Show ContentsWoolford History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The ancestors of the Woolford surname lived among the ancient Anglo-Saxon culture. The name comes from when they lived in one of the settlements called Walford in Dorset, Herefordshire, or Shropshire, or in Walford Hall in Warwickshire. [1]

"The Somerset Walford occurs as Weala-ford in a charter dated A.D. 682 while the Herefordshire place is Walforde in Domesday Book, and the Shropshire township Waleford and Waliforde in Domesday Book." [2]

Another source notes the Herefordshire and Worcestershire place names were recorded as Walorecford in the Domesday Book of 1086. [3]

As far as the etymology of the place names are concerned, one source claims the place names mean "Briton ford," [4] while another claims the place names mean "the Welshmen’s Ford [Old English Weála, genit. pl. of Weal(h, a Welshman + ford]". [2]

Early Origins of the Woolford family

The surname Woolford was first found in Warwickshire where William de Waleford listed in the Assize Rolls of 1221. Over in Gloucestershire, Henry de Walford was listed there in 1279 and in Somerset, Gilbert Walford was listed there in the Subsidy Rolls of 1327. [5]

Ricardus de Walleford was listed in the Charter Rolls for Shropshire (Salop), 1316-1317. [2]

Early History of the Woolford family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Woolford research. Another 138 words (10 lines of text) covering the years 1572, 1663, 1672, 1787, 1833, 1752, 1833, 1752, 1756, 1777, 1778, 1797, 1833, 1823, 1897, 1823 and 1855 are included under the topic Early Woolford History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Woolford Spelling Variations

Before English spelling was standardized a few hundred years ago, spelling variations of names were a common occurrence. Elements of Latin, French and other languages became incorporated into English through the Middle Ages, and name spellings changed even among the literate. The variations of the surname Woolford include Walford, Wallford and others.

Early Notables of the Woolford family (pre 1700)

Notables of this surname at this time include: Thomas Walford (1752-1833) was an English antiquary. Born on 14 September 1752, he was the only son of Thomas Walford (d. 1756) of Whitley, near Birdbrook in Essex. He was an officer in the Essex militia in 1777, and was appointed deputy lieutenant of the county in 1778. In March 1797 he was nominated captain in the provisional cavalry, and in May following...
Another 71 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Woolford Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Woolford Ranking

In the United States, the name Woolford is the 10,399th most popular surname with an estimated 2,487 people with that name. [6]


United States Woolford migration to the United States +

A great wave of immigration to the New World was the result of the enormous political and religious disarray that struck England at that time. Families left for the New World in extremely large numbers. The long journey was the end of many immigrants and many more arrived sick and starving. Still, those who made it were rewarded with an opportunity far greater than they had known at home in England. These emigrant families went on to make significant contributions to these emerging colonies in which they settled. Some of the first North American settlers carried this name or one of its variants:

Woolford Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Mary Woolford, who arrived in Maryland in 1663 [7]
  • Roger Woolford, who landed in Maryland in 1663 [7]
Woolford Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • George Woolford, who landed in Pennsylvania in 1751 [7]
Woolford Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Thomas Woolford, aged 50, who landed in America from Reading, in 1892
  • Lydia Woolford, aged 30, who immigrated to the United States, in 1896
Woolford Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • Frank Woolford, aged 21, who landed in America from London, England, in 1907
  • Frederik John Woolford, aged 25, who settled in America from Bristol, England, in 1907
  • Theodora Woolford, aged 32, who immigrated to America, in 1908
  • Nellie Woolford, aged 17, who settled in America, in 1908
  • Caroline Woolford, aged 26, who landed in America from London, England, in 1908
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Australia Woolford migration to Australia +

Emigration to Australia followed the First Fleets of convicts, tradespeople and early settlers. Early immigrants include:

Woolford Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Mr. Thomas John Woolford, English convict who was convicted in Middlesex, England for 7 years for stealing, transported aboard the "Camden" on 21st September 1832, arriving in New South Wales, Australia [8]
  • Mr. Edward Woolford, English convict who was convicted in London, England for 10 years, transported aboard the "Elphinstone" on 28th July 1842, arriving in Tasmania (Van Diemen's Land) [9]
  • Mr. Robert Woolford, (b. 1820), aged 32, English groom who was convicted in Salisbury (New Sarum), Wiltshire, England for 10 years for stealing, transported aboard the "Equestrian" on 27th August 1852, arriving in Tasmania (Van Diemen's Island) [10]
  • Joseph Woolford, aged 19, a carpenter, who arrived in South Australia in 1855 aboard the ship "William Stevenson" [11]
  • William S. Woolford, aged 44, a carpenter, who arrived in South Australia in 1855 aboard the ship "William Stevenson" [11]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

New Zealand Woolford 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:

Woolford Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Charles Woolford, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Edwin Fox" in 1875
  • Ambrose Woolford, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Edwin Fox" in 1875

Contemporary Notables of the name Woolford (post 1700) +

  • Keo Woolford (1967-2016), American actor, producer, and director
  • Donnell Woolford (b. 1966), American NFL football cornerback
  • Cyril Woolford (d. 2018), English rugby league player who played from 1949 to 1961
  • Martyn Woolford (b. 1985), English footballer
  • Simon Woolford (b. 1975), Australian retired rugby league player
  • Paul Matthew Woolford (b. 1977), New Zealand silver medalist field hockey player at the 2002 Commonwealth Games, New Zealand Player of the Year (2004)
  • Julian Woolford, British theater director and writer

HMS Repulse
  • Mr. William H C Woolford, British Yeoman of Signals, who sailed into battle on the HMS Repulse (1941) and survived the sinking [12]


The Woolford 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: Nosce teipsum
Motto Translation: Know thyself.


  1. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  2. ^ Harrison, Henry, Surnames of the United Kingdom: A Concise Etymological Dictionary Baltimore: Geneological Publishing Company, 2013. Print
  3. ^ Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
  4. ^ Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
  5. ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  6. ^ https://namecensus.com/most_common_surnames.htm
  7. ^ 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)
  8. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 2nd December 2020). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/camden
  9. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 23rd March 2022). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/elphinstone
  10. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 16th May 2022). https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/equestrian
  11. ^ South Australian Register Friday 2nd February 1855. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) William Stevenson 1855. Retrieved http://www.theshipslist.com/ships/australia/williamstevenson1855.shtml
  12. ^ HMS Repulse Crew members. (Retrieved 2014, April 9) . Retrieved from http://www.forcez-survivors.org.uk/biographies/listrepulsecrew.html


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