Show ContentsBonsor History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Bonsor is a name of ancient Anglo-Saxon origin and comes from the family once having lived in or around the manor of Bonsall in the county of Derbyshire.

Early Origins of the Bonsor family

The surname Bonsor was first found in Derbyshire at Bonsall, a parish, in the hundred of Wirksworth. [1] The parish dates back to the Domesday Book of 1086 when it was first listed as Bunteshale. [2] At that time, it was shown as "the King's land." "This parish, anciently called Bonteshall, comprises by computation 2338 acres." [1] Literally, the place name means "nook of land of a man called Bunt," from the Old English personal name + "halh." [3] It is noted for its lead mining and there is evidence that the town has been populated since 2000 B.C., one of the few early records of the ancient Britons.

Early History of the Bonsor family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Bonsor research. Another 43 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Bonsor History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Bonsor Spelling Variations

Sound was what guided spelling in the essentially pre-literate Middle Ages, so one person's name was often recorded under several variations during a single lifetime. Also, before the advent of the printing press and the first dictionaries, the English language was not standardized. Therefore, spelling variations were common, even among the names of the most literate people. Known variations of the Bonsor family name include Bonsall, Bonzall, Bonsale and others.

Early Notables of the Bonsor family (pre 1700)

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

United States Bonsor migration to the United States +

For political, religious, and economic reasons, thousands of English families boarded ships for Ireland, Canada, the America colonies, and many of smaller tropical colonies in the hope of finding better lives abroad. Although the passage on the cramped, dank ships caused many to arrive in the New World diseased and starving, those families that survived the trip often went on to make valuable contributions to those new societies to which they arrived. Early immigrants bearing the Bonsor surname or a spelling variation of the name include:

Bonsor Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Jane Bonsor, who landed in New York, NV in 1842 [4]

Canada Bonsor migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Bonsor Settlers in Canada in the 20th Century
  • Mrs. Bonsor, who landed in Saint John, New Brunswick in 1907
  • H Bonsor, who arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick in 1907

Australia Bonsor migration to Australia +

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

Bonsor Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century

Contemporary Notables of the name Bonsor (post 1700) +

  • Sir "Henry" Cosmo Orme Bonsor (1848-1929), 1st Baronet, an English brewer and businessman and politician, Director of the Bank of England, and a Governor of Guy's Hospital
  • Alexander George Bonsor (1851-1907), early English footballer who played for the Wanderers who won the 1872 FA Cup Final
  • Sir Nicholas Cosmo Bonsor DL (1942-2023), 4th Baronet, a British Conservative politician, Member of Parliament for Nantwich from 1979 to 1983, Vice-President of the Standing Council of the Baronetage
  • Sir Bryan Bonsor (1916-1977), 3rd Baronet

The Bonsor 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: Pro patria
Motto Translation: For my country.

  1. Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  2. Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
  3. Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
  4. 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)
  5. State Library of Queensland. (Retrieved 2016, October 27) Asia 1 voyage to Van Diemen's Land, Australia in 1823 with 151 passengers. Retrieved from on Facebook