Who Do You Think You Are?

Herefordsh­ire Surnames



This patronymic comes from the Middle English personal name Addy.


This name is thought to derive from the patronymic of Einion/Eynon, which is an Old Welsh personal name.


Brace used to be an occupation­al name for a maker or seller of armour.


This derives from a nickname for someone who has a hunched back.


Meredith is another surname that is derived from a Welsh personal name, in this case Maredudd.

The county’s proximity to Wales has influenced local surnames


The anglicised form of the Welsh ap Hywel (“son of Hywel”) is the 91st most common surname in the UK.


About a quarter of the Preeces who were recorded in the 1891 census were living in Herefordsh­ire.


The anglicised form of the Welsh ap Rhisiart (“son of Richard”) is common throughout the West Midlands and Lancashire.


Herefordsh­ire, Monmouthsh­ire and Glamorgan together had approximat­ely 40 per cent of all of the Prossers who were recorded in the 1891 census. a large swathe of south-east Herefordsh­ire, extending as far north as Ledbury.

On the opposite side of the county, another group of volunteers has assembled a virtual local and family history centre at ewyaslacy.org.uk. Rhys says that this site, which is packed with a rich variety of local sources from parish registers to land tax returns, is key for anyone with ancestors in the Golden Valley.

HARC’s own website includes a database of prisoners drawn from registers covering 1849–1915. The entries can be searched by name, and sorted by parish and offence. Probate records from 1700 to 1858, comprising some 40,000 entries, can also be searched. And Rhys reports that staff will shortly be adding the remaining probate records from 1540, so that all of the testamenta­ry records held here will be searchable online.

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