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

Origins Available: Italian, Portuguese, Spanish

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

Tuscany, one of the oldest and most beautiful island regions of Italy, is the esteemed birthplace of numerous prominent families, including the family that bears the surname Garcia. Although people were originally known only by a single name, it became necessary for people to adapt a second name to identify themselves as populations grew and travel became more frequent. The process of adopting fixed hereditary surnames was not complete until the modern era; the use of hereditary family names in Italy began in the 10th and 11th centuries. Italian hereditary surnames were developed according to fairly general principles and they are characterized by a profusion of derivatives coined from given names. Although the most common type of family name found in Tuscany is the patronymic surname, which is derived from the father's givenname, names derived from occupations are also found. Occupational surnames, which are less common that other types of surnames in Italy, date back to the feudal era. However, under the Feudal System, occupational names did not become hereditary until the offices themselves became hereditary. It was only after an occupation was inherited by several generations in lineal descent, that occupational names came to be applied to entire families, and so became a hereditary surname. The surname Garcia is a name for a person who used a wire-toothed brush, to prepare and untangle hemp fibers. This surname is derived from the word garzolo, which means carded hemp, from the vulgar Latin verb cardjare. The surname may also be of nickname origin, derived from the Italian word garza which means heron, and was given to a tall, slender individual.

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There are many variations of most of those Italian names that originated in the medieval era. Some of these come from regional differences, like the tradition of ending northern names in "o" and southern names in "i". Others come from inaccuracies in the recording process, which were extremely common in the eras before dictionaries standardized spelling. Some of the spelling variations of Garcia are Garzia, Garzya, Garsia, Garcia, Garcea, Garzaria, Garzadori, Garzetta and many more.

First found in Lucca, a city and comune in Tuscany, capital of the province of Lucca where Bascilican type churches abound and where the main branch of the family originates. Records can be found with the Garzoni family, who moved from Lucca to Bologna in 1228.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Garcia research. More information is included under the topic Early Garcia History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Another 273 words(20 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Garcia Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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The records on immigrants and ships' passengers show a number of people bearing the name Garcia:

  • Martín García Oñez was a soldier, conquistador, Corregidor of Peru and governor of Chile at the end of the sixteenth century
  • Alejo García, who arrived in the New World in 1528 and explored Argentina, Paraguay and Brazil
  • Lope García de Castro was governor of Peru in the 1560s
  • Ana García, to Colombia in 1561
  • Catalina García, who emigrated to Venezuela in 1561


Garcia Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century


  • Alonso Garcia, who arrived in America in 1811
  • Elvira Garcia, who landed in Espanola in 1811
  • Francisco Garcia, who arrived in America in 1811
  • Gonzalo Garcia, who arrived in America in 1811
  • Heman Garcia, who landed in America in 1811


Garcia Settlers in the United States in the 20th Century


  • Bruno Garcia, who arrived in Texas in 1910

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  • Jerome John "Jerry" Garcia (1942-1995), American guitarist, singer, songwriter, counterculture icon, and co-founder of the Grateful Dead
  • Aaron Garcia (b. 1970), Mexican American football player
  • Aimee Garcia (b. 1978), Mexican American actress
  • Carlos García (b. 1967), Venezuelan-American baseball player
  • Eric Garcia (b. 1972), Mexican American author
  • Staff Sergeant Marcario Garcia (1920-1972), first Mexican immigrant to receive the Medal of Honor
  • Hector P. Garcia (1914-1996), Mexican American physician, surgeon, WWII veteran, civil rights advocate, founder of the American G.I Forum and recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom
  • Héctor Anibal Maestri Garcia (1935-2014), Major League Baseball pitcher
  • Pascual Cebollada García (b. 1916), Spanish journalist
  • Carlos Polestico Garcia (1896-1971), Philippine politician who was president of Philippines from 1957-1961

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  1. Bentley, Elizabeth P. Passenger Arrivals at the Port of New York 1820-1829. Baltimore, Maryland: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1999. Print.
  2. Battilana, Natale, Ed. Genealogie Dello Famiglie Nobili di Genova. Genova: Fratelli Pagano, 1825. Print.
  3. Annuaire Général Héraldique Universel. Paris: Institut Héraldique, 1901. Print.
  4. Bongioanni, Angelo. Nomi e Cognomi. Saggio di Ricerche Etimologiche e Storiche. Torino: A. Forni, 1979. Print.
  5. Dizionario Biografico degli Italiani. Rome Istituto della Enciclopedia Italiana 56 volumesr. Print.
  6. Filby, P. William and Mary K Meyer. Passenger and Immigration Lists Index in Four Volumes. Detroit: Gale Research, 1985. Print. (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8).
  7. Colletta, John P. Finding Italian Roots The Complete Guide for Americans. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 2003. Print.
  8. Rietstap, Johannes Baptist. Armorial Général. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co. Print.
  9. Crozier, William Armstrong Edition. Crozier's General Armory A Registry of American Families Entitled to Coat Armor. New York: Fox, Duffield, 1904. Print.
  10. Di Crollalanza, Goffredo. Enciclopedia araldico cavalleresca Prontuario nobiliare. Pisa: Presso La Direzione Del Giorale Araldica , 1878. Print.
  11. ...

The Garcia Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Garcia 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 24 July 2014 at 14:13.

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