Show ContentsBeacham History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The name Beacham arrived in England after the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Beacham family lived in Bedfordshire, Buckingham, and Hertfordshire. The geographical roots of the name, however, were established prior to the family's presence in Britain, and stem from the Old French Beauchamps, which refers to towns of that name in Manche and Somme.

Early Origins of the Beacham family

The surname Beacham was first found in Bedfordshire, Buckingham, and Hertford, where the name was "introduced into England at the Norman Conquest by Hugo de Beauchamp, or de Bello Campo, to whom William [the Conqueror] gave 43 lordships, chiefly in the county of Bedford. " [1]

Linslade in Buckinghamshire has a long-time association with the family. "This place in the reign of Henry III. belonged to William de Beauchamp [(d. 1260)], to whom, in 1251, that monarch granted the privilege of a market on Thursday, and a fair on Lady-day to continue for eight days." [2]

Roothing-Beauchamp, a parish, in the union and hundred of Ongar, S. division of the county of Essex " takes the affix to its name from William Beauchamp, proprietor of the manor in 1262." [2]

Another branch was found at early times in the parish of Shrawley in Worcestershire. "This place belonged to Ralph de Todeni, who was standardbearer to William at the battle of Hastings, and whose family held the lands till the time of Edward II., when they passed to the family of Guy Beauchamp, Earl of Warwick." [2]

Also in Worcestershire, a branch of the family was found at Bengeworth. "The manor [of Bengeworth] anciently belonged to the Beauchamp family, whose baronial castle, situated near the bridge, was in the twelfth century destroyed by William d'Anville, abbot of Evesham, in retaliation for depredations committed by the owner on his monastery." [2]

Walter de Beauchamp (d. 1236), was an English judge, son and heir of William de Beauchamp, Lord of Elmley, Worcester, and hereditary castellan of Worcester and sheriff of the county. [3]

Robert de Beauchamp (d. 1252), was an early English judge, a minor at the death of his father, Robert de Beauchamp, Lord of Hatch, Somerset, in 1211-1212. "Adhering to John, he was appointed constable of Oxford and sheriff of the county towards the close of 1215, and received grants of land for his services to the king. " [3]

Guy de Beauchamp , Earl of Warwick (d. 1315), was Lord Ordainer and succeeded his father, William, Earl of Warwick, the grandson of Walter de Beauchamp.

Richard de Beauchamp, Earl of Warwick (1382-1439), was "a brave and chivalrous warrior in an age of chivalry, of an ancient family, whose ancestry was traced to the legendary Guy of Warwick, the son of Thomas, Earl of Warwick." [3]

Early History of the Beacham family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Beacham research. Another 69 words (5 lines of text) covering the years 1338, 1343, 1369, 1392, 1401, 1411, 1445, 1592 and 1655 are included under the topic Early Beacham History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Beacham Spelling Variations

Anglo-Norman names tend to be marked by an enormous number of spelling variations. This is largely due to the fact that Old and Middle English lacked any spelling rules when Norman French was introduced in the 11th century. The languages of the English courts at that time were French and Latin. These various languages mixed quite freely in the evolving social milieu. The final element of this mix is that medieval scribes spelled words according to their sounds rather than any definite rules, so a name was often spelled in as many different ways as the number of documents it appeared in. The name was spelled Beauchamp, Beauchamps, Beacham, Beecham and others.

Early Notables of the Beacham family

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was the Earls of Warwick, such as Thomas de Beauchamp, 11th Earl of Warwick (d. 1369), who was an English nobleman and a military commander during the Hundred Years' War; Thomas de Beauchamp, 12th Earl of Warwick, (1338-1401), English medieval nobleman, and one of the primary opponents of Richard II, son of Thomas de Beauchamp, 11th Earl...
Another 64 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Beacham Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Beacham Ranking

In the United States, the name Beacham is the 11,111st most popular surname with an estimated 2,487 people with that name. [4]

United States Beacham migration to the United States +

Because of the political and religious discontent in England, families began to migrate abroad in enormous numbers. Faced with persecution and starvation at home, the open frontiers and generally less oppressive social environment of the New World seemed tantalizing indeed to many English people. The trip was difficult, and not all made it unscathed, but many of those who did get to Canada and the United States made important contributions to the young nations in which they settled. Some of the first North American settlers with Beacham name or one of its variants:

Beacham Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Robert Beacham, who arrived in Virginia in 1653 [5]
  • John Beacham, who settled in New England in 1698
Beacham Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • William Beacham, who arrived in Virginia in 1706 [5]
  • John Beacham, who landed in Virginia in 1713 [5]
  • John Beacham, who arrived in Maryland in 1725
Beacham Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • James Beacham, who arrived in New York in 1839 [5]
Beacham Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • George Henry Beacham, aged 18, who settled in America from Tipton, in 1905
  • Emma Beacham, aged 59, who immigrated to the United States from Leigh, England, in 1911
  • J. W. Beacham, aged 36, who landed in America from Berlin, Germany, in 1912
  • Arthur Conway Beacham, aged 42, who settled in America from Redditch, England, in 1923
  • Edward Norman Beacham, aged 38, who landed in America from Portsmouth, England, in 1924

Canada Beacham migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Beacham Settlers in Canada in the 20th Century
  • Gertrude Beacham, aged 26, who settled in Pickering, Canada, in 1914

Australia Beacham migration to Australia +

Emigration to Australia followed the First Fleets of convicts, tradespeople and early settlers. Early immigrants include:

Beacham Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Miss Lucretia Beacham who was convicted in Winchester, Hampshire, England for 10 years, transported aboard the "Cadet" on 10th November 1848, arriving in Tasmania (Van Diemen's Land) [6]
  • Miss Ann Beacham who was convicted in Bridgewater, Somerset, England for 10 years, transported aboard the "Emma Eugenia" on 25th October 1850, arriving in Tasmania (Van Diemen's Land) [7]
  • Mark Beacham, aged 24, a smith, who arrived in South Australia in 1855 aboard the ship "Mallard" [8]
  • Aguila Beacham, aged 20, who arrived in South Australia in 1858 aboard the ship "Utopia"

New Zealand Beacham migration to New Zealand +

Emigration to New Zealand followed in the footsteps of the European explorers, such as Captain Cook (1769-70): first came sealers, whalers, missionaries, and traders. By 1838, the British New Zealand Company had begun buying land from the Maori tribes, and selling it to settlers, and, after the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840, many British families set out on the arduous six month journey from Britain to Aotearoa to start a new life. Early immigrants include:

Beacham Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Isaac Beacham, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Avalanche" in 1858
  • Elizabeth Beacham, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Avalanche" in 1858
  • Henry Beacham, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Avalanche" in 1858
  • Alfred Beacham, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Avalanche" in 1858
  • Louise Beacham, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Avalanche" in 1858

West Indies Beacham migration to West Indies +

The British first settled the British West Indies around 1604. They made many attempts but failed in some to establish settlements on the Islands including Saint Lucia and Grenada. By 1627 they had managed to establish settlements on St. Kitts (St. Christopher) and Barbados, but by 1641 the Spanish had moved in and destroyed some of these including those at Providence Island. The British continued to expand the settlements including setting the First Federation in the British West Indies by 1674; some of the islands include Barbados, Bermuda, Cayman Island, Turks and Caicos, Jamaica and Belize then known as British Honduras. By the 1960's many of the islands became independent after the West Indies Federation which existed from 1958 to 1962 failed due to internal political conflicts. After this a number of Eastern Caribbean islands formed a free association. [9]
Beacham Settlers in West Indies in the 17th Century
  • James Beacham, who arrived in Barbados in 1685

Contemporary Notables of the name Beacham (post 1700) +

  • Braxton Beacham (1864-1924), American politician, Mayor of Orlando, Florida (1902)
  • Travis Beacham (b. 1980), American screenwriter, known for his work on Pacific Rim (2013) Clash of the Titans (2010) and Dog Days of Summer (2007)
  • Joseph William Beacham (1874-1958), American football college player and coach, head football coach at Cornell University in 1896
  • John R. Beacham, American politician, Member of Florida State Senate 35th District, 1947 [10]
  • George B. Beacham, American Democratic Party politician, Alternate Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Ohio, 1912 [10]
  • C. B. Beacham, American Republican politician, Alternate Delegate to Republican National Convention from Georgia, 1912 [10]
  • Stephanie Beacham (b. 1947), English television, film and theatre actress
  • Albert John "Jack" Beacham (1902-1982), English footballer from Birmingham, England

  1. Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  2. Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  3. Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print
  4. "What are the 5,000 Most Common Last Names in the U.S.?".,
  5. 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)
  6. Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 17th November 2020). Retrieved from
  7. Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 7th April 2022).
  8. South Australian Register Thursday 26th April 1855. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) Mallard 1855. Retrieved
  10. The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, October 26) . Retrieved from on Facebook