The name Thames was carried to England
in the enormous movement of people that followed the Norman Conquest
of 1066. The Thames family lived in Oxfordshire
. The name is an indication that its original bearer once lived near the River Thames.
Early Origins of the Thames family
The surname Thames was first found in Oxfordshire
where the name is likely derived from the River Thame. Aluered de Tame was listed in the Domesday Book
of 1086. CITATION[CLOSE]
Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
The Hundredorum Rolls
of 1273 list Claricia de Thame in 1279. CITATION[CLOSE]
Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
Today, Thame is a market town and civil parish. "This town, which is evidently of Roman origin, is mentioned as a place of some importance at the commencement of the 10th century, when Wulfhere, King of Mercia, granted a charter dated 'in the vill called Thames.' In the year 970, Osketyl, Archbishop of York, died at Thame. It suffered much from the Danish invasions, particularly in 1010, and a fortification was erected here. At the Conquest it belonged to the Bishop of Lincoln, and till the reign of Edward VI. formed part of the extensive possessions of succeeding prelates, who conferred many benefits on the town, among which was the diverting through it the road that previously passed on its side. " CITATION[CLOSE]
Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
The family originally held estates in Chinnor, about 4 miles (6.4 km) southeast of Thame.
Early History of the Thames family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Thames research.Another 497 words (36 lines of text) covering the years 1492, 1493 and 1500 are included under the topic Early Thames History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Thames 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 Thame, Tharm, Tharme, Temes and others.
Early Notables of the Thames family (pre 1700)
More information is included under the topic Early Thames Notables in all our PDF Extended History products
and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Thames family to the New World and Oceana
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 Thames or a variant listed above:
Thames Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
- Unbwin Thames, aged 27, who landed in Mobile, Ala in 1832 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)
Thames Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
- Gustave Thames, aged 42, who arrived in New York in 1922 aboard the ship "Reliance" from Hamburg, Germany CITATION[CLOSE]
"New York Passenger Arrival Lists (Ellis Island), 1892-1924," database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:JN2C-6NB : 6 December 2014), Gustave Thames, 29 Sep 1922; citing departure port Hamburg, arrival port New York, ship name Reliance, NARA microfilm publication T715 and M237 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.).
- Alvin Thames, aged 22, who arrived in New York in 1924 aboard the ship "Bur" from Havana, Matanzas, Cuba CITATION[CLOSE]
"New York Passenger Arrival Lists (Ellis Island), 1892-1924," database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:JNZK-L2F : 6 December 2014), Alvin Thames, 25 Jan 1924; citing departure port Havana, Matanzas, Cuba, arrival port New York, ship name Bur, NARA microfilm publication T715 and M237 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.).
Contemporary Notables of the name Thames (post 1700)
- Eric A. Thames (b. 1986), American professional baseball outfielder
- Byron Thames (b. 1969), American television and film actor and musician
- Marcus Markley Thames (b. 1977), American professional baseball outfielder
- José Ignacio Thames (1762-1832), Argentine statesman and priest