Cowder History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The name Cowder was carried to England in the enormous movement of people that followed the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Cowder family lived in Berkshire. The name, however, refers to the area of Cordray, in Eure, Normandy, where the family lived prior to the Norman Conquest of England in 1066. "Benedict de Coudray was witness to a charter of Roger de Menilwarin to Deulacresse Abbey (Mon. ii.) and Fulco de Coudray held one fee from Abingdon Abbey." [1]

Early Origins of the Cowder family

The surname Cowder was first found in the Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 where John de Coudray (no county) was listed. A few years later, the Writs of Parliament listed William de Coudraye, 1307. [2]

Early History of the Cowder family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Cowder research. Another 100 words (7 lines of text) covering the years 1618, 1619, 1588, 1664, 1616, 1684, 1616, 1600, 1577, 1590 and 1530 are included under the topic Early Cowder History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Cowder Spelling Variations

Endless spelling variations are a prevailing characteristic of Norman surnames. Old and Middle English lacked any definite spelling rules, and the introduction of Norman French added an unfamiliar ingredient to the English linguistic stew. French and Latin, the languages of the court, also influenced spellings. Finally, Medieval scribes generally spelled words according to how they sounded, so one person was often referred to by different spellings in different documents. The name has been spelled Cowdrey, Cowdray, Cowderey, Cowderoy, Corderoy, Cordroy, Cowdroy, Cowdry, Cowdery and many more.

Early Notables of the Cowder family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Abbott Monsire Cowdrey; and Daniel Cawdry (Cawdrey) (1588-1664), an English clergyman, member of the Westminster Assembly. He was the youngest son of Robert Cawdry. [3] Zachary Cawdry (1616-1684), author of the 'Discourse of Patronage,' was born in 1616 at Melton Mowbray, of which town his father, also called Zachary, was vicar. [3] Jeremy Corderory (fl. 1600), was an English divine, "the son of a Wiltshire gentleman. He was sent about 1577...
Another 76 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Cowder Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the Cowder family

To escape the political and religious persecution within England at the time, many English families left for the various British colonies abroad. The voyage was extremely difficult, though, and the cramped, dank ships caused many to arrive in the New World diseased and starving. But for those who made it, the trip was most often worth it. Many of the families who arrived went on to make valuable contributions to the emerging nations of Canada and the United States. An inquiry into the early roots of North American families reveals a number of immigrants bearing the name Cowder or a variant listed above: William Cowdrey who settled in Lynn Massachusetts in 1630; Anne Cowdrey settled in Boston Massachusetts in 1763; with her three children; William Cowdery settled in Virginia in 1656..



  1. ^ The Norman People and Their Existing Descendants in the British Dominions and the United States Of America. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0636-X)
  2. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  3. ^ Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print


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