Girdner History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
Early Origins of the Girdner family
The surname Girdner was first found in Gourdon, an arrondissement of France before the Norman Conquest. One of the first records there was William de Gourdon who founded Gourdon Abbey in 1240. After the Conquest, "Aimeric de Gourdon, 13th century was a benefactor to the church, and had grants from King John in England. In 1231 Henry III. granted to Ralph Mareschal part of the estate of Sir Adam de Gourdon. "  While we could find no villages named Gourdon in Britain, one may presume that Girton in Cambridgeshire and Nottinghamshire would be the likely related villages. Girton Cambridgeshire dates back to c. 1060 when it was listed as Grittone and a few years later is listed in the Domesday Book of 1086 as Gretone.  Girton, Nottinghamshire similarly dates back to the Domesday Book with the same spelling. Both literally mean "farmstead or village on gravelly ground," from the Old English words "greot" + "tun."  Girton College of the University of Cambridge derives its name from the nearby village. One branch of the family held a family seat at Assington in Suffolk since early times. "Assington Hall was purchased by Robert Gurdon, in the reign of Henry VIII., from Sir Piers Corbet, and has ever since been the residence of that family."  The Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 list: Bartholomew Gurdon in Norfolk; Thomas Gurdon in Oxfordshire; and Roger Gurdon in Cambridgeshire. 
Important Dates for the Girdner family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Girdner research. Another 79 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1455, 1487, 1544, 1623, 1571, 1649, 1621, 1622, 1595, 1679, 1640, 1660, 1606 and 1669 are included under the topic Early Girdner History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Girdner Spelling Variations
Norman surnames are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations. The frequent changes in surnames are largely due to the fact that the Old and Middle English languages lacked definite spelling rules. The introduction of Norman French to England, as well as the official court languages of Latin and French, also had pronounced influences on the spelling of surnames. Since medieval scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded, rather than adhering to any specific spelling rules, it was common to find the same individual referred to with different spellings. The name has been spelled Gurdon, Girdon, Gurton, Girton, Gerdon, Girtin, Gretton, Gritten and many more.
Early Notables of the Girdner family (pre 1700)
Outstanding amongst the family at this time was John Gurdon (c. 1544-1623), an English landowner and politician who sat in the House of Commons in 1571; Brampton Gurdon (died 1649), an English country gentleman and politician who sat in the House of Commons from 1621 to...
Another 45 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Girdner Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Girdner migration to the United States
Many English families emigrated to North American colonies in order to escape the political chaos in Britain at this time. Unfortunately, many English families made the trip to the New World under extremely harsh conditions. Overcrowding on the ships caused the majority of the immigrants to arrive diseased, famished, and destitute from the long journey across the stormy Atlantic. Despite these hardships, many of the families prospered and went on to make invaluable contributions to the development of the cultures of the United States and Canada. Early North American immigration records have revealed a number of people bearing the name Girdner or a variant listed above:
Girdner Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
- Mrs Edgar Girdner, aged 26, who landed in America, in 1909
- Mrs H Girdner, aged 32, who settled in America, in 1910
- Harry Girdner, aged 42, who landed in America, in 1910
- James Girdner, aged 6, who immigrated to the United States, in 1911
- Mrs. E. T. Girdner, aged 38, who landed in America, in 1911
- ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
- ^ 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)
- ^ Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
- ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, 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)