This most interesting surname is of English locational origin, from either Banham in Norfolk, or Bingham in Nottinghamshire. The former was recorded as "Benham" in the Domesday Book of 1086, while the latter place appears as "Bingheham", also in the Domesday Book. The placename Bingham is composed of either the Old Norse "bingr", a stall or the Germanic personal name "Binge", with the Olde English "ham", village, homestead. Banham means the "place where beans were grown", from the Olde English "bean" bean and ham", ham as before.The surname itself first appears in records relatively late in the mid 16th Century (see below). Issabell, daughter of John Bangham, was christened at Deerhurst, Gloucestershire, on August 1st, 1584. One Edward Banham married Alice Porter at St. Saviour's, Norwich, in Norfolk, on November 6th 1614. Further recordings include a William Bangham who married Rebecca Clarke at St. Bartholomew the Less, London on February 2nd 1618, and the christening of Allyce Bangham at St. Dunstan's, Stepney, London on September 23rd 1619. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of John Bangam, which was dated November 5th 1563 a christening witness at St. Nicholas's Church, Gloucestershire, during the reign of Queen Elizabeth 1st, "Good Queen Bess", 1558-1603. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
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