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Origins Available: Borderlands, English, Irish


The earliest origins of the name Adams date back to the time of the Anglo-Saxons. The name is derived from the given name Adam, which is itself derived from the Latin name Adamus which means earth.

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The surname Adams was first found in Annandale where they held a family seat at Kynemund.

Until quite recently, the English language has lacked a definite system of spelling rules. Consequently, Anglo-Saxon surnames are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations. Changes in Anglo-Saxon names were influenced by the evolution of the English language, as it incorporated elements of French, Latin, and other languages. Although Medieval scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded, so it is common to find one person referred to by several different spellings of his surname, even the most literate people varied the spelling of their own names. Variations of the name Adams include Adam, Adams, MacAdam, MacAdams, MacCaw and others.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Adams research. Another 371 words (26 lines of text) covering the years 1189, 1329, 1460, 1281, 1327, 1891, 1585, 1661, 1656, 1586, 1667, 1654, 1655, 1656, 1658, 1626, 1698, 1651, 1719, 1685, 1719, 1695, 1697, 1689, 1748, 1662, 1720, 1712, 1720 and are included under the topic Early Adams History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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Notable amongst bearers of this family name during their early history was William Adams (1585-1661), London Haberdasher born in Newport, Shropshire, who founded Adams' Grammar School in 1656; Sir Thomas Adams, 1st Baronet (1586-1667), Lord Mayor of the City of London and a Member of Parliament for the City of London...

Another 57 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Adams Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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Some of the Adams family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 201 words (14 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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Searching for a better life, many English families migrated to British colonies. Unfortunately, the majority of them traveled 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 ocean. For those families that arrived safely, modest prosperity was attainable, and many went on to make invaluable contributions to the development of the cultures of the new colonies. Research into the origins of individual families in North America revealed records of the immigration of a number of people bearing the name Adams or a variant listed above:

Adams Settlers in United States in the 17th Century

  • Captain Adams, who landed in Virginia in 1609
  • Charles Adams, who landed in Baltimore, Maryland in 1611
  • Mr. Adams, who arrived in Virginia in 1623
  • Mr. Adams, who arrived in Jamestown, Va in 1624
  • Robert Adams, who arrived in Virginia in 1624
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Adams Settlers in United States in the 18th Century

  • Robert Adams, who landed in Pennsylvania in 1700
  • Robert Adams, who arrived in Virginia in 1702
  • Anne Adams, who landed in Virginia in 1705
  • Anne Adams, who arrived in Virginia in 1706
  • Francis Adams, who arrived in Maryland in 1707
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Adams Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • Thomas Adams, who landed in America in 1802
  • Charles Adams, aged 48, arrived in Charlestown, Massachusetts in 1803
  • Archebald Adams, aged 12, arrived in New York, NY in 1804
  • Elizabeth Adams, aged 8, landed in New York, NY in 1804
  • John Adams, aged 15, landed in New York, NY in 1804
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Adams Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century

  • John Adams was a planter of St. John's, Newfoundland, in 1703
  • Charles Adams, who arrived in Halifax, Nova Scotia in 1778
  • Mr. Andrew Adams U.E., United Empire Loyalist who settled in Edwardsburgh [Township of Edwardsburgh/Cardinal], Ontario c. 1783 he served as part of the King's Rangers Regiment
  • Mr. Elijah Curtis Adams U.E., United Empire Loyalist who settled in Eastern District, Upper Canada c. 1783
  • Mr. Erray Adams U.E., United Empire Loyalist who settled in Eastern District, Upper Canada c. 1783
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Adams Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century

  • Cpt. Samuel Adams U.E. (b. 1730) born in Stratford, Connecticut, USA, United Empire Loyalist from Arlington, Vermont, USA who settled in Eastern District, Montreal, then Lot 7, Concession II, Oxford Township, near Johnstown in 1805 , he served under General Burgoyne, he died in 1810 and is buried in North Channel Cemetery, Township of Edwardsburgh/Cardinal, Leeds and Grenville, Ontario
  • Daniel Adams, who landed in Canada in 1830
  • George Adams, aged 19, a gentleman, arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick in 1833 aboard the barque "Pallas" from Cork, Ireland
  • Maria Adams, aged 25, arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick in 1833 aboard the brig "Dorcas Savage" from Belfast, Ireland
  • Robert Adams, aged 23, a labourer, arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick in 1833 aboard the brig "Silestria" from Belfast, Ireland
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Adams Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century

  • William Adams, English convict from Middlesex, who was transported aboard the "Asia" on September 3rd, 1820, settling in New South Wales, Austraila
  • James Adams, English convict from Norfolk, who was transported aboard the "Asia" on April 1st, 1822, settling in New South Wales, Austraila
  • John Adams, English convict from Sussex, who was transported aboard the "Arab" on July 3, 1822, settling in Van Diemen's Land, Austraila
  • Thomas Adams, English convict from Nottingham, who was transported aboard the "Asia" on July 29th, 1823, settling in Van Diemen's Land, Australia
  • John Adams, English convict from London, who was transported aboard the "Asia" on October 22nd, 1824, settling in New South Wales, Australia
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Adams Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century

  • John Adams landed in Wellington, New Zealand in 1840
  • Alex Percy Adams landed in Wellington, New Zealand in 1840
  • H H Adams landed in Auckland, New Zealand in 1843
  • Henry Adams, aged 21, arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Westminster" in 1843
  • S A Adams landed in Wellington, New Zealand in 1844
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  • President John Quincy Adams (1767-1848), American politician, 6th President of the United States (1825-1829)
  • Julius Adams (1948-2016), American NFL defensive lineman for the New England Patriots (1971-1987), father of former NFL player, Keith Adams
  • Arlin Marvin Adams (1921-2015), American jurist, Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit (1969-1987)
  • Alvin Philip Adams Jr. (1942-2015), American diplomat, Ambassador to Haiti, Djibuti and Peru
  • Sam Edwards Adams Sr. (1948-2015), American NFL football offensive guard who played from 1972 to 1981
  • Samuel Adams (1722-1803), American statesman and brewer who led the Boston Tea Party
  • Floyd Adams Jr. (1945-2014), American politician from Georgia, Mayor of Savannah, Georgia from 1996-2003
  • Jay Adams (1961-2014), American skateboarder, one of the original members of Z-Boys skateboarding team
  • Platt Adams (1885-1961), American winner of a gold and sliver Olympic medals for high and long jump at 1912 games
  • Edgar Adams, American Olympic sliver medalist for swimming at the 1904 Summer Games
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Adams Historic Events



Flight 191

  • K Adams, American passenger from Los Angeles, California, USA, who flew aboard American Airlines Flight 191 and died in the crash on May 25, 1979

HMS Hood

  • Mr. Nigel N Adams (b. 1923), English Midshipman serving for the Royal Navy Reserve from Crownhill, Plymouth, England, who sailed into battle on the HMS Hood and died on 24th May 1941 in the sinking
  • Mr. Frank P Adams (b. 1918), English Musician serving for the Royal Marine Band from Gillingham, Kent, England, who sailed into battle on the HMS Hood and died on 24th May 1941 in the sinking
  • Mr. Victor H Adams (b. 1916), English Leading Stoker serving for the Royal Navy from Eastney, Portsmouth, England, who sailed into battle on the HMS Hood and died on 24th May 1941 in the sinking
  • Mr. Victor E Adams (b. 1917), English Ordinary Seaman serving for the Royal Navy from Milton, Portsmouth, England, who sailed into battle on the HMS Hood and died on 24th May 1941 in the sinking
  • Mr. Keith H Adams (b. 1923), English Corporal serving for the Royal Marine from Alverstoke, Gosport, England, who sailed into battle on the HMS Hood and died on 24th May 1941 in the sinking

HMS Prince of Wales

  • Mr. Francis Herbert Robert Adams, British Writer, who sailed in to battle on the HMS Prince of Wales and died during the sinking

RMS Lusitania

  • Mrs. Gertrude Adams, (née Pollett), English 2nd Class passenger residing in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada returning to Bath, England, who sailed aboard the RMS Lusitania and survived the sinking
  • Miss Joan M. Adams, English 2nd Class passenger residing in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada returning to Bath, England, who sailed aboard the RMS Lusitania and died in the sinking
  • Mr. Allan H. Adams, Canadian 2nd Class passenger from Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, who sailed aboard the RMS Lusitania and survived the sinking
  • Mr. Arthur Henry Adams, French 1st Class Passenger residing in London, England, who sailed aboard the RMS Lusitania and died in the sinking by escaping in life boat 17
  • Mr. Henry Adams, Welsh 1st Class Passenger originating in Boston, Massachusetts, USA returning to Tenby, Pembrokshire, Wales, who sailed aboard the RMS Lusitania and died in the sinking and was recovered
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RMS Titanic

  • Mr. Robert John Adams (d. 1912), aged 26, English Fireman/Stoker from Southampton, Hampshire who worked aboard the RMS Titanic and died in the sinking
  • Mr. John Adams (1878-1912), aged 26, English Third Class passenger from Bournemouth, Dorset who sailed aboard the RMS Titanic and died in the sinking and was recovered by CS Mackay-Bennett
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  • Adams Family Records: A Genealogical and Biographical History of All Branches of the Adams Family by J. T. Adams.
  • Adams, an American Dynasty by Francis Russell.
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Citations



    Other References

    1. Bolton, Charles Knowles. Bolton's American Armory. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1964. Print.
    2. Ingram, Rev. James. Translator Anglo-Saxon Chronicle 1823. Print.
    3. Browning, Charles H. Americans of Royal Descent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
    4. MacAulay, Thomas Babington. History of England from the Accession of James the Second 4 volumes. New York: Harper and Brothers, 1879. Print.
    5. Foster, Joseph. Dictionary of Heraldry Feudal Coats of Arms and Pedigrees. London: Bracken Books, 1989. Print. (ISBN 1-85170-309-8).
    6. Crispin, M. Jackson and Leonce Mary. Falaise Roll Recording Prominent Companions of William Duke of Normandy at the Conquest of England. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
    7. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
    8. Papworth, J.W and A.W Morant. Ordinary of British Armorials. London: T.Richards, 1874. Print.
    9. The Norman People and Their Existing Descendants in the British Dominions and the United States Of America. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0636-X).
    10. Chadwick, Nora Kershaw and J.X.W.P Corcoran. The Celts. London: Penguin, 1790. Print. (ISBN 0140212116).
    11. ...

    The Adams Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Adams 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 10 July 2016 at 15:12.

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