Origin, Meaning and Family History of the Stead Name
Origins of Stead:
This unique name has many spelling forms such as Stead, Steed, Steade, and Stede, and has two possible origins, both Olde English. The first is a regional surname from a region in the West Riding of Yorkshire named as “Stead.” It was named from the pre 7th Century word “stede,” which means a land, or large field. As previous examples, Richard de Stede of the division of Lancashire in the year 1276, and Roberd Del Stede, of the division of Yorkshire, in 1336, are the first listed name ancestors from this origin. The second origin of the name may acquire from the word “steda,” which means a studding-horse or stallion, and frequently given as a pet name to a person of courage or high spirits. As examples from this origin, Henry le Stede was listed in the record known as the Eynsham Cartulary of Oxfordshire, in 1281. After that example derived at random from old remaining parish records those contains of Bucknell Stead, the son of Ezekill Stead, who named at St. George’s Church, East Stonehouse, in the town of Devonport, Devonshire, in April 1641, and in SeSeptember 1690Anne Stead named at the popular parish of St. Martin in the Fields, Westminster, City of London.
More common variations are: Steady, Steade, Steadi, Stewad, Steyad, Steadt, Steadd, Sted, Steuad, Stad.
The origins of the surname Stead were found in Yorkshire where people held a family seat from early times.
The very first recorded spelling of the family was shown to be that of VC hired Stede, dated about 1180, in the “Pipe Rolls of the division of Devonshire. It was during the time of King Henry Lind, who was known to be the “The Builder of Churches,” dated 1154-1189. The origin of surnames during this period became a necessity with the introduction of personal taxation. It came to be known as Poll Tax in England. Surnames all over the country began to develop, with unique and shocking spelling variations of the original one.
Many of the people with surname Stead had moved to Ireland during the 17th century.
United States of America:
Individuals with the surname Stead settled in the United States in four different centuries respectively in the 17th, 18th, 19th and 20th. Some of the individuals with the name Stead who landed in the United States in the 17th century included Thomas Stead who settled in Virginia in 1649. John Stead, who landed in Virginia in 1657.
People with the surname Stead who settled in the United States in the 18th century included Elizabeth Stead settled in New York State in 1774. Thomas Stead settled in Cape Fear North Carolina in 1774.
The following century saw more Stead surnames arrive. Some of the population with the surname Stead who arrived in the United States in the 19th century included Caroline, Daniel, Frederick, and George Stead settled in New York State in 1820. Thomas Stead landed in New York in 1832.
George Stead originally from Trinity Bay, Newfoundland, arrived in New York in 1919 aboard the ship “Rosalind” from St. John’s Newfoundland during the 20th century.
Some of the people with the surname Stead who landed in Canada in the 19th century included Mr. Stead arrived in Prince Edward Island in 1817.
People with the surname Stead who settled in Australia in the 19th century included John Stead, Eliza Stead and Cicely Mary, all arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship “katherine Stewart Forbes” in the same year 1839.
Some of the individuals with the surname Stead who settled in New Zealand in the 19th century included Thomas Stead arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship “Maori” in 1864. George William Stead, Maria Stead, Rosa M. Stead and George William Stead, all arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship “Dallam Tower” in the same year 1875.
Here is the population distribution of the last name Stead: England 7,244; United States 3,436; South Africa 3,032; Australia 1,539; Canada 1,526; New Zealand 582; Wales 361; Scotland 341; France 233; Ecuador 92.
Eugene A. Stead (1908–2005), was an American scientist.
Gary Stead (born 1972), is a New Zealand cricket player.
Jon Stead (born 1983), is an English football player.
Martin Stead (born 1958), is a Canadian cricket player.
Stead Coat of Arms Meaning
The four main devices (symbols) in the Stead blazon are the bear, lion rampant, salamander and flaunch. The two main tinctures (colors) are sable and azure.
Sable, the deep black so often found in Heraldry is believed to named from an animal of the marten family know in the middle ages as a Sabellinœ and noted for its very black fur . In engravings, when colors cannot be shown it is represented as closely spaced horizontal and vertical lines, and appropriately is thus the darkest form of hatching, as this method is known . Although it may seem a sombre tone, and does indeed sometimes denote grief, it is more commonly said to represent Constancy .
The bright, strong blue color in Heraldry is known in English as azure, and similarly in other European languages – azul in Spanish, azurro in Italian and azur in French. The word has its roots in the Arabic word lazura, also the source of the name of the precious stone lapis lazuli . Despite this, those heralds who liked to associate colours with jewels chose instead to describe blue as Sapphire. According to Wade, the use of this colour symbolises “Loyalty and Truth” .
The bear is more common in the arms of continental Europe than in British arms (possibly due to the lack of bears native to that country!), although the county of Warwickshire famously includes a bear in its arms. Wade tells us that the bear is the “emblem of ferocity and the protection of kindred”.
There can be no animal more clearly associated with Heraldry than the lion, majestic King of the Beasts. Originally it appeared only in one pose, erect, on one paw, with the others raised but such was the popularity of this figure, and the need to distinguish arms from each other, that it soon came to be shown in an enormous range of forms . The lion rampant is an example of these modified form, and any family would be proud to have such a noble creature displayed on their arms. Rampant is the default attitude of the lion, raised on its hind legs, facing to the dexter and with front paws extended in a fearsome and powerful pose.
In the mediaeval period there was no real percieved difference between real and mythical animals, after all, much of the world remained unknown and who was to say what strange and magical creatures existed in distant lands? As heraldry developed a whole menagerie of imagined creatures came into being, and their various representations became more or less standardised in form and appearance. The phoenix Is a typical example of a mythical creature, as real to a person of the middle ages as dogs, cats and elephants are to us today.Although it is not the usage today, salamander is a heraldic term for the phoenix.