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


Cushman is an ancient Norman name, that would have been used in Britain soon after the Conquest of the island in 1066. This name was given to a person who was a person who was related to someone of note in the area. Further research showed the name was derived from the Old French, cusin, and the Old English, cousin, which means relative.

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The surname Cushman was first found in Norfolk and in the southern counties of England, where the first on record appears to be Roger Cusin, listed in the Pipe Rolls in that county in 1166. Robert Cusyn and his wife Joan were landowners in Ellisfield, Hampshire during the Reign of Henry III (1216-1272). Peter Cusin was a sheriff of London in 1273. A Galfridus Cusyn of Hardingham, Norfolk is mentioned in the Subsidy Rolls for that county in 1327.

Anglo-Norman names tend to be marked by an enormous number of spelling variations. This is largely due to the fact that Old and Middle English lacked any spelling rules when Norman French was introduced in the 11th century. The languages of the English courts at that time were French and Latin. These various languages mixed quite freely in the evolving social milieu. The final element of this mix is that medieval scribes spelled words according to their sounds rather than any definite rules, so a name was often spelled in as many different ways as the number of documents it appeared in. The name was spelled Cousin, Cousins, Cozens, Cossins, Couzins, Cossens, Cosin, Cosyns, Cousens, Couzens, Cossins, Cosin and many more.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Cushman research. Another 101 words (7 lines of text) covering the years 1066, 1558, 1558, 1594, 1672, 1697 and 1743 are included under the topic Early Cushman History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Another 71 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Cushman Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Some of the Cushman family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 125 words (9 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Because of the political and religious discontent in England, families began to migrate abroad in enormous numbers. Faced with persecution and starvation at home, the open frontiers and generally less oppressive social environment of the New World seemed tantalizing indeed to many English people. The trip was difficult, and not all made it unscathed, but many of those who did get to Canada and the United States made important contributions to the young nations in which they settled. Some of the first North American settlers with Cushman name or one of its variants:

Cushman Settlers in United States in the 17th Century


  • Robert (Cutchman) Cushman (15781625), English servant and later settler from Rolvenden, Kent who settled at the Plymouth Colony to become Chief Agent for the Separatist Leiden contingent (1617-1625)
  • Mary Allerton Cushman, who arrived in Plymouth, Massachusetts in 1620
  • Robert Cushman, who landed in America in 1620
  • Thomas Cushman, who arrived in Plymouth, Massachusetts in 1621
  • James Cushman, who landed in New England in 1633

Cushman Settlers in United States in the 19th Century


  • J J Cushman, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1850
  • Mr. Cushman, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1850
  • Mrs. C D Cushman, who landed in San Francisco, California in 1851
  • G Cushman, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1851
  • J Cushman, who landed in San Francisco, California in 1851


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  • Karen Cushman (b. 1941), American writer of historical fiction, winner of the Newbery Medal for her 1995 novel The Midwife's Apprentice
  • Joseph Augustine Cushman (1881-1949), American geologist, paleontologist and foraminiferologist from Bridgewater, Massachusetts
  • Jeremy Stein Cushman (b. 1990), American violinist and violist
  • Everett Cushman, American co-founder of Cushman, a manufacturer of industrial vehicles, personal vehicles, and other custom vehicles in 1903
  • Clifton Emmett "Cliff" Cushman (1938-1966), American silver medalist athlete at the 1960 Summer Olympics
  • General Robert Everton Cushman Jr. (1914-1985), the 25th Commandant of the Marine Corps,Deputy Director of the CIA (1969-1971)
  • Charlotte Saunders Cushman (1816-1876), American actress


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  • Pilgrims of the Fruitbelt: A Cushman Genealogy by Martelle L. Cushman.
  • Farewell to Youth: The Diary of Margery Cushman by Margery Cushman.
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  1. Foster, Joseph. Dictionary of Heraldry Feudal Coats of Arms and Pedigrees. London: Bracken Books, 1989. Print. (ISBN 1-85170-309-8).
  2. Markale, J. Celtic Civilization. London: Gordon & Cremonesi, 1976. Print.
  3. Egle, William Henry. Pennsylvania Genealogies Scotch-Irish and German. Harrisburg: L.S. Hart, 1886. Print.
  4. Zieber, Eugene. Heraldry in America. Philadelphia: Genealogical Publishing Co. Print.
  5. Burke, Sir Bernard. Burke's Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Landed Gentry: Including American Families with British Ancestry. (2 Volumes). London: Burke Publishing, 1939. Print.
  6. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  7. Magnusson, Magnus. Chambers Biographical Dictionary 5th edition. Edinburgh: W & R Chambers, 1990. Print.
  8. Ingram, Rev. James. Translator Anglo-Saxon Chronicle 1823. Print.
  9. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  10. Reaney P.H and R.M. Wilson. A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X).
  11. ...

The Cushman Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Cushman 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 8 June 2015 at 09:48.

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