No. 12 Roby Ella

no-12-roby-hewinsAccording to Audrey Mae’s artistic cemetery map diagram and her gravestone numbering system, Roby Ella’s gravestone is Gravestone Number Twelve.  Using a Smith-Corona typewriter in the 1980s, Audrey Mae typed the following mini-biograpy of Roby Ella, an eighth-generation Spencer in East Greenwich, Rhode Island:


Web author does not know any history of Roby Ella’s husband Lorenzo Hewins. His name on their shared gravestone is Lorenzo but Audrey Mae knew him to be called George.  Roby Ella married George Hewens but the marking on their husband and wife shared gravestone (No. 12) is Lorenzo Hewins (No. 12). More research is needed.

Bruce MacGunnigle 4

According to Audrey Mae, Roby Ella’s father is Joseph Jason (No. 9) who is the fifth child of Richard Anthony (“Deacon”) (No. 6) and Roby (née Tarbox) (No. 5) Spencer.  Roby Ella’s mother is Celinda Kettelle who is Violette Kettelle’s great aunt. Roby was no doubt named after her father’s mother Roby.  She was named after her father’s mother and her sister Melissa (No. 13) was named after her father’s grandmother, Huldah (No.1).

Both daughters, Roby and Huldah Melissa, were named after their father’s, Joseph Jason’s, side of the family. (Were any of their children named after their mother’s, Celinda’s, side of the family?)

According to Audrey Mae, Gravestones Number ten, eleven, twelve, thirteen and fourteen are the children of Joseph Jason (No. 9)  and Celinda (née Kettelle) Spencer.  Roby Ella (No. 12) is the third born of Jason Joseph and Celinda’s five children who are buried in the Spencer Family Cemetery. See below:



According to Audrey Mae,  Augustus Burnside (gravestone No. 24) is also a child of Joseph Jason and Celinda and therefore, another brother of Roby Ella.  Augustus Burnside died as a child of three years.ams-24-august-burnside-joseph-jason-celinda-young-child

According to Audrey Mae, Roby Ella’s mother was Celinda Kettelle who was a great aunt of Audrey Mae’s cousin, Violet Kettelle. Violet Kettelle (2-22-1912–6-4-2004) was a Spencer historian who carried on the work of Esther Amanda (née Spencer) Briggs (1-21-1835–6-2-1929). Esther Amanda (“Aunt Mandy”) was the first Spencer historian known to descendants.

Cousin Violet, as Audrey Mae called her, was the first woman to enter Penbroke College in Rhode Island. Violet taught school in Vermont for most of her long career. (glossary of On retirement, Violet returned to her family home on north side of Middle Road in East Greenwich, R.I., to the east of the Spencer family cemetery. Violette spent her retirement years at her family home on Middle Road and Audrey Mae (3-19-1912–3-11-2007) would often visit Violet on the Kettelle farm. Audrey Mae wanted all her daughters to know cousin Violet who was also a woman before her time.

Violette had said that she could no longer visit her own family historical cemetery as the brush had grown up and concealed the graveyard, and it was too difficult or impossible for her to any more find it, never mind visit it.

Spencer, Johnson, Tarbox, Kettelle and Hewins descendants, if you have any additional information on Roby Ella (née Spencer) Hewins, please add a comment to this web site and the web site editor will add this to the site.  Thanks!”