Early Origins of the Heiford family
Oxfordshire where they held a family seat as Lords of the Manor. After the Battle of Hastings in 1066, William, Duke of Normandy, having prevailed over King Harold, granted most of Britain to his many victorious Barons. It was not uncommon to find a Baron, or a Bishop, with 60 or more Lordships scattered throughout the country. These he gave to his sons, nephews and other junior lines of his family and they became known as under-tenants. They adopted the Norman system of surnames which identified the under-tenant with his holdings so as to distinguish him from the senior stem of the family. After many rebellious wars between his Barons, Duke William, commissioned a census of all England to determine in 1086, settling once and for all, who held which land. He called the census the Domesday Book, CITATION[CLOSE]
Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8) indicating that those holders registered would hold the land until the end of time. Hence, conjecturally, the surname is descended from the tenant of the lands of Heyford, held by Roger from the Baron Robert d'Oilly who was recorded in the Domesday Book census of 1086. The Baron came from Ouilly le Basset near Falaise and he was a trusted follower of William the Conqueror. The Baron built Oxford and Wallingford Castles. He held 51 domains in Oxfordshire and had a large family.
Early History of the Heiford family
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Heiford Spelling Variations
spelling variations are a hallmark of Anglo Norman names. Most of these names evolved in the 11th and 12th century, in the time after the Normans introduced their own Norman French language into a country where Old and Middle English had no spelling rules and the languages of the court were French and Latin. To make matters worse, medieval scribes spelled words according to sound, so names frequently appeared differently in the various documents in which they were recorded. The name was spelled Heyford, Hayford, Haiford, Heiford, Heighford, Haighford, Heafford, Hefford and many more.
Early Notables of the Heiford family (pre 1700)
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Migration of the Heiford family to the New World and Oceana
Some of the first settlers of this family name were:
Heiford Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
Heiford Family Crest Products