This interesting and unusual name is a dialectual variant of the locational name Halstead of English origin. The name is now most frequently found in Lancashire, where it is from High Halstead in Burnly, which is named as the 'site of a hall' from the Olde English pre 7th Century h(e)all, hall and 'stede', place. Alternatively there are places so called in Kent, Leicester, and Essex, the latter county is recorded in the Domesday Book of 1086 as 'Haltesteds' but all three as so called from the Olde English '(ge)heald', hut temporary shelter, and 'stede', site. An early recording of the name in Lancashire is of one John Hasted who was christened on 15th April 1663, in Burnley. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Thomas Hastead, which was dated 1674 Hearth Tax Returns, Suffolk, during the reign of King Charles II, The Merry Monarch, 1660 - 1685. 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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