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

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

The origins of the name Avery are with the Anglo-Saxon tribes of Britain. The name is derived from the given name Averary. For example, the first recorded instance of the name is Rogerus filius Averary. His name means Rogerus son of Averary. Over time, the name changed until it achieved its modern form.


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. Avery has been spelled many different ways, including Avery, Averie, Avary, Every, MacAvera and others.

First found in the county of Northumberland where they held a family seat from very ancient times. Rogerus filius Averary resided in the year 1166, and held manors and estates.


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Avery research. Another 109 words(8 lines of text) covering the years 1275, 1664, 1654, 1643, 1679, 1679, 1620, 1700, 1653, 1696 and 1690 are included under the topic Early Avery History in all our PDF Extended History products.


Another 225 words(16 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Avery Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.


Some of the Avery family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 41 words(3 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.


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 Averys to arrive in North America:

Avery Settlers in the United States in the 17th Century

  • Christopher Avery (born England, died 12 March 1670), who came to America in 1630 aboard the Arbella as part of the Winthrop Fleet
  • Jacob and George Avery who settled in Virginia in 1635
  • Christopher Avery settled in Gloucester Massachusetts in 1640, moved to Boston, thence to New London, Conn

Avery Settlers in the United States in the 18th Century

  • Waightstill Avery (1741-1821), lawyer, Revolutionary War hero, first attorney general of North Carolina, and eponym of Avery County, North Carolina


  • Oswald Theodore Avery (1877-1955), American (Canadian-born) bacteriologist, who helped discover the importance of DNA
  • John Avery (1824-1914), American physician and politician from Michigan
  • Margaret Avery (b. 1944), American singer and actress
  • Shondrella Avery (b. 1971), American actress
  • Milton Avery (1885-1965), American painter whose works specialize in American Modernism
  • Tex Avery (1908-1980), American animator and director; creator of Bugs Bunny and Daffy Duck
  • James Avery (1825-1898), Union Navy seaman and recipient of the Medal of Honor during the American Civil War
  • Charles Avery (1873-1926), American actor, director, and screenwriter
  • Brigadier-General Ray Longfellow Avery (1884-1965), American Commanding Officer, Edgewood Arsenal, Maryland (1939-1946)
  • Tom Avery (b. 1975), English explorer, mountaineer, author and motivational speaker



  • A Family History, Gray-Avery and Related Families by Lewis and Ruby Gray.
  • The Groton Averys, Christopher and James by Elroy M. Avery.

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  1. MacAulay, Thomas Babington. History of England from the Accession of James the Second 4 volumes. New York: Harper and Brothers, 1879. Print.
  2. Virkus, Frederick A. Ed. Immigrant Ancestors A List of 2,500 Immigrants to America Before 1750. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1964. Print.
  3. Burke, Sir Bernard. General Armory Of England, Scotland, Ireland and Wales. Ramsbury: Heraldry Today. Print.
  4. 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.
  5. Hanks, Hodges, Mills and Room. The Oxford Names Companion. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2002. Print. (ISBN 0-19-860561-7).
  6. Reaney P.H and R.M. Wilson. A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X).
  7. Chadwick, Nora Kershaw and J.X.W.P Corcoran. The Celts. London: Penguin, 1790. Print. (ISBN 0140212116).
  8. Elster, Robert J. International Who's Who. London: Europa/Routledge. Print.
  9. Markale, J. Celtic Civilization. London: Gordon & Cremonesi, 1976. Print.
  10. Humble, Richard. The Fall of Saxon England. New York: Barnes and Noble, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-88029-987-8).
  11. ...

The Avery Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Avery 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 16 October 2014 at 11:30.

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