Show ContentsOrmsby History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

When the ancestors of the Ormsby family emigrated to England following the Norman Conquest in 1066 they brought their family name with them. They lived in Lincolnshire. The name, however, is a reference to Orme, Normandy. The family anciently claim decent from "the house of De Bayeux of Normandy. Roger de Bayhus, or Bayeux de Ormsby made grants at Ormsby to Osney Abbey, Oxford, as did Reginadl Bayhus." [1]

Early Origins of the Ormsby family

The surname Ormsby was first found in Lincolnshire at North Ormsby where the first record of the family was found. " A monastery for nuns and brethren of the Sempringham order, was founded here in the time of Stephen (reign 1092-1154), by William, Earl of Albemarle, and Gilbert, son of Robert de Ormesby." [2]

Early History of the Ormsby family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Ormsby research. Another 53 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Ormsby History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ormsby Spelling Variations

The English language only became standardized in the last few centuries. For that reason, spelling variations are common among many Anglo-Norman names. The shape of the English language was frequently changed with the introduction of elements of Norman French, Latin, and other European languages; even the spelling of literate people's names were subsequently modified. Ormsby has been recorded under many different variations, including Ormsby, Ormesby and others.

Early Notables of the Ormsby family (pre 1700)

More information is included under the topic Early Ormsby Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ormsby Ranking

In the United States, the name Ormsby is the 8,705th most popular surname with an estimated 2,487 people with that name. [3] However, in New Zealand, the name Ormsby is ranked the 770th most popular surname with an estimated 948 people with that name. [4]

Ireland Migration of the Ormsby family to Ireland

Some of the Ormsby family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 48 words (3 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

United States Ormsby migration to the United States +

To escape the uncertainty of the political and religious uncertainty found in England, many English families boarded ships at great expense to sail for the colonies held by Britain. The passages were expensive, though, and the boats were unsafe, overcrowded, and ridden with disease. Those who were hardy and lucky enough to make the passage intact were rewarded with land, opportunity, and social environment less prone to religious and political persecution. Many of these families went on to be important contributors to the young nations of Canada and the United States where they settled. Ormsbys were some of the first of the immigrants to arrive in North America:

Ormsby Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • John Ormsby, who landed in Maryland in 1641 [5]
  • Jacob Ormsby, who arrived in New England in 1677 [5]
Ormsby Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Clevell Ormsby, who arrived in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1746 [5]
  • Lawrence Ormsby, who arrived in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1746 [5]
Ormsby Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Robert Ormsby, who arrived in New York, NY in 1803 [5]
  • Henry Ormsby, who landed in Mississippi in 1850 [5]
  • P S Ormsby, who landed in San Francisco, California in 1851 [5]
  • Francis Ormsby, who landed in Savanna(h), Georgia in 1859 [5]
  • George, Catherine, James, John, Joseph, Robert, and William Ormsby, who all, who arrived in Philadelphia between 1840 and 1860

Australia Ormsby migration to Australia +

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

Ormsby Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • George Owen Ormsby a surveyor, who arrived in Kangaroo Island aboard the ship "Buffalo" in 1836 [6]
  • John Ormsby, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Condor" in 1851 [7]
  • Mr. Joseph Ormsby, British Convict who was convicted in Liverpool, Merseyside, England for 10 years, transported aboard the "Dudbrook" on 17th November 1852, arriving in Western Australia [8]

Contemporary Notables of the name Ormsby (post 1700) +

  • Eric Linn Ormsby (b. 1941), American poet, scholar, and man of letters
  • Stephen Ormsby (1759-1844), American (Irish born) politician, who was a U.S. Representative from Kentucky
  • John William Ormsby (1881-1952), English soldier, recipient of the Victoria Cross for deeds during WWI
  • John Ormsby (1829-1895), British nineteenth-century translator
  • Frank Ormsby (b. 1947), Irish poet
  • Sir Lambert Hepenstal Ormsby (b. 1903), President of Royal College of Surgeons

The Ormsby Motto +

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: Fortis qui prudens
Motto Translation: He is brave who is prudent.

  1. The Norman People and Their Existing Descendants in the British Dominions and the United States Of America. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0636-X)
  2. Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  3. "What are the 5,000 Most Common Last Names in the U.S.?".,
  4. "Most Common Last Names in New Zealand." Forebears,
  5. 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)
  6. State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) HMS BUFFALO 1836. Retrieved from
  7. State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) CONDOR 1851. Retrieved
  8. Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 23rd July 2021). Retrieved from on Facebook