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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright 2000 - 2014

Where did the English Farr family come from? When did the Farr family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the Farr family history?

The name Farr is of Anglo-Saxon origin. It was name for a person who was described as being fierce or lusty. The surname is derived from the Old English word farr, which meant bull.

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Spelling variations in names were a common occurrence before English spelling was standardized a few hundred years ago. In the Middle Ages, even the literate spelled their names differently as the English language incorporated elements of French, Latin, and other European languages. Many variations of the name Farr have been found, including Farr, Farre and others.

First found in Yorkshire where they held a family seat from early times.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Farr research. Another 315 words(22 lines of text) covering the years 1381 and 1400 are included under the topic Early Farr History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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More information is included under the topic Early Farr Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Some of the Farr family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 144 words(10 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Families began migrating abroad in enormous numbers because of the political and religious discontent in England. Often faced with persecution and starvation in England, the possibilities of the New World attracted many English people. Although the ocean trips took many lives, those who did get to North America were instrumental in building the necessary groundwork for what would become powerful new nations. Among early immigrants of the Farr surname to cross the Atlantic and come to North America were:

Farr Settlers in the United States in the 17th Century


  • Barnabas Farr settled in New England in 1620
  • Edward Farr settled in St. Christopher in 1635
  • Edward Farr, aged 28, landed in St Christopher in 1635
  • Mary Farr, who landed in Virginia in 1650
  • Mary Farr settled in Virginia in 1650


Farr Settlers in the United States in the 18th Century


  • Judith Farr, who landed in Virginia in 1702
  • AnnaMaria Farr, who arrived in America in 1750

Farr Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century


  • Wilhelm Farr, aged 39, landed in New York in 1849
  • Willson Farr, who landed in San Francisco, California in 1851
  • James Farr, who landed in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1854
  • Henry Farr, who arrived in St Clair County, Illinois in 1862

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  • Diane Farr (b. 1969), American actress
  • Jamie Farr (b. 1934), born Jameel Joseph Farah, American television and film actor best known for his role in M*A*S*H
  • William Farr (1807-1883), English statistician
  • Dennis Farr, director of the city Museums and Art Gallery in Birmingham, England
  • Air vice-Marshall Peter Farr, director of several trust funds in Buckinghamshire, England
  • Bruce K. Farr OBE (b. 1949), New Zealand designer of racing and cruising yachts for the World Cup
  • Gareth Farr ONZM (b. 1968), New Zealand composer and percussionist
  • James Alfred Farr (b. 1956), former Major League Baseball pitcher
  • Derrick Capel Farr (1912-1986), British actor


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  • The Ancestors and Descendants of Julius E. Farr by Mileta Farr Kilroy.
  • The Family of Willis Vernon Farr: Past and Present Including Descendants of His Grandfather, Ivah Newton Farr, and a Number of Female Lines by Jayne E. Bickford.
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  1. Browning, Charles H. Americans of Royal Descent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  2. Zieber, Eugene. Heraldry in America. Philadelphia: Genealogical Publishing Co. Print.
  3. Bullock, L.G. Historical Map of England and Wales. Edinburgh: Bartholomew and Son, 1971. Print.
  4. Hitching, F.K and S. Hitching. References to English Surnames in 1601-1602. Walton On Thames: 1910. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0181-3).
  5. Crispin, M. Jackson and Leonce Mary. Falaise Roll Recording Prominent Companions of William Duke of Normandy at the Conquest of England. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  6. Bede, The Venerable. Historia Ecclesiatica Gentis Anglorum (The Ecclesiastical History Of the English People). Available through Internet Medieval Sourcebook the Fordham University Centre for Medieval Studies. Print.
  7. Burke, Sir Bernard. General Armory Of England, Scotland, Ireland and Wales. Ramsbury: Heraldry Today. Print.
  8. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  9. Elster, Robert J. International Who's Who. London: Europa/Routledge. Print.
  10. Hanks, Patricia and Flavia Hodges. A Dictionary of Surnames. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988. Print. (ISBN 0-19-211592-8).
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This page was last modified on 16 July 2012 at 11:00.

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