This interesting name of mixed origin has three possible sources, the first being that it is either a topographical name for someone who lived near a large house, or an occupational name for a person who was employed at a hall or manor. The derivation of each, being from the Olde English pre 7th Century "heall", the Old German "halla", and Old Norse "holl", meaning hall. Lastly, this may be a locational surname from any of the places so called, for example Hall in Lancashire, Carmarthenshire and Roxburghshire. Nichol del Hall was "merchant of the duke of Albany" in 1400, and William de Hall, held a land in Irvine (1426). One John Hall, born 1584, in Kent emigrated to New England in 1632 and founded a notable American family that included Lyman Hall, politician and signatory of the Declaration of Independence, Asaph Hall, Astronomer, and Stanley hall a Pioneer in psychophysics. There are over fifty entries of this name in the "Dictionary of National Biography", amongst the Admirals and Bishops was recorded one John Hall, author, who wrote the "Memoirs of the Right Viallneous John Hall". The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Warin de Halla, which was dated 1178, in the "Pipe Rolls of Essex", during the reign of King Henry 11, known as "The Builder of Churches", 1154 - 1189. 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.