Farris History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The west coast of Scotland and the rocky Hebrides islands are the ancient home of the Farris family. The root of their name is the Scottish surname MacFergus, which means "son of Fergus", which is in turn derived from the Gaelic personal name "Fearghus," composed of the elements "fear," meaning "man," and "gus," meaning "vigor" or "force." This Gaelic name was found early in both Ireland and Scotland. The name is a cognate of with the Cymric "Gwr-gwst," Old Bret. "Urorgost" and the Pictish word "Forcus." This last Pictish form of the name is found on a monument at St. Vigeans in Angus as "Fercos."

Fergus I ( fl. 330 B.C.?), "son of Ferchard, was the first king of Scotland, according to the fictitious chronology of Boece and Buchanan, is said to have come to Scotland from Ireland about 330 B.C. to assist the Scots already settled in Scotland against the joint attack of the Picts and Britons. After succeeding in this he is further said to have gone back to Ireland to quell disturbances which had arisen in his absence, and to have been drowned in the passage off the rock or port which got the name of Carrick Fergus from him. " [1]

Early Origins of the Farris family

The surname Farris was first found in Galloway (Gaelic: Gall-ghaidhealaibh), an area of southwestern Scotland, now part of the Council Area of Dumfries and Galloway, that formerly consisted of the counties of Wigtown (West Galloway) and Kirkcudbright (East Galloway), Ireland where St. Fergus (Fergustian) (circa 730 AD) was an Irish bishop, who went to Scotland as a missionary.

He settled near Strageath and founded three churches in Strogeth and two in Caithness. It is possible that he was the Fergustus Pictus who went to Rome in 721 AD. According to Irish lore, a family of this name descend from Fergus, Prince of Galloway (d. 1161), who is said to have married a daughter of Henry I of England.

Constantine Mac Fergus (d. 820), was King of the Picts, he "acquired the monarchy by the defeat of Conall Mac Taidg (Teige), who was assassinated in 807 by another Conall, son of Aidan, a Dalriad king in Kintyre. " [1]

Early History of the Farris family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Farris research. Another 148 words (11 lines of text) covering the years 1300, 1466, 1499, 1582 and are included under the topic Early Farris History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Farris Spelling Variations

Spelling and translation were not standardized practices until the last few centuries. Spelling variations are extremely common among early Scottish names. Farris has been spelled Fergus, Fergie, Forgie, Forgus, Ferris, Farris and many more.

Early Notables of the Farris family (pre 1700)

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

Ireland Migration of the Farris family to Ireland

Some of the Farris family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 70 words (5 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Farris migration to the United States +

Numerous Scottish settlers settled along the east coast of the colonies that would become the United States and Canada. Others traveled to the open country of the west. At the time of the American War of Independence, some remained in the United States, while those who remained loyal to the crown went north to Canada as United Empire Loyalists. The highland games and Clan societies that sprang up across North America in the 20th century have helped many Scots to recover parts of their lost traditions. Research into passenger and immigration lists has revealed some of the very first Farriss to arrive in North America:

Farris Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Ellen Farris, who landed in New York, NY in 1815 [2]
  • Robert Farris, who landed in New York, NY in 1815 [2]
  • Daniel Farris, who landed in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1841 [2]
  • John Farris, who arrived in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1844 [2]
  • Manuel Farris, aged 40, who arrived in New Orleans, La in 1848 [2]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Farris Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • Mike Farris, who arrived in Arkansas in 1901 [2]
  • M G Farris, who landed in Mississippi in 1904 [2]

New Zealand Farris 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:

Farris Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Alfred William Farris, aged 21, a carpenter, who arrived in Otago aboard the ship "Dallam Tower" in 1875
  • George Henry Farris, aged 23, a carpenter, who arrived in Otago aboard the ship "Dallam Tower" in 1875

Contemporary Notables of the name Farris (post 1700) +

  • Major General Jack K. Farris (b. 1934), United States Air Force officer, recipient of the Distinguished Flying Cross, the Purple Heart, and the Meritorious Service Medal
  • Vera King Farris (1938-2009), the first African-American president of a New Jersey public college
  • Thomas George Farris (1920-2002), American NFL football quarterback
  • Amy Farris (1968-2009), American fiddler, singer and songwriter
  • Darren Farris (b. 1972), American singer-songwriter
  • Dionne Farris (b. 1969), American R&B/soul musician
  • Charles J. Farris, American Democrat politician, Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Illinois, 1940 [3]
  • Anthony J. P. Farris, American Republican politician, Candidate for U.S. Representative from Texas 8th District, 1960, 1962; U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Texas, 1969-74 [3]
  • Anna Farris, American Democrat politician, Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Arkansas, 2004 [3]
  • Andrew Paul Farris (b. 1957), American Libertarian politician, Candidate for U.S. Representative from Texas 11th District, 2002 [3]
  • ... (Another 22 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Halifax Explosion
  • Mr. Joseph  Farris (1892-1917), Canadian resident from Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada who died in the explosion [4]


Suggested Readings for the name Farris +

  • 1044 The Family of John Martin and Margaret Faris (also Farris) of Spartanburg County, South Carolina by Judy L. Harvey, The Faris Family of Washington County, Indiana: A Genealogy of the Descendants of William Farrie Born in County Antrim, Ireland, About the Year 1745, Settled on Rocky Creek, Chester County, South Carolina in 1772 by David Faris.

  1. ^ Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print
  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. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, November 25) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html
  4. ^ Halifax Explosion Book of Remembrance | Maritime Museum of the Atlantic. (Retrieved 2014, June 23) . Retrieved from https://maritimemuseum.novascotia.ca/what-see-do/halifax-explosion/halifax-explosion-book-remembrance


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