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

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

The name Richardson was brought to England in the great wave of migration following the Norman Conquest of 1066. It comes from the Old German name "Ricard," meaning "powerful" and "brave." [1]


Spelling variations of this family name include: Richardson, Richerson, Richarson and others.

First found in Cheshire in 1067 where they were descended from Hugh d'Avranche, Earl Lupus of Chester. His descendant, William Belwood, Lord of Malpas in Cheshire, had two sons, David and Richard. Richard's grandson John was the first to bear the name Richardson. Years later the Yorkshire Poll Tax records revealed William Richardson in 1381 and further north in Scotland, Thome filius Ricardi held a charter of the barony of Symundestone in Lanark c. 1315-21. A few years later, Laurence filius Ricardi was a tenant of the Earl of Douglas in Louchurde in 1376. Murdac Richardesson, a Scottish merchant complained the English had sunk his vessel during a truce in 1359. [2]


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Richardson research. Another 197 words(14 lines of text) covering the years 1576, 1651, 1628, 1569, 1635, 1627, 1674, 1660, 1674, 1689, 1761, 1664, 1714, 1714, 1715, 1690, 1755, 1737 and 1755 are included under the topic Early Richardson History in all our PDF Extended History products.


Another 131 words(9 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Richardson Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.


Some of the Richardson family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 163 words(12 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.


Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Richardson Settlers in the United States in the 17th Century

  • William Richardson, who landed in Virginia in 1623
  • William Richardson, who arrived in Virginia in 1624-1625
  • Thomas Richardson, who landed in Charlestown, Massachusetts in 1630
  • Ezekiel Richardson, who arrived in Charlestown, Massachusetts in 1630
  • Henrie Richardson, aged 21, arrived in Virginia in 1635

Richardson Settlers in the United States in the 18th Century

  • Sara Richardson, who arrived in Virginia in 1703
  • Roger Richardson, who arrived in Virginia in 1714
  • Rachel Richardson, who arrived in New England in 1716
  • Harbart Richardson, who landed in Virginia in 1717
  • Ann Richardson, who landed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1723-1724

Richardson Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century

  • Jonathan Richardson, who landed in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1803
  • Nathaniel Richardson, who arrived in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1803
  • Samuel Richardson, who arrived in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1803
  • Hugh Richardson, who arrived in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1808
  • Felix A Richardson, who landed in Texas in 1835


  • Henry Hobson Richardson (1838-1886), prominent American architect of the 19th century
  • Robert Coleman Richardson (1937-2013), American experimental physicist who shared the 1996 Nobel Prize for Physics
  • Elliot Lee Richardson (1920-1999), American lawyer, politician and recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom
  • Jiles Perry "J. P." Richardson Jr. (1930-1959), known as The Big Bopper, an American disc jockey, singer, and songwriter best known for his recording of "Chantilly Lace," killed in a plane crash with Buddy Holly and Ritchie Vallens, on according to Don McLean's song, the Day that Music Died
  • Jay P. Richardson (1959-2013), American musician, son of The Big Bopper
  • Henry Richardson (1889-1963), American who won two bronze Olympic medals for archery at the 1904 and 1908 games
  • Alan Richardson (1905-1975), English Anglican theologian
  • Dorothy Miller Richardson (1873-1957), English novelist, her thirteen novel sequence Pilgrimage is one of the great 20th century works of modernist and feminist literature in English
  • Sir Owen Willans Richardson FRS (1879-1959), English physicist who was awarded the Nobel prize for physics in 1928
  • Sir Ralph David Richardson (1902-1983), Oscar nominated English actor, recipient of the Best Actor Award at the Cannes Film Festival in 1963



  • Minnie Mallory Boyett, Hagan, Pullen. Radford, Goggans, Peterson, and Richardson Kin by Woodrow W. Boyett.

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: Virtute acquiritur honos
Motto Translation: Honour is aquired by virtue.


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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. ^ Black, George F., The Surnames of Scotland Their Origin, Meaning and History. New York: New York Public Library, 1946. Print. (ISBN 0-87104-172-3)

Other References

  1. Marcharn, Frederick George. A Constitutional History of Modern England 1485 to the Present. London: Harper and Brothers, 1960. Print.
  2. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  3. Weis, Frederick Lewis, Walter Lee Sheppard and David Faris. Ancestral Roots of Sixty Colonists Who Came to New England Between 1623 and 1650 7th Edition. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0806313676).
  4. Foster, Joseph. Dictionary of Heraldry Feudal Coats of Arms and Pedigrees. London: Bracken Books, 1989. Print. (ISBN 1-85170-309-8).
  5. Mills, A.D. Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4).
  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. Sanders, Joanne McRee Edition. English Settlers in Barbados 1637-1800. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  8. Burke, John Bernard Ed. The Roll of Battle Abbey. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  9. Matthews, John. Matthews' American Armoury and Blue Book. London: John Matthews, 1911. Print.
  10. Cook, Chris. English Historical Facts 1603-1688. London: MacMillan, 1980. Print.
  11. ...

The Richardson Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Richardson 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 20 October 2014 at 14:38.

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