Elsom History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
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Early Origins of the Elsom family
The surname Elsom was first found in Lincolnshire where they held a family seat as Lords of the Manor. After the Battle of Hastings in 1066, William, Duke of Normandy, having prevailed over King Harold, granted most of Britain to his many victorious Barons. It was not uncommon to find a Baron, or a Bishop, with 60 or more Lordships scattered throughout the country. These he gave to his sons, nephews and other junior lines of his family and they became known as under-tenants. They adopted the Norman system of surnames which identified the under-tenant with his holdings so as to distinguish him from the senior stem of the family. After many rebellious wars between his Barons, Duke William, commissioned a census of all England to determine in 1086, settling once and for all, who held which land. He called the census the Domesday Book,  indicating that those holders registered would hold the land until the end of time. Hence, conjecturally, the surname is descended from the tenant of the village and lands of Elsham, held by Ilbert from the Bishop Bayeux, who was recorded in the Domesday Book census of 1086.
Early History of the Elsom family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Elsom research. Another 68 words (5 lines of text) covering the years 1273, 1700, 1705 and 1700 are included under the topic Early Elsom History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Elsom Spelling Variations
Multitudes of spelling variations are a hallmark of Anglo Norman names. Most of these names evolved in the 11th and 12th century, in the time after the Normans introduced their own Norman French language into a country where Old and Middle English had no spelling rules and the languages of the court were French and Latin. To make matters worse, medieval scribes spelled words according to sound, so names frequently appeared differently in the various documents in which they were recorded. The name was spelled Elsham, Alsham, Elsom, Elsome, Yesom, Elsam and many more.
Early Notables of the Elsom family (pre 1700)
Another 44 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Elsom Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Elsom family
Because of this political and religious unrest within English society, many people decided to immigrate to the colonies. Families left for Ireland, North America, and Australia in enormous numbers, traveling at high cost in extremely inhospitable conditions. The New World in particular was a desirable destination, but the long voyage caused many to arrive sick and starving. Those who made it, though, were welcomed by opportunities far greater than they had known at home in England. Many of these families went on to make important contributions to the emerging nations of Canada and the United States. Analysis of immigration records indicates that some of the first North American immigrants bore the name Elsom or a variant listed above: the name represented in many forms and recorded from the mid 17th century in the great migration from Europe. Migrants settled in the eastern seaboard from Newfoundland, to Maine, to Virginia, the Carolinas, and to the islands..
Historic Events for the Elsom family +
- Walter Joseph Elsom (d. 1945), British Able Seaman aboard the HMS Dorsetshire when she was struck by air bombers and sunk; he died in the sinking 
Related Stories +