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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright 2000 - 2016


The name Barfoot is part of the ancient legacy of the early Norman inhabitants that arrived in England after the Norman Conquest of 1066. Barfoot was a Norman name used for a person who was in the habit of going without shoes. Friars, pilgrims, and people doing penance often went shoeless. The Barford(e) variation was likely derived from one of the many places in England so named in Hampshire, Norfolk, Warwickshire and Bedfordshire.

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The surname Barfoot was first found in various counties and shires throughout Britain. Some of the first records of the name appears in the Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 and they include: Norman Barfot in Lincolnshire; Robert Barefot in Oxfordshire; and Alan Barefot in Cambridgeshire. [1] Henry de Bereford was listed in the Pipe Rolls of Gloucestershire in 1204 and in Yorkshire, William de Bereford was listed there in 1325 and later John Berford was listed there in 1419. [2]

It is only in the last few hundred years that the English language has been standardized. For that reason, Anglo-Norman surnames like Barfoot are characterized by many spelling variations. Scribes and monks in the Middle Ages spelled names they sounded, so it is common to find several variations that refer to a single person. As the English language changed and incorporated elements of other European languages such as Norman French and Latin, even literate people regularly changed the spelling of their names. The variations of the name Barfoot include Barefoot, Barfoot, Barfitt, Barfit, Barford, Barefield, Barefred, Barefoote and many more.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Barfoot research. Another 257 words (18 lines of text) covering the years 1180, 1400, 1655, 1688, 1685 and 1686 are included under the topic Early Barfoot History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Another 33 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Barfoot Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Faced with the chaos present in England at that time, many English families looked towards the open frontiers of the New World with its opportunities to escape oppression and starvation. People migrated to North America, as well as Australia and Ireland in droves, paying exorbitant rates for passages in cramped, unsafe ships. Many of the settlers did not make the long passage alive, but those who did see the shores of North America were welcomed with great opportunity. Many of the families that came from England went on to make essential contributions to the emerging nations of Canada and the United States. Some of the first immigrants to cross the Atlantic and come to North America carried the name Barfoot, or a variant listed above:

Barfoot Settlers in United States in the 17th Century


  • John Barfoot, who landed in Maryland in 1665

Barfoot Settlers in United States in the 18th Century


  • Sarah Barfoot, who arrived in Virginia in 1714

Barfoot Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century


  • George Barfoot, settled in Polls Island, Newfoundland in 1836

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  • Second Lieutenant Van T Barfoot, American officer awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor in 1944
  • Stuart Barfoot (b. 1975), English footballer
  • Joan Barfoot (b. 1946), Canadian novelist
  • Bylde Barfoot (1891-1971), Major League Baseball player who played 25 years in professional baseball
  • Chris Barfoot (b. 1966), British actor, writer/director and producer of film productions
  • Most Rev. Walter Barfoot, Primate of the Anglican Church of Canada (19501959)


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  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)

Other References

  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. 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.
  3. Dunkling, Leslie. Dictionary of Surnames. Toronto: Collins, 1998. Print. (ISBN 0004720598).
  4. Elster, Robert J. International Who's Who. London: Europa/Routledge. Print.
  5. Bradford, William. History of Plymouth Plantation 1620-1647 Edited by Samuel Eliot Morrison 2 Volumes. New York: Russell and Russell, 1968. Print.
  6. Crispin, M. Jackson and Leonce Mary. Falaise Roll Recording Prominent Companions of William Duke of Normandy at the Conquest of England. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  7. Humble, Richard. The Fall of Saxon England. New York: Barnes and Noble, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-88029-987-8).
  8. Filby, P. William and Mary K Meyer. Passenger and Immigration Lists Index in Four Volumes. Detroit: Gale Research, 1985. Print. (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8).
  9. Hanks, Hodges, Mills and Room. The Oxford Names Companion. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2002. Print. (ISBN 0-19-860561-7).
  10. Fairbairn. Fairbain's book of Crests of the Families of Great Britain and Ireland, 4th Edition 2 volumes in one. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1968. Print.
  11. ...

The Barfoot Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Barfoot 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 November 2015 at 08:30.

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