Jefferis History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The Jefferis surname is a patronymic name that comes from the personal names Geoffrey and Godfrey. These names appear in Old English as Geffrey and in Old French as Jefroi or Jeufroi. The surname Jefferis makes use of the patronymic suffix -son, which had superseded all other such suffixes in popularity by the 14th century, and was most common in the north of Britain. This suffix was sometimes abbreviated to -s.

Early Origins of the Jefferis family

The surname Jefferis was first found in Herefordshire, where they held a family seat from very ancient times, some say well before the Norman Conquest and the arrival of Duke William at Hastings in 1066 A.D.

Important Dates for the Jefferis family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Jefferis research. Another 118 words (8 lines of text) covering the years 1645, 1689, 1610, 1685, 1643, 1613, 1703, 1674 and 1685 are included under the topic Early Jefferis History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Jefferis Spelling Variations

There are relatively few surnames native to Wales, but they have an inordinately large number of spelling variations. Early variations of Welsh surnames can be explained by the fact that very few people in the early Middle Ages were literate. Priests and the few other literate people were responsible for recording names in official documents. And because most people could not specific how to properly record their names it was up to the individual recorder of that time to determine how a spoken name should be recorded. Variations due to the imprecise or improper recording of a name continued later in history when names originally composed in the Brythonic Celtic, language of Wales, known by natives as Cymraeg, were transliterated into English. Welsh names that were documented in English often changed dramatically since the native language of Wales, which was highly inflected, did not copy well. Occasionally, however, spelling variations were carried out according to an individual's specific design: a branch loyalty within the family, a religious adherence, or even patriotic affiliations could be indicated by minor variations. The spelling variations of the name Jefferis have included Jeffreys, Jeffereys, Jefferies, Jeffers, Jefferis, Jefferyes, Jefferys, Jeffries, Jeffry, Jeffs, Jefries and many more.

Early Notables of the Jefferis family (pre 1700)

Prominent amongst the family during the late Middle Ages was George Jeffreys, 1st Baron Jeffreys of Wem (1645-1689), Welsh jurist & politician, known as "The Hanging Judge," Lord Chancellor of Britain; George Jeffreys (ca.1610-1685)...
Another 33 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Jefferis Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the Jefferis family to Ireland

Some of the Jefferis family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 56 words (4 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Jefferis migration to the United States

During the latter half of the 19th and the beginning of the 20th century, the people of Wales journeyed to North America to find a new life. They made major contributions to the arts, industry and commerce of both Canada and the United States, and added a rich cultural heritage to their newly adopted societies. A look at the immigration and passenger lists has shown a number of people bearing the name Jefferis:

Jefferis Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Susan Jefferis, who landed in America in 1654-1679 [1]
  • Charles Jefferis, who settled in Jamaica in 1684
Jefferis Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • George Jefferis, who arrived in America in 1810 [1]
  • Wm. Jefferis, aged 20, who settled in America from Cinderford, Eng., in 1893
Jefferis Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • J. H. Jefferis, who landed in America, in 1904
  • Carl M. Jefferis, aged 30, who immigrated to the United States, in 1906
  • Frederik Jefferis, aged 30, who landed in America from London, England, in 1908
  • Mary Jefferis, aged 35, who settled in America from London, England, in 1908
  • Thomas Jefferis, aged 33, who immigrated to the United States from Workingham, England, in 1911
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Contemporary Notables of the name Jefferis (post 1700)

  • Plummer E. Jefferis, American politician, Member of Pennsylvania State House of Representatives from Chester County, 1897-1900; Burgess of West Chester, Pennsylvania, 1909-13 [2]
  • Edward F. Jefferis, American Republican politician, Alternate Delegate to Republican National Convention from Texas, 1972 [2]
  • Daniel W. Jefferis, American politician, Mayor of Chester, Pennsylvania, 1899-1902 [2]
  • Albert Webb Jefferis (1868-1942), American Republican politician, U.S. Representative from Nebraska 2nd District, 1919-23; Delegate to Republican National Convention from Nebraska, 1932 [2]
  • Barbara Jefferis AM (1917-2004), Australian author, eponym of the Barbara Jefferis Award
  • Joshua Jefferis (b. 1985), Australian artistic gymnast
  • Frank Jefferis (1884-1938), English footballer
  • Major-General Sir Millis Rowland Jefferis KBE, MC (1899-1963), English General, founder of a special unit of the British Ministry of Supply known as MD1
  • Herbert Jefferis Pennock (1894-1948), left-handed Major League Baseball pitcher


  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 2015, December 8) . Retrieved from
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