Recorded in several spelling forms including Balderstone, Bolderstone, Balderston, Balderson, and Bolderson, this interesting surname is locational, and of medieval English origin. It originates from the villages of Balderstone, of which there are two places so called in the county of Lancashire. The earliest recording of the village name is in Whitaker's "History of Whalley" for the year 1172, which gives the spelling as "Balderestone". Later in the rolls known as "The Feet of Fines", it appears in 1256 as "Baldreston"; and as "Baldirston" in the Court Rolls of 1323. The derivation is from the Olde English pre 7th century personal name "Baldhere", composed of the elements "beold", brave, and "here", army, with "tun", a settlement. During the Middle Ages, when it was becoming more common for people to migrate from their birthplace to seek work elsewhere, they would often adopt the placename as a means of identification, thus resulting in a wide dispersal of the name. The early recordings include such as examples as Johannes de Baldreston, in the 1379 Poll Tax register, and William Baldeston, a member of the famous Preston Guild, in 1459. The first known recording of the surname in any spelling is believed to be that of Richard de Baldreston, in the charter known as "The lay subsidy roll" for the year 1332. This was in the reign of King Edward 111rd, known as "The Father of the English navy", 1327 - 1377. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
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