Show ContentsCranforth History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The ancestors of the Cranforth family lived among the ancient Anglo-Saxon culture of Britain. Cranforth 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 Cranforth family

The surname Cranforth 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 Cranforth family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Cranforth 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 Cranforth History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Cranforth Spelling Variations

Until the dictionary, an invention of only the last few hundred years, the English language lacked any comprehensive system of spelling rules. Consequently, spelling variations in names are frequently found in early Anglo-Saxon and later Anglo-Norman documents. One person's name was often spelled several different ways over a lifetime. The recorded variations of Cranforth include Cranfield, Cranefield and others.

Early Notables of the Cranforth 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 of theological publications under the Commonwealth; James Cranfield, 2nd Earl of Middlesex (1621-1651), an English politician; Lionel Cranfield, 3rd Earl of...
Another 53 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Cranforth Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the Cranforth family

Thousands of English families boarded ships sailing to the New World in the hope of escaping the unrest found in England at this time. Although the search for opportunity and freedom from persecution abroad took the lives of many because of the cramped conditions and unsanitary nature of the vessels, the opportunity perceived in the growing colonies of North America beckoned. Many of the settlers who survived the journey went on to make important contributions to the transplanted cultures of their adopted countries. The Cranforth were among these contributors, for they have been located in early North American records: Edward and Anne Cranfield and their three sons, who came to Virginia in 1634; Peter Cranfeild, who came to Virginia in 1638; Francis Cranfield, who came to Barbados in 1657.



  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)


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