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

Origins Available: English, French

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

The origins of the Bourne name lie with England's ancient Anglo-Saxon culture. It comes from when the family lived at or near a local stream or a spring. Bourn is a small village and civil parish in South Cambridgeshire. The population of the parish was 1,764 people at the time of the 2001 census. Bourn Castle was located there and originally consisted of wooden buildings on an earthwork enclosure which was erected during the reign of William the Conqueror. This was burnt down during the reign of Henry III. In the early 16th century Bourn Hall was built on part of the site.


Before the last few hundred years, the English language had no fast system of spelling rules. For that reason, spelling variations are commonly found in early Anglo-Saxon surnames. Over the years, many variations of the name Bourne were recorded, including Bourne, Borne, Bourn and others.

First found in Lincolnshire at Bourne, a market town and civil parish in the South Kesteven district which dates back to the Domesday Book where it was listed as Brune. The place name was derived from the Old English word burna or perhaps the Old Scandinavian word brunnr. The aforementioned Bourn in South Cambridgeshire also dates back to the Domesday Book where it was listed at that time as Brune. It has a similar origin. [1] Bourne Abbey is in Bourne, Lincolnshire dates back to before Domesday Book in 1086. At that time, it was listed as "half a church" and had a priest. In other words, it was a small church but standards of those days. Bourne Abbey and the surrounding area was held by Ogier the Breton and was a major fishery holding at the time 2,500 eels. [2]


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Bourne research. Another 125 words(9 lines of text) covering the years 1590, 1679, 1611, 1690, 1648 and 1719 are included under the topic Early Bourne History in all our PDF Extended History products.


Another 89 words(6 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Bourne Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.


Some of the Bourne family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 75 words(5 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.


To escape oppression and starvation at that time, many English families left for the "open frontiers" of the New World with all its perceived opportunities. In droves people migrated to the many British colonies, those in North America in particular, paying high rates for passages in cramped, unsafe ships. Although many of the settlers did not make the long passage alive, those who did see the shores of North America perceived great opportunities before them. Many of the families that came from England went on to make essential contributions to the emerging nations of Canada and the United States. Research into various historical records revealed some of first members of the Bourne family emigrate to North America:

Bourne Settlers in the United States in the 17th Century

  • Thomas Bourné settled in Boston in 1620
  • Garret Bourne settled in Salem Massachusetts in 1630
  • Nehemiah Bourne settled in Charleston Massachusetts in 1630
  • Garrett Bourne, who arrived in Boston, Massachusetts in 1635
  • John Bourne, who arrived in Salem, Massachusetts in 1637

Bourne Settlers in the United States in the 18th Century

  • Ellis Bourne, who landed in Virginia in 1706
  • lames Bourne, who arrived in Virginia in 1706
  • Jesse Bourne, who arrived in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1742-1743
  • Peter Bourne, who landed in Virginia in 1769-1770

Bourne Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century

  • Thomas Bourne, who landed in New York in 1835
  • Elisha Bourne, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1849
  • H Bourne, who landed in San Francisco, California in 1850
  • E Bourne, who landed in San Francisco, California in 1850
  • E A Bourne, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1850


  • Whitney Bourne (1912-1988), American stage and screen actor
  • Randolph Bourne (1886-1918), American critic and essayist
  • Lloyd Bourne (b. 1958), American former professional tennis player, ranked World No. 73 in 1983
  • Stephen Richard "Steve" Bourne (b. 1944), English-born, American computer scientist, author of the Bourne shell, the foundation for the standard command line interfaces to Unix, President of the Association for Computing Machinery (2000-2002)
  • Benjamin Bourne (1755-1808), American jurist and politician who represented Rhode Island in the U.S. House of Representatives
  • George Bourne (1780-1845), American abolitionist and editor, first person that proclaimed the "immediate emancipation without compensation" of American slaves
  • Hugh Bourne (1772-1852), English founder of the sect of Primitive Methodists
  • Sir Frederick Bourne, English colonial administrator, Governor of East Bengal (1947-50)
  • Francis Alphonsus Bourne (1861-1935), English prelate of the Roman Catholic Church, Archbishop of Westminster (1903-1935)
  • James Elliot Bourne (b. 1983), English singer-songwriter and co-founder of pop bands Son of Dork and Busted



  • The Bourne Genealogy by Helen Bourne Joy Lee.
  • Old Letters, Old Biographies and Old Family Trees of Bourne, Carr, Darden and Allied Families of Virginia, Tennessee and Other States by Gertrude Morton Price Katz.

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: Haec omnia transeunt
Motto Translation: All these things pass away.


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  1. ^ Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
  2. ^ Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)

Other References

  1. Passenger Lists of Vessels Arriving at Galveston Texas 1896-1951. National Archives Washington DC. Print.
  2. Sanders, Joanne McRee Edition. English Settlers in Barbados 1637-1800. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  3. Humble, Richard. The Fall of Saxon England. New York: Barnes and Noble, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-88029-987-8).
  4. Hinde, Thomas Ed. The Domesday Book England's Heritage Then and Now. Surrey: Colour Library Books, 1995. Print. (ISBN 1-85833-440-3).
  5. Ingram, Rev. James. Translator Anglo-Saxon Chronicle 1823. Print.
  6. Foster, Joseph. Dictionary of Heraldry Feudal Coats of Arms and Pedigrees. London: Bracken Books, 1989. Print. (ISBN 1-85170-309-8).
  7. Shirley, Evelyn Philip. Noble and Gentle Men of England Or Notes Touching The Arms and Descendants of the Ancient Knightley and Gentle Houses of England Arranged in their Respective Counties 3rd Edition. Westminster: John Bowyer Nichols and Sons, 1866. Print.
  8. Burke, Sir Bernard. Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Peerage and Baronetage, The Privy Council, Knightage and Compainonage. London: Burke Publishing, 1921. Print.
  9. Skordas, Guest. Ed. The Early Settlers of Maryland an Index to Names or Immigrants Complied from Records of Land Patents 1633-1680 in the Hall of Records Annapolis, Maryland. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1968. Print.
  10. Bardsley, C.W. A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6).
  11. ...

The Bourne Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Bourne 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 May 2014 at 13:03.

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