Palma History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

From the ancient and beautiful Italian island of Sicily emerged a variety of distinguished names, including the notable surname Palma. Although people were originally known only by a single name, it became necessary for people to adopt a second name to identify themselves as populations grew and travel became more frequent. The process of adopting fixed hereditary surnames was not complete until the modern era, but the use of hereditary family names in Italy began in the 10th and 11th centuries. Italian hereditary surnames were developed according to fairly general principles and they were characterized by a profusion of derivatives coined from given names. Although the most traditional type of family name found in the region of Sicily is the patronymic surname, which is derived from the father's given name, local surnames are also found. Local names, which are the least frequent of the major types of surnames found in Italy, are derived from a place-name where the original bearer once resided or held land. Often Italian local surnames bore the prefix "di," which signifies emigration from one place to another, and does not necessarily denote nobility. The Palma family lived in the territory of Palma, which is in Campania, in the province of Naples. The surname Palma was also a patronymic surname, derived from the personal name Palma, which was common in medieval times. The personal name Palma literally means palm, which is the Christian symbol of peace.

Early Origins of the Palma family

The surname Palma was first found in Naples, (Italian: Napoli, Latin: Neapolis) former capital of the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies in southern Italy. Research shows that records of the Palma family date back to 1190, with Tancredi and Riccardo di Palma, who took their surname from the territory of Palma, near Naples, which they possessed at this time. Naples shares with Instanbul the claim to be the most beautiful city in Europe. Naples has 237 Churches and 57 Chapels. The National Museum and other galleries contain riches in art and artifacts. In those ancient times only persons of rank, the podesta, clergy, city officials, army officers, artists, landowners were entered into the records. To be recorded at this time, at the beginning of recorded history, was of itself a great distinction and indicative of noble ancestry. The first record of this illustrious family was Trancredi di Riccardi di Palma. Tandcredi or Tandred was a Norman Prince, son of Robert Guiscard who held most of southern Italy in 1070. Trancred embarked on the first Crusade and was also a Prince of the Holy Land and may have adopted the name Palma from the symbol of the Crusade.

Early History of the Palma family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Palma research. Another 122 words (9 lines of text) covering the years 1280, 1310, 1320, 1644, 1664, 1730, 1480, 1528, 1754, 1834 and 1814 are included under the topic Early Palma History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Palma Spelling Variations

Spelling variations of this family name include: Palma, Palmer, Palmeri, Palmaro, Palmerini, Palerino and many more.

Early Notables of the Palma family (pre 1700)

Prominent among bearers of this surname in early times was Guido Palmerucci, born in Gubbio in 1280, a famous painter and Marco Palmazzano, also a painter, renowned for his talents during the mid 15th century. He was known for producing numerous copies of each work, such as his "Christ Carrying the Cross", of which he made 12 known copies. The Master of San Martino alla Palma (formerly called the Amico di Daddi) ( fl. 1310-1320) was a Florentine painter active during the first third of the fourteenth century...
Another 86 words (6 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Palma Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Palma Ranking

In the United States, the name Palma is the 2,909th most popular surname with an estimated 9,948 people with that name. [1] However, in France, the name Palma is ranked the 6,561st most popular surname with an estimated 1,000 - 1,500 people with that name. [2]


United States Palma migration to the United States +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Palma Settlers in United States in the 16th Century
  • Antonio De Palma who arrived in Espanola in 1512
  • Juan De Palma who immigrated to Honduras in 1593
Palma Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Antonio De Palma, who arrived in Espanola in 1812 [3]
  • Hernando De Palma, who arrived in America in 1812 [3]
  • Marcos De Palma, who arrived in America in 1812 [3]
  • Martin De Palma, who landed in America in 1812 [3]
  • Francisco De Palma, who landed in America in 1813 [3]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Palma Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • Vito Palma, who arrived in New York on the "SS Italia" from Naples on 2 March 1913

West Indies Palma 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. [4]
Palma Settlers in West Indies in the 16th Century
  • Luis De Palma who settled in the Dominican Republic in 1565

Contemporary Notables of the name Palma (post 1700) +

  • Silvestro Palma (1754-1834), sometimes De Palma or Da Palma, an Italian composer, primarily of operas
  • Sergio Víctor Palma (1956-2021), Argentine boxer, Super Bantamweight Boxing Champion (1979-1982)
  • Manuel Ricardo Palma (1833-1919), Peruvian author, scholar and librarian
  • Jorge Manuel d’Abreu Palma (b. 1950), Portuguese singer and songwriter
  • Tomás Estrada Palma, former President of Cuba
  • José Palma (1876-1903), poet and soldier from Manilla
  • Pierode Palma, musical performer during the mid 20th century
  • Sylvana Palma Tomaselli (b. 1957), birth name of Sylvana Palma Windsor, Countess of St Andrews, descendant of Giuseppe Tomaselli; Newfoundland-born wife of George, Earl of St Andrews
  • Luigi Palma di Cesnola (1832-1904), It/Am army officer and archaeologist
  • Palma Vecchio (1480-1528), Italian painter of the Venetian school


  1. ^ https://namecensus.com/most_common_surnames.htm
  2. ^ http://www.journaldesfemmes.com/nom-de-famille/nom/
  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. ^ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/British_West_Indies


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