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

Origins Available: Dutch, English


The family name Roosevelt is thought to be of Norman origins. Originally, Roosevelt was a name given to a person with red hair which was in turn derived from the Old French nickname le rous, meaning redhead. Another equally valid derivation suggests that the name is a shortened form of the Norman given name Rufus.

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Spelling variations in names were a common occurrence in the eras before English spelling was standardized a few hundred years ago. In the Middle Ages, even the literate regularly changed the spellings of their names as the English language incorporated elements of French, Latin, and other European languages. Many variations of the name Roosevelt have been found, including Rous, Rouse, Rowse and others.

First found in Devon. The first on record was Radulphus le Rufus, a knight in the train of William the Conqueror who became one of the Justices Itinerant of the counties of Wiltshire, Dorset, Somerset, Devon and Cornwall temp. Henry II. It is from this eminent person that the family of Edmerston and Halton, co. Devon descend. [1] However, some of the family were found at early time further north at Mearly in Lancashire. "The chief part of the township was granted by Jordan le Rous to Stephen, afterwards called de Merley, whose daughter married Adam de Nowell, and carried the Hall and manor into that family, 38th of Edward III." [2]


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Roosevelt research. Another 399 words (28 lines of text) covering the years 1608, 1670, 1656, 1730, 1776, 1731, 1579, 1659, 1618, 1680, 1660, 1645, 1626, 1605, 1677, 1653, 1660, 1608, 1676, 1654, 1660 and 1650 are included under the topic Early Roosevelt History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Another 187 words (13 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Roosevelt Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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For many English families, the social climate in England was oppressive and lacked opportunity for change. For such families, the shores of Ireland, Australia, and the New World beckoned. They left their homeland at great expense in ships that were overcrowded and full of disease. Many arrived after the long voyage sick, starving, and without a penny. But even those were greeted with greater opportunity than they could have experienced back home. Numerous English settlers who arrived in the United States and Canada at this time went on to make important contributions to the developing cultures of those countries. Many of those families went on to make significant contributions to the rapidly developing colonies in which they settled. Early North American records indicate many people bearing the name Roosevelt were among those contributors:

Roosevelt Settlers in United States in the 17th Century


  • Claes Martensen Roosevelt, who landed in New York in 1638

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  • Brigadier-General Elliott Roosevelt (1910-1990), American Commanding General 325th Photographic Wing in 1945
  • Brigadier General Theodore Roosevelt Jr. (1887-1944), American officer awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor in 1944. He was the eldest son of President Theodore Roosevelt
  • President Theodore Roosevelt (1858-1919), the twenty-sixth President of the United States, and a leader of the Republican Party and of the Progressive Movement
  • President Franklin Delano Roosevelt (1882-1945), the thirty-second President of the United States. Elected to four terms in office, he served from 1933 to 1945 and is the only U.S. president to have served more than two terms
  • Edith Kermit Carow Roosevelt (1861-1948), second wife of president Theodore Roosevelt
  • Alice Hathaway Lee Roosevelt (1861-1884), first wife of president Theodore Roosevelt


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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: Vescitur Christo
Motto Translation: He feeds on Christ.

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  1. ^ Burke, John Bernard, The Roll of Battle Abbey. London: Edward Churton, 26, Holles Street, 1848, Print.
  2. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.

Other References

  1. 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).
  2. Hanks, Patricia and Flavia Hodges. A Dictionary of Surnames. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988. Print. (ISBN 0-19-211592-8).
  3. Innes, Thomas and Learney. The Tartans of the Clans and Families of Scotland 1st Edition. Edinburgh: W & A. K. Johnston Limited, 1938. Print.
  4. 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).
  5. Robb H. Amanda and Andrew Chesler. Encyclopedia of American Family Names. New York: Haper Collins, 1995. Print. (ISBN 0-06-270075-8).
  6. Marcharn, Frederick George. A Constitutional History of Modern England 1485 to the Present. London: Harper and Brothers, 1960. Print.
  7. Leeson, Francis L. Dictionary of British Peerages. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1986. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-1121-5).
  8. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  9. Bullock, L.G. Historical Map of England and Wales. Edinburgh: Bartholomew and Son, 1971. Print.
  10. Reaney P.H and R.M. Wilson. A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X).
  11. ...

The Roosevelt Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Roosevelt 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 6 April 2016 at 07:34.

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