The family has told the rumor that STEPHENS used to be STEPHENSON because the son got mad at his father and took off SON and became STEPHENS. We don’t know if that is true or if it is true when it happened? I’ve considered it in my research. I have been stuck on finding William J. STEPHENS parents. William was born in 1850 in Illinois. He married Anna RUSSELL in 1870. They had several children, he died and she and several of the kids moved to southern Indiana. In the 1860 census, William was living with William Asbury VAUGHAN and his wife in Henderson County, IL. In the 1870 census, William and his wife Anna were living next to the VAUGHANs. Are the VAUGHAN’s related to William STEPHENS? Or did they foster an orphan? William and Anna named one of their son’s William Asberry STEPHENS after William Asbury VAUGHAN.
William STEPHENS could have died in southern Illinois, possibly Saline County. Anna had a sister living there and her father had been living in White County, IL.
I have found STEPHENS with the alternate spellings of STEAPHENS and STEVENS.