Gilliard History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
- Origins Available:
Gilliard is a name that first reached England following the Norman Conquest of 1066. It comes from the Norman given name Willard. This name is derived from the Germanic roots will, meaning desire, and heard, meaning strong or hard. 
Early Origins of the Gilliard family
The surname Gilliard was first found in east Kent and Sussex where they were Lords of the Manor of Eastbourne. The family were originally named Villiard, or Guillarrt, and were from Caen in Normandy in pre Conquest times.  In the Domesday Book they are recorded variously as Wielardus, Wilardus, and Wlward.   Further speculation on the origin of this distinguished family name of the U.S.A., can be deduced from the Willard Memoir by Joseph Willard published in Boston Mass. in 1858.  Woollard is a small village on the River Chew in the Chew Valley in East Somerset. Some of the first records of the name include: Wihelardus de Trophil who was listed in the History of Northumberland in 1168 and Wilard de Pikeeden who was listed in the same source in 1227. The Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls of 1379 list Emayn Wylard. William Willarde was listed in Kent in 1602 and Nicholas Willard from Kent married Jane Coumber at Canterbury in 1690. 
Early History of the Gilliard family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Gilliard research. Another 112 words (8 lines of text) covering the years 1617, 1630, 1634, 1605, 1676, 1634, 1643, 1672, 1692, 1692, 1640, 1707 and 1701 are included under the topic Early Gilliard History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Gilliard Spelling Variations
Before English spelling was standardized a few hundred years ago, spelling variations of names were a common occurrence. Elements of Latin, Norman French and other languages became incorporated into English throughout the Middle Ages, and name spellings changed even among the literate. The variations of the surname Gilliard include Willard, Wilard, Viliard, Villiard, Wielard, Willardby, Willardsey, Willardsham, Willardstone and many more.
Early Notables of the Gilliard family (pre 1700)
Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Simon Willard (1605-1676), English settler to Cambridge, Massachusetts in 1634, he was one of the thirteen heads of families in Concord that signed Reverend Peter Bulkeley's 1643 petition to Governor John Endecott in support of Ambrose Martin...
Another 45 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Gilliard Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
In the United States, the name Gilliard is the 6,761st most popular surname with an estimated 4,974 people with that name. 
Gilliard migration to the United States +
In England at this time, the uncertainty of the political and religious environment of the time caused many families to board ships for distant British colonies in the hopes of finding land and opportunity, and escaping persecution. The voyages were expensive, crowded, and difficult, though, and many arrived in North America sick, starved, and destitute. Those who did make it, however, were greeted with greater opportunities and freedoms that they could have experienced at home. Many of those families went on to make important contributions to the young nations in which they settled. Early immigration records have shown some of the first Gilliards to arrive on North American shores:
Gilliard Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
- Anto Gilliard, aged 38, who landed in Bermuda in 1635 
- John Gilliard, who landed in Maryland in 1673 
Gilliard Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
- I Gilliard, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1851 
Gilliard migration to Australia +
Emigration to Australia
followed the First Fleets
of convicts, tradespeople and early settlers. Early immigrants include:
Gilliard Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
- Sarah Gilliard, aged 25, a housemaid, who arrived in South Australia in 1853 aboard the ship "Epaminondas" 
Contemporary Notables of the name Gilliard (post 1700) +
- Steve Gilliard (1964-2007), American freelance journalist
- Lawrence "Larry" Gilliard Jr. (b. 1971), American character actor, best known for his portrayal of D'Angelo Barksdale on the HBO drama series The Wire
- Ernest Thomas Gilliard (1912-1965), American ornithologist, museum curator and explorer to South America and New Guinea
- Tanya D. Gilliard, American Democratic Party politician, Candidate for New York State Senate 4th District, 2008 
- Pierre Gilliard (1879-1962), Swiss academic and author, best known as the French language tutor to the five children of Emperor Nicholas II of Russia
Related Stories +
- ^ Hanks, Patricia and Flavia Hodges, A Dictionary of Surnames. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988. Print. (ISBN 0-19-211592-8)
- ^ 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)
- ^ Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
- ^ Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
- ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
- ^ https://namecensus.com/most_common_surnames.htm
- ^ 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)
- ^ South Australian Register Monday 26th December 1853. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) Epaminondas 1853. Retrieved http://www.theshipslist.com/ships/australia/epaminondas1853.shtml.
- ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, October 23) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html