An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright © 2000 - 2014
Origins Available: English, Scottish
Where did the English Forrest family come from? What is the English Forrest family crest and coat of arms? When did the Forrest family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the Forrest family history?The Forrest surname was no doubt taken on by someone who either lived in or near a forest, or perhaps worked in the forest. The Middle English word "forest" referred specifically to an area of woodland reserved by law as hunting grounds for the king or his nobles. No doubt, as a surname, Forrest would have appeared independently in various parts of Britain.
The name Forrest, appeared in many references, and from time to time, the surname was spelt Forrester, Forester, Forrest, Forster, Foster, Forrestor and many more.
First found in Northumberland, but early records include John Forester, listed in the Pipe Rolls of Surrey of 1183, and Richard le Forester listed in the Feet of Fines of Essex in 1240. The Hundred Rolls of 1273 include: Petrus Forestarius, Jordan le Forester; and Nicholas le Forester.  There was also a Shropshire family of this name, who held custody of part of the Wrekin forest. An early record of this family lists a Hugh Forester as a witness 1187. As a trade name, the family were traditional "officers made by letters patent under the great seal, and sworn to preserve vert and venison in the forest; and to attend upon the wild beasts within his bailiwick; to attach offenders there either in Vert or Venison, and to preserve the same at the courts of the Forest." 
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Forrest research. Another 209 words(15 lines of text) covering the years 1379, 1471, 1538, 1623, 1652, 1655, 1718, 1679, 1690, 1758, 1767, 1828 and 1698 are included under the topic Early Forrest History in all our PDF Extended History products.
Another 177 words(13 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Forrest Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.
Some of the Forrest 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.
The New World beckoned as many of the settlers in Ireland, known as the Scotch/Irish, became disenchanted. They sailed aboard the armada of sailing ships known as the "White Sails" which plied the stormy Atlantic. Some called them, less romantically, the "coffin ships." Amongst the early settlers who could be considered kinsmen of the Forrest family, or who bore a variation of the surname Forrest were
Forrest Settlers in the United States in the 17th Century
Forrest Settlers in the United States in the 18th Century
Forrest Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century
The Forrest Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Forrest 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 6 July 2014 at 21:27.
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