BEF 16 APR 1609 - London, England
AUG 1657 - Lynnhaven Parish, Lower Norfolk, VA
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Sarah Offley immigrated from England to Virginia about 1627 after marrying Adam Thorowgood in London.
Sarah married Adam Thorowgood on July 18th, 1627 at Saint Anne's Church, Blackfriars, London. Adam had left England for Virginia in 1621 as an indentured servant. After his bond was released Adam quickly rose to prominence in the Colony. He purchased lands and was also given many patents for paying for transport of other colonists. In 1637 Adam received 5,350 acres in the area that is now the City of Virginia Beach, VA for the transport of himself, his wife and 105 other people between 1628 and 1634.
In Virginia Sarah and Adam had four children, three daughters and a son. She and Adam are credited with settling Elizabeth City, Lower Norfolk and Princess Anne counties. Today this area is know as the City of Virginia Beach. Their home served as the church and courthouse in the early days of the settlement and Adam acted as a vestryman, Justice and Burgess.
Adam Thorowgood died of illness in 1640. Sarah remarried quickly to John Gookin on May 2nd, 1641. She and John had one daughter, Mary Gookin, born in 1643. After John died around 1647 Sarah married for third time to another prominent citizen of the early days of Virgina, Francis Yeardley, son of the former Governor George Yeardley. Francis died soon after their marriage and they did not have any children.
Court records show her bringing suit on several occasions: swearing out a warrant on Goody Layton for wronging her deceased husband with a "Pish;" two men for making insulting remarks to her daughter, Sarah in 1644; and just days before her death she took a tenant farmer to court for improper planting of an orchard and "ground made waste of." She was described as "beautiful and high-spirited" with a "backbone of steel and an indomitable will."
Sarah died in August of 1657. She was buried at Church Point and apparently beside her second husband. The inscription on their stone was copied down in 1819.
"Here lyeth the body of Capt. John Gooking, and also ye body of Mrs. Sarah Yardley who was wife to Capt. Adam Thoroughgood first, and Capt. John Gooking & Colonell Francis Yardley, who deceased August, 1657."
The stone, along with the rest of the parish graveyard, has now been lost to erosion.
- Dorman, John F. Adventurers of Purse and Person: Virginia, 1607-1624/5, Volume Two, Families G-P. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co, 2005. Print. Pg. 699.
- Dorman, John F. Adventurers of Purse and Person : Virginia 1607-1624/5: Volume Three Families R-Z. Baltimore, MD: Genealogical Pub. Co, 2007. Print. Pgs. 216, 326, 328, 331, 865.
- Meyer & Dorman, Adventurers of Purse & Person, Dietz Press, Richmond, VA 1987, pp.459, 607
- London Metropolitan Archives; London, England; Reference Number: P69/ANN/A/002/MS04509/001 Year: 1562-1726 Ancestry.com. London, England, Church of England Baptisms, Marriages and Burials, 1538-1812 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2010. Original data: Church of England Parish Registers, 1538-1812. London, England: London Metropolitan Archives. Images produced by permission of the City of London Corporation. The City of London gives no warranty as to the accuracy, completeness or fitness for the purpose of the information provided. Images may be used only for purposes of research, private study or education.
- Virginia. Colonial Land Office. Patents, 1623-1774.
- Norfolk Co. VA GenWeb, Thorowgood Family by Carol Middleton
- "Historical and Genealogical Notes and Queries" The Virginia Magazine of History and Biography, (Vol. 12, No. 2 (Oct., 1904), pp. 201-02) Virginia Historical Society
- Genealogies of Virginia Families From The Virginia Magazine of History and Biography Volume V. Indexed by Thomas L. Hollowak. 1981. Volume I Adams-Chiles. Page 483
- Colonial Dames of America. Chapter I, Baltimore, and Grafton Press. Ancestral Records And Portraits: a Compilation From the Archives of Chapter I, the Colonial Dames of America. New York: The Grafton Press, 1910.
- Miles Files, Eastern Shore Public Library, http://espl-genealogy.org
Spouse & Children:
- Robert Offley, III.
- Anne Offley
- Robert Offley, III.
- John Offley
- Edward Offley
- Hewett Offley, III.
- Robert Offley, III.
- Susan Offley
- Thomas Offley
- Stephen Offley, III.
- Abigail Offley
- Elizabeth Offley
- Katherine Offley