Canning History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The name Canning is an old Anglo-Saxon name. It comes from when a family lived in Hertfordshire where the name is derived from "canon, a member of an ecclesiastical order. There is a place called Canon, near Lisieux in Normandy." [1] The name may have also originated from the French, Canonne, a personal name. [2]

The Magni Rotuli Scaccarii Normanniae listed Galfridus and Radulfus Canonicus or Le Chanoin of Normandy, 1180-95 and about the same time the Pipe Rolls listed Gilbert and Robert Canonicus in England in 1189. [3]

Early Origins of the Canning family

The surname Canning was first found in Hertfordshire where "Cannon is an old name in this county, both at Nast Hyde in St. Peter's and at Clothall; there was a John Canon of Ware or Shenley in the time of Henry VI. In the 13th century the name occurred, usually in the form of Canon, in Oxfordshire, Hunts, Cambridgeshire, etc. " [4]

The Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 listed John le Cannon, Oxfordshire and William le Canon as both holding lands that at that time. [5]

John Canon or Canonicus ( fl. 1329), was a schoolman who studied at Oxford, and became a member of the Franciscan order. "He is distinguished by the biographers for his eminence in philosophy, theology, and law, both canon and civil, and four books of commentaries on the 'Sentences' of Peter Lombard, some 'Lecturæ magistrales,' and 'Quæstiones disputatæ,' are ascribed to him. " [6]

William Canynges (1399?-1474), was a "merchant of Bristol, third son of John Canynges, burgess and merchant of that city, and Joan Wotton his wife, came of a family that stood high among the merchants of Bristol, for the elder William Canynges, his grandfather, a wealthy cloth manufacturer, was six times mayor, and thrice a representative of the city in parliament.' [6]

Early History of the Canning family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Canning research. Another 183 words (13 lines of text) covering the years 1300, 1456, 1827, 1862, 1663, 1722, 1663, 1697, 1707, 1708 and are included under the topic Early Canning History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Canning Spelling Variations

Before the last few hundred years, the English language had no fast system of spelling rules. For that reason, spelling variations are commonly found in early Anglo-Saxon surnames. Over the years, many variations of the name Canning were recorded, including Canning, Cannings, Cannyng, Caning, Canings, Canyng and many more.

Early Notables of the Canning family (pre 1700)

Distinguished members of the family include Robert Cannon (1663-1722), Dean of Lincoln, born in London in 1663, educated at Eton and at King's College, Cambridge. "He held for a time a fellowship...
Another 31 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Canning Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Canning family to Ireland

Some of the Canning family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 57 words (4 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Canning migration to the United States +

To escape oppression and starvation at that time, many English families left for the "open frontiers" of the New World with all its perceived opportunities. In droves people migrated to the many British colonies, those in North America in particular, paying high rates for passages in cramped, unsafe ships. Although many of the settlers did not make the long passage alive, those who did see the shores of North America perceived great opportunities before them. Many of the families that came from England went on to make essential contributions to the emerging nations of Canada and the United States. Research into various historical records revealed some of first members of the Canning family emigrate to North America:

Canning Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Elizabeth Canning, who landed in America in 1754
  • Elizabeth Canning, who arrived in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1754 [7]
Canning Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • William Canning, who landed in New York in 1811 [7]
  • Edward Canning, who landed in New York in 1818 [7]
  • Joseph Canning, aged 28, who landed in America in 1822 [7]
  • Marcus Canning, aged 18, who arrived in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1834 [7]
  • John Canning, aged 20, who arrived in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1834 [7]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Canada Canning migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Canning Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • James Canning, aged 26, who arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick aboard the ship "Highlander" in 1834

Australia Canning migration to Australia +

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

Canning Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • William Canning, aged 39, a miner, who arrived in South Australia in 1851 aboard the ship "Oregon" [8]
  • William Canning, aged 14, a miner, who arrived in South Australia in 1851 aboard the ship "Oregon" [8]
  • Mary Canning, aged 19, a servant, who arrived in South Australia in 1851 aboard the ship "Oregon" [8]
  • Anne Canning, aged 19, a domestic servant, who arrived in South Australia in 1855 aboard the ship "Aliquis"

New Zealand Canning 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:

Canning Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Joseph Canning, who landed in Wellington, New Zealand in 1840
  • Joseph Canning, aged 28, a carpenter, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Martha Ridgeway" in 1840
  • Mary Canning, aged 21, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Martha Ridgeway" in 1840
  • Mr. Joseph Canning, (b. 1812), aged 28, British carpenter travelling from England aboard the ship "Martha Ridgway" arriving in Wellington, New Zealand on 14th November 1840 [9]
  • Mrs. Mary Canning, (b. 1819), aged 21, British settler travelling from England aboard the ship "Martha Ridgway" arriving in Wellington, New Zealand on 14th November 1840 [9]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Contemporary Notables of the name Canning (post 1700) +

  • Wilbert R. Canning, American Republican politician, Alternate Delegate to Republican National Convention from Florida, 1972 [10]
  • Thomas J. Canning, American politician, Mayor of Greenbelt, Maryland, 1947-49, 1955-59 [10]
  • John E. Canning, American Democrat politician, Alternate Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Rhode Island, 1912 [10]
  • Ed A. Canning, American Republican politician, Alternate Delegate to Republican National Convention from Iowa, 1900 [10]
  • Christopher S. Canning, American politician, Village President of Wilmette, Illinois, 2005-09 [10]
  • C. Milan Canning, American politician, Mayor of Maywood, California, 1952-53 [10]
  • George Canning (1770-1827), English statesman, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom in 1827, Chancellor of the Exchequer in 1827, Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs (1822-1827), Ambassador to Lisbon (1814-1816) [11]
  • Elizabeth Canning (1734-1773), English maidservant who claimed to have been abducted and held in a hayloft for almost a month [11]
  • Earl Charles John Canning (1812-1862), 1st Earl Canning, English statesman, Governor-General of India during the Indian Rebellion of 1857 [11]
  • William Canning (1778-1860), English clergyman, Canon of Windsor from 1828 to 1860
  • ... (Another 13 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Halifax Explosion
  • Mr. Wiley Benjamin  Canning (1892-1917), Canadian Brakeman from the Canadian Government Railway from Truro, Nova Scotia, Canada who died in the explosion [12]


The Canning 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: Dum vigilio tutus
Motto Translation: While I watch I am safe.


  1. ^ Lowe, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  2. ^ Barber, Henry, British Family Names London: Elliot Stock, 62 Paternoster Row, 1894. Print.
  3. ^ 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)
  4. ^ Guppy, Henry Brougham, Homes of Family Names in Great Britain. 1890. Print.
  5. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  6. ^ Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print
  7. ^ 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)
  8. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) The barque OREGON, 521 tons - 1851 voyage to South Australia. Retrieved http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1851Oregon.htm
  9. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 17th October 2018). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html
  10. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, October 19) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html
  11. ^ Wikisource contributors. "Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900." Wikisource . Wikisource , 4 Jun. 2018. Web. 31 Oct. 2019
  12. ^ Halifax Explosion Book of Remembrance | Maritime Museum of the Atlantic. (Retrieved 2014, June 23) . Retrieved from https://maritimemuseum.novascotia.ca/what-see-do/halifax-explosion/halifax-explosion-book-remembrance


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