Bincombe with Broadwey, Upwey and Buckland Ripers

The Upwey Spragues

The history of the Sprague Family and the Village of Upwey in England is to be found on many websites... see the links page.

Edward Sprague was born in Upwey about 1576. In 1597 he married Christian who was born in the Village about 1578.

Edward died in the late summer of 1614 and is buried in the Churchyard of St Laurence Upwey.

Of their children - three brothers, Richard, Ralph and William, came across to the New World in 1628/29 on board the Lions Whelp.

Richard married but left no descendants. Ralph headed what was to become the third largest American Sprague line and William headed the line which became by far the largest Sprague line.

There are two important tangible links with the family that are still in regular use in the Church.

The font, at which they would have been baptised into the Christian faith is still used.

The chalice and paten date from 1578 - the year in which Edward’s wife Christian was probably born. As it is highly likely that the family came to Church - in those days it was a must - they would have taken communion from these two historic silver ornaments.

We still use both the chalice and paten for special services, and if we know that there are descendants of Edward and Christian, Richard, Ralph and William, as visitors to the Church, we make sure they are used in the Communion Service.

Those who have shared the bread and wine with us have said what a wonderful experience it has been to hold and drink from that very same communion cup that those early settlers used in their own English village Church before they set out on their epic journey nearly four hundred years ago.

If you happen to be in Church do let us know who you are and this can easily be arranged.

Sprague descendants have been regular visitors to the Church over the years and we always try to make them feel welcome. Some have been quite generous over the years. In 1912 - when the Church was given two new bells, one was donated by the Sprague family from America.

If you are one of our ‘cousins across the pond’ coming to St Laurence Church for a visit, please do let us know. We look forward to seeing you.

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