Vigneron Family of Newport, Rhode Island

The Vigneron family to which Mr. Spare belongs in the maternal line is descended from Norbert Felician Vigneron, who was baptized June 6, 1670, in the town of LaVentie, Province of Artois, Diocese of Arras, in the French Netherlands. He was the son of Anthony and Anne Therese (de Beaussart) Vigneron. The record of his baptism is as follows:

“Extrait des registres de l’eglise parrisale de La Ventie, Diocese D’Arras, Province D’ Artois.

“Anno 1670 Die 6” Junii baptisatus est Norbertus Felicianus Vigneron, films Antonii et Annae Theresae De Beaussart quern e sacro fonte susceperunt

“Mastinus Libertus Vignobla.

“Sacellanus, et Maria Margarita De Beaussart.”

“Collatione est trouve conforme a l’originale. 25 Aoust 1786

“Desgasdins (Desgardins?)

“Cure doyen de La Ventie.”

The date of his coming to this country is uncertain, but his marriage to Susanna Peirce, daughter of Joanna Peirce, of Newport, took place in Newport, R. I. There are records of five of their children, as follows:

  1. Charles Anthony (or Antonio) Vigneron, mentioned below
  2. Stephen Vigneron, who became a physician, and after practicing for some time in Newport, joined the expedition to Cape Breton in 1745, and afterward was surgeon on a cruise with Captain Benitland, in the war against the French, and was lost at sea
  3. Norbert Vigneron, who died young in 1724
  4. Charlotte Vigneron
  5. Anne Therese  Vigneron

The last three all died young, and are buried in the common burying ground at Newport. Norbert Felician Vigneron was a well educated physician and had a large practice. A paper in the possession of Capt. William Rogers Taylor, U. S. N., says:

“An accompt of my father’s decease on Tuesday night, February 7, at a quarter of an hour after twelve, 1764, being ninety-three years eight months and one day old and was inter’d the tenth day following, being Fryday in the afternoon between four and five of the clock.”

His wife died Jan. 31, 1748-49, aged fifty-one years, and both are buried in the old common burying ground at Newport. The inscriptions on their gravestones are still legible, as are those over their children Anne Therese and Norbert, the former reading:

“Anterse, daughter of Norbert and Susanna Vigneron, died August 13, 1727, aged twenty years”; while the latter is: “Here lieth Norbert, son of Norbert and Susanna Vigneron, who died August 1″ (year illegible). “Norbert Vigneron, 1724.” (See Vigneron Family, page 15, Nos. 4 & 5, and also in list of children, page 3).

Charles Antonio (Anthony) Vigneron, eldest child of Norbert Felician and Susanna, succeeded his father in the practice of medicine. He died in New York of smallpox Nov. 10, 1772, in his fifty-sixth year, and was interred in the Rev. Mr. Gano’s burying ground. At the age of twenty-one years he married Hannah, daughter of Jonathan and Mary Irish, of Little Compton, and they had eleven children, of whom there is record of but three:

  1. Stephen Vigneron (fifth child), born Nov. 25, 1748, who practiced medicine at Newport, was warmly enlisted in the cause of independence, and withdrew from his home city in 1776 upon the occupation of Rhode Island by the British, his library, instruments and other property being confiscated, and he died on board the hospital ship at New York, Aug. 24, 1781, of putrid fever (he was unmarried) in the thirty-ninth year of his age
  2. Charles Vigneron is mentioned below
  3. Mary Vigneron married Nov. 21, 1764, James Taylor, of Newport, in which city she died.

Charles Vigneron, son of Dr. Charles Antonio, was one of the sixty-one citizens of Newport who were arrested by the British authorities there in the autumn of 1777, when it was expected that General Spencer would attempt the capture of Rhode Island. These citizens were charged with the design of setting fire to the forage of the British troops, which was stored in the yard of the Quaker meeting-house, in order to create a diversion of the troops when the island should be attacked. They were sent on board a prison ship in Newport harbor and detained about six weeks, being released Nov. 7, 1777. Mr. Vigneron died soon after. He married Mary Taylor, daughter of Peter and Thankful Taylor, of Newport, and their children were:

  1. Norbert Vigneron, born in Newport, went to Charlestown in early life, sailing from that port as shipmaster. On March 19, 1794, he married Sarah Toussiger, who died July 4, 1856, mother of six children. He died April 19, 1807.
  2. Charles Vigneron embraced the sea as a profession, and perished in the wreck of his vessel off Long Island. He was unmarried.
  3. Susan Vigneron  died unmarried Oct. 1, 1849, aged, fifty-one years. The last six years of her life she was totally blind.
  4. Mary Vigneron, born in Newport, early became convinced of the truth of the principles of the Friends, and became an approved minister of that faith. She married Jonathan Card, and died at New Bedford Feb. 29, 1848, the mother of two children.
  5. Hannah Vigneron

Hannah Vigneron, daughter of Charles and Mary, was born at Newport, and died at New Bedford April 6, 1842, aged sixty-eight years. She married Timothy Weaver, and they made their home in Dartmouth. Their children were:

  1. John Weaver, born Oct. 14, 1800, married Hannah D. Cook, and had five children
  2. Mary V. Weaver is mentioned below
  3. Alice Weaver, born Feb. 24, 1805, married in 1827 Benjamin Terry, and had nine children
  4. Hannah I. Weaver, born March 1, 1807, married in 1835 Meltiah Hathaway, and had eight children
  5. Stephen Weaver, born May 23, 1809, married Rebecca Hathaway, and had seven children.

Mary V. Weaver, daughter of Timothy and Hannah (Vigneron) Weaver, was born at Newport, Feb. 4, 1802. On Oct. 22, 1822, she married Edward Bennett, and they had one child, Susan Vigneron.

Susan Vigneron Bennett, daughter of Edward and Mary V. (Weaver) Bennett, was born at Long Plain, Fairhaven, Dec. 30, 1823. On Nov. 1, 1840, she married Benjamin Mason, and their only child, Mary B., married Stephen V. Weaver. On July 12, 1846, Mrs. Susan V. (Bennett) Mason married (second) John Spare, M. D., who died in May, 1901. The children of this marriage were:

  1. Sarah L. Spare
  2. John V. Spare
  3. James Edward Spare
  4. Elijah Eric Spare
  5. Susan F. Spare
  6. Walter Vernon Spare

Representative Men and Old Families of Southeastern Massachusetts: containing historical sketches of prominent and representative citizens and genealogical records of many of the old families. 3 Volumes. Beers & Chicago. 1912.

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