Show ContentsChard History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

This ancient name derives its name from "Cherde, Cerde, which name is traditionally derived from Cerdic, the West-Saxon king." [1]

Early Origins of the Chard family

The surname Chard was first found in Somerset at Chard, a borough, market-town, and parish, and the head of a union, in the hundred of Kingsbury-East. "This was a place of considerable importance during the heptarchy, and was by the Saxons called Cerdre (subsequently Cherde or Cerde), a name supposed to be derived from Cerdic, the founder of the kingdom of Wessex. In the 14th of Edward I. it was incorporated by Bishop Joslin, who set apart fifty-two acres out of his manor of Cherde" [2]

Another reference claims the Saxons called the place Cerdren [3] in 1065 but was listed three years later in the Domesday Book of 1086 as Cerdre. [4] Literally the place name possibly meant "house or building in rough ground," from the Old English words "ceart" + "aern." [3] [5]

One of the first records of the family was John Chard who was listed in Somerset, 1 Edward III (during the first year of the reign of King Edward III.) [6]

Years later, John ate Charde was listed in the Assize Rolls for Wiltshire in 1281 and later again, Hugh de Cherde was found at Glastonbury, Somerset in 1335. [5]

Early History of the Chard family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Chard research. Another 52 words (4 lines of text) covering the years 1765, 1787, 1802, 1832, 1812 and 1849 are included under the topic Early Chard History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Chard Spelling Variations

Until quite recently, the English language has lacked a definite system of spelling rules. Consequently, Anglo-Saxon surnames are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations. Changes in Anglo-Saxon names were influenced by the evolution of the English language, as it incorporated elements of French, Latin, and other languages. Although Medieval scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded, so it is common to find one person referred to by several different spellings of his surname, even the most literate people varied the spelling of their own names. Variations of the name Chard include Chard, Charde, Chards and others.

Early Notables of the Chard family (pre 1700)

Notables of this surname at this time include: George William Chard, born about 1765. He received his early musical education in the choir of St. Paul's under Robert Hudson, Mus. Bac. In 1787 he became lay clerk of Winchester Cathedral, and some years later in 1802 was appointed organist of...
Another 49 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Chard Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

United States Chard migration to the United States +

Searching for a better life, many English families migrated to British colonies. Unfortunately, the majority of them traveled under extremely harsh conditions: overcrowding on the ships caused the majority of the immigrants to arrive diseased, famished, and destitute from the long journey across the ocean. For those families that arrived safely, modest prosperity was attainable, and many went on to make invaluable contributions to the development of the cultures of the new colonies. Research into the origins of individual families in North America revealed records of the immigration of a number of people bearing the name Chard or a variant listed above:

Chard Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Josuah Chard, who landed in Virginia in 1607 aboard the "Sea Venture" [7]
  • Mr. Joseph Chard, who was aboard the ship "Sea Venture" who wrecked in Bermudas in 1609, they managed to build a new ship to continue to Jamestown in 1610. [8]
  • Mrs. Anne Chard, who arrived in Virginia in 1623 aboard the ship "Bonnie Bess" [7]
Chard Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Pierre chard, aged 30, who landed in Louisiana in 1719 [7]
  • John Chard, who arrived in America in 1765 [7]
  • Rachel and George Chard, who arrived in Pennsylvania in 1773
  • Rachel Chard, aged 10, who landed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1773 [7]
  • Pierre Chard, who arrived in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1799 [7]
Chard Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Edward Chard, aged 26, who landed in New York in 1812 [7]
  • William Chard, who arrived in New York in 1822 [7]
  • William, Chard Jr., who landed in New York in 1822 [7]

Australia Chard migration to Australia +

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

Chard Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Mr. Christopher Chard, British Convict who was convicted in Oxford, Oxfordshire, England for 14 years, transported aboard the "Caledonia" on 5th July 1820, arriving in Tasmania (Van Diemen's Land) [9]
  • Mr. Samuel Chard, (Butson) who was convicted in Kent, England for 7 years, transported aboard the "Bussorah Merchant" on 24th March 1828, arriving in New South Wales, Australia [10]
  • Mr. John Chard, (b. 1814), aged 19, English tailor who was convicted in Bristol, England for 14 years for stealing, transported aboard the "Fairlie" on 14th October 1833, arriving in New South Wales, Australia, he died in 1891 [11]
  • Mr. Robert Chard, (b. 1826), aged 20, English convict who was convicted in Somerset, England for life for burglary, transported aboard the "China" on 45th January 1846, arriving in Norfolk Island, Australia [12]
  • Samuel Chard, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Duke of Bedford" in 1848 [13]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

New Zealand Chard 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:

Chard Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Mrs. Matilda Chard, (b. 1848), aged 26, Cornish settler departing on 22nd May 1874 aboard the ship "St Lawrence" arriving in Lyttelton, Canterbury, New Zealand on 29th August 1874 [14]
  • Mr. William Chard, (b. 1849), aged 25, Cornish miner departing on 22nd May 1874 aboard the ship "St Lawrence" arriving in Lyttelton, Canterbury, New Zealand on 29th August 1874 [14]
  • Mr. Charles Chard, (b. 1855), aged 19, Cornish labourer departing on 2nd May 1874 aboard the ship "Miltiades" arriving in Auckland, New Zealand on 23rd July 1874 [15]

West Indies Chard migration to West Indies +

The British first settled the British West Indies around 1604. They made many attempts but failed in some to establish settlements on the Islands including Saint Lucia and Grenada. By 1627 they had managed to establish settlements on St. Kitts (St. Christopher) and Barbados, but by 1641 the Spanish had moved in and destroyed some of these including those at Providence Island. The British continued to expand the settlements including setting the First Federation in the British West Indies by 1674; some of the islands include Barbados, Bermuda, Cayman Island, Turks and Caicos, Jamaica and Belize then known as British Honduras. By the 1960's many of the islands became independent after the West Indies Federation which existed from 1958 to 1962 failed due to internal political conflicts. After this a number of Eastern Caribbean islands formed a free association. [16]
Chard Settlers in West Indies in the 17th Century
  • Mr. Edward Chard, who was aboard the ship "Sea Venture" who wrecked in Bermudas in 1609, he stayed on the island [8]
  • John Chard who settled in Barbados in 1634

Contemporary Notables of the name Chard (post 1700) +

  • Chester S. Chard (1915-2002), American anthropologist who collaborated with Russian and Japanese scholars to establish the field of circumpolar or Arctic anthropology
  • Lawrence Chard, American coin & bullion dealer
  • George Chard (1765-1849), English organist, born in 1764 or 1765 [17]
  • Danny Chard (b. 1980), English right-handed batsman cricketer
  • Herbert William Chard (1869-1932), English cricketer
  • Phil Chard (b. 1960), English former footballer and manager
  • Thomas S Chard, English poet
  • Colonel John Rouse Merriott Chard (1847-1897), British commander and Victoria Cross recipient, eponym of the John Chard Decoration and the John Chard Medal
  • Geoffrey Chard AM (b. 1930), Australian opera singer, foundation member of the National Opera of New South Wales.
  • Sylvia C Chard, Professor Emeritus in the department of Elementary Education at the University of Alberta
  • ... (Another 1 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

HMS Prince of Wales
  • Mr. Cyril James Chard, British Ordnance Artificer 1st Class, who sailed into battle on the HMS Prince of Wales (1941) and survived the sinking [18]
HMS Repulse
  • Mr. Alewyn Mansel Chard, British Stoker 1st Class, who sailed into battle on the HMS Repulse (1941) and died in the sinking [19]
Senghenydd colliery
  • Mr. Charles Chard (b. 1883), Welsh coal miner from Penyrheol, Caerphilly, Wales who was working at the Senghenydd colliery when there was an explosion on the 14th October 1913; he died
SS Newfoundland
  • Mr. Thomas Chard (b. 1870), Newfoundlander from Bonavista, who on the 30th March 1914 he was part of the Seal Crew of the "SS Newfoundland" leaving the ship to intercept the Stephano which took him to the hunting grounds, he disembarked to begin sealing, but was caught in a thickening storm, attempting to return to the Newfoundland he and the 132 crew made camp for two days the sealers were stranded on the ice in a blizzard attempting to return to the ship, he survived

The Chard 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: Nil desperandum
Motto Translation: Never despairing.

  1. Harrison, Henry, Surnames of the United Kingdom: A Concise Etymological Dictionary Baltimore: Geneological Publishing Company, 2013. Print
  2. Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  3. Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
  4. Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
  5. Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  6. Dickinson, F.H., Kirby's Quest for Somerset of 16th of Edward the 3rd London: Harrison and Sons, Printers in Ordinary to Her Majesty, St, Martin's Lane, 1889. Print.
  7. 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)
  8. Pilgrim Ship's of 1600's Retrieved January 6th 2023, retrieved from
  9. Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 25th November 2020). Retrieved from
  10. Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 5th November 2020). Retrieved from
  11. Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 21st September 2022).
  12. Convict Records of Australia. Retrieved 5th February 2021 from
  13. State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) DUKE OF BEDFORD 1848. Retrieved from
  14. Cornwall Online Parish Clerks. (Retrieved 2018, April 30). Emigrants to Lyttelton 1858-84 [PDF]. Retrieved from
  15. Cornwall Online Parish Clerks. (Retrieved 2018, April 30). Emigrants to Auckland 1872-80 [PDF]. Retrieved from
  17. Wikisource contributors. "Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900." Wikisource . Wikisource , 4 Jun. 2018. Web. 25 Nov. 2019
  18. HMS Prince of Wales Crew members. (Retrieved 2014, April 9) . Retrieved from
  19. HMS Repulse Crew members. (Retrieved 2014, April 9) . Retrieved from on Facebook