Potter History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms 

The name Potter arrived in England after the Norman Conquest of 1066. It is a name for a maker of clay or metal storage vessels [1] which was in turn derived from the Latin word potus, meaning to drink. While this is the traditional understanding of the word, another reference states: "the term meant an apothecary or druggist." [2]

Early Origins of the Potter family

The surname Potter was first found in various shires and counties throughout Britain. Search for the earliest record of the name revealed Seuard le potter who was listed in 1172 in Lincolnshire. A few years later, Geoffrey Poter was listed in the Curia Regis Rolls of Essex in 1196 and John le Potier was listed in the Pipe Rolls of Essex in 1197. Lambert le Pottur was listed in the Curia Regis Rolls of Essex in 1214. [1] The Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 lists Michael le Potere and John le Pottere in London, and Ranulph le Potter in Essex. [3]

Important Dates for the Potter family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Potter research. Another 157 words (11 lines of text) covering the years 1204, 1557, 1577, 1642, 1591, 1646, 1592, 1664, 1594, 1678, 1614, 1661, 1674, 1747, 1656, 1656 and are included under the topic Early Potter History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Potter Spelling Variations

Norman surnames are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations. The frequent changes in surnames are largely due to the fact that the Old and Middle English languages lacked definite spelling rules. The introduction of Norman French to England, as well as the official court languages of Latin and French, also had pronounced influences on the spelling of surnames. Since medieval 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. The name has been spelled Potter, Pottar, Poter and others.

Early Notables of the Potter family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Barnaby Potter (1577-1642), English provost of Queen's College, Oxford, and bishop of Carlisle, was born at Kendal, Westmorland. He was the son of Thomas Potter, a mercer and alderman of Highgate Kendal. Christopher Potter (1591-1646), was also provost of Queen's College, Oxford, born in Westmorland. He was the nephew of Barnaby Potter. Hannibal Potter (1592-1664), was an English clergyman and college head in Oxford during the First English Civil War; Francis Potter (1594-1678), was an English clergyman, Biblical commentator, and experimentalist, an early...
Another 90 words (6 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Potter Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the Potter family to Ireland

Some of the Potter family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 61 words (4 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Potter migration to the United States

Many English families emigrated to North American colonies in order to escape the political chaos in Britain at this time. Unfortunately, many English families made the trip to the New World 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 stormy Atlantic. Despite these hardships, many of the families prospered and went on to make invaluable contributions to the development of the cultures of the United States and Canada. Early North American immigration records have revealed a number of people bearing the name Potter or a variant listed above:

Potter Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Henry Potter, who arrived in Virginia in 1619
  • Ann Potter, who landed in Virginia in 1624-1625 [4]
  • Vincent Potter, who settled in New England in 1635
  • William Potter and his wife Francis, who settled in Boston in 1635
  • Martha Potter, aged 20, who landed in Virginia in 1635 [4]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Potter Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Joseph Potter, who arrived in Virginia in 1702 [4]
  • Mary Potter, who arrived in Virginia in 1702 [4]
  • Matthew Potter, who landed in Virginia in 1711 [4]
  • Robert Potter, his wife and three children, who settled in Georgia in 1733
  • Richard Potter, who landed in America in 1760-1763 [4]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Potter Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Robert Potter, aged 24, who arrived in New York in 1812 [4]
  • Oliver Potter, aged 26, who arrived in New York in 1812 [4]
  • Johnson Potter, who landed in New York, NY in 1812 [4]
  • Henry Potter, who arrived in New York in 1822 [4]
  • Philip Potter, who landed in Washington County, Pennsylvania in 1827 [4]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Potter migration to Canada

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Potter Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century
  • Edward Potter, who arrived in Halifax, Nova Scotia in 1749-1752
  • Cornelius Potter, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1760
  • Levi Potter, who landed in Nova Scotia in 1760
  • Mr. Robert Potter U.E. who settled in Saint John, New Brunswick c. 1784 [5]
  • Mr. William Potter U.E. who settled in Eastern District [Cornwall], Ontario c. 1784 [5]
Potter Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • Mr. Thomas Potter, aged 24 who immigrated to Canada, arriving at the Grosse Isle Quarantine Station in Quebec aboard the ship "Minerva" departing from the port of Minerva, Galway but died on Grosse Isle in August 1847 [6]

Potter migration to Australia

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

Potter Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century

Potter 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:

Potter Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Mr. John Potter, (b. 1816), aged 25, British boot and shoe maker travelling from Gravesend aboard the ship "Lord William Bentinck" arriving in Wellington, New Zealand on 24th May 1841 [11]
  • Mr. H. Potter, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "Sir Edward Paget" arriving in Auckland, New Zealand on 25th May 1853 [12]
  • Mr. William Potter, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "Lord Ashley" arriving in Auckland, New Zealand on 14th October 1858 [11]
  • Mrs. Eliza Potter, British settler travelling from London with 3 children aboard the ship "Lord Ashley" arriving in Auckland, New Zealand on 14th October 1858 [11]
  • Mrs. H. Potter, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "Egmont" arriving in Auckland, New Zealand on 14th June 1858 [11]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Contemporary Notables of the name Potter (post 1700)

  • Earl H. Potter III (1947-2016), American university administrator of St. Cloud State University
  • Dean S. Potter (1972-2015), American free climber, alpinist, BASE jumper, BASEliner, and highliner who died during a wingsuit flight in Yosemite
  • Henry Potter (1881-1995), American Olympic sliver medalist for golf at the 1904 games
  • Brigadier-General Waldo Charles Potter (1885-1971), American Chairman of 2nd Section, War Department Manpower Board (1943-1945) [13]
  • John William Potter (1918-2013), United States federal judge
  • William Everett Potter (1905-1988), American Governor of the Panama Canal Zone from 1956 to 1960
  • Nels Potter (1911-1999), American baseball player
  • Van Rensselaer Potter (1911-2001), American biochemist and professor of oncology
  • John Lishman Potter (1834-1931), English-born, New Zealand goldminer, stonemason and builder
  • Thomas Rossell Potter (1799-1873), English antiquary, son of John Potter of West Hallam, Derbyshire
  • ... (Another 18 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Historic Events for the Potter family

Air New Zealand Flight 901
  • Mr. Michael Arthur Edwin Potter (1926-1979), New Zealander passenger, from Whangaparoa, Auckland, New Zealand aboard the Air New Zealand Flight 901 for an Antarctic sightseeing flight when it flew into Mount Erebus; he died in the crash [14]
Empress of Ireland
  • Master Willard Potter (1905-1914), Canadian Second Class Passenger from Toronto, Ontario, Canada who was traveling aboard the Empress of Ireland and died in the sinking [15]
  • Mr. WiIlliam Scott Potter (1873-1914), "Brigadier" Canadian Second Class Passenger from Toronto, Ontario, Canada who was traveling aboard the Empress of Ireland and died in the sinking [15]
Halifax Explosion
  • Mr. James  Potter (1858-1917), Canadian resident from Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada who died in the explosion [16]
HMAS Sydney II
  • Mr. Clyde Ashby Potter (1914-1941), Australian Acting Supply Petty Officer from Claremont, Western Australia, Australia, who sailed into battle aboard HMAS Sydney II and died in the sinking [17]
  • Mr. Alfred William Potter (1923-1941), Australian Ordinary Seaman from South Geelong, Victoria, Australia, who sailed into battle aboard HMAS Sydney II and died in the sinking [17]
HMS Prince of Wales
  • Mr. William Potter, British Able Seaman, who sailed into battle on the HMS Prince of Wales and died in the sinking [18]
  • Mr. E Potter, British Stoker 2nd Class, who sailed into battle on the HMS Prince of Wales and survived the sinking [18]
HMS Royal Oak
  • Thomas W. Potter, British Marine with the Royal Marine aboard the HMS Royal Oak when she was torpedoed by U-47 and sunk; he survived the sinking [19]
  • Stanley Potter (1920-1939), British Seaman with the Royal Navy aboard the HMS Royal Oak when she was torpedoed by U-47 and sunk; he died in the sinking [19]
  • Arthur Potter (1922-1939), British Boy 1st Class with the Royal Navy aboard the HMS Royal Oak when she was torpedoed by U-47 and sunk; he died in the sinking [19]
RMS Lusitania
  • Mr. Benjamin Potter, English Waiter from Horley, Surrey, England, who worked aboard the RMS Lusitania and died in the sinking [20]
  • Mr. Walter Potter, Canadian 2nd Class passenger from Calgary, Alberta, Canada, who sailed aboard the RMS Lusitania and died in the sinking [21]
RMS Titanic
  • Mrs. Lily Alexenia Potter, (née Wilson), aged 56, American First Class passenger from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania who sailed aboard the RMS Titanic and survived the sinking escaping in life boat 7 [22]

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Citations

  1. ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  2. ^ 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)
  3. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  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. ^ 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
  6. ^ Charbonneau, André, and Doris Drolet-Dubé. A Register of Deceased Persons at Sea and on Grosse Île in 1847. The Minister of Canadian Heritage, 1997. ISBN: 0-660-198/1-1997E (p. 51)
  7. ^ 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
  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) Arab voyage to Van Diemen's Land, Australia in 1834 with 230 passengers. Retrieved from http://www.convictrecords.com.au/ships/arab/1834
  10. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) RAJASTHAN 1838. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1838Rajasthan.htm
  11. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 17th October 2018). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html
  12. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 26th March 2019). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html
  13. ^ Generals of World War II. (Retrieved 2014, March 26) Waldo Potter. Retrieved from http://generals.dk/general/Potter/Waldo_Charles/USA.html
  14. ^ Mount Erebus, Memorial, Roll of Remembrance (Retrieved 2018, February 21st). Retrieved from http://www.erebus.co.nz/memorialandawards/rollofremembrance.aspx
  15. ^ Commemoration Empress of Ireland 2014. (Retrieved 2014, June 17) . Retrieved from http://www.empress2014.ca/seclangen/listepsc1.html
  16. ^ Halifax Explosion Book of Remembrance | Maritime Museum of the Atlantic. (Retrieved 2014, June 23) . Retrieved from https://maritimemuseum.novascotia.ca/what-see-do/halifax-explosion/halifax-explosion-book-remembrance
  17. ^ HMAS Sydney II, Finding Sydney Foundation - Roll of Honour. (Retrieved 2014, April 24) . Retrieved from http://www.findingsydney.com/roll.asp
  18. ^ HMS Prince of Wales Crew members. (Retrieved 2014, April 9) . Retrieved from http://www.forcez-survivors.org.uk/biographies/listprincecrew.html
  19. ^ 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
  20. ^ Lusitania Passenger List - The Lusitania Resource. (Retrieved 2014, March 7) . Retrieved from http://www.rmslusitania.info/lusitania-passenger-list/
  21. ^ Lusitania Passenger List - The Lusitania Resource. (Retrieved 2014, March 6) . Retrieved from http://www.rmslusitania.info/lusitania-passenger-list/
  22. ^ Titanic Passenger List - Titanic Facts. (Retrieved 2016, July 13) . Retrieved from http://www.titanicfacts.net/titanic-passenger-list.html
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