Here, gathered in our beloved South Dakota, are a few members of our Williamson / Mattson Clan. Charles and Luella are to be blamed (be kind, they didn't know what they were doing). We're generally a happy bunch and somewhat intelligent (notwithstanding our tenuous grasp on reality). I'm also proud to say that most of us still have our teeth.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Sir George Yeardley. Governor of Colonial Virginia. (Williamson Line)

From the Fortress of Solitude
Pleasant Grove

Hello Williamsons,
Today we meet our 9th Great Grandparents, Governor George Yeardley and his wife Temperance Flowerdew (you've got to love that name!).

We begin with the Relationship Chart:

Relationship Chart

Governor George Yeardley (1588 - 1627) and Temperance Flowerdew
your 9th great grandparents
Daughter of Governor George
Daughter of Elizabeth
Son of Mary
Son of John
Daughter of John
Son of Susanna
Son of Mathew
Son of George Matthew
to their children
Ima Della, Vinnie, Inez, Lillie Ethel, Josie Elvery, Emmett, Walter, Charles, Maurice

Creating a reputation as a leader and dedicated proponent of the successful colonization in Virginia, George Yeardley served the fledgling colony as Deputy Governor (1618-1621, 1625) and also as Governor (1626-1627), and presided over the convening of the first representative legislative assembly in North America 30 July 1619. The veteran of more than one voyage across the Atlantic, his first arrival in Jamestown was aboard the "Sea Venture." The storm-plagued journey was the basis of Shakespeare's "The Tempest," and while they left England in 1609, they were shipwrecked off Bermuda, and did not reach Jamestown until 1610.

By the time of Yeardley's arrival in Jamestown, his future wife had already beaten him to it. Temperance Flowerdew arrived in Jamestown aboard the "Falcon" in 1609, and is one of the few to survive the difficult "Starving Time" the following winter. Her family name survives in Flowerdew Hundred, one of the original "hundreds" along the James River, and the site of the first windmill on what would become American soil. Today Flowerdew Hundred is open to the public, and has a museum which contains a medallion belonging to Sir George Yeardley.

His connection to the Eastern Shore of Virginia began at least as early as 1620. That year, land there was given to Sir George Yeardley through Thomas Savage from Debedeavon, "The Laughing King." Capt. John Smith wrote that Sir George Yeardley with his company went to Accomack to his new plantation and stayed there for 6 weeks in the summer of 1620. At the time of his death, he owned 3700 acres on the Eastern Shore alone.

Yeardley was designated Deputy Governor in 1616 when Sir Thomas Dale, appointed Governor, returned to England. He returned to England late in 1617 and stayed there until he was appointed to replace Samuel Argoll as Governor and Captain-General of Virginia 18 November 1618. He was knighted 22 Nov 1618 at Newmarket, and he and wife Temperance sailed aboard the "George" 10 January 1619, arriving 19 April 1619 in Jamestown. Declining a second term, he remained in Virginia as a member of Council and served as Deputy Governor in 1625 when Wyatt returned to England. However, Yeardley was commissioned as Governor once again 4 March 1616/7. He died 13 Nov 1627 and was buried at Jamestown. Visitors today to Jamestown Island can see what is acknowledged to be his tomb in the chancel area of the Memorial Church.

His will mentioned his house in James City, his lands and houses within the island of James City and his thousand acres of land at Stanley in Warwicke River, and he owned 3700 acres on the Eastern Shore. By the time his will was written, he had already sold Flowerdew Hundred to Capt. Abraham Piersey.