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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright 2000 - 2015

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

The ancient history of the Grantham name begins with the ancient Anglo-Saxon tribes of Britain. The name is derived from when the family resided in Grantham, a town located in the county of Lincolnshire. The name was derived from the Old English word grand which may have been derived from the personal name Granta and the Old English word ham meaning "homestead"


Until quite recently, the English language has lacked a definite system of spelling rules. Consequently, Anglo-Saxon surnames are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations. Changes in Anglo-Saxon names were influenced by the evolution of the English language, as it incorporated elements of French, Latin, and other languages. Although Medieval scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded, so it is common to find one person referred to by several different spellings of his surname, even the most literate people varied the spelling of their own names. Variations of the name Grantham include Grantham, Grantam, Grantem, Grantum, Granthem and others.

First found in Lincolnshire at Grantham, a market town within the South Kesteven district, which was first listed in the Domesday Book as Grantham and probably meant "homestead or village of a man called Granta" derived from the Old English personal name + ham. Alternatively, the name could have been derived from the Old English word "grand" meaning "gravel" + ham. [1]


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Grantham research. Another 177 words(13 lines of text) covering the years 1328, 1573, 1630, 1604, 1629, 1589, 1612, 1655, 1640, 1641 and 1718 are included under the topic Early Grantham History in all our PDF Extended History products.


Another 157 words(11 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Grantham Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.


Searching for a better life, many English families migrated to British colonies. Unfortunately, the majority of them traveled under extremely harsh conditions: overcrowding on the ships caused the majority of the immigrants to arrive diseased, famished, and destitute from the long journey across the ocean. For those families that arrived safely, modest prosperity was attainable, and many went on to make invaluable contributions to the development of the cultures of the new colonies. Research into the origins of individual families in North America revealed records of the immigration of a number of people bearing the name Grantham or a variant listed above:

Grantham Settlers in United States in the 17th Century

  • Andrew Grantham, who landed in Newbury, Massachusetts in 1667

Grantham Settlers in United States in the 18th Century

  • Jer Grantham, who arrived in Virginia in 1706
  • John Grantham arrived in Pennsylvania in 1772
  • John Grantham settled in New England in 1778

Grantham Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • Peter Grantham settled in New York in 1807
  • Peter Grantham, aged 28, landed in New York in 1807
  • Henry I Grantham, who landed in New York, NY in 1816
  • James Grantham arrived in Philadelphia in 1851

Grantham Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century

  • William Grantham, aged 20, a farm labourer, arrived in South Australia in 1850 aboard the ship "Constance"
  • Thomas Grantham, aged 25, a labourer, arrived in South Australia in 1860 aboard the ship "Grand Trianon"

Grantham Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century

  • George Grantham, aged 26, a farm labourer, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "La Hogue" in 1874
  • Annie M. Grantham, aged 24, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "La Hogue" in 1874
  • Ada A. Grantham, aged 4, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "La Hogue" in 1874
  • Maria Grantham, aged 2, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "La Hogue" in 1874
  • William J. Grantham, aged 5 months, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "La Hogue" in 1874


  • Wendy Grantham (b. 1968), American actress and singer
  • George Farley "Boots" Grantham (1900-1954), American former professional Major League Baseball player
  • Donald Grantham (b. 1947), American composer and music educator
  • Admiral Sir Guy Grantham GCB CBE DSO (1900-1992), senior Royal Navy officer, Commander-in- chief, Portsmouth
  • Leslie Michael Grantham (b. 1947), British actor
  • Sir Alexander William George Herder Grantham GCMG (1899-1978), British colonial administrator who governed Hong Kong and Fiji
  • William Grantham (1835-1911), British politician


The motto was originally a war cry or slogan. Mottoes first began to be shown with arms in the 14th and 15th centuries, but were not in general use until the 17th century. Thus the oldest coats of arms generally do not include a motto. Mottoes seldom form part of the grant of arms: Under most heraldic authorities, a motto is an optional component of the coat of arms, and can be added to or changed at will; many families have chosen not to display a motto.

Motto: Honore et amore
Motto Translation: With honour and love.


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  1. ^ Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)

Other References

  1. Crozier, William Armstrong Edition. Crozier's General Armory A Registry of American Families Entitled to Coat Armor. New York: Fox, Duffield, 1904. Print.
  2. Browning, Charles H. Americans of Royal Descent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  3. Hanks, Hodges, Mills and Room. The Oxford Names Companion. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2002. Print. (ISBN 0-19-860561-7).
  4. Bolton, Charles Knowles. Bolton's American Armory. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1964. Print.
  5. Dunkling, Leslie. Dictionary of Surnames. Toronto: Collins, 1998. Print. (ISBN 0004720598).
  6. Zieber, Eugene. Heraldry in America. Philadelphia: Genealogical Publishing Co. Print.
  7. Shirley, Evelyn Philip. Noble and Gentle Men of England Or Notes Touching The Arms and Descendants of the Ancient Knightley and Gentle Houses of England Arranged in their Respective Counties 3rd Edition. Westminster: John Bowyer Nichols and Sons, 1866. Print.
  8. Library of Congress. American and English Genealogies in the Library of Congress. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1967. Print.
  9. Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds. Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8).
  10. Humble, Richard. The Fall of Saxon England. New York: Barnes and Noble, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-88029-987-8).
  11. ...

The Grantham Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Grantham 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 25 May 2014 at 19:58.

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