Show ContentsChurcher History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Churcher is a name of ancient Anglo-Saxon origin and comes from the family once having lived in Gloucestershire, where they took their name from the village of Churcham. The place-name is comprised of two elements: church and hamm. Church meant just that, and hamm was a Old English word for river meadow. The name meant "dweller by the church on the river meadow."

One source claims the name could have been derived from the name Churchyard or a local name as in "at the churchay," from the residence nearby. [1]

Early Origins of the Churcher family

The surname Churcher was first found in Gloucestershire where they held a family seat from very ancient times, some say well before the Norman Conquest and the arrival of Duke William at Hastings in 1066 A.D.

Early History of the Churcher family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Churcher research. Another 60 words (4 lines of text) covering the years 1659, 1723, 1659, 1675, 1682 and 1723 are included under the topic Early Churcher History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Churcher Spelling Variations

Sound was what guided spelling in the essentially pre-literate Middle Ages, so one person's name was often recorded under several variations during a single lifetime. Also, before the advent of the printing press and the first dictionaries, the English language was not standardized. Therefore, spelling variations were common, even among the names of the most literate people. Known variations of the Churcher family name include Churcher, Churchar, Churcham and others.

Early Notables of the Churcher family (pre 1700)

Notables of this surname at this time include: Richard Churcher (1659-1723), an English businessman and philanthropist who made his fortune in the British East India Company. He founded Churcher's College, a school in Hampshire. He was the eldest son of Richard Churcher, gentleman, of Funtington, Sussex, was born there in 1659. "He was apprenticed (1675-1682) to John Jacob, an eminent citizen and barber-surgeon of London...
Another 65 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Churcher Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

United States Churcher migration to the United States +

For political, religious, and economic reasons, thousands of English families boarded ships for Ireland, Canada, the America colonies, and many of smaller tropical colonies in the hope of finding better lives abroad. Although the passage on the cramped, dank ships caused many to arrive in the New World diseased and starving, those families that survived the trip often went on to make valuable contributions to those new societies to which they arrived. Early immigrants bearing the Churcher surname or a spelling variation of the name include:

Churcher Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Charles Churcher, who landed in America in 1765 [2]
Churcher Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Thomas Churcher, who arrived in Philadelphia in 1844

Australia Churcher migration to Australia +

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

Churcher Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Emery Churcher, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Cleveland" in 1839 [3]
  • William Churcher, aged 28, a plasterer, who arrived in South Australia in 1855 aboard the ship "Caroline" [4]

West Indies Churcher migration to West Indies +

The British first settled the British West Indies around 1604. They made many attempts but failed in some to establish settlements on the Islands including Saint Lucia and Grenada. By 1627 they had managed to establish settlements on St. Kitts (St. Christopher) and Barbados, but by 1641 the Spanish had moved in and destroyed some of these including those at Providence Island. The British continued to expand the settlements including setting the First Federation in the British West Indies by 1674; some of the islands include Barbados, Bermuda, Cayman Island, Turks and Caicos, Jamaica and Belize then known as British Honduras. By the 1960's many of the islands became independent after the West Indies Federation which existed from 1958 to 1962 failed due to internal political conflicts. After this a number of Eastern Caribbean islands formed a free association. [5]
Churcher Settlers in West Indies in the 17th Century
  • Thomas Churcher who settled in Barbados in 1654

Contemporary Notables of the name Churcher (post 1700) +

  • Teresa Churcher, English actress from St Albans, Hertfordshire, known for her roles in Gosford Park (2001), The Legend of Tarzan (2016) and Oliver Twist (2005)
  • Major-General John Bryan Churcher CB DSO (1905-1997), British Army officer who during World War II commanded the 159th Infantry Brigade during the campaign in Northwest Europe
  • Harry Churcher (1910-1972), British racewalker in the 10 km walk at the 1948 Summer Olympics
  • Charles Churcher (1873-1951), British sports shooter in the team 300 metre free rifle event at the 1908 Summer Olympics
  • Christine Churcher (b. 1954), Ghana politician, Ministry of Education (2001-2005)
  • Lieutenant-Colonel Sir Arthur Ernest Churcher (1871-1951), British Army officer, political officer and Mayor of Windsor
  • Peter Churcher (b. 1964), Australian artist from Brisbane, Queensland, a realist painter who paints portraits and figures, son of Betty Churcher
  • Elizabeth Ann Dewar "Betty" Churcher AO (1931-2015), née Cameron, an Australian arts administrator, best known as director of the National Gallery of Australia from 1990 to 1997

  1. Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  2. 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)
  3. State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) CLEVELAND 1839. Retrieved from
  4. South Australian Register Thursday 26th April 1855. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) Caroline 1855. Retrieved
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