Show ContentsBradfield History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Early Origins of the Bradfield family

The surname Bradfield was first found in Suffolk where they held a family seat as Lords of the Manor of Bradfield. 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, [1] indicating that those holders registered would hold the land until the end of time. Hence, conjecturally, the surname is descended from the tenant of the lands of Bradfield held by the Count of Mortain, his man Falk, who was recorded in the Domesday Book census of 1086. It was taxed for 80 goats. The original village is now three separate villages.

Early History of the Bradfield family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Bradfield research. Another 147 words (10 lines of text) covering the years 1182, 1277, 1283, 1510, and 1600 are included under the topic Early Bradfield History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Bradfield Spelling Variations

Spelling variations of this family name include: Bradfield, Bradfeld, Bradfeild, Breadfield and others.

Early Notables of the Bradfield family (pre 1700)

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

Bradfield Ranking

In the United States, the name Bradfield is the 8,000th most popular surname with an estimated 2,487 people with that name. [2]

United States Bradfield migration to the United States +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Bradfield Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • John Bradfield, who arrived in Arkansas in 1893 [3]

Canada Bradfield migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Bradfield Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • Henry Bradfield, who landed in Canada in 1816

Australia Bradfield migration to Australia +

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

Bradfield Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Mr. John Bradfield, English convict who was convicted in Middlesex, England for 7 years, transported aboard the "Baring" in April 1815, arriving in New South Wales, Australia [4]
  • Mr. Thomas Bradfield, British Convict who was convicted in Wiltshire, England for life, transported aboard the "Coromandel" on 27th October 1819, arriving in Tasmania (Van Diemen's Land) [5]
  • William Bradfield, aged 34, a wheelwright, who arrived in South Australia in 1852 aboard the ship "Steadfast" [6]

New Zealand Bradfield 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:

Bradfield Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • R Bradfield, who landed in Wellington, New Zealand in 1840
  • Robert Bradfield, aged 34, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Adelaide" in 1858 [7]
  • Sarah Bradfield, aged 31, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Adelaide" in 1858 [7]
  • Sarah Bradfield, aged 11, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Adelaide" in 1858 [7]

Contemporary Notables of the name Bradfield (post 1700) +

  • Marjorie Adele Blackistone Bradfield (1911-1999), American librarian who worked at the Detroit Public Library and Detroit Public Schools, the first African-American librarian hired at the Detroit Public Library
  • Roger Martin Bradfield (1924-2022), American children's books writer, illustrator, cartoonist, painter, and world traveller
  • Henry Joseph Steele Bradfield (1805-1852), English surgeon and author, born on 18 May 1805 in Derby Street, Westminster, where his father, Thomas Bradfield, was a coal merchant [8]
  • James Dean Bradfield (b. 1969), English rock singer and lead guitarist
  • Mr. Robert Andrew Richard Bradfield M.B.E., British Hydrographic Surveyor, was appointed Member of the Order of the British Empire on 29th December 2018 for services to Navigation and Maritime Safety on the West Coast of Scotland [9]
  • Andrew "Andy" Bradfield (1966-2001), New Zealand computer programmer best known for his work on games for the Atari 8-bit series of computers
  • Gary E Bradfield, Associate Professor of Botany at the University of British Columbia
  • John Ross Bradfield (1899-1983), Canadian mining engineer, president and chief executive officer of Noranda Mines Limited (1956-68)
  • John Job Crew Bradfield (1867-1943), Australian civil engineer, creator of the Bradfield Scheme, an inland irrigation project
  • Charles Bradfield Morrey Jr. (1907-1984), American mathematician who co-developed the Morrey-Campanato space

  1. Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
  2. "What are the 5,000 Most Common Last Names in the U.S.?".,
  3. 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)
  4. Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 16th September 2020). Retrieved from
  5. Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 12th March 2021). Retrieved from
  6. South Australian Register Tuesday 3 February 1852. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) STEADFAST 1852. Retrieved
  7. Shadow Time Settlers (Retrieved 5th November 2010), retrieved from
  8. Wikisource contributors. "Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900." Wikisource . Wikisource , 4 Jun. 2018. Web. 5 Feb. 2019
  9. "Birthday and New Year Honours Lists (1940 to 2019)." Issue 62507, 28 December 2018 | London Gazette, The Gazette, Dec. 2018, on Facebook