Hessam History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The name Hessam has a rich and ancient history. It is an Anglo-Saxon name that was originally derived from the son of Heysham.In Old English, patronyms were formed by adding a variety of suffixes to personal names, which changed over time and from place to place. For example, after the Norman Conquest, sunu and sune, which meant son, were the most common patronymic suffixes. In the 12th and 13th centuries, the most common patronymic names included the word filius, which meant son. By the 14th century, the suffix son had replaced these earlier versions. Surnames that were formed with filius or son were more common in the north of England and it was here that the number of individuals without surnames was greatest at this time.

Early Origins of the Hessam family

The surname Hessam was first found in Lancashire, at Heysham, a coastal village near Lancaster. The village dates back to the Domesday Book [1] when it was listed there as Hessam derived from the Old English words haes + ham and meant "homestead or village among the brushwood" [2]

"Under the Normans, the manor of Heysham, anciently Hessam, was held by the service of cornage, where the lord was bound by his tenure to meet the king on the borders of the county, with his horn and a white wand, introducing him into the county, and attending him on his departure. From this tenure, it is probable that a branch of the family, de Hessam." [3]

Today the village is a thriving community, but historically the ancient St. Patrick's Chapel, close to St. Peter's Church holds stone graves in the ruins and is home to many Saxon and Viking remains. The church itself contains an ancient Viking hogback stone. According to legend, St. Patrick landed here after crossing from Ireland and established the chapel.

Early History of the Hessam family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Hessam research. Another 147 words (10 lines of text) covering the years 1086, 1682, 1738, 1682, 1697, 1700, 1702, 1704, 1714, 1723, 1724 and 1733 are included under the topic Early Hessam History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Hessam Spelling Variations

Before English spelling was standardized a few hundred years ago, spelling variations of names were a common occurrence. Elements of Latin, French and other languages became incorporated into English through the Middle Ages, and name spellings changed even among the literate. The variations of the surname Hessam include Heysham, Haysom, Hessam, Heshen and others.

Early Notables of the Hessam family (pre 1700)

Distinguished members of the family include Richard Helsham (1682?-1738), "friend of Swift, was born probably in 1682 at Leggatsrath, co. Kilkenny. He was educated at Kilkenny College, entered Trinity College, Dublin, 18 July 1697, obtained a scholarship in 1700, graduated B.A. in 1702, was elected fellow in 1704, and was co-opted a senior fellow in 1714. He was lecturer in mathematics 1723-30, and was the first to hold the professorship of natural philosophy...
Another 73 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Hessam Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Hessam migration to the United States +

A great wave of immigration to the New World was the result of the enormous political and religious disarray that struck England at that time. Families left for the New World in extremely large numbers. The long journey was the end of many immigrants and many more arrived sick and starving. Still, those who made it were rewarded with an opportunity far greater than they had known at home in England. These emigrant families went on to make significant contributions to these emerging colonies in which they settled. Some of the first North American settlers carried this name or one of its variants:

Hessam Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • H. L. El. Hessam, aged 25, who immigrated to the United States, in 1893


  1. ^ Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
  2. ^ Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
  3. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.


Houseofnames.com on Facebook