Show ContentsGermann History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The Germann family has descended through the lines of the ancient Normans that came to England following their Conquest of England in 1066. The Germann name reveals that an early member was a person of German descent, or a person who was associated with that country through trade or other means. Another derivation of the name suggests that it derives from the Old French given name Germain. This name was borne by a popular French saint from the 5th century, and also meant of the same stock, or related to.

Germanus (378?-448), was "Bishop of Auxerre, and missionary to Britain, son of noble parents whose names are given as Rusticus and Germanilla, was born at Auxerre about 378, and after attending schools in Gaul went to study at Rome. " [1]

Germann is a classic example of an polygenetic surname, which is a surname that was developed in a number of different locations and adopted by various families independently.

Early Origins of the Germann family

The surname Germann was first found in Essex where Jerman filius Willelmi was listed in the Feet of Fines for 1248. [2] However, Germanus was earlier listed in the Domesday Book of 1086. [3]

Early History of the Germann family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Germann research. Another 141 words (10 lines of text) covering the years 1066, 1086, 1250, 1248, 1279, 1318, 1402, 1377, 1397, 1650, 1718, 1680, 1769 and 1738 are included under the topic Early Germann History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Germann Spelling Variations

Before the advent of the printing press and the first dictionaries, the English language was not standardized. Sound was what guided spelling in the Middle Ages, so one person's name was often recorded under several variations during a single lifetime. Spelling variations were common, even among the names of the most literate people. Known variations of the Germann family name include German, Germans, Jermain, Jarman and others.

Early Notables of the Germann family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Robert German (died 1402), English politician, Member (MP) of the Parliament of England for Nottingham from 1377 to 1397. Sir John Germain, 1st Baronet (1650-1718), was a British soldier and politician, thought to have been an illegitimate half-brother of William III of England. "His mother, who was very handsome, is stated to have been that prince's mistress, and Germain is said to have assumed 'as his seal and armorial bearing' a red cross, implying pretensions to exalted...
Another 84 words (6 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Germann Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Germann Ranking

In the United States, the name Germann is the 17,337th most popular surname with an estimated 2,487 people with that name. [4]

Ireland Migration of the Germann family to Ireland

Some of the Germann family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. More information about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

United States Germann migration to the United States +

To escape the political and religious chaos of this era, thousands of English families began to migrate to the New World in search of land and freedom from religious and political persecution. The passage was expensive and the ships were dark, crowded, and unsafe; however, those who made the voyage safely were encountered opportunities that were not available to them in their homeland. Many of the families that reached the New World at this time went on to make important contributions to the emerging nations of the United States and Canada. Research into various historical records has revealed some of first members of the Germann family to immigrate North America:

Germann Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Jacob Germann, who arrived in New York, NY in 1710 [5]
  • Miss Germann, who arrived in America in 1788 [5]
Germann Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Johann Germann, aged 20, who arrived in New York, NY in 1848 [5]
  • Joh Friedr Germann, who landed in America in 1850 [5]
  • Jakob Germann, who arrived in Brazil in 1862 [5]

Canada Germann migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Germann Settlers in Canada in the 20th Century
  • lgnatz Germann, aged 51, who landed in Halifax, Nova Scotia in 1902
  • Michael Germann, aged 9, who landed in Halifax, Nova Scotia in 1902
  • Regina Germann, aged 3, who landed in Halifax, Nova Scotia in 1902
  • Franziska Germann, who arrived in Halifax, Nova Scotia in 1902

Contemporary Notables of the name Germann (post 1700) +

  • Gregory Andrew "Greg" Germann (b. 1958), American actor, best known for his role as Richard Fish in the television series Ally McBeal and as Mattson in Child's Play 2
  • Adolf Germann (1857-1924), Swiss politician, President of the Swiss National Council (1908-1909)
  • Theodor Germann (1879-1935), Latvian chess master who later lived and played in London in the 1910s
  • Monika Germann (b. 1954), Swiss cross country skier at the 1984 Winter Olympics
  • Pierre-Michel "Pierre" Germann (b. 1985), French professional footballer
  • Hannes Germann (b. 1956), Swiss politician, Member of the Swiss Council of States for the Canton of Schaffhausen (2002-)
  • Markus Arthur Germann, Swiss figure skater, the 1963 & 1964 Swiss national champion

  1. Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print
  2. Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  3. Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
  4. "What are the 5,000 Most Common Last Names in the U.S.?".,
  5. 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