Spence Family
Navarro County, Texas


Biography Index



Spence Family Picture, Fall 1906

Front row: L to R

1. David Spence, b. 19 Nov 1840, d. 28 Apr 1907

2. Elizabeth (Bettie) Dawson Spence, b. 27 Nov 1846, d. 13 Jan 1929

3. Sallie Spence, b. 20 Dec 1867, d. 4 Apr 1945


Back row: L to R

1. Ione Spence Whitener, b. 27 Aug 1886, d. 27 Apr 1965

2. Maggie Spence Boyd, b. 3 Feb 1889, d. 23 Jun 1969, illegitimate daughter of Annie Spence

3. Annie Spence, b. 14 Nov 1870, d. 18 Mar 1936

4. Addie (Billy) Spence, b. 8 Mar 1897, d. 20 Mar 1938, illegitimate daughter of Mary Zeanon

5. Alvin (Bud) Spence, b. 20 Jan 1880, d. 9 Feb 1944

6. Mary Spence Zeanon, b. 18 Jul 1877, d. 14 Mar 1942

7. baby Lucille Zeanon, b. 17 Jun 1906, d. 13 Jun 1932

8. Amanda Spence Frazier Hubbard, b. 2 Feb 1874, d. 14 Mar 1951

not pictured, David Almer Spence, b. 30 Oct 1882, d. 20 Sep 1888

Death of David W. Spence
The Dawson Herald
April 1907

David W. Spence was born in Cask County, Ill., November 19, 1840, moved to Texas in 1850, was married to Miss Bettie Dawson June 28, 1866, and departed this life at his home two miles north of Dawson, April 28, 1907.

Uncle Dave, as he was often called, did not unite with any church, but lived a harmless life and was known as an honest and truthful man and was never known to say a harmful word unjustly about anyone.

While Uncle Dave was poor and did not have a home here we believe that he is rich now, as Christ has gone on before to prepare a home for him.

Some two weeks ago before his death he said that he was not afraid to die and asked several of his friends to meet him some sweet day.

The funeral services were conducted by Rev. Henry Francis, pastor of the Cumberland Presbyterian Church, at the grave where a large number had gathered to pay a last tribute of respect to the memory of a true and honest citizen of the community.  After which he was laid to rest beneath the soil to await the resurrection morning.

He leaves a wife and six children to mourn the loss of a true husband and father.  The entire community extends sympathy to the bereaved family.


Bettie (Dawson) Spence

Mrs. Bettie Spence
The Dawson Herald
January 18, 1929
Vol. 21, No. 27, page 4, Col 2

In the Spring Hill community, at 5 a.m. Sunday, Jan. 13, 1929, Mrs. Bettie Spence passed into the great beyond.  For something like five years she has practically been an invalid, but has borne her afflictions with great fortitude, and ever had a hopeful way of looking for better times.

Bettie Dawson was born in Robertson County, Texas, Nov. 27, 1846.  While a tiny baby, her father, Brit Dawson, moved to this county, while yet this country was full of Indians.  Here at the old Dawson home, just east of town, Bettie grew to young womanhood.  At the age of twenty years she was married to David W. Spence.  To this union seven children, five girls and two boys were born.  Save one son, the entire family of six remain to mourn her death.  Mrs. Spence’s husband died about twenty years ago, but with a marvelous filial love, the children have loved and cared for their mother.  Her entire life has been spent in and around the Dawson community, and it is well said that those who knew her best love her most.

The following children survive:  Bud Spence, Sallie Spence, Annie Spence, Mrs. Mary Zeanon, Mrs. Lee Hubbard and Mrs. Ione Whitner.

The funeral service was held at the Cumberland Presbyterian church Monday morning at 10 o’clock, conducted by Pastor F.A. Brown, after which burial took place in the Dawson cemetery.

Notes:  Bettie Spence was the youngest of three children of Britton and Elizabeth Walker Dawson.  It’s believed that Bettie’s mother, Elizabeth, died during or shortly after her birth.  Her sister Sarah Dawson Rogers and brother William H. Dawson (the first white child born in Dawson) were also long time residents of the Dawson community.

Fort Worth Lady Buried Here Thursday
The Dawson Herald
March 1936

The body of Annie Spence who died at the home of her daughter in Fort Worth at 3 o’clock p.m., March 18, was brought here for burial Thursday of last week, the funeral service being held at the Cumberland Presbyterian Church at 2 o’clock, conducted by Rev. A.A. Collins.  Interment was made in the Dawson cemetery.

She had lived in this vicinity practically all her life up to the last year or two, since which time she has resided with her daughter in Fort Worth.  In early life she was converted and joined the Cumberland Presbyterian Church, and when she realized her life was nearing the end, expressed her readiness to go.  She is survived by one daughter, Mrs. Maggie Boyd of Forth Worth, four sisters, and one brother of Dawson.

Notes:  Second child of David and Bettie Spence, Annie Spence was born 14 Nov 1870, died 18 March 1936.  She never married.

Bud Spence Died Suddenly Early Wednesday Morning
The Dawson Herald
February 1944

Bud Spence died suddenly at about six o’clock Wednesday morning at his home at the Joseph Hagle place just north of town.  Tuesday he was a well as usual, but became sick about twelve o’clock and steadily grew worse until death.

Mr. Spence is an old resident of this vicinity, having spent practically all of his life here.  He is survived by three sisters, two of whom made their home with him.

The funeral service will be held this (Thursday) afternoon at 2:30 o’clock at the residence, conducted by Rev. E.A. Kessler.  Burial in Dawson cemetery.

Notes:  Fifth child of David and Bettie Spence, Alvin Henry (Bud) Spence was born 20 Jan 1880, died 09 Feb 1944.  He never married.

Mrs. Sallie Spence Died Early Wednesday Morning
The Dawson Herald
April 1945

Miss Sallie Spence died in the P. & S. Hospital in Corsicana Tuesday morning about three o’clock, after having been carried there for treatment recently.  The body was returned to Dawson early Tuesday by local undertakers Wolfe & Dobson, and the funeral service will be held this Thursday morning at 11 o’clock, at the Cumberland Presbyterian church, conducted by Rev. Joe P. Smith, with burial in the Dawson cemetery.

Miss Spence had reached the age of seventy-seven years and had spent most of her life in the vicinity of Dawson.  She is survived by two sisters.

Notes:  First child of David and Bettie Spence, Sallie Spence was born 20 Dec 1867, died 04 April 1945.  She never married.

Miss Lucile Zeanon Passed Away Monday
Dawson Herald
June 1932

Miss Lucile Zeanon, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. E. O. Zeanon, died Monday morning at 3 o’clock at her home here, after an illness of several months duration, the last weeks of which time she was very sick.

Miss Lucile had reached the age of twenty five years, eleven months, and twenty eight days.  Up to some two years ago she had been a resident of Hubbard, but during her residence here, she had made a host of friends. She was converted and joined the Presbyterian church at Hubbard when eight years of age and held membership in that church at the time of her death.  She possessed a happy disposition and was held in the highest esteem by all who knew her.  Her passing away will not only be keenly felt by her family but by many friends as well.

The funeral service was conducted at the Cumberland Presbyterian church Monday afternoon at four o’clock, conducted by Revs. B. T. Tyree, F. O. Waddill, H. D. Jeffcoat, Robert Evans, W. H. McCulloch, Tom Allmon, and D. M. Fullerton, after which the body was laid to rest in the Dawson cemetery.  The high esteem in which Miss Lucile was held was attested by the beautiful floral offering and the large number, many from a distance, who were present at the funeral to pay a last sad tribute.

Notes:  Child of E. Oscar and Mary Spence Zeanon, born 17 June 1906, died 13 June 1932.  At the time of her death Lucile Zeanon was either divorced or separated from William C. Eversole, whom she married 6 March 1923.


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Edward L. Williams & Barbara Knox