Jeffs History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
The Jeffs surname is a patronymic name that comes from the personal names Geoffrey and Godfrey. These names appear in Old English as Geffrey and in Old French as Jefroi or Jeufroi.
Goisfridus, Gaufridus and Gosfridus are all listed in the Domesday Book of 1086.  At this time people tended to only use a surname; forenames came years later. Galfridus was listed in Lincolnshire c. 1150 and Simon filius Gosfrei was listed in the Curia Regis Rolls for Norfolk in 1210. Walter Geffrei was listed in the Curia Regis Rolls for Norfolk in 1203 and Gefray was listed in the Assize Rolls for Somerset in 1243. 
Geoffrey (d. 1093), was "Bishop of Coutances, [who] came of a noble Norman family settled at Montbrai, or, as pronounced in English, Mowbray, in the arrondissement of St. Lô; he was brother of Roger of Mowbray, and his sister Amicia married Roger of Albini. He was consecrated bishop of Coutances at Rouen on 10 April 1048, and is described as tall, handsome, and prudent." 
Geoffrey of Gorham (d. 1146), was Abbot of St. Albans, and "was descended from ancestors of noble rank both in Normandy and in Maine, of which county he was a native. " 
Geoffrey of Monmouth (1100?-1154), "otherwise Galfridus or Gaufridus Arturus, Galfridus Monemutensis, styled by Welsh writers Galffrai or Gruffyd ab Arthur, bishop of St. Asaph and chronicler, was either born or bred at Monmouth about the commencement of the twelfth century, and may have been at one time a monk of the Benedictine abbey there. He was the son of Arthur, who, according to Welsh authorities, was family priest of William, Earl of Gloucester, an apocryphal personage." 
Early Origins of the Jeffs family
The surname Jeffs was first found in the Domesday Book of 1086 where early forms of the name were found: Goisfridus, Gaufridus, Gosfridus. Later in Lincolnshire, Galfridus was found c. 1150. It wasn't until 1210, for the name to emerge with a forename: Simian filius Gosfrie in the Curia Regis Rolls for Norfolk. Agnes Geffreys was found in the Subsidy Rolls for Suffolk in 1283 and a few years later, Robert Geoffray was listed in the Assize Rolls for Staffordshire in 1293. 
Early History of the Jeffs family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Jeffs research. Another 198 words (14 lines of text) covering the years 1296, 1327, 1327, 1327, 1332, 1333, 1340, 1379, 1450, 1499, 1566, 1689, 1723, 1645, 1689, 1610, 1685, 1643, 1613, 1703, 1674, 1685 and 1613 are included under the topic Early Jeffs History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Jeffs Spelling Variations
Welsh surnames are relatively few in number, but they have an inordinately large number of spelling variations. There are many factors that explain the preponderance of Welsh variants, but the earliest is found during the Middle Ages when Welsh surnames came into use. Scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded, which often resulted in a single person's name being inconsistently recorded over his lifetime. The transliteration of Welsh names into English also accounts for many of the spelling variations: the unique Brythonic Celtic language of the Welsh had many sounds the English language was incapable of accurately reproducing. It was also common for members of a same surname to change their names slightly, in order to signify a branch loyalty within the family, a religious adherence, or even patriotic affiliations. For all of these reasons, the many spelling variations of particular Welsh names are very important. The surname Jeffs has occasionally been spelled Jeffreys, Jeffereys, Jefferies, Jeffers, Jefferis, Jefferyes, Jefferys, Jeffries, Jeffry, Jeffs, Jefries and many more.
Early Notables of the Jeffs family (pre 1700)
Prominent amongst the family during the late Middle Ages was George Jeffreys, 1st Baron Jeffreys of Wem (1645-1689), Welsh jurist & politician, known as "The Hanging Judge," Lord Chancellor of Britain; George Jeffreys (ca.1610-1685), an English composer and organist to King Charles I at Oxford in 1643; and Sir Robert Geffrye (1613-1703), a Cornish merchant, Sheriff of London in 1674 and Lord Mayor of London in 1685. He was the "son of Robert Geffrey of...
Another 74 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Jeffs Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Jeffs family to Ireland
Some of the Jeffs family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 56 words (4 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Jeffs migration to the United States +
The Welsh migration to North America in the late 19th and early 20th centuries contributed greatly to its rapid development. These migrants were in search of land, work, and freedom. Those Welsh families that survived the long ocean journey were critical to the development of new industries and factories, and to the quick settlement of land. They also added to an ever-growing rich cultural heritage. A search of the immigration and passenger lists has shown a number of people bearing the name Jeffs:
Jeffs Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
- Francis Jeffs, who landed in Virginia in 1662 
Jeffs Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
- Mary Jeffs, who arrived in Virginia in 1717 
- Mary Jeffs who settled in Virginia in 1726
Jeffs migration to Australia +
Emigration to Australia
followed the First Fleets
of convicts, tradespeople and early settlers. Early immigrants include:
Jeffs Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
- William Jeffs, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Spartan" in 1849 
- James Jeffs, aged 24, a farm servant, who arrived in South Australia in 1850 aboard the ship "Agincourt" 
Jeffs migration to New Zealand +
Emigration to New Zealand followed in the footsteps of the European explorers, such as Captain Cook (1769-70): first came sealers, whalers, missionaries, and traders. By 1838, the British New Zealand Company had begun buying land from the Maori tribes, and selling it to settlers, and, after the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840, many British families set out on the arduous six month journey from Britain to Aotearoa to start a new life. Early immigrants include:
Jeffs Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
- George Jeffs, who landed in Wellington, New Zealand in 1840
- George Jeffs, aged 35, a labourer, who arrived in Port Nicholson aboard the ship "Gertrude" in 1841
- Ann Jeffs, aged 32, who arrived in Port Nicholson aboard the ship "Gertrude" in 1841
- Louisa Jeffs, aged 12, who arrived in Port Nicholson aboard the ship "Gertrude" in 1841
- C. R. Jeffs, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Barbara Gordon" in 1850
- ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Contemporary Notables of the name Jeffs (post 1700) +
- Christine Jeffs (b. 1963), New Zealand film director known for directing the British motion picture Sylvia
Historic Events for the Jeffs family +
- Mr. Ernest Wilfred Jeffs (1899-1914), Canadian Third Class Passenger from Paris, Ontario, Canada who was traveling aboard the Empress of Ireland and died in the sinking 
- Mrs. Kate Jeffs (1878-1914), née Holliday Canadian Third Class Passenger from Paris, Ontario, Canada who was traveling aboard the Empress of Ireland and died in the sinking 
- Mr. Francis William Jeffs (1921-1941), Australian Ordinary Seaman from Frankston, Victoria, Australia, who sailed into battle aboard HMAS Sydney II and died in the sinking 
- Mr. Norman Jeffs (b. 1918), English Stoker 1st Class serving for the Royal Navy from St Helens, Lancashire, England, who sailed into battle and died in the sinking 
Related Stories +
- ^ Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
- ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
- ^ Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print
- ^ Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
- ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) The SPARTAN 1849. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1849Spartan.htm
- ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) The AGINCOURT 1850. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1850Agincourt.htm
- ^ Commemoration Empress of Ireland 2014. (Retrieved 2014, June 17) . Retrieved from http://www.empress2014.ca/seclangen/listepsc1.html
- ^ HMAS Sydney II, Finding Sydney Foundation - Roll of Honour. (Retrieved 2014, April 24) . Retrieved from http://www.findingsydney.com/roll.asp
- ^ H.M.S. Hood Association-Battle Cruiser Hood: Crew Information - H.M.S. Hood Rolls of Honour, Men Lost in the Sinking of H.M.S. Hood, 24th May 1941. (Retrieved 2016, July 15) . Retrieved from http://www.hmshood.com/crew/memorial/roh_24may41.htm