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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright © 2000 - 2016


The lineage of the name Downham begins with the Anglo-Saxon tribes in Britain. It is a result of when they lived in the parish of Dunham, in the county of Norfolk. The place-name is made up of two old English elements: dun, which is a word for hill; and ham, which means home. The translation of the name is home on the hill.

Downham Early Origins



The surname Downham was first found in Norfolk at Downham Market, often referred to as Downham, a town and civil parish. The place dates back to c. 1050 and was listed later in 1086 in the Domesday Book as Dunham. However, there are several more listings of the place name including Little Downham in Cambridgeshire, Downham, Lancashire and Downham, Essex. Wilmslow in Cheshire was an ancient family seat for the family. "The church is a handsome and very ancient structure in the decorated and later English styles, with a square tower; it comprises a nave, chancel, and two aisles, of which the east end of one and the west end of the other are inclosed as sepulchral chapels, for the families of Dunham and Trafford." [1]CITATION[CLOSE]
Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
Downham Estate is a housing estate in Downham, south east London named in honour of Lord Downham, who was chairman of the London County Council between 1919-1920. Downham Hall is an English country house in Downham, Lancashire, but this estate was never held by anyone with the family name.

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Downham Spelling Variations


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Downham Spelling Variations



Only recently has spelling become standardized in the English language. As the English language evolved in the Middle Ages, the spelling of names changed also. The name Downham has undergone many spelling variations, including Dunham, Dunnam, Downham, Dounham, Downnam and others.

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Downham Early History


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Downham Early History



This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Downham research. Another 305 words (22 lines of text) covering the years 1190, 1332, 1511, 1577, 1561 and 1577 are included under the topic Early Downham History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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Downham Early Notables (pre 1700)


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Downham Early Notables (pre 1700)



Another 16 words (1 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Downham Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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Downham In Ireland


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Downham In Ireland



Some of the Downham family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 37 words (3 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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The Great Migration


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The Great Migration



To escape the unstable social climate in England of this time, many families boarded ships for the New World with the hope of finding land, opportunity, and greater religious and political freedom. Although the voyages were expensive, crowded, and difficult, those families that arrived often found greater opportunities and freedoms than they could have experienced at home. Many of those families went on to make significant contributions to the rapidly developing colonies in which they settled. Early North American records indicate many people bearing the name Downham were among those contributors:

Downham Settlers in United States in the 17th Century

  • John Downham, who landed in Virginia in 1665
  • William Downham, who landed in Virginia in 1666
  • John Downham, who arrived in Plymouth, Massachusetts in 1668

Downham Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century

  • Thomas Downham, aged 23, a gardener, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Collingwood" in 1875

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Contemporary Notables of the name Downham (post 1700)


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Contemporary Notables of the name Downham (post 1700)



  • E. Ethebert Downham, American politician, Mayor of Alexandria, Virginia, 1887-91; Defeated, 1878
  • Noel Y. Downham, British FIDS meteorological assistant at Hope Bay, Falkland Islands, eponym of Downham Peak, Antarctica
  • Jenny Downham (b. 1964), British novelist and an ex-actor, nominated for the 2008 Carnegie Medal and the 2008 Booktrust Teenage Prize

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Downham Historic Events


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Downham Historic Events




HMS Prince of Wales

  • Mr. James Arthur  Downham, British Ordinary Seaman, who sailed in to battle on the HMS Prince of Wales and survived the sinking

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Downham Family Crest Products


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Downham Family Crest Products




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See Also


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See Also




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Citations


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Citations



  1. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.

Other References

  1. Samuelsen, W. David. New York City Passenger List Manifests Index 1820 - 1824. North Salt Lake, Utah: Accelerated Indexing Systems International, 1986. Print.
  2. Virkus, Frederick A. Ed. Immigrant Ancestors A List of 2,500 Immigrants to America Before 1750. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1964. Print.
  3. Chadwick, Nora Kershaw and J.X.W.P Corcoran. The Celts. London: Penguin, 1790. Print. (ISBN 0140212116).
  4. Shirley, Evelyn Philip. Noble and Gentle Men of England Or Notes Touching The Arms and Descendants of the Ancient Knightley and Gentle Houses of England Arranged in their Respective Counties 3rd Edition. Westminster: John Bowyer Nichols and Sons, 1866. Print.
  5. 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).
  6. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  7. Bowman, George Ernest. The Mayflower Reader A Selection of Articales from The Mayflower Descendent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  8. Bradford, William. History of Plymouth Plantation 1620-1647 Edited by Samuel Eliot Morrison 2 Volumes. New York: Russell and Russell, 1968. Print.
  9. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  10. Ingram, Rev. James. Translator Anglo-Saxon Chronicle 1823. Print.
  11. ...

The Downham Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Downham Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

This page was last modified on 29 July 2016 at 06:02.

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