Over the years I have photographed thousands of gravestones. Sometimes it can be quite challenging. I've dealt with gravestones obscured by encroaching grass, day lilies, wild grape vines, or lilac bushes. I've excavated half-buried gravestones. I've dealt with numerous lighting issues: gravestones in heavy shade, gravestones that face north, gravestones that can only be read when the sun shines perpendicular to the stone. But I've never had to deal with a wasp's nest on a monument. I'll think I'll wait for freezing temperatures, or use a telephoto lens.
Saturday, September 6, 2014
|Gravestone of Thomas Vodden (1814-1815)|
Thomas Vodden the son of Laurence Vodden (1783-1855) and Ann Manning (1781-1873), was baptised at Burrington, Devon on 9 Jun 1814. When Thomas died the following year he was buried at St Giles in the Wood. Why his parents choose to bury him there is unclear, as St Giles in the Wood is several kilometres from Week in Burrington where Thomas's father was a yeoman farmer. Thomas's father and grandfather had been born in Winkleigh. His great-grandfather, however, had been born in St Giles in the Wood, and his great-great-grandfather, Lawrence Vodden (? -1733), is the common ancestor of the numerous Vodden lines in North Devon.
|Ann Manning (1781-1873)|
It seems likely that Laurence and Ann had a child between the time of their marriage and the birth of their son Laurence in 1811, however, no record of this child has been found. Thomas was their second child, followed by Elizabeth in 1816, Ann in 1818, Grace in 1820, Rose in 1822, and Rebecca in 1825. All of these children were baptised at Burrington.
The 1838 Title Apportionment shows two farms with the name Week in Burrington: Higher Week and Week Park. Both farms are small: Week Park at 16 acres and Higher Week at 26 acres. In 1838 Higher Week was owned by Robert Chichester and occupied by John Manning, possibly the brother of Ann. The Higher Week farmhouse dates from about 1600 and is Grade II listed.
|Higher Week Farmhouse, Burrington, Devon|
According to an 1895 article in the Acton Free Press, written to celebrate their daughter Rebecca Vodden's fiftieth wedding anniversary, Laurence and Ann emigrated to Canada about 1829. After spending a few years in Miramachi, New Brunswick, they moved to Esquesing Township, Halton County to the west of Toronto.
Greenwood Cemetery, Georgetown
John Kennedy was the son of land surveyor Charles Kennedy (1792-1854) who mapped out the north half of Esquesing in 1819, and built a sawmill on Silver Creek. Ann Street in Georgetown is named after his daughter-in-law, Ann Vodden. In 1845, John Kennedy built Cleave House, named after the subsequent owners. In 1871 he built and moved into a Victorian cottage now known as the John Kennedy House. Ann died in 1886, ten months after her husband.
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Rose Vodden may have married Samuel Snell of Chinguacousy. Like Rose, Samuel had been born in Burrington, Devon, and had emigrated to Upper Canada via Miramachi, along with his parents. According to an entry in the Wesleyan Methodist Baptismal Register held at the United Church of Canada Archives, Samuel and Rose had a daughter Mary born in Mar 1843. Rose, however, died later that year and was buried at the Zion Cemetery.
What became of Grace, and whether Laurence and Ann had other children, has yet to be discovered.