Fermour History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Fermour is one of the many names that the Normans brought with them when they conquered England in 1066. Fermour is a name for a tax farmer. A tax farmer was one who undertook the collection of taxes, tariffs, and such for a fixed sum. [1] The name only refers secondarily to its more literal and obvious connotations of one who worked as a farmer in the modern sense of the word, managing an area of land and growing produce and livestock.

In England, the surname has the expected origin: "a cultivator of the ground" [2] or "one who cultivated a farm." [3]

Early Origins of the Fermour family

The surname Fermour was first found in various counties and shires throughout ancient Britain. To confuse matters, early rolls added the occupation to some entries, thus making research difficult. By example, one of the earliest records was: Robertus Friston, farmer de Parsonage in 1372. The Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls of 1379 had numerous such entries: Ricardus de Wenteworth, firmarius unius Grauuge; Johannes del Grange, fermour del Grange; and so on. [3]

However, in Scotland records are clearer: "Richard Femiarius was juror on inquest at Peebles, 1262; Alan Fermour witnessed instrument signed at St. Andrews, 1391; the land of Andrew Fermour in Perth is mentioned, 1458; and in the following year William Fermore, presbyter, is in record." [1] This clarity may be as a result of the different meaning of the surname there.

Early History of the Fermour family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Fermour research. Another 150 words (11 lines of text) covering the years 1250, 1250, 1458, 1619, 1553, 1586, 1480, 1551, 1623, 1661, 1648, 1711, 1623, 1661, 1603, 1640 and 1066 are included under the topic Early Fermour History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Fermour 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 Farmer, Farmere, Farmers, Fermare and others.

Early Notables of the Fermour family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Sir John Fermor of Easton Neston, Northampton, who was ennobled in 1553, in the presence of Queen Mary. His son, Sir George Farmer, was made a Knight in 1586 in the reign of Queen Elizabeth I. Richard Fermor (1480-1551), was an English wool merchant; and his grandson Sir Hatton Fermor, inherited the estates at Easton Neston, Northamptonshire. His son, Sir William Fermor, 1st Baronet (1623?-1661), was an English officer in the Royalist army during the English Civil...
Another 85 words (6 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Fermour Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Fermour family to Ireland

Some of the Fermour family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 54 words (4 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 Fermour family

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 Fermour or a variant listed above: Charles Farmer, who arrived in Virginia in 1623; Alice Farmer, who arrived in Virginia in 1662; Row Farmar, who came to Virginia in 1677; Berrebe Farmer, who was on record in Virginia in 1692.



  1. ^ Black, George F., The Surnames of Scotland Their Origin, Meaning and History. New York: New York Public Library, 1946. Print. (ISBN 0-87104-172-3)
  2. ^ Sims, Clifford Stanley The Origin and Signification of Scottish Surnames. 1862. Print.
  3. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)


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