Origins Available: French
The Anglo- Norman Conquest
lead by Strongbow
introduced the first non-Gaelic elements into Irish nomenclature. These Anglo- Normans
brought some traditions to Ireland
that were not readily found within Gaelic system of hereditary surnames
. One of the best examples of this is the local
surnames, such as Rockford, were taken from the name of a place or a geographical feature where the person lived, held land, or was born. These surnames were very common in England
, but were almost non-existent within Ireland
previous to the conquest. The earliest surnames of this type came from Normandy
, but as the Normans
moved, they often created names in reference to where they actually resided. Therefore, some settlers eventually took names from Irish places. Originally, these place names were prefixed by de, which means from in French. This type of prefix was eventually either made a part of the surname, if the place name began with a vowel, or was eliminated entirely. The Rockford family originally lived in either of the settlements called Rochford in the English counties of Essex
. The surname Rockford belongs to the large category of Anglo-Norman habitation names, which are derived from pre-existing names for towns, villages, parishes, or farmsteads. The Rockford family of County Cork
was originally surnamed de Ridlesford. Their name became Rockford through a mistranslation of the Gaelic form of the name.
Early Origins of the Rockford family
The surname Rockford was first found in counties Meath and Kilkenny
(Irish: Cill Chainnigh), the former Kingdom of Osraige (Ossory), located in Southeastern Ireland
in the province of Leinster
, where they had been granted lands by Strongbow
, Earl of Pembroke, during the Anglo- Norman invasion
in 1172. "The Irish family settled in that country at, or soon after, the Anglo- Norman invasion
. Their name was Latinized De Rupe Forti, 'of the strong rock,' which is doubtless its true meaning." CITATION[CLOSE]
Lowe, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
Early History of the Rockford family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Rockford research.Another 189 words (14 lines of text) covering the years 1224, 1652, 1727 and 1690 are included under the topic Early Rockford History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Rockford Spelling Variations
Names were simply spelled as they sounded by medieval scribes and church officials. Therefore, during the lifetime of a single person, his name was often spelt in many different ways, explaining the many spelling variations
encountered while researching the name Rockford. Some of these variations included: Rockford, Rockfort, Rochfort, Rochefort, Roakfort, Roakford, Rochford, Rocheford, Roachford, Roachfort, Rockfurd, Rockfurt, Ruckford, Ruckfort, Rucford and many more.
Early Notables of the Rockford family (pre 1700)
Another 49 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Rockford Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Rockford family to the New World and Oceana
The Irish emigration during the late 18th and 19th century contributed to the melting pot of nationalities in North America, and the building of a whole new era of industry and commerce in what was seen as a rich, new land. Ireland's Great Potato Famine
resulted in the worst economic and social conditions in the island's history. And in response to the hunger, disease, and poverty, during this decade the total number of emigrants to leave for North America rivaled all the previous years combined. Those from this decade that arrived on North American shores were not warmly welcomed by the established population, but they were vital to the rapid development of the industry, agriculture, and infrastructure of the infant nations of the United States and what would become Canada. Research into early immigration and passenger lists has shown many people bearing the name Rockford:
Rockford Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
- John Rockford, aged 23, who landed in Missouri in 1839 CITATION[CLOSE]
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)
- Peter Rockford, who settled in Philadelphia in 1875
Rockford Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
- Bridget Rockford, aged 26, a servant, who arrived in South Australia in 1855 aboard the ship "Sea Park"
- Mary Rockford, aged 21, a servant, who arrived in South Australia in 1855 aboard the ship "Sea Park"
Historic Events for the Rockford family
- Mr. Michael Rockford, British Fireman from United Kingdom who worked aboard the Empress of Ireland and survived the sinking CITATION[CLOSE]
Commemoration Empress of Ireland 2014. (Retrieved 2014, June 17) . Retrieved from http://www.empress2014.ca/seclangen/listepsc1.html
The Rockford Motto
The motto was originally a war cry or slogan. Mottoes first began to be shown with arms in the 14th and 15th centuries, but were not in general use until the 17th century. Thus the oldest coats of arms generally do not include a motto. Mottoes seldom form part of the grant of arms: Under most heraldic authorities, a motto is an optional component of the coat of arms, and can be added to or changed at will; many families have chosen not to display a motto.
Motto: Candor dat viribus alas
Motto Translation: Truth gives wings to strength.