Origins of Ashford:
The surname of Ashford is a locational surname that is Anglo-Saxon in origin. Deriving various locations in England such as Ashford in Devon, Dergyshire, Kent, Middlesex, and Shropshire. The surname is a combination of Old English words, namely Eccel, meaning sword, and Ford meaning ford. Eccelsford was a location mentioned in the Anglo-Saxon chronical in 969 AD. Another location, Ashford in Kent was written as Esselesford in the Wills Records of the same county in 1046. Aesc-sceat is another old English word which means ash-copse. The other locations get their names from Old English as well. Aesc meaning ash and again ford meaning ford.
Normally locational names were used by landowners, and more commonly when migration occurred to new areas by different populations.
Noteably the Ashford crest includes the head of a moor, or black African in the profile. This representation dates back to the 13th century and is connected to the Crusades, which represents the individual family Ashford being victorious over the moors. Emblems were included such as these to represent ownership.
It could also be a representation of the the family’s extension as a ‘world ruler’, showing the extent of power the Ashford family had or wished to have.
Lastly, it could represent an association with the Hohenstaufan dynasty. This dynasty ruled the Holy Roman Empire for almost 100 years from 1138 to 1254. The emperor at the time – Henry VI – kept black African retainers. His son, who was the King of Sicily, had a notable interest in the black population in Sicily at the time that remained after the island went back to being a Christian ruled island. He established an enclave for the black population close to his palace, and would recruit an elite bodyguard unit from that community.
More common variations are: Ayshford, Ashforth, Ayshford, Aishford, Asheford, Eshford, Ashfort, Asheferd, Ishford, Aschfort
The first known recording of the surname Ashford was in the beginning of the 13th century for Reginald de Asford in 1221. He was a witness in the Assize Court Rolls of Shropshire. Names were documented during this time to keep track of tax payments and personal taxation in England, introduced by King Henry III. Another recording of the name was in 1685 for Ambrose Ashford, convicted of being a rebel for Monmouth and then transported to Barbados as a slave.
Later, the surname would branch out eastward to Kent.
Ino Ashford arrived in Virginia in 1665. Ambrose Ashford after first arriving in Barbados in 1685 would be transported to Virginia a year later with his brother John Ashford. In 1700 Michael Ashford arrived in Virginia, and the following year John Ashford arrived in Virginia as well. In 1726, Elizabeth Ashford arrived in Annapolis, Maryland. The 19th century would see many more Ashford’s arrive to the United States. Thomas Francis Ashford in 1871 arrived in Pennsylvania, A year later Frederick Ashford landed in Philadelphia.
The Ashford surname is one of the most popular surnames for African-Americans, with over 5,000 families having the surname.
In 1783, Nathan Ashford settled in Canada, and that same year William Ashford settled in Canada also.
On the ship “Asia”, Joseph Ashford who was an English convict from Middlesex arrived in 1824 in New South Wales. In 1849, on the ship Madawaska, George Ashford landed in Port Phillip.
Here is the population distribution of the last name Arteaga: United States 10,358, England 4,845, Australia 1,244, South Africa 931, Kenya 785, Canada 702, New Zealand 495, Wales 440, Philippines 258, Scotland 203
Agnes Ashford was a 15th century Christian Evangelist and was Bishop Longland of Lincoln.
Alan Ashford (1944) was an English cricketer player who played for Cornwall.
Annaleigh Ashford (1985) is a famous American actress.
Christopher Ashford (1961) is a famous professional wrestler in the United States.
Evelyn Ashford (1957) is a 1984 Olympic champion for the 100-meter dash.
Frederick Ashford (1886 – 1965) competed in the 1908 Olympics for England in the 800-meter race.
Rosalind Ashford (1943) is an R&B singer from the United States who worked with the group Martha and the Vandellas.
Bailey Ashford (1934 – 1873) was an American physician who helped establish the School of Tropical Medicine in Puerto Rico.
Brad Ashford (1949) is a US Representative for Nebraska.
Daisy Ashford (1881 – 1972) is a famous novelist who wrote The Young Visiters, which was about upper class society in England during the late 1800s.
Daniel F. Ashford (1879 – 1929) was a cotton planter in Louisiana and also held office in the Louisiana House of Representatives.