This interesting surname of English origin is a locational name from any of the various places called Alford, three in particular, one in Surrey (recorded as Aldeford in the 14th Century), deriving from the old English pre 7th Century "eald" meaning "old" plus "ford", "ford", one in Somerset (Aldedeford in the Domesday Book), of which the first element is the Old English pre 7th Century female personal name Ealdgyo, composed of the elements "eald" meaning "old" plus "gyo" "battle", and one in Lancashire (recorded as Alforde in the Domesday Book of 1086) of which the first element is probably either the Old English pre 7th Century "alor" meaning "alder" or "(e)alh", "temple" or "shrine". There is also a place in the former county of Aberdeen. The surname dates back to the late 13th Century, (see below). Variations in the idiom of the spelling include Alsford, Allsford, Alesford, Alsforde, etc.. John, son of John Alsforde was christened on April 30th 1602, at St. Botolph without Aldgate, London, and Elizabeth Alsford was christened at St. Dunstan Stepney, London on October 17th 1669. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of John de Aldeforde, which was dated 1273, "The Hundred Rolls of Herefordshire", during the reign of King Edward 1, "The Hammer of the Scots", 1272 - 1307. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.