Hi, let me welcome you to my pages. You're looking at the older and wiser Bruce Pence. Wiser, because I have just spent one great year learning about our family and how we got here. Please, take time to see everything and if you have comments or suggestions just click on the "e-mail"at the bottom of the page.


Inevitably, things must change. For almost a year I have essentially maintained the same look and information on this site. There has been so much new material discovered in the past few months I feel it necessary to do a major overhaul and update. My mission remains the same; to continue to search for information about the Pences, Penstones, and Glenns. In addition , there will be some attention paid to the Stratton branch of the family. As you will learn, Sarah Penstone was a very important part of our family and a descendant of the Strattons.

Many new people have come into my life over the past year and all have made a significant contribution to my effort. I first must give a great deal of credit for the genesis of the project to my son Steve. It was his questions about grandparents and other family members that brought to my attention the fact that I also had many unanswered questions. So, the search began. Thank you, Steve.

One of the most important contacts I made on the internet was with a lady from Kentucky named Lise Embley. Lise was (is) in the process of transcribing a diary belonging to an ancestor of hers named Annie Eliza Dean. Annie's diary covers the period 1863-1885 in Pike county, Illinois. Numerous are the entries mentioning the Penstone family. It soon became obvious they were close friends and spent a lot of time in each others company. Annie managed to chronicle many important events that gave me a lot of good information about my own family such as marriages, births, and deaths. Her second entry tells of the good news that great grandfather Edward had been found alive after it was assumed he had been killed during the Civil War and funeral arrangements were under way. Suffice it to say, this has been a very important document for me. Thank you, Lise.

Next I began to search for relatives in the Pittsfield, Illinois area, as that was where my father and his brothers and sisters were born. Much to my surprise and delight I received a response from Mary (Penstone) Mann who had only in recent years returned to Pittsfield after being away for most of her adult life working as a teacher and raising a family. I told her of my interest and that I was planning a trip to Pittsfield to do more research. Mary welcomed me and the trip was on.

I arrived in Pittsfield in early July, 2000. (Pittsfield, Pike Co., Il...population about 4000 and 4 stoplights...county seat.). The next 8 days Mary guided me through many graveyards, museums, old homesites, and historical landmarks. We spent many hours talking about family history and exchanging pictures and other information. Without her help I would have floundered about for days and surely would not have had as much success. Thank you, Mary.

Another significant person in Illinois was Harriet Brown. Harriet also lives in Pittsfield. She is descended from my great grandfather's brother, Stratton and has been a life long resident of Pittsfield. Harriet was born in 1915, so was personally acquainted with many of the family members, long gone, that I can only read about or see in pictures. Harriet was able to relate anecdotes of interesting family incidents and give me a first hand account of what these people were like and how they lived. All of which I found to be both interesting and amusing. I treasure the time we had together and appreciate her kindness to me. Thank you Harriet

Another important person in my research has been John Stewart of Grand Island, Nebraska. John furnished me with a great deal of information on Edward and Giles and their service during the Civil War. He is descended from the Edom family and Elizabeth (Lizzie) Edom was Giles' wife. Thank you, John

On the following pages I will trace the Penstone's journey from England during the mid-19th century, their arrival in the States under difficult circumstances, and their ultimate success as farmers. It is a testament to their perseverance and dedication to family and country.

The Pence family has been in this country since the early 18th century and pretty much pursued a life of farming with some evidence of dealing in general merchandise and hauling. Prior to migrating to Illinois, they were primarily located in Virginia and Ohio and some parts of Pennsylvania. Currently, my information is pretty sketchy and I hope through further research to learn more about them and their lives. Most of what you will see on succeeding pages will be of people and events post 1850's.

I am still searching for clues to the Glenn family. Great grandmother Maria Glenn (Edward's wife) was the daughter of William and Maria Glenn. William migrated to the States in 1830 and was noted for his work as a stone mason and farmer while daughter Maria (Minnie) was revered as a school teacher. More about them will follow. A good deal of information about the Glenns was furnished by Frank Turnbull of Pittsfield and he is also a descendant of the Glenn family. Thank you, Frank

I hope you find my work and discoveries interesting. Any comments, additions, or corrections will be appreciated.

Bruce Pence

I have added a new feature to my page. If you will click on the word "SURNAMES" at the bottom of the page, you can view the entire family tree.



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Saturday, 08-Sep-2018 06:23:14 MDT