Merry History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Merry is a name that was brought to England by the ancestors of the Merry family when they migrated to the region after the Norman Conquest in 1066. The Merry family lived in Norfolk. Their name, however, is a reference to the family's place of residence prior to the Norman Conquest of England in 1066, Meret, Normandy.

Early Origins of the Merry family

The surname Merry was first found in Norfolk. However, some of the family were found at Stow-Maries in Essex. "This parish takes the adjunct to its name from the family of Marey, to whom the lands at one time belonged." [1]

Early History of the Merry family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Merry research. Another 74 words (5 lines of text) covering the years 1605, 1682 and 1660 are included under the topic Early Merry History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Merry Spelling Variations

Spelling variations in names were a common occurrence in the eras before English spelling was standardized a few hundred years ago. In the Middle Ages, even the literate regularly changed the spellings of their names as the English language incorporated elements of French, Latin, and other European languages. Many variations of the name Merry have been found, including Merry, Mirrey, Merrie, Mirrie and others.

Early Notables of the Merry family (pre 1700)

Another 34 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Merry Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Merry Ranking

In the United States, the name Merry is the 6,743rd most popular surname with an estimated 4,974 people with that name. [2]

Ireland Migration of the Merry family to Ireland

Some of the Merry family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 31 words (2 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Merry migration to the United States +

For many English families, the social climate in England was oppressive and lacked opportunity for change. For such families, the shores of Ireland, Australia, and the New World beckoned. They left their homeland at great expense in ships that were overcrowded and full of disease. Many arrived after the long voyage sick, starving, and without a penny. But even those were greeted with greater opportunity than they could have experienced back home. Numerous English settlers who arrived in the United States and Canada at this time went on to make important contributions to the developing cultures of those countries. Many of those families went on to make significant contributions to the rapidly developing colonies in which they settled. Early North American records indicate many people bearing the name Merry were among those contributors:

Merry Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Walter Merry, who landed in Boston, Massachusetts in 1634 [3]
  • Isaac Merry, who arrived in Virginia in 1636 [3]
  • John Merry moved to Virginia in 1643
  • Thomas Merry, who settled in Virginia in 1654
  • Ann Merry, who arrived in Maryland in 1663 [3]
Merry Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Jane Merry, who arrived in Virginia in 1714 [3]
  • Francis Merry, who landed in South Carolina in 1721 [3]
Merry Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Patrick Merry, aged 31, who arrived in Missouri in 1846 [3]
  • Eliza Merry, aged 32, who arrived in New York in 1849 [3]
  • J Merry, who landed in San Francisco, California in 1851 [3]
  • Felix, Joseph and Michael Merry all, who arrived in Philadelphia between 1840 and 1860

Canada Merry migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Merry Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century
  • William Merry, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1749
  • Edmund Merry, who landed in Nova Scotia in 1750

Australia Merry migration to Australia +

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

Merry Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Mr. Herman Merry, English convict who was convicted in Oxford, Oxfordshire, England for life, transported aboard the "Eden" on 27th August 1836, arriving in Tasmania ( Van Diemen's Land) [4]
  • Mary Merry, Scottish convict from Cumberland, who was transported aboard the "Angelina" on April 25, 1844, settling in Van Diemen's Land, Australia [5]

New Zealand Merry migration to New Zealand +

Emigration to New Zealand followed in the footsteps of the European explorers, such as Captain Cook (1769-70): first came sealers, whalers, missionaries, and traders. By 1838, the British New Zealand Company had begun buying land from the Maori tribes, and selling it to settlers, and, after the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840, many British families set out on the arduous six month journey from Britain to Aotearoa to start a new life. Early immigrants include:

Merry Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Mr. Merry, Australian settler travelling from Port of Hobart, Tasmania, Australia on board the ship "Don Pedro II" arriving in Dunedin, South Island, New Zealand on 5th November 1860 [6]
  • Mrs. Merry, Australian settler travelling from Port of Hobart, Tasmania, Australia on board the ship "Don Pedro II" arriving in Dunedin, South Island, New Zealand on 5th November 1860 [6]
  • Miss Merry, Australian settler travelling from Port of Hobart, Tasmania, Australia on board the ship "Don Pedro II" arriving in Dunedin, South Island, New Zealand on 5th November 1860 [6]

West Indies Merry migration to West Indies +

The British first settled the British West Indies around 1604. They made many attempts but failed in some to establish settlements on the Islands including Saint Lucia and Grenada. By 1627 they had managed to establish settlements on St. Kitts (St. Christopher) and Barbados, but by 1641 the Spanish had moved in and destroyed some of these including those at Providence Island. The British continued to expand the settlements including setting the First Federation in the British West Indies by 1674; some of the islands include Barbados, Bermuda, Cayman Island, Turks and Caicos, Jamaica and Belize then known as British Honduras. By the 1960's many of the islands became independent after the West Indies Federation which existed from 1958 to 1962 failed due to internal political conflicts. After this a number of Eastern Caribbean islands formed a free association. [7]
Merry Settlers in West Indies in the 17th Century
  • John Merry, aged 28, who landed in St Christopher in 1633 [3]
  • Mr. John Merry, Cornish settler from Withiel, Cornwall, (b. 1606), aged 28, British settler travelling from Plymouth, England aboard the ship "Margarett" arriving in St Christopher (Saint Kitts) on 1st March 1634 [8]

Contemporary Notables of the name Merry (post 1700) +

  • William Lawrence Merry (1842-1911), American politician, U.S. Minister to Salvador, 1897-1907; Nicaragua, 1897-1908; Costa Rica, 1897-1911
  • William Edgar Merry (1861-1941), American Republican politician, Member of South Dakota State House of Representatives 10th District, 1927-28
  • Thomas Henry Merry (1838-1907), American politician, Member of California State Assembly 10th District, 1880-81
  • Samuel Merry, American politician, Mayor of St. Louis, Missouri, 1833
  • Robert J. Merry, American Republican politician, Alternate Delegate to Republican National Convention from Ohio, 1956
  • Samuel Merry Jr., American politician, Member of New York State Assembly from Herkimer County, 1801-02
  • Lila Merry (b. 1877), American Republican politician, Alternate Delegate to Republican National Convention from Indiana, 1924
  • Lawrence L. Merry, American politician, Member of New York State Assembly from Herkimer County 2nd District, 1848
  • Jim Merry, American Republican politician, Member of Pennsylvania State House of Representatives 5th District; Elected 1980
  • J. T. Merry, American Republican politician, Delegate to Republican National Convention from Iowa, 1896
  • ... (Another 16 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)


  1. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  2. ^ https://namecensus.com/most_common_surnames.htm
  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 20th October 2021). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/eden
  5. ^ State Library of Queensland. (Retrieved 2014, November 27) Angelina voyage to Van Diemen's Land, Australia in 1844 with 171 passengers. Retrieved from http://www.convictrecords.com.au/ships/angelina/1844
  6. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 17th October 2018). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html
  7. ^ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/British_West_Indies
  8. ^ Cornish in the Caribbean (retrieved on 23rd September 2021). Retrieved from https://books.google.ca/books?id=gnSFDwAAQBAJ&pg=PA265&lpg=PA265&dq=wallen+lizard+cornwall&source=bl&ots=ARTnm6uRLv&sig=ACfU3U3ewicUaBkTuwC_Gpr0ic-


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