Leechforde History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
The history of the Leechforde family goes back to the ancient Anglo-Saxon culture of Britain. It is derived from the family living in the area of Latchford in the parish of Grappenhall in Chester. Leechforde is a habitation name from the 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.
Early Origins of the Leechforde family
The surname Leechforde was first found in Chester at Latchford, a chapelry in the union of Grappenhill, in the hundred of Bucklow. There is no mention in the Domesday Book of the place so presumably it was either of little significance or was established at a later time. Latchford had anciently two weekly markets and two annual fairs, granted to it by Edward III. The township is included in the parliamentary borough of Warrington, and comprises 731 acres. The family is believed to have originated here. Latchford is also a hamlet, in the parish of Great Haseley, poor-law union of Thame, hundred of Ewelme, in Oxfordshire, but this hamlet remained small through the ages as by 1890 it containing only 32 inhabitants whereas at that time the former Latchford had 2,361. 
The Lackford variant is believed to have originated in Lackford, Suffolk, a parish, in the union and hundred of Thingoe.  Today, the parish contains the Lackford Lakes nature reserve and SSSI, created from reclaimed gravel pits. Lackford Hall was built around 1570, but the parish dates back much further than that. In fact, the Domesday Book of 1086 lists the place as Lecforda and probably meant "ford where leeks grow," from the Old English "leac" + "ford."  The Lackford hundred consisting of 83,712 acres and is similarly listed in the Domesday Book. 
Early History of the Leechforde family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Leechforde research. Another 72 words (5 lines of text) covering the years 163 and 1630 are included under the topic Early Leechforde History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Leechforde Spelling Variations
Until quite recently, the English language has lacked a definite system of spelling rules. Consequently, Anglo-Saxon surnames are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations. Changes in Anglo-Saxon names were influenced by the evolution of the English language, as it incorporated elements of French, Latin, and other languages. Although Medieval scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded, so it is common to find one person referred to by several different spellings of his surname, even the most literate people varied the spelling of their own names. Variations of the name Leechforde include Latchford, Latchforde, Lashford, Lashforde and others.
Early Notables of the Leechforde family (pre 1700)
More information is included under the topic Early Leechforde Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Leechforde family to Ireland
Some of the Leechforde family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 36 words (3 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 Leechforde family
Searching for a better life, many English families migrated to British colonies. Unfortunately, the majority of them traveled under extremely harsh conditions: overcrowding on the ships caused the majority of the immigrants to arrive diseased, famished, and destitute from the long journey across the ocean. For those families that arrived safely, modest prosperity was attainable, and many went on to make invaluable contributions to the development of the cultures of the new colonies. Research into the origins of individual families in North America revealed records of the immigration of a number of people bearing the name Leechforde or a variant listed above: Thomas Lachford who settled in Boston, Massachusetts between 1630.
- Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
- Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
- Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)