Show ContentsBechard History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Bechard is a name that first reached England following the Norman Conquest in 1066. It is a name for a person who was a butcher. [1] So as to confirm this, we found "Rogerus filius Johannis de Burton, de Eton in le Clay, boucher (1343)" [2]

However, the name could also be derived the family's original place of residence, Beaucir, in Calvados, Normandy. [3]

Early Origins of the Bechard family

The surname Bechard was first found in Essex where Robert, John de Burser, Bousser 1285, 1303, Burghcher 1349. These entries were recorded at Bourchier's alias Bouchier's Hall in Aldham, Essex. Continuing early Essex entries, we found: John de Bourchier 1311; Bouchier's Grange in Great Coggeshall (Essex), John de Bousser 1326; Bouchiers Chapel in Tollesbury (Essex), John de Bousser 1328; Bourchier's Hall in Messing (Essex), and John de Busser 1309; Boarstye Farm and Bowser's Hall in Rivenhall (Essex).

"The Bouchers were well-known Bristol merchants in the 16th and 17th centuries, and frequently filled the offices of mayor and sheriff of the city; they were intrepid Royalists, and suffered death in the cause." [4]

Other records of the family were found in the Writs or Parliament of 1300 where Elias le Borcher was listed at that time. The same rolls but listed later included John le Bocher, temp. 1500. The Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls of 1379 listed the Bocher spelling as being more popular at that time as Adam Bocher and Richard Bocher were listed in that rolls. [5]

Early History of the Bechard family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Bechard research. Another 49 words (4 lines of text) covering the years 1066, 1330, 1306, 1312, 1314, 1315, 1317, 1319, 1320, 1467, 1533, 1471, 1632, 1455, 1474, 1461, 1454, 1486, 1660, 1620, 1642, 1648, 1660, 1643, 1642 and 1643 are included under the topic Early Bechard History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Bechard 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 Bowker, Bowcher, Boucher and others.

Early Notables of the Bechard family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was John de Bourchier or Boussier (d. 1330) the English judge, first mentioned as deputed by Robert de Vere, Earl of Oxford, to represent him in the parliament summoned in 1306 for the purpose of granting an aid on the occasion of the Prince of Wales receiving knighthood. In 1312 he was permitted to postpone the assumption of the same rank for three years in consideration of paying a fine of 100s. In 1314-1315 he appears as one of the justices of assize for the counties of Kent, Surrey, and Sussex, and his name...
Another 451 words (32 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Bechard Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Bechard World Ranking

In the United States, the name Bechard is the 17,456th most popular surname with an estimated 2,487 people with that name. [6] However, in Quebec, Canada, the name Bechard is ranked the 882nd most popular surname. [7] And in France, the name Bechard is the 5,454th popular surname with an estimated 1,000 - 1,500 people with that name. [8]

United States Bechard 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 Bechard name or one of its variants:

Bechard Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • James Bechard, aged 35, who arrived in Ohio in 1813 [9]
Bechard Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • David Bechard, aged 23, who arrived in America from Paris, in 1904
  • Joseph Bechard, aged 40, who arrived in America from Lacaore, France, in 1907
  • Paul Bechard, aged 22, who arrived in America, in 1918
  • Clifford Bechard, aged 17, who arrived in America, in 1918

Contemporary Notables of the name Bechard (post 1700) +

  • D. Y. Béchard, Canadian-born, American novelist, winner of the 2007 Commonwealth Writers' Prize for Best First Book
  • Kelly Bechard (b. 1978), Canadian gold medalist ice hockey player, member of the Canadian National Team
  • François Béchard (1830-1897), Canadian politician, Senator for De Lorimier, Quebec (1896-1897)
  • Claude Béchard (1969-2010), Canadian politician and Quebec provincial Cabinet minister, Member of the National Assembly of Quebec (1997-2010)
  • Albert Béchard (1922-2002), Canadian politician and notary, Member of the Canadian Parliament for Bonaventure (1962-1979)

  1. Smith, Eldson Coles, New Dictionary of American Family Names New York: Harper & Row, 1956. Print
  2. Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  3. The Norman People and Their Existing Descendants in the British Dominions and the United States Of America. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0636-X)
  4. Guppy, Henry Brougham, Homes of Family Names in Great Britain. 1890. Print.
  5. Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  6. "What are the 5,000 Most Common Last Names in the U.S.?".,
  7. "The first 1,000 family names by rank, Quebec (in French only)" Institut de la statistique du Quebec,
  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) on Facebook