Spence #2920

Patrick Spence (1634-1684)

Born in Scotland.  Arrived in Virginia prior to 1655 and

USA flag animationDorcas Youell (1635-1708)

Born in Maryland or Virginia.

Spence #2920

Not much is known of the early life or origins of Patrick Spence, the first identified member of my Spence line in America.  He was probably born in Scotland in about 1634[1], but the exact timing and circumstances of his arrival in Virginia are not known.  According to some sources, he was from Dysart, Fifeshire, Scotland, but I do not know whether or not this can be proven through existing documents.  Since there is no record of his parents in Virginia, one presumes that he was not a native of Virginia and that he arrived in Virginia prior to 1655, for it was in that year in Westmoreland County, Virginia, that Patrick married Dorcas Youell, the daughter of Thomas Youell (1618-1655) and Ann Sturman (1618-1670).  In the records of Westmoreland County, Patrick is referred to as a Planter, and his name appears in connection with several wills and land transactions

The children of Patrick Spence and Dorcas Youell are listed as follows:

  1. Alexander, born about 1656 and died before before 30 Aug 1704, when his will was proved in Westmoreland County, Virginia.  In his will he mentions son Patrick and daughters Mary, Dorcas and Elizabeth, along with his wife (to whom he bequeath[ed] nothing… only allowing her now wearing apparel for her parrapharnalia).
  2. Patrick Spence, born about 1658 and died about 1695.
  3. Thomas, born about 1660 and died after 6 Feb 1693[2].
  4. Elizabeth, born about 1660 and died before 6 Feb 1693[3].  She married John Sturman (1650-1723), the grandson of Thomas Sturman and Ann Porter[4].
  5. Eleanor, born about 1664 and married Andrew Monroe (1641-1714), the son of Andrew Monroe (1625-1668), immigrant
  6. John, born about 1665 and died after 6 Feb 1693[5]

The will of Dorcas Youell (Spence) was dated 25 Oct 1708 and proved 24 Nov 1708 in Cople Parish, Westmoreland County, Virginia.  Many family relationships can be identified through this document.  In her will she states that she has 13 grandchildren and names:

grandson Patrick Spence, son and heir of Alexander (deceased), to whom she gave 2 negroes, old Bess and young Betty; grandson Patrick, son of Patrick Spence, deceased, to whom she gave negro Prince; Dorcas Sanford, daughter to my eldest daughter Elizabeth Sturman, to whom she gave negroes
 Mingo and Pegg

Other grandchildren have been identified through the will of John Jordan, the second husband of Dorcas Youell (Spence), which was dated 6 Feb 1693/4 and proved in Westmoreland County, Virginia on 27 Jan 1696/7

…Unto my loving son Alexander Spence’s daughter Dorcas one Negroe boy Dick… Unto my loving son Patrick Spence his son Partrick one Negroe boy Baker… Unto my loving daughter Elinor Munro’s daughter Elizabeth one Negroe Sue… Unto my son John Spence £25 sterling which I have in England in Mr. William Briscoe’s executors’ or administrators’ hands or in Mr. John Scott’s hand, to purchase John a Negro and to no other use, the said Negro to be delivered unto John at the day of his marriage… Unto my son Thomas Spence my two Negroes Mingo and Pegg at the day of his marriage, and ten head of cattle and three sows and two beds, a feather bed and a flock bed with covering suitable. If the said John or Thomas should dye without issue then whatsoever is above bequeated unto them, the survivor of the two to have… Unto my God daughter Dorcas Sturman 5000 pounds of tobacco to be paid her either in tobacco or goods within a year or two after her marriage…  Unto my said sons Alexander and Partrick after my wife’s decease the stock of hoggs which are remaining at the forrest plantation, also a cow… and a good ring a piece to the value of twenty shillings each ring. No advantage of survivorship shall be taken by either Alexr. or Partrick if either should die before my wife.  The ring be delivered unto my said sons as soon as they can be acquired, before the decease of my wife. Unto my sons John Sturman, Andrew Munro and George Weedon each a gold ring of fifteen shillings value… My said sone Alexander have the Negro Bess after my wife’s decease according to his own father’s will… Unto Elizabeth Sturman one cow at the day of marriage.  My loveing wife executrix. My sones Alexander and Partrick trustees. Signed by John Jordon. Wit: William Thompson, John Wright, John Linton

It is evident that the grandchildren who are specifically mentioned in the wills are the issue of the deceased children of Patrick Spence and Dorcas Youell (Spence), including their deceased son Patrick and their grandson Patrick

In about 1686 in Westmoreland County, Virginia, Patrick Spence (1658-1695), the son of Patrick Spence and Dorcas Youell,  married Penelope Youell (1st cousins to each other, since Patrick’s mother and Penelope’s father her siblings; i.e. offspring of Thomas Youell and Ann Sturman).  Her date of birth is not known with certainty, but a date of about 1670 or a little later would be consistent with the birth dates of her mother (1654) and her son Patrick (1693)

In 1722, Patrick Spence (1693-1740), the son of Patrick Spence and Penelope Youell, married Jemima Pope, the daughter of Lawrence Pope and Jemima WaddyJemima Pope was born between about 1702-08 and died 30 Sep 1755, both in Westmoreland County, Virginia.  The daughter of Patrick Spence and Jemima Pope is Jemima Spence, born in about 1730 in Westmoreland County, Virginia and died at Bryan Station, Kentucky (at that time still a part of Virginia) in 1786.

In about 1750, Jemima Spence married James Suggett, the son of James Suggett and Mary Frances Bayless, who was born 18 Apr 1722 in Virginia and died at Bryan Station, Kentucky (at the time still a part of Virginia) in 1786.  The lineage of Jemima Spence and James Suggett is continued under the heading of John Suggett (1645-1690).


[1] Age is based on testimony sworn to the court on 29 Apr 1674, in which Patrick gives his age: Mr. Patrick Spence… 40 years or thereabouts:  Being in Maryland in Chew’s [?] Bay in the County of St. Maries in 1669 I did see Robt. Drewry of the same county signe a bill of 1468 pounds of tobacco to David Norrey which bill I did write and am a witnesse to the bill… 29 Apr [1674]. Sworn in Court by Patrick Spence.

[2] Thomas is mentioned on this date in the will of his step-father, John Jordan.

[3] Elizabeth is mentioned on this date in the will of her step-father, John Jordan.

[4] My 11th g-grandparents, discussed under their own heading.

[5] John is mentioned on this date in the will of his step-father, John Jordan.


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