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

Origins Available: English, German

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

The name Heyer is part of the ancient legacy of the Anglo-Saxon tribes of Britain. Heyer was a name used for a person who was well-known as the heir to a title, fortune, or estate. The name is thought to be derived from the Old French eir, which is itself derived from the Latin heres, meaning "heir."

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Until the dictionary, an invention of only the last few hundred years, the English language lacked any comprehensive system of spelling rules. Consequently, spelling variations in names are frequently found in early Anglo-Saxon and later Anglo-Norman documents. One person's name was often spelled several different ways over a lifetime. The recorded variations of Heyer include Eyre, Eyer, Eyers, Eayres, Eyres, Ayer, Ayers,Heyer, Ayr, Air, Aires, Hyer, Hayer, Hoyer and many more.

First found in Derbyshire, where the ancestral home of the main branch of the Heyer family is thought to be located. Early written records of the name Heyer have been found in many counties, notably Derbyshire, Wiltshire, and Shropshire. In the early legends of the Eyre family, it was recounted that a Knight named Eyre who fought with Richard the Lionheart at the Battle of Ascalon during the Crusades lost a leg while defending his King, which is why the family still bears a booted leg in its crest. Another source, mentions that the traditional origin of the name was in circumstance of a Norman knight having at the Battle of Hastings succoured (helped) duke William of Normandy and given him air when he was in danger of suffocation. [1] "The Eyres appear as witnesses to charters in the Peak of Derbyshire in the remotest period to which private charters ascend. The first of the name known is William le Eyre, of Hope, in the reign of Henry III." [2]


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Heyer research. Another 223 words(16 lines of text) covering the years 1216, 1582, 1657, 1635, 1628, 1678, 1659, 1678, 1635, 1695, 1660, 1661, 1689, 1638, 1698, 1666, 1735, 1665, 1715, 1698, 1701, 1705, 1715, 1670, 1715 and 1729 are included under the topic Early Heyer History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Another 281 words(20 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Heyer Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Some of the Heyer family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 227 words(16 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Thousands of English families boarded ships sailing to the New World in the hope of escaping the unrest found in England at this time. Although the search for opportunity and freedom from persecution abroad took the lives of many because of the cramped conditions and unsanitary nature of the vessels, the opportunity perceived in the growing colonies of North America beckoned. Many of the settlers who survived the journey went on to make important contributions to the transplanted cultures of their adopted countries. The Heyer were among these contributors, for they have been located in early North American records:

Heyer Settlers in United States in the 18th Century


  • Johan Jurg Heyer, who landed in New York in 1709
  • Lienert Heyer, who arrived in Pennsylvania in 1737
  • George Heyer, who arrived in Pennsylvania in 1738
  • Johan Georg Heyer, who arrived in Pennsylvania in 1739
  • Joh Friederich Heyer, who landed in Pennsylvania in 1743


Heyer Settlers in United States in the 19th Century


  • Jacob Heyer, aged 23, arrived in Missouri in 1848
  • Charles Heyer, aged 18, landed in New York, NY in 1848
  • August Heyer, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1850
  • Andrew Heyer, who landed in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1851
  • Joseph Anthony Heyer, who landed in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1851


Heyer Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century


  • George Heyer arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Sir Edward Parry" in 1849

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  • John Christian Frederick Heyer (1793-1873), American missionary, founder of the Guntur Mission in Andhra Pradesh, India
  • John Henry Heyer (1831-1905), American politician
  • Stephon Heyer (b. 1984), American NFL football player
  • Georgette Heyer (1902-1974), English historical romance and detective fiction novelist
  • Hans Heyer (b. 1943), German racing driver
  • John Heyer OBE, OAM (1916-2001), Australian documentary filmmaker, the father of Australian documentary film
  • Hans-Joachim Heyer (1920-1942), German Luftwaffe ace, credited with 53 aerial victories, recipient of the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross during World War II
  • Sascha Heyer (b. 1972), Swiss gold, three-time silver and bronze medalist beach volleyball player
  • Shane Heyer (b. 1964), Canadian NHL ice hockey linesman
  • Volker Heyer (b. 1970), German silver medalist judoka at the 1997 European Judo Championships


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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: Virtus sola invicta
Motto Translation: Virtue alone is invincible.

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  1. ^ Lowe, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  2. ^ 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. Chadwick, Nora Kershaw and J.X.W.P Corcoran. The Celts. London: Penguin, 1790. Print. (ISBN 0140212116).
  2. Skordas, Guest. Ed. The Early Settlers of Maryland an Index to Names or Immigrants Complied from Records of Land Patents 1633-1680 in the Hall of Records Annapolis, Maryland. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1968. Print.
  3. Virkus, Frederick A. Ed. Immigrant Ancestors A List of 2,500 Immigrants to America Before 1750. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1964. Print.
  4. Passenger Lists of Vessels Arriving at Galveston Texas 1896-1951. National Archives Washington DC. Print.
  5. Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds. Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8).
  6. Lennard, Reginald. Rural England 1086-1135 A Study of Social and Agrarian Conditions. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1959. Print.
  7. Hinde, Thomas Ed. The Domesday Book England's Heritage Then and Now. Surrey: Colour Library Books, 1995. Print. (ISBN 1-85833-440-3).
  8. Bardsley, C.W. A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6).
  9. Le Patourel, John. The Norman Empire. New York: Oxford University Press, 1976. Print. (ISBN 0-19-822525-3).
  10. Innes, Thomas and Learney. The Tartans of the Clans and Families of Scotland 1st Edition. Edinburgh: W & A. K. Johnston Limited, 1938. Print.
  11. ...

The Heyer Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Heyer 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 21 May 2015 at 13:12.

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