Show ContentsGuppy History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The distinguished Old English surname Guppy means "of Gopheye," and indicates someone who hails from the town of Gopheye in Dorset.

Early Origins of the Guppy family

The surname Guppy was first found in Dorset, at Guppy (formerly Guppehegh.)

Three sources presume that the name was originally Norman and came over with the Conquest. In this case, the name was derived from either "goupil," a fox. [1] [2] The Magni Rotuli Scaccarii Normanniae includes a listing for Ursel and Aufrid Gopil, Normandy 1180-95 which points to the thought that not all of the family arrived at or after the Conquest. The Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 include the following listing: Richard Gopil, England. [3]

However, we must defer to Henry Brougham Guppy FRS FRSE FLS (1854-1926) the noted British surgeon, geologist, botanist and photographer who was awarded the Linnean Medal in 1917. In his work Homes of Family Names in Great Britain (1890) he made the following entry:

"For nearly four centuries, in fact as far back as the parish registers enable us to trace the name, the principal home of the Guppys has been in Dorset, close to the Somerset and Devon borders, as shown by the wills in Somerset House; several families of well - to - do yeomen bearing this name resided in Halstock, South Perrott, Cheddington, and Frampton, during the 16th and 17th centuries. Pickyeate, Pykeyeate, or Picket, in South Perrott, was the residence of a family of Guppy or Guppie as far back as the reign of Elizabeth, and the name has since been frequent in the South Perrott registers until within the last twenty years. From Dorset the name extended into the surrounding counties of Somerset, Devon, and Wilts, in the last two of which it is now very rare or extinct. " [4]

We continue to include more of his research later in this work.

Evidence of the Guppy parish has been lost over the years, but we did find record of Nicholas Gopheye who according to the Subsidy Rolls of Somerset held estates there in 1327. Due to the fact that Dorset borders onto Somerset, one can easily understand how he claimed Dorset as his original homestead.

Early History of the Guppy family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Guppy research. Another 384 words (27 lines of text) covering the years 1392, 1685, 1639, 1747, 1710 and 1763 are included under the topic Early Guppy History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Guppy Spelling Variations

Spelling variations of this family name include: Guppy, Goobie, Gophy, Gophie, Guppey, Gooby, Goby, Gobey, Guby, Gube and many more.

Early Notables of the Guppy family (pre 1700)

Distinguished members of the family include Lewis Goupy (d. 1747), French-born, English painter who went to London before 1710 , where he is said to have had a brother already resident as...
Another 31 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Guppy Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

United States Guppy migration to the United States +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Guppy Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • John Guppy, who immigrated to Maryland in 1771
Guppy Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Samuel Guppy, who was living in New York in 1834
  • William Guppy, who arrived in New York in 1836 [5]
  • Edwin Guppy, who was naturalized in Philadelphia in 1859

Canada Guppy migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Guppy Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • William Guppy, who was recorded in the 1871 census of Ontario

Australia Guppy migration to Australia +

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

Guppy Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Mr. Joseph Guppy, English convict who was convicted in Bristol, England for 7 years, transported aboard the "Fairlie" on 14th October 1833, arriving in New South Wales, Australia [6]
  • James Guppy, aged 25, who arrived in South Australia in 1849 aboard the ship "Florentia" [7]
  • Emanuel Guppy, aged 31, a farm labourer, who arrived in South Australia in 1849 aboard the ship "Prince Regent" [8]
  • Walter Guppy, aged 17, a farm labourer, who arrived in South Australia in 1849 aboard the ship "Prince Regent" [8]
  • Mr. William Flower Guppy, (b. 1827), aged 30, English convict who was convicted in London, England for 14 years for stealing, transported aboard the "Clara" on 19th March 1857, arriving in Western Australia, Australia, he died in 1903 [9]

New Zealand Guppy migration to New Zealand +

Emigration to New Zealand followed in the footsteps of the European explorers, such as Captain Cook (1769-70): first came sealers, whalers, missionaries, and traders. By 1838, the British New Zealand Company had begun buying land from the Maori tribes, and selling it to settlers, and, after the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840, many British families set out on the arduous six month journey from Britain to Aotearoa to start a new life. Early immigrants include:

Guppy Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Robert Guppy, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Wyvern" in 1856

West Indies Guppy migration to West Indies +

The British first settled the British West Indies around 1604. They made many attempts but failed in some to establish settlements on the Islands including Saint Lucia and Grenada. By 1627 they had managed to establish settlements on St. Kitts (St. Christopher) and Barbados, but by 1641 the Spanish had moved in and destroyed some of these including those at Providence Island. The British continued to expand the settlements including setting the First Federation in the British West Indies by 1674; some of the islands include Barbados, Bermuda, Cayman Island, Turks and Caicos, Jamaica and Belize then known as British Honduras. By the 1960's many of the islands became independent after the West Indies Federation which existed from 1958 to 1962 failed due to internal political conflicts. After this a number of Eastern Caribbean islands formed a free association. [10]
Guppy Settlers in West Indies in the 17th Century
  • William Guppy, who settled in Barbados in 1685

Contemporary Notables of the name Guppy (post 1700) +

  • Henry Brougham Guppy FRS (1854-1926), British botanist, recipient of the Linnean Medal, author of Homes of Family Names in Great Britain
  • Kevin Guppy (b. 1987), American soccer player
  • Sarah Guppy (1770-1852), née Beach, an English inventor who held over 10 patents relating to seafaring
  • Stephen Andrew Guppy (b. 1969), English football left midfielder
  • John Guppy (1874-1937), Newfoundland fisherman, farmer and politician for Trinity Bay from 1919 to 1923
  • Hayden Guppy, Australian TV presenter
  • Neil Guppy (b. 1949), Canadian professor and sociologist at the University of British Columbia
  • Robert John Lechmere Guppy (1836-1916), British-born naturalist, eponym of the Guppy (fish)
  • Henry Guppy CBE (1861-1948), British Librarian of the John Rylands Library in Manchester from 1899 to 1948

Empress of Ireland
  • Miss Eleanor Guppy (1884-1914), Canadian Third Class Passenger from Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada who was traveling aboard the Empress of Ireland and died in the sinking [11]

  1. Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  2. Harrison, Henry, Surnames of the United Kingdom: A Concise Etymological Dictionary Baltimore: Geneological Publishing Company, 2013. Print
  3. The Norman People and Their Existing Descendants in the British Dominions and the United States Of America. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0636-X)
  4. Guppy, Henry Brougham, Homes of Family Names in Great Britain. 1890. 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 21st September 2022).
  7. State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) FLORENTIA 1849. Retrieved from
  8. State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) "PRINCE REGENT" 1849. Retrieved from
  9. Convict Records of Australia. Retrieved 11th February 2021 from
  11. Commemoration Empress of Ireland 2014. (Retrieved 2014, June 16) . Retrieved from on Facebook