This comparatively rare name is of English locational origin, from a now 'lost' village thought to have been situated in Devonshire. During the 14th Century many villages were forcibly 'cleared' and their inhabitants disposed to make way for sheep pastures, while natural disasters such as plague or the 'Black Death' of 1348 also led to the disappearance of villages and hamlets from the maps, leaving only the modern locational surname. 'Headford' was originally recorded as 'Ed(d)ford', as in the following, 'Anthony Edfurd', son of John, was christened on the 18th November 1582 at St. Giles in the wood, Devonshire. The name means 'Ecghere's village', from the Olde English pre 7th Century personal name 'Ecghere' and 'tun', village, or settlement. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Elizabeth Headford, daughter of John and Martha, which was dated 15th August 1739, christened, Combe Florey, Somerset, during the reign of King George II, The Last Warrior King, 1727 - 1760. 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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