Harcombe History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The name Harcombe is part of the ancient legacy of the Anglo-Saxon tribes of Britain. It is a product of when the family lived in Holcombe, in Devon, Dorset, Gloucestershire, Lancashire, Oxfordshire, and Somerset. The place-name is derived from the Old English elements hol, which means "deep" or "hollow," and cumb, which means "valley." The place-name taken as a whole means "deep hollow valley." [1]

Early Origins of the Harcombe family

The surname Harcombe was first found in Devon where Holcombe Rogus is listed in the Domesday Book of 1086. [2] Rogo held the manor in 1086.

From this earliest reference, the Testa de Nevill, sive Liber Feodorum, temp. Henry III- Edward I. listed Henry de Holecoumbe, Devon, Henry III-Edward I. [3] Later the Hundrodorum Rolls of 1273 listed: John de Holecumbe, Somerset, Geoffrey de Holecumb, Oxfordshire, and Simon de Holecumb, Oxfordshire. [4]

The source Old English Bynames listed Brihtmer at Holacumbe c.1100-30 and Adam de Holecumb was listed in the Assize Rolls of Somerset in 1256. [5]

Early History of the Harcombe family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Harcombe research. Another 79 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1301, 1525, 1690, 1750, 1690, 1706, 1708, 1707 and 1750 are included under the topic Early Harcombe History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Harcombe Spelling Variations

The first dictionaries that appeared in the last few hundred years did much to standardize the English language. Before that time, spelling variations in names were a common occurrence. The language was changing, incorporating pieces of other languages, and the spelling of names changed with it. Harcombe has been spelled many different ways, including Holcombe, Holcomb and others.

Early Notables of the Harcombe family (pre 1700)

Notables of the family at this time include Henry Holcombe (1690?-1750?), English musical composer, born about 1690, probably at Shrewsbury, and was a chorister there. " While still a boy, he came to London, and took part in the ‘Anglo-Italian’ operatic performances at Drury Lane. His...
Another 45 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Harcombe Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Harcombe migration to the United States +

Thousands of English families in this era began to emigrate the New World in search of land and freedom from religious and political persecution. Although the passage was expensive and the ships were dark, crowded, and unsafe, those who made the voyage safely were rewarded with opportunities unavailable to them in their homeland. Research into passenger and immigration lists has revealed some of the very first Harcombes to arrive in North America:

Harcombe Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • Emma Harcombe, aged 44, who landed in America from Devizes, England, in 1919
  • Fred Harcombe, who immigrated to America, in 1919

Australia Harcombe migration to Australia +

Emigration to Australia followed the First Fleets of convicts, tradespeople and early settlers. Early immigrants include:

Harcombe Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • William Harcombe, aged 19, a labourer, who arrived in South Australia in 1849 aboard the ship "Duke of Wellington" [6]
  • William Harcombe, aged 19, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Duke Of Wellington" in 1849 [6]
  • George Harcombe, aged 20, a labourer, who arrived in South Australia in 1856 aboard the ship "Lord Raglan" [7]

Contemporary Notables of the name Harcombe (post 1700) +

  • John Dowie Harcombe (1883-1954), English first-class cricketer


  1. ^ Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
  2. ^ Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
  3. ^ Testa de Nevill or "Liber Feodorum" or "Book of Fees," thought to have been written by Ralph de Nevill, for King John (1199–1216)
  4. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  5. ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  6. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) The DUKE OF WELLINGTON 1849. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1849Duke%20of%20Wellington.htm
  7. ^ South Australian Register Friday February 7th, 1856. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) Lord Raglan 1856. Retrieved http://www.theshipslist.com/ships/australia/lordraglan1856.shtml


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