Leaver History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The ancient history of the Leaver name begins with the ancient Anglo-Saxon tribes of Britain. The name is derived from when the family resided in the township of Great Lever in Lancashire as well as in Little Lever the chapelry in the parish of Bolton in Lancashire. The Leaver family were industrialists and millers, perhaps giving rise to the modern city of Liverpool, from their own Leaver's Port.

Early Origins of the Leaver family

The surname Leaver was first found in Lancashire at Little Lever, now a large village in the Metropolitan Borough of Bolton in Greater Manchester. Great Lever, a township nearby "was long held by the family of Lever, but in the 6th year of Edward IV., Sir Rauff Assheton, Knt., sued out a 'write of right of warde' against Roger Lever, for the recovery of the manor, and obtained judgment against him at the assizes of Lancaster. Lever, however, with a number of dependants of his name, and a large concourse of persons, many of whom had been outlawed, riotously broke into Lancaster Castle, and carried off the record of recovery. Sir Rauff complaining of this outrage to the two houses of parliament, they ordained that the copy of the record which was annexed to his petition should be of the same force and efficacy as the original; and the justices thereupon ordered execution to issue, and reinstated him in the possession, which, notwithstanding, was not undisturbed until some time after. " [1]

The village's name was derived from the Old English word "laefre," which means "place where the rushes grow." [2] The first listing of the place name was found in 1212 when it was listed as Parua Lefre. [2] Nearby is Darcy Lever which was the ancestral home of the D'Arcy family since 1590.

Early History of the Leaver family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Leaver research. Another 86 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1521, 1577, 1551 and 1553 are included under the topic Early Leaver History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Leaver Spelling Variations

Until quite recently, the English language has lacked a definite system of spelling rules. Consequently, Anglo-Saxon surnames are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations. Changes in Anglo-Saxon names were influenced by the evolution of the English language, as it incorporated elements of French, Latin, and other languages. Although Medieval scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded, so it is common to find one person referred to by several different spellings of his surname, even the most literate people varied the spelling of their own names. Variations of the name Leaver include Lever, Leaver, Leyver and others.

Early Notables of the Leaver family (pre 1700)

Another 39 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Leaver Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Leaver migration to the United States +

Searching for a better life, many English families migrated to British colonies. Unfortunately, the majority of them traveled under extremely harsh conditions: overcrowding on the ships caused the majority of the immigrants to arrive diseased, famished, and destitute from the long journey across the ocean. For those families that arrived safely, modest prosperity was attainable, and many went on to make invaluable contributions to the development of the cultures of the new colonies. Research into the origins of individual families in North America revealed records of the immigration of a number of people bearing the name Leaver or a variant listed above:

Leaver Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Benjamin Leaver, aged 31, who landed in Missouri in 1848 [3]
  • Christian Leaver, who arrived in Iowa in 1879 [3]
  • Adam Leaver, who arrived in Iowa in 1879 [3]

Canada Leaver migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Leaver Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • Thomas Leaver, who landed in Victoria, British Columbia in 1862

Australia Leaver migration to Australia +

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

Leaver Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Mr. James Leaver, British Convict who was convicted in London, England for 7 years, transported aboard the "Asia" on 5th November 1835, arriving in Tasmania ( Van Diemen's Land)1836 [4]
  • William Leaver, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "David Malcolm" in 1849 [5]
  • William Leaver, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Simlah" in 1849 [6]
  • John Leaver, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Samuel Boddington" in 1851 [7]

Contemporary Notables of the name Leaver (post 1700) +

  • Henrietta Leaver (1916-1993), American crowned Miss America on September 7, 1935
  • Howard W. Leaver, American Republican politician, Candidate for Michigan State House of Representatives from Wayne County 18th District, 1958 [8]
  • Frederick E. Leaver, American politician, U.S. Consular Agent in Port Sydney, 1884 [8]
  • Frederick E. Leaver, American politician, U.S. Consular Agent in Lingan, 1884 [8]
  • C. B. Leaver, American Republican politician, Candidate in primary for Michigan State Senate 17th District, 1946, 1950, 1952 [8]
  • Noel Harry Leaver (1889-1951), English painter and teacher
  • James "Jimmy" Leaver (1898-1959), English professional footballer
  • Brett Leaver (b. 1970), former field hockey player from New Zealand
  • Huggy Leaver, British actor and former vocalist

HMS Repulse
  • Mr. Clifford Leaver, British Stoker 2ne Class, who sailed into battle on the HMS Repulse and died in the sinking [9]
  • Mr. Francis Samuel Leaver (1924-1942), British Marine, who sailed into battle on the HMS Repulse and survived the sinking, but was listed as missing presumed killed in the evacuation of Singapore in 1942 [9]


  1. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  2. ^ Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
  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. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 28th January 2020). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/asia/1835
  5. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) DAVID MALCOLM 1849. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1849DavidMalcolm.htm
  6. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) The SIMLAH 1849. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1849Simlah.htm
  7. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) SAMUEL BODDINGTON 1851. Retrieved http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1851SamuelBoddington.gif
  8. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2016, January 15) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html
  9. ^ HMS Repulse Crew members. (Retrieved 2014, April 9) . Retrieved from http://www.forcez-survivors.org.uk/biographies/listrepulsecrew.html


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