Show ContentsCranfield History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The ancestors of the Cranfield family lived among the ancient Anglo-Saxon culture of Britain. Cranfield was a habitational name, taken on from a place in Bedfordshire named Cranfield, [1] derived the from Old English words "cran," or "crane" meaning "open," and "feld," meaning a "field." [2]

Early Origins of the Cranfield family

The surname Cranfield was first found in Bedfordshire (Old English: Bedanfordscir), located in Southeast-central England. [3] [4] The ancient Latin source "Testa de Nevill, sive Liber Feodorum" compiled in the reigns of Henry III - Edward I, listed Philippa de Cranefeld, Oxfordshire. [5] The Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 listed: Alexander de Crannefeld in Huntingdonshire. [6]

Alternatively the name could have originated in Cranford, a parish, in the union of Kettering, hundred of Huxloe in Northamptonshire. In this case, the source "Testa de Nevill, sive Liber Feodorum" lists John de Cranniford and Ralph de Craneford, as the first on record. [5] Later the Hundredorum Rolls listed: Geoffrey de Cranford in Devon; John de Cranford in Leicestershire; and Richard de Cranford in Buckinghamshire. [6]

Early History of the Cranfield family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Cranfield research. Another 84 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1575, 1592, 1621, 1625, 1645, 1651, 1657, 1674, 1675, 1680, 1682, 1685 and 1696 are included under the topic Early Cranfield History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Cranfield Spelling Variations

One relatively recent invention that did much to standardize English spelling was the printing press. However, before its invention even the most literate people recorded their names according to sound rather than spelling. The spelling variations under which the name Cranfield has appeared include Cranfield, Cranefield and others.

Early Notables of the Cranfield family

Distinguished members of the family include

  • Lionel Cranfield, 1st Earl of Middlesex (1575-1645), English merchant and nobleman, Lord High Treasurer in 1621; James Cranford (c.1592-1657), an English Presbyterian clergyman, active as a licenser o...

United States Cranfield migration to the United States +

At this time, the shores of the New World beckoned many English families that felt that the social climate in England was oppressive and lacked opportunity for change. Thousands left England at great expense in ships that were overcrowded and full of disease. A great portion of these settlers never survived the journey and even a greater number arrived sick, starving, and without a penny. The survivors, however, were often greeted with greater opportunity than they could have experienced back home. These English settlers made significant contributions to those colonies that would eventually become the United States and Canada. An examination of early immigration records and passenger ship lists revealed that people bearing the name Cranfield arrived in North America very early:

Cranfield Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Mr. Edward Cranfield, who left England and arrived in Maryland in 1634 aboard the ship "Ark and Dove" [7]
  • Edward Cranfield, aged 18, who arrived in Virginia in 1634 aboard the ship "Bonaventure" coming via St. Domingo [7]
  • Mrs. Anne Cranfield, aged 18, who arrived in Virginia in 1634 aboard the ship "Bonaventure" coming via St. Domingo
  • Thomas Cranfield, aged 14, who arrived in Virginia in 1635 aboard the ship "Transport" [7]
  • Alice and John Cranfield, who settled in New England in 1684
Cranfield Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Henry Cranfield, who settled in Virginia in 1721
  • William Cranfield, who arrived in Mississippi in 1799 [7]

Canada Cranfield migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Cranfield Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • John Cranfield, who arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick in 1833
  • John Cranfield, aged 26, a gentleman, who arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick in 1833 aboard the ship "Legatus" from London, England

Australia Cranfield migration to Australia +

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

Cranfield Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Mr. William Cranfield, English convict who was convicted in Buckinghamshire, England for 14 years, transported aboard the "Aurora" on 18th June 1835, arriving in Tasmania (Van Diemen's Land) [8]
  • John Cranfield a brickmaker, who arrived in Kangaroo Island aboard the ship "Emma" in 1836 [9]
  • Rachel Cranfield, who arrived in Kangaroo Island aboard the ship "Emma" in 1836 [9]
  • Mr. William Cranfield, English convict who was convicted in Essex, England for 14 years, transported aboard the "Barossa" on 9th May 1844, arriving in Tasmania (Van Diemen's Land) [10]

West Indies Cranfield 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. [11]
Cranfield Settlers in West Indies in the 17th Century
  • Francis Cranfield, who settled in Barbados in 1657

Contemporary Notables of the name Cranfield (post 1700) +

  • Hamish Cranfield, American actor
  • Pat Cranfield, American stuntman
  • Frankie Cranfield, English watercolor artist
  • Lionel Montague "Monty" Cranfield (1909-1993), English first-class cricketer for Gloucestershire between 1934 and 1951
  • Lionel Lord Cranfield (1883-1968), English first-class cricketer for Gloucestershire and Somerset between 1903 and 1922
  • Ernest Cranfield Tedder (1915-1972), English cricketer

  1. Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  2. Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
  3. Guppy, Henry Brougham, Homes of Family Names in Great Britain. 1890. Print.
  4. Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  5. Testa de Nevill or "Liber Feodorum" or "Book of Fees," thought to have been written by Ralph de Nevill, for King John (1199–1216)
  6. Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  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. Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 20th August 2020). Retrieved from
  9. State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) Emma. Retrieved from
  10. Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 24th September 2020). Retrieved from
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