - Michael, Jared, Thomas and William. They were legatees of Sir Richard Spencer, of London, England, evidently their uncle. Michael settled first in Cambridge, then in Lynn, and owned land also on the Connecticut river. William settled in Cambridge and then went to Hartford, Connecticut. Thomas lived in Cambridge and Hartford.
  • (I) Ensign Jared Spencer, son of Gerrard or Jerrard Spencer, was born in Stotfold, England, and baptized April 28, 1614. He came to New England in 1632 and was made a freeman of the Massachusetts Bay Colony, . . . . . He died in 1685. His will was dated September 17, 1683, and proved in 1685. He married Hannah ___, Children: John, born at Lynn in 1638; Hannah, 1640; Alice, 1641; Mehitable, 1642; Thomas, about 1650,; Samuel, mentioned below; William; Nathaniel; Rebecca, married (first) John Kennard, and (second) John Tanner; Ruth, married Joseph Clark; Timothy.
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view all 26

William Spencer's Timeline

October 11, 1601
Stotfold, Bedfordshire, England
October 11, 1601
Stotfold, Central Bedfordshire, England, United Kingdom
October 11, 1601
St Mary's, Stotfold, Bedfordshire, England
October 11, 1601
October 11, 1601
Hartford, Hartford, Connecticut
October 11, 1601
St Mary's, Stotfold, Bedfordshire, England
October 16, 1601
Stotfield, Bedfordshire, England
Age 23
Cambridge, Middlesex, Massachusetts, United States
Age 31
Hartford, Hartford, Connecticut, United States
April 20, 1636
Age 34
Cambridge, Middlesex, Massachusetts