Beckforth History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
- Origins Available:
In ancient Anglo-Saxon England, the ancestors of the Beckforth surname lived in Gloucestershire, where they derived their name from the place named Beckford, which was located about six miles south of Tewesbury. The place-name is derived from the Old English terms becca, which means stream, and ford, which refers to a place where a river may be crossed by wading. 
Early Origins of the Beckforth family
The surname Beckforth was first found in Gloucestershire at Beckford, a parish, in the union of Winchcomb, partly in the hundred of Tibaldstone, and partly in the Upper division of the hundred of Tewkesbury, While technically located in Gloucestershire, the parish is on the border with Worcestershire, so some references claim the parish is located there. An ancient Saxon village, the first listing of the pace name was found in 803 as Beccanford.  Beckford is a "parish in Gloucestershire, in which the family first appear in connection with the Abbey of Gloucester in the XII century." 
"Beckford, at the foot of the Bredon Hills, is five miles from Tewkesbury. The original name of the manor was Beccanford, where was an alien Augustinian Priory, attached to Ste. Barbe-en-Auge, on the Dive." 
Early History of the Beckforth family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Beckforth research. Another 74 words (5 lines of text) covering the years 1762, 1769, 1887, 1685, 1643, 1710, 1702, 1672, 1735, 1709, 1770, 1762 and 1769 are included under the topic Early Beckforth History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Beckforth Spelling Variations
It is only in the last few hundred years that the English language has been standardized. For that reason, early Anglo-Saxon surnames like Beckforth are characterized by many spelling variations. As the English language changed and incorporated elements of other European languages, even literate people changed the spelling of their names. The variations of the name Beckforth include: Beckford, Bekford, Beckforth and others.
Early Notables of the Beckforth family (pre 1700)
Notables of this surname at this time include: Major Sir Thomas Beckford (d. 1685), a London clothworker and slopseller who became Sheriff of London; and Colonel Peter Beckford (1643-1710), Governor of Jamaica in 1702; when he died suddenly, he was the wealthiest planter in Jamaica...
Another 45 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Beckforth Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Beckforth family
Many English families tired of political and religious strife left Britain for the new colonies in North America. Although the trip itself offered no relief - conditions on the ships were extremely cramped, and many travelers arrived diseased, starving, and destitute - these immigrants believed the opportunities that awaited them were worth the risks. Once in the colonies, many of the families did indeed prosper and, in turn, made significant contributions to the culture and economies of the growing colonies. An inquiry into the early roots of North American families has revealed a number of immigrants bearing the name Beckforth or a variant listed above: John Beckford who settled in Jamaica in 1774; Edward Beckford who settled in Jamaica in 1661; Elizabeth Beckford settled in Maryland in 1677; and the aforementioned Peter Beckford who arrived in Jamaica in 1690. In Newfoundland, Robert Beckford was a boat keeper of St. John's in 1681.
Related Stories +
The Beckforth Motto +
The motto was originally a war cry or slogan. Mottoes first began to be shown with arms in the 14th and 15th centuries, but were not in general use until the 17th century. Thus the oldest coats of arms generally do not include a motto. Mottoes seldom form part of the grant of arms: Under most heraldic authorities, a motto is an optional component of the coat of arms, and can be added to or changed at will; many families have chosen not to display a motto.
Motto: De Dieu Tout
Motto Translation: From God everything.
- ^ Hanks, Patricia and Flavia Hodges, A Dictionary of Surnames. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988. Print. (ISBN 0-19-211592-8)
- ^ Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
- ^ Lowe, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
- ^ Oliver, George, Collections Illustrating the History of the Catholic Religion in the Counties of Cornwall, Devon, Dorset, Somerset, Wilts, and Gloucester London: Charles Dolman, 61, New Bond Street, 1857. Print