Wilfong History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Wilfong is one of the many new names that came to England following the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Wilfong family lived in Nottinghamshire, at Wilford. This placename is derived from the name Norman-French name Will, a pet form of William and the word ford, meaning a river crossing, and indicates that the ford in question belonged to William.

Early Origins of the Wilfong family

The surname Wilfong was first found in Nottinghamshire at Wilford (also known as Wilfrids Ford) a parish and village in the union of Basford, in the north division of the wapentake of Rushcliffe.

The village dates back to at least the Domesday Book when it was listed as Wilesford [1] and literally meant "willow-tree ford," from the Old English words "wilig" + "ford." [2] At that time, the land was held William Peverel, a Norman Baron, who was granted the fishery in the district of Clifton. Wilford House was built by Henry Smith, Esq. in 1828. [3]

Saint Wilfrid or Wilfrith (634-709), was Bishop of York, the son of a Northumbrian thegn. "In his fourteenth year he was a handsome and well-mannered lad, fond of arms, horses, and fine clothes, but he was not happy, for he had an unkind stepmother, and he wished to enter a monastery. His father sent him to the court of Oswy [q. v.], where he pleased the queen, Eanflaed. After spending a year in Kent he left England in 653 in company with Benedict Biscop. " [4]

Wulfred (d. 832), was Archbishop of Canterbury and "first appears as Archdeacon under Archbishop Ethelhard. He had large estates in Kent, and was probably a Kentish man. " [4]

Early History of the Wilfong family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Wilfong research. Another 57 words (4 lines of text) covering the years 1450, 1418, 1414, 1414, 1413, 1395, 1397, 1397, 1404, 1411, 1479, 1499, 1479, 1516, 1550, 1516, 1499, 1507, 1516, 1544, 1545 and 1547 are included under the topic Early Wilfong History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Wilfong Spelling Variations

Anglo-Norman names tend to be marked by an enormous number of spelling variations. This is largely due to the fact that Old and Middle English lacked any spelling rules when Norman French was introduced in the 11th century. The languages of the English courts at that time were French and Latin. These various languages mixed quite freely in the evolving social milieu. The final element of this mix is that medieval scribes spelled words according to their sounds rather than any definite rules, so a name was often spelled in as many different ways as the number of documents it appeared in. The name was spelled Wilfoord, Williford, Wilfort, Wilford and others.

Early Notables of the Wilfong family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was John Wilford (died 1418) English politician from Exeter, Devon who represented Exeter in April 1414 and November 1414. His brother, William Wilford (died 1413), was also an English politician for Exeter in 1395, January 1397, September 1397, January 1404 and 1411. Ralph Wulford or Wilford (1479?-1499), was and English pretender, born about 1479, is described in 'Fabyan's Chronicle' as son of a cordwainer in London, and he was not improbably a member of the London and Kent family of Wilford. He was made to personate the Earl of Warwick, eldest son of Edward IV's...
Another 130 words (9 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Wilfong Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


Canada Wilfong migration to Canada +

Because of the political and religious discontent in England, families began to migrate abroad in enormous numbers. Faced with persecution and starvation at home, the open frontiers and generally less oppressive social environment of the New World seemed tantalizing indeed to many English people. The trip was difficult, and not all made it unscathed, but many of those who did get to Canada and the United States made important contributions to the young nations in which they settled. Some of the first North American settlers with Wilfong name or one of its variants:

Wilfong Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • Benjamin Wilfong, who arrived in Canada in 1831
  • Jonas Wilfong, who landed in Canada in 1831

Contemporary Notables of the name Wilfong (post 1700) +

  • Robert Donald Wilfong (b. 1953), American professional baseball scout and a former Major League Baseball second baseman
  • Alva Winfred Wilfong (1933-1985), American professional NBA basketball player


  1. ^ Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
  2. ^ Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
  3. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  4. ^ Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print


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