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header3 Stannard family, originally from Long Stratton, Norfolk...

Origins of the Stannard surname, courtesy of

""This interesting surname of pre 7th century Olde English origins. It derives from the given name "Stanheard", composed of the elements "stan" meaning stone plus "heard" meaning hardy, brave or strong. As a personal or baptismal name it is typical of the period of history known as the Dark Ages, when the people of Europe longed for strong government in a time of great anarchy and lawlessness. The surname is much later, although even then one of the first to be created anywhere in the world. This was in the century following the Norman Conquest of England in 1066. The Normans certainly gave the country peace, however in so doing they also tried to destroy the Anglo-Saxon culture. This is a name which has survived the political correctness of that, and should be treasured for that alone. Early examples of the surname recording include: Ralph Stanhard in the pipe rolls of the city of Ely, Cambridgeshire in 1221, and Laurence Stannard in the Subsidy Rolls also of Cambridgeshire in 1327. Spelling forms of the modern surname include: Stannard, Stonard, Stonhard, Stonner, Stanett, Stennard and others. Examples of the surname recording in surviving early church registers include: Astyne Stannarde who married Amyes Valle on April 24th 1576, at St. Mary Somerset, city of London, and Janne Stannard who married Lawrence Lytton on August 7th 1594 at St. Katherine by the Tower (of London)."

My own family tree research started with 'finding' my great-grandfather, Robert James STANNARD, born 1870, Warrnambool, Victoria, Australia, son of William Nelson STANNARD and Catherine HARTILL.  Robert James Stannard died in Pietermaritzburg, South Africa, in 1917 and I was able to find information leading to a copy of his will on NAAIRS, the South African Archives online search engine.  As he had died in 1917 my father (his grandson), knew very little about him.  With the information he was able to give me ("he was a Stannard, a civil engineer and lived in Pietermaritzburg"), I was able to find my him, and through him trace his family back to Australia, thence to London and finally...after having to resort to the fairly desperate means (for a South African) of ordering his grand-father, Nelson Stannard's (sometimes known as William Nelson Stannard, sometimes as Horatio Nelson Stannard) marriage Long Stratton, Norfolk, and from there to the earliest Stannard ancestor I've managed to find so far, Edmund STANNARD, born in about 1650.

Robert James STANNARD and his wife, Mary PHILLIPS (born in Bendigo, Victoria, Australia on 10 Sep 1874) arrived in South Africa from Australia in about 1899.  After settling in Pietermaritzburg, he worked as a civil engineer and occasional architect until his early death in 1917.  While growing up, I heard that he had a hand in the design of the Royal Palace Gardens in Bangkok, Thailand, a rumour that I've been unable to substantiate; and that he had been responsible for the construction of the first ever suspension bridge in South Africa in Pietermaritzburg, although this seems unlikely as a suspension bridge was built over the Msunduzi River in 1860, 10 years before his birth!  He certainly did participate in a number of building projects in Pietermaritzburg, but I've been unable to determine exactly which buildings these were, and he applied to bring specialised labour into the country from Australia and England on two occasions. Robert James Stannard, b 1870

William Nelson Stannard and Catherine Hartill had emigrated from England to Australia in about 1865, shortly before his birth.

So far we've managed to trace 'our Stannards' back to Edmund Stannard, born in about 1720-1759, who lived in Long Stratton, Norfolk.  He and his family appear to have been farmers, tradesmen (butcher) and some soldiers.

Since 1800 this family has spread far and wide across the world into Australia, Canada and South Africa.

Without the ongoing help and interest of my father, Neil Phillip Stannard, I would never have started this research, and this page, together with the Saunders page, is dedicated to his memory.

My current brick walls in researching the Stannard Family are:
- Edmund Stannard (b abt 1650), married Cordelia RAWLING in Norwich, Norfolk on 19 Sep 1676;
- the fate and more information about the 'original' Nelson Stannard, there is some confusion as to whether he was William Nelson Stannard (b 1798, Long Stratton, Norfolk), son of Thomas Stannard & Ann; or Horatio Nelson Stannard (b 1802, Long Stratton, Norfolk), son of the same.  I've not been able to find anything definite one way or the other, and am still looking, ordering a few death certificates is beginning to look increasingly likely.

Surnames linked to the our branch of the Stannard family since about 1650...

Cave    Cock    Halls    Hartill    Phillips    Rawling    Rose    Saunders

Other resources & links which have been useful in my research into the Stannard family of Long Stratton. Norfolk:
Incoll Family Genealogy;
Susan O' Neill's Research;

Family names encountered in my research include:

  • Abbott
  • Berlin
  • Broome
  • Cave
  • Chambers
  • Cowlin
  • Crane
  • Davidge
  • Felton
  • Fussel
  • Gilbert
  • Girle
  • Goshen
  • Hartill
  • Harvey
  • Heath
  • Ings
  • Knuckey
  • Maidment
  • Mercer
  • Minchington
  • Oppy
  • Phillips
  • Saddington
  • Sadler
  • Seller
  • Spargo
  • Stares
  • Street
  • Tregoning
  • Tucker
  • Vincent
  • Wake
  • Whelpley
  • Wyatt


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