STEVENSON, surnames of England, Scotland, and Ireland, and Stephenson of the Micmac Indians of Newfoundland - son of Stephen (See STEPHENS), or in England also from the English place name Stevenstone (Devon). (Cottle, Spiegelhalter, MacLysaght). Guppy found Stephenson and Stevenson widespread in the Midlands, the north of England and Sussex, with Stephenson characteristic of the northern counties and Stevenson characteristic of the Midlands, Sussex and Scotland south of the Forth and Clyde. Spiegelhalter traced Stephenson and Steveson in Devon, and Black also traced both forms in Scotland. MacLysaght traced Stephenson in Co. Limerick and Ulster, and Stevenson, Ste(e)nson and Stinson in Ulster. He found Stevenson also a synonym of the Anglo-Norman FitzStephen.



At St. John's: Married John Stevenson to Catherin Meehan. Witnesses: William Meehan and Ellen Meehan. Priest: Thos. Waldron.
At Caplin Bay: Voter's List for Caplin Bay: 1840, 1841, 1842, 1844, 1845 - John Stephenson.
  Births, Deaths, Marriages in Newfoundland Newspapers (1825-1890). Stevenson, born to the wife of John Stevenson (Deputy Sheriff of Southern District), a daughter. June 13/45C.
At Ferryland: Voter's List for Ferryland: 1849, 1852, 1855 - John Stevenson, Esq. 1859 - John Stevenson (Sheriff).
  Births, Deaths, Marriages in Newfoundland Newspapers (1825-1890). Stephenson, born to the wife of John Stephenson (Sheriff of Southern District), a son at Ferryland on 24th. Feb 13/49C.
  Renews Parish RC Baptisms: November 22, 1858 - Stephenson, John Joseph. Sponsors: Eliza Den, Thomas Fowler, Michael Dunphy, Anne Roost. Priests: James Murphy/Robert Brennan. Remark: Convert.
  Royal Gazette- August 6, 1872 - Stephenson, John Esq. The Sheriff of the Southern District died Wednesday last at Ferryland at the age of 72. He was a servant of the Crown for 40 years.
  Ferryland RC Cemetery - Stephenson - John Stephenson, a native of Poole, England - Sheriff of this Southern District, died 31 July 1872; aged 71 yrs.
Family History: According to his headstone in Holy Trinity Cemetery, Ferryland, John Stephenson was born in Poole, (Dorset) England, about 1800/1801. From letters written by Mary Ellen Morris (niece of John's wife), we learn that John was the son of Dr. George Major Stephenson. Mary Ellen stated that Dr. Stephenson, a naval doctor, came out from England to Burin, Newfoundland, about 1804 and was appointed Justice of the Peace there in 1805. It appears he decided to settle here and brought his family over from England. Dr. Stephenson successfully practiced medicine at Burin for some years and eventually died and was buried there. After his death, all of his family, except John, returned to England. Based on a birth notice in 1845 from the St. John's newspapers, John was Deputy Sheriff of the Southern District while he was living at Caplin Bay. In the Voter's Lists for Ferryland District, we find John Stephenson living at The Beach in Caplin Bay until about 1846. However, in May of that year, John was reassigned to Harbour Grace as Deputy Sheriff. A little over a year later, the family returned to Ferryland District, taking up residence at Ferryland. A birth notice for 1849 states that John was now Sheriff of the Southern District, a position he held at Ferryland until his death. From 1849 onward to 1859, John's name appeared in the Ferryland Voter's Lists. He died at Ferryland in 1872 and was buried in Holy Trinity Cemetery in Ferryland. His newspaper obituary says that he was 40 years a servant of the Crown.
  John Stephenson and his wife, Catherine (Kate) Meehan, were married at St. John's in November 1838. It appears they had at least seven children, three sons and four daughters. Several of their children were born at Caplin Bay, one at Harbour Grace, and at least one at Ferryland. John was Protestant, but his children were all raised as Roman Catholics. John eventually converted to Catholicism in 1858. All of John's children moved away from Ferryland when they grew up. Two daughters married prominent men from St. John's; one married a man from France in New York, another joined the Sisters of Mercy and died at the convent in Burin, Newfoundland. Two of John and Catherine's sons, Harold and Rupert, were telegraph operators. Harold eventually moved to the West Indies and died there; Rupert moved to New York and worked for Western Union. The eldest son, William, son worked in the Newfoundland Customs Dept. as a Collector of Duties at Blanc Sablon, Labrador. He died at St. John's in 1883.
Present Status: Although the Stephenson surname is long gone from Calvert and Ferryland, John Stephenson likely has descendants living throughout North America. His youngest daughter, Mary Ellen, married James P. Furlong of St. John's, and it appears that most of their children emigrated to the U.S.A. in the early 1900s. Another of John's daughters, Emily, married Judge Henry Renouf of St. John's. They had four children. Even though this daughter moved to New York after Henry's death, it is my understanding that her children stayed at St. John's. It is unknown if John's eldest daughter, Belle, who married the Frenchman in New York, had any children. It appears the son, Rupert, who lived in New York, was the only one of John's sons who married.

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