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

Origins Available: English, French, German

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

The history of the Gross family name begins in the German province of Bavaria. Gross is a nickname surname, a class of German names derived from eke-names, or added names, that described people by a personal characteristic or other attribute. Gross is a name for a large person. This family name is derived from the German word gross, indicating prodigious size.

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Many cultural groups lived in the German states in medieval times. Each had its own dialect and traditions, and unique variations of popular names. Low German, which is similar to contemporary Dutch, was spoken in Westphalia. German names are characterized by additions such as regional suffixes and phrases that tell something about the origin or background of its original bearer. Further contributing to the variation in German names was the fact that there were no spelling rules in medieval times: scribes recorded names according to their sound. The recorded spelling variations of Gross include Gross, Grose, Groes, Grosse, Groess, Groesse and many more.

First found in Bavaria, where this family name became a prominent contributor to the development of the district from ancient times. Always prominent in social affairs, the name became an integral part of that turbulent region as it emerged to form alliances with other families within the Feudal System and the nation. Guenther Gross, founder of the Bavarian line von Trockau, appeared as early as 1097, when he fought under Gottfried von Bouillon against the infidels; after his period of service he settled in Franconia.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Gross research. Another 188 words(13 lines of text) covering the years 1501 and 1783 are included under the topic Early Gross History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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More information is included under the topic Early Gross Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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European migration to North America began in the mid-17th century and continued unabated until the mid-20th. Many Bavarians made the long trip to escape poverty or persecution based on their religious beliefs. The chance for tenant farmers to own their own land was also a major drawing card. They settled all across the United States in Pennsylvania, Texas, New York, Illinois, and California. Many came to Canada also, settling in Ontario and the prairie provinces. Analysis of immigration records has shown some of the first Grosss to arrive in North America, and among them were:

Gross Settlers in the United States in the 17th Century


  • Sampson Gross, who arrived in Virginia in 1637

Gross Settlers in the United States in the 18th Century


  • Johan Gross, who arrived in New York in 1709
  • Johan Jorg Gross, who landed in New York in 1709
  • William Gross, his wife and two children came to America in 1709
  • Hendrick Gross, who arrived in New York in 1709
  • Conrad Gross, who arrived in America in 1712


Gross Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century


  • G A Gross, who landed in Pennsylvania in 1802
  • Fred Wilch Gross, who landed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1802
  • Frederic Gross, aged 40, arrived in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1804
  • Hannah Gross, who arrived in Pennsylvania in 1804
  • Johann Gross, who arrived in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1806


Gross Settlers in the United States in the 20th Century


  • Leo Gross, who arrived in Mississippi in 1902
  • Fred Gross, who arrived in Alabama in 1913

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  • Benedict Gross (b. 1950), American mathematician awarded the Cole Prize for Number Theory in 1987
  • Kevin Frank Gross (b. 1961), American Major League Baseball pitcher from 1983 to 1997
  • Samuel David Gross (1805-1885), American academic trauma surgeon cited as the most distinguished surgeon of his times
  • Ludwik Gross (1904-1999), Polish-American renowned and internationally recognized medical researcher
  • Michael Gross (b. 1947), American television, movie, and stage actor
  • Robert Ellsworth Gross (1897-1961), American businessman involved in the field of aviation, a major producer of P-38 Lightning fighters for World War II
  • Robert E. Gross (1905-1988), American cardiac surgeon
  • Alfred J Gross (1918-2000), American inventor who held patents on the first two-way portable radio, pagers and cordless telephone
  • David Jonathan Gross (b. 1941), American particle physicist and string theorist awarded the 2004 Nobel Prize in Physics
  • Major-General Charles Philip Gross (1889-1975), American Chief of the Transportation Corps (1942-1945)

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  • A Family History and Genealogy; The Descendants of Johannes Fluck...Philip Christian Gross...John A. Greup...Giving Primary Consideration to the Lines of Their Descendants by Laura Lydia Trumbower Price.
  • The Family History of Friedrich Gross 1853-1968 by Charles and Eugenia Gross.
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  1. Siebmacher, J.J. Siebmachers Wappenbuch. München, Battenberg: 1975. Print.
  2. Karlsruhe. Badisches Generallandesarchiv Baden Emigration lists 1866-1911. Salt Lake City: Microfilm of Card Index by the Genealogical Society of Utah. Print.
  3. Robb H. Amanda and Andrew Chesler. Encyclopedia of American Family Names. New York: Haper Collins, 1995. Print. (ISBN 0-06-270075-8).
  4. Bahlow, Hans. Deutschlands geographische Namenwelt Etymologisches Lexikon der Fluss- und Ortsnamen alteuropaischer Herkunft. Frankfurt: Suhrkamp, 1985. Print.
  5. Tarneller, Josef. Zur Namenkunde Tirolen Familiennamen. Bozen: Buchhandlung, 1923. Print.
  6. Rietstap, Johannes Baptist. Armorial Général. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co. Print.
  7. Crozier, William Armstrong Edition. Crozier's General Armory A Registry of American Families Entitled to Coat Armor. New York: Fox, Duffield, 1904. Print.
  8. Hanks, Patricia and Flavia Hodges. A Dictionary of Surnames. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988. Print. (ISBN 0-19-211592-8).
  9. Best, Hugh. Debrett's Texas Peerage. New York: Coward-McCann, 1983. Print. (ISBN 069811244X).
  10. Haverkamp, Alfred. Medieval Germany 1056-1273 2nd edition. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988. Print.
  11. ...

The Gross Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Gross 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 28 December 2013 at 12:22.

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