Gilliam History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms 

The vast movement of people that followed the Norman Conquest of England in 1066 brought the Gilliam family name to the British Isles. Gilliam comes from the Old French given name Guillaume. The name Guillaume was modified into two forms after arriving in England: Gillham and William.

Early Origins of the Gilliam family

The surname Gilliam was first found in Suffolk where Giliana was listed in the Feet of Fines in 1198. [1] Many of the family stayed in Normandy as in the same year, Udon Galien was listed there. [2] Due the prevalence to the often personal name, the name was scattered in early censuses as show by the Rotuli Hundredorum of 1279 which listed Gilianus de Levekenore Buckinghamshire and Adam filius Jellion in Cheshire. [1]

Years later the Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls of 1379 listed the name as both a personal name and a surname: Petnis Gillam; Willelmus Giliam; Giliaum Spyser, 1379; and Ricardus Gillumman, i.e. the servant of Gillura. [3]

Important Dates for the Gilliam family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Gilliam research. Another 95 words (7 lines of text) covering the years 1276, 1283, 1379, 1524, 1636, 1682, 1665, 1701, 1690 and 1699 are included under the topic Early Gilliam History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Gilliam 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 Gillham, Gillam, Gilliam, Gilham, Gillem, Gillum, Giliam, Gwillam, Gwillham, Gwilliam, Gwilham, Gyllham, Gylham and many more.

Early Notables of the Gilliam family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Zachariah Gillam (Guillam) (1636-1682) American sea captain involved in the early days of the Hudson's Bay Company. Benjamin Gillam, American sea captain, brother of Zachariah, who in 1665 commanded the Charles which brought Radisson and Groseilliers to England where they began the foundation of the Hudson's Bay Company; and James Gilliam, also known as James Kelly, (died 1701), an English pirate active in...
Another 70 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Gilliam Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Gilliam migration to the United States

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 Gilliam or a variant listed above:

Gilliam Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • William Gilliam, who arrived in Virginia in 1650 [4]
Gilliam Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • John Gilliam, who arrived in Virginia in 1705 [4]
Gilliam Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • John Gilliam, who arrived in New York, NY in 1836 [4]
  • Edward Gilliam, who landed in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1836 [4]
  • A C Gilliam, who landed in San Francisco, California in 1872 [4]
  • Edward L Gilliam, who arrived in Mississippi in 1875 [4]
Gilliam Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • J.W. Gilliam, aged 22, originally from Glasgow, who arrived in New York in 1900 aboard the ship "Astoria" from Glasgow, Scotland [5]
  • John Gilliam, who landed in Mississippi in 1905 [4]
  • James Daniel Gilliam, aged 42, who arrived in New York, N. Y. in 1919 aboard the ship "Carmania" from Liverpool, England [6]
  • William Gilliam, aged 33, who arrived in New York in 1920 aboard the ship "Moline" from Cienfuegos, Cuba [7]
  • Samual Gilliam, aged 33, who arrived in New York in 1923 aboard the ship "Cutty Sark" from St. John, New Brunswick [8]

Contemporary Notables of the name Gilliam (post 1700)

  • Robert Ballard Gilliam (1805-1870), North Carolina politician and judge
  • Frank Gilliam (b. 1934), All-American football player and coach for the University of Iowa
  • Burton Gilliam (b. 1938), American actor
  • Garry Montzell Gilliam Jr. (b. 1990), American football offensive tackle for the Seattle Seahawks
  • Haywood Stirling Gilliam Jr. (b. 1969), United States District Judge of the United States District Court for the Northern District of California
  • Joseph W. 'Joe" Gilliam Sr. (1923-2012), American former college football quarterback and coach
  • Seth Gilliam (b. 1968), American actor, best known for his role as police detective Ellis Carver on The Wire
  • Cornelius Gilliam (1798-1848), American pioneer of the U.S. state of Oregon, Missouri State Senator (1838-1842) and (1842-1844)
  • Joseph Wiley "Joe" Gilliam Jr. (1950-2000), American professional NFL football quarterback with the Pittsburgh Steelers (1972-1975)
  • Victor S. "Vic" Gilliam (b. 1953), American politician, Member of the Oregon House of Representatives (2007-)
  • ... (Another 28 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

You May Also Like

Citations

  1. ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  2. ^ 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)
  3. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  4. ^ Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
  5. ^ "New York Passenger Arrival Lists (Ellis Island), 1892-1924," database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:JXDX-22F : 6 December 2014), J.W. Gilliam, 18 Sep 1900; citing departure port Glasgow, arrival port New York, ship name Astoria, NARA microfilm publication T715 and M237 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.).
  6. ^ "New York Passenger Arrival Lists (Ellis Island), 1892-1924," database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:J6W7-BN1 : 6 December 2014), James Daniel Gilliam, 15 Jul 1919; citing departure port Liverpool, arrival port New York, N. Y., ship name Carmania, NARA microfilm publication T715 and M237 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.).
  7. ^ "New York Passenger Arrival Lists (Ellis Island), 1892-1924," database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:J68D-332 : 6 December 2014), William Gilliam, 27 Mar 1920; citing departure port Cienfuegos, Cuba, arrival port New York, ship name Moline, NARA microfilm publication T715 and M237 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.).
  8. ^ "New York Passenger Arrival Lists (Ellis Island), 1892-1924," database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:JNQ7-TTY : 6 December 2014), Samual Gilliam, 07 Apr 1923; citing departure port St. John, New Brunswick, arrival port New York, ship name Cutty Sark, NARA microfilm publication T715 and M237 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.).
Shipping
Fastest Delivery Possible

Digital Products on Checkout, all other products filled in 1 business day

Money Back
Money Back Guarantee

Yes, all products 100% Guaranteed

Support
BBB A+ Rating

The Best Rating possible

Payment
Secure Online Payment

Entire site uses SSL / Secure Certificate