Hannam History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The name Hannam reached English shores for the first time with the ancestors of the Hannam family as they migrated following the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Hannam family lived in Hanham, Gloucestershire, a hamlet, in the parish of Bitton, union of Keynsham, Upper division of the hundred of Langley and Swinehead. [1]

The village dates back to the Domesday Book of 1086 when it was first recorded as Hunun. [2]

Ancient records reveal the name Hannam is derived from the Old English roots han, which means rock, and ham, which means village or settlement, collectively meaning "place at the rocks." [3]

However, another source notes a different meaning: "at the High Enclosure [Old English heán, dat. of heáh, high; ham(m, enclosure, piece of land] Hanham is on high ground." [4]

Early Origins of the Hannam family

The surname Hannam was first found in Gloucestershire. Conjecturally, they are descended from Hunbald who held the lands of Hanham, now a suburb of Bristol, from Arnulf de Hesdin at the time of the taking of the Domesday Book survey in 1086 A.D.

However, it was not until the 12th century when the first person of the name was officially recorded, that being of Peter de Hanham, Lord of the Manor of Hanham. [5]

The Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 include Thomas de Hanam, Somerset. [6] Again in Somerset, Roger de Hanam was listed there 1 Edward III (during the first year of the reign of King Edward III.) [7]

The Subsidy Rolls of Somerset included Rober de Hanam in 1327 and much later, John Hanham was listed in the Feet of Fines for Warwickshire in 1437-1438. [8]

Early History of the Hannam family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Hannam research. Another 110 words (8 lines of text) covering the years 1667, 1589, 1594, 1795, 1559, 1547, 1554, 1656, 1654, 1656 and are included under the topic Early Hannam History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Hannam Spelling Variations

Before the advent of the printing press and the first dictionaries, the English language was not standardized. Sound was what guided spelling in the Middle Ages, so one person's name was often recorded under several variations during a single lifetime. Spelling variations were common, even among the names of the most literate people. Known variations of the Hannam family name include Hanham, Hannam, Haname, Hannan, Hannem, Hanhams, Hannams, Hanam, Hanams, Hannum and many more.

Early Notables of the Hannam family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was John Hannam or Hammond (died 1559), an English politician, Member of Parliament for Poole in 1547 and Melcombe Regis in November 1554. Richard Hannam (d. 1656), was a robber and son of a shoemaker of Shaftesbury, Dorsetshire. "He was apprenticed to a silk weaver in London, but left to become a tapster, and finally joined a gang of thieves. He engaged in burglary unaccompanied by violence, and speedily gained great notoriety. Early in his career he was apprehended for a robbery of plate from the Earl of Pembroke, but escaped and left the country...
Another 111 words (8 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Hannam Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Hannam family to Ireland

Some of the Hannam family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 50 words (4 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Hannam migration to the United States +

To escape the political and religious chaos of this era, thousands of English families began to migrate to the New World in search of land and freedom from religious and political persecution. The passage was expensive and the ships were dark, crowded, and unsafe; however, those who made the voyage safely were encountered opportunities that were not available to them in their homeland. Many of the families that reached the New World at this time went on to make important contributions to the emerging nations of the United States and Canada. Research into various historical records has revealed some of first members of the Hannam family to immigrate North America:

Hannam Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Ann Hannam, who landed in Maryland in 1650 [9]
  • John Hannam, aged 20, who arrived in Maryland in 1683 [9]

New Zealand Hannam 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:

Hannam Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Thomas Hannam, who landed in Nelson, New Zealand in 1842
  • Mary Hannam, aged 28, who arrived in Nelson, New Zealand aboard the ship "Lloyds" in 1842
  • William Hannam, aged 7, who arrived in Nelson, New Zealand aboard the ship "Lloyds" in 1842
  • Sarah Hannam, aged 5, who arrived in Nelson, New Zealand aboard the ship "Lloyds" in 1842
  • Leon Hannam, aged 20, a labourer, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Forfarshire" in 1873
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Contemporary Notables of the name Hannam (post 1700) +

  • Ryan Hannam (b. 1980), American former NFL football tight end who played from 2002 to 2006
  • Herbert Henry Hannam (1898-1963), Canadian farm leader, editor and educator, general secretary of the United Farmers of Ontario from 1933 to 1942
  • John Wort Hannam, Jersey-born, Canadian folk musician
  • Herbert Hannam (b. 1983), British policeman within the Metropolitan Police Service, bets known for having solved the infamous Teddington Towpath Murders in 1953
  • Walter Hannam (1885-1965), Australian wireless operator and mechanic on the Australasian Antarctic Expedition (1910-1911), awarded the Polar Medal for his work on the expedition, eponym of the Hannam Islands, Antarctica
  • Ken Hannam (1929-2004), Australian film and television director, active in the 1970s
  • Sir John Gordon Hannam (b. 1929), British Conservative politician, Member of Parliament for Exeter (1970-1997)
  • Edith Margaret Hannam (1878-1951), née Boucher, British two-time gold medalist tennis player at the 1912 Summer Olympics

RMS Titanic
  • Mr. George Hannam (d. 1912), aged 29, English Fireman/Stoker from Southampton, Hampshire who worked aboard the RMS Titanic and died in the sinking [10]


  1. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  2. ^ Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
  3. ^ Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
  4. ^ Harrison, Henry, Surnames of the United Kingdom: A Concise Etymological Dictionary Baltimore: Geneological Publishing Company, 2013. Print
  5. ^ Lowe, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  6. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  7. ^ Dickinson, F.H., Kirby's Quest for Somerset of 16th of Edward the 3rd London: Harrison and Sons, Printers in Ordinary to Her Majesty, St, Martin's Lane, 1889. Print.
  8. ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  9. ^ 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)
  10. ^ Titanic Passenger List - Titanic Facts. (Retrieved 2016, July 13) . Retrieved from http://www.titanicfacts.net/titanic-passenger-list.html


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