This distinguished Yorkshire surname is of Old Norse origin, and is a locational name deriving from the place called Oglethorpe three miles west of Tadcaster in West Yorkshire. The place is recorded in the Domesday Book of 1086 as "Ocelestorp" and "Oglestorp", and in the 1240 Feet of Fines of the county as "Okelesthorp", and is so called from the Old Norse personal name "Oddke(ti)ll", composed of the Old Norse elements "odd", point of a weapon, and "ketill", sacrificial cauldron, with "thorp", village, settlement, farm.Locational surnames were acquired by local landowners, and the lord of the manor, and by those former inhabitants of a place who had moved to another area, and used the name of their birthplace as a means of identification. Early examples of the surname include: Nicholas de Okolstorp (1273); William Ogylthorp (1379); and William Ogylsthrope (1407). One Robert Ogelthroppe was listed in the Register of the University of Oxford in 1581. The Colony of Georgia, in America, was founded by the English general, James Oglethorpe (1696 - 1785), who was later M.P. for Haslemere, Surrey, for thirty-two years. A Coat of Arms granted to a family of the name in Yorkshire depicts a black chevron embattled between three black boars' heads, on a silver shield. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Hemer de Oclestorp, which was dated 1219, witness in the "Assize Court Rolls of Yorkshire", during the reign of King Henry 111, known as "The Frenchman", 1216 - 1272. 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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