Ancestral Family Topic 1868

 1868   George Abney (1613-1661)
Pedigree Chart 08

George Abney, in his own words
If he could speak to us today, George Abney might describe his life as follows.

Néel de Aubigné who accompanied William “The Conqueror” to England from his ancestral home 25 miles north of Cherbourg, France, was my ancestor.
I was baptized at St. Mary’s, Leicester, England, 11 July 1613, the son of Paul Abney and Mary Brokesby. My wife, Bathshua, and I were the parents Abraham Abney who died in England, and Paul Abney and Dennett Abney, of Virginia.
They buried me in the chancel of St. Mary’s on 3 May 1661. Since I left no will, the Prerogative Court of Canterbury granted my widow administration of my estate May 1661.
Bathshua married second Rev. Joseph Lee (1620-1694), the rector of Cotesbach, County of Leicester, at St. Mary de Castro in Leicester, 7 February 1663/4. Their only child, little Bathshua Lee, died before she was two months old.
After making her will in the borough of Leicester 8 January 1706/7, Bathshua lived another five years and was buried at St. Mary de Castro 31 August 1712. They proved her will the next month, 22 September 1712. She left an estate of just £9.13.2

Since George married during the English Civil War, we do not have a record of the surname or parents of Bathshua.

Abney origins
Still visible today are the foundation walls of Aubigné, an ancient chateau about 25 miles from Cherbourg, France, near Periers. The parish of Aubigné that includes churches St. Martin and St. Christopher surrounds it. Its overlord, Néel de Aubigné, accompanied William the Conqueror to England and in return for his services received land in two or 3 English counties including Derby. The name evolved from de Aubigné to de Aubigny, to de Abeney, and finally Abney about 1500.
About 1400 John de Abeney married the eldest daughter and coheir of William de Ingewardby, of Wiveleslie in Derbyshire, and to him fell Wiveleslie Hall, now called Willesley Hall. A chapel stands at Willesley Hall and here, it is said, John and his wife lay buried. Two alabaster sepulchral slabs in the floor of the chancel cover the remains of two of his descendants: John Abney and his wife, Mary, and George Abney and his wife, Ellene. Latin inscriptions silently declare that John died 1 Dec. 1505, George on 1 March 1578/9, and Ellene on 3 Dec. 1571. His wife was Ellene Wolsely, the daughter of John de Wolsely, Staffordshire.

Pedigree Chart 11
George Abney
11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21
George Abney (- 1578)
Edmund Abney (- 1604)
John de Wolseley
Ellene (-1571)
Paul Abney (-1634)
Katherine Ludlam
George Abney (1613-1661)
George Brokesby
Mary Brokesby

Ellene and George Abney had 3 sons.
James Abney (-1620) married Mary Milward, daughter of Henry Milward of Dovebridge, County of Stafford. From them descended Sir Edward Abney (-1727), lawyer and Member of Parliament; Sir Thomas Abney (-1721), Lord Mayor of London, Member of Parliament, and a founder of the Bank of England; and Judge Thomas Abney (-1750) of the Court of Common Pleas.
Robert Abney (-1602) married Antheria Howe, daughter of Robert Howe of Hertfordshire.
Edmund Abney (-1604) married Katherine Ludlam of Leicester. He is buried in the chancel of St. Mary’s at Leicester and his will was probated in the Prerogative Court of Canterbury. Edmund and Katherine had two sons.
Paul Abney (-1634) married Mary Brokesby, daughter of George Brokesby of Stapleford, County of Leicester. He is buried in the chancel of St. Mary’s and his will and inventory are in the District Registry of the High Court of Leicester. They had two sons. George Abney is the subject of this Family Topic. Philip Abney was baptized 23 Nov. 1623 and married Anne. Their son, John Abney was mayor in 1700 and his son, Rev. John Abney (-1744) was Vicar of Syston where a monument to his memory stands.
Dennett Abney (-1669) married 1st Ann Gladwin, daughter of Roger Gladwin of Lincoln County, and 2nd, Joane Slater. He was mayor in 1640 and 1660 and outlived his children.

Rev. Joseph Lee
Rev. Joseph Lee, Bathshua’s 2nd husband, was a son of Joseph Lee (27 Dec. 1759) and Anne Twigden (1593-1650). Like his father, Joseph was a graduate of Oxford University, matriculating at Oriel College 16 March 1637/8. The elder Joseph was a son of Thomas Lee, rector of Catthorpe. The younger Joseph married 1st Anne about 1645 and they were the parents of 6 known children. Their son John Lee was likely the man of this name who listed Dennett Abney among his headrights when he secured a patent to 906 acres in Nansemond County in 1684. 
Rev. Joseph and Mrs. Bathshua Lee were the parents of only one known child. The birth of Bathshua Lee is recorded twice in the Parish Register of St. Mary’s. She was born either 28 Dec. 1664 or 19 Jan. 1664/5. Little Bathshua was dead by 28 March 1665 when the churchwardens of St. Mary’s Parish paid 2 shillings for “laying down Mr. Lee’s child’s Gravestone.”
Among those mentioned in the will of Joseph Lee was Abraham Abney who was to have received £100. Yet as he was then dead, they paid his legacy to his mother, Bathshua (will dated 8 June 1694 and proved 27 June 1694).

Will of Bathshua Lee
Bathshua’s will of 8 Jan. 1706/7 named as her executor widow Anne Orton of Leicester and Anne’s sons, William Orton. The will of her husband, Joseph, had identified William Orton as a “mercer,” or textile dealer.

Will of Bathshua Lee
8 January 1706/7
In the Name of God Amen. I Bathshua Lee of the Burough of Leicester in the County of Leic., widdow being weak in Body but of sound and perfect mind and memory thanks be to God. Yet considering the nessity of my naturall life doe make and ordaine this to be my last Will and Testament in manner and forms following. That is today I first give and bequeath my Soul into the hands of Almighty God my Creator hoping to be saved by and through the alone meritts of Jesus Christ my Savious and Redeemer And my Body I committ to the Earth from whence itt came to be buryed in a decent manner att the discretion of my Executors hereinafter named And as touching that worldy Estate which God of his Goodness had bestowed upone me I dispose thereof as follows.
In primis. I give and bequeath unto m. Edmund Spencer of the said Burough of Leicester, That my Booke being the Third Volume of Sermons of the late Reverend Thomas Manton Dr. in Devinity.
Item. I give and bequeath unto Anne Orton of the Burrough aforesaid widdow and William Orton her son five shillings apiece.
Item. I give and bequeath All the rest and residue of my goods and Chattles and personal Estate whatsoever after all my debts and funeral Expenses are paid and dischared there of if any shall then remaine unto my Son Dannett Abney. And I hereby make nominate and appoint the said Anne Orton and William Orton the Joint Executors of this my last will and Textaments, revoking all forms & Writts by me ever made. In Witness whereof I the said Bathsua Lee have heretofore sett my hand and Seale thie Eighth day of January Ann Dom 1706.

Descendants of George Abney
Information about the children of George Abney, their descendants, and allied families previously found at is now available as Southside Virginia Genealogies. Learn more 
Names found in this topic include the following.
 Lt. Paul Abney (1653-c.1696),  
Mary Lee,  
George Abney,  Thomas East Sr.,  Unity (—) Abney,  Robert Lee,  Alexander Robertson,  
Abraham Abney,   Dennett Abney,   Mattox Mayes,   Charles Harraway,  
Nathaniel Barksdale,   James Norell Sr.,  William Hill,   David George,  
Dennett Abney,  James Hunt,  
Thomas Spraggins,   
Cassandra (—) Abney,  Thomas Hill,   James Hill,   Elizabeth Terry,  Abraham Abney,   
Thomas Burton,  Samuel Cobbs,   John LeNeve,   
Dennett Abney,  
Samuel Abney,  Capt. Spraggins,  James Norell Jr.,  Thomas Spraggins,   Mary (—) Abney,  
Samuel Abney,  
William Abney,  William Glass,  Charles Harraway,  
Mary Clark,  Elizabeth Burnham,  
Walter Abney,  Susan Brooks,  
John Abney,  John Lark,  Rachel Blakey,  Susanna Pope,  Edmond Spearman,  
Henry M. Abney,  Jonathon Abney,  Ira Abney,  
Lark Abney,  
Charlotte Abney,  O’Neal,  
Polly Abney,  
Jacob P. Abney,  
Sarah J.M. Abney,  
Ann Abney,  
William Abney,  
Michael Abney,  
Capt. Nathaniel Abney,  Isabella Madison,  John Madison,  Isabella Todd,  
Sarah Abney,  Matthew Wills,  Dr. John Bolger,  
John Abney,  Isabella Pope,  
Martha Abney,  Atkinson,  
Elizabeth Abney,  Eskridge,  
Nancy Abney,  Capt. William Spraggins,  
Lydia Abney,  Charles Carson,  
Joel Abney,  Elizabeth Pope,  
Azariah Abney,  Mary Pope,  
James Abney,  Micah Abney,  
Anna Abney,  
Anna Abney,  Maj. William Fluker,  
Isabella Abney,  
Dorcas Abney,  Mattox Mayes,  
William Mayes,  Mary Mattox,  George Abney,   James Hunt,  William Fuqua,  
Richard Booker,  Richard Davis,  Joseph Mayes,  
John Peterson,  
John Stewart,  Lucy Valentine,  Nanny Valentine,  Sarah Valentine,  George Abney,   
Nathaniel Spraggins,  Thomas Spraggins,   
Walter Coles,  
James Norrell Sr.,  
William Hill,   
Nathaniel Barksdale,   
Abney Mayes,  Elizabeth —,  
William Mayes,  Olive (—) Mayes,  
Samuel Mayes,  Nancy (—) Mayes,  Dennett Hill Mayes,  
Sarah Mayes,  
Tabitha Mayes,  Joshua Dean,   
Dennett Hill,  Martha (—) Hill,  
Dorcas Hill,  
William Hill,  
Lethey Hill,  
Samuel Hill,  
 Dennett Abney (1659-1733),  
 Abraham Abney (-1689),  

This family topic includes the following notable individuals.
European Notables
Sir Edward Abney Member of Parliament Sir Thomas Abney Member of Parliament

Soldiers of colonial and American wars
William Abney - Revolutionary War  

Selected sources
Boddie, John Bennett. “Abney and Madison of Virginia and South Carolina.” Historical Southern Families, 21:206-210. • Descendants of Nathaniel Abney.
Mackenzie, George Norbury LL.B., ed., Vol. 2 of Colonial Families of the United States of America. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc., 1995: 2-7. • Historical background on George Abney.
Thompson, Neil D. “Common Roots for the Lees of Virginia? Colonel Richard of Northumberland and John of Nansemond.” National Genealogical Society Quarterly. 90:211-223 (2002). • Includes the family of Rev. Joseph Lee who married Bathshua, the widow of George Abney.
“Update: Common Roots for the Lees of Virginia?” National Genealogical Society Quarterly. 91:182 (2003). • Additional information Rev. Joseph Lee who married Bathshua, the widow of George Abney.

This topic, which represents .18% of all the family history material at, includes 68 citations and the names of 165 individuals.
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