Thursday, March 25, 2010

Smith territory

I mentioned Ephraim Smith and Elizabeth Darker in the last blog. They were my Pop Smith's grandparents. There is a family story that Ephraim walked the six miles from Old Dalby, where he lived, to Plumtree, where Elizabeth lived, on the morning of his wedding, and fell into a ditch full of water on the way!

Ephraim and Elizabeth lived at Old Dalby for several years before they migrated to Australia in 1852. I don't know where they lived but it was good to have a look at the village.

As we arrived at the church we met the parish rector who was inspecting the new gate being installed. He opened up the church for us and showed us around. They have some amazing treasures tucked away behind cupboard doors, some rescued from an earlier church that was burnt down in the early 1800s. He showed us several interesting headstones in the churchyard - one is an old slate headstone that has been utilised as a draining board for newly pressed cheeses, one is of of style unique to this area depicting winged angels.

We also went to see Willoughby on the Wolds because Smiths were there as well. I would have liked to be there to hear the bells, as per the notice in the church vestry, and it was nice to see the list of  plants noted in the churchyard, even if it does include nettles and couch grass.

It would have been nice to linger in these villages, and I can see why people choose to live in them. Village life is a very appealing option, particularly when they're so close to big towns and cities.


  1. Hey! The Willoughby churchyard notice actually lists fungi and lichens. How very advanced of them.

    Love the shot of puzzled Phil and the parking meter pay station.

  2. Thank you for listing this post and the following as my ancestors were also Ephraim and Elizabeth who were my mothers grandfather's , grandparents (paternal). I will try to show my mother this post when I see her next.