Wooden History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Early Origins of the Wooden family

The surname Wooden was first found in Essex, where there are no fewer that three townships and parishes so named: Woodham-Ferris in the union and hundred of Chelmsford; Woodham-Mortimer, a parish, in the union of Maldon, hundred of Dengie; and Woodham-Walter a parish, in the union of Maldon, hundred of Dengie. [1]

Literally the place names mean "dweller at the enclosure by the Wood [Old English wudu + ham(m)] where the Middle English form was usually Wodeham. " [2] The name is often pluralized to Woodhams. [3]

Ironically, there was only one listing of the family in the Hundredorum Rolls of 1273, Thomas de Wodeham, as the rest were found as follows: Peter de Wodeham, Northamptonshire; Egipgidias de Wodeham, London; and Reginald de Wodeham, Gloucestershire. [4]

Adam Goddam or Woodham (d. 1358) was a Franciscan, "born towards the end of the thirteenth century, and attended Ockham's lectures on the 'Sentences' of Peter Lombard at Oxford, where he was presumably a member of the Franciscan convent. His studies under Ockham must have ended in the first years of the fourteenth century, when his master went to Paris." [5]

One source claims that the family or a branch of the family was originally found in Dorset where they held a family seat from very ancient times, at Catherston-Lewston, a parish, in the union of Bridport, hundred of Whitchurch Canonicorum. "This place was the residence of a branch of the Wadhams, by one of whom, Nicholas Wadham, and Dorothy his wife, Wadham College, Oxford, was founded. " [1]

Early History of the Wooden family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Wooden research. Another 80 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1613, 1625, 1789, 1743, 1803, 1769 and 1773 are included under the topic Early Wooden History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Wooden Spelling Variations

Spelling variations of this family name include: Woodham, Wodam, Wodham and others.

Early Notables of the Wooden family (pre 1700)

Notables of this surname at this time include: Mrs Woodham, (1743-1803), née Spenser. She was an English singer and actress and "known on account of the elegance of her dress and person as 'Buck' Spencer. She played at Covent Garden Euphrosyne in 'Comus,' and was regarded as a rival to Miss Brent, subsequently Mrs. Pinto. She sang at Marylebone Gardens under Dr. Arnold, from whom she...
Another 65 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Wooden Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Wooden migration to the United States +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Wooden Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Mary Wooden, who arrived in Maryland in 1663 [6]
Wooden Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Peter Wooden, who landed in San Francisco, California in 1850 [6]
  • Miss Wooden, aged 23, who settled in America, in 1893
  • Robert J. Wooden, aged 27, who immigrated to the United States, in 1895
Wooden Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • S. Wooden, who landed in America, in 1904
  • H.S. Wooden, aged 22, who landed in America, in 1905
  • Stewart L. Wooden, aged 32, who immigrated to America, in 1917
  • Warren Wooden, aged 35, who landed in America, in 1923
  • Ben Wooden, aged 20, who settled in America, in 1923
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Canada Wooden migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Wooden Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century
  • John Wooden, who landed in Halifax, Nova Scotia in 1749-1752
Wooden Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • Thomas Wooden, who arrived in Canada in 1830

New Zealand Wooden 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:

Wooden Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Mr. James Wooden, (b. 1854), aged 20, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "Peter Denny" arriving in Port Chalmers, Dunedin, Otago, South Island, New Zealand on 26th July 1874 [7]

Contemporary Notables of the name Wooden (post 1700) +

  • Shawn Wooden (b. 1973), American former NFL football safety who played from 1996 to 2004
  • John Robert Wooden (1910-2010), American NCAA basketball coach and recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom, nicknamed the "Wizard of Westwood," inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame (1961) and the College Basketball Hall of Fame (2006)
  • Josh Wooden (b. 1978), Australian rules footballer who played from 1997 to 2007
  • Charles Wooden (1827-1875), German recipient of the Victoria Cross


  1. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  2. ^ Harrison, Henry, Surnames of the United Kingdom: A Concise Etymological Dictionary Baltimore: Geneological Publishing Company, 2013. Print
  3. ^ Lowe, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  4. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  5. ^ Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print
  6. ^ 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)
  7. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 26th March 2019). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html


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