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

Origins Available: English, Scottish

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

The Reid surname is derived from the Old English word "read," meaning "red." It is most likely that the name was used as nickname for someone with red hair, before becoming their surname. In other instances, the Reid surname no doubt came from some of the places so named in Britain, such as Read, Lancashire, Rede, Suffolk, and Reed in Hertfordshire.


Although the name, Reid, appeared in many references, from time to time, the surname was shown with the spellings Read, Reid, Reed, Reede, Redd, Reade and others.

First found in Northumberland where they held a family seat from early times and their first records appeared on the census rolls taken by the ancient Kings of Britain to determine the rate of taxation of their subjects.


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Reid research. Another 231 words(16 lines of text) covering the years 1758, 1600, 1415, 1541, 1551, 1502, 1609, 1692, 1692 and 1721 are included under the topic Early Reid History in all our PDF Extended History products.


Another 251 words(18 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Reid Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.


Some of the Reid family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 139 words(10 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.


Gradually becoming disenchanted with life in Ireland many of these uprooted families sailed aboard the armada of sailing ships known as the "White Sails" which plied the stormy Atlantic. These overcrowded ships often arrived with only 60 to 70% of their original passenger list, many dying of cholera, typhoid, dysentery or small pox. In North America, some of the first immigrants who could be considered kinsmen of the Reid family name Reid, or who bore a variation of the surname were

Reid Settlers in the United States in the 17th Century

  • Gabriell Reid, aged 18, arrived in America in 1635
  • Elizabeth Reid, who came to Maryland in 1674
  • Elizabeth Reid, who landed in Maryland in 1674
  • Abraham Reid, who arrived in Maryland in 1678
  • George Reid, who settled in East New Jersey in 1684

Reid Settlers in the United States in the 18th Century

  • Christian James Reid, who arrived in Georgia in 1738
  • John Reid, his wife and son, who came to New York in 1739
  • Duncan Reid, who arrived in New York in 1739
  • Henry Reid, who landed in Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania in 1751
  • Charles Reid, who was on record in Pensacola, FL in 1768

Reid Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century

  • Daniel Reid, who landed in America in 1811
  • Isaiah Reid, aged 52, landed in South Carolina in 1812
  • George Reid, aged 30, arrived in Georgia in 1812
  • Adam Reid, who landed in Baltimore, Maryland in 1816
  • Forest Reid, who arrived in New York, NY in 1817


  • Andy Reid (b. 1958), American NFL football coach, Philadelphia Eagles head coach (1999-)
  • Antonio Reid (b. 1956), American songwriter, producer, and record company executive
  • David Reid (b. 1973), American boxer
  • Beryl Reid (b. 1920), English comedienne
  • Kate Reid (1931-1993), Canadian actress
  • Alan Reid (b. 1954), Scottish Liberal Democrat politician
  • Bruce Reid (b. 1963), Australian cricketer
  • Prime Minister Sir George Houstoun Reid (1845-1918), Australian politician and statesman, Prime Minister for ten months in 1904/1905
  • Alastair Reid (b. 1926), Scottish poet
  • James Scott Cumberland Reid (1890-1975), Scottish judge



  • Dunkin-Reid and Garner-McGraw-Mobley Families of South Carolina, Georgia, and Alabama by Dean Smith Cress.
  • The Nathan Reids Of Virginia in the March of Freedom by Elizabeth Reid Austin.
  • Reid Family, 1776-1974 by Maude Reid Tomlinson.

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: Pax copia
Motto Translation: Peace, plenty.


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  1. Fairbairn. Fairbain's book of Crests of the Families of Great Britain and Ireland, 4th Edition 2 volumes in one. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1968. Print.
  2. Zieber, Eugene. Heraldry in America. Philadelphia: Genealogical Publishing Co. Print.
  3. Bullock, L.G. Historical Map of England and Wales. Edinburgh: Bartholomew and Son, 1971. Print.
  4. Holt, J.C. Ed. Domesday Studies. Woodbridge: Boydell, 1987. Print. (ISBN 0-85115-477-8).
  5. Foster, Joseph. Dictionary of Heraldry Feudal Coats of Arms and Pedigrees. London: Bracken Books, 1989. Print. (ISBN 1-85170-309-8).
  6. Browning, Charles H. Americans of Royal Descent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  7. Crispin, M. Jackson and Leonce Mary. Falaise Roll Recording Prominent Companions of William Duke of Normandy at the Conquest of England. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  8. Burke, John Bernard Ed. The Roll of Battle Abbey. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  9. The Norman People and Their Existing Descendants in the British Dominions and the United States Of America. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0636-X).
  10. Reaney P.H and R.M. Wilson. A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X).
  11. ...

The Reid Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Reid 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 18 August 2014 at 16:05.

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