This interesting name may have derived from a number of possible origins. Firstly it may be a Scottish occupational name from the Gaelic "bard", poet, minstrel. It may also be of Scottish locational origin from a place not identified, as one Henry de Barde and Richard de Baard are early forms of the name, with "de", meaning "from". Also the Germanic personal name "Bardo" ("barta" axe) may also have given rise to the name. The name also may have derived from several minor places in France called "Bar(d)", from the Gaulish element "barro", height, hill. Finally, it may be a French metonymic occupational name for someone who used a handcart or barrow in his work, from the Old French "bard", barrow. In 1228, the great titles of the land of Richard de Baard, lying on the south side of the Avon, were granted to the monks of Lesmahagow Scotland and sometime before 1240, Richard Bard gave to the same monks, the whole land of Little Kup, which was confirmed by King Alexander 11 in 1240. One Sir David Baird (1757-1829), served at Gibraltar and was created Baronet in 1810, Governor of Kinsale 1819 and commander of Irish forces and privy councillor in 1820. John Baird (d. 1891), constructed New Yorks elevated railway. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Henry de Barde, which was dated circa 1202, witnessed the gift by Thomas de Haya to the House of Soltre, during the reign of King William, "The Lion", 1165 - 1214. 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.