Frankham History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

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, 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 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. 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 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, 1334, 1730, 1810, 1660 and 1743 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)

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 Frankham Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


New Zealand 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.)


  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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