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

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

The origins of the Bancroft name lie with England's ancient Anglo-Saxon culture. It comes from when the family lived at or near an enclosure at a slope deriving its origin from the Old English phrase of the bank-croft.


Before the last few hundred years, the English language had no fast system of spelling rules. For that reason, spelling variations are commonly found in early Anglo-Saxon surnames. Over the years, many variations of the name Bancroft were recorded, including Bancroft, Bancrofte, Bamcroft and others.

First found in Cheshire and south east Lancashire in the vicinity of Manchester where William and Henry Bancroft established estates, and erected monuments to the Bancrofts at various locations.


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Bancroft research. Another 75 words(5 lines of text) covering the years 1600, 1544, 1610, 1604, 1596, 1658, 1613 and 1696 are included under the topic Early Bancroft History in all our PDF Extended History products.


Another 109 words(8 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Bancroft Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.


To escape oppression and starvation at that time, many English families left for the "open frontiers" of the New World with all its perceived opportunities. In droves people migrated to the many British colonies, those in North America in particular, paying high rates for passages in cramped, unsafe ships. Although many of the settlers did not make the long passage alive, those who did see the shores of North America perceived great opportunities before them. Many of the families that came from England went on to make essential contributions to the emerging nations of Canada and the United States. Research into various historical records revealed some of first members of the Bancroft family emigrate to North America:

Bancroft Settlers in the United States in the 17th Century

  • John Bancroft who settled in Lynn Massachusetts in 1632
  • John and Jane Bancroft settled in Boston Massachusetts in 1632
  • John Bancroft, who arrived in Lynn, Massachusetts in 1632
  • Roger Bancroft, who arrived in Cambridge, Massachusetts in 1636
  • William Bancroft, who arrived in Virginia in 1640


  • Aaron Bancroft (1755-1839), American theologian
  • George Bancroft (1882-1956), American actor
  • Hubert Howe Bancroft (1832-1918), American historian & writer
  • Anne Bancroft (b. 1931), American actor
  • Edward Bancroft (1744-1821), American double agent in the American Revolutionary War
  • Dave Bancroft (1891-1972), American baseball player and member of the Baseball Hall of Fame
  • George Bancroft (1800-1891), American historian, statesman, and Secretary of the Navy (1845-1846)
  • Sir Ian Powell Bancroft (1922-1996), English politician, created Baron Bancroft of Coatham in 1982
  • Sir Squire Bancroft (1841-1926), English Victorian actor and one of the best known actor managers in the Victorian age
  • Richard Bancroft (1544-1610), English prelate



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  1. Hanks, Patricia and Flavia Hodges. A Dictionary of Surnames. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988. Print. (ISBN 0-19-211592-8).
  2. Hitching, F.K and S. Hitching. References to English Surnames in 1601-1602. Walton On Thames: 1910. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0181-3).
  3. Best, Hugh. Debrett's Texas Peerage. New York: Coward-McCann, 1983. Print. (ISBN 069811244X).
  4. Bede, The Venerable. Historia Ecclesiatica Gentis Anglorum (The Ecclesiastical History Of the English People). Available through Internet Medieval Sourcebook the Fordham University Centre for Medieval Studies. Print.
  5. Innes, Thomas and Learney. The Tartans of the Clans and Families of Scotland 1st Edition. Edinburgh: W & A. K. Johnston Limited, 1938. Print.
  6. Burke, Sir Bernard. General Armory Of England, Scotland, Ireland and Wales. Ramsbury: Heraldry Today. Print.
  7. Cook, Chris. English Historical Facts 1603-1688. London: MacMillan, 1980. Print.
  8. Markale, J. Celtic Civilization. London: Gordon & Cremonesi, 1976. Print.
  9. Ingram, Rev. James. Translator Anglo-Saxon Chronicle 1823. Print.
  10. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  11. ...

The Bancroft Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Bancroft 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 1 October 2014 at 23:10.

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