There are two distinct sources for the Pafort surname. Some instances of the surname come from the Old French word "pafard," meaning "shield," and as such, the name may have been a Norman nickname
name either a soldier or an armorer. The name is also thought to have come from either of two minor places in Devon: Pafford in Moretonhampstead or Parford in Drewsteignton, both are derived from the Old English words "pæð" meaning "path," and "ford," meaning "a ford," that is, a low spot where a river may be crossed.
Early Origins of the Pafort family
The surname Pafort was first found in Nottinghamshire
where they held a family seat
as Lords of the Manor. The Saxon influence of English history diminished after the Battle of Hastings in 1066. The language of the courts was French for the next three centuries and the Norman ambience prevailed. But Saxon surnames survived and the family name was first referenced in the 13th century when they held estates in that shire.
Early History of the Pafort family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Pafort research.Another 369 words (26 lines of text) covering the years 1347, 1510, 1600, 1096, 1156, 1455, 1487, 1615 and 1619 are included under the topic Early Pafort History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Pafort 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 Pafort include Bafford, Bafforde, Baford, Bayford, Bafore, Pafford and many more.
Early Notables of the Pafort family (pre 1700)
More information is included under the topic Early Pafort Notables in all our PDF Extended History products
and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Pafort family to the New World and Oceana
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 Pafort were among these contributors, for they have been located in early North American records: Fred Paffard, and Henry Paffard, who were both on record in the census of Ontario, Canada of 1871; and Thomas Pafford, a bonded passenger who was sent to Barbados or Jamaica in 1688..