In 1835, there appeared in the church records at St. Mary's and All Saints Parish, in Meare, Somersetshire, England, the banns of marriage, on three consecutive Sundays, starting April 5th, contuing the 12th and the 19th, publishing the coming marriage of Thomas Difford, a bachelor, and Eliza Willcox, a spinster. The marriage took place on April 20, 1835, and was witnessed by Elijah Difford, Thomas's brother, and Edra Willcox. The vicar was W. Phelps.
In February, 1838, Thomas and Eliza, with their two children Robert and Hannah, aged 2 and 6 weeks respectively, left Somersetshire for the southern coast, and set sail on a sailing vessel for the United States of America. The voyage took six weeks. As Eliza already had a brother living in the Western Reserve in Ohio, the Village of Mesopotamia became their destination upon landing on the East Coast.
They settled down in Mesopotamia and in a few years, added 5 more children to their family, Jane, Elizabeth, Albert, Allen, and Edwin.
Thomas Difford was born January 31, 1809, in Somersetshire, England, and died at the age of 66 years, in Mesopotamia. Eliza Willcox Difford was born February 24, 1811, and died in Mesopotamia August 24, 1867, at the age of 56 years. They are both buried Fairview Cemetery in Mesopotamia Center, Ohio.
This information was compiled by various Difford researchers over a period of at least 30 years. My Uncle was in communication with several researchers since the 1960's and traveled to England to complete his own research. In the last 3 years, through the internet, I have come in contact with cousins I didn't know existed, from both the Difford and the Wilcox family. Through them, I now have photographs of Thomas and Eliza Willcox Difford, and their children - something my family never had before, and the story of how the Difford family came to this country with the Willcox's. It is said that all the Difford's in the world can take their lineage back to Giles Difford and his wife, Alice.