Show ContentsPitchford History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The ancestors of the name Pitchford date back to the Anglo-Saxon tribes of Britain. The name is derived from when the Pitchford family lived in the parish of Pitchford found in Shropshire.

Early Origins of the Pitchford family

The surname Pitchford was first found in Shropshire at Pitchford, a small village and parish, in the union of Atcham, hundred of Condover where the village derives its name from the strong pitchy smell that emanates from the oily substance that frequently covers the surface of the water. Hence the place means "ford near a place where pitch if found," from the Old English words "pic" + "ford." [1]

Alternatively the family could have originated in Pickforde in Ticehurst (Sussex). [2]

The Domesday Book of 1086 lists the place as Piceforde [3] and also lists Pitchford Hall as "Edric, and Leofric and Wulfric held it as thress manors; they were free." [4]

Today Pitchford Hall is a large Grade I listed Tudor country house that was mostly rebuilt c. 1560. Portions of the Roman Watling Street runs through the grounds. Early records show that Geoffrey de Pykeford, a crusader, was Lord of the Manor from 1272. He also built the local church of St Michael, which contains an oak effigy of him.

Early rolls included: Alcock de Pykeford was listed in the Assize Rolls of 1288; and Thomas Pikeford in the Subsidy Rolls for Sussex in 1332. [2]

The Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 had only one listing for the family: John de Picford, or Picheford found in Salop (Shropshire.) [5] The Writs of Parliament included two listings: John de Pycheford, 1277 and Galfridus de Picheford, 1296.

Early History of the Pitchford family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Pitchford research. Another 99 words (7 lines of text) covering the years 1591, 1599, 1649 and 1695 are included under the topic Early Pitchford History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Pitchford Spelling Variations

It is only in the last few hundred years that the English language has been standardized. For that reason, early Anglo-Saxon surnames like Pitchford 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 Pitchford include: Pickford, Pitchford, Picford, Pichford, Pitford and others.

Early Notables of the Pitchford family (pre 1700)

Another 50 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Pitchford Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Pitchford Ranking

In the United States, the name Pitchford is the 8,175th most popular surname with an estimated 2,487 people with that name. [6]

United States Pitchford migration to the United States +

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 Pitchford or a variant listed above:

Pitchford Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Eliza Pitchford, who arrived in Virginia in 1702 [7]
  • Joseph Pitchford, who landed in Virginia in 1702 [7]
Pitchford Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • David Pitchford, who landed in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1877 [7]

Australia Pitchford migration to Australia +

Emigration to Australia followed the First Fleets of convicts, tradespeople and early settlers. Early immigrants include:

Pitchford Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century

Contemporary Notables of the name Pitchford (post 1700) +

  • Walter Pitchford V (b. 1992), American basketball player
  • Kenneth Pitchford (b. 1940), American writer, poet and novelist
  • Randy Pitchford (b. 1971), American co-founder of video game developer Gearbox Software, current CEO and President
  • Lonnie Pitchford (1955-1998), American blues musician
  • Dean Pitchford (b. 1951), American songwriter, screenwriter, director, actor, and novelist
  • Timothy Pitchford, American politician, Member of Pennsylvania State House of Representatives from Cambria County, 1909-10 [9]
  • John Pitchford, American Republican politician, Candidate in primary for Texas State House of Representatives 67th District, 2012 [9]
  • Harry D. Pitchford, American Democratic Party politician, Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Oklahoma, 1928 [9]
  • Deborah Pitchford, American Democratic Party politician, Presidential Elector for Illinois, 1992 [9]
  • Frank Pitchford, English professional rugby league footballer who played from 1952 to 1962; he won a cap for England while at Oldham in 1955
  • ... (Another 7 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

  1. Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
  2. Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  3. Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
  4. Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  5. Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  6. "What are the 5,000 Most Common Last Names in the U.S.?".,
  7. 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)
  8. Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 2nd December 2020). Retrieved from
  9. The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, October 21) . Retrieved from on Facebook