Driver History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms 

The name Driver came to England with the ancestors of the Driver family in the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Driver family lived in Cheshire. This family was originally from De Rivers in Normandy, and it is from this location that their surname derives. There were numerous places bearing this name in Normandy, and consequently the name is also very common in England.

Early Origins of the Driver family

The surname Driver was first found in Cheshire 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.

Important Dates for the Driver family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Driver research. Another 61 words (4 lines of text) covering the years 1279 and 1332 are included under the topic Early Driver History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Driver Spelling Variations

Multitudes of spelling variations are a hallmark of Anglo Norman names. Most of these names evolved in the 11th and 12th century, in the time after the Normans introduced their own Norman French language into a country where Old and Middle English had no spelling rules and the languages of the court were French and Latin. To make matters worse, medieval scribes spelled words according to sound, so names frequently appeared differently in the various documents in which they were recorded. The name was spelled Driver, Dryver and others.

Early Notables of the Driver family (pre 1700)

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

Driver migration to the United States

Because of this political and religious unrest within English society, many people decided to immigrate to the colonies. Families left for Ireland, North America, and Australia in enormous numbers, traveling at high cost in extremely inhospitable conditions. The New World in particular was a desirable destination, but the long voyage caused many to arrive sick and starving. Those who made it, though, were welcomed by opportunities far greater than they had known at home in England. Many of these families went on to make important contributions to the emerging nations of Canada and the United States. Analysis of immigration records indicates that some of the first North American immigrants bore the name Driver or a variant listed above:

Driver Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Robert Driver, who arrived in Lynn, Massachusetts in 1630 [1]
  • Rob't Driver, aged 8, who landed in New England in 1635 [1]
  • Robert Driver, aged 8, who arrived in America in 1635 [1]
  • James Driver, aged 27, who arrived in Barbados in 1635 [1]
  • James Driver who settled in Barbados in 1635 with his wife Jane, along with sons Robert and Thomas
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Driver Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Charles Driver, who landed in Virginia in 1701 [1]
  • Edward Driver, who settled in Maryland in 1774
  • Thomas Driver, who settled in Georgia in 1774
Driver Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Isabella Driver, who landed in New York, NY in 1844 [1]
  • Eduard Driver, who arrived in Texas in 1846 [1]
  • Mr. Driver, who landed in San Francisco, California in 1850 [1]
  • William Driver, who landed in Washington County, Pennsylvania in 1854 [1]

Driver migration to Canada

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Driver Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century
  • John Driver, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1749

Driver migration to Australia

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

Driver Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • John Driver, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "David Malcolm" in 1848 [2]
  • Frederick Driver, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Samuel Boddington" in 1851 [3]
  • Thomas Driver, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Samuel Boddington" in 1851 [3]
  • Peter Driver, English Convict from Yorkshire, who was transported aboard the "Aboukir" on December 24, 1851, settling in Van Diemen's Land, Australia [4]
  • John Driver, aged 30, a labourer, who arrived in South Australia in 1851 aboard the ship "Thetis" [5]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Driver 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:

Driver Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Mr. Archibald Driver, British settler travelling from London via Cobh aboard the ship "Sir George Pollock" arriving in Auckland, New Zealand on 5th September 1859 [6]
  • Thomas Driver, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Nimroud" in 1863
  • Mr. Driver, American settler travelling from Honolulu aboard the ship "Nebraska" arriving in Port Chalmers, Dunedin, Otago, South Island, New Zealand on 16th November 1872 [7]
  • Mr. Samuel Driver, (b. 1853), aged 21, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "Dorette" arriving in Auckland, New Zealand on 14th April 1874 [7]
  • William Driver, aged 31, a chairmaker, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Arethusa" in 1879
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Contemporary Notables of the name Driver (post 1700)

  • William Driver (1803-1886), American ship's captain, best known for coining the phrase "Old Glory" for the U.S. flag
  • Phyllis Driver (b. 1917), birth name of Phyllis Diller, American actress and comedienne
  • Amelia F Iona J. "Minnie" Driver (b. 1970), English Academy Award, Emmy Award and a Golden Globe nominated actress and singer-songwriter [8]
  • Ryan Driver (b. 1979), English cricketer
  • Samuel Rolles Driver (1846-1914), English Old Testament scholar
  • Sir Godfrey Rolles Driver (1892-1975), English biblical scholar
  • Mr. Michael Brian Driver C.B.,, British Chief Financial Officer for Ministry of Justice and Head of Government Finance for the HM Treasury, was appointed Companion of the Order of Bath on 8th June 2018, for public service [9]
  • Richard Driver (1829-1880), Australian solicitor, politician and cricket administrator
  • Charles Henry Driver (1832-1900), British architect
  • Marcus Driver O'Day (1897-1961), American physicist, eponym of the O'Day lunar crater

Historic Events for the Driver family

USS Arizona
  • Mr. Bill Lester Driver, American Radioman Third Class from California, USA working aboard the ship "USS Arizona" when she sunk during the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on 7th December 1941, he died in the sinking [10]

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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. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) DAVID MALCOLM - EMIGRANT SHIP - 1848. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1848DavidMalcolm.htm
  3. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) SAMUEL BODDINGTON 1851. Retrieved http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1851SamuelBoddington.gif
  4. ^ State Library of Queensland. (Retrieved 2014, November 18) Aboukir voyage to Van Diemen's Land and Norfolk Island. [These convicts appear to have all landed in Van Diemen's Land], Australia in 1851 with 280 passengers. Retrieved from http://www.convictrecords.com.au/ships/aboukir/1851
  5. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) THETIS 1851. Retrieved http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1851Thetis.htm
  6. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 26th March 2019). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html
  7. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 17th October 2018). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html
  8. ^ Amelia Driver. (Retrieved 2012, September 3) Amelia Driver. Retrieved from http://www.minniedriver.com/
  9. ^ "Birthday and New Year Honours Lists (1940 to 2019)." Issue 62310, 4 July 2019 | London Gazette, The Gazette, June 2018, https://www.thegazette.co.uk/London/issue/62310/supplement/B1
  10. ^ Pearl Harbour: USS Arizona Casualties List Pearl Harbour December 7, 1941. (Retrieved 2018, July 31st). Retrieved from http://pearl-harbor.com/arizona/casualtylist.html
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