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STAIR Family History

This unusual and interesting name is of Anglo-Saxon origin, and is found particularly in the southern English counties of Kent, Hampshire, Surrey and Sussex. The surname is topographical, and derives from the Olde English pre 7th Century word 'staeger' meaning 'stair', used in the transferred sense of an ascent or rise in the ground. The element can be seen in placenames such as Stairbridge farm in Bolney, and Steer's Common, in Sussex, and in the Stair, in Kent. Locational names were usually given to the Lord of the manor and especially to those former inhabitants who left to live or work in another area.

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