This surname made famous by Sir Bernard and Lady Docker during the 1950's period, is English and surprisingly is not job descriptive, but locational. It originates from either of two small hamlets called "Docker", in Westmoreland and Lancashire. The name means "the grazing land in the valley" from the pre 7th century Olde Norse-Viking "dokr" The village in Westmoreland appears in the charters of the county for the year 1155 as "Docherga". The surname is much later and not recorded before the 16th century. This suggests that possibly the village was "cleared" in the period of the Enclosure Acts which occupied parliamentary time for over three hundred years between 1450 and 1750. Under these acts the village tenants were gradually deprived of their common grazing, and were then forced off the land to seek homes and employment elsewhere. When this happened the unfortunate people were given or took as their surname, the name of their former village. Early examples of the surname recordings include Elizabeth Docker, in the Wills List of the county of Lancashire, recorded at Richmond in Yorkshire, in 1579, and William Docker, in the same lists, but in 1587. The first of all known recordings was not in the north at all but in London. Here in 1564 Robert, the son of Thomas Docker, was christened at St James church, Clerkenwell, but sadly in 1565, only one year later, Thomas died and was buried at the same church. This was during the reign of Queen Elizabeth 1st, 1558 - 1603.

Surnames reference. 2013.

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