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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright 2000 - 2014

Origins Available: English, Irish

Where did the English Ford family come from? What is the English Ford family crest and coat of arms? When did the Ford family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the Ford family history?

The name Ford has been recorded in British history since the time when the Anglo-Saxons ruled over the region. The name is assumed to have been given to someone who was a keeper of the ford or river crossing.

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The first dictionaries that appeared in the last few hundred years did much to standardize the English language. Before that time, spelling variations in names were a common occurrence. The language was changing, incorporating pieces of other languages, and the spelling of names changed with it. Ford has been spelled many different ways, including Forde, Ford, Alford and others.

First found in Devon where they held a family seat from very ancient times, some say well before the Norman Conquest and the arrival of Duke William at Hastings in 1066 A.D.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Ford research. Another 231 words(16 lines of text) covering the years 1804, 1640, 1642, 1586, 1640, 1559, 1616, 1594, 1615, 1598, 1674, 1662, 1619, 1699, 1619, 1684, 1660, 1664, 1669 and are included under the topic Early Ford History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Another 181 words(13 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Ford Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Some of the Ford family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 117 words(8 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Thousands of English families in this era began to emigrate the New World in search of land and freedom from religious and political persecution. Although the passage was expensive and the ships were dark, crowded, and unsafe, those who made the voyage safely were rewarded with opportunities unavailable to them in their homeland. Research into passenger and immigration lists has revealed some of the very first Fords to arrive in North America:

Ford Settlers in the United States in the 17th Century


  • Mrs. Ford, who arrived in Plymouth, Massachusetts in 1621
  • Widow Ford, who arrived in Plymouth, Massachusetts in 1621
  • Martha Ford, who landed in Plymouth, Massachusetts in 1621
  • Joanna Ford, who arrived in Nantucket, Massachusetts in 1630
  • Abigail Ford, who landed in Nantucket, Massachusetts in 1630


Ford Settlers in the United States in the 18th Century


  • Reuben Ford, who landed in Pennsylvania in 1703
  • Christopher Ford, who arrived in Virginia in 1711
  • Ale Ford, who arrived in Virginia in 1714
  • Matthew Ford, who arrived in Virginia in 1717
  • Richard Ford, who arrived in Maryland in 1740


Ford Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century


  • Wm Ford, who arrived in America in 1803
  • Robert Ford, who landed in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1812
  • George Ford, aged 25, arrived in Pennsylvania in 1812
  • Benjamin Ford, who landed in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1832
  • Sam Ford, who arrived in North America in 1832


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  • Henry Ford (1863-1947), Automotive Industrialist, namesake of the Ford motor company
  • President Gerald Rudolph Ford Jr. (1913-2006), American congressman, Vice President (1973-74), 38th President of the U.S. (1974-77) and recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom
  • John Ford (1895-1973), American Academy Award winning film director (4 times) and recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom
  • Harrison Ford (b. 1942), American film actor and producer, he received the American Film Institute's Life Achievement Award in 2000
  • Richard Ford (b. 1944), American author and winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in 1996
  • Henry Ford II (1917-1987), known as "HF2" or "Hank the Deuce", the oldest son of Edsel Ford and oldest grandson of Henry Ford, President of Ford Motor Company (1945-1960), Chairman and CEO (1960-1979), recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom
  • Ernest Jennings "Tennessee Ernie" Ford (1919-1991), American singer, actor and recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom
  • Elizabeth Anne "Betty" Bloomer Ford (b. 1918), widow of former United States President Gerald R. Ford and recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom
  • Colonel Kevin Anthony Ford (b. 1960), NASA Astronaut with over 13 days and 21 hours in space
  • Paul Ford (1901-1976), American character actor

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  • The Fords of Dearborn by Ford Richardson Bryan.
  • The Genealogy of George Gillette, and of John Watts Ford by Louise Dollison Marsh.
  • A History of Our Ford Family of Virginia, Kentucky, Indiana, Mississippi, Missouri, and Tennessee by Stith Malone Cain.
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  1. Ingram, Rev. James. Translator Anglo-Saxon Chronicle 1823. Print.
  2. Magnusson, Magnus. Chambers Biographical Dictionary 5th edition. Edinburgh: W & R Chambers, 1990. Print.
  3. Hanks, Hodges, Mills and Room. The Oxford Names Companion. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2002. Print. (ISBN 0-19-860561-7).
  4. Best, Hugh. Debrett's Texas Peerage. New York: Coward-McCann, 1983. Print. (ISBN 069811244X).
  5. Egle, William Henry. Pennsylvania Genealogies Scotch-Irish and German. Harrisburg: L.S. Hart, 1886. Print.
  6. Library of Congress. American and English Genealogies in the Library of Congress. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1967. Print.
  7. Hanks, Patricia and Flavia Hodges. A Dictionary of Surnames. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988. Print. (ISBN 0-19-211592-8).
  8. Weis, Frederick Lewis, Walter Lee Sheppard and David Faris. Ancestral Roots of Sixty Colonists Who Came to New England Between 1623 and 1650 7th Edition. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0806313676).
  9. Leeson, Francis L. Dictionary of British Peerages. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1986. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-1121-5).
  10. The Norman People and Their Existing Descendants in the British Dominions and the United States Of America. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0636-X).
  11. ...

The Ford Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Ford Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

This page was last modified on 27 July 2014 at 00:27.

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