Guess History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The surname Guess was originally formed in the western region of Britain in the country of Wales. This name began as a nickname for a guest or stranger. The surname Guess is derived from the Old English word "gest," which in turn comes from the Old Norse Word "gestr," which means "guest" or "stranger."

Early Origins of the Guess family

The surname Guess was first found in Worcestershire, where they held a family seat from very ancient times.

Early History of the Guess family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Guess research. Another 109 words (8 lines of text) covering the years 1248 and 1273 are included under the topic Early Guess History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Guess Spelling Variations

The Welsh have an extremely large amount of spelling variations of their native surnames to their credit. Priests or the scribes determined how the spoken name was to be made literal. As time progressed, the old Brythonic names of Wales were recorded in English, which was especially problematic since the English language had extreme difficulty recording the highly inflected sounds of Cymraeg. Spelling variations were, however, also carried out according to an individual's design: a branch loyalty within the family, a religious adherence, or even patriotic affiliations could be indicated by spelling variations of one's name. The spelling variations of the name Guess have included Guest, Guests, Jeste and others.

Early Notables of the Guess family (pre 1700)

Prominent amongst the family during the late Middle Ages was John Guest (1722-1785), a brewer, farmer and coal merchant in Broseley, Shropshire, co-founder of the Plymouth Ironworks in 1763; Sir Josiah John Guest, 1st...
Another 33 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Guess Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Guess family to Ireland

Some of the Guess family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 41 words (3 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Guess migration to the United States +

North America in the 1800s and 1900s saw the arrival of many Welsh people hoping to share in the wealth of land, work, and freedom that they felt North America held. Those who made the journey often attained those expectations, but only through an enormous amount of hard work, perseverance, and often a bout of good luck. These immigrants helped contribute to the growth of industry, commerce, and culture of both Canada and the United States. Discovered in the immigration and passenger lists were a number of people bearing the name Guess:

Guess Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • James Guess, who landed in New York, NY in 1811 [1]
  • John Guess, aged 34, who landed in New York in 1812 [1]
  • Francis Guess, aged 23, who arrived in New York in 1812 [1]

Canada Guess migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Guess Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • Richard Guess, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1839

Contemporary Notables of the name Guess (post 1700) +

  • Francis Guess (1946-2015), American businessman, civil rights advocate and public servant, member of the U. S. Civil Rights Commission (1983-1989)
  • Walter Eugene Guess (1932-1975), American Democratic Party politician, Member of Alaska State House of Representatives, 1965-72; Speaker of the Alaska State House of Representatives, 1971-72 [2]
  • Gretchen Guess, American Democratic Party politician, Member of Alaska State House of Representatives 16th District, 2001 [2]
  • George W. Guess (1829-1868), American politician, Mayor of Dallas, Texas, 1866-68 [2]
  • Frank H. Guess, American politician, Circuit Judge in Georgia Stone Mountain Circuit, 1953 [2]
  • C. N. Guess, American politician, Member of Georgia State House of Representatives from DeKalb County, 1923-24 [2]

Halifax Explosion
  • Ms. Katherine Guess, Canadian resident from Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada who died in the explosion [3]
  • Mrs. Johanna  Guess (1852-1917), Canadian resident from Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada who died in the explosion [3]
  • Mrs. Mary H.  Guess, Canadian resident from Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada who died in the explosion [3]
  • Mr. William Henry  Guess (1887-1917), Canadian resident from Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada who died in the explosion [3]
  • Mr. Ralph  Guess, Canadian resident from Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada who died in the explosion [3]
  • ... (Another 2 entries are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)


The Guess 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: Ferro non gladio
Motto Translation: By iron, not by the sword.


Suggested Readings for the name Guess +

  • 4494 Guest-Guess, History and Lineage in America by Alta Louise Biggs Martin.

  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 2016, January 20) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html
  3. ^ Halifax Explosion Book of Remembrance | Maritime Museum of the Atlantic. (Retrieved 2014, June 23) . Retrieved from https://maritimemuseum.novascotia.ca/what-see-do/halifax-explosion/halifax-explosion-book-remembrance


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