An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright © 2000 - 2016
The ancestors of the name Kirkham date back to the Anglo-Saxon tribes of Britain. The name is derived from when the Kirkham family lived in the region of Kirham. Kirkham is a topographic surname, which was given to a person who resided near a physical feature such as a hill, stream, church, or type of tree. Habitation names form the other broad category of surnames that were derived from place-names. They were derived from pre-existing names for towns, villages, parishes, or farmsteads. Other local names are derived from the names of houses, manors, estates, regions, and entire counties. As a general rule, the greater the distance between an individual and their homeland, the larger the territory they were named after. For example, a person who only moved to another parish would be known by the name of their original village, while people who migrated to a different country were often known by the name of a region or country from which they came.
The surname Kirkham was first found in Lancashire where they held a family seat from very ancient times, some say well before the Norman Conquest and the arrival of Duke William at Hastings in 1066 A.D.
It is only in the last few hundred years that the English language has been standardized. For that reason, early Anglo-Saxon surnames like Kirkham are characterized by many spelling variations. As the English language changed and incorporated elements of other European languages, even literate people changed the spelling of their names. The variations of the name Kirkham include: Kirkham, Kirkam and others.
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Kirkham research. Another 338 words (24 lines of text) covering the year 1300 is included under the topic Early Kirkham History in all our PDF Extended History products.
More information is included under the topic Early Kirkham Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.
Many English families tired of political and religious strife left Britain for the new colonies in North America. Although the trip itself offered no relief - conditions on the ships were extremely cramped, and many travelers arrived diseased, starving, and destitute - these immigrants believed the opportunities that awaited them were worth the risks. Once in the colonies, many of the families did indeed prosper and, in turn, made significant contributions to the culture and economies of the growing colonies. An inquiry into the early roots of North American families has revealed a number of immigrants bearing the name Kirkham or a variant listed above:
Kirkham Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
Kirkham Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
Kirkham Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
Kirkham Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
The Kirkham Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Kirkham 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 22 July 2015 at 17:08.