Show ContentsGreener History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The ancestors of the name Greener date back to the Anglo-Saxon tribes of Britain. The name is derived from when the Greener family lived in Greenhalg in Kirkham and Greenhalg Castle in Garstang. The surname Greener originally derived from greene as n the village greene which was the center or main square of each region. Many inhabitants in various counties adopted this surname as part of their family's nomenclature. The surname Greener is a topographic surname, which was given to a person who resided near a physical feature such as a hill, stream, church, or type of tree. Habitation names form the other broad category of surnames that were derived from place-names. They were derived from pre-existing names for towns, villages, parishes, or farmsteads. Other local names are derived from the names of houses, manors, estates, regions, and entire counties. As a general rule, the greater the distance between an individual and their homeland, the larger the territory they were named after. For example, a person who only moved to another parish would be known by the name of their original village, while people who migrated to a different country were often known by the name of a region or country from which they came.

Early Origins of the Greener family

The surname Greener was first found in Shropshire where Richard de Grenhal was listed in the Pipe Rolls of 1230. A few years later, William de Grenol was listed in the Assize Rolls for Lancashire in 1246, as was Matill de Greenhalgh, William de Grenolf, de Grenholl in the Subsidy Rolls for 1332. [1]

One branch originated in Greenhalgh (now known as Greenhalgh-with-Thistleton), a civil parish on the Fylde in Lancashire or possibly Greenhalgh, now Greenhalgh Castle, in Garstang parish, Lancashire, (spelt Greenhaugh) [2]

"The Greenhalghs, who are best represented in the Middleton district, derive their name from a Lancashire township. During the 15th century, the Grenehalghs of Brandlesome were hereditary bailiffs of Tottington, and during the two succeeding centuries they gained and retained the position of gentry. The name of Thomas Greenhalgh occurs in the list of intended Knights of the Royal Oak, amongst those of other Lancashire gentlemen, the annual value of his estate being there placed at £1,000: this Order, however, which Charles II. intended as a reward for his followers, was never founded." [3]

Early History of the Greener family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Greener research. Another 269 words (19 lines of text) covering the years 1246, 1576, 1584, 1613, 1672, 1635, 1591, 1661, 1791, 1810, 1591, 1671, 1611, 1658, 1648, 1652, 1655, 1658, 1615, 1679, 1669, 1740, 1646, 1708, 1644, 1676, 1644, 1651 and 1599 are included under the topic Early Greener History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Greener Spelling Variations

It is only in the last few hundred years that the English language has been standardized. For that reason, early Anglo-Saxon surnames like Greener are characterized by many spelling variations. As the English language changed and incorporated elements of other European languages, even literate people changed the spelling of their names. The variations of the name Greener include: Greenhalgh, Greenhow, Greenhough, Greenhall and others.

Early Notables of the Greener family (pre 1700)

Distinguished members of the family include William Greenhill (1591-1671), an English nonconformist clergyman from Oxfordshire, independent minister, and member of the Westminster Assembly; Thomas Greenhill (1611?-1658), an English colonial administrator, one of the early pioneers of the East India Company and the Agent of Madras for two terms (1648-1652) and (1655-1658); Elizabeth Greenhill, (1615-1679), who bore 39 children alive, and baptised, the last of whom was Thomas Greenhill (1669?-1740), English surgeon to Henry Howard, 7th Duke of Norfolk; Henry Greenhill (1646-1708), Agent-General at...
Another 83 words (6 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Greener Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

United States Greener migration to the United States +

Many English families tired of political and religious strife left Britain for the new colonies in North America. Although the trip itself offered no relief - conditions on the ships were extremely cramped, and many travelers arrived diseased, starving, and destitute - these immigrants believed the opportunities that awaited them were worth the risks. Once in the colonies, many of the families did indeed prosper and, in turn, made significant contributions to the culture and economies of the growing colonies. An inquiry into the early roots of North American families has revealed a number of immigrants bearing the name Greener or a variant listed above:

Greener Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • George Greener, who landed in Texas in 1850-1906 [4]
  • Jacob Greener, who arrived in Texas in 1850-1906 [4]
  • Adolph Greener, who arrived in Pennsylvania in 1864 [4]
  • Ernest Greener, who landed in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1864 [4]
  • A Greener, who landed in Mississippi in 1875 [4]
Greener Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • Victor Greener, arrived in New York in 1919 from Oran, Algeria [5]
  • Helen May Greener, aged 34, originally from Vancouver, Canada, arrived in New York City, New York in 1919 aboard the ship "Vasari" from Liverpool, England [6]

Contemporary Notables of the name Greener (post 1700) +

  • Richard Theodore Greener (1844-1922), first African-American graduate of Harvard College, Dean of the Howard University School of Law, U.S. Consul in Bombay, 1898; U.S. Commercial Agent (Consul) in Vladivostok, 1898-1905
  • Dot Greener (b. 1945), American Republican politician, Delegate to Republican National Convention from Arizona, 2004 [7]
  • Ronald "Ron" Greener (1934-2015), English footballer who played from 1952 to 1969
  • William Wellington Greener (1834-1921), English gunsmith, son of the gunsmith William Greener
  • William Greener (1806-1869), English inventor and gunmaker, founder of W.W. Greener, a sporting shotgun and rifle manufacturer in England in 1829
  • Christopher Paul Greener (1943-2015), British actor and basketball player

  1. Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  2. Baines Thomas & William Fairbairn, Lancashire and Cheshire, Past and Present History of Counties London: William MacKenzie, 1867, Digital, 4 vols
  3. Guppy, Henry Brougham, Homes of Family Names in Great Britain. 1890. Print.
  4. 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)
  5. "New York Passenger Arrival Lists (Ellis Island), 1892-1924," database, FamilySearch ( : 6 December 2014), Victor Greener, 08 Nov 1919; citing departure port Oran, Algeria, arrival port New York, ship name , NARA microfilm publication T715 and M237 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.).
  6. "New York Passenger Arrival Lists (Ellis Island), 1892-1924," database, FamilySearch ( : 6 December 2014), Helen May Greener, 19 Dec 1919; citing departure port Liverpool, arrival port New York City, New York, New York, ship name Vasari, NARA microfilm publication T715 and M237 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.).
  7. The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, November 23) . Retrieved from on Facebook