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Origins Available: English, Scottish


The origins of the Reid surname are uncertain. In some instances, it was no doubt derived from the Old English word "read," meaning "red," and was a nickname that came to be a surname. Either way, we may conclude that it meant "red-haired" or "ruddy complexioned." To confuse matters more, there are also instances where the surname Reid is thought to be derived from one of various place names, such as Read in Lancashire, and Rede in Suffolk.

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The surname Reid was first found in Aberdeenshire (Gaelic: Siorrachd Obar Dheathain), a historic county, and present day Council Area of Aberdeen, located in the Grampian region of northeastern Scotland where the name has been found since the 14th century. Ancient charters show the name as Rufus (Latinized,) records include an Ada Rufus who witnessed resignation of the lands of Ingilbristoun in 1204; and a William Rufus, who was a juror on an inquest on the lands of Padevinan in 1259. For the purposes of Clan identification, the family name Reid is officially a sept of the Clan Robertson and as such is entitled to the Clan Badge and Crest of the Robertsons.

Spelling variations of this family name include: Ried, Reid, Read, Reed and others.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Reid research. Another 717 words (51 lines of text) covering the years 1296, 1296, 1335, 1362, 1364, 1375, 1494, 1376, 1558, 1543, 1357, 1439, 1639, 1625, 1618, 1721 and 1806 are included under the topic Early Reid History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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Notable amongst the Clan from early times was Thomas Reid (d. 1625), who was appointed Latin secretary to King James I of Scotland in 1618. He is best known for founding the first public reference library in Scotland, through bequeath, in Aberdeen...

Another 41 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Reid Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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Some of the Reid family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 79 words (6 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Reid Settlers in 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 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
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Reid Settlers in 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
  • ...

Reid Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century

  • Daniel Reid, who arrived in Montreal in 1770
  • Mr. James Reid U.E. who settled in Sissiboo [Digby], Dibgy County, Nova Scotia c. 1784 he served in the Loyalist Regiment
  • Mr. William Reid U.E. who settled in Canada c. 1784

Reid Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century

  • John Reid, aged 25, a farmer, arrived in Pictou, Nova Scotia aboard the ship "Commerce" in 1803
  • Eliza Reid, aged 23, arrived in Pictou, Nova Scotia aboard the ship "Commerce" in 1803
  • Alexander Reid, aged 3 1/4, arrived in Pictou, Nova Scotia aboard the ship "Commerce" in 1803
  • Ann Reid, aged 1 1/4, arrived in Pictou, Nova Scotia aboard the ship "Commerce" in 1803
  • Alexander Reid, who arrived in Canada in 1828
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Reid Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century

  • Jane Reid, British convict from Britain, who was transported aboard the "Alexander" on November 4, 1815, settling in New South Wales, Australia
  • Alexander Reid, Scottish convict from Glasgow, who was transported aboard the "Agamemnon" on April 22, 1820, settling in New South Wales, Australia
  • James Reid, a joiner, arrived in Van Diemenís Land (now Tasmania) sometime between 1825 and 1832
  • John Reid, a joiner, arrived in Van Diemenís Land (now Tasmania) sometime between 1825 and 1832
  • James Reid arrived in Glenelg Roads aboard the ship "Pestonjee Bomanjee" in 1838
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Reid Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century

  • Adam Reid arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Bengal Merchant" in 1840
  • David Reid, aged 39, a carpenter, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Bengal Merchant" in 1840
  • Thomas Reid, aged 23, a painter, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Bengal Merchant" in 1840
  • Mary Ann Reid, aged 20, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Bengal Merchant" in 1840
  • Conrad Reid arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Cashmere" in 1851
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  • 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
  • Alan Reid (b. 1954), Scottish Liberal Democrat politician
  • Sir Thomas Wemyss Reid (1842-1905), Scottish journalist and biographer
  • Robert Paul Reid (b. 1934), Scottish industrial executive
  • James Scott Cumberland Reid (1890-1975), Scottish judge
  • Alastair Reid (b. 1926), Scottish poet
  • John Robert Reid (1928-2016), Australian prelate, Bishop of South Sydney (1972-1993)
  • Patrick "Paddy" Joseph Reid (1924-2016), Irish dual-code rugby centre who played for the Ireland National Team (1947-1948)
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Reid Historic Events



Empress of Ireland

  • Mr. H. Reid, British Fireman from United Kingdom who worked aboard the Empress of Ireland and died in the sinking on May 29th 1914
  • Mr. James Reid, British Fireman from United Kingdom who worked aboard the Empress of Ireland and died in the sinking on May 29th 1914
  • Mr. James Reid, British Trimmer from United Kingdom who worked aboard the Empress of Ireland and died in the sinking on May 29th 1914
  • Mr. Charles Reid, English Third Class Passenger from Leicester, England, United Kingdom who was traveling aboard the Empress of Ireland and died in the sinking on May 29th 2014

Halifax Explosion

  • Master Samuel Raymond† Reid (1915-1917), Canadian resident from Protestant Orphanage, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada who died in the Halifax Explosion on 6th December 1917
  • Miss Florence† Reid (1906-1917), Canadian resident from Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada who died in the Halifax Explosion on 6th December 1917
  • Miss Mary Florence† Reid (1906-1917), Canadian resident from Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada who died in the Halifax Explosion on 6th December 1917

HMAS Sydney II

  • Mr. Graham Roy Reid (1923-1941), Australian Signalman from Five Dock, New South Wales, Australia, who sailed into battle aboard HMAS Sydney II on the 19th November 1941 and died during the sinking

HMS Prince of Wales

  • Mr. Neville Reid, British Lieutenant Commander, who sailed in to battle on the HMS Prince of Wales and survived the sinking

HMS Repulse

  • Mr. Thomas Reid, British Chief Petty Officer Telegraphist, who sailed into battle on the HMS Repulse and survived the sinking, also sailed aboard the HMS Anking and was lost when it sunk 1942
  • Mr. James K Reid, British Engine Room Artificer, who sailed into battle on the HMS Repulse and survived the sinking
  • Mr. John G Reid, British, who sailed into battle on the HMS Repulse and survived the sinking

RMS Lusitania

  • Mr. James Reid, English Seaman from Liverpool, England, who worked aboard the RMS Lusitania and died in the sinking
  • Mr. Alfred Reid, English Third Waiter from Liverpool, England, who worked aboard the RMS Lusitania and died in the sinking
  • Mrs. Ellen Reid, English 3rd Class passenger residing in New York, New York, USA, who sailed aboard the RMS Lusitania and died in the sinking and was recovered
  • Mr. Peter Reid, American 2nd Class passenger from Little Rock, Arkansas, USA, who sailed aboard the RMS Lusitania and died in the sinking
  • Mr. John H. Reid, English 3rd Class passenger returning from Trenton, New Jersey, USA going to work in the Woolwich Arsenal, who sailed aboard the RMS Lusitania and died in the sinking
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  • 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.
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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: Fortitudine et labore
Motto Translation: By fortitute and exertion.

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Reid Clan Badge
Reid Clan Badge

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A clan is a social group made up of a number of distinct branch-families that actually descended from, or accepted themselves as descendants of, a common ancestor. The word clan means simply children. The idea of the clan as a community is necessarily based around this idea of heredity and is most often ruled according to a patriarchal structure. For instance, the clan chief represented the hereditary "parent" of the entire clan. The most prominent example of this form of society is the Scottish Clan system...

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Septs of the Distinguished Name Reid
Read, Reade, Reed, Reede, Reid and more.

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Citations



    Other References

    1. Burke, John Bernard Ed. The Roll of Battle Abbey. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
    2. Browning, Charles H. Americans of Royal Descent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
    3. Moncrieffe, Sir Ian of That Ilk and Don Pottinger. Clan Map Scotland of Old. Edinburgh: Bartholomew and Son, 1983. Print.
    4. Samuelsen, W. David. New York City Passenger List Manifests Index 1820 - 1824. North Salt Lake, Utah: Accelerated Indexing Systems International, 1986. Print.
    5. 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).
    6. Le Patourel, John. The Norman Empire. New York: Oxford University Press, 1976. Print. (ISBN 0-19-822525-3).
    7. Warner, Philip Warner. Famous Scottish Battles. New York: Barnes and Noble, 1996. Print. (ISBN 0-76070-004-4).
    8. Bain, Robert. The Clans and Tartans of Scotland. Glasgow & London: Collins, 1968. Print. (ISBN 000411117-6).
    9. Robb H. Amanda and Andrew Chesler. Encyclopedia of American Family Names. New York: Haper Collins, 1995. Print. (ISBN 0-06-270075-8).
    10. Markale, J. Celtic Civilization. London: Gordon & Cremonesi, 1976. Print.
    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 12 July 2016 at 01:18.

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