Francham History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The Norman Conquest of England in 1066 brought much change to the island nation, including many immigrants with new names. Among these immigrants were the ancestors of the Francham family, who lived in Norfolk, at Great Fransham or Little Fransham, parishes in the union of Mitford and Launditch, hundred of Launditch. Little Fransham's old Hall, "now a farmhouse, contains a room in which Queen Elizabeth is said to have slept one night, when on a tour through Norfolk." [1]

Bother parishes date back to the Domesday Book of 1086 when they were one and known as Frandesham. [2] At this time Fransham consisted of 3 mills.

Early Origins of the Francham family

The surname Francham was first found in Norfolk where they held a family seat as Lords of the Manor of the village of Fransham. The village of Fransham in 1086 was held by Gilbert from William de Warenne, the overlord whose line later became the Dukes of Warwick. Conjecturally, the Fransham name is directly descended from Gilbert, who was probably the son or nephew of William of Warenne. William, Count of Warren in Normandy, was a great friend and trusted companion of Duke William, the Conqueror of England in 1066. He married Gundreda, daughter of Queen Matilda. William, who fought at the Battle of Hastings, was one of the nobles who ruled England when Duke William returned to Normandy from time to time.

Early History of the Francham family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Francham research. Another 98 words (7 lines of text) covering the years 1198, 1273, 1334, 1730, 1810, 1660 and 1743 are included under the topic Early Francham History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Francham Spelling Variations

Before the last few hundred years the English language had no fixed system of spelling rules. For that reason, spelling variations occurred commonly in Anglo Norman surnames. Over the years, many variations of the name Francham were recorded, including Fransham, Francham, Frensham, Frenchum, Franchum, Franchem, Franshem, Frencham, Franchomme and many more.

Early Notables of the Francham family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was John Fransham (1730-1810), English freethinker, son of Thomas and Isidora Fransham. "He showed precocity at an elementary school. He wrote sermons, which the rector of St. George's thought good enough to submit to the dean. The aid of a relative, probably Isaac Fransham (1660-1743), an attorney, enabled him to study...
Another 58 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Francham Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the Francham family

The unstable environment in England at this time caused numerous families to board ships and leave in search of opportunity and freedom from persecution abroad in places like Ireland, Australia, and particularly the New World. The voyage was extremely difficult, however, and only taken at great expense. The cramped conditions and unsanitary nature of the vessels caused many to arrive diseased and starving, not to mention destitute from the enormous cost. Still opportunity in the emerging nations of Canada and the United States was far greater than at home and many went on to make important contributions to the cultures of their adopted countries. An examination of many early immigration records reveals that people bearing the name Francham arrived in North America very early: Stephen Frensham settled in Virginia in 1728; and a Mr Franchomme, who settled in Louisiana in 1719.



  1. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  2. ^ Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)


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