Badcock

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A surname of England, from a compound of Bat(e), a pet name for Bartholomew, from the Hebrew - 'son of Talmai', 'abounding in furrows' and cock (see ALCOCK), or from an Old English personal name Bada. See also BATTCOCK, with which confusion is not unlikely, and BARTLE, BARTLETT, BATEMAN, BATTES, BATTEN. (Withycombe, Reaney). Guppy traced the name in Devon, Berkshire and Somerset.

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At Ferryland: Colonial Records: October 10, 1770 - Tobin, Dennis. This Brickus (sic) resident complained that another boatkeeper has stolen four barrows of fish: Badcock, John.
  District Court Actions: June 6, 1791 - Badcock, John - Ordered to survey stage head in Brigus.
  District Court Actions: October 8, 1795 - Badcock, John - Member of the jury in Kenny (and others) theft case.
  District Court Actions: March ??, 1807 - Badcock, ??? - Sued this Brigus resident for money owed: Sloane, ???
  District Court Actions: November 1, 1807 - Badcock, ??? Charged Conners with neglect of duty but was found guilty of supplying him with liquor.
  Surrogate Court Records: December 11, 1816 - Badcock, John - Occupied fishing rooms sold to John Morry in Brigus.
  Surrogate Court Records: October 21, 1818 - Coryear, Henry - Sued: Battcock, John.
  Surrogate Court Records: October 9, 1819 - Battcock, John - Sued: Hickey and Co.
  Supreme Court Records: May 23, 1826 - William Badcock & John Badcock, - Members of Petty Jury.
  District Court Actions: February 7, 1831 - Badcock, John - This Brigus resident was assaulted by Lawrence Brophy.
  District Court Actions: February 23, 1835 - Badcock, William - Appointed surveyor of highways in Brigus.
At Caplin Bay: Ferryland Census 1800: John Badcock, Mary Badcock, William - 5, John - 2, Mary - 7.
  A list of names of all Masters, Servants, and Dieters residing in the District of Ferryland for the Winter of 1799 & Spring of 1800: John Badcock, Master with one dieter, Philip McDaniel, living with him.
At Brigus South: Voter's List for Brigus: 1840, 1841, 1842, 1844, 1845, 1846 - William Badcock; 1847 - William & Michael Badcock; 1849, 1852 - William Badcock; 1855 - William, John & Thomas Badcock; 1859 - John, Michael, Thomas, & Peter Badcock.
Family History: Most of the oldest records, directly or indirectly, associate the Badcock family exclusively with Brigus South. However, for reasons unknown, they chose to overwinter at Caplin Bay in 1799/1800. The 'List of Inhabitants' enumerated that winter indicates that the Badcocks resided in the same household as Philip McDaniel, an elderly long-time Irish resident. This detail could suggest a possible kinship, likely through Mary Battcock. The 'List of Inhabitants' also disclosed that, during that winter, Michael and Alice Power had twin girls. Again, we are left to wonder if kinship may have had some bearing on the presence of the Badcock family. In this era, doctors were scarce, so family females often filled the void by serving as midwives to one another. Other than this listing of the Badcock surname at Caplin Bay, there is no other evidence that the Badcock family lived there for any extended length of time. This event could have been a one-time over-wintering event.

According to surviving records, John Badcock had been in the Ferryland area as far back as 1770. Family research acknowledges that John was from Devon, England and was initially a boatkeeper in Brigus. In keeping with his ethnic origin, John was likely of the Church of England faith. However, it is clear that his children were Roman Catholic; his wife Mary, in all likelihood, being a Roman Catholic. A strong commitment to the Roman Catholic faith was fostered in this family since, in later generations, two of John's descendants were Roman Catholic priests.

Local folklore about the surname change from Badcock to Battcock relates that after the family's conversion to Catholicism, the surname spelling changed to make them appear "more Catholic." However, research shows that the surname remained as Badcock for well over half a century before it was eventually changed to Bat(t)cock. It is not clear if the name change was deliberate, as folklore suggests, or if it was due to phonetic misspellings. Surname research in the Church of England records of Devon, England indicates that the spellings Badcock, Batcock, Battcock and sometimes Babcock were used interchangeably, depending on the officiating clergy. One of the earliest mentions of the surname related to Brigus (South), spelled with a single 't' instead of a 'd', was for Thomas Batcock. He became an elected Member of the Newfoundland House of Assembly for Ferryland District in 1869.
Present Status: The family surname as Battcock still survives at Brigus South. Like many other families, Badcock descendants still live in and around Brigus South, throughout Newfoundland, the rest of Canada, and the U.S.A.

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