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

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

The history of the name Heran goes back 1066 when the Norman Conquest of England occurred. Soon after this event, the name would have been given to a person who was long legged or of tall stature. The name Heran is derived from the Old English word heiroun, which meant heron. As in this instance, nickname surnames often described strong traits or features of animals. In the pre-Christian era, many pagan gods and demigods were believed to be a mixture of animals and humans, such as the Greek god Pan who was the god of flocks and herds and was represented as a man with the legs, horns and ears of a goat. In the Middle Ages, anthropomorphic ideas, which attributed human qualities and form to gods or animals, were held about the characters of other living creatures. They were based on the creature's habits. Moreover, these associations were reflected in folk tales, mythology, and legends which portrayed animals behaving as humans

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The English language only became standardized in the last few centuries. For that reason, spelling variations are common among many Anglo-Norman names. The shape of the English language was frequently changed with the introduction of elements of Norman French, Latin, and other European languages; even the spelling of literate people's names were subsequently modified. Heran has been recorded under many different variations, including Herron, Heron and others.

First found in Northumberland where they held a family seat from very early times and were granted lands by Duke William of Normandy, their liege Lord, for their distinguished assistance at the Battle of Hastings in 1066 A.D.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Heran research. Another 233 words(17 lines of text) covering the years 1795 and 1865 are included under the topic Early Heran History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Another 26 words(2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Heran Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Some of the Heran family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 130 words(9 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.

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To escape the uncertainty of the political and religious uncertainty found in England, many English families boarded ships at great expense to sail for the colonies held by Britain. The passages were expensive, though, and the boats were unsafe, overcrowded, and ridden with disease. Those who were hardy and lucky enough to make the passage intact were rewarded with land, opportunity, and social environment less prone to religious and political persecution. Many of these families went on to be important contributors to the young nations of Canada and the United States where they settled. Herans were some of the first of the immigrants to arrive in North America:

Heran Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century


  • Martha Heran, who arrived in New York, NY in 1811

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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: Nil desperandum
Motto Translation: Never despairing.

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  1. Bardsley, C.W. A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6).
  2. Samuelsen, W. David. New York City Passenger List Manifests Index 1820 - 1824. North Salt Lake, Utah: Accelerated Indexing Systems International, 1986. Print.
  3. Chadwick, Nora Kershaw and J.X.W.P Corcoran. The Celts. London: Penguin, 1790. Print. (ISBN 0140212116).
  4. Hitching, F.K and S. Hitching. References to English Surnames in 1601-1602. Walton On Thames: 1910. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0181-3).
  5. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  6. Humble, Richard. The Fall of Saxon England. New York: Barnes and Noble, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-88029-987-8).
  7. Browning, Charles H. Americans of Royal Descent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  8. Mills, A.D. Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4).
  9. MacAulay, Thomas Babington. History of England from the Accession of James the Second 4 volumes. New York: Harper and Brothers, 1879. Print.
  10. Bradford, William. History of Plymouth Plantation 1620-1647 Edited by Samuel Eliot Morrison 2 Volumes. New York: Russell and Russell, 1968. Print.
  11. ...

The Heran Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Heran 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 May 2013 at 18:07.

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