Perryman History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The birthplace of the surname Perryman is Cornwall, a rugged peninsula in southwestern England that is noted for its strong Gaelic traditions. Even though the usage of surnames was common during the Middle Ages, all English people were known only by a single name in early times. The process by which hereditary surnames came to be used is intriguing. As the number of inhabitants of Europe swelled, people began to assume an extra name to avoid confusion and to further identify them. Under the Feudal System of government, surnames evolved and they often reflected life on the manor and in the field. Although nickname surnames were rare among the Cornish, they did occasionally adopt names that reflected the physical characteristics or other attributes of the original bearer of the name. The name Perryman is a nickname type of surname for a servant employed by someone named Perry. Perry is a derivative of the ancient Biblical name Peter, meaning rock.

Early Origins of the Perryman family

The surname Perryman was first found in Cornwall where they held a family seat as Lords of the Manor. By the 12th century the family had affected the Normanization of their surname to De Puryham, but it is more likely to be of Dumnonian origin, although undoubtedly that spelling is incorrect.

From Puryham the name became Perriam, and then Periam, and then Peryman, then Perriman. There is no evidence that the name Perryman has any connection whatsoever with the wine, perry, a maker or seller of perry. [1]

There is solid evidence, however, that Periam and Perryman are connected, both bearing a similar family name Coat of Arms from about the 15th century. This whole group of names are most likely connected with the Cornish St. Perran as we shall see later in this treatise.

Early History of the Perryman family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Perryman research. Another 235 words (17 lines of text) covering the years 1237, 1593, 1534, 1604 and 1551 are included under the topic Early Perryman History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Perryman Spelling Variations

Cornish surnames are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations. The frequent changes in surnames are due to the fact that the Old and Middle English languages lacked definite spelling rules. The official court languages, which were Latin and French, were also influential on the spelling of a surname. Since the spelling of surnames was rarely consistent in medieval times, and scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded rather than adhering to any specific spelling rules, it was common to find the same individual referred to with different spellings of their surname in the ancient chronicles. Moreover, a large number of foreign names were brought into England, which accelerated and accentuated the alterations to the spelling of various surnames. Lastly, spelling variations often resulted from the linguistic differences between the people of Cornwall and the rest of England. The Cornish spoke a unique Brythonic Celtic language which was first recorded in written documents during the 10th century. However, they became increasingly Anglicized, and Cornish became extinct as a spoken language in 1777, although it has been revived by Cornish patriots in the modern era. The name has been spelled Perryman, Peryman, Perriman, Periman, Perrieman, Perieman, Perreman, Pereman, Peryam, Perriam, Periam, Puryham and many more.

Early Notables of the Perryman family (pre 1700)

Another 36 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Perryman Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Perryman Ranking

In the United States, the name Perryman is the 2,541st most popular surname with an estimated 12,435 people with that name. [2]


United States Perryman migration to the United States +

Study of Passenger and Immigration lists has revealed that among early immigrants bearing the Perryman surname were:

Perryman Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • William Perryman, who settled in Nevis in 1670
Perryman Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • William Perryman, who arrived in New York in 1847 [3]
  • Mrs. Jane Perryman, (b. 1842), aged 44, Cornish settler departing from Liverpool aboard the ship "Aurania" arriving in California, USA on 12 April 1886 [4]
  • Miss Emily Perryman, (b. 1871), aged 15, Cornish settler departing from Liverpool aboard the ship "Aurania" arriving in California, USA on 12 April 1886 [4]
  • Miss Annie Perryman, (b. 1875), aged 11, Cornish settler departing from Liverpool aboard the ship "Aurania" arriving in California, USA on 12 April 1886 [4]
  • Mr. John Perryman, (b. 1876), aged 10, Cornish settler departing from Liverpool aboard the ship "Aurania" arriving in California, USA on 12 April 1886 [4]
Perryman Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • Mr. Henry Perryman, (b. 1872), aged 28, Cornish miner, from St Dennis, Cornwall, UK travelling aboard the ship "Oceanic" arriving at Ellis Island, New York on 14th March 1900 en route to Red Jacket, Michigan, USA [5]
  • Mr. James Perryman, (b. 1868), aged 35, Cornish miner travelling aboard the ship "St Paul" arriving at Ellis Island, New York on 28th June 1903 en route to Houghton, Michigan, USA [5]
  • Mr. Frederick Perryman, (b. 1882), aged 21, Cornish tin miner, from Truru, Cornwall, UK travelling aboard the ship "Campania" arriving at Ellis Island, New York on 7th November 1903 en route to Houghton, Michigan, USA [5]

Australia Perryman migration to Australia +

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

Perryman Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Mr. James Perryman, (b. 1780), aged 36, English bricklayer who was convicted in Somerset, England for life for stealing, transported aboard the "Atlas" on 16th January 1816, arriving in New South Wales, Australia [6]
  • Mr. John Perryman, British Convict who was convicted in London, England for life , transported aboard the "Commodore Hayes" in April 1823, arriving in Tasmania ( Van Diemen's Land) [7]
  • William Perryman, English convict from Somerset, who was transported aboard the "Argyle" on March 5th, 1831, settling in Van Diemen's Land, Australia [8]
  • James Perryman, English convict from Maidstone, Kent, who was transported aboard the "Anson" on September 23, 1843, settling in Van Diemen's Land, Australia [9]
  • Zachariah Perryman, aged 24, a farm servant, who arrived in South Australia in 1849 aboard the ship "Cheapside" [10]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

New Zealand Perryman 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:

Perryman Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • John Perryman, aged 22, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Dilharree" in 1875

West Indies Perryman 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. [11]
Perryman Settlers in West Indies in the 17th Century
  • Richard Perryman with his wife and daughter Anne who settled in Barbados in 1679

Contemporary Notables of the name Perryman (post 1700) +

  • Emmett Key Perryman (1888-1966), American professional baseball player
  • Louis Byron Perryman (1941-2009), American character actor
  • Robert Lewis Perryman (b. 1964), former professional American football running back
  • Mike Van Perryman, American Democratic Party politician, Alternate Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Illinois, 1924 [12]
  • Stephen Peter Perryman (b. 1955), former English cricketer
  • Stephen John "Steve" Perryman (b. 1951), English football player and manager, awarded the MBE
  • Jill Perryman (b. 1933), Australian stage actress and singer
  • Sir Michael Perryman Heathcote (1927-2007), 11th Baronet of Hursley

HMAS Sydney II
  • Mr. Richard Severn Perryman (1919-1941), Australian Able Seaman from Leederville, Western Australia, Australia, who sailed into battle aboard HMAS Sydney II and died in the sinking [13]
HMS Cornwall
  • Horace Claude Perryman (d. 1942), British Corporal aboard the HMS Cornwall when she was struck by air bombers and sunk; he died in the sinking [14]


  1. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  2. ^ https://namecensus.com/most_common_surnames.htm
  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. ^ Cornwall Online Parish Clerks. (Retrieved 2018, April 30). Emigrants to New York 1820 - 1891 [PDF]. Retrieved from http://www.opc-cornwall.org/Resc/pdfs/emigration_new_york_1820_1891.pdf
  5. ^ Cornwall Online Parish Clerks. (Retrieved 3rd May 2018). Retrieved from http://www.opc-cornwall.org/Resc/pdfs/emigration_ellis_island_1892_on.pdf
  6. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 14th July 2020). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/atlas
  7. ^ Convict Records of Australia (Retrieved 4th March 2021, retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/commodore-hayes)
  8. ^ State Library of Queensland. (Retrieved 2015, January 8) Argyle voyage to Van Diemen's Land, Australia in 1831 with 251 passengers. Retrieved from http://www.convictrecords.com.au/ships/argyle/1831
  9. ^ State Library of Queensland. (Retrieved 2015, January 8) Anson voyage to Van Diemen's Land, Australia in 1843 with 499 passengers. Retrieved from http://www.convictrecords.com.au/ships/anson/1843
  10. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) The CHEAPSIDE 1849. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1849Cheapside.htm
  11. ^ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/British_West_Indies
  12. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, December 9) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html
  13. ^ HMAS Sydney II, Finding Sydney Foundation - Roll of Honour. (Retrieved 2014, April 24) . Retrieved from http://www.findingsydney.com/roll.asp
  14. ^ Force Z Survivors Crew List HMS Cornwall (Retrieved 2018, February 13th) - Retrieved from https://www.forcez-survivors.org.uk/biographies/listcornwallcrew.html#A


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