This page will contain the memoirs of a number of family members. It is still under construction.
This is a letter written by my great-great-grandmother Margaretta Deaderick
Wendel Spence, wife of Joseph Spence, to her grandchildren sometime between
June 1894 and May 1895. It begins with her marriage in 1853 and tells about
her family life in Murphreesboro, Tennessee, and the family's move to Texas
in horse-drawn wagons.
Does anyone know of the existence of one of the original hand-written manuscripts of this letter? They would have been passed down through T. R. Spence, Virginia, or one of their cousins -- the grandchildren to whom Margaretta wrote the letter. If anyone has one of these, I would very much like to have a good quality color scan of it. The link below is to a scanned image of a copy typed by T. R. Spence about 70 years ago. It is OCR scanned (although with numerous scanning errors), so you can search it or copy from it.
Letter to My Grandchildren   (Searchable PDF, 1.1MB)
After you have read the letter be sure and read this narrative of a slave owned by Joseph and Margaretta Spence, recorded by Alfred E. Menn in an unpublished book, Slave Narratives, 1937, held at the Austin Public Library, Austin, Texas.
I have in my possession a rather poor quality typed edition of the narrative. I did my best to decipher it, and here offer a retyped manuscript in PDF format.
Narrative of a Slave Owned by Joseph Spence  (Text PDF, 113KB)
Here are a marvelous series of letters between Sidney Green Davidson and his
wife Mary Elizabeth Kuykendall Davidson written in 1861. Sidney is in
Austin when the state legislature votes to secede from the Union. He joins
the Confederate Army and heads for the frontier where the Confederate Army
takes control of the U. S. Army forts used to protect the white settlers
from the Indians. There he is commissioned a captain. Meanwhile, back
home, Mary is taking care of the home and family including their daughter
Laura who will later marry George E. Baugh. This makes Sydney and Mary my
Sidney and Mary keep looking forward to the time when Sidney will get his next leave and be able to come home, but it keeps getting postponed. Sidney writes of the military life and about scouting parties sent out to fight the Indians. Will he ever get his leave and that well-deserved visit with his wife? You will have to read the letters to find out.
The copy linked to below is a PDF image of a typed copy of the letters by Mary Nichols. It has been OCR scanned so you can search it or copy from it.
Letters between Sidney Green Davidson and his wife Mary Elizabeth Kuykendall Davidson   (Searchable PDF, 1.9MB)
These are the memoirs of my grandfather Alvin A. Bush, b. Jan. 22, 1889,
father of Sarah Bush Spence who married George Baugh Spence. They are in
two parts, "Early Days in Denton" and "My Eldorado Days", and cover the
period from his birth to 1929 when he left Eldorado.
The copies linked to below are PDF images of typed copies of the memoirs in my possession. They have been OCR scanned so you can search them or copy from them.
Early Days in Denton   (Searchable PDF, 973KB)
My Eldorado Days   (Searchable PDF, 340KB)
These are the memoirs of my grandfather Thomas Reese Spence, b. Sept. 11,
1895, which he recorded Nov. 10, 1972, about his early life in College
Station, Texas. It contains interesting information about the early years
of Texas A & M University.
The original sound recording in MP3 format is too large for this web site, but can be obtained by emailing David@Spence-Family.org. Here is a transcript in PDF format.
Thomas Reese Spence Memoir   (Text PDF, 93KB)
Page Last Updated: February 6, 2011