I have a ancestor with the last name Strickland who is buried in this small village. While the majority of my ancestors came to North America from Scotland and England, they were descents of people who fought for the Normans and were rewarded with lands and titles in France. Mostly in the Picardie region. The original family name in French is 'de Strickland.'
My ancestor died in the 1800's about the time that Napoleon III came to power and started the Second Revolution. My ancestor was older when he went to the France and died there. As the family held large estates in the area, I believe he may have traveled to France to ensure the family's properties were not claimed as French holdings and seized by the government.
I haven't proven this theory as yet, but it makes sense given the politics are the time. And for women who traveled there, it may have been to marry to prevent the same threats to the family holdings by tying them to an American descendent.