Sgt Thomas Spencer

Sgt Thomas Spencer

Stotfold, Central Bedfordshire Unitary Authority, Bedfordshire, England
Death 11 Sep 1687 (aged 80)
Hartford, Hartford County, Connecticut, USA
Burial Hartford, Hartford County, Connecticut, USA
Memorial ID 40275474 · View Source
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Sgt. Thomas,1 Spencer, s. of Gerard (q.v. Gerrard),A Spencer and Alice Whitbred (q.v. Whitbread), bapt. Mar. 29, 1607 at Stotfold, Bedfordshire, Eng. He d. testate Sept. 11, 1687 at Hartford, Conn., Æ 81.

Any claim that Thomas, along with his three Spencer brothers, arrived on one of the ships known as the "Winthrop Fleet" and specifically the "Mary & John" is not true, as neither of the four brothers arrived at New England prior to 1631. The term "Winthrop Fleet" applies only to those who arrived on one of the ships that sailed by the Spring of 1630 and were part of Gov. John Winthrop's 1630 Mass. Bay Company fleet.

Sgt. Thomas first settled at Cambridge, Mass. where in 1633 he received a grant of a homelot, was made a freeman of the Mass. Bay May 14, 1634 (implying he had joined the Cambridge church), and received an additional grant of land at Cambridge in 1635. He removed to Hartford, Conn. by 1639 where he was a member of the Hartford First Church and his name is on the Hartford Founders Monument. In 1639 his homelot was on the east side of what was later Main St. near the junction of Windsor Street. According to the 1640 replicated map of Hartford, his lot adjoined the south side of his older brother William's lot. He served in the 1637 Pequot Indian War and in 1650 was elected Sergeant of Hartford's train(ing) band. In 1671 he received a grant of 60 acres "for his good service in the country." His will dated Sept. 9, 1686 at Hartford was proved Oct. 26, 1687.

At Sgt. Thomas Spencer's death, the only cemetery within the then limits of Hartford was the one adjoining the Hartford 1st Church, now known as Hartford's Ancient Cemetery, where he was undoubtedly interred. The Hale Connecticut Cemetery Database inappropriately infers that Sgt. Thomas was interred at Suffield, Conn. due to a lack of genealogical understanding by the person who in the 1930s inventoried the cenotaph monument of the Suffield descendants of Corp. Thomas,2 Spencer Jr. (Sgt. Thomas,1). At the time of Sgt. Thomas Spencer's death at Hartford, Suffield was barely a settled town of Mass., and did not secede from Mass. and become part of Conn. until 1749.

On an unknown date after Nov. 2, 1634, Thomas m. 1) Ann Derifield (q.v. Doryfall, etc.), sister of Barnabas Derifield of Braintree, Mass. She, "aged 24 yeeres," departed in late April 1634 aboard the Elizabeth of Ipswich (Mr. William Edwards, Master) and was admitted to the Boston Church Nov. 2, 1634 as "Ann Derifall, our brother Wm. Coddington's maid servant." Assuming Ann was obligated to serve Coddington for a minimum of three years and could not marry while in his service, she and Thomas Spencer likely m. not earlier than late 1637, which is complemented by the earliest likely date of birth of her first child, son Obadiah in circa 1638. They had the following three known children. Based on the recorded age at death of Samuel, the birth order of Thomas' children by Ann is different than normally written:

• i. Obadiah Spencer (called eldest son in his father's will), b. circa 1638, d. testate at Hartford betw. May 2 and May 6, 1712 (date of codicil to his June 22, 1709 will; date of invt.); m. circa 1666 at Hartford, Mary Disborough (q.v. Desbrough), who d. before Obadiah wrote his will in June 1709, dau. of Nicholas Disborough and Mary Bronson, b. circa 1641 at Hartford. Seven children of the family.

• ii. Samuel Spencer, b. circa 1639, d. Jan. 8, 1726/7 at Windham, Conn., "age about 88" [i.e., Ætatis 88]; m. Sarah ---, who d. at Windham Apr. 15, 1733, "age about 73." Four children of the family.

• iii. Corp. Thomas Spencer, Jr., b. circa 1641, d. July 23, 1689 at Suffield (age not stated), until 1749 part of Hampshire County, Mass., but now in Conn.; m. Esther Andrews, dau. of William Andrews and Abigail Graves, b. Sept. 1641 at Hartford. She d. Mar. 6, 1697/8 at Suffield, Mass, now in Conn. Six known children of the family.

On Sept. 11, 1645 at Hartford, Thomas m. 2) Sarah Bearding, daughter of Nathaniel Bearding. Based on her father Nathaniel's will dated Jan. 7, 1673/4 at Hartford, Sarah may have been dead by the latter date. She certainly d. before Sept. 9, 1686, the date Sgt. Thomas wrote his will. Their children were:

• iv. Sarah Spencer, b. circa 1646, d. Oct. 24, 1712 at Suffield, Mass.; m. Sgt. Thomas Huxley of Hartford, Conn. who d. July 21, 1721 at Suffield, Mass.

• v. Elizabeth Spencer, bapt. Mar. 26, 1648 at Hartford (1st Ch.), d. aft. Feb. 5, 1711/2; m. Samuel Andrews, brother of her half-brother Thomas Spencer's wife Esther, b. Oct. 20, 1645 at Hartford. He d. testate at Hartford betw. Jan. 1 and 29, 1711/2 (date of will, date of invt.). Six children of the family.

• vi. Jared Spencer, b. circa 1650-51, d. testate at Hartford betw. Mar. 15 and Apr 4, 1712 (date of will, date on invt.); m. Dec. 22, 1680 at Hartford, Hannah Pratt, dau. of John Pratt of Hartford, b. there Nov. 25, 1658. She d. at Hartford Oct. 22, 1692. Nine children of the family.

• vii. Hannah Spencer, b. Apr. 15, 1653, m. (1) George Sexton, Jr. and 2) Nov. 29, 1698 at Hartford (1st Ch. Rec.) as his 3rd wife, the immigrant Daniel Brainerd, widower of Hannah's 1st cousin Hannah2 Spencer (Ens. Gerard,1 Gerard,A) of Haddam.

• viii. Mary Spencer, b. May 18, 1655, d. Nov. 4, 1690 at Westfield, Mass.; m. Oct. 7, 1675 at Westfield as his 2nd wife, Thomas Roote, s. of John Roote, b. 1648 at Farmington, Conn. He d. Aug. 16, 1709 at Westfield, Mass. Both are interred with common gravestone at Somers, Conn. Seven children of the marriage recorded at Westfield, Mass.

• ix. Martha Spencer, b. Mar. 19, 1657/8, d. at Hartford aft. 1698 but before Feb. 1703/4; m. circa 1677 at Hartford, Andrew Benton, Jr., s. of Andrew Benton and Hannah Stocking, bapt. Aug. 12, 1653 at Milford, Conn. He d. intestate and insolvent Feb. 5, 1703/4 at Hartford. Nine children of the family.

Edited and expanded 12/14/2015

Family Members


  • Maintained by: Don Blauvelt
  • Originally Created by: V. Nareen Lake
  • Added: 4 Aug 2009
  • Find a Grave Memorial 40275474
  • Dana Ribble
  • Find a Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Sgt Thomas Spencer (29 Mar 1607–11 Sep 1687), Find a Grave Memorial no. 40275474, citing Ancient Burying Ground, Hartford, Hartford County, Connecticut, USA ; Maintained by Don Blauvelt (contributor 46932939) .