Couch History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms 

The distinguished surname Couch emerged among the industrious people of Flanders, which was an important trading partner and political ally of Britain during the Middle Ages. As a result of the frequent commercial intercourse between the Flemish and English nations, many Flemish migrants settled in Britain. In early times, people were known by only a single name. However, as the population grew and people traveled further afield, it became increasingly necessary to assume an additional name to differentiate between bearers of the same personal name. Occupational surnames were derived from the common trades of the medieval era. The surname Couch is an occupational name for a maker of couches or beds or an upholsterer. The surname is derived from the Old French word couch, which means couch. Occupational names frequently were derived from the principal object associated with the activity of the original bearer, such as tools or products. These types of occupational surnames are called metonymic surnames.

Early Origins of the Couch family

The surname Couch was first found in Oxfordshire where they held a family seat from early times. Couch's Mill is a small hamlet in Cornwall which has been spelt Couchs Mill, Couch's Mill and Couches Mill over the years.

Important Dates for the Couch family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Couch research. Another 116 words (8 lines of text) covering the years 1270, 1273, 1295, 1544, 1563, 1758 and 1760 are included under the topic Early Couch History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Couch Spelling Variations

Flemish surnames are characterized by a large number of spelling variations. One reason for this is that medieval English lacked definite spelling rules. The spellings of surnames were also influenced by the official court languages, which were French and Latin. Names were rarely spelled consistently in medieval times. Scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded, rather than adhering to specific spelling rules, and people often had their names registered in several different forms throughout their lives. One of the greatest reasons for change is the linguistic uniqueness of the Flemish settlers in England, who spoke a language closely related to Dutch. The pronunciation and spelling of Flemish names were often altered to suit the tastes of English-speaking people. In many cases, the first, final, or middle syllables of surnames were eliminated. The name has been spelled Couche, Couch, Cowch, Cowche, Cauch, Cawch, Cauche, Cawche, Coutche, Coutch, Coucher, Cowcher, Couchur and many more.

Early Notables of the Couch family (pre 1700)

More information is included under the topic Early Couch Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the Couch family to Ireland

Some of the Couch family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 50 words (4 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Couch migration to the United States

Investigation of immigration and passenger lists has revealed a number of people bearing the name Couch:

Couch Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Mathew Couch, who arrived in Virginia in 1636 [1]
  • John Couch, who landed in New England in 1652 [1]
  • Alexander Couch, who landed in Virginia in 1654 [1]
  • Ambrose Couch, who arrived in Maryland in 1662 [1]
  • Charles Couch, who landed in Virginia in 1666 [1]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Couch Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Sarah Couch, who arrived in Virginia in 1701 [1]
  • Mr. Couch who settled in Louisiana in 1721
  • Joseph Couch, who arrived in New England in 1740 [1]
  • Elianore Couch, who landed in America in 1760
  • Arthur and Charles Couch, who settled in Maryland in 1774
Couch Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • James Couch, who landed in America in 1807 [1]
  • J P Couch, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1851 [1]
  • D. Couch settled in San Francisco, California in 1852
  • J Couch, who landed in Mobile, Ala in 1858 [1]
  • George Couch, aged 26, who arrived in New York in 1864 [1]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Couch migration to Canada

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Couch Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century
  • John Couch, who settled in Placentia, Newfoundland in 1794 [2]

Couch migration to Australia

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

Couch Settlers in Australia in the 18th Century
  • Mr. William Couch, Cornish settler convicted in Cornwall, UK on 24th March 1787, sentenced for life for burglary, transported aboard the ship "Neptune" on 19th January 1790 to New South Wales, Australia [3]
Couch Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Mr. John Couch, Cornish settler convicted in Cornwall, UK on 6th January 1835, sentenced for 7 years for stealing tin from McInness Steam Works in St. Austell, transported aboard the ship "Royal Sovereign" on 25th July 1835 to New South Wales, Australia [4]
  • William Highman Couch, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Waterloo" in 1840 [5]
  • Thomas Couch, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Theresa" in 1847 [6]
  • Peter Couch, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Royal George" in 1848 [7]
  • Mr. Jonathan Couch, (b. 1808), aged 40, Irish agricultural labourer from Dublin, Ireland travelling aboard the ship "Walmer Castle" arriving in New South Wales, Australia on 20th December 1848 [8]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Couch 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:

Couch Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • John Couch, aged 23, a carpenter, who arrived in Nelson, New Zealand aboard the ship "Sir Charles Forbes" in 1842
  • Jemima Couch, aged 19, who arrived in Nelson, New Zealand aboard the ship "Sir Charles Forbes" in 1842
  • Mr. William Couch, (b. 1821), aged 38, Cornish farm labourer departing on 28th August 1859 aboard the ship "Roman Emperor" arriving in Lyttelton, Canterbury, New Zealand on 27th January 1860 [9]
  • Mr. William Couch, (b. 1821), aged 38, British settler travelling from Gravesend aboard the ship "Roman Emperor" arriving in Lyttlelton, Christchurch, South Island, New Zealand on 26th January 1860 [10]
  • Tryphena Couch, (b. 1842), aged 21, Cornish settler departing on 18th June 1863 aboard the ship "Accrington" arriving in Lyttelton, Canterbury, New Zealand on 5th September 1863 [9]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Contemporary Notables of the name Couch (post 1700)

  • Malcom Ollie "Mal" Couch Jr (b. 1938), American founder and president of the Tyndale Theological Seminary
  • Jason Couch (b. 1969), American professional bowler in the Professional Bowlers Association
  • Timothy Scott "Tim" Couch (b. 1977), former American college and professional NFL football quarterback
  • John Heard Couch (1811-1870), American sea captain, pioneer in the Oregon Country, Treasurer for the Provisional Government of Oregon (1846-1847)
  • Darius Nash Couch (1822-1897), American soldier, businessman, and naturalist, general officer in the Union Army during the American Civil War
  • Virgil Couch, American diplomat
  • John Couch, American botanist
  • E. A. Couch, American Democrat politician, Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Alabama, 1964 [11]
  • Don Couch, American Republican politician, Candidate for Hawaii State Senate 5th District, 2002 [11]
  • Darius Nash Couch (1822-1897), American Democrat politician, Candidate for Governor of Massachusetts, 1865; U.S. Collector of Customs, 1866-67 [11]
  • ... (Another 20 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Historic Events for the Couch family

RMS Titanic
  • Mr. Joseph Henry Couch (d. 1912), aged 45, English Greaser from Southampton, Hampshire who worked aboard the RMS Titanic and died in the sinking [12]
  • Mr. Frank Couch (d. 1912), aged 28, English Able Seaman from Port Isaac, Cornwall who worked aboard the RMS Titanic and died in the sinking and was recovered by CS Mackay-Bennett [12]

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Citations

  1. ^ 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)
  2. ^ Seary E.R., Family Names of the Island of Newfoundland, Montreal: McGill's-Queen's Universtity Press 1998 ISBN 0-7735-1782-0
  3. ^ Cornwall Online Parish Clerks. (Retrieved 30th May 2018). Retrieved from http://www.opc-cornwall.org/Resc/pdfs/emigration_australia_convicts.pdf
  4. ^ Cornwall Online Parish Clerks. (Retrieved 30th May 2018). Retrieved from http://www.opc-cornwall.org/Resc/pdfs/emigration_australia_convicts.pdf
  5. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) WATERLOO 1840. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1840Waterloo.htm
  6. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) THERESA 1847. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1847Theresa.htm
  7. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) ROYAL GEORGE 1848. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1848RoyalGeorge.htm
  8. ^ Cornwall Online Parish Clerks. (Retrieved 2018, May 30). Ships' Passenger Lists of Arrivals in New South Wales on (1828 - 1842, 1848 - 1849) [PDF]. Retrieved from http://www.opc-cornwall.org/Resc/pdfs/emigration_nsw_1838_on.pdf
  9. ^ Cornwall Online Parish Clerks. (Retrieved 2018, April 30). Emigrants to Lyttelton 1858-84 [PDF]. Retrieved from http://www.opc-cornwall.org/Resc/pdfs/new_zealand_assisted.pdf
  10. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 26th March 2019). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html
  11. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, November 16) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html
  12. ^ Titanic Passenger List - Titanic Facts. (Retrieved 2016, July 13) . Retrieved from http://www.titanicfacts.net/titanic-passenger-list.html
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