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

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

The history of the name Fitch goes back those Anglo-Saxon tribes that once ruled over Britain. Such a name was given to a person of iron point which may have been made in reference to a soldier or warrior. The surname Fitch originally derived from the Old English word Fiche which referred to iron point.

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Sound was what guided spelling in the essentially pre-literate Middle Ages, so one person's name was often recorded under several variations during a single lifetime. Also, before the advent of the printing press and the first dictionaries, the English language was not standardized. Therefore, spelling variations were common, even among the names of the most literate people. Known variations of the Fitch family name include Fitch, Fitchett, Fitchitt, Fittch, Fitche, Fitchet, Fitchit, Fitz, Fitts and many more.

First found in Suffolk where they held a family seat from early times.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Fitch research. Another 209 words(15 lines of text) covering the years 1300, 1300, 1359, 1398, 1612, 1704, 1638 and 1673 are included under the topic Early Fitch History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Another 81 words(6 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Fitch Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Some of the Fitch family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 33 words(2 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.

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For political, religious, and economic reasons, thousands of English families boarded ships for Ireland, the Canadas, the America colonies, and many of smaller tropical colonies in the hope of finding better lives abroad. Although the passage on the cramped, dank ships caused many to arrive in the New World diseased and starving, those families that survived the trip often went on to make valuable contributions to those new societies to which they arrived. Investigation of the origins of family names on the North American continent has revealed that early immigrants bearing the name Fitch or a variant listed above:

Fitch Settlers in the United States in the 17th Century


  • Matthew Fitch settled in Virginia in 1606
  • Enecha Fitch purchased land in Virginia in 1624
  • Thomas Fitch settled in Connecticut in 1630
  • Zachary Fitch settled in Massachusetts in 1630
  • Jeremiah Fitch, who arrived in Lynn, Massachusetts in 1634


Fitch Settlers in the United States in the 18th Century


  • Wm Fitch, who landed in Virginia in 1701
  • Tho Fitch, who landed in Virginia in 1703
  • Lewis Fitch, who landed in Boston, Massachusetts in 1763
  • Rebecca Fitch, who landed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1773

Fitch Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century


  • Anne Fitch, who arrived in New York, NY in 1817
  • Mrs. Fitch, who arrived in Mobile, Ala in 1822
  • Jabez Fitch, who landed in Texas in 1835
  • P Fitch, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1850
  • A Fitch, who landed in San Francisco, California in 1850


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  • Admiral Aubrey Wray Fitch (1883-1978), American naval aviator and eponym of USS Aubrey Fitch (FFG-34)
  • James P Fitch, American Scouting notable in the early history of the Boy Scouts of America
  • John Fitch (1743-1798), American inventor who built the first recorded steam powered ship in the United States
  • Val Logsdon Fitch (b. 1923), American physicist awarded the 1980 Nobel Prize in Physics
  • Brigadier-General Burdette Mase Fitch (1896-1977), American Adjutant to the Supreme Commander Allied Powers Japan (1945-1946)
  • Sir Joshua Girling Fitch (1824-1903), English educationist and a Chevalier of the Légion d'honneur
  • John Knowles Fitch (1880-1943), founder of the Fitch Publishing Company
  • Ernest Alan Fitch (1915-1985), British M. P. from Lancashire, former Lord Commander of the Treasury


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  • A Fitch Family History: English Ancestors of the Fitches Colonial Connecticut by John T. Fitch.
  • Henry Fitch of Maryland by Deborah K. Small.
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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: Esperance
Motto Translation: Hope.

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  1. Marcharn, Frederick George. A Constitutional History of Modern England 1485 to the Present. London: Harper and Brothers, 1960. Print.
  2. Reaney P.H and R.M. Wilson. A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X).
  3. Hanks, Patricia and Flavia Hodges. A Dictionary of Surnames. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988. Print. (ISBN 0-19-211592-8).
  4. 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.
  5. Lennard, Reginald. Rural England 1086-1135 A Study of Social and Agrarian Conditions. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1959. Print.
  6. 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.
  7. Shaw, William A. Knights of England A Complete Record from the Earliest Time to the Present Day of the Knights of all the Orders of Chivalry in England, Scotland, Ireland and Knights Bachelors 2 Volumes. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print. (ISBN 080630443X).
  8. Bolton, Charles Knowles. Bolton's American Armory. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1964. Print.
  9. Dunkling, Leslie. Dictionary of Surnames. Toronto: Collins, 1998. Print. (ISBN 0004720598).
  10. Leeson, Francis L. Dictionary of British Peerages. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1986. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-1121-5).
  11. ...

The Fitch Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Fitch 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 March 2014 at 11:48.

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