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

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

In ancient Anglo-Saxon England, the ancestors of the Odum surname lived in Oldham, in Lancashire. This was a town near the city of Manchester; it has since been absorbed by that city. The place-name Oldham is derived from the Old English elements old, which means old, and ham, which means farm. The place-name therefore translates as "the old farm." Alternatively, it would appear that the place-name also appeared as a personal name; the surname could be derived from this personal name, making it a patronymic name. However, the etymology of the name remains the same regardless of the actual process by which this surname arose.

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It is only in the last few hundred years that the English language has been standardized. For that reason, early Anglo-Saxon surnames like Odum are characterized by many spelling variations. As the English language changed and incorporated elements of other European languages, even literate people changed the spelling of their names. The variations of the name Odum include: Oldham, Oldum, Oldan, Oldhams and others.

First found in Lancashire where they held a family seat from early times and their first records appeared on the early census rolls taken by the early Kings of Britain to determine the rate of taxation of their subjects.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Odum research. Another 207 words(15 lines of text) covering the years 1486, 1480, 1505, 1486, 1480, 1452, 1519, 1653 and 1683 are included under the topic Early Odum History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Another 77 words(6 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Odum Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Many English families tired of political and religious strife left Britain for the new colonies in North America. Although the trip itself offered no relief - conditions on the ships were extremely cramped, and many travelers arrived diseased, starving, and destitute - these immigrants believed the opportunities that awaited them were worth the risks. Once in the colonies, many of the families did indeed prosper and, in turn, made significant contributions to the culture and economies of the growing colonies. An inquiry into the early roots of North American families has revealed a number of immigrants bearing the name Odum or a variant listed above: John Oldham (c.1600-1636) who emigrated to Plymouth in 1623, was involved in establishing the unsuccessful settlement on Cape Ann (1626), and was murdered by the Pequot in an event leading to the Pequot War (1637). Thomas Oldham settled in New England in 1635.

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  1. Papworth, J.W and A.W Morant. Ordinary of British Armorials. London: T.Richards, 1874. Print.
  2. Marcharn, Frederick George. A Constitutional History of Modern England 1485 to the Present. London: Harper and Brothers, 1960. Print.
  3. Burke, Sir Bernard. Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Peerage and Baronetage, The Privy Council, Knightage and Compainonage. London: Burke Publishing, 1921. Print.
  4. Bolton, Charles Knowles. Bolton's American Armory. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1964. Print.
  5. Hanks, Hodges, Mills and Room. The Oxford Names Companion. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2002. Print. (ISBN 0-19-860561-7).
  6. Sanders, Joanne McRee Edition. English Settlers in Barbados 1637-1800. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  7. Burke, John Bernard Ed. The Roll of Battle Abbey. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  8. Robb H. Amanda and Andrew Chesler. Encyclopedia of American Family Names. New York: Haper Collins, 1995. Print. (ISBN 0-06-270075-8).
  9. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  10. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  11. ...

The Odum Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Odum 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 10 April 2013 at 13:29.

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