Morriss History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
This old Welsh surname comes from the Latin personal name Mauritius, which means dark. In Britain, Maurice was the learned form of the name, while Morice was the common form. The surname Morris was likely also assumed as a surname after being a nickname for a dark or swarthy person.
Early Origins of the Morriss family
The surname Morriss 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.
Early History of the Morriss family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Morriss research. Another 115 words (8 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Morriss History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Morriss Spelling Variations
Although there are comparatively few Welsh surnames, they have a great many spelling variations. Variations of Welsh names began almost immediately after their acceptance within Welsh society. In the Middle Ages, it was up to priests and the few other people that recorded names in official documents to decide how to spell the names that they heard. Variations that occurred because of improper recording increased dramatically as the names were later transliterated into English. The Brythonic Celtic language of Wales, known by natives as Cymraeg, featured many highly inflected sounds that could not be properly captured by the English language. Spelling variations were, however, also carried out according to an individual's design: a branch loyalty within the family, a religious adherence, or even patriotic affiliations were all indicated by the particular variation of one's name. The spelling variations of the name Morriss have included Morris, Morriss, Moriss, Morrice, Morice, Moris and others.
Early Notables of the Morriss family (pre 1700)
Another 47 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Morriss Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Morriss family to Ireland
Some of the Morriss family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 68 words (5 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Morriss migration to the United States +
Many Welsh joined the great migrations to North America in the late 1800s and early 1900s. Like their Scottish and Irish neighbors, many Welsh families left their homeland hoping to find hope and prosperity in a land that the English did not exercise a tight rule over. Those Welsh immigrants that successfully traveled to North America went on to make significant contributions to the rapid development of both Canada and the United States in terms of the settling of land and the establishment of industry. They also added to the rich cultural heritage of both countries. An examination into the immigration and passenger lists has discovered a number of people bearing the name Morriss:
Morriss Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
- Amey Morriss, who arrived in Virginia in 1713 
- John Morriss, who landed in Virginia in 1713 
- Tho Morriss, who landed in Virginia in 1719 
- Eliza Morriss, who arrived in Virginia in 1719 
- Christian Morriss, who landed in North Carolina in 1763 
Morriss Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
- William Morriss, aged 46, who arrived in New York in 1804 
- Bridget Morriss, aged 14, who landed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1864 
- Catharine Morriss, aged 11, who arrived in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1864 
Morriss migration to Canada +
Some of the first settlers of this family name were:
Morriss Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
- Lewis Morriss, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1821
Morriss migration to Australia +
Emigration to Australia
followed the First Fleets
of convicts, tradespeople and early settlers. Early immigrants include:
Morriss Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
- Eliza Morriss, aged 20, a domestic servant, who arrived in South Australia in 1855 aboard the ship "Aliquis"
- Nancy Morriss, aged 24, a domestic servant, who arrived in South Australia in 1855 aboard the ship "Aliquis"
- Catherine Morriss, aged 27, a domestic servant, who arrived in South Australia in 1859 aboard the ship "North"
Morriss 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:
Morriss Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
- Emma Morriss, aged 22, a housemaid, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Douglas" in 1873
Contemporary Notables of the name Morriss (post 1700) +
- Frank E. Morriss (1927-2013), American BAFTA and two-time Academy Award nominated film and television editor, known for his work on Blue Thunder (1983) and Romancing the Stone (1984)
- Paul V. Morriss, American fighter pilot and flying ace in the U.S. Army Air Forces, during World War II, credited with 5 aerial victories
Related Stories +
- ^ 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)