Bland was born in Virginia, the daughter of Richard Bennett and Maryann Utie Bennett. Occasionally her first name appears as Ann or Anne. Her birth date is unknown, but the death of John Utie, her mother's first husband, occurred probably in the summer of 1637, and later in the decade Maryann Utie married Bennett, a wealthy Puritan who served on the governor's Council for an indefinite period starting in 1642, was governor of Virginia from 1652 to 1655, and sat on the Council again from 1658 until his death in 1675. Sometime in 1660 Anna Bennett married Theodorick Bland, the Speaker of the House of Burgesses, who was about ten years her senior. Her father deeded the couple his house in James City County in 1662, and in 1665 her husband purchased the Charles City County property known as Westover and moved the family there. Theodorick Bland and Anna Bland had three sons, so far as is known, before his death on April 23, 1672. About four years later she married St. Leger Codd, a widower with three children from his first marriage. They had one son and one daughter.
Her principal adversary was John Bland's wife, Sarah Greene Bland, who had influence at court and with members of the Privy Council. Sarah Bland became her husband's legal representative and launched a counteroffensive in England in 1676. Giles Bland had meanwhile become a leader in Bacon's Rebellion (1676–1677), in the aftermath of which he was executed and his property confiscated. Sarah Bland traveled to Virginia in 1678 as her husband's representative. The claims and legal actions of Giles Bland and Sarah Bland subjected Anna Bland Codd and her second husband to lawsuits, petitions, and counterpetitions for nine years, during part of which they retired to his property in Maryland to avoid legal harassment.
Although the legal battles exhausted much of the Codds' estate, Anna Bland Codd succeeded in preserving Westover and other of Theodorick Bland's properties for her sons, who became wealthy planters and prominent public men. Anna Bennett Bland Codd died in Maryland, probably about November 1687.
1660 - Theodorick Bland and Anna Bennett marry. They will have three sons.
April 23, 1672 - Theodorick Bland dies. He is buried on the grounds of Westover, in Charles City County.
ca. 1673 - Giles Bland travels from England to Virginia to serve as customs collector and to resolve claims against his family for settlement by his uncle's widow, Anna Bennett Bland.
ca. 1676 - Anna Bennett Bland marries St. Leger Codd, a widower with three children. They will have one son and one daughter.
1676 - Sarah Greene Bland, wife of John Bland, launches a counteroffensive against Anna Bennett Bland's claim of her late husband's estate.
1682 - The Lords of Trade order Sarah Greene Bland and Anna Bennett Bland Codd to appear at a hearing in London.
1682 - The Privy Council decides that all future appeals from rulings of the General Court must be made to the Privy Council in England rather than to the General Assembly.
1686 - The arbitrators in the court case between Anna Bennett Bland Codd and Sarah Greene Bland settle the suit in a manner unsatisfactory to Codd and satisfactory to Bland.
ca. November 1687 - Anna Bland Codd dies in Maryland.
Cite This Entry
- APA Citation:
Gundersen, J., & the Dictionary of Virginia Biography. Anna Bennett Bland (d. 1687). (2020, February 7). In Encyclopedia Virginia. Retrieved from http://www.EncyclopediaVirginia.org/Bland_Anna_Bennett_d_1687.
- MLA Citation:
Gundersen, Joan and the Dictionary of Virginia Biography. "Anna Bennett Bland (d. 1687)." Encyclopedia Virginia. Virginia Humanities, 7 Feb. 2020. Web. READ_DATE.
First published: May 3, 2013 | Last modified: February 7, 2020
Contributed by Joan Gundersen and the Dictionary of Virginia Biography.