This ancient name of several spellings derives either from the village of Langtree, near Wigan in Lancashire, or from Langtree near Torrington, in Devon. The traditional explanation for the name is "the high tree", such places being commonly the local tribal meeting place, however the Devon village name may be "the high tor". This is first recorded in the 1086 Domesday Book as "Langtrew" whilst the Lancashire form is as shown below. The name is found under a variety of spelling forms which suggests that at sometime, probably in the 15th Century, one or both villages was cleared to facilitate sheep farming which followed the great plagues of the period.The name variants include Langtry, Langtree, Lantry and Lanktree, the latter forms being found in Ireland after the Cromwellian period (1651 - 1660), as well as the usual spellings. The Irish recordings include Richard Langtry of Antrim on September 21st 1811, and Nance Lantry of Inchigeelah, Cork, who married William Cotter on February 20th 1841. On April 19th 1857, Thomas Lanktree and his wife Jude Horgan were also recorded at Inchigeelah Parish Church. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Siward de Langetre, which was dated 1206, in the Curia Regis Rolls of Lancashire, during the reign of King John, known as "Lackland", 1199 - 1216. 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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