Reader History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The name Reader finds its origins with the ancient Anglo-Saxons of England. It was given to one who worked as a thatcher or one who thatches with reed. Occupational names that were derived from the common trades of the medieval era transcended European cultural and linguistic boundaries.

Early Origins of the Reader family

The surname Reader was first found in Norfolk where they held a family seat from early times, and the name is derived from the trade of reeder or thatcher, a trade in southern England of a person who made thatches for cottages.

Early History of the Reader family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Reader research. Another 119 words (8 lines of text) covering the years 1170, 1357, 1680 and 1665 are included under the topic Early Reader History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Reader Spelling Variations

The English language only became standardized in the last few centuries; therefore, spelling variations are common among early Anglo-Saxon names. As the form of the English language changed, even the spelling of literate people's names evolved. Reader has been recorded under many different variations, including Reeder, Reder, Reader, Readers and others.

Early Notables of the Reader family (pre 1700)

More information is included under the topic Early Reader Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Reader Ranking

In the United States, the name Reader is the 7,373rd most popular surname with an estimated 4,974 people with that name. [1]

Ireland Migration of the Reader family to Ireland

Some of the Reader family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 31 words (2 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Reader migration to the United States +

For many English families, the political and religious disarray that shrouded England made the far away New World an attractive prospect. On cramped disease-ridden ships, thousands migrated to those British colonies that would eventually become Canada and the United States. Those hardy settlers that survived the journey often went on to make important contributions to the emerging nations in which they landed. Analysis of immigration records indicates that some of the first North American immigrants bore the name Reader or a variant listed above:

Reader Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • John Reader, who settled in Boston Massachusetts in 1647
  • Thomas Reader, who landed in Maryland in 1665 [2]
  • Francis Reader, who landed in Maryland in 1673 [2]
  • Martha Reader, aged 19, who landed in Maryland in 1683 [2]
Reader Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Henry Reader, who landed in America in 1804 [2]
  • Edwin Reader, who arrived in America in 1804 [2]
  • Samuel Lee Reader, aged 23, who arrived in Louisiana in 1813 [2]
  • John Reader, who arrived in New York in 1831 [2]
  • John, Joseph, and Thomas Reader and his wife Elizabeth, who all, who arrived in Philadelphia in 1820 and 1850
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Canada Reader migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Reader Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century

Australia Reader migration to Australia +

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

Reader Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Frederick Reader, English convict from Sussex, who was transported aboard the "Albion" on May 17, 1823, settling in Van Diemen's Land, Australia [4]
  • James Reader, aged 29, a labourer, who arrived in South Australia in 1860 aboard the ship "Grand Trianon"

New Zealand Reader 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:

Reader Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Rachel Reader, aged 43, a domestic servant, who arrived in Nelson, New Zealand aboard the ship "Adamant" in 1874 [5]
  • Emma Reader, aged 10, who arrived in Nelson, New Zealand aboard the ship "Adamant" in 1874 [5]

Contemporary Notables of the name Reader (post 1700) +

  • Willard Stanton Reader (b. 1871), American Republican politician, Member of Pennsylvania State House of Representatives from Beaver County 2nd District; Elected 1924, 1926 [6]
  • Peter L. Reader (b. 1913), American politician, Delegate to Alaska State Constitutional Convention, 1955-56 [6]
  • Melva P. Reader, American Republican politician, Alternate Delegate to Republican National Convention from Pennsylvania, 1964 [6]
  • Louis M. Reader, American politician, Candidate for Mayor of Dobbs Ferry, New York, 1955 [6]
  • George W. Reader, American politician, Candidate for New York State Senate 51st District, 1936 [6]
  • George H. Reader (b. 1853), American Republican politician, Member of Michigan State House of Representatives from Mason County, 1887-88 [6]
  • Frank S. Reader, American Republican politician, Alternate Delegate to Republican National Convention from Pennsylvania, 1884 [6]
  • Frank E. Reader, American Republican politician, Common Pleas Court Judge in Pennsylvania 36th District, 1921-29 [6]
  • W H Ralph Reader (1903-1982), English officer who was awarded CBE (1959) and MBE (Military Division) for service in RAF Intelligence
  • Josiah "Joe" Reader (1866-1954), English football goalkeeper and coach
  • ... (Another 3 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

HMS Dorsetshire
  • Harold George Reader (d. 1945), British Able Seaman aboard the HMS Dorsetshire when she was struck by air bombers and sunk; he died in the sinking [7]


  1. ^ https://namecensus.com/most_common_surnames.htm
  2. ^ 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)
  3. ^ Seary E.R., Family Names of the Island of Newfoundland, Montreal: McGill's-Queen's Universtity Press 1998 ISBN 0-7735-1782-0
  4. ^ State Library of Queensland. (Retrieved 2016, October 27) Albion voyage to Van Diemen's Land, Australia in 1823 with 200 passengers. Retrieved from http://www.convictrecords.com.au/ships/albion/1823
  5. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 17th October 2018). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html
  6. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, November 17) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html
  7. ^ Force Z Survivors HMS Dorsetshire Crew List, (Retrieved 2018, February 13th), https://www.forcez-survivors.org.uk/biographies/listdorsetshirecrew.html


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