This interesting surname is of English locational origin from a place called "Walkden", in Lancashire, so called from the Old English pre seventh Century Streamname "Wealce", from "Wealcan", to roll along, or from a medieval person name "Wealaca", plus the second element "denu", an Old English name for valley (medieval English "dene"). The place name was recorded "Walkeden" in 1325, Court Rolls of Lancashire. The surname first appears in records in the 5th Century, (see below). Ellen Walkden was christened at Leigh, Lancashire on January 26th 1562. Bonaventure, son of Robert Walkeden was christened at Rochdale Lancashire on November 28th 1582, while at Leigh Ellen Walkden married Thomas Colliar on May 19th 1595. Peter Walkden (1684-1769), was a native of lancashire who became a presbyterian minister and served in Yorkshire, 1707, and Lancashire, 1711-1744, and at Stockport, 1744-1769, and his diary for 1725 and 1729-1730, has been printed. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of John de Waldedene, which was dated 1408, East Cheshire Wills Register, during the reign of King Henry 1V, "Henry of Bolingbroke", 1399-1413. 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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