Gaw History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The name Gaw comes from the ancient Norman culture that was established in Britain after the Conquest of 1066. It was a name for a person with a fancied resemblance to the wild boar. The name derives fom the Old Norse word goltr, which means boar. The boar, a hairy tusked animal similar to a pig, was once quite populous in England, but now remains only on continental Europe. Hunting boar was a favorite sport during the Middle Ages, and the sport contributed to its extinction in the British Isles.

Early Origins of the Gaw family

The surname Gaw was first found in Perthshire where they held a family seat from very early times. Gall was the name given to strangers, as in the Lowland Galt, but the name probably came from France. Conjecturally they moved north to Scotland with King David of Scotland.

Early History of the Gaw family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Gaw research. Another 229 words (16 lines of text) covering the years 1334, 1367, 1397, 1399, 1450, 1469, 1499, 1513, 1525, 1533, 1547, 1613, 1640, 1737, 1779, and 1839 are included under the topic Early Gaw History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Gaw Spelling Variations

Anglo-Norman names are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations. When the Normans became the ruling people of England in the 11th century, they introduced a new language into a society where the main languages of Old and later Middle English had no definite spelling rules. These languages were more often spoken than written, so they blended freely with one another. Contributing to this mixing of tongues was the fact that medieval scribes spelled words according to sound, ensuring that a person's name would appear differently in nearly every document in which it was recorded. The name has been spelled Gall, Gauld, Gault, Galt, Gaw, Gawe, Gauwe and others.

Early Notables of the Gaw family (pre 1700)

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

Ireland Migration of the Gaw family to Ireland

Some of the Gaw family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 91 words (6 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

United States Gaw migration to the United States +

For many English families, the political and religious disarray that plagued their homeland made the frontiers of the New World an attractive prospect. Thousands migrated, aboard cramped disease-ridden ships. They arrived sick, poor, and hungry, but were welcomed in many cases with far greater opportunity than at home in England. Many of these hardy settlers went on to make important contributions to the emerging nations in which they landed. Among early immigrants bearing the name Gaw or a variant listed above were:

Gaw Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • John Gaw, who landed in America in 1799 [1]
Gaw Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Thomas Gaw, who arrived in New York, NY in 1811 [1]
  • James, Jason, John and William Gaw all, who settled in Philadelphia in 1828
  • Robert Gaw, who landed in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1832 [1]
  • Agnes Gaw, aged 23, who arrived in New York, NY in 1893 [1]
  • Mary Gaw, aged 11, who arrived in New York, NY in 1893 [1]

Contemporary Notables of the name Gaw (post 1700) +

  • Steve Gaw (b. 1957), American Democratic Party politician, Speaker of the Missouri House of Representatives
  • George Joseph "Chippy" Gaw (1892-1968), American Major League Baseball pitcher for the Chicago Cubs in 1920
  • Steve Gaw, American Democrat politician, Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Missouri, 1996, 2000 [2]

The Gaw 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: Patentia Vincit
Motto Translation: Patience conquers.

  1. ^ 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)
  2. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, November 3) . Retrieved from on Facebook
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