Show ContentsHarsen History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The name Harsen finds its origins with the ancient Anglo-Saxons of England. It was given to one who worked as a guardian of cattle or sheep. The surname Harsen is derived from the Old English word hierde, which means herd, and the patronymic suffix -son. Thus, the name Harsen literally means "son of the herdsman." [1]

Early Origins of the Harsen family

The surname Harsen was first found in Lancashire, on the west coast near Lythom-St. Annes, where they were associated with Furness Abbey. They were a prominent family here from very early times.

In Essex, Robert Herdesman was listed at Colchester in 1367. [2]

Early History of the Harsen family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Harsen research. Another 58 words (4 lines of text) covering the years 1597, 1621, 1660, 1685, 1651 and 1649 are included under the topic Early Harsen History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Harsen Spelling Variations

The English language only became standardized in the last few centuries; therefore, spelling variations are common among early Anglo-Saxon names. As the form of the English language changed, even the spelling of literate people's names evolved. Harsen has been recorded under many different variations, including Herdson, Hirdson, Heardson, Hurdson, Herson and others.

Early Notables of the Harsen family (pre 1700)

Distinguished members of the family include Henry Herdson (fl. 1651), English writer on mnemonics, probably received part of his education at Cambridge, as he terms that university his 'dearest mother.' He styled himself professor of the art of memory by public authority in the University of Cambridge. Afterwards he taught his art in London at the...
Another 55 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Harsen Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

United States Harsen migration to the United States +

For many English families, the political and religious disarray that shrouded England made the far away New World an attractive prospect. On cramped disease-ridden ships, thousands migrated to those British colonies that would eventually become Canada and the United States. Those hardy settlers that survived the journey often went on to make important contributions to the emerging nations in which they landed. Analysis of immigration records indicates that some of the first North American immigrants bore the name Harsen or a variant listed above:

Harsen Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • M V Harsen, aged 17, who arrived in New York, NY in 1847 [3]

Contemporary Notables of the name Harsen (post 1700) +

  • James N. Harsen, American Republican politician, Candidate in primary for Michigan State Senate 17th District, 1966 [4]
  • John Harsen Rhoades Jr., (1869-1905), American founder of Rhoades & Company in 1905 which would later become Loeb, Rhoades & Co. in 1937

  1. Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  2. Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  3. 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)
  4. The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, October 19) . Retrieved from on Facebook