An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright © 2000 - 2016
The Bledshow surname is a habitational name, originally taken on from a place named Bledisloe in Gloucestershire, derived from the Old English personal name "Bli-ð," and the Old English word "hlaw," meaning "a hill."
The surname Bledshow was first found in Bedfordshire (Old English: Bedanfordscir), located in Southeast-central England, formerly part of the Anglo-Saxon kingdom of Mercia, where they held a family seat as Lords of the Manor. After the Battle of Hastings in 1066, William, Duke of Normandy, having prevailed over King Harold, granted most of Britain to his many victorious Barons. It was not uncommon to find a Baron, or a Bishop, with 60 or more Lordships scattered throughout the country. These he gave to his sons, nephews and other junior lines of his family and they became known as under-tenants. They adopted the Norman system of surnames which identified the under-tenant with his holdings so as to distinguish him from the senior stem of the family. After many rebellious wars between his Barons, Duke William, commissioned a census of all England to determine in 1086, settling once and for all, who held which land. He called the census the Domesday Book,  indicating that those holders registered would hold the land until the end of time. Conjecturally, the surname is descended from the tenant of the lands of Bletsoe, Osbert de Breuil from Hugh de Beauchamp, a Norman Baron, who was recorded in the Domesday Book census of 1086.
The English language only became standardized in the last few centuries. For that reason, spelling variations are common among many Anglo-Norman names. The shape of the English language was frequently changed with the introduction of elements of Norman French, Latin, and other European languages; even the spelling of literate people's names were subsequently modified. Bledshow has been recorded under many different variations, including Bledsoe, Bletshoe, Bledshoe, Bletso, Bledshow, Bletshow, Bledso, Bletsor and many more.
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Bledshow research. Another 151 words (11 lines of text) covering the year 1362 is included under the topic Early Bledshow History in all our PDF Extended History products.
More information is included under the topic Early Bledshow Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.
To escape the uncertainty of the political and religious uncertainty found in England, many English families boarded ships at great expense to sail for the colonies held by Britain. The passages were expensive, though, and the boats were unsafe, overcrowded, and ridden with disease. Those who were hardy and lucky enough to make the passage intact were rewarded with land, opportunity, and social environment less prone to religious and political persecution. Many of these families went on to be important contributors to the young nations of Canada and the United States where they settled. Bledshows were some of the first of the immigrants to arrive in North America: William Bletsoe, who came to Virginia in 1639; Roger Bletsoe, who settled in Maryland in 1641; and John Morgan Bletsoe, who settled in New York in 1820.
The Bledshow Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Bledshow 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 11 October 2011 at 10:21.