Willingham History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
Willingham is a name that first reached England following the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Willingham family lived in Derbyshire, at Willington.
Early Origins of the Willingham family
The surname Willingham was first found in Derbyshire where they held a family seat as Lords of the Manor of Willington. John of Willington held a family seat there at the time of the taking of the Domesday Book,  a survey taken by Duke William of Normandy after his conquest of England at Hastings in 1066 A.D. At the survey Willington was held by Ralph FitzHubert, a Norman overlord, and it is most likely that John of Willington was the second son of Ralph, who took his name from the Lordship of Willington, as was customary in the Norman culture.
The village and civil parish of Cherry Willingham is in the West Lindsey district of Lincolnshire and Willingham by Stow is a rural village nearby.
Early History of the Willingham family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Willingham research. Another 153 words (11 lines of text) covering the years 1330, 1322 and 1322 are included under the topic Early Willingham History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Willingham Spelling Variations
It is only in the last few hundred years that the English language has been standardized. For that reason, Anglo-Norman surnames like Willingham are characterized by many spelling variations. Scribes and monks in the Middle Ages spelled names they sounded, so it is common to find several variations that refer to a single person. As the English language changed and incorporated elements of other European languages such as Norman French and Latin, even literate people regularly changed the spelling of their names. The variations of the name Willingham include Willington, Willinton, Wilington, Wilinton, de Willington and many more.
Early Notables of the Willingham family (pre 1700)
More information is included under the topic Early Willingham Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
In the United States, the name Willingham is the 2,076th most popular surname with an estimated 14,922 people with that name. 
Migration of the Willingham family to Ireland
Some of the Willingham family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 31 words (2 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Willingham migration to the United States +
Faced with the chaos present in England at that time, many English families looked towards the open frontiers of the New World with its opportunities to escape oppression and starvation. People migrated to North America, as well as Australia and Ireland in droves, paying exorbitant rates for passages in cramped, unsafe ships. Many of the settlers did not make the long passage alive, but those who did see the shores of North America were welcomed with great opportunity. Many of the families that came from England went on to make essential contributions to the emerging nations of Canada and the United States. Some of the first immigrants to cross the Atlantic and come to North America carried the name Willingham, or a variant listed above:
Willingham Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
- Miss B. Willingham, aged 19, who immigrated to the United States, in 1894
Willingham Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
- Fredk. Willingham, aged 25, who landed in America from England, in 1904
- Harry Willingham, aged 29, who settled in America from Beverley, England, in 1904
- C. B. Willingham, aged 20, who landed in America, in 1906
- Ralph Willingham, aged 34, who landed in America from London, England, in 1906
- William Allen Willingham, aged 35, who immigrated to the United States, in 1907
- ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Willingham migration to New Zealand +
Emigration to New Zealand followed in the footsteps of the European explorers, such as Captain Cook (1769-70): first came sealers, whalers, missionaries, and traders. By 1838, the British New Zealand Company had begun buying land from the Maori tribes, and selling it to settlers, and, after the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840, many British families set out on the arduous six month journey from Britain to Aotearoa to start a new life. Early immigrants include:
Willingham Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
- Miss Maria Willingham, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "Matoaka" arriving in Auckland, New Zealand on 26th September 1859 
Contemporary Notables of the name Willingham (post 1700) +
- Kamilah Willingham, American activist, feminist, speaker, and writer
- Wanda Willingham, American Democratic Party politician, Delegate to Democratic National Convention from New York, 2004
- Noble Willingham (1931-2004), American Republican politician, Candidate for U.S. Representative from Texas 1st District, 2000
- John Willingham (b. 1932), American politician, Candidate for Mayor of Memphis, Tennessee, 2003
- Henry J. Willingham, American politician, U.S. Collector of Internal Revenue for Alabama, 1941-47
- Harold Willingham, American Democratic Party politician, Alternate Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Georgia, 1952
- H. J. Willingham, American Democratic Party politician, Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Alabama, 1912
- Frank B. Willingham, American politician, Circuit Judge in Georgia Flint Circuit, 1953
- Mrs. Dell Willingham, American Republican politician, Candidate for Presidential Elector for South Carolina, 1956
- Charley D. Willingham, American Republican politician, Candidate in primary for Michigan State Senate 4th District, 1948
- ... (Another 16 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Historic Events for the Willingham family +
Arrow Air Flight 1285
- Mr. Richard Neal Willingham (b. 1957), Texas, USA, American Sergeant from Clarksville, Tennessee, USA who died in the crash 
Related Stories +
The Willingham 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: Vigueur de dessus
Motto Translation: Strength is from above.