Show ContentsAldrich History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The many generations and branches of the Aldrich family can all place the origins of their surname with the ancient Anglo-Saxon culture. Their name reveals that an early member worked as a the Old English personal name Aldrich, meaning old ruler, and refers to "a son of Aldrich." [1]

Another source has a different approach to the origin of the name. "These surnames may be local in origin, but usually derive from Old English Ælfric 'elf-ruler' or Æðelric 'noble ruler'. Both survived the Conquest, by which time the first element had often been reduced to Al- or El- and consequently cannot be distinguished. A common post-Conquest form of Æðelric was Ailric or Eilric." [2]

Early Origins of the Aldrich family

The surname Aldrich was first found in the counties of Sussex, Suffolk, and Surrey, where the Aldrich family held a family seat from very early times. The family had the Saxon spellings of Alderich, Ealdric, or possibly Aelfric before the Conquest.

Aldridge is a town in Staffordshire (now the West Midlands) that dates back to the Domesday Book where it was listed as Alrewic and literally means "dwelling or farm among alders" having derived from the Old English word alor + wic. [3]

The parish was originally in the union of Walsall, in the hundred of Offlow, comprised 7,752 acres and was anciently held by Robert, a tenant of William fitzAnsculf and was worth 15 shillings. [4]

In Somerset, William Ailrich was listed there, 1 Edward III (during the first year of Edward III's reign.) [5]

In London, the Calendarium Rotulorum Patentium in Turri Londinensi (1201-1483) lists John filius Aldrech. The Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 include John Aldrich in Cambridgeshire and the Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls of 1379 include a listing for Robertus Aldrech. [1] John Aldryche was Bailiff of Yarmouth in 1469. [6]

Early History of the Aldrich family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Aldrich research. Another 34 words (2 lines of text) covering the years 1647, 1710, 1681, 1687, 1688, 1689, 1566, 1507, 1511 and 1515 are included under the topic Early Aldrich History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Aldrich Spelling Variations

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 Aldrich were recorded, including Aldridge, Aldrich, Alderich, Alderidge, Eldrich, Elderidge, Elderich and many more.

Early Notables of the Aldrich family (pre 1700)

Distinguished members of the family include Henry Aldrich (1647-1710), an English theologian, philosopher and architect who designed All Saints Church, Oxford. "In February 1681, he became canon of Christ Church, and in the following March B.D. and D.D. In 1687 and 1688 he wrote two tracts against Obadiah Walker in defence of Anglican principles; and upon the flight of Massey, the Roman Catholic dean of Christ Church under James II, the vacant deanery was bestowed upon Aldrich. He was installed 17 June 1689, and held the office with much distinction for the rest of his life. " [7] Robert Aldrich or Aldridge...
Another 132 words (9 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Aldrich Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Aldrich Ranking

In the United States, the name Aldrich is the 1,672nd most popular surname with an estimated 17,409 people with that name. [8]

Ireland Migration of the Aldrich family to Ireland

Some of the Aldrich family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 41 words (3 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

United States Aldrich migration to the United States +

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 Aldrich family emigrate to North America:

Aldrich Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • George Aldrich, who arrived in Massachusetts in 1636 [9]
  • George Aldrich who settled in Dorchester, Massachusetts in 1639
  • Henry Aldrich, who settled in Dedham in 1645
  • Henry Aldrich, who arrived in Massachusetts in 1645 [9]
  • Robert Aldrich, who arrived in Massachusetts in 1656 [9]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Aldrich Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Susanna Aldrich, who arrived in Pennsylvania in 1732 [9]
  • Pieter Aldrich, who landed in Pennsylvania in 1732 [9]
Aldrich Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • A G Aldrich, who landed in New Orleans, La in 1813 [9]
  • David Aldrich, who landed in New York in 1835 [9]
  • George Aldrich, who settled in Texas in 1835
  • William Aldrich, who arrived in Mississippi in 1847 [9]
  • Robert G Aldrich, who landed in Mississippi in 1850 [9]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Canada Aldrich migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Aldrich Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • Philip Aldrich, who landed in Canada in 1839
  • J G Aldrich, aged 28, who arrived in Quebec in 1868

Contemporary Notables of the name Aldrich (post 1700) +

  • Nelson Wilmarth Aldrich Jr. (1935-2022), American editor and author from Boston, Massachusetts, best known for his Old Money: The Mythology of Wealth in America (1988) and George, Being George (2008)
  • Charles Thomas Aldrich Jr. (1906-1995), birth name of Gale Gordon, an American character actor perhaps best remembered as Lucille Ball's longtime television foil [10]
  • Robert Aldrich (1918-1983), American two-time Directors Guild of America nominated American film director, writer and producer, best known for his films The Dirty Dozen (1967) and The Flight of the Phoenix (1965)
  • David Aldrich (1907-2002), American artist known for his landscapes and cityscapes
  • Bess Streeter Aldrich (1871-1954), American author
  • Chester Holmes Aldrich (1871-1940), American architect, director of the American Academy in Rome
  • Thomas Bailey Aldrich (1836-1907), American poet, editor, novelist and playwright
  • Nelson Wilmarth Aldrich (1841-1915), American politician, leader of the Republican Party in the Senate (1881 to 1911)
  • Donald N. Aldrich, American fighter pilot and flying ace in the U.S. Marine Corps, during World War II, credited with 20 aerial victories
  • Bailey Aldrich (1907-2002), American politician, U.S. District Judge for Massachusetts, 1954-59; Judge of U.S. Court of Appeals for the 1st Circuit, 1959-72 [11]
  • ... (Another 61 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Suggested Readings for the name Aldrich +

  • The George Aldrich Genealogy, 1605-1971 by Alvin James Aldrich.

  1. Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  2. Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  3. Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
  4. Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
  5. Dickinson, F.H., Kirby's Quest for Somerset of 16th of Edward the 3rd London: Harrison and Sons, Printers in Ordinary to Her Majesty, St, Martin's Lane, 1889. Print.
  6. Rye, Walter, A History of Norfolk. London: Elliot Stock, 62, Paternoster Row, 1885. Print
  7. Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print
  8. "What are the 5,000 Most Common Last Names in the U.S.?".,
  9. Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
  10. Charles Aldrich. (Retrieved 2015, March 27) Charles Aldrich. Retrieved from
  11. The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, October 2) . Retrieved from on Facebook