Perce History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The name Perce is of Anglo-Saxon origin and came from the baptismal name for the son of Peter. In the religious naming tradition surnames were bestowed in honor of religious figures or church officials. In Europe, the Christian Church was one of the most powerful influences on the formation of given names. Personal names derived from the names of saints, apostles, biblical figures, and missionaries are widespread in most European countries. In the Middle Ages, they became increasingly popular because people believed that the souls of the deceased continued to be involved in this world. They named their children after saints in the hope that the child would be blessed or protected by the saint.

Early Origins of the Perce family

The surname Perce was first found in Somerset where one of the first records of the family was listed with an early spelling of the name: Richard Perys, 1 Edward III (during the first year's reign of King Edward III.) The same rolls included Robert Peres; Ralph Peres; and Adam Peres. [1]

Some of the family were also found in Cornwall. "The barton house of Davidstowe, [in the parish of Davistow, Cornwall] which is now inhabited by labourers, and Trehane, now occupied by a farmer, were originally seats of the Pearse family, from whom, together with their estates, they passed in marriage to John Nicholls, Esq. Since that time Davidstowe has again returned to the Pearse family; and, together with the great tithes, is now the property of William Pearse, Esq.. whose residence is at Holwell." [2]

Early History of the Perce family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Perce research. Another 110 words (8 lines of text) covering the years 1520, 1548, 1615, 1667, 1661, 1667, 1622, 1691, 1674, 1726, 1630, 1694, 1697, 1714, 1719, 1510, 1603, 1629, 1691, 1772, 1845, 1625, 1699, 1612, 1645, 1690 and are included under the topic Early Perce History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Perce Spelling Variations

Before English spelling was standardized a few hundred years ago, spelling variations of names were a common occurrence. Elements of Latin, French and other languages became incorporated into English through the Middle Ages, and name spellings changed even among the literate. The variations of the surname Perce include Pearce, Pierce, Pierse, Pearse, Pears, Peerce, Peers, Peirse and many more.

Early Notables of the Perce family (pre 1700)

Distinguished members of the family include William Peeris ( fl. 1520), English chronicler, clerk in holy orders and secretary to Henry Algernon Percy, fifth earl of Northumberland. Stephen Perse (1548-1615), was founder of the Perse Grammar School at Cambridge and Fellow of Cambridge College. Sir Edmund Peirce or Pierse (died 1667), of Greenwich, Kent and Holborn, Middlesex, was an English politician, Member of Parliament for Maidstone 1661 to 1667...
Another 66 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Perce Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Perce family to Ireland

Some of the Perce family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 201 words (14 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Perce migration to the United States +

A great wave of immigration to the New World was the result of the enormous political and religious disarray that struck England at that time. Families left for the New World in extremely large numbers. The long journey was the end of many immigrants and many more arrived sick and starving. Still, those who made it were rewarded with an opportunity far greater than they had known at home in England. These emigrant families went on to make significant contributions to these emerging colonies in which they settled. Some of the first North American settlers carried this name or one of its variants:

Perce Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • William Perce, who arrived in Jamestown, Va in 1607 [3]
  • Jone Perce, who arrived in Jamestown, Va in 1624 [3]
  • Katherine Perce, who landed in Virginia in 1635 [3]
  • Phobe Perce, aged 18, who arrived in New England in 1635 [3]
  • Sebilla Perce, who arrived in Maryland in 1656 [3]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Perce Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Hester Perce, who arrived in Virginia in 1712 [3]
  • Thomas Perce, who landed in Virginia in 1714 [3]

Canada Perce migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Perce Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • James M Perce, who landed in Canada in 1840

Contemporary Notables of the name Perce (post 1700) +

  • Legrand Winfield Perce (1836-1911), American Republican politician, U.S. Representative from Mississippi 5th District, 1869-73 [4]
  • LeGrand W. Perce, American Democrat politician, Candidate for Pennsylvania State House of Representatives from Bedford County, 1960 [4]


  1. ^ Dickinson, F.H., Kirby's Quest for Somerset of 16th of Edward the 3rd London: Harrison and Sons, Printers in Ordinary to Her Majesty, St, Martin's Lane, 1889. Print.
  2. ^ Hutchins, Fortescue, The History of Cornwall, from the Earliest Records and Traditions to the Present Time. London: William Penaluna, 1824. Print
  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. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, November 17) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html


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