Norman Surname Genealogy

The Norman surname in England may have derived from the Normans of
Normandy who had invaded England with William the Conqueror in 1066; or
it may have come from the Old English northmann,
being a term describing
Scandinavian settlers.
In America it
could also be of Jewish or Swedish or even possibly of Dutch
origin. Van Norman and variants were early names found in Dutch
New York and Pennsylvania.

Norman Resources on

Norman Ancestry

London provided some early mentions of the Norman name.

London. John
Norman was recorded as mayor of London in 1250. A later John
, born in Oxfordshire, was in 1453 the first Lord
Mayor of London to take a boat to Westminster in order to pledge
his allegiance.

James Norman of Blackfriars was a successful timber merchant in London
in the mid 1700’s. With the proceeds he bought property in nearby
Bromley Common, at the time when it was a dangerous place.

“When James went to work in London he
rode on horseback. He would be armed and accompanied by an armed
servant. The danger was real. His daughter-in-law had been
robbed by footpads on Chislehurst Hill as she returned to Bromley
Common after visiting friends.”

The Normans’ house there, The Rookery,
was to remain their home until it burnt down in 1946. Via George Warde
of this family came the notable Norman banking
family, including Montagu
Norman who was Governor of the Bank of England from 1920 to 1944.

Elsewhere. John Norman
was mayor of Norwich in 1714. When he died ten years
later he provided funds In his will for the education of the children
of needy relatives in the town.

Norman also appears to have been a name of the southwest, featuring
most strongly in Devon and Somerset. Richard Norman, the early
emigrant to America, was born in Charminster, Dorset. Normans
there were clockmakers and Quakers
. And there were
Normans to be found in the Mendip hills, in Somerset, Wiltshire and

There were Normans as well further north. Normans in the village
Duffield in Derbyshire date from the 1500’s. They held Court Farm House
for many generations. Normans were also recorded in the
nearby Staffordshire villages of Uttoxeter and Abbots Bromley.

. Richard Norman, a sea captain and shipwright, was
part of a group of settlers from the Dorchester company in Dorset who
came to New England in 1626. He eventually settled in Marblehead,
Massachusetts. Later Normans of this family moved to South
Carolina and Georgia.

Several Normans came to Virginia during the
1600’s. Some stayed in the area. Others moved onto New
Jersey, Ohio, and Illinois. Isaac
was born in Virginia in 1682 and he
and his wife Frances raised nine children in Culpeper county.
Their descendants later spread, in particular to Tennessee and Georgia. This line was traced in Nellie Virginia
Norman’s 1972 book History of the
Culpeper County Normans.

New Jersey
Oliver Norman started a forge in Sussex county, New Jersey
(by Norman’s Pond) in the years after the Revolutionary War. His
father John, also a forgeman, had come to upstate New York from England
in the 1740’s. Oliver left his wife and family and took off for
Ohio in 1808.

Also from Sussex county, born there in 1796, was
Joseph Van Norman, a descendant of the Pennsylvania Van Normans. He subsequently departed for Canada where he started an iron foundry
in Normandale, Ontario.

Canada. Normans
from Poole in Dorset were early settlers in Newfoundland, John Norman
in Brigus sometime in the 1750’s. Thomas
Norman of this family was a carpenter and, after a great fire destroyed
center of the capital St. Johns in 1892, he moved there with his family
there was an abundance of work in rebuilding the city.

Australia. Andrew Norman
was the anglicized name of a young Norwegian seaman Andreas Olsen who
came to Melbourne in 1876 and stayed. He died in 1898 from a
horse kick in the abdomen, leaving a young family. His sons Ollie
and Harry were both World War One volunteers. Ollie did not
back. Harry did, having been dishonorably discharged. He
changed his name to Skinner back in Australia.

Norman Miscellany

If you would like to read more, click on the miscellany page for
further stories and accounts:

Norman Names

John Norman was the Lord Mayor of London in 1453. He was
the first Lord Mayor to take a boat to Westminster in order to pledge
his allegiance.
Robert Norman was a 16th
century mariner and compass builder. The crater Norman on the
moon was named in his honor.
Montagu Norman was Governor of
the Bank of England from 1920 to 1944.
is an American playwright, screenwriter, and
novelist. She won the 1993 Pulitzer Prize for her play ‘night Mother.
Greg Norman is a well-known
golfer, nicknamed “the Great White Shark.”

Select Normans Today

  • 30,000 in the UK (most numerous
    in Berkshire)
  • 25,000 in America (most numerous in California)
  • 20,000 elsewhere (most numerous in Canada)



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