Perkin History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The earliest origins of the name Perkin date back to the time of the Anglo-Saxons. The name is derived from the baptismal name Peter. Baptismal names began to appear as surnames relatively late in the growth of the naming tradition. This is a little surprising, given the popularity of biblical figures in the Christian countries of Europe. Nevertheless, surnames derived from baptismal names grew in popularity during the Middle Ages, and have become one of the foremost sources for surnames. In this case the surname Perkin was originally derived from two elements; per a form of Peter and the suffix kin. The literal meaning of the surname is Little Peter, which denotes the son of Peter. [1]

Early Origins of the Perkin family

The surname Perkin was first found in Leicestershire. The name is traditionally "confined mostly to the southern half of England, being most numerous in Warwickshire, Worcestershire, and South Wales. " [2]

Early rolls listed the name in singular and plural forms: Edmund Perkyn 1327 in the Subsidy Rolls for Suffolk; Robert Parkyn 1327 in the Subsidy Rolls for Staffordshire; Walter Perkyns 1327 in the Subsidy Rolls for Worcester; and Maud Parkynes 1332 in the Subsidy Rolls for Warwickshire. [3]

Early History of the Perkin family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Perkin research. Another 138 words (10 lines of text) covering the years 1327, 1327, 1327, 1545, 1516, 1558, 1602, 1547, 1622, 1555, 1658, 1707, 1649 and 1696 are included under the topic Early Perkin History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Perkin Spelling Variations

Until quite recently, the English language has lacked a definite system of spelling rules. Consequently, Anglo-Saxon surnames are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations. Changes in Anglo-Saxon names were influenced by the evolution of the English language, as it incorporated elements of French, Latin, and other languages. Although Medieval scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded, so it is common to find one person referred to by several different spellings of his surname, even the most literate people varied the spelling of their own names. Variations of the name Perkin include Perkins, Perkin, Perkyns, Perkens, Perkynn and others.

Early Notables of the Perkin family (pre 1700)

Distinguished members of the family include John Perkins or Parkins (died 1545), an English jurist; he may have been the John Perkins who was a groom of the royal chamber in 1516. William Perkins (1558-1602) was English Puritan theologian and Sir Christopher Perkins or Parkins (1547-1622) was an English diplomatist, master of requests and dean of Carlisle. Another Christopher Perkins was elected scholar at Winchester...
Another 64 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Perkin Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

United States Perkin migration to the United States +

Searching for a better life, many English families migrated to British colonies. Unfortunately, the majority of them traveled under extremely harsh conditions: overcrowding on the ships caused the majority of the immigrants to arrive diseased, famished, and destitute from the long journey across the ocean. For those families that arrived safely, modest prosperity was attainable, and many went on to make invaluable contributions to the development of the cultures of the new colonies. Research into the origins of individual families in North America revealed records of the immigration of a number of people bearing the name Perkin or a variant listed above:

Perkin Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Edward Perkin, who arrived in Maryland in 1665 [4]
Perkin Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Mr. John Perkin, (b. 1851), aged 48, Cornish butcher, from Launceston, Cornwall, UK travelling aboard the ship "Lucania" arriving at Ellis Island, New York on 22nd July 1899 en route to Chicago, Illinois, USA [5]
Perkin Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • Mr. John C. Perkin, (b. 1869), aged 34, Cornish boot maker travelling aboard the ship "Philadelphia" arriving at Ellis Island, New York on 9th May 1903 en route to Toronto, Ontario, USA [5]

Australia Perkin migration to Australia +

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

Perkin Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Miss Mary Perkin, (b. 1806), aged 28, English dairy maid who was convicted in Devon, England for 7 years for receiving stolen goods, transported aboard the "Edward" on 23rd April 1834, arriving in Tasmania, (Van Diemen's Land), she died in 1886 [6]

Contemporary Notables of the name Perkin (post 1700) +

  • Richard "Dick" Scott Perkin (1906-1969), American entrepreneur who co-founded Perkin-Elmer, an optical design and consulting company in 1937, eponym of the Perkin lunar crater
  • William Henry Perkin (1860-1929), English organic chemist
  • Sir William Henry Perkin (1838-1907), English chemist, best known for his discovery of mauveine, at the age of 18
  • Edwin Graham Perkin (1929-1975), Australian journalist and newspaper editor
  • Perkin Warbeck (1474-1499), Flemish pretender to the English throne

RMS Titanic
  • Mr. John Henry Perkin (d. 1912), aged 22, English Third Class passenger from Holsworthy, Devon who sailed aboard the RMS Titanic and died in the sinking [7]

The Perkin 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: Simplex vigilum veri
Motto Translation: An honest one of the sentinels of truth.

  1. ^ Harrison, Henry, Surnames of the United Kingdom: A Concise Etymological Dictionary Baltimore: Geneological Publishing Company, 2013. Print
  2. ^ Guppy, Henry Brougham, Homes of Family Names in Great Britain. 1890. Print.
  3. ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  4. ^ 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)
  5. ^ Cornwall Online Parish Clerks. (Retrieved 3rd May 2018). Retrieved from
  6. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 25th January 2022). Retrieved from
  7. ^ Titanic Passenger List - Titanic Facts. (Retrieved 2016, July 13) . Retrieved from on Facebook