Sandra and I have recently returned from a two-week trip to Europe. We spent time in Northern Ireland researching Sandra’s family, a week in Switzerland, and then a day and a half in Lincolnshire, where the Stephensons and Woulds lived. In Lincolnshire we met up with Pat Stephenson and his wife Eve who live in Essex, England. Pat and I are descendants of George Stephenson, our 3rd great-grandfather, and Elizabeth Would. We are 4th cousins and after meeting through this blog, have shared e-mails and phone calls for some time. Because we would only have a short time in Lincolnshire, Pat and Eve spent several days there earlier and scouted out the area. When we arrived, they became our guides in a whirlwind tour. We enjoyed being with them tremendously and hope that we can meet again in the near future.
I don’t think we learned anything really new on our trip, but the opportunity to visit areas where our ancestors had lived, see the churches they had attended, and the cemeteries where they were buried was very rewarding. We took lots of pictures and will share some of them in the blog.
Burial records before 1813 are very limited and are maintained in archives in Lincoln city. The archives were closed during the time we were there. The grave stones in this area have not survived the weather well and most are illegible. We were excited to find a few where the name Stephenson or Would could be read, but often dates or other inscriptions were not readable. Still, we enjoyed the time in Lincolnshire and our visit with Pat and Eve tremendously and we feel that the trip was very worthwhile.