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

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

The history of the name Pilgrim goes back 1066 when the Norman Conquest of England occurred. Soon after this event, the name would have been given to a person who had made a pilgrimage to the Holy Land or some devotional area in Europe such as the tomb of St. Thomas a Beckett at Canterbury.


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. Pilgrim has been recorded under many different variations, including Pilgrim, Pilgrime, Pilgram, Pegram, Pegrem, Pelerin, Peregrine and many more.

First found in Norfolk, where the family held lands after the Norman Conquest. Robert, John, and Thomas Pelerin were all registered in Normandy between 1180 and 1195.


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Pilgrim research. Another 87 words(6 lines of text) covering the years 1189, 1200 and 1273 are included under the topic Early Pilgrim History in all our PDF Extended History products.


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


Some of the Pilgrim family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 35 words(2 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.


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. Pilgrims were some of the first of the immigrants to arrive in North America:

Pilgrim Settlers in the United States in the 17th Century

  • William Pilgrim, who sailed to Virginia in 1665
  • William Pilgrim, who landed in Virginia in 1665-1666
  • Thomas Pilgrim sailed to Barbados in 1680

Pilgrim Settlers in the United States in the 18th Century

  • Richard Pilgrim sailed to Maryland in 1742

Pilgrim Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century

  • Nathaniel Pilgrim, aged 35, landed in Maryland in 1813
  • John H Pilgrim, aged 33, landed in Missouri in 1848

Pilgrim Settlers in the United States in the 20th Century

  • Joseph Alexander Pilgrim, who arrived in Alabama in 1925


  • Peace Pilgrim, born Mildred Lisette Norman, was an American pacifist, vegetarian, and peace activist
  • Janet Pilgrim (b. 1934), American model and actress
  • Paul Henry Pilgrim (1883-1958), American athlete who won three gold medals at the 1904 and 1906 Summer Olympics
  • Cecil Stanley Pilgrim, British High Commissioner for Guyana in London (1986), and Ambassador to France, Netherlands and Yugoslavia


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  1. Bolton, Charles Knowles. Bolton's American Armory. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1964. Print.
  2. 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.
  3. Lennard, Reginald. Rural England 1086-1135 A Study of Social and Agrarian Conditions. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1959. Print.
  4. Bradford, William. History of Plymouth Plantation 1620-1647 Edited by Samuel Eliot Morrison 2 Volumes. New York: Russell and Russell, 1968. Print.
  5. Hanks, Patricia and Flavia Hodges. A Dictionary of Surnames. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988. Print. (ISBN 0-19-211592-8).
  6. Bullock, L.G. Historical Map of England and Wales. Edinburgh: Bartholomew and Son, 1971. Print.
  7. Egle, William Henry. Pennsylvania Genealogies Scotch-Irish and German. Harrisburg: L.S. Hart, 1886. Print.
  8. Bede, The Venerable. Historia Ecclesiatica Gentis Anglorum (The Ecclesiastical History Of the English People). Available through Internet Medieval Sourcebook the Fordham University Centre for Medieval Studies. Print.
  9. Burke, Sir Bernard. General Armory Of England, Scotland, Ireland and Wales. Ramsbury: Heraldry Today. Print.
  10. Le Patourel, John. The Norman Empire. New York: Oxford University Press, 1976. Print. (ISBN 0-19-822525-3).
  11. ...

The Pilgrim Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Pilgrim 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 29 July 2014 at 01:08.

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