Derived from the Anglo Saxon pre 8th century 'paere-ea' meaning 'the low lying land near the water', plus 'ham' - a homestead, or locational from the town of Raynham in Essex, this name is heraldic and is twice quoted in the record of Arms (Burkes). The first Coat of Arms was black, charged with three silver martlets, the second from Apledram, in Sussex and believed to be of later origin is silver, charged with a chevron between three escallops in ermine. The title of Viscount Raynham, now extinct, is that of the eldest son of the Marquis of Townsend whilst Lt. Frederick Raynham was the D.S.O in the Boer War and apparently stayed on in South Africa The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Lt. Frederick Raynham D.S.O. which was dated 1899 Kimberley, South Africa during the reign of Queen Victoria, the Great White Queen 1837-1901 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.