A person does not have the privilege of choosing his surname but when one is fortunate enough to be born with a good name, it is his duty to keep it respectable and unblemished. We who bear the name Godbold are proud of it and mean to do what we can to keep it a good name.
Godbold is of Teutonic origin and the original meaning was "good dwelling." I would like to think of our name as meaning: One who is bold in his stand for God and His word.
Among the various early spellings are found Godbealdt, Godbeald, Godebold, Godbould, Godbolt, Goodbolt, and Godbold. Probably the earliest record of the name in England is found in the Domesday Book, 1085, the name of a former Anglo-Saxon tenant who spelled it Godebold. Robert Godbold was the first owner of Evers Hall after the Norman Conquest.
Later records of the name include:
Although the name was rather prominent in Surrey, Essex and Suffolk shires or counties before 1830 (these families had a coat of arms and crest), the name seems to have disappeared altogether from England by 1936, according to Mr. John Couston, Director of Caldwell Brothers, Limited, Edinburgh, Scotland.
Our ancestor who came to America was a member of one of the Godbold families of Suffolk or Kent. The coat of arms of our family ancestor, John Godbold, is thus described:
Arms: "Azure, two bows strung, in saltire, or." Crest: "An arm in armour proper, wreathed about the arm or and azure, with the ends flotant, holding in the gauntlet an arrow sable, feathered and headed argent." [See Figure 1.]
Bishop Gregg said of the early Godbold families in South Carolina:
"As a family, they have always stood high as men of decided character, pluck and energy."
Figure 1: Godbold crest illustration, Page 2.