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Bradford Family HistoryThis ancient and distinguished surname is of Anglo-Saxon origin, and is a locational name from any of the places so called, large and small; in particular the city of Bradford in West Yorkshire, which was originally a wool town. There are others in Derbyshire, Devonshire, Dorset, Greater Manchester, Norfolk, Somerset, and elsewhere. They all take their names from the Olde English pre 7th Century "brad" meaning broad, plus "ford", ford. During the Middle Ages when it was increasingly common for people to migrate from their birthplace to seek work further afield, the custom developed that they would adopt the placename as a means of identification.
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