Recorded as Hucker, Huckster and Huxter, this unusual name is medieval and English. It is in a sense occupational and relates to the famous travelling fairs and markets of the period before the coming of the railways in Victorian times. It derives from the word "hucke", a middle English word meaning "to bargain," and was given to a stall holder or travelling merchant. The alternative spelling of Huckster is the female form in the same way that a baxter was a female baker. The surname does seem to be particularly associated with the county of Somerset, an example from the records of that county being that of Walter Huckster of Taunton. In 1685 he was sentenced by the infamous Judge Jeffreys to be transported to the West Indies as a slave. This was because of his support for the illfated Duke of Monmouth who sought to overthrow his uncle, the catholic King James 11nd of England in that year. His subsequent fate is not known. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of John Le Huckker. This was dated 1307, in the Pipe Rolls of Somerset, during the reign of King Edward 1st of England and known to history as 'The Hammer of the Scots', 1272 - 1307. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was sometimes known as the 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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