Thomas Stephens of West Firle
Mary Peirce
William Stephens of Alciston
(Abt 1761-1854)


Family Links

Frances Akehurst

William Stephens of Alciston 1

  • Born: Abt 1761, West Firle, Sussex, England
  • Christened: 7 Mar 1762, West Firle, Sussex, England 2
  • Married: 21 May 1792, West Firle, Sussex, England 3
  • Died: 2 Oct 1854, Alciston, Sussex, England
  • Buried: 8 Oct 1854, Alciston, Sussex, England 4

  Research Notes:

In Mar 1776 William Stephens was named as a beneficiary in his father's Will.

In 1792 Joseph Akehurst of Beddingham named William Stephens of Westfirle in co. Sussex, yeoman, as the husband of Joseph's daughter Frances.

At the time of the 1841 England Census William Stephens, aged about 80, ind[ependent], and wife Fanny Stephens, aged about 70, were living in Alciston Sussex. With them were children: Henry (40) and Alexander (25).

At the time of the 1851 England Census William Stevens, age 88, born in Firle, land proprietor and house, and wife Frances Stevens, age 84, born in Firle, were living in Alciston Village, Alciston Sussex. With them were sons (unmarried, born in Firle): Henry (48) and Alexander (40).


William Stephens of Alciston died aged 93 years (burial record).


Abstract of the Will of William Stephens of the Parish of Alciston in the County of Sussex, Cowkeeper, written 18 May 1851, proved 17 Jul 1855. 5

(Names of family members are underlined.)

Devises his copyhold tenement and garden in Alciston where he lives to his son Alexander Stephens and his heirs forever.

Devises his copyhold tenement and garden in Alciston together with three acres of land to his son Henry Stephens and his heirs forever.

Gives all his household goods, furniture, plate, linen and china which shall be in his dwelling house at the time of his decease to his said sons Alexander Stephens and Henry Stephens, share and share alike.

Directs that his executors or administrators shall hold the rest and residue of his personal estate in trust to divide in six parts and distribute to his daughter Sophia Carey the wife of Edward Carey of Ringmer in the said county, farmer, his son James Stephens, his son Joseph Stephens, his son John Stephens, his son Thomas Stephens, and to his son William Stephens.

Constitutes and appoints his sons Alexander Stephens and Henry Stephens co-executors in trust of his will.


Witnesses: Thomas Fears of Alciston, farmer, John Baxter junr. of Lewes

  Marriage Information:

William married Frances Akehurst, daughter of Joseph Akehurst and Frances, on 10 Oct 1787 in Beddingham, Sussex, England. (Frances Akehurst was christened on 12 Apr 1767 in Beddingham, Sussex, England, died on 10 Dec 1855 in Alciston, Sussex, England and was buried there on 16 Dec 1855, aged 88 years.)

  Marriage Notes:

William Stephens of the parish of Bishopstone and Frances Akehurst of this parish

Married by Banns

Witnesses: Joseph Akehurst, John Haywood


1 The Akehurst Wills of East Sussex (1541-1858), Geoffrey Barber, 2nd Edition, Tree 4, p. 24.

2 West Firle Sussex Parish Registers, Baptisms, p. 32.

3 West Firle Parish Registers, Marriages, no. 87.

4 Alciston Sussex Parish Registers, Burials, p. 22, no. 171.

5 Sussex Wills and Administrations in the District Probate Registry at Lewes, ESRO reference: PBT 1/1/85/265.

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