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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright 2000 - 2015

Where did the English Harrett family come from? What is the English Harrett family crest and coat of arms? When did the Harrett family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the Harrett family history?

The ancient roots of the Harrett family name are in the Anglo-Saxon culture. The name Harrett comes from when the family lived in Cheshire, where the family was found since the early Middle Ages.


One relatively recent invention that did much to standardize English spelling was the printing press. However, before its invention even the most literate people recorded their names according to sound rather than spelling. The spelling variations under which the name Harrett has appeared include Sherard, Sherrard, Sherrat, Shirrard and others.

First found in Cheshire at Thornton, where the family was first listed in the 13th century. William Sherard who died in 1304 appears to be the first listing of the surname. [1]


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Harrett research. Another 187 words (13 lines of text) covering the years 1066, 1304, 1670, 1588, 1640, 1621, 1700, 1675, 1732, 1675, 1732, 1680, 1750, 1623, 1695, 1660 and are included under the topic Early Harrett History in all our PDF Extended History products.


Another 103 words (7 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Harrett Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.


Some of the Harrett family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 107 words (8 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.


At this time, the shores of the New World beckoned many English families that felt that the social climate in England was oppressive and lacked opportunity for change. Thousands left England at great expense in ships that were overcrowded and full of disease. A great portion of these settlers never survived the journey and even a greater number arrived sick, starving, and without a penny. The survivors, however, were often greeted with greater opportunity than they could have experienced back home. These English settlers made significant contributions to those colonies that would eventually become the United States and Canada. An examination of early immigration records and passenger ship lists revealed that people bearing the name Harrett arrived in North America very early:

Harrett Settlers in United States in the 17th Century

  • Mathew Harrett, who arrived in Virginia in 1661

Harrett Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • Mary Harrett, aged 10, landed in Mobile, Ala in 1851


  • Ruth V. Harrett, American politician, Prohibition Candidate for U.S. Representative from Michigan 14th District, 1958


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: Hostis honori invidia
Motto Translation: Envy is an enemy to honour.


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  1. ^ Shirley, Evelyn Philip, The Noble and Gentle Men of England; The Arms and Descents. Westminster: John Bower Nichols and Sons, 1866, Print.

Other References

  1. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  2. Cook, Chris. English Historical Facts 1603-1688. London: MacMillan, 1980. Print.
  3. Fairbairn. Fairbain's book of Crests of the Families of Great Britain and Ireland, 4th Edition 2 volumes in one. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1968. Print.
  4. Dunkling, Leslie. Dictionary of Surnames. Toronto: Collins, 1998. Print. (ISBN 0004720598).
  5. Hinde, Thomas Ed. The Domesday Book England's Heritage Then and Now. Surrey: Colour Library Books, 1995. Print. (ISBN 1-85833-440-3).
  6. Humble, Richard. The Fall of Saxon England. New York: Barnes and Noble, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-88029-987-8).
  7. Shaw, William A. Knights of England A Complete Record from the Earliest Time to the Present Day of the Knights of all the Orders of Chivalry in England, Scotland, Ireland and Knights Bachelors 2 Volumes. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print. (ISBN 080630443X).
  8. Foster, Joseph. Dictionary of Heraldry Feudal Coats of Arms and Pedigrees. London: Bracken Books, 1989. Print. (ISBN 1-85170-309-8).
  9. Library of Congress. American and English Genealogies in the Library of Congress. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1967. Print.
  10. Bradford, William. History of Plymouth Plantation 1620-1647 Edited by Samuel Eliot Morrison 2 Volumes. New York: Russell and Russell, 1968. Print.
  11. ...

The Harrett Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Harrett Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

This page was last modified on 7 October 2015 at 13:05.

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