Richard (ca. 1585-ca. 1623) and Isabella (ca. 1589-unknown) Pace and their son, George (ca. 1609/11-1655,) were among the earliest families that landed at Jamestown. Their arrival date is unknown, but it is speculated that they arrived in August, 1611 with Sir Tomas Gates, William Perry and Captain William Powell, given their later relationships with the latter two.
Richard, a carpenter from Wapping (London’s old maritime district,) and Isabella Smythe were married in St. Dunstan’s Church, Stepney (East End of London) on 5 October 1608. Richard was likely employed and sent to Jamestown by the Virginia Company of London, entitling him to 100 acres after seven years’ labor; the Company also transported his family. Jamestown’s population was then about 300.
The Paces, having arrived in the colony before 1616 and as Ancient Planters, were eligible for land grants from the Company in 1618. Isabella may have also been eligible for them, for it is likely that she may have been the cause of the first General Assembly's 1619 action to enable land ownership by women as well as men. On 5 December 1620 Richard received a patent for 400 acres that included 300 for his six headrights for bringing settlers or servants. Isabella also received 100 acres (for unknown reasons) and later bought another 100 acres from Francis Chapman. Their land was on a high bluff across the James River from Jamestown in what is now Surry County, a plantation that they named “Paces Paines.”
Richard Pace is best known for warning Jamestown of the well-planned and devastating Powhatan Indian surprise attack on all the English settlements along the James River on 22 March 1621/2. Early that morning, an Indian boy, Chanco, William Perry’s servant, was living in the Pace household. He alerted Pace to the impending attack and they rowed a small boat over two miles to Jamestown to warn its residents. Their alarms helped to spare Jamestown itself, but over a score outlying plantations were decimated and more than a quarter of the colony’s settlers were killed.
Richard petitioned to return to Paces Panes and finally did so in February 1623/4. He died between February 1623 and the 1624 Muster. The widowed Isabella then married William Perry (date unknown.) He and his son Henry, Isabella and George Pace were not in Jamestown for the February 1625 muster. On 9 May 1625, Isabella Perry (Mrs. William) testified in a court trial in Jamestown. She was widowed again (date unknown) and married merchant George Menifee (date unknown) and died on an unknown date.
George Pace patented his father’s 400 acres on 1 September 1628 and, in 1638, married Sarah Maycock(e), daughter of the Reverend Samuel Maycock(e), who was killed in the 1622 Indian uprising. George died in 1655, predeceased by Sarah.
First California Company Organizing Governor Martha Pace Gresham is a descendant of the Paces
To Our Contributors
We welcome properly researched contributions of ancestor profiles, vignettes and comments from members that focus on their ancestors’ roles in Jamestown’s history, plus other aspects of their lives, events and experiences in the colony. PLEASE NOTE that all information must be documented and backed up by primary source documents, and not unverifiable information and family and urban legends. Submissions without this backup may be rejected. Please limit contributions and blog entries solely to the ancestors themselves, and do not include subsequent lineage information. Entries should be no more than 400 words.