Conyer History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The name Conyer was brought to England in the great wave of migration following the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Conyer family lived in Coisgnières, Normandy, "as the name was spelt in Normandy; one of the noblest families in the North of England." [1]

Early Origins of the Conyer family

The surname Conyer was first found in Durham at Sockburn, where the then Bishop of Durham, Ralph Flambard, granted lands to Roger de Conyers sometime between 1099 and 1133.

"Roger Conyers was by William the Conqueror made Constable of Durham Castle and Keeper of all the arms of ye souldiers within the Castle, was after past to him ye saide Roger by deede to him and his heires mailes for ever, under the great scale of William de Santo Carilepho, Bishop of Durham." [1]

A second Roger succeeded to his father, and to him followed a third to whom "Henricus II. Rex. Anghse dedit vel confirmavit Constabulatum de Dunelme."

"I know, of no actual proof to establish this transmission ; but there is sufficient evidence from charters in the Treasury to prove that the Norman family of Conyers, Lords of Bishopton (and possibly from the same early date owners of Sockburn), held the rank of nobles or Barons of the Bishopric at least from the reign of Henry I. Bishop Ralph Flambard gave Rungetun in Yorkshire to Roger Conyers before 1126. His son was that Roger Conyers whose important services to Bishop William de St. Barbara are on record in Simeon. The story runs thus: Conyers afforded the Bishop a safe retreat in his strength or Peel-house of Bishopton; and he afterwards had the address to bring the Scotch intruder Comyn a humble, kneeling penitent before the Episcopal throne. To bring about this most wished conclusion implies as much courage, and certainly more address, than if the Constable had finished the contest in the usual manner with the bloody hand. The Constable's staff, and the Wardenship of Durham Castle, which he had recovered from Comyn, seems a most appropriate reward; and if the green acres of Sockburn were added to the gift, he was still not overpaid." [2]

Many of the family were found at East and West Newbiggin. "This place formerly belonged to the Conyers family, with whom it continued until the beginning of the 17th century, when Sir George Conyers, Knt., and his son, alienated the manor in various parcels to their tenants. " [3] Hutton-Conyers in the wapentake of Allertonshire in the North Riding of Yorkshire is another ancient family seat. "This place was anciently the residence of a branch of the Conyers family, whose Hall appears to have been on the north side of the village, in a field still called the Hallgarth." [3]

Early History of the Conyer family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Conyer research. Another 379 words (27 lines of text) covering the years 1195, 1313, 1324, 1507, 1628, 1628, 1731, 1810, 1587, 1663, 1630, 1619, 1684, 1660, 1685, 1758, 1650, 1725, 1695, 1666, 1728, 1633 and 1694 are included under the topic Early Conyer History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Conyer Spelling Variations

Norman surnames are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations. The frequent changes in surnames are largely due to the fact that the Old and Middle English languages lacked definite spelling rules. The introduction of Norman French to England, as well as the official court languages of Latin and French, also had pronounced influences on the spelling of surnames. Since medieval scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded, rather than adhering to any specific spelling rules, it was common to find the same individual referred to with different spellings. The name has been spelled Conyers, Coniers, Coigniers, Convers, Converse and many more.

Early Notables of the Conyer family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Sir John Conyers of Horden; Deacon Edward Convers (1587-1663) born in Navestock, England, he arrived in Salem, Massachusetts with the Winthrop Fleet in 1630, and quickly became one of the founders of Woburn, Massachusetts; Tristram Conyers (1619-1684), an English lawyer and politician, Member of Parliament for Maldon...
Another 55 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Conyer Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Conyer family to Ireland

Some of the Conyer family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. More information about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Conyer migration to the United States +

Many English families emigrated to North American colonies in order to escape the political chaos in Britain at this time. Unfortunately, many English families made the trip to the New World under extremely harsh conditions. Overcrowding on the ships caused the majority of the immigrants to arrive diseased, famished, and destitute from the long journey across the stormy Atlantic. Despite these hardships, many of the families prospered and went on to make invaluable contributions to the development of the cultures of the United States and Canada. Early North American immigration records have revealed a number of people bearing the name Conyer or a variant listed above:

Conyer Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Thomas Conyer, who landed in Virginia in 1652 [4]


  1. ^ Cleveland, Dutchess of The Battle Abbey Roll with some Account of the Norman Lineages. London: John Murray, Abermarle Street, 1889. Print. Volume 3 of 3
  2. ^ Surtees, Robert, The History and Antiquities of the County Palatine of Durham. London: J. Nichols and Son, 25 Parliament Street, 1820. Print.
  3. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  4. ^ 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)


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