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

Origins Available: English, Scottish

Where did the English Foster family come from? What is the English Foster family crest and coat of arms? When did the Foster family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the Foster family history?

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Although the name, Foster, appeared in many references, from time to time, the surname was shown with the spellings Forrester, Forester, Forrest, Forster, Foster, Forrestor and many more.

First found in Northumberland where they held a family seat from very ancient times, some say well before the Norman Conquest and the arrival of Duke William at Hastings in 1066 A.D.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Foster research. Another 215 words(15 lines of text) covering the years 1379, 1589, 1663, 1648, 1681, 1617, 1692, 1635, 1698 and are included under the topic Early Foster History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Another 129 words(9 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Foster Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Some of the Foster family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 173 words(12 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Gradually becoming disenchanted with life in Ireland many of these uprooted families sailed aboard the armada of sailing ships known as the "White Sails" which plied the stormy Atlantic. These overcrowded ships often arrived with only 60 to 70% of their original passenger list, many dying of cholera, typhoid, dysentery or small pox. In North America, some of the first immigrants who could be considered kinsmen of the Foster family name Foster, or who bore a variation of the surname were

Foster Settlers in the United States in the 17th Century


  • Samuel Foster, who arrived in New England in 1619
  • John Foster, to Virginia in 1623
  • John Foster, who landed in Jamestown, Va in 1624
  • Thomas Foster, who arrived in America in 1634
  • Sylas Foster, aged 22, arrived in Virginia in 1635


Foster Settlers in the United States in the 18th Century


  • Daniel] Foster, who landed in Virginia in 1700
  • Thos Foster, who landed in Virginia in 1714
  • Phillis Foster, who arrived in Virginia in 1714
  • Julian Foster, who arrived in Virginia in 1717
  • Sam Foster, who landed in South Carolina in 1728


Foster Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century


  • Martha Foster, aged 22, arrived in New York, NY in 1803
  • Charles Foster, who arrived in America in 1805
  • Alex Foster, who arrived in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1808
  • Arthur Foster, aged 22, landed in New York in 1812
  • George S Foster, aged 27, arrived in New York in 1812


Foster Settlers in the United States in the 20th Century


  • Chamberlain Burke Foster, aged 25, landed in Mississippi in 1907
  • Louis Samuel Foster, who arrived in Alabama in 1912
  • Lee Peter Foster, who landed in Alabama in 1921
  • Alfred Scott Foster, who landed in Alabama in 1921
  • Edward Augustus Foster, who landed in Alabama in 1926


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  • Lawrence Foster (b. 1941), American conductor
  • Stephen Collins Foster (1826-1864), American songwriter and composer who wrote "My Old Kentucky Home", "Old Folks at Home" and "Jeanie with the Light Brown Hair", but died almost destitute in the Bellevue Hospital in New York
  • Susanna Foster (1924-2009), American film actress best known for her leading role as Christine in the 1943 film version of The Phantom of the Opera
  • Alicia Christian "Jodie" Foster (b. 1962), American actress, film director and producer with two Academy Awards,three Bafta Awards, two Golden Globe Awards, a Screen Actors Guild Award, and a People's Choice Award
  • John Watson Foster (1836-1917), American military man, journalist and diplomat
  • Sergeant Gary Evans Foster (1894-1951), United States Army soldier awarded the Medal of Honor
  • Brigadier-General George Burgess Jr. Foster (1884-1949), American Commanding Officer Tripler General Hospital (1939-1941)
  • Major-General Ivan Leon Foster (1896-1965), American Deputy Chief of Staff Allied Forces North Africa (1944-1945)
  • Abby Kelley Foster (1811-1887), American abolitionist and radical social reformer
  • Mr. Albert C Foster (d. 1912), aged 37, English Engineering Storekeeper from Southampton, Hampshire who worked aboard the RMS Titanic and died in the sinking

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  1. Reaney P.H and R.M. Wilson. A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X).
  2. Mills, A.D. Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4).
  3. Best, Hugh. Debrett's Texas Peerage. New York: Coward-McCann, 1983. Print. (ISBN 069811244X).
  4. Ingram, Rev. James. Translator Anglo-Saxon Chronicle 1823. Print.
  5. Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds. Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8).
  6. Fairbairn. Fairbain's book of Crests of the Families of Great Britain and Ireland, 4th Edition 2 volumes in one. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1968. Print.
  7. The Norman People and Their Existing Descendants in the British Dominions and the United States Of America. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0636-X).
  8. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  9. Thirsk, Joan. The Agrarian History of England and Wales. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press: 7 Volumes. Print.
  10. Hinde, Thomas Ed. The Domesday Book England's Heritage Then and Now. Surrey: Colour Library Books, 1995. Print. (ISBN 1-85833-440-3).
  11. ...

The Foster Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Foster Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

This page was last modified on 25 August 2014 at 12:03.

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