Renfrow History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The Renfrow surname is of local origin, derived from the town so called in Renfrewshire.

Early Origins of the Renfrow family

The surname Renfrow was first found in Renfrew, a parish, burgh, and market-town, in the Upper ward of Renfrewshire. [1] "This place appears to have derived its name and signifies "a point of land in the midst of the waters," from the situation of the ancient town near the conflux of the rivers Clyde and Gryfe, which, before they were confined to their present channels, almost surrounded its site; and the appellation was subsequently given to the parish, and also to the county. The origin of the town may be justly attributed to the family of the Stuarts, afterwards kings of Scotland, to whose ancestor, Walter, the adjacent territory was granted by David I., who appointed him steward of the royal household, and invested him with many honours. The town gradually rose up around the castle of Renfrew, which was erected on one of the numerous islands which at that time divided the channel of the Clyde, for the residence of the lord of the manor; and this isle, since the accession of the Stuarts to the crown, has been distinguished by the name of the King's Inch." [2]

Some of the first records of the family include: "Adam de Reynfru of the county of Edeneburk [who] rendered homage in 1296 [to King Edward I of England], and Robert Reynreu or Reynfru, a Scots prisoner of war from Stirling, [who] was incarcerated in the Castle of Old Sarum between 1304-1307. Galfridus Renfrew appears in Aberdeen, 1408. Bartholomew Renfrew appears as a charter witness in Glasgow in 1481. Robert Renfrew in Abbey parish, Paisley, 1772." [3]

Early History of the Renfrow family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Renfrow research. Another 78 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1304, 1408, 1404 and 1772 are included under the topic Early Renfrow History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Renfrow Spelling Variations

Spelling variations of this family name include: Renfrew, Renfrye, Reynfrew, Rainfrew, Renfro, Renfroe and many more.

Early Notables of the Renfrow family (pre 1700)

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

Renfrow Ranking

In the United States, the name Renfrow is the 6,633rd most popular surname with an estimated 4,974 people with that name. [4]


United States Renfrow migration to the United States +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Renfrow Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • J. F. Renfrow, who arrived in America in 1906
  • James I. Renfrow, who immigrated to America in 1907
  • James L Renfrow, aged 60, who arrived at New York in 1912

Canada Renfrow migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Renfrow Settlers in Canada in the 20th Century
  • Jessie Renfrow, aged 19, who arrived in Toronto, Canada, in 1920

Contemporary Notables of the name Renfrow (post 1700) +

  • William Cary Renfrow (1845-1922), American Civil War soldier and politician, 3rd Governor of Oklahoma Territory
  • Randy Renfrow (b. 1958), retired American NASCAR driver
  • T. J. Renfrow, American Democratic Party politician, Member of North Carolina State House of Representatives from Mecklenburg County, 1915-16 [5]
  • R. Todd Renfrow, American Democratic Party politician, Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Illinois, 1980 [5]
  • G. B. Renfrow, American Republican politician, Delegate to Republican National Convention from Texas, 1916 [5]
  • Edward Renfrow, American politician, North Carolina State Auditor, 1981-93 [5]


  1. ^ Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  2. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of Scotland. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  3. ^ Black, George F., The Surnames of Scotland Their Origin, Meaning and History. New York: New York Public Library, 1946. Print. (ISBN 0-87104-172-3)
  4. ^ https://namecensus.com/most_common_surnames.htm
  5. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2016, January 21) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html


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