Origin of the surname Higdon
Source: Higdon Family Newsletter, February 1972, Number 2, page 4, Editor Jo Ann Smith
THE NAME AND FAMILY OF HIGDON, compiled by The Media Research Bureau:
The surname HIGDON is of somewhat uncertain origin. One writer on the origin of surnames says of it: "Baptismal, "the son of Higdon" (?). So the evidence seems to prove: but it has a very local appearance.” The first syllable of the name is sometimes a shortened form of the personal name of Hugh, which means "intellectual", and at other times is a nickname for Richard, which means "strong ruler". The second syllable may be the familiar shortened form of the English down, meaning "the slope of a hill", in which case the name is probably of local origin and derived from the residence of its first bearers at a place called Hig's Down or Higdon. In ancient English and early American records the name appears in the various spellings of Higden, Higton, Higdon, and others, of which the last is the form most frequently in evidence in America in modern times.
Possibly the earliest record of the name in England is that of one John "Hikedun", who was living in Worcestershire in the year 1273. In 1379 one "Higdon de Synesby" was living in Yorkshire. John Higden, who was resident at Epperstone, in Yorkshire, about the middle of the sixteenth century, may have been descended from the last-mentioned Higdon of Synesby, but this is conjectural.
John Higden, of Epperstone, married Bridgett, daughter of Edward Odingsells, of Nottinghamshire, and was the father by her of a son named John, who married Ann, daughter of Henry Parkins, of Fishlake. John and Ann had issued at Epperstone of at least one son, another John Higden, who was living in 1612 at Laxton, County York, and probably left issue there by his wife Margaret, who was a daughter of John Cator of Lancashire.
In the early seventeenth century one John Higdon, "gentleman", was living at St. Clement Danes, London. In 1640, at thirty years of age, he married Joane Durden of St. Martin-in-the-Fields. Little is know of the London line but in 1740 one Daniel Higden, of London, was married at St. George, Hanover Square, to Margaret Clifton, of that place.
The first of the name in America was Peter Higden, who emigrated from Salisbury in Wiltshire to America about the year 1635. He was lost in the great storm of that year, being wrecked with his master, Anthony Thacher, on Cape Ann.
There was a family of the name early resident in Maryland. Probably the progenitor of this line was John Higton or Higdon, who died in Prince George’s County, Maryland, in 1723….. About the origin of the name HIGDON..it means 'dweller on a high hill'. A high hill was called a dunn in Northern England and still is in Scotland