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


The surname Ayres was first used in the Scottish/English Borderlands by an ancient Scottish people called the Strathclyde- Britons. It was a name for someone who lived in the city of Ayr in South-Western Scotland.

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The surname Ayres was first found in Ayrshire (Gaelic: Siorrachd Inbhir Àir), formerly a county in the southwestern Strathclyde region of Scotland, that today makes up the Council Areas of South, East, and North Ayrshire, where the family has held a family seat from ancient times. One of the first on record was Reginald Ayr, who was Clerk of Ayr in 1287 and Albinus Ayr had a charter of lands from King Robert the Bruce in 1315.

The many spelling variations in Medieval Scottish names result from the fact that scribes in that era spelled words according to sound. Translation too, was an undeveloped science, and many names were altered into complete obscurity. Over the years Ayres has been spelled Ayer, Air, Ayre, Ayers and others.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Ayres research. Another 133 words (10 lines of text) covering the years 1296, 1522, 1567, 1638 and 1712 are included under the topic Early Ayres History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Another 37 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Ayres Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Some of the Ayres family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 37 words (3 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Ayres Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century


  • Robert Ayres, English convict from London, who was transported aboard the "Asia" on October 22nd, 1824, settling in New South Wales, Australia
  • John Ayres, aged 20, a miner, arrived in South Australia in 1856 aboard the ship "Switzerland"

Ayres Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century


  • Charles Ayres, aged 21, a labourer, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Golden Sea" in 1874
  • Richard Ayres arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Maraval" in 1880
  • Florence B. Ayres, aged 19, a servant, arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Rangitikei" in 1884

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  • Robert Ayres (1914-1968), American film, stage and television actor
  • Robert Underwood Ayres (b. 1932), American-born physicist and economist
  • Ian Ayres (b. 1959), American professor at Yale Law School and Yale School of Management
  • Benjamin Ayres, American politician, Member of New Jersey State House of Assembly from Cumberland County, 1850-51
  • Albro Charles Ayres (1907-1981), American Republican politician, Member of South Dakota State House of Representatives, 1951-56
  • Albert Douglass Ayres (1874-1944), American Republican politician, Member of Nevada State House of Representatives, 1911-13
  • Daniel Ayres, American politician, Member of New Jersey State House of Assembly from Essex County, 1867
  • David Ayres, American politician, Member of New Jersey State House of Assembly from Essex County, 1859, 1866
  • E. S. Ayres (d. 1866), American politician, Mayor of Owensboro, Kentucky, 1866
  • Ebenezer Ayres, American politician, Member of Minnesota State House of Representatives, 1867, 1872

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  1. 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.
  2. Browning, Charles H. Americans of Royal Descent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  3. Markale, J. Celtic Civilization. London: Gordon & Cremonesi, 1976. Print.
  4. Magnusson, Magnus. Chambers Biographical Dictionary 5th edition. Edinburgh: W & R Chambers, 1990. Print.
  5. Black, George F. The Surnames of Scotland Their Origin, Meaning and History. New York: New York Public Library, 1946. Print. (ISBN 0-87104-172-3).
  6. Burke, John Bernard Ed. The Roll of Battle Abbey. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  7. Moncrieffe, Sir Ian of That Ilk and Don Pottinger. Clan Map Scotland of Old. Edinburgh: Bartholomew and Son, 1983. Print.
  8. Burke, Sir Bernard. Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Peerage and Baronetage, The Privy Council, Knightage and Compainonage. London: Burke Publishing, 1921. Print.
  9. Best, Hugh. Debrett's Texas Peerage. New York: Coward-McCann, 1983. Print. (ISBN 069811244X).
  10. Scots Kith and Kin And Illustrated Map Revised 2nd Edition. Edinburgh: Clan House/Albyn. Print.
  11. ...

The Ayres Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Ayres 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 20 February 2016 at 10:17.

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