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

Origins Available: English, German, Italian, Spanish


The German name Palmer arose from some distinct sources. In some instances, it evolved from the medieval personal name Palmatius, borne by a saint who died in 286. The name also derives from the Middle High German word "palme," or "balme," denoting a pussy willow, the tree that was traditionally used to provide the branches for Palm Sunday processions. In this instance, the name was likely originally used by someone who lived among such trees.

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The surname Palmer was first found in Bavaria, where the name Palm was anciently associated with the tribal conflicts of the area. They declared allegiances to many nobles and princes of early history, lending their influence in struggles for power and status within the region. They branched into many houses, and their contributions were sought by many leaders in their search for power.

Spelling variations of this family name include: Palm, Balm, Palmarol, Palme, Palmenbach, Palmenberg, Palmer, Palmfelt, Palmier, Palmstein, Palmstrauch, Palmures, Palmq Uist, van der Palm and many more.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Palmer research. Another 208 words (15 lines of text) covering the years 1712, 1735, and 1783 are included under the topic Early Palmer History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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

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Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Palmer Settlers in United States in the 17th Century


  • William Palmer, who arrived in Plymouth in 1621 aboard the " Fortune"
  • Daniel Palmer, who arrived in Virginia in 1621
  • Frances Palmer, who arrived in Plymouth in 1623 aboard the "Anne and the Little James"
  • Frances Palmer, who arrived in Plymouth, Massachusetts in 1623
  • Joane Palmer, who landed in Virginia in 1624-1625


Palmer Settlers in United States in the 18th Century


  • Eliza Palmer, who arrived in Virginia in 1702
  • Elizabeth Palmer, who landed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1706-1707
  • Isaac Palmer, who landed in Virginia in 1714
  • Mary Palmer, who landed in Virginia in 1718
  • Jacob Palmer, aged 26, landed in Pennsylvania in 1738


Palmer Settlers in United States in the 19th Century


  • Esther Palmer, who landed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1816
  • James Palmer, who arrived in America in 1824
  • David Palmer, who landed in Washington County, Pennsylvania in 1826
  • Juan Palmer, aged 48, arrived in New Orleans, La in 1829
  • Andrew Palmer, aged 36, landed in New Orleans, La in 1836


Palmer Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century


  • Mr. Elliott Palmer U.E. who settled in Belle Vue, Beaver Harbour, Charlotte County, New Brunswick c. 1783
  • Mr. John Palmer U.E. who arrived in Port Roseway, [Shelbourne], Nova Scotia on December 13, 1783 was passenger number 350 aboard the ship "HMS Clinton", picked up on November 14, 1783 at East River, New York, USA
  • Mr. Theodore Palmer U.E. (b. 1767), aged 16 who arrived in Port Roseway, [Shelbourne], Nova Scotia on October 26, 1783 was passenger number 108 aboard the ship "HMS Clinton", picked up on September 20, 1783 at East River, New York, USA
  • Mr. David Palmer Sr., U.E. who settled in Canada c. 1784
  • Mr. Joseph Palmer U.E. who settled in Saint John, New Brunswick c. 1784


Palmer Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century


  • Noah Palmer, who arrived in Canada in 1828
  • Merritt Palmer, who arrived in Canada in 1830

Palmer Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century


  • Stephen Palmer, English convict from Gloucester, who was transported aboard the "Asia" on September 3rd, 1820, settling in New South Wales, Austraila
  • William Palmer, English convict from Lancaster, who was transported aboard the "Asia" on September 3rd, 1820, settling in New South Wales, Austraila
  • Joseph Palmer, English convict from Gloucester, who was transported aboard the "Adamant" on March 16, 1821, settling in New South Wales, Australia
  • John Palmer, English convict from Middlesex, who was transported aboard the "Asia" on April 1st, 1822, settling in New South Wales, Austraila
  • John Palmer, English convict from Essex, who was transported aboard the "Arab" on July 3, 1822, settling in Van Diemen's Land, Austraila


Palmer Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century


  • G.T. Palmer arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Aurora" in 1840
  • Richard Palmer, aged 27, a carpenter, arrived in Port Nicholson aboard the ship "Slains Castle" in 1841
  • Eliza Palmer, aged 27, arrived in Port Nicholson aboard the ship "Slains Castle" in 1841
  • William Palmer arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Whitby" in 1841
  • Robert Palmer, aged 21, a bricklayer, arrived in Nelson aboard the ship "Fifeshire" in 1842


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  • Gregg Palmer (1927-2015), born Palmer Edvind Lee, an American actor, best known for his varying roles in twenty episodes of CBS's Gunsmoke (1960-1975)
  • Mr. Charles Palmer (d. 1915), American 3rd Class passenger from Camden, New Jersey, USA, who sailed aboard the RMS Lusitania and died in the sinking
  • Miss Kathleen Palmer (d. 1915), American 2nd Class passenger from North Augusta, South Carolina, USA, who sailed aboard the RMS Lusitania and died in the sinking
  • Mr. Frank Arthur Palmer (d. 1915), American 2nd Class passenger from North Augusta, South Carolina, USA, who sailed aboard the RMS Lusitania and died in the sinking
  • Major-General Williston Birkhimer Palmer (1899-1973), American Vice Chief of Staff, US Army (1955-1957)
  • Lieutenant-General Charles Day Palmer (1902-1999), American Deputy Commander in Chief European Command (1959-1962)
  • Michael Palmer (b. 1945), American orchestral conductor
  • Marlon Palmer, American NBA basketball player for the Colorado 14ers
  • Daniel David Palmer (1845-1913), Canadian-born, American founder of chiropractic
  • Earl Cyril Palmer (1924-2008), American drummer and member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

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  • Freeman-Palmer and Related Families by Mary Ann Palmer-Schrepfer.
  • A Genealogy of Palmers by Andrew Stillman.
  • Memoirs: With Histories of Pound-Murphy-Willingham-Palmer-Pitts Families by Jerome B. Pound.
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  1. Siebmacher, J.J. Siebmacher's Grosses Wappenbuch 35 Volumes. Germany: Bauer & Raspe. Print.
  2. Passenger Lists of Vessels Arriving at Galveston Texas 1896-1951. National Archives Washington DC. Print.
  3. Oswald, G. Lexicon der Heraldik. Leipzig: 1984. Print.
  4. Jones, Henry Z. Palatine Families of New York 2 Volumes. Rockland, ME: Picton Press, 2001. Print. (ISBN 978-0961388829).
  5. Garland, Mary and Henry Garland Editions. Oxford Companion To German Literature 3rd Edition. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1997. Print. (ISBN 0198158963).
  6. Rupp, Daniel L. A Collection of Upwards of Thirty Thousand Names of German, Swiss, Dutch, French and Other Immigrants to Pennsylvania from 1727 to 1776. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 2000. Print. (ISBN 978-0806303024).
  7. Robb H. Amanda and Andrew Chesler. Encyclopedia of American Family Names. New York: Haper Collins, 1995. Print. (ISBN 0-06-270075-8).
  8. Strassburger, Ralph B. German Pioneers The Original Lists of Arrivals in the Port of Philadelphia 3 Volumes. Baltimore: Picton Press, 1992. Print. (ISBN 978-0929539980).
  9. Egle, William Henry. Pennsylvania Genealogies Scotch-Irish and German. Harrisburg: L.S. Hart, 1886. Print.
  10. Karlsruhe. Badisches Generallandesarchiv Baden Emigration lists 1866-1911. Salt Lake City: Microfilm of Card Index by the Genealogical Society of Utah. Print.
  11. ...

The Palmer Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Palmer 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 9 March 2016 at 15:17.

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