Show ContentsForney History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The name Forney has a long French heritage that first began in southern region of Languedoc. The name is derived from when the family lived in Languedoc.

Early Origins of the Forney family

The surname Forney was first found in Languedoc, where the family held a family seat since ancient times.

Early History of the Forney family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Forney research. Another 470 words (34 lines of text) covering the years 1271, 1317, 1342, 1452, 1533, 1624, 1578, 1650, 1652, 1709, 1820, 1830, 1575, 1630, 1713, 1712, 1768 and 1525 are included under the topic Early Forney History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Forney Spelling Variations

The many different spellings of French surnames can be partially explained by the use of local dialects and by the influence of other languages during the early development of the French language. As a result of these linguistic and cultural influences, the name Forney is distinguished by a number of regional variations. The many spelling variations of the name include Fornier, Forniest, Forniez, Forniée, Fournier, Fournié, de Fournier, Fourney, de Fornier, Forner and many more.

Early Notables of the Forney family (pre 1700)

Notable amongst the family name at this time was Jean-François-Gaspard, Viscount Fornier of Clauzelles, Councillor General of Ariège, Deputy of Ariège and a Knight of the Legion of Honour. Honoré Caille, seigneur du Fourny (1630-1713) was a French genealogist. Pierre Simon Fournier, engraver and type-founder, born in Paris Sept. 15, 1712, died there Oct. 8, 1768. He greatly...
Another 57 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Forney Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Forney Ranking

In the United States, the name Forney is the 4,115th most popular surname with an estimated 7,461 people with that name. [1]

United States Forney migration to the United States +

French settlers came early to North American, following in the wake of the explorers, and creating New France. Quebec City, founded in 1608 by Samuel de Champlain is said to have been the first American site founded as a permanent settlement, rather than as just a commercial outpost. But emigration was slow, in 1643, 109 years after the first landings by Cartier, there were only about 300 French people in Quebec, and by 1663, when the region was officially made The Royal Colony of New France, by Louis XIV, there still only around 500 settlers. Over 2,000 would arrive during the next decade. Early marriage was desperately encouraged amongst the immigrants. Youths of 18 took fourteen-year-old girls for their wives. The fur trade was developed and attracted immigrants, both noble and commoner from France. By 1675, there were around 7000 French in the colony, and by that same year the Acadian presence in Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island had reached 500. In 1755, 10,000 French Acadians refused to take an oath of allegiance to England and were deported to Louisiana. Despite the loss of the Colony to England, the French people flourished in Lower Canada. Among settlers to North America of the Forney surname were

Forney Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Abraham Forney, aged 64, who landed in Pennsylvania in 1734 [2]
  • Peter Forney, who arrived in Pennsylvania in 1734 [2]
  • Christian Forney, who landed in Pennsylvania in 1734 [2]
  • Jacob Forney, who arrived in North Carolina in 1739 [2]
  • John Adam Forney, who landed in Pennsylvania in 1747 [2]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Forney Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Thomas J Forney, aged 30, who landed in Key West, Fla in 1844 [2]

Contemporary Notables of the name Forney (post 1700) +

  • John Weiss Forney (1817-1881), American journalist and politician, Clerk of the United States House of Representatives (1851-1856), Secretary of the United States Senate (1861-1868)
  • William Henry Forney (1823-1894), American politician, Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Alabama (1875-1893)
  • Peter Forney (1756-1834), American politician, U.S. Representative from North Carolina
  • Kynan Lerrol Forney (b. 1978), American NFL football player who has payed since 2001
  • Brigadier General James Forney (1844-1921), American officer serving in the United States Marine Corps during the American Civil War; he was approved to receive the Marine Corps Brevet Medal for bravery but died before receiving it
  • Ellen Forney (b. 1968), American Eisner Award nominated cartoonist and teacher
  • Matthias N. Forney (1835-1908), American steam locomotive manufacturer, designer of the Forney type locomotive that served the elevated railroads of New York City for many years before converting to electric power
  • John Horace Forney (1829-1902), American Major General in the Confederate States Army during the American Civil War
  • A Clark Forney (1871-1956), American politician, the 14th Lieutenant Governor of South Dakota from 1925-1927
  • George David Forney Jr. (b. 1940), American electrical engineer, recipient of the IEEE Edison Medal in 1992
  • ... (Another 11 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

  1. "What are the 5,000 Most Common Last Names in the U.S.?".,
  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) on Facebook