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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright 2000 - 2015

Where did the English Goodnight family come from? What is the English Goodnight family crest and coat of arms? When did the Goodnight family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the Goodnight family history?

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Spelling variations of this family name include: Goodnight, Goddesknight, Goddesknyght and others.

First found in an early record of a John Goddesknyght, who was documented during the reign of Edward II (1307-1327). It is thought that Goodnight was a nickname for a religious person, "God's servant." Although the history of this name is rather obscure, it is presumed that bearers of the name came to Britain with the invasion of Duke William of Normandy, and perhaps even offered assistance at the Battle of Hastings in 1066 A.D.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Goodnight research. Another 129 words(9 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Goodnight History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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More information is included under the topic Early Goodnight Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Goodnight Settlers in United States in the 18th Century


  • Gerick Goodnight, a German pioneer, who arrived in Philadelphia in 1754

Goodnight Settlers in United States in the 20th Century


  • S. H. Goodnight, who traveled from Hamburg to Ellis Island in 1909

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  • Charles Goodnight (1836-1929), American cattle rancher in the American West, best known as the father of the Texas Panhandle, eponym of the panhandle town of Goodnight, Texas
  • Clyde Davis Goodnight (1924-2002), American football end
  • James "Jim" Goodnight (b. 1943), the CEO of SAS Institute and is recognized as the wealthiest man in the state of North Carolina and one of the wealthiest in the world
  • Isaac Herschel Goodnight (1849-1901), United States Representative from Kentucky
  • Veryl Goodnight (b. 1947), American sculptress
  • G. Thomas Goodnight, American argumentation and rhetorical scholar


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  1. Dunkling, Leslie. Dictionary of Surnames. Toronto: Collins, 1998. Print. (ISBN 0004720598).
  2. Marcharn, Frederick George. A Constitutional History of Modern England 1485 to the Present. London: Harper and Brothers, 1960. Print.
  3. Markale, J. Celtic Civilization. London: Gordon & Cremonesi, 1976. Print.
  4. Burke, Sir Bernard. General Armory Of England, Scotland, Ireland and Wales. Ramsbury: Heraldry Today. Print.
  5. Egle, William Henry. Pennsylvania Genealogies Scotch-Irish and German. Harrisburg: L.S. Hart, 1886. Print.
  6. Bede, The Venerable. Historia Ecclesiatica Gentis Anglorum (The Ecclesiastical History Of the English People). Available through Internet Medieval Sourcebook the Fordham University Centre for Medieval Studies. Print.
  7. MacAulay, Thomas Babington. History of England from the Accession of James the Second 4 volumes. New York: Harper and Brothers, 1879. Print.
  8. Burke, John Bernard Ed. The Roll of Battle Abbey. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  9. Hitching, F.K and S. Hitching. References to English Surnames in 1601-1602. Walton On Thames: 1910. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0181-3).
  10. Reaney P.H and R.M. Wilson. A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X).
  11. ...

The Goodnight Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Goodnight Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

This page was last modified on 7 January 2014 at 15:26.

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