Bayforthe History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The Bayforthe name has descended through the generations from the ancient Anglo-Saxon culture. Their name comes from having lived near a ford, a shallow place in a river or stream which could be crossed by wading. The surname Bayforthe is derived from the Old English words bi, which means by, and ford, which means ford, collectively "ford near the river-bend."[1]. The surname Bayforthe may also be derived from residence in the settlement of Byford in Hertfordshire. [2]

Early Origins of the Bayforthe family

The surname Bayforthe was first found in Herefordshire at Byford, a parish, in the union of Weobley, hundred of Grimsworth. [3]

The name is derived from Beeford or Beeforth (Buiforde in the Domesday Book) [4] in Holderness in the East Riding of Yorkshire, on the east coast of England. Baldwin de Biford, between 1182 and 1189, "gave as much land on each side of their grange on the moor as was equal to the previous grant of Acer de Biford to Beverley Abbey; Nicholas, his son, gave an oxgang and a toft in Beeford; and Stephen, son of Thomas de Biford, the same." [5]

Following this early entry, we must look to Essex for the next registered entry for the family. For it is there that Geoffrey de Biford was listed in the Feet of Fines for 1222-1223. Later, again in Essex, John Byfordim was listed in the Feet of Fines for 1381. [2]

Early History of the Bayforthe family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Bayforthe research. Another 75 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Bayforthe History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Bayforthe Spelling Variations

Only recently has spelling become standardized in the English language. As the English language evolved in the Middle Ages, the spelling of names changed also. The name Bayforthe has undergone many spelling variations, including Biford, Biforde, Byford, Byforde, Bifford, Byfford, Biffard, Biffort, Byfford and many more.

Early Notables of the Bayforthe family (pre 1700)

More information is included under the topic Early Bayforthe Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the Bayforthe family

To escape the unstable social climate in England of this time, many families boarded ships for the New World with the hope of finding land, opportunity, and greater religious and political freedom. Although the voyages were expensive, crowded, and difficult, those families that arrived often found greater opportunities and freedoms than they could have experienced at home. Many of those families went on to make significant contributions to the rapidly developing colonies in which they settled. Early North American records indicate many people bearing the name Bayforthe were among those contributors: William Byford who arrived in Philadelphia in 1880; Thomas, William, and Martha Byford, arrived in Barbados in 1664; and later transferred to the mainland in Virginia.



  1. ^ Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
  2. ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  3. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  4. ^ Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
  5. ^ Cleveland, Dutchess of The Battle Abbey Roll with some Account of the Norman Lineages. London: John Murray, Abermarle Street, 1889. Print. Volume 3 of 3


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