The Peir surname is thought to have evolved independently from two distinct sources. Some instances of the name come from the Middle English "le pere," from the Old English "le-ap," meaning "a basket;" in which case the name was occupational
for a basket maker. Other instances of the name come from the Old English "hle-apere," meaning a "dancer," "runner," or "courier," and the name would have been either occupational or nickname.
Early Origins of the Peir family
The surname Peir was first found in Warwickshire
where they held a family seat
as Lords of the Manor. After the Battle of Hastings in 1066, William, Duke of Normandy
, having prevailed over King Harold, granted most of Britain to his many victorious Barons. It was not uncommon to find a Baron
, or a Bishop, with 60 or more Lordships scattered throughout the country. These he gave to his sons, nephews and other junior lines of his family and they became known as under-tenants. They adopted the Norman system of surnames which identified the under-tenant with his holdings so as to distinguish him from the senior stem of the family. After many rebellious wars between his Barons, Duke William, commissioned a census of all England
to determine in 1086, settling once and for all, who held which land. He called the census the Domesday Book
Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
indicating that those holders registered would hold the land until the end of time. The first on record of the name appears to be Robert Lepere, who was listed as a Templar in Warwickshire
Early History of the Peir family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Peir research.Another 59 words (4 lines of text) covering the years 1200, 1295 and 1713 are included under the topic Early Peir History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Peir Spelling Variations
Before the last few hundred
years the English language had no fixed system of spelling rules. For that reason, spelling variations
occurred commonly in Anglo Norman surnames. Over the years, many variations of the name Peir were recorded, including Leeper, Leaper, Leper, LePere, Lepere, Lepper, Leiper, Leyper, Peer, Pere, Peir and many more.
Early Notables of the Peir family (pre 1700)
Outstanding amongst the family at this time was William Peer (died 1713), English actor. He owes the survival of his name to a humorous mention of his career... Another 27 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Peir Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Peir family to the New World and Oceana
The unstable environment in England
at this time caused numerous families to board ships and leave in search of opportunity and freedom from persecution abroad in places like Ireland
, and particularly the New World. The voyage was extremely difficult, however, and only taken at great expense. The cramped conditions and unsanitary nature of the vessels caused many to arrive diseased and starving, not to mention destitute from the enormous cost. Still opportunity in the emerging nations of Canada and the United States was far greater than at home and many went on to make important contributions to the cultures of their adopted countries. An examination of many early immigration records reveals that people bearing the name Peir arrived in North America very early:
Peir Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
- John Peir, who landed in Virginia in 1717 CITATION[CLOSE]
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)
Peir Family Crest Products
- ^ Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
- ^ 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)