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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright 2000 - 2016


The root of the ancient Dalriadan-Scottish name Greer is the given name Gregor. The personal name Gregor, which is the Scottish form of Gregory, is derived from the Latin name "Gregorius" and from the Late Greek name "Gregorios," which mean alert, watchful, or vigilant.

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The surname Greer was first found in Dumfriesshire (Gaelic: Siorrachd Dhn Phris), a Southern area, bordering on England that today forms part of the Dumfries and Galloway Council Area, where they held a family seat from very ancient times.

Historical recordings of the name Greer include many spelling variations. They include They are the result of repeated translations of the name from Gaelic to English and inconsistencies in spelling rules. Greer, Grier, Grear, Grerar, Greir, Greerr, Grearr and many more.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Greer research. Another 245 words (18 lines of text) covering the years 1542 and 1598 are included under the topic Early Greer History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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

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Some of the Greer family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 164 words (12 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Descendents of Dalriadan-Scottish families still populate many communities across North America. They are particularly common in Canada, since many went north as United Empire Loyalists at the time of the American War of Independence. Much later, in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, the highland games and Clan societies that now dot North America sprang up, allowing many Scots to recover their lost national heritage. Some of the first immigrants to cross the Atlantic and come to North America bore the name Greer, or a variant listed above:

Greer Settlers in United States in the 17th Century


  • Jane Greer, who arrived in Pennsylvania in 1682

Greer Settlers in United States in the 18th Century


  • Andrew Greer and his family landed in Charles Town, South Carolina in 1763
  • Jacob Greer, who landed in Pennsylvania in 1765
  • Gerrard Greer, who arrived in America in 1795

Greer Settlers in United States in the 19th Century


  • Hannah Greer, aged 12, arrived in New York, NY in 1804
  • Mary Greer, aged 14, landed in New York, NY in 1804
  • Sarah Greer, aged 20, landed in New York, NY in 1804
  • Nathan Greer, who arrived in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1808
  • Robert Greer, who landed in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1819


Greer Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century


  • Betty Greer, aged 18, arrived in St. John aboard the ship "Protector" in 1834

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  • Judy Greer (b. 1975), born Judith Laura Evans, American Annie Award nominated actress, known for playing Kitty Sanchez on the Fox/Netflix series Arrested Development
  • Frank Greer (1878-1943), American Olympic gold medalist for rowing at the 1904 Summer Games
  • Jane Greer (1924-2001), American film and television actress, best known for her role as Kathie Moffat in the 1947 Out of the Past
  • James Greer, American novelist, screenwriter, musician, and critic, known for his work on The Spy Next Door (2010), Max Keeble's Big Move (2001) and Just My Luck (2006)
  • Jabari Amin Greer (b. 1982), American NFL football cornerback for the New Orleans Saints
  • David Hummell Greer (1844-1919), American Protestant Episcopal bishop from Wheeling, Virginia
  • George W. Greer (b. 1942), retired United States judge, Circuit Court Judge for Florida (1992-2010)
  • Robert William "Dabbs" Greer (1917-2007), American actor who appeared in 308 titles, best known for his role as the Reverend Robert Alden in NBC's Little House on the Prairie and his role in the Green Mile (1999)
  • Charlie Greer (1923-1996), American radio personality in Akron, Ohio
  • Breaux Greer (b. 1976), American gold medalist javelin thrower at the 2004 World Athletics Final

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  • Greer Family by William Greer Peck.
  • Greer-McNeill Family History by Etta S. Greer.
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  2. Filby, P. William and Mary K Meyer. Passenger and Immigration Lists Index in Four Volumes. Detroit: Gale Research, 1985. Print. (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8).
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  6. Barrow, G.W.S Ed. The Charters of David I The Written Acts of David I King of Scots, 1124-53 and of His Son Henry, Earl of Northumerland, 1139-52. Woodbridge: The Boydell Press, 1999. Print.
  7. Bradford, William. History of Plymouth Plantation 1620-1647 Edited by Samuel Eliot Morrison 2 Volumes. New York: Russell and Russell, 1968. Print.
  8. Skordas, Guest. Ed. The Early Settlers of Maryland an Index to Names or Immigrants Complied from Records of Land Patents 1633-1680 in the Hall of Records Annapolis, Maryland. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1968. Print.
  9. Paul, Sir James Balfour. An Ordinary of Arms Contained in the Public Register of All Arms and Bearings in Scotland Second Edition. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1903. Print.
  10. Dorward, David. Scottish Surnames. Glasgow: Harper Collins, 1995. Print.
  11. ...


This page was last modified on 11 May 2016 at 12:37.

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