Show ContentsGorr History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The distinguished surname Gorr emerged among the industrious people of Flanders, which was an important trading partner and political ally of Britain during the Middle Ages. As a result of the frequent commercial intercourse between the Flemish and English nations, many Flemish migrants settled in Britain. In early times, people were known by only a single name. However, as the population grew and people traveled further afield, it became increasingly necessary to assume an additional name to differentiate between bearers of the same personal name. The manner in which hereditary surnames arose is interesting. Local surnames are derived from where the original bearer lived, was born, or held land. Flemish surnames of this type frequently are prefixed by de la or de le, which mean of the or from the. The Gorr family originally lived in Kent. Alternately, the name could have been given to someone who lived by a triangular piece of land and in this case, the surname was originally derived from the Middle English word gara. [1]

Early Origins of the Gorr family

The surname Gorr was first found in Kent where Ralph de la Gore was listed in the Pipe Rolls of 1181. A few years later John de Gore was listed in 1257. Alan atte Gore was listed in the Hundredorum Rolls of 1273. [2]

William de Gora from Wiltshire and William ad le Gorewege from Cambridgeshire were also listed in the same rolls. [3] Kirby's Quest of Somerset listed Simon atte Gore and Adam Gorwege. [4]

Early History of the Gorr family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Gorr research. Another 89 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1587, 1632, 1684, 1631, 1632, 1650, 1667, 1681, 1567, 1629, 1602, 1661, 1640 and 1697 are included under the topic Early Gorr History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Gorr Spelling Variations

Flemish surnames are characterized by a large number of spelling variations. One reason for this is that medieval English lacked definite spelling rules. The spellings of surnames were also influenced by the official court languages, which were French and Latin. Names were rarely spelled consistently in medieval times. Scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded, rather than adhering to specific spelling rules, and people often had their names registered in several different forms throughout their lives. One of the greatest reasons for change is the linguistic uniqueness of the Flemish settlers in England, who spoke a language closely related to Dutch. The pronunciation and spelling of Flemish names were often altered to suit the tastes of English-speaking people. In many cases, the first, final, or middle syllables of surnames were eliminated. The name has been spelled Gore, Gorr, Core and others.

Early Notables of the Gorr family (pre 1700)

Prominent in the family at this time was Thomas Gore (1632-1684), English writer on heraldry, born at Alderton, Wiltshire, on 20 March 1631-1632 and was the third son of Charles Gore, of Alderton. "By the deaths of his two elder brothers, Charles and Edward, Gore became heir to the...
Another 48 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Gorr Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Gorr family to Ireland

Some of the Gorr family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 135 words (10 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

United States Gorr migration to the United States +

Discovered in the immigration and passenger lists were a number of people bearing the name Gorr:

Gorr Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Johannes, Gorr Jr., who landed in America in 1836 [5]

Australia Gorr migration to Australia +

Emigration to Australia followed the First Fleets of convicts, tradespeople and early settlers. Early immigrants include:

Gorr Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century

Contemporary Notables of the name Gorr (post 1700) +

  • Rose Gorr Mayes (b. 1898), American Republican politician, Vice-chair of Idaho Republican Party, 1942-48; Delegate to Republican National Convention from Idaho, 1944; Member of Republican National Committee from Idaho, 1948-56 [7]

The Gorr 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: Sola salus servire Deo
Motto Translation: The only safe course is to serve God.

  1. Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  2. Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  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)
  4. Dickinson, F.H., Kirby's Quest for Somerset of 16th of Edward the 3rd London: Harrison and Sons, Printers in Ordinary to Her Majesty, St, Martin's Lane, 1889. Print.
  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)
  6. Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 20th August 2020). Retrieved from
  7. The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, October 19) . Retrieved from on Facebook