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

Origins Available: English, German

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

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Spelling variations of this family name include: Tour, Tor, Torr, Torre, Thor, Thore, Thour and others.

First found in Devon where they held a family seat as Lords of the Manor. The Norman influence of English history dominated after the Battle of Hastings in 1066. The language of the courts was French for the next three centuries and the Norman ambience prevailed. The family name was first referenced in the 12th century when they held estates in that shire. They were of the great Norman family of Martin de Tours from Tour near Bayeux. The Sire de Tour conquered Cameys in Wales and became the Lord Marcher of South Wales. His sons either took the name FitzMartin or Tour, sometimes Tower. He built the Benedictine Abbey of St.Dogmael's and, of course, his great Castle at Newport, where the ruins still exist. The family was granted vast estates in Devon, Somerset, and Dorset.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Torr research. Another 227 words(16 lines of text) covering the years 1182, 1242, 1455, and 1487 are included under the topic Early Torr History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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

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Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Torr Settlers in the United States in the 18th Century


  • Hans Georg Torr, who arrived in Pennsylvania in 1747

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  1. Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds. Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8).
  2. Library of Congress. American and English Genealogies in the Library of Congress. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1967. Print.
  3. 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.
  4. Magnusson, Magnus. Chambers Biographical Dictionary 5th edition. Edinburgh: W & R Chambers, 1990. Print.
  5. Browning, Charles H. Americans of Royal Descent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  6. Mills, A.D. Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4).
  7. Matthews, John. Matthews' American Armoury and Blue Book. London: John Matthews, 1911. Print.
  8. Bardsley, C.W. A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6).
  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. MacAulay, Thomas Babington. History of England from the Accession of James the Second 4 volumes. New York: Harper and Brothers, 1879. Print.
  11. ...

The Torr Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Torr 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 21 July 2012 at 10:10.

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