Rainfurth History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Early Origins of the Rainfurth family

The surname Rainfurth was first found in Lancashire at Rainford, a chapelry, in the parish and union of Prescot, hundred of West Derby. [1]

The early history of this name is obscure since there wasn't a Rainford recorded in Lancashire at the time of the Domesday Book in 1086. The earliest record of the name was Raineford, which was listed in Merseyside in 1198. At that time, the place name literally meant "ford of a man called Regna, or boundary ford." [2].

They are descended from Rayne, in Essex, which was held in 1086, before and after, by the Bishop of London. Rayne was also held by Roger de Raismes, a companion in Arms to William Duke of Normandy at the Battle of Hastings, and from this latter noble we can assume they moved north into Lancashire. Roger was from the Castle of Rames in Normandy to the west of Bolbec, in the arrondisement of Havre. The family retained their ties with Essex as we shall see.

William de Reynford was listed in Lancashire in 1246 as was John Raynford in the Assize Rolls there in 1401. [3]

Early History of the Rainfurth family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Rainfurth research. Another 116 words (8 lines of text) covering the years 1350, 1550 and 1690 are included under the topic Early Rainfurth History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Rainfurth Spelling Variations

Endless spelling variations are a prevailing characteristic of Norman surnames. Old and Middle English lacked any definite spelling rules, and the introduction of Norman French added an unfamiliar ingredient to the English linguistic stew. French and Latin, the languages of the court, also influenced spellings. Finally, Medieval scribes generally spelled words according to how they sounded, so one person was often referred to by different spellings in different documents. The name has been spelled Rainford, Rainsford, Raynsford, Raynford, Rayneford and many more.

Early Notables of the Rainfurth family (pre 1700)

More information is included under the topic Early Rainfurth Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Rainfurth family to Ireland

Some of the Rainfurth family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. More information about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the Rainfurth family

To escape the political and religious persecution within England at the time, many English families left for the various British colonies abroad. The voyage was extremely difficult, though, and the cramped, dank ships caused many to arrive in the New World diseased and starving. But for those who made it, the trip was most often worth it. Many of the families who arrived went on to make valuable contributions to the emerging nations of Canada and the United States. An inquiry into the early roots of North American families reveals a number of immigrants bearing the name Rainfurth or a variant listed above: Edward and Mrs. Rainsford, and their son Edward, who arrived in Salem, Massachusetts in 1630; Captain Rainford who settled with his wife and three children in Jamaica in 1774.



  1. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  2. ^ Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
  3. ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)


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