Goodenough History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The ancient Normans that arrived in England following the Conquest of 1066 are the initial ancestors from which the many generations of the Goodenough family have grown. The name Goodenough was given to a member of the family who was a person who's achievements were "good enough." A broad and miscellaneous class of surnames, nickname surnames referred to a characteristic of the first person who used the name. They can describe the bearer's favored style of clothing, appearance, habits, or character.

Early Origins of the Goodenough family

The surname Goodenough was first found in Cumberland where they held a family seat from very early times and were granted lands by Duke William of Normandy, their liege Lord, for their distinguished assistance at the Battle of Hastings in 1066 A.D.

Important Dates for the Goodenough family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Goodenough research. Another 86 words (6 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Goodenough History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Goodenough 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 Goodenough include Goodenough, Goodenowe, Goodenuff and others.

Early Notables of the Goodenough family (pre 1700)

More information is included under the topic Early Goodenough Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Goodenough 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 Goodenoughs to arrive on North American shores:

Goodenough Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Richard Goodenough, who settled in New England in 1686
Goodenough Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • William Goodenough, who landed in New York in 1844 [1]

Goodenough 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:

Goodenough Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • James Goodenough, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Hermione" in 1883

Contemporary Notables of the name Goodenough (post 1700)

  • Ward Goodenough (1919-2013), American anthropologist
  • Ursula Goodenough (b. 1943), American biologist, Professor of Biology at Washington University in St. Louis
  • John B. Goodenough (b. 1922), German-born, American physicist and chemist, best known for developing the Li-ion rechargeable battery
  • Florence Laura Goodenough (1886-1959), American psychologist and professor at the University of Minnesota, best known for developing the Goodenough Draw-A-Man test
  • Erwin R. Goodenough (1893-1965), American academic and scholar in the history of religion
  • John B Goodenough, American professor of mechanical and electrical engineering at The University of Texas
  • Samuel Goodenough (1743-1827), English scientist, Bishop of Carlisle (1808-1827)
  • Frederick Goodenough (1866-1934), English banker, Chairman of Barclays Bank from 1917 to 1934
  • Edmund Goodenough (1786-1845), English churchman, Dean of Wells from 1831 until his death, youngest son of Samuel Goodenough, bishop of Carlisle
  • Mrs. Debbie Maxine Reich Goodenough M.V.O.,, British Head Gardener for Highgrove Estate, was appointed the Member of the Royal Victorian Order on 8th June 2018 [2]
  • ... (Another 5 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Historic Events for the Goodenough family

HMS Hood
  • Mr. Herbert H Goodenough (b. 1914), English Cook (S) serving for the Royal Navy from Northfleet, Strood, Kent, England, who sailed into battle and died in the sinking [3]
HMS Prince of Wales
  • Mr. Michael Grant Goodenough, British Commander, who sailed into battle on the HMS Prince of Wales and survived the sinking [4]


  1. ^ 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)
  2. ^ "Birthday and New Year Honours Lists (1940 to 2019)." Issue 62507, 28 December 2018 | London Gazette, The Gazette, Dec. 2018,
  3. ^ H.M.S. Hood Association-Battle Cruiser Hood: Crew Information - H.M.S. Hood Rolls of Honour, Men Lost in the Sinking of H.M.S. Hood, 24th May 1941. (Retrieved 2016, July 15) . Retrieved from
  4. ^ HMS Prince of Wales Crew members. (Retrieved 2014, April 9) . Retrieved from
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