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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. Crispin, M. Jackson and Leonce Mary. Falaise Roll Recording Prominent Companions of William Duke of Normandy at the Conquest of England. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  2. Passenger Lists of Vessels Arriving at Galveston Texas 1896-1951. National Archives Washington DC. Print.
  3. Browning, Charles H. Americans of Royal Descent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  4. Mills, A.D. Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4).
  5. Papworth, J.W and A.W Morant. Ordinary of British Armorials. London: T.Richards, 1874. Print.
  6. Fairbairn. Fairbain's book of Crests of the Families of Great Britain and Ireland, 4th Edition 2 volumes in one. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1968. Print.
  7. Skordas, Guest. Ed. The Early Settlers of Maryland an Index to Names or Immigrants Complied from Records of Land Patents 1633-1680 in the Hall of Records Annapolis, Maryland. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1968. Print.
  8. Zieber, Eugene. Heraldry in America. Philadelphia: Genealogical Publishing Co. Print.
  9. Hinde, Thomas Ed. The Domesday Book England's Heritage Then and Now. Surrey: Colour Library Books, 1995. Print. (ISBN 1-85833-440-3).
  10. MacAulay, Thomas Babington. History of England from the Accession of James the Second 4 volumes. New York: Harper and Brothers, 1879. Print.
  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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