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

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

The origins of the name Harrison are with the Anglo-Saxon tribes of Britain. The name is derived from the personal name Henry. The personal name Henry arrived in England after the Norman Conquest of 1066, when William the Conqueror won the Battle of Hastings, killing King Harold, the last Saxon King of England. It is of Germanic origin, and arrived with the wave of immigration that followed King William into England from continental Europe. The surname Harrison is derived from a diminutive form of the name, Harry. The name means "the son of Henry."

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The first dictionaries that appeared in the last few hundred years did much to standardize the English language. Before that time, spelling variations in names were a common occurrence. The language was changing, incorporating pieces of other languages, and the spelling of names changed with it. Harrison has been spelled many different ways, including Harrison, Harryson, Harieson and others.

First found in Lancashire 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 Harrison research. Another 173 words(12 lines of text) covering the years 1590, 1669, 1640, 1669, 1579, 1656, 1583, 1655, 1621, 1640, 1606, 1660, 1685, 1713, 1797 and are included under the topic Early Harrison History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Another 239 words(17 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Harrison Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Some of the Harrison family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 147 words(10 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Thousands of English families in this era began to emigrate the New World in search of land and freedom from religious and political persecution. Although the passage was expensive and the ships were dark, crowded, and unsafe, those who made the voyage safely were rewarded with opportunities unavailable to them in their homeland. Research into passenger and immigration lists has revealed some of the very first Harrisons to arrive in North America:

Harrison Settlers in the United States in the 17th Century


  • Harmon Harrison settled in Virginia in 1607
  • Harmon Harrison, who arrived in Jamestown, Va in 1607
  • Rafe Harrison settled in Virginia in 1623
  • Benjamin Harrison, who arrived in Virginia in 1631
  • Hugh Harrison settled in Virginia in 1635


Harrison Settlers in the United States in the 18th Century


  • Coll Harrison, who landed in Virginia in 1700
  • Anne Harrison, who arrived in New England in 1718
  • Andrew Harrison, who landed in Virginia in 1719
  • Ellinor Harrison, who landed in Virginia in 1719
  • Elir Harrison, who landed in Carolina in 1724


Harrison Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century


  • George Harrison, who landed in New York, NY in 1832
  • David Harrison, who landed in New York in 1833
  • Henry George Harrison, who arrived in New York in 1835
  • James Harrison, who arrived in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1844
  • Asa J Harrison, who arrived in America in 1849


Harrison Settlers in the United States in the 20th Century


  • James Herbert Harrison, who arrived in Alabama in 1925

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  • President William Henry Harrison (1773-1841), American General, Ninth President of the United States in 1841
  • Albertis Sydney Harrison Jr. (1907-1995), American politician, governor of Virginia from 1962-1966
  • Thomas Alexander Harrison (1853-1930), award winning American painter
  • Wallace Kirkman Harrison (1895-1981), American architect, who designed the UN headquarters and the Lincoln Center
  • Caroline Lavinia Scott Harrison (1832-1892), American first lady, wife of President Harrison
  • Alvin Harrison (b. 1974), American athlete and Olympic Gold Medal winner (1996)
  • Kerry Harrison (b. 1965), American triple jumper and Olympic Gold Medal winner (1996)
  • George Russell Harrison (1898-1979), American physicist, Professor of Experimental Physics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1930, Dean of Science at MIT, recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom
  • President Benjamin Harrison (1833-1901), American politician, the 23rd President of the United States
  • Brigadier-General Eugene Lynch Harrison (1898-1981), American Chief of Information, Army Ground Force (1946-1948)

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  • The Venturers: The Hampton, Harrison, and Earle Families of Virginia, South Carolina, and Texas by Virginia G. Meynard.
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The motto was originally a war cry or slogan. Mottoes first began to be shown with arms in the 14th and 15th centuries, but were not in general use until the 17th century. Thus the oldest coats of arms generally do not include a motto. Mottoes seldom form part of the grant of arms: Under most heraldic authorities, a motto is an optional component of the coat of arms, and can be added to or changed at will; many families have chosen not to display a motto.

Motto: Vincit qui patitur
Motto Translation: He conquers who endures.

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  1. Papworth, J.W and A.W Morant. Ordinary of British Armorials. London: T.Richards, 1874. Print.
  2. Ingram, Rev. James. Translator Anglo-Saxon Chronicle 1823. Print.
  3. Le Patourel, John. The Norman Empire. New York: Oxford University Press, 1976. Print. (ISBN 0-19-822525-3).
  4. Thirsk, Joan. The Agrarian History of England and Wales. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press: 7 Volumes. Print.
  5. Burke, Sir Bernard. Burke's Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Landed Gentry: Including American Families with British Ancestry. (2 Volumes). London: Burke Publishing, 1939. Print.
  6. Hitching, F.K and S. Hitching. References to English Surnames in 1601-1602. Walton On Thames: 1910. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0181-3).
  7. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  8. Robb H. Amanda and Andrew Chesler. Encyclopedia of American Family Names. New York: Haper Collins, 1995. Print. (ISBN 0-06-270075-8).
  9. Cook, Chris. English Historical Facts 1603-1688. London: MacMillan, 1980. Print.
  10. 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.
  11. ...

The Harrison Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Harrison 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 18 June 2014 at 23:48.

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