Feres History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
The name Feres was brought to England in the great wave of migration following the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Feres family lived in Staffordshire. The name, however, derives from the family's place of residence prior to the Norman Conquest of England in 1066, Ferriers, in Gastonois, Normandy. Specifically, the place name comes from "ferrière," which refers to an "iron works." "Many of the coats-armours assigned to the name contain horse-shoes, and at Oakham in Rutlandshire, an ancient barony of the family, a custom prevails to this day of demanding a horse-shoe of every peer of the realm who passes through the town."  Another source clarifies that it was Walkelin de Ferrers who started this tradition shortly after he settled there after the Norman Conquest. 
Early Origins of the Feres family
The surname Feres was first found in Staffordshire, where Henry de Fereres of Ferriers-St. Hilaire, Lord of Longueville, Normandy was on record in the Domesday Book of 1086; his castle was at Tutbury, Staffordshire; he had large holdings in Derbyshire, as well as lands in 14 other counties. Other early records include a Henry le Ferrur on record in 1196 in the Curia Regis Rolls for that same county.
"Henry de Ferrers, who accompanied Duke William to England, was son of Walchelin, a Norman knight, and assumed the surname he bore from Ferriers, a small town of Gastinois, celebrated for its iron mines. Hence, too, originated the 'six horse shoes,' the armorial ensigns of the House of Ferrers, allusive to the seigneuris's staple commodity, so essential to the soldier and cavalier in those rude times when war was esteemed the chief business of life, and the adroit management of the steed, even amongst the nobility, the first of accomplishments. The name of Henry de Ferrers occurs in Domesday Book, and from that record he appears to have had vast possessions." 
Said to be descendents of Henry de Feriers, the Norman Ferrers family held the earldom of Derby from 1138-1266 and "held 210 lordships in fourteen counties of England, besides the castle and borough of Tutbury, in Staffordshire, the principle seat of the earldom." 
However, not all the lordships and manors stayed with the family. "The manor [of Uttoxeter in Staffordshire] was granted by the Conqueror to Henry de Ferrers, Earl of Derby; and was forfeited to the crown, together with the other large estates of that family, by Earl Robert, in the reign of Henry III., and given to Edmund, Earl of Lancaster, the king's second son." 
And another example of the family losing an estate: "In the 36th of Henry III. the manor [of Wavertree in Lancashire] was granted to William de Ferrers, Earl of Derby, from whom it reverted to the crown." 
And yet another branch of the family were well established at Wirksworth in Derbyshire in ancient times. "In the Domesday book, Wirksworth is described as the property of the king, having a church, a priest, and three leadmines; and it remained in the crown until King John, in the fifth year of his reign, granted it to William de Ferrers, in whose family it continued till the attainder of his descendant, Robert, in the time of Henry III. By this monarch it was given in 1265 to his son, Edmund, Earl of Lancaster, and the manor has since that period constituted a part of the possessions of the duchy of Lancaster." 
Early History of the Feres family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Feres research. Another 248 words (18 lines of text) covering the years 1062, 1139, 1138, 1190, 1239, 1279, 1300, 1373, 1445, 1271, 1325, 1299, 1271, 1325, 1423, 1548, 1899, 1138, 1279, 1299, 1325, 1300, 1445, 1358, 1413, 1367, 1412, 1399, 1462, 1629, 1680 and 1660 are included under the topic Early Feres History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Feres Spelling Variations
Norman surnames are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations. The frequent changes in surnames are largely due to the fact that the Old and Middle English languages lacked definite spelling rules. The introduction of Norman French to England, as well as the official court languages of Latin and French, also had pronounced influences on the spelling of surnames. Since medieval scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded, rather than adhering to any specific spelling rules, it was common to find the same individual referred to with different spellings. The name has been spelled Ferrer, Ferrers, Ferers, Feres, Ferris, Ferres, Ferries, Ferras, Farris, Farriss, Faries, de Ferrers, Ferriers and many more.
Early Notables of the Feres family (pre 1700)
Outstanding amongst the family at this time was the ennobled families Ferrers, Earls of Derby (1138-1279); Baron Ferrers of Chartley (1299-1325); Lord Ferrers of Groby (1300-1445); Robert de Ferrers, 4th Baron Ferrers of Chartley (1358-1413), inherited the title of Baron Ferrers of Chartley upon his father's death at the Battle of Nájera in 1367 but was...
Another 55 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Feres Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Feres family to Ireland
Some of the Feres family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 68 words (5 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Feres family
Many English families emigrated to North American colonies in order to escape the political chaos in Britain at this time. Unfortunately, many English families made the trip to the New World 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 stormy Atlantic. Despite these hardships, many of the families prospered and went on to make invaluable contributions to the development of the cultures of the United States and Canada. Early North American immigration records have revealed a number of people bearing the name Feres or a variant listed above: Henry Ferrers, who arrived in Jamaica in 1675; John Ferrers, who was naturalized in New York in 1797; George Ferrer, who arrived in Maryland in 1774; Anne Ferrers, who arrived in Philadelphia in 1804.
Related Stories +
The Feres Motto +
The motto was originally a war cry or slogan. Mottoes first began to be shown with arms in the 14th and 15th centuries, but were not in general use until the 17th century. Thus the oldest coats of arms generally do not include a motto. Mottoes seldom form part of the grant of arms: Under most heraldic authorities, a motto is an optional component of the coat of arms, and can be added to or changed at will; many families have chosen not to display a motto.
Motto: Splendio tritus
Motto Translation: I shine though worn.
- ^ Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
- ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
- ^ Burke, John Bernard, The Roll of Battle Abbey. London: Edward Churton, 26, Holles Street, 1848, Print.
- ^ Shirley, Evelyn Philip, The Noble and Gentle Men of England; The Arms and Descents. Westminster: John Bower Nichols and Sons, 1866, Print.