Houghard History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
It was among those Anglo-Saxon tribes that once ruled over Britain that the name Houghard was formed. The name was derived from the Old French name Huard or the Old German name Howard. The former name is derived from the Old German name Hugihard, which literally means heart-brave. The latter name, which is also spelled Howart, is a cognate of the Old Norse name Haward and means high or chief warden.
Occasionally, the surname Houghard may have been applied to someone who worked at a dairy farm at which female sheep were kept. In this case, the derivation is from the Old English words eowu, which means ewe, and hierde, which means herd.
In other cases, the name was adopted from where the person was born as in "William, son of Roger Fitz Valevine, took the name of Howard from being born in the Castle of Howard, in Wales, in the time of Henry I."  Another source sums up the diversity of the family's origin thusly: "Camden, the most important witness of all, places Howard amongst the names in use in England at the time of the Conquest. In all probability this name has had more than one origin." 
Early Origins of the Houghard family
The surname Houghard was first found in Norfolk, where one of the first records of the family was Elwin le Heyvard, who was listed in the Hundredorum Rolls of 1273. The same rolls listed Alice le Heyward in Huntingdonshire and Geoffrey le Hayward in Cambridgeshire. Later, William Heyward or Howard was Sheriff of Norwich, Norfolk in 1657. 
"The church [of East Winch in Norfolk] is a handsome structure in the later English style, with a square embattled tower; in the east window are the arms of Vere and Howard, and on the north side is the ancient chapel of St. Mary, the burial-place of the latter family. Near Grancourt House, which was the seat of Sir William Howard, who purchased the manor in the reign of Edward the First, are some slight remains of a religious house." 
But the family quickly became widespread. Epworth in Lincolnshire was another ancient family seat. "This place, which is the principal town in the Isle of Axholme, a district comprising the north-west portion of the county, was anciently the residence of the Howard family, who had a castellated mansion here, of which nothing now remains except the site, where within the last 70 years have been dug up some of the cannon belonging to the fortifications." 
In Westmorland, at Levens in the parish, union, and ward of Kendal another early branch of the family was found. "On the eastern bank of the river Kent, which is crossed by a bridge on the Kendal road, is Levens Hall, the venerable mansion of the Howards, embosomed in a fine park, and crowned with towers, which, overtopping the highest trees, command extensive prospects on every side. The Howard family built the chapel, a parsonage, and schools, and endowed the living. " 
Early History of the Houghard family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Houghard research. Another 200 words (14 lines of text) covering the years 1300, 1443, 1524, 1485, 1520, 1542, 1542, 1585, 1654, 1587, 1669, 1615, 1679, 1675, 1626, 1698, 1536, 1624, 1588, 1651, 1701, 1689, 1701, 1698, 1703, 1797 and are included under the topic Early Houghard History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Houghard Spelling Variations
Until the dictionary, an invention of only the last few hundred years, the English language lacked any comprehensive system of spelling rules. Consequently, spelling variations in names are frequently found in early Anglo-Saxon and later Anglo-Norman documents. One person's name was often spelled several different ways over a lifetime. The recorded variations of Houghard include Howard, Howerd and others.
Early Notables of the Houghard family (pre 1700)
Notables of the family at this time include Thomas Howard, 2nd Duke of Norfolk (1443-1524) and 1st Earl of Surrey, who fought for King Richard III at the Battle of Bosworth Field in 1485; Catherine Howard (circa 1520-1542), a cousin of Anne Boleyn and the 5th wife of Henry VIII, executed in 1542; Alethea Howard, 13th Baroness Furnivall, Countess of Arundel (1585-1654) wife of Thomas Howard, 21st Earl of Arundel; Thomas Howard, 1st Earl of Berkshire (1587-1669), an English politician who sat in the House of Commons; Charles Howard, 2nd Earl...
Another 91 words (6 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Houghard Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Houghard family to Ireland
Some of the Houghard family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 87 words (6 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Houghard family
Thousands of English families boarded ships sailing to the New World in the hope of escaping the unrest found in England at this time. Although the search for opportunity and freedom from persecution abroad took the lives of many because of the cramped conditions and unsanitary nature of the vessels, the opportunity perceived in the growing colonies of North America beckoned. Many of the settlers who survived the journey went on to make important contributions to the transplanted cultures of their adopted countries. The Houghard were among these contributors, for they have been located in early North American records: John Howard, who settled in Virginia in 1622; William Howard settled in Virginia in 1635; John Howard settled in Virginia in 1634; James Howard settled in Virginia in 1656.
The motto was originally a war cry or slogan. Mottoes first began to be shown with arms in the 14th and 15th centuries, but were not in general use until the 17th century. Thus the oldest coats of arms generally do not include a motto. Mottoes seldom form part of the grant of arms: Under most heraldic authorities, a motto is an optional component of the coat of arms, and can be added to or changed at will; many families have chosen not to display a motto.
Motto: Sola virtus invicta
Motto Translation: Virtue alone invincible.
- Arthur, William , An Etymological Dictionary of Family and Christian Names. London: 1857. Print
- Guppy, Henry Brougham, Homes of Family Names in Great Britain. 1890. Print.
- Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
- Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.