Ockerd History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
The Ockerd surname is derived form the Old English word "ortgeard," or "orceard," a compound of "wort," or "plant," and "geard," meaning "yard." It is thought to have originally been a topographic name for someone who lived by an orchard, or perhaps an occupational name for a fruit grower. There were also several places named Orchard, such as those in Devon and Somerset, and the surname may have been taken on from a place name.
Early Origins of the Ockerd family
The surname Ockerd was first found in Devon, where they held a family seat as Lords of the Manor of Hartland Abbey in that shire.
"The barton, [of Mitchell-Morton, in the parish of Launcelles, Cornwall] belonged for many years to the Orchard family, is now vested in the Rev. Thomas H. Morrison, as devisee of the late Paul Orchard, Esq." 
Although the origin of this name may seem obvious to most, the real source lies far from fruit trees. Far to the north, the Urquharts were hereditary Sheriffs of Cromarty. This difficult Gaelic name posed problems for even the Scottish tongue.
In Loch Ness, Scotland, their seat, they were frequently called Orchar or Orchard. Hence, the name Orchard earned the right to be a sept of the great Clan Urquhart. In the 14th century it is generally believed that a branch of this clan moved south to Devon and became seated at Hartland Abbey.
Early History of the Ockerd family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Ockerd research. Another 74 words (5 lines of text) covering the years 1410, 1750, 1468 and 1504 are included under the topic Early Ockerd History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Ockerd Spelling Variations
Spelling variations of this family name include: Orchard, Orchar, Orcher, Orcutt, Orcherd, Augher and others.
Early Notables of the Ockerd family (pre 1700)
More information is included under the topic Early Ockerd Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Ockerd family to Ireland
Some of the Ockerd family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 41 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 Ockerd family
Some of the first settlers of this family name or some of its variants were: Anne Orchard who settled in Virginia in 1636; Giles Orchard settled in Boston Massachusetts in 1635; John Orchard settled in Virginia in 1666; Richard Orchard settled in Maryland in 1634.
Related Stories +
- ^ Hutchins, Fortescue, The History of Cornwall, from the Earliest Records and Traditions to the Present Time. London: William Penaluna, 1824. Print