||William Spencer migrated to New England during the Puritan Great Migration (1620-1640).|
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William Spencer, son of Gerard and Alice (Whitbread) Spencer was baptized 11 Oct 1601, at Stotfold, Bedfordshire, England.
He immigrated to New England about 1631, settled in Cambridge, Massachusetts, then removed to Hartford, Connecticut in 1639. His name can be found on the Hartford Founders Monument. He was brother to three other immigrants Thomas Spencer of Cambridge and Hartford, Michael Spencer and Gerard Spencer of Lynn.
William became a freeman of the Massachusetts Bay Colony 4 March 1632/3. This gave him the right to vote and to hold office. He was the Deputy from Cambridge to the General Court eight times between 9 May 1632 and 12 March 1637/8. In April 1637 he was listed as Lieut. Spencer. In addition to serving as Lt. of the Cambridge trainband, William was a Charter member of the Ancient and honorable Artillery Company.Governments can't run without committees. William served on several Colony committees
He was the town clerk at Cambridge 1632-1635, and town selectman 23 November 1635. A committee was appointed to "survey the town lands and enter [mutilated] a book appointed for that purpose" 3 Feb 1634/5, and on 27 Oct 1636 "Newe Towne presented a book of their records under the hands of Will Andrews, constable, John Beniamin, & Will Spencer." He and George Steele measured the undivided lands and alloted portions in 1635.
The "Town Records of Cambridge" and the Cambridge Land Inventory show that William owned land and a house, garden, etc. in the years between 1633 and 1638
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In Hartford, William had a house, outhouses, yards and gardens, and about 98 acres in various parcels. He had lots 48 and 88 on the map.
William continued public service after his move to Hartford. He was Deputy for Hartford to the Connecticut General Court five sessions in a row starting 11 April 1639 and ending shortly before his death, 9 April 1640. In addition, he was the surveyor of armor and other military provisions for Hartford in 1639.
"A noate of the mynd and Will of Williã Spenser for pr the 4th of May, 1640" Basically the will states that his wife Agnes should get one third, his son Samuel on third, and his daughters Sarah and Elizabeth one third. It refers to some property that his wife might receive and names overseers "Cosen Mathew Allen, my brother John Pratt and John Taylcoate. These last two items were keys to the identity of Agnes as Agnes Harris. His will and inventory (£67 moveables plus real estate, debts owed and debts due) are found in the Colony Records.
Information on William Spencers. But, are they William the immigrant? There really is nothing to connect these odd bits. They are not mentioned by Anderson.
A William Spencer b. April 1601 was registered at the Merchant Taylor's School 1611/2
"According to some references, William Spencer was a graduate of Trinity College, Cambridge, England coming to New England with friends of John Winthrop in 1631; they settled in Cambridge. In 1633 he may have then returned to bring his wife and came with her in the ship "Mary and John" (according to page 203 Wm. R. Cutter's Genealogy and History of Connecticut (Vol. 3))"
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