Pomeroy History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The name Pomeroy was brought to England in the great wave of migration following the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Pomeroy family lived in Devon. Their name, however, is a reference to La Pommeroie, Normandy, the family's place of residence prior to the Norman Conquest of England in 1066. The name of this place translates as from the French as apple orchard. [1]

More specifically, the name is derived from "pomme-roi, a kind of apple, the royal apple, king's apple, or king of apples; a name probably given to a gardener for his skill in raising them, or a name of place where such apples were raised." [2]

The family was the "Castellans of La Pommeraie, Normandy (De Gerville, Anciens Châteaux de la Manche). 'A fragment of this Norman stronghold still remains in the cinglais, not far from Falaise. It is there called Château Ganne Ganelon's Castle, a name given in Normandy to more than one such ruin. It is really the Château de la Pommeraie, and here, no doubt, was the original pomeraie or orchard which gave name to the stronghold and the family." [3]

Early Origins of the Pomeroy family

The surname Pomeroy was first found in Devon where "the ancient family of Pomeray founded by the Norman continued to possess the Barony of Berry, until the attainder of Sir Thomas Pomeroy in the reign of Edward VI. They had intermarried with heiresses or co-heiresses of Vallefort, Merton, Bevill, and Denzell. Younger branches were of Sandridge and Ingeston, Devon, and of Pallice, co. Cork." [4]

"The parish of S. Sauveur de la Pommeraye, in the department of La Manche, Normandy, gave name to a great family mentioned in Domesday Book, and by Brompton; and they in turn conferred it upon Berry Pomeroy, co. Devon." [5]

Another source provides more details: " Two of the name-Hugue and Raoul de la Pomeraie are on the Dives Roll. Ralph appears in Domesday [Book] holding sixty manors de Wife; all of them, with only two exceptions, in Devonshire, where Berry Pomeroy became the head of his barony. He first built the castle whose ruins nobly crown its precipitous hill. His successor, William, had a younger son named Ethelward, who founded Buckfast Abbey in the time of Henry I., and whose name suggests an alliance with some Saxon house, but the earlier intermarriages are not given. The elder brother, Henry, ' taking heart at the imprisonment of Richard I. by the Duke of Austria,' declared for Prince John, garrisoned his castle of Berry-Pomeroy, and chased the monks from the famous Cornish monastery of 'St. Michael of the danger of the sea,' which had been granted by the Earl of Mortaine in 1070 as a cell to its namesake in Normandy." [3]

"Pomeroy is an ancient Devonshire surname, and the name of a parish (Berry Pomeroy) in that county. From the Conquest to the reign of Edward VI. the powerful and ennobled family of De Pomeroy owned the manor of Berry Pomeroy and much other property in that county." [6]

"The Castle of Berry Pomeroy, shrouded in dense woods on a bold bluff above a feeder of the little river Hems, is the finest ruin left in Devon. The Berry naturally indicates the presence of some defensive works in early times; and perhaps Alric, its last Saxon owner, had his chief ' strength ' here, seeing that Ralph de Pomeroy, to whom it was given with fifty-eight other lordships by the Conqueror, built a castle at Berry, and made it the seat of his barony. A great family, and of wide-reaching influence, did the Pomeroys become ; and for nearly five centuries they continued in the front rank of Devonshire landowners, though they ceased to be summoned to Parliament in the closing years of the reign or Henry III. A few vicissitudes they had, but still they retained their estates, and no badge in Devon was held in greater honour than the Pomeroy lion, until the fatal day when Sir Thomas Pomeroy, the last Pomeroy lord of Berry, placed himself at the head of the Western Rebellion in the reign of Edward VI. ; and with the failure of the movement lost all his estates, though he saved his life. Berry then passed to the Seymours, in whom it still remains, probably by purchase." [7]

Early History of the Pomeroy family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Pomeroy research. Another 252 words (18 lines of text) covering the years 1100, 1114, 1102, 1347, 1416, 1446, 1442, 1496, 1473, 1503, 1566, 1547, 1529 and 1593 are included under the topic Early Pomeroy History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Pomeroy Spelling Variations

Endless spelling variations are a prevailing characteristic of Norman surnames. Old and Middle English lacked any definite spelling rules, and the introduction of Norman French added an unfamiliar ingredient to the English linguistic stew. French and Latin, the languages of the court, also influenced spellings. Finally, Medieval scribes generally spelled words according to how they sounded, so one person was often referred to by different spellings in different documents. The name has been spelled Pomeroy, Pomrey, Pomroy, Pomry and others.

Early Notables of the Pomeroy family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Sir John de la Pomeroy (1347-1416), who married Joan de Merton, daughter and co-heir of Richard de Merton and widow of John Bampfield of Poltimore; Edward I de Pomeroy (d.1446), grandson of Thomas the 5th son of Sir Henry by Joan Moels; Sir Richard de Pomeroy (1442-1496), Sheriff of Devon in 1473, a...
Another 61 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Pomeroy Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Pomeroy Ranking

In the United States, the name Pomeroy is the 4,468th most popular surname with an estimated 7,461 people with that name. [8]

Ireland Migration of the Pomeroy family to Ireland

Some of the Pomeroy family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. More information about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Pomeroy migration to the United States +

To escape the political and religious persecution within England at the time, many English families left for the various British colonies abroad. The voyage was extremely difficult, though, and the cramped, dank ships caused many to arrive in the New World diseased and starving. But for those who made it, the trip was most often worth it. Many of the families who arrived went on to make valuable contributions to the emerging nations of Canada and the United States. An inquiry into the early roots of North American families reveals a number of immigrants bearing the name Pomeroy or a variant listed above:

Pomeroy Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Eltweed Pomeroy, who settled with his wife in Nantasket in 1630
  • Eltweed Pomeroy, who landed in New England in 1633 [9]
  • Medad Pomeroy, who arrived in North Hampton, NH in 1660 [9]
  • Joseph Pomeroy, who arrived in New England in 1678 [9]
Pomeroy Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Seth Pomeroy (1706-1777) was an American gunsmith and mercenary soldier, who fought in the Revolutionary War, and was later a major general in the Massachusetts militia
Pomeroy Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Mary Pomeroy, aged 18, who landed in New York, NY in 1850 [9]
  • James Pomeroy, aged 20, who landed in New York, NY in 1850 [9]
  • G W Pomeroy, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1851 [9]
Pomeroy Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • Mrs. Pomeroy, (b. 1878), aged 23, American returning from Cornwall, UK travelling aboard the ship "Oceanic" arriving at Ellis Island, New York on 10th July 1901 en route to Pennsylvania, USA [10]
  • Mr. Theodore Pomeroy, (b. 1886), aged 15, English miner from Pensylva, Cornwall, UK travelling aboard the ship "Oceanic" arriving at Ellis Island, New York, USA on 15th August 1901 en route to Philipsberg, Pennsylvania, USA [10]
  • Mr. W H Pomeroy, (b. 1850), aged 51, Cornish miner from Pensylva, Cornwall, UK travelling aboard the ship "Oceanic" arriving at Ellis Island, New York, USA on 15th August 1901 en route to Philipsberg, Pennsylvania, USA [10]
  • Mr. Upton Clifford Pomeroy, (b. 1885), aged 20, Cornish smith from Callington, Cornwall, UK travelling aboard the ship "Cedric" arriving at Ellis Island, New York, USA on 13th August 1905 en route to the USA [10]

Canada Pomeroy migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Pomeroy Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century
  • Mr. Benjamin Pomeroy U.E. who settled in St. Andrews, Charlotte County, New Brunswick c. 1784 [11]
  • Mr. Richard Pomeroy U.E. who settled in St. Andrews, Charlotte County, New Brunswick c. 1784 [11]

Australia Pomeroy migration to Australia +

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

Pomeroy Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • William Pomeroy, aged 24, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Prince Regent" in 1849 [12]
  • Ann Pomeroy, aged 23, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Prince Regent" in 1849 [12]
  • Mary Ann Pomeroy, aged 1, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Prince Regent" in 1849 [12]
  • William Pomeroy, aged 24, a farm labourer, who arrived in South Australia in 1849 aboard the ship "Prince Regent" [12]
  • William Pomeroy, aged 27, a miner, who arrived in South Australia in 1858 aboard the ship "Confiance" [13]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

New Zealand Pomeroy 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:

Pomeroy Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Caroline Pomeroy, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Oliver Lang" in 1858
  • Mr. Philip J. Pomeroy, (b. 1850), aged 24, Cornish shipwright departing on 28th March 1874 aboard the ship "Hindostan" going to Bluff or Otago, New Zealand arriving in port on 13th May 1874 [14]
  • Mrs. Phillipa Pomeroy, (b. 1851), aged 23, Cornish settler departing on 28th March 1874 aboard the ship "Hindostan" going to Bluff or Otago, New Zealand arriving in port on 13th May 1874 [14]
  • Mr. John Pomeroy, (b. 1861), aged 17, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "Western Monarch" arriving in New Zealand in 1879 [15]

West Indies Pomeroy 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]
Pomeroy Settlers in West Indies in the 17th Century
  • James Pomeroy and Theophilus Pomeroy, who settled in Barbados in 1685

Contemporary Notables of the name Pomeroy (post 1700) +

  • Albert Nevin Pomeroy (1859-1927), American Republican politician, Chair of Franklin County Republican Party, 1889-92; Member of Pennsylvania State House of Representatives from Franklin County, 1895-96, 1901-02
  • Lee Harris Pomeroy (1932-2018), American architect, founding principal of the firm Lee Harris Pomeroy Architects
  • William S. Pomeroy, American politician, Member of Connecticut State House of Representatives from Bridgeport, 1837; U.S. Collector of Customs, 1854
  • William H. Pomeroy, American Republican politician, Candidate for Connecticut State House of Representatives from Meriden, 1934
  • William Culbertson Pomeroy (1851-1907), American politician, Member of Pennsylvania State House of Representatives from Juniata County, 1883-84, 1905-07
  • Wayne C. Pomeroy, American politician, Mayor of Mesa, Arizona, 1976-80
  • Warren Pomeroy, American politician, Member of Connecticut State House of Representatives from Somers, 1839
  • Thomas Pomeroy (1804-1878), American politician, Member of Pennsylvania State House of Representatives, 1846-47
  • Theodore Medad Pomeroy (1824-1905), American Republican politician, Cayuga County District Attorney, 1850-56; Member of New York State Assembly from Cayuga County 2nd District, 1857
  • Samuel Clarke Pomeroy (1816-1891), American Republican politician, Member of Massachusetts State House of Representatives, 1852-53;Mayor of Atchison, Kansas, 1858-59; U.S. Senator from Kansas, 1861-73
  • ... (Another 43 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)


The Pomeroy 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: Virtutis fortuna comes
Motto Translation: Fortune is the companion of valour


  1. ^ The Norman People and Their Existing Descendants in the British Dominions and the United States Of America. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0636-X)
  2. ^ Arthur, William , An Etymological Dictionary of Family and Christian Names. London: 1857. Print
  3. ^ Cleveland, Dutchess of The Battle Abbey Roll with some Account of the Norman Lineages. London: John Murray, Abermarle Street, 1889. Print. Volume 3 of 3
  4. ^ Burke, John Bernard, The Roll of Battle Abbey. London: Edward Churton, 26, Holles Street, 1848, Print.
  5. ^ Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  6. ^ Guppy, Henry Brougham, Homes of Family Names in Great Britain. 1890. Print.
  7. ^ Worth, R.N., A History of Devonshire London: Elliot Stock, 62, Paternoster Row, E.G., 1895. Digital
  8. ^ https://namecensus.com/most_common_surnames.htm
  9. ^ 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)
  10. ^ Cornwall Online Parish Clerks. (Retrieved 3rd May 2018). Retrieved from http://www.opc-cornwall.org/Resc/pdfs/emigration_ellis_island_1892_on.pdf
  11. ^ 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
  12. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) "PRINCE REGENT" 1849. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1849PrinceRegent.htm
  13. ^ South Australian Register Tuesday 30th November 1858. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) Confiance 1858. Retrieved http://www.theshipslist.com/ships/australia/confiance1858.shtml.
  14. ^ Cornwall Online Parish Clerks. (Retrieved 2018, April 30). Emigrants to other ports, 1872 - 84 [PDF]. Retrieved from http://www.opc-cornwall.org/Resc/pdfs/new_zealand_assisted.pdf
  15. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 26th March 2019). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html
  16. ^ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/British_West_Indies


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