Gloucestershire Names and their Occurrence
This is an initial analysis of surnames in
Gloucestershire. It is by no means comprehensive and further additions and input
are welcome and encouraged. I have used various sources including the Census
material; parish records; Guppy's book 'Homes of Family Names of Great Britain';
my own family research; various histories of Gloucestershire including Biglands
book on the genealogy of the county as well as many histories of individual
towns and villages.
The basic emtymolgy of Gloucestershire has been influenced by a number of factors:
*names that have grown up via habitation names and topographical features
*Migration from Wales in to the county
*The influence of the woollen industry
*immigration in to the county of families from France and the low countries
*migration from Cornwall, Devon and Somerset
David Hey in his book 'The Oxford Companion to Local and Family History' talks of every part of Great Britain still retaining names that are characteristic of the area. This is true but one should be careful about taking this too literally and assume that these distinctive names did only arise in one place or, if they did, remained concentrated in that area. Some did but others didn't as we shall see.
In addition we now realise there was much greater mobility within populations than was once believed. There may have been some variance at different periods but we have never lived in a static society.
What this means is that one should never restrict searching to just one area even if all the indications are that the family were well and truly grounded there.
Henry Brougham Guppy's study of English Family
As an introduction to names in Gloucestershire it is useful to look at Guppy's study of names carried out in the 1880s. Guppy analysed the origin and distribution of names across Great Britain by looking at the occurence of the names of yeoman farmers. These he argued were a group of people who would tend to be stationary, that is they would remain in the area of their birth for generation after generation and hence would provide a robust sample from which the distribution of surnames for the whole population could be based on.
From his study he concluded that family names could be classified in to six groups:
1. General names occurring in 30-40 counties
2. Common names occurring in 20-29 counties
3. Regional names occurring in 10-19 counties
4. District names occurring in 4-9 counties
5. County names, which are established in 2 or 3 counties and usually have their principal home in one of them
6. Peculiar names, which are mostly confined to one county or division in that county.
As a starting point Guppy's study has virtue. However by restricting itself to yeoman it has meant that some names which are clearly classifiable as county or peculiar names are missing and in some instances the yeoman class has given too restricted a picture of the spread of names.
Guppy also makes some notes on some of the
characteristic Gloucestershire names:
ALWAY: A Glouc. name; the name of a family of gentry in Hawkesbury in the 17th and 18th century.
ARKELL: A surname numerous in the county, was the name of the Patron of the Living of Bodington in the late 18th century.
ARROWSMITH: now a rare name in the county. There was a Cirencester family thus called during the 17th and 18th century; and in the same century several of the mayors and churchwardens of Tetbury bore this name.
BALDWIN: Now established in Gloucestershire, Bucks, Lancs, Warwickshire, Herts, Norfolk and Suffolk. In the 13th century they were numerous in Cambridgeshire, Hunts, and Oxfordshire, and there were a few in Shropshire.
BALLINGER: Lived in Charlton Kings for two centuries.
BIDDLE: In the 18th century the Biddles were numerous in Caudle Green. Two Staffordshire gentlemen named Biddall or Biddull gave 25 pounds a piece to the Spanish Armada fund in 1588.
BLACKWELL: An old Glouc. surname, perhaps originally derived form the parish of Blackwell in the neighbouring county of Worcester.
BLANDFORD: They may take their origin from one of the Dorset parishes of that name.
BRAIN: This family held lands in the parish of Little Dean from the time of Elizabeth I up to the 18th century and the name still occurs there. The Brains also held the manor of Stanton in the 16th century. This is an ancient English name: it was represented in Hunts in the reign of Edward I.
BROWNING: An old and distinguished county name: there was an ancient family of this name at Cowley, where they long resided.
BUBB: Have for centuries frequented this part of the country. Bubbe was a Wiltshire name in the reign of Henry III. A Bubb was a sheriff of the city of Gloucester in 1653 and the mayor of Bristol bore this name in 1653. A family of gentry thus called lived in Stapleton in the 17th century.
CADLE: Christopher Cadle made a benefaction to the poor of Abston in 1662. Cadle was a surname in Oxfordshire and Sussex at the close of the 13th century.
CAM: Or Camm, a surname in Acton last century, and in Newport in the 17th century is evidently derived form the parish of the same name in Glouc.
CHESTER: Flourished in Almondsbury in the 17th and 18th century.
CHINN: Of Newnham.
CLUTTERBUCK: Lower says the family of Clutterbuck settled in England form the Low Countries at the time of the Duke of Alva's persecution of the protestants during the reign of Elizabeth I. However this may be there was a Thomas Clutterbuck, sheriff of Gloucestershire in 1586; and two Gloucestershire gentleman of the name, resident at King's Stanley and Alkerton, contributed 25 pounds a piece towards the defence of their country at the time of the expected Spanish invasion in 1588. We go back further and find a Clowterbuck mayor of Gloucester in 1545; whilst Clutterrbuck was the name of the incumbent of Stanton in 1571. In truth, the Clutterbucks have been a distinguished Gloucestershire family for three centuries or more; Stroud, Stanley, Frampton, and Cirencester having been their principal homes.
COLDICOCKS: Bear a name that in different forms belongs to several parishes in this part of the country.
COLLET: Numerous in the 17th century but now rare. More common in Oxon.
CORNOCKS: Anciently CURNOCKS belonging to families that were resident at Goldwick, Berkeley and Nibley during the 17th and 18th century. The name is still in Berkeley.
CREED: Most seem to have returned to their original home of Somerset.
CROOME: Common in Cromhall and Horsley in the 18th century and at the time a family of gentry of that name in Cirencester. In the form of Croume we find it in the adjacent county of Oxford at the end of the 13th century.
CRUMP: A Bristol alderman and M.P. bore the name in the 17th century. The Crumps were mayors in the first half of the 18th century and at the same time the name could be found in Chedworth and Oldbury. Crump is still a Bristol and Gloucester name.
CULLIMORE: A Tetbury churchwarden in 1679.
DOBBS: The name of a Gloucester citizen in 1642 whose corn was seized by the roundheads.
DONING: Of Pryton and Nursehill.
DOWDING: Name of the sheriff of Bristol in 1690.
DOWDESWELL: Of the vicinity of Stroud bear the name of a Glouc. parish.
DRIVER: Name of a gentry family in Avening.
FLOOKS: Probably descended from a family of Fluck that lived at the Oak, Deerhurst in the 17th century in which locality the Flucks remain.
FRANCOMBE: An old county name but now more often found in Wiltshire. The mayors of Gloucester in 1461 and 1574 bore this name.
GLADWIN: Of Naunton.
GODSELL: A name now rare but was an established name in Kingswood during the 17th and 18th century where a family of of clothiers thus called resided.
GUNNER: Of Cold Ashton.
GUNTER: A name represented in Almondsbury in the 18th century. It has been found for many centuries in this part of England. We find it in the adjacent county of Oxon. at the close of the 13th century; and in the early 18th century a family of this name owned The Priory, Abergavenny, in the neighbouring county of Monmouthshire.
HANKS: Possessed an estate in Church Down in the reign of Elizabeth I.
HARTLAND: Long in Glouc. It was borne by a bailiff of Gloucester in 1474 and by a mayor of the same city in 1517. It is also established in Herefordshire.
HOLBOROW: Well represented in Boxwell in the 18th century. Also two surgeons of that name in Minchinhampton and Newington Bagpath.
HUNTLEY: Of Boxwell.
HYETT: Or Hiatts descend from forefathers well known in the county during the 18th century. Hyett was the name of the mayor during Queen Anne's time and the name is still in that city.
ISGAR: Old Gloucester name.
ILES: An old Gloucestershire surname. Thomas Iles, a clothier of Minchinhampton died in 1686; and a family of gentry lived at Chalford during the early part of the 18th century. The incumbent of Salperton in the mid 1700s was thus named.
KILMINSTER: Was represented in Alderley last century.
LIMBRICK: Sir Richard Limbrick was taken prisoner at the battle of Wakefield in 1460 and beheaded at Pontefract.
LOVERIDGE: Found in Oxon in the reign of Edward I.
MACHIN: Now more common in Notts. but was well known in the county between the 16th-18th century with families of gentry by that name.
MERRET: Numerous in Stonehouse and in Haresfield.
MINCHIN: Well represented in Barrington Magna during the 18th century; probably derived form the parish of Minchinhampton.
MINETT: At present mostly a Glouc. family but in 1698 there were freeholders of the name in Notts.
NASH: More an old Worcester name dating back to at least the 16th century.
NELME: A common name in Berkeley during the 17th and 18th century; an old family of gentry then resided at that parish. Nelme was the name of a Gloucester sheriff in 1635 and a Bristol distiller early in the 18th century. It is also found in Newent and Abbenhall.
NIBLETT: Several families of that name in Haresfield.
NURSE: A name rare in the county has been established in Gloucester ever since the reign of Charles I when Luke Nurse was mayor of the city.
ORGAN: The Organ family were in Horfield early 18th century; there was a Katherine Organ in Malborough, Wilts in 1532 and John Organ of Berkshire donated 25 pounds to the Armada fund in 1588.
PACKER: Resided in Kempsford
PARSLOW: Probably connected to the Purslows of Uley.
PEGLAR: Found in Uley in the 18th century and also found now in Stroud.
PHILLIMORE: Engaged in the cloth trade at Cam.
PONTING: Were once numerous but now found more frequently in Wiltshire.
POOLE: A prominent citizen in the 15th century
POPE: Between 1372 and 1407 eight of the bailiffs of Gloucester were called Pope.
PRIDAY: Are probably connected with the old Evesham family of Preedy across the Worcestershire border which supplied nine mayors to that town between 1716 and 1825.
RADWAY: Possibly from the parish in Warwickshire.
RICKETT: During the 17th and 18th century found in North Leach.
RIGHTON: Perhaps form a Yorkshire parish so called.
RIMELL: An ancient name; there was a De Rimel in Essex in the reign of Edward I.
RUDGE: Have been in Micheldean since the 17th century. The name is now more numerous in Herefordshire and Worcestershire.
RYMER: Found in Chepstow and the vicinity and likely connected to a family of clothiers called Rimer, who lived in Minchinhampton.
SAVAGE: An ancient name of this county which was represented as Savage or Sauvage in this county as well as Wilts. in the reign of Edward I. In that reign it was also represented in one form or another in Norfolk and Cambridgeshire where it is still found.
SELWYN: Another ancient name established for more then three centuries in the county. The Selwins were Lords of the Manor in the parish of Matson from the 16-18th century. William Selwyn of King's Stanley and Richard Selwyn were two Gloucestershire gentleman who contributed 25 pounds a piece to the Armada Fund in 1588. Selwyn was the name of the mayors of Gloucester in 1675, 1727 and 1736. During the 16 and 17th century the Selwyns of Sussex owned the parish of Friston. In the form of Selveyn the name was represented in Cambridgeshire in the reign of Edward I.
SHIPWAY: Occurs in the 17th century in Beverstone and in the 18th century in Charfield; Shipweye was a Kentish name in the 13th century.
STAITE: Established in Tewksbury in the 17th century. William Steight was bailiff of Tewksbury in 1699 and 1707. Thomas Staite of Aston Somerville died in 1720. During the last century the name of Steight occurred in Ashton-under-Hill, and at the same time a family of gentry thus called lived at Pannington.
STINCHCOMBE: Ancient name and evidently derived from the name of the parish in the county. There was a yeoman thus called in Hawkesbury in the late 17th century; and in the 18th century the name occurred in Acton and Cromhall. There are still Stinchcombes in Acton and Hawkesbury.
SURMAN: The owners of an estate in Tredington in the middle of the 18th century; and about the same time a family of gentry of the name resided in Cheltenham. William Packer Surman was bailiff of Tewksbury in 1759.
TRIGG: Once common now rare in the county.
TROTMAN: The name of an ancient family of gentry established in the parish of Cam from the 16-18th century and still there in the late 19th century. In 1588, three men of that name contributed towards the Armada fund. Mr Throgmorton Trotman, a London merchant in the late 17th century, belonged to the Cam family; Samuel Trotman was patron of the living of Siston in the 18th century. The name was also represented in Nibley.
TUFFLEY: May derive their name form the parish near Gloucester.
WERRETT: Ancient and found in Cambridgeshire in the reign of Edward I.
WINTLE: Found in Gloucester and its neighbourhood and probably possess an ancestor in Christopher Windle who was incumbent of the parish of Side in 1592. The Wintles were influential Gloucester citizens in the 18th century; at the same time there was a family in Long Hope. This surname may hail originally form the north, Windle being the name of a Lancashire town and Windhill of a district in the West Riding.
WINTOUR: A distinguished Gloucestershire family. Sir William Wintour was a famous admiral in the reign of Elizabeth I., owned the manor of Lidney where the name still remains.
WITCHELL: Ancient and in Edward I reign there was a Roger de Witchele in Oxfordshire. Represented in Coln St Aldwyn, Stroud, Tetbury and in the south of the county.
VICK: Represented in Stonehouse, Minchinhampton and Berkeley in the early 18th century.
The 1881 Census
In this anlaysis of the 1881 census I have looked at the number of total occurrences of selected names in Gloucestershire and in two of its surrounding counties of Wiltshire and Somerset.
I have then noted the total number of occurrences of the name in the 1881 Census for Great Britain (using the LDS CD-ROM).
In choosing the names I have used common names, the more unusual names that are associated with Gloucestershire and names derived form the woollen industry.
In 1881, Gloucestershire represented approximately 2.1% of the total population. Hence for its fair share of a name it should represent 2.1% of occurrences. However this precision assumes that even a common name has even distribution and this is not the case. Therefore we can use a spread and for purposes of this analysis I have worked to the following basis:
1-5%: Fair share of a common or non-Gloucestershire based surname
5-15%: Representative of a regionalised name (but not just within one region)
15-25%: Tending to be restricted to one region
25-50%: Restricted to a few counties
50%+: Highly localised surname
Thus far I have identified only one name (Playne) found only in Gloucestershire; migration has caused dispertion, even if the name is rare.
In Gloucestershire there were 10,495 Smiths in 1881; and 6848 Davis. In the country as a whole there were 429,197 Smiths and 132,801 Evans recorded in the Census. The rarest names in the county included Playne (41), Dudbridge (53), Elmes (40) and Vimpany (21).
Three of these are local but Elmes is a fair share of a non-Gloucester name.
Table 1: Occurrence of names in Gloucester, Wiltshire and Somerset in 1881
|Name||Gloucester||Wiltshire||Somerset||National||Glouc. % of National|
|Widespread||Gloucester||Wiltshire||Somerset||National||Glouc. % of National|
|Woollen||Gloucester||Wiltshire||Somerset||National||Glouc. % of National|
|Regionalised||Gloucester||Wiltshire||Somerset||National||Glouc. % of National|
|Regional||Gloucester||Wiltshire||Somerset||National||Glouc. % of National|
|County||Gloucester||Wiltshire||Somerset||National||Glouc. % of National|
|Local||Gloucester||Wiltshire||Somerset||National||Glouc. % of National|
|Name||Gloucester||Wiltshire||Somerset||National||Glouc. % of Nat.|
Migration of Gloucestershire families to
Kaye Purnell has been compilling a data base of emmigrants from Gloucestershire to Australia prior to 1888. Her data currently records the names of 12,500 people who said they were born in Gloucestershire or Bristol.
Kaye has kindly looked up the occurences of the names listed above (and a few more) and I have summarised the data below.
Surname Index Occurrences
Cornock /Cornick 7
The further names that Kaye has analysed are as
Allen (21) Clark (28) Clarke (35) Cook/e (65) Smith (205) Taylor (72) White (46)
Bailey (19) Bennett (26) Davis (76) Hill (59) James (49) Matthews(39)
Parker (24) Shepherd (10) Shepperd (3) Williams (162) Young (34)
Cox (83) Ford (39) Fowler (7) Gibbs (10) Hart (20) Hawkins (22)
Knight (25) Lane (16) Lawrence (7) Long (16) Miles (10) Newman
(36) Pearce (55) Perry (8) Stephens (40) Watts (41) Woodward (6)
Anstey (0) Baldwin (27) Barton (9) Bullock (1) Burroughs (2)
Burrows (12) Butt (9) Chandler (21) Crump (0) Daniels (28) Dowding (2)
Hale (25) Han(d)cock (26) Hobbs (27) Holloway (10) Hooper (12)
Hopkins (10) Keen/e (11) Machin (0) Nash (9) Phipps (6)
Poole (26) Pope (14) Pullen (10) Pullin (7) Ratcliffe (3) Savage (1)
Tanner (24) Weekes (9) Weeks (8) Wilcox (4)
Alvis (0) Alway (10) Blackwell (21) Boulton (8) Brain (13) Cam (6)
Camm (0) Coldicott (1) Drew (11) Gunter (5) Hartland (0)
Herbert (25) Hewlett (1) Hiatt (3) Hyatt (0) Hyett (1) Holborow(8)
Loveridge (0) Mace (1) Meadows (0) Merrett/Merritt (25) Nelmes(8) Nelms (0) Ponting (4) Prout (3) Rimmel (0) Rudge (2) Sparrow(1) Stanley (8) Surman (2) Teague (10) Warner (7)
Arkell (7) Ballinger (9) Bellinger (8) Biddle (0) Blandford (9)
Browning (7) Bubb (7) Cadle/Caddell (2) Clutterbick (5)
Comely/Comley (12) Cornock (7) Croome (8) Cullimore (0) Dobbs (1)
Dowdeswell/ Dowswell (4) Fawkes (4) Flook (12) Fluck (2) Flux (0)
Garne (0) Gazzard/Gazard (19) Goulding (8) Goulter (2) Hanks (9)
Hatherwell/Hatherell (1) Hewer (0) Hignell (1) Holder (25) Iles (13)
Kilminster (1) Kilmister (3) Limbrick (10) Lusty (20) Minchin(0) Minett (6)
New (1) Niblett (7) Organ (31) Parslow/Parsloe (15) Pegler/Peglar (38) Penson/Pensom (9) Priday (0) but Prideaux (1) Radway (0) but Rodway (4)
Ricketts (26) Righton (0) Rugman (0) Rymer (0) Selwyn (2) Shield/s (5)
Shipp (10) Shipway (37) Staite (3) Stinchcombe (2) Theyers (1) Till (3)
Trotman (14) Tuffley (0) Vick (12) Vimpay (0) Wadley (2) Werrett/Wherritt (7) Wintle (0) Wintour (0) Witchell (2) Yeend (2)
"Of the names on which he comments not included above I have:
Arrowsmith (0) Chester (1) Creed/e (12) Crump (0) Doning (0)
Driver (2) Francom/be (12) Gladwin (5) Godsell (2) Gunner (0)
Huntley (0) Nurse (0) Packer (5) Phillimore (0)
The following names are ones that I think have not been
mentioned either by
you or by Guppy but appear in reasonable numbers on my index. (I have not
done this very scientifically - just chosen those which appeared to fill a
screen or more).
Ashmead (17) Arnold (29)
Baker (39) Bateman (17) Beard (42)
Beddggood (or however) (14) Bird (35) Birt (21) Brittan/en/in (17)
Brown (68) Burford (45) Clayfield (21) Cole (23) Coles (23)
Collett (16) Collins (24) Davies (32) Day (27) Edwards (35)
Elliot/t (23) Fowles (19) French (18) Fry (31)
Gardiner/Gardener/Gardner (46) Garland (17) Green (28) Gully (18)
Harris (54) Harrison (20) Harvey (17) Howell (27) Hughes (27)
Humphries/Humphreys (21) Jeffries (various spellings) (46) Jenkins
(40) Jones (89) Lewis (62) Mills (30) Mitchell (23) Morgan (27)
Morris (24) Nichol/ls (47) Phillips (47) Powell (25) Price (43)
Robinson (21) Rogers (21) Sanders (13) Saunders (30) Shipton (15)
Sims (20) Smart (36) Stone (30) Teakle (44) Thomas (82) Turner
(37) Tyler (19) Walker (25) Wall (32) Watkins (28) West (24)
Wheeler (25) Window (26) Wood (35)
My index currently contains approx 12,500 people who
said they were born
GLS/Bristol who arrived in Australia pre 1888. As it lists all family
members on arrival, a family of 12 with a rare name can skew the balance
Also all usual warnings about my interpretation of writing etc; though in
some cases I have tried to follow unusual-seeming names to see what
spelling they used in the colony. Spellings are complicated here also by
the fact that most of these names are taken from shipping lists where the
names were written down by clerks; hence their hearing or own prejudices
about spelling come into play."
Kaye Purnell: email@example.com
Ancestors from GLS who came to Oz? Database kept on GLS arrivals to AUS pre
1888. Entries happily accepted; searches done. Visit my site at
http://www.ozemail.com.au/~kayepur/ Snail mail to 15 Balla Machree Way,
Gymea Bay NSW 2227 AUS, including SSAE or 1 IRC.