Perkins History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The rich and ancient history of the Perkins family name dates back to the time of the Anglo-Saxon tribes of Britain. It comes 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 Perkins 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 Perkins family

The surname Perkins 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 Perkins family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Perkins 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 Perkins History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Perkins Spelling Variations

Spelling variations in names were a common occurrence before English spelling was standardized a few hundred years ago. In the Middle Ages, even the literate spelled their names differently as the English language incorporated elements of French, Latin, and other European languages. Many variations of the name Perkins have been found, including Perkins, Perkin, Perkyns, Perkens, Perkynn and others.

Early Notables of the Perkins 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 Perkins Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Perkins World Ranking

In the United States, the name Perkins is the 161st most popular surname with an estimated 144,246 people with that name. [4] However, in Australia, the name Perkins is ranked the 359th most popular surname with an estimated 10,121 people with that name. [5] And in New Zealand, the name Perkins is the 574th popular surname with an estimated 1,238 people with that name. [6] The United Kingdom ranks Perkins as 344th with 18,059 people. [7]


United States Perkins migration to the United States +

Families began migrating abroad in enormous numbers because of the political and religious discontent in England. Often faced with persecution and starvation in England, the possibilities of the New World attracted many English people. Although the ocean trips took many lives, those who did get to North America were instrumental in building the necessary groundwork for what would become for new powerful nations. Among the first immigrants of the name Perkins, or a variant listed above to cross the Atlantic and come to North America were :

Perkins Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Francis Perkins who arrived in Virginia in 1607
  • Francis Perkins, who landed in Jamestown, Va in 1607 [8]
  • John Perkins, who arrived in Boston in 1630
  • John Perkins, who landed in Boston, Massachusetts in 1631 [8]
  • William Perkins, who arrived in Ipswich, Massachusetts in 1633 [8]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Perkins Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Thomas Perkins, who landed in Virginia in 1701 [8]
  • Peter Perkins, who landed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1746 [8]
  • John Perkins, who settled in Maryland in 1757
  • Richard Perkins, who arrived in New York in 1791 [8]
  • George Perkins, who arrived in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1794 [8]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Perkins Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Samuel Perkins, aged 25, who arrived in West Indies in 1812 [8]
  • Nathaniel H Clifford Perkins, aged 27, who arrived in Delaware in 1812 [8]
  • Betsey Perkins, who arrived in New York in 1823 [8]
  • Elizabeth Perkins, who landed in New York in 1823 [8]
  • Charlotte Perkins, who arrived in New York in 1823 [8]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Perkins Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • Mr. Samuel Perkins, (b. 1865), aged 38, Cornish miner, from Scilly, Cornwall, UK travelling aboard the ship "New York" arriving at Ellis Island, New York on 24th May 1903 en route to Leadville, Colorado, USA [9]

Canada Perkins migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Perkins Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century
  • Mr. Robert Perkins U.E. who arrived in Port Roseway, [Shelbourne], Nova Scotia on October 26, 1783 was passenger number 232 aboard the ship "HMS Clinton", picked up on September 28, 1783 at Staten Island, New York, USA [10]
  • Mr. Azariah Perkins U.E. who settled in Canada c. 1784 [10]
  • Mr. Azariah Perkins U.E. (b. 1742) who settled in Kings County, New Brunswick c. 1784 he died in 1825 [10]
  • Mr. Isaac Perkins U.E. who settled in Canada c. 1784 [10]

Australia Perkins migration to Australia +

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

Perkins Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Miss Mary Perkins, English convict who was convicted in London, England for 7 years, transported aboard the "Broxbournebury" in January 1814, arriving in New South Wales, Australia [11]
  • Mr. John Perkins, (b. 1797), aged 22, British Convict who was convicted in London, England for life, transported aboard the "Coromandel" on 27th October 1819, arriving in Tasmania ( Van Diemen's Land) [12]
  • John Perkins, English convict from Surrey, who was transported aboard the "Asia" on October 22nd, 1824, settling in New South Wales, Australia [13]
  • Mr. Charles Perkins, British convict who was convicted in Coventry, England for life, transported aboard the "Bussorah Merchant" on 1st October 1829, arriving in Tasmania ( Van Diemen's Land) [14]
  • Mr. William Perkins, British convict who was convicted in Coventry, England for life, transported aboard the "Bussorah Merchant" on 1st October 1829, arriving in Tasmania ( Van Diemen's Land) [14]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

New Zealand Perkins migration to New Zealand +

Emigration to New Zealand followed in the footsteps of the European explorers, such as Captain Cook (1769-70): first came sealers, whalers, missionaries, and traders. By 1838, the British New Zealand Company had begun buying land from the Maori tribes, and selling it to settlers, and, after the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840, many British families set out on the arduous six month journey from Britain to Aotearoa to start a new life. Early immigrants include:

Perkins Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Mr. Thomas Perkins, Cornish settler travelling from Launceston aboard the ship "Mayflower" arriving in Invercargill, South Island, New Zealand on 20th May 1863 [15]
  • Mrs. Perkins, Cornish settler travelling from Launceston with 3 children aboard the ship "Mayflower" arriving in Invercargill, South Island, New Zealand on 20th May 1863 [15]
  • Mr. Perkins, American settler travelling from San Francisco aboard the ship "Nevada" arriving in Port Chalmers, Dunedin, Otago, South Island, New Zealand on 10th May 1871 [15]
  • John Perkins, aged 28, a plumber, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Golden Sea" in 1874
  • Henry Perkins, aged 22, a plumber, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Golden Sea" in 1874
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

West Indies Perkins 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. [16]
Perkins Settlers in West Indies in the 18th Century
  • Jonathan Perkins, who landed in Barbados in 1737 [8]

Contemporary Notables of the name Perkins (post 1700) +

  • Walter Ray Perkins (1941-2020), American football player and head coach for the New York Giants, the University of Alabama, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and Arkansas State University
  • Edward Joseph Perkins (1928-2020), American diplomat, United States Ambassador to Australia (1993-1996), 19th United States Ambassador to the United Nations (1992-1993)
  • Angier March Perkins (1799-1881), American engineer and inventor from Newbury Port, Massachusetts who emigrated to England in 1827 where he introduced a patented method of warming buildings by means of hot water circulating through small closed pipes
  • Brigadier-General Robert Meredith Perkins (1887-1960), American Instector-General, San Francisco Port of Embarkation (1946-1947) [17]
  • Joseph William "Pinetop" Perkins (1913-2011), American Blues musician, he received numerous honors during his lifetime including the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award, and induction into the Blues Hall of Fame
  • Corporal William Thomas Perkins Jr. (1947-1967), American Marine awarded the Medal of Honor
  • Private First Class Michael J. Perkins (1899-1918), American soldier awarded the Medal of Honor
  • Edwin Elijah Perkins (1889-1961), American who invented the powder drink mix Kool-Aid in 1927
  • George Clement Perkins (1839-1923), American politician, Governor of California (1880-1883)
  • Carl Lee Perkins (1932-1998), American rockabilly singer and songwriter
  • ... (Another 6 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Empress of Ireland
  • Mrs. Louise Maria Perkins (1878-1914), née Moss Canadian Third Class Passenger from London, Ontario, Canada who was traveling aboard the Empress of Ireland and died in the sinking [18]
  • Mr. Richard Henry William Perkins (1874-1914), Canadian Second Class Passenger from Toronto, Ontario, Canada who was traveling aboard the Empress of Ireland and died in the sinking [18]
HMS Hood
  • Mr. William G Perkins (b. 1921), English Marine serving for the Royal Marine from Ladywell Park, Catford, London, England, who sailed into battle and died in the sinking [19]
HMS Prince of Wales
  • Mr. W Perkins, British Ship Write 4th Class, who sailed into battle on the HMS Prince of Wales and survived the sinking [20]
  • Mr. Perkins, British Able Seaman, who sailed into battle on the HMS Prince of Wales and survived the sinking [20]
HMS Repulse
  • Mr. C Perkins, British Stoker 1st Class, who sailed into battle on the HMS Repulse and survived the sinking [21]
HMS Royal Oak
  • Reginald John Perkins (1922-1939), born in Beaminster, Dorsetshire, England, British Boy Telegraphist with the Royal Navy aboard the HMS Royal Oak when she was torpedoed by U-47 and sunk; he died in the sinking [22]
  • Ernest Edward George Perkins (1919-1939), born in Tottenham, London, England, British Stoker 2nd Class with the Royal Navy aboard the HMS Royal Oak when she was torpedoed by U-47 and sunk; he died in the sinking [22]
Monongah Mine
  • Mr. W. M. Perkins (b. 1879), African American coal miner who was in mine 8 at the Monongah mine on 6th December 1907 when it exploded and collapsed; he died [23]
RMS Lusitania
  • Mr. Edwin Perkins, English 1st Class Passenger from England, who sailed aboard the RMS Lusitania and died in the sinking [24]
RMS Titanic
  • Mr. Laurence Alexander Perkins (d. 1912), aged 22, English Telephone Steward from Southampton, Hampshire who worked aboard the RMS Titanic and died in the sinking [25]
USS Arizona
  • Mr. George Ernest Perkins, American Fireman First Class from Rhode Island, USA working aboard the ship "USS Arizona" when she sunk during the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on 7th December 1941, he died in the sinking [26]


The Perkins 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.


Suggested Readings for the name Perkins +

  • Ancestors of Charles Brush Perkins and Maurice Perkins by Charles Brush Perkins.
  • Genealogy and History of One Branch of the Perkins Family in America, Originating with Edward Perkins, Immigrants to America and to New Haven, Connecticut by Paul M. Perkins.

  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. ^ https://namecensus.com/most_common_surnames.htm
  5. ^ https://forebears.io/australia/surnames
  6. ^ https://forebears.io/new-zealand/surnames
  7. ^ https://www.surnamemap.eu/unitedkingdom/surnames_ranking.php?p=10
  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)
  9. ^ Cornwall Online Parish Clerks. (Retrieved 3rd May 2018). Retrieved from http://www.opc-cornwall.org/Resc/pdfs/emigration_ellis_island_1892_on.pdf
  10. ^ Rubincam, Milton. The Old United Empire Loyalists List. Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc, 1976. (Originally published as; United Empire Loyalists. The Centennial of the Settlement of Upper Canada. Rose Publishing Company, 1885.) ISBN 0-8063-0331-X
  11. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 3rd November 2020). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/broxbournebury
  12. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 12th March 2021). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/coromandel
  13. ^ State Library of Queensland. (Retrieved 2016, October 27) Asia 1 voyage to Van Diemen's Land, Australia in 1824 with 9 passengers. Retrieved from http://www.convictrecords.com.au/ships/asia/1824
  14. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 10th November 2020). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/bussorah-merchant
  15. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 17th October 2018). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html
  16. ^ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/British_West_Indies
  17. ^ Generals of World War II. (Retrieved 2014, March 26) Robert Perkins. Retrieved from http://generals.dk/general/Perkins/Robert_Meredith/USA.html
  18. ^ Commemoration Empress of Ireland 2014. (Retrieved 2014, June 17) . Retrieved from http://www.empress2014.ca/seclangen/listepsc1.html
  19. ^ H.M.S. Hood Association-Battle Cruiser Hood: Crew Information - H.M.S. Hood Rolls of Honour, Men Lost in the Sinking of H.M.S. Hood, 24th May 1941. (Retrieved 2016, July 15) . Retrieved from http://www.hmshood.com/crew/memorial/roh_24may41.htm
  20. ^ HMS Prince of Wales Crew members. (Retrieved 2014, April 9) . Retrieved from http://www.forcez-survivors.org.uk/biographies/listprincecrew.html
  21. ^ HMS Repulse Crew members. (Retrieved 2014, April 9) . Retrieved from http://www.forcez-survivors.org.uk/biographies/listrepulsecrew.html
  22. ^ Ships hit by U-boats crew list HMS Royal Oak (08) - (Retrieved 2018 February, 9th) - retrieved from https://uboat.net/allies/merchants/crews/ship68.html
  23. ^ Monongah Mining Disaster retrieved on 8th August 2021. (Retrieved fromhttps://usminedisasters.miningquiz.com/saxsewell/monongah.htm).
  24. ^ Lusitania Passenger List - The Lusitania Resource. (Retrieved 2014, March 7) . Retrieved from http://www.rmslusitania.info/lusitania-passenger-list/
  25. ^ Titanic Passenger List - Titanic Facts. (Retrieved 2016, July 13) . Retrieved from http://www.titanicfacts.net/titanic-passenger-list.html
  26. ^ Pearl Harbour: USS Arizona Casualties List Pearl Harbour December 7, 1941. (Retrieved 2018, July 31st). Retrieved from http://pearl-harbor.com/arizona/casualtylist.html


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