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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright 2000 - 2016


In ancient Anglo-Saxon England, the ancestors of the Rockwood surname lived in a wooded area with distinct rocky terrain. Rockwood is a topographic surname, which was given to a person who resided near a physical feature such as a hill, stream, church, or type of tree. Habitation names form the other broad category of surnames that were derived from place-names. They were derived from pre-existing names for towns, villages, parishes, or farmsteads. Other local names are derived from the names of houses, manors, estates, regions, and entire counties.

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The surname Rockwood was first found in Norfolk where they held a family seat from early times and their first records appeared on the census rolls taken by the ancient Kings of Britain to determine the rate of taxation of their subjects.

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


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Rockwood research. Another 278 words (20 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Rockwood History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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More information is included under the topic Early Rockwood Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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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 Rockwood or a variant listed above:

Rockwood Settlers in United States in the 17th Century


  • Anthony Rockwood who settled in Virginia in 1635
  • Anth Rockwood, who landed in Virginia in 1635
  • John Rockwood, who landed in Maryland in 1642
  • Thomas Rockwood, who arrived in Maryland in 1642
  • Nicholas Rockwood, who arrived in New England in 1651


Rockwood Settlers in United States in the 19th Century


  • C. Rockwood settled in New Orleans in 1823
  • C H Rockwood, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1851
  • H Rockwood, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1851

Rockwood Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century


  • William Rockwood settled in Trinity Bay, Newfoundland in 1772

Rockwood Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century


  • Elizabeth Rockwood settled in Change Islands, Newfoundland in 1821

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  • Wendell D. Rockwood, American politician, member of the Citizen's Municipal Party, mayor of Cambridge, Massachusetts (1916 to 1918)
  • Wendell D. Rockwood, American politician, Mayor of Cambridge, Massachusetts, 1916-18
  • Lawrence P. Rockwood, American politician, Candidate for U.S. Representative from California 53rd District, 2004
  • H. S. Rockwood, American politician, Mayor of Lorain, Ohio, 1875-76
  • Frank H. Rockwood, American Republican politician, Member of Connecticut State House of Representatives from Franklin, 1939-40
  • Frank A. Rockwood, American Republican politician, Member of Connecticut State House of Representatives from Franklin, 1909-10
  • Florence J. Rockwood, American Republican politician, Member of Connecticut State House of Representatives from Franklin; Elected 1940
  • Albert Perry Rockwood (1805-1879), Mormon leader and member of the First Seven Presidents of the Seventy of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints


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  1. Shaw, William A. Knights of England A Complete Record from the Earliest Time to the Present Day of the Knights of all the Orders of Chivalry in England, Scotland, Ireland and Knights Bachelors 2 Volumes. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print. (ISBN 080630443X).
  2. Crispin, M. Jackson and Leonce Mary. Falaise Roll Recording Prominent Companions of William Duke of Normandy at the Conquest of England. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  3. Chadwick, Nora Kershaw and J.X.W.P Corcoran. The Celts. London: Penguin, 1790. Print. (ISBN 0140212116).
  4. Lennard, Reginald. Rural England 1086-1135 A Study of Social and Agrarian Conditions. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1959. Print.
  5. Robb H. Amanda and Andrew Chesler. Encyclopedia of American Family Names. New York: Haper Collins, 1995. Print. (ISBN 0-06-270075-8).
  6. Humble, Richard. The Fall of Saxon England. New York: Barnes and Noble, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-88029-987-8).
  7. Matthews, John. Matthews' American Armoury and Blue Book. London: John Matthews, 1911. Print.
  8. Fairbairn. Fairbain's book of Crests of the Families of Great Britain and Ireland, 4th Edition 2 volumes in one. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1968. Print.
  9. Holt, J.C. Ed. Domesday Studies. Woodbridge: Boydell, 1987. Print. (ISBN 0-85115-477-8).
  10. Burke, Sir Bernard. General Armory Of England, Scotland, Ireland and Wales. Ramsbury: Heraldry Today. Print.
  11. ...

The Rockwood Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Rockwood Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

This page was last modified on 2 November 2015 at 11:51.

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