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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright © 2000 - 2016


Nestled between the Rhine and Wesser rivers is the ancient German region of Westphalia. Westphalia, the home of the name Hof. Hereditary surnames were adopted in this region after the 12th century, and surnames were derived from localities were common. Local surnames originally denoted the proprietorship of the village or estate. When coupled with the German preposition von, which means from or of, local names can indicate that the initial bearer of the name was an aristocrat. The Hof family originally lived on a farmstead. The name Hof is derived from the Old German and German word hof, which means settlement, farm or court.

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One can encounter great variation in the spelling of surnames: in early times, spelling in general, and thus the spelling of names was not yet standardized; and later, spellings would change with branching and movement of families. Variations of the name Hof include Hof, Hoff, Hoffe, Hofer, Hoefer, Hoeffer, Hoffer, Hofle, Hoefe, Hofler, Hoefler, Hofner and many more.

First found in Westphalia, where the family contributed greatly to the development of an emerging nation.The name probably stems from the German word "Hof" meaning "court."


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Hof research. Another 717 words (51 lines of text) covering the years 1440, 1829, 1378, 1662, 1773, 1629 and 1684 are included under the topic Early Hof History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Another 35 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Hof Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Many Germans emigrated across the Atlantic to seek better lives in North America. This great migration began in the middle of the 17th century and continued into the 20th century. Resettlement was particularly attractive to those from Westphalia as a means of escape from poverty and religious persecution. For many Westphalian farmers, the chance to own one's own land was also a major incentive. The process of the widespread colonization of the United States began in 1650, when many immigrants from Germany settled in pockets in Pennsylvania, Texas, New York, Illinois, and California. In Canada, German settlements centered around Ontario and the Prairie provinces. Among them were:

Hof Settlers in United States in the 19th Century


  • Johann Jost Hof, who arrived in Texas in 1840-1850
  • J Hof, aged 27, arrived in New York, NY in 1850
  • Joh Adam Hof, who arrived in America in 1852
  • Caspar Hof, who landed in America in 1854

Hof Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century


  • Cathrina Hof, who arrived in Quebec in 1893
  • Conrad Hof, aged 13, landed in Quebec in 1893
  • Elisabeth Hof, aged 19, landed in Quebec in 1893
  • Georg Hof, aged 19, arrived in Quebec in 1893
  • Heinr Hof, aged 9, landed in Quebec in 1893


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  1. Strassburger, Ralph B. German Pioneers The Original Lists of Arrivals in the Port of Philadelphia 3 Volumes. Baltimore: Picton Press, 1992. Print. (ISBN 978-0929539980).
  2. Best, Hugh. Debrett's Texas Peerage. New York: Coward-McCann, 1983. Print. (ISBN 069811244X).
  3. Kneschke, Dr. Ernest Heinrich. Neues allgemeines Deutsches Adels-Lexicon 9 Volumes New General German Aristocracy Lexicon. Leipzig: Friedrich Voigt, 1859. Print.
  4. Tobler-Meyer, Wilhelm. Familiennamen der Ostschweiz. Zürich: 1894. Print.
  5. Rolland, and H.V. Rolland. Illustrations to the Armorial general by J. B. Rietstap 6 volumes in 3. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1976. Print.
  6. Preuss, Otto. Die Lippischen Familiennamen mit Berücksichtigung der Ortsnamen. Detmold: Meyer'sche Hofbuchh, 1887. Print.
  7. Fogleman, Aaron Spencer. Journeys German Immigration, Settlement and Political Culture in Colonial America 1717-1775. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1986. Print. (ISBN 978-0812215489).
  8. Strassburger, Ralph B. Pennsylvania German Pioneers The Original Lists of Arrivals in the Port of Philadelphia 3 Volumes. Baltimore: Picton Press, 1992. Print. (ISBN 978-0929539980).
  9. Crozier, William Armstrong Edition. Crozier's General Armory A Registry of American Families Entitled to Coat Armor. New York: Fox, Duffield, 1904. Print.
  10. Kapff, Rudolf. Schwäbische Geschlechtsnamen. Stuttgart: Verlag Silberburg, 1927. Print.
  11. ...

The Hof Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Hof 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 23 May 2013 at 11:08.

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