Family names are an essential part of everyone's personal history. The story of their evolution is integral to family history and fascinating in its own right. Formed from first names, place names, nicknames and occupations, names allow us to trace the movements of our ancestors from the middle ages to the present day. David Hey shows how, when and where families first got their names, and proves that most families stayed close to their places of origin. Settlement patterns and family groupings can be traced back towards their origin by using national and local records. Family Names and Family History tells anyone interested in tracing their own name how to set about doing so.