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

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

The name Thorpe is part of the ancient legacy of the Anglo-Saxon tribes of Britain. It is a product of when the family lived in the area referred to as the thorp which is the Old English word for village, farmstead or hamlet. The surname Thorpe is a habitation name that was originally derived from pre-existing names for towns, villages, parishes, or farmsteads. The surname originated as a means of identifying individuals from a particular area. In the Middle Ages people often assumed the name of the place that they originally lived as their surname during the course of travel. In this case the place-name Thorpe was found in various locations in England.

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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. Thorpe has been spelled many different ways, including Thorp, Thorpe, Thropp, Thrupp and others.

First found in Yorkshire where they held a family seat before the Norman Conquest in 1066, as Lords of the manor of Thorpe.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Thorpe research. Another 256 words(18 lines of text) covering the years 1407, 1565, 1569, and 1655 are included under the topic Early Thorpe History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Another 46 words(3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Thorpe Notables 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 Thorpes to arrive in North America:

Thorpe Settlers in the United States in the 17th Century


  • George Thorpe, who landed in Virginia in 1622
  • Christian Thorpe settled in Virginia in 1636
  • Christ Thorpe, who landed in Virginia in 1637
  • James Thorpe settled in Barbados in 1639 with his servants
  • Daniell Thorpe, who arrived in Virginia in 1643


Thorpe Settlers in the United States in the 18th Century


  • Catherine Thorpe, who arrived in Virginia in 1714

Thorpe Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century


  • Levi Thorpe, who arrived in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1858
  • Joseph Thorpe, aged 6, landed in New York in 1862
  • Jane Thorpe, aged 4, landed in New York in 1862
  • Elizth Thorpe, aged 45, landed in New York in 1862
  • Emma Thorpe, who arrived in New York in 1862


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  • James Francis Thorpe (1888-1953), American all round athlete
  • Chris Thorpe (b. 1970), American luge Olympic athlete
  • Sir Edward Thorpe (1845-1925), English chemist
  • Benjamin Thorpe (1782-1870), English philologist
  • Sir Thomas Edward Thorpe (1845-1925), English chemist
  • John Jeremy Thorpe (b. 1929), English Liberal politician
  • Aidey Thorpe (b. 1963), English footballer
  • David Thorpe (b. 1972), English artist
  • Graham Paul Thorpe MBE (b. 1969), English cricketer
  • Adam Thorpe (b. 1956), British author

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  • Genealogy of Some Early Families in Grant and Pleasant Districts, Preston County, West Virginia, also the Thorpe Family of Fayette County, Pennsylvania by Edward Thorp King.
  • Facts & Anecdotes of Turnersville, Texas by Laura A. Tharp.
  • Sifting Through the Ashes for the Althorp, Allentharpe, Tharp, Tharpe Family and Connections by Eleanor Davis McSwain.
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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: Super antiquas vias
Motto Translation: Upon the ancient tracks.

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  1. Chadwick, Nora Kershaw and J.X.W.P Corcoran. The Celts. London: Penguin, 1790. Print. (ISBN 0140212116).
  2. Marcharn, Frederick George. A Constitutional History of Modern England 1485 to the Present. London: Harper and Brothers, 1960. Print.
  3. Burke, Sir Bernard. Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Peerage and Baronetage, The Privy Council, Knightage and Compainonage. London: Burke Publishing, 1921. Print.
  4. Bowman, George Ernest. The Mayflower Reader A Selection of Articales from The Mayflower Descendent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  5. Papworth, J.W and A.W Morant. Ordinary of British Armorials. London: T.Richards, 1874. Print.
  6. Humble, Richard. The Fall of Saxon England. New York: Barnes and Noble, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-88029-987-8).
  7. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  8. Ingram, Rev. James. Translator Anglo-Saxon Chronicle 1823. Print.
  9. 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.
  10. Cook, Chris. English Historical Facts 1603-1688. London: MacMillan, 1980. Print.
  11. ...

The Thorpe Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Thorpe 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 30 September 2014 at 20:14.

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