Frankham History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
- Origins Available:
The vast movement of people that followed the Norman Conquest of England of 1066 brought the Frankham family name to the British Isles. They lived in Norfolk, in the village of Fransham
Early Origins of the Frankham family
The surname Frankham was first found in Norfolk where they held a family seat as Lords of the Manor of the village of Fransham. 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, 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. At the time of the Domesday Book in 1086 Fransham consisted of 3 mills. It is now two villages, Great and Little Fransham.
Important Dates for the Frankham family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Frankham research. Another 98 words (7 lines of text) covering the years 1198, 1273, and 1334 are included under the topic Early Frankham History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Frankham Spelling Variations
A multitude of spelling variations characterize Norman surnames. Many variations occurred because Old and Middle English lacked any definite spelling rules. The introduction of Norman French to England also had a pronounced effect, as did the court languages of Latin and French. Therefore, one person was often referred to by several different spellings in a single lifetime. The various spellings include Fransham, Francham, Frensham, Frenchum, Franchum, Franchem, Franshem, Frencham, Franchomme and many more.
Early Notables of the Frankham family (pre 1700)
More information is included under the topic Early Frankham Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Frankham migration to New Zealand
Emigration to New Zealand followed in the footsteps of the European explorers, such as Captain Cook (1769-70): first came sealers, whalers, missionaries, and traders. By 1838, the British New Zealand Company had begun buying land from the Maori tribes, and selling it to settlers, and, after the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840, many British families set out on the arduous six month journey from Britain to Aotearoa to start a new life. Early immigrants include:
Frankham Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
- Walter Frankham, aged 33, a carpenter, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Lauderdale" in 1874
- Elizabeth Frankham, aged 33, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Lauderdale" in 1874
- Walter James Frankham, aged 11, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Lauderdale" in 1874
- Albert Frankham, aged 9, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Lauderdale" in 1874
- Amy Frankham, aged 7, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Lauderdale" in 1874
- ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
- ^ Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)