Amos History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The Amos family name is thought to be of Norman origins. It comes from an early member of the family who was a good friend or beloved one. The name was originally derived from the Old French given name or nickname Amis or Ami, which means friend. Alternatively the name could have been derived from the "descendant of Amos (burden-bearer.)" [1]

Early Origins of the Amos family

The surname Amos was first found in the county of Northumberland, where they were granted lands by King William after the Norman Conquest in 1066. They originated from Exmes, a town in the department of Orne, in Normandy.

"Amos, like Amias or Amyas, represents popular forms of the Norman-French Aimee, or Amys. " [2] Kirby's Quest had the first listing for the family: Thomas Amys, Somerset, 1 Edward III (during the first year of King Edward III's reign.) [3]

Another sources notes: "the present family of Amos, established in the Faversham district, [in Kent] probably can claim an ancestor in Thomas Amos, a well - to - do yeoman of Ospringe, who in 1769 bequeathed £100 for the poor of Molash." [4]

Early History of the Amos family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Amos research. Another 178 words (13 lines of text) covering the years 1889, 1640, 1692, 1721, 1576, 1633, 1619, 1695, 1689, 1759, 1641, 1721 and 1692 are included under the topic Early Amos History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Amos Spelling Variations

Endless spelling variations are a prevailing characteristic of Norman surnames. Old and Middle English lacked any definite spelling rules, and the introduction of Norman French added an unfamiliar ingredient to the English linguistic stew. French and Latin, the languages of the court, also influenced spellings. Finally, Medieval scribes generally spelled words according to how they sounded, so one person was often referred to by different spellings in different documents. The name has been spelled Ames, Amess, Amies, Amis, Amiss, Amos, Hames, Haymes, Eames, Emmes and many more.

Early Notables of the Amos family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was William Ames (Latin: Guilielmus Amesius) (1576-1633), an English Protestant divine, philosopher, and controversialist; Henry Metcalfe Ames, of Lynden, Northumberland; Joseph Ames (1619-1695), an English naval commander from Norfolk who commanded several ships of war, and made repeated voyages to...
Another 46 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Amos Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Amos migration to the United States +

To escape the political and religious persecution within England at the time, many English families left for the various British colonies abroad. The voyage was extremely difficult, though, and the cramped, dank ships caused many to arrive in the New World diseased and starving. But for those who made it, the trip was most often worth it. Many of the families who arrived went on to make valuable contributions to the emerging nations of Canada and the United States. An inquiry into the early roots of North American families reveals a number of immigrants bearing the name Amos or a variant listed above:

Amos Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Hugh Amos, who landed in Boston, Massachusetts in 1666 [5]
  • Michael Amos, who arrived in Maryland in 1675 [5]
Amos Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Josiah Amos, who settled in Maryland in 1728
  • Ann Amos, who settled in Virginia in 1731
  • William Amos, who arrived in Maryland in 1735 [5]
  • Jacob Amos, who arrived in Pennsylvania in 1765 [5]
  • Mathias Amos, who settled in Boston Massachusetts in 1766
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Amos Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Manuel Amos, who landed in Puerto Rico in 1814 [5]
  • Georg Friedrich Amos, who arrived in America in 1819 [5]
  • James Amos, who settled in New York state in 1820
  • Charles Amos, aged 40, who landed in Missouri in 1840 [5]
  • Zachariah Amos, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1850 [5]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Canada Amos migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Amos Settlers in Canada in the 20th Century
  • Mrs. Amos, who landed in Saint John, New Brunswick in 1907
  • A A Amos, who arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick in 1907

Australia Amos migration to Australia +

Emigration to Australia followed the First Fleets of convicts, tradespeople and early settlers. Early immigrants include:

Amos Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • George Amos, a shipwright, who arrived in New South Wales, Australia sometime between 1825 and 1832
  • Thomas Amos, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Calphurnia" in 1849 [6]
  • George Amos, aged 27, who arrived in South Australia in 1854 aboard the ship "Dirigo" [7]

New Zealand Amos migration to New Zealand +

Emigration to New Zealand followed in the footsteps of the European explorers, such as Captain Cook (1769-70): first came sealers, whalers, missionaries, and traders. By 1838, the British New Zealand Company had begun buying land from the Maori tribes, and selling it to settlers, and, after the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840, many British families set out on the arduous six month journey from Britain to Aotearoa to start a new life. Early immigrants include:

Amos Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Francis Amos, who arrived in Nelson, New Zealand aboard the ship "John Masterman" in 1857
  • Mary Amos, who arrived in Nelson, New Zealand aboard the ship "John Masterman" in 1857
  • Mr. Gavin Amos, Scottish settler travelling from Glasgow aboard the ship "Sevilla" arriving in Dunedin, Otago, South Island, New Zealand on 2nd December 1859 [8]
  • Mr. Amos, British settler travelling from Britsol aboard the ship "Wave Queen" arriving in Port Chalmers, Dunedin, Otago, South Island, New Zealand on 4th August 1872 [8]
  • Mr. Godfrey Amos, (b. 1834), aged 45, English settler born in Kent travelling from Plymouth aboard the ship "Stad Haarlem" arriving in Wellington, New Zealand in 1879 [8]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Contemporary Notables of the name Amos (post 1700) +

  • Tori Amos (b. 1963), American pianist and singer-songwriter
  • Francis John Clarke Amos CBE (1924-1993), English town planner, architect and sociologist
  • Jill Edwina Amos CNZM (1927-2017), née Turner, a New Zealand politician and community leader
  • Phillip Albert Amos (1925-2007), New Zealand politician of the Labour Party
  • Robert Amos (b. 1950), Canadian artist living in Victoria
  • Imre Amos (1907-1944), Jewish-Hungarian painter
  • Bruce Amos (b. 1946), Canadian photographer
  • Clinton Amos Clauson (1895-1959), American Democrat politician, U.S. Collector of Internal Revenue for Maine, 1934-53; Mayor of Waterville, Maine, 1956-57; Governor of Maine, 1959 [9]
  • George Amos Hadley (1889-1954), English footballer who played at wing-half
  • David Amos Arblaster (1929-2006), Australian politician, Minister for Culture, Sport and Recreation in 1976, and Minister for Tourism in 1976

HMS Royal Oak
  • Ernest John Amos (1919-1939), born in Cannock, Staffordshire, England, British Able Seaman with the Royal Navy aboard the HMS Royal Oak when she was torpedoed by U-47 and sunk; he died in the sinking [10]


The Amos Motto +

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: Fama candida rosa dulcior
Motto Translation: Fame is sweeter than the white rose.


Suggested Readings for the name Amos +

  • 1426 "Ancestry from A to Z: Amos Zoll and Related Families" by Eugene P. Amos, "Some Early Families of the Altamaha Delta" by Bessie Lewis and Minnie Tremere Martin.

  1. ^ Smith, Eldson Coles, New Dictionary of American Family Names New York, Harper & Row, 1956. Print
  2. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  3. ^ Dickinson, F.H., Kirby's Quest for Somerset of 16th of Edward the 3rd London: Harrison and Sons, Printers in Ordinary to Her Majesty, St, Martin's Lane, 1889. Print.
  4. ^ Guppy, Henry Brougham, Homes of Family Names in Great Britain. 1890. Print.
  5. ^ Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
  6. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) The CALPHURNIA 1849. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1849Calpurnia.htm
  7. ^ South Australian Register Thursday 23rd November 1854. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) Dirigo 1854. Retrieved http://www.theshipslist.com/ships/australia/dirigo1854.shtml.
  8. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 26th March 2019). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html
  9. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2016, January 29) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html
  10. ^ Ships hit by U-boats crew list HMS Royal Oak (08) - (Retrieved 2018 February, 9th) - retrieved from https://uboat.net/allies/merchants/crews/ship68.html


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