Girreart History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
The name Girreart is from the ancient Anglo-Saxon culture of the Britain and comes from the son of Gerard. The surname Girreart was originally derived from the Old German Gerhard which meant spear-brave. 
Early Origins of the Girreart family
The surname Girreart was first found in the Domesday Book of 1086 where the Latin form Gerardus and Girardus were listed.  The Latin form prevailed into the next century when Gerardus was listed in Norfolk in 1134-1140, and in 1149-1162 in Lincolnshire. 
Other early records include: John, Hugo Gerard in the Pipe Rolls for Northumberland in 1199; William Gerart in the Assize Rolls for Staffordshire in 1281; Henry Jerard in the Feet of Fines for Essex in 1284; John Gerrard, Thomas Garard, and William Garrarde in Yorkshire in 1412, 1429 and 1458. 
Gerard (died 21 May 1108), "Archbishop of York, was the nephew of Walkelin, bishop of Winchester, and his brother Simeon, abbot of Ely, and therefore, possibly, a distant kinsman of the Conqueror. He was precentor of the cathedral of Rouen, and afterwards a clerk of William Rufus's chapel and chancery. William dispatched him in 1095, in company with William of Warelwast, afterwards bishop of Exeter, to the papal court on a secret and delicate mission in connection with the dispute between the king and Anselm. The alleged object of their embassage was to investigate the claims of the two rival popes." 
He was Lord Chancellor of England (1085-1092) appointed by William I, and later Archbishop of York (1100-1108.) He may have been with the king's hunting party when William II was killed, as he witnessed the first charter issued by the new king, Henry I of England, a few days later.
Windle with Hardshaw in Lancashire was home to the family in later years. "In the reign of Edward III., the manor was held under William Boteler by Peter de Burnhull, with whose heiress the Gerards acquired the property; and this latter family are the present lords. Windle Hall belongs to Sir John Gerard, Bart., at whose annual court lor the manor of Windle, officers are chosen for the township." 
"Gerrard or Gerard is a very old Lancashire name. The Gerards of Bryn were lords of the manor of Brindle from the 14th to the 16th century: this distinguished family stands amongst the foremost of the Lancashire families, both in early and in more recent times, and received a baronetcy from James I." 
"The Gerrards were an ancient and titled Cheshire family. The Lords Gerard of Gerards Bromley from the 16th to the 18th century were descended from the Gerards of Ince in Lancashire; the Gerards of Kingsley and Crewood came from Hawarden in Flintshire in the time of Edward I. " 
Early History of the Girreart family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Girreart research. Another 127 words (9 lines of text) covering the years 1177, 1545, 1611, 1593, 1559, 1581, 1564, 1618, 1622, 1613, 1640, 1634, 1667, 1587, 1670, 1617, 1680, 1641, 1660, 1618, 1683, 1660, 1687, 1661, 1685, 1659, 1701, 1689 and 1694 are included under the topic Early Girreart History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Girreart Spelling Variations
The first dictionaries that appeared in the last few hundred years did much to standardize the English language. Before that time, spelling variations in names were a common occurrence. The language was changing, incorporating pieces of other languages, and the spelling of names changed with it. Girreart has been spelled many different ways, including Gerrard, Gerard, Jarrard, Jared, Garrad, Garred, Jarratt, Jarrett and many more.
Early Notables of the Girreart family (pre 1700)
Notables of the family at this time include John Gerard (Gerarde) (1545-1611), an English botanist and herbalist, who maintained a large herbal garden in London, eponym of the botanical genus Gerardia; Sir Gilbert Gerard (died 1593), a prominent lawyer, politician, and landowner who served six times as a member of the English parliament, Attorney-General (1559) Master of the Rolls (1581); Sir Thomas Gerard, 1st Baron Gerard (ca. 1564-1618); Gilbert Gerard, 2nd Baron Gerard (d. 1622); Dutton Gerard, 3rd Baron Gerard (1613-1640); Charles Gerard, 4th Baron Gerard (1634-1667); Sir Gilbert Gerard, 1st Baronet of Harrow on...
Migration of the Girreart family
Thousands of English families in this era began to emigrate the New World in search of land and freedom from religious and political persecution. Although the passage was expensive and the ships were dark, crowded, and unsafe, those who made the voyage safely were rewarded with opportunities unavailable to them in their homeland. Research into passenger and immigration lists has revealed some of the very first Girrearts to arrive in North America: Richard Gerrard, who landed in Maryland in 1634; Gilbert Gerrard, who settled in Virginia in 1643; Elizabeth Gerrard, who came to Maryland in 1650; Susan Gerrard, who arrived in Barbados in 1686.