Show ContentsRech History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Rech is an ancient Norman name that arrived in England after the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Rech family lived in Hampshire. Their name, however, is a reference to Riche, in Lorraine, France, the family's place of residence prior to the Norman Conquest of England in 1066. [1]

Another equally valid derivation of the name suggests that it is patronymic, which means it was adapted from the first name of the original bearer's father. According to this version it comes from the Norman personal name Richard. Rech is a classic example of an English polygenetic surname, which is a surname that was developed in a number of different locations and adopted by various families independently.

The name was "probably an abbreviation of Richard, than an epithet implying wealth," [2] [3] but may have also have originated in France as "Riche was near Nancy, in Lorraine." [1]

"Rich is a characteristic west of England name, being most frequent in Somerset and Wiltshire. Those of Somerset are most numerous in the Bridgewater district, whilst those of Wiltshire are most frequent in the Malmesbury district. Le Rich was the name of a Hampshire family of the 14th century." [4]

Early Origins of the Rech family

The surname Rech was first found in Hampshire where the first on record include Edmund Rich, Saint Edmund (1175-1240) English churchman, who became Archbishop of Canterbury. He was born at Abingdon and his father's name was Edward or Reinald Rich. His father withdrew to the monastery of Evesham, or more probably to Ensham, near Oxford. [5]

Godwinus Dius, Le Riche was listed in the Pipe Rolls for Lincolnshire in 1177 and 1185. The same rolls included and entry for Mosse le Riche in Gloucestershire in 1195 and in Sussex we found William Riche in the Subsidy Rolls for 1296. Thomas filius Ricun, was listed in the Hundredorum Rolls in Huntingdonshire in 1274. [6]

Robert Rich (fl. 1240), was an English biographer, second son of Reginald and Mabel Rich of Abingdon, and younger brother of St. Edmund Rich, Archbishop of Canterbury.

Another source notes that the Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 also included three listings of the family with early spellings, all found in Oxfordshire: Henry le Ryche; Hugo le Ryche; and Bruman le Riche. [7]

Over in Somerset, Kirby's Quest listed William le Riche and John le Riche, Somerset, 1 Edward III (during the first year of King Edward III's reign.) [8]

Early History of the Rech family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Rech research. Another 111 words (8 lines of text) covering the years 1496, 1540, 1547, 1567, 1587, 1594, 1601, 1611, 1619, 1620, 1625, 1640, 1648, 1657, 1658, 1659, 1660, 1667, 1673, 1675, 1678, 1689, 1692, 1699 and 1714 are included under the topic Early Rech History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Rech 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 Rich, Riche, Richin, Riching, Richins, Richings and others.

Early Notables of the Rech family

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Richard Rich (c. 1496-1567), 1st Baron Rich, Lord Chancellor of England during the reign of King Edward VI; Barnabe Rich (1540-1620), English author and soldier; Sir Edwin Rich (c. 1594-1675), an English lawyer and politician who sat in the House of Commons in 1640; Robert Rich (1587-1658) 2nd Earl of Warwick, an English colonial administrator, admiral, and puritan; Robert Rich, 3rd Earl of Warwick (1611-1659); Jeremiah Rich (died c. 1660), an English stenographer who published...
Another 82 words (6 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Rech Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Rech Ranking

In the United States, the name Rech is the 16,033rd most popular surname with an estimated 2,487 people with that name. [9] However, in France, the name Rech is ranked the 7,519th most popular surname with an estimated 1,000 - 1,500 people with that name. [10]

Ireland Migration of the Rech family to Ireland

Some of the Rech 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 Rech 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 Rech or a variant listed above:

Rech Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Adam Rech, who arrived in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1787 [11]
Rech Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Juliana Rech, aged 21, who arrived in Brazil in 1848 [11]
  • Elisabetha Rech, aged 30, who landed in America in 1853 [11]
  • Johann Jakob Rech, who landed in North America in 1856 [11]
  • Nikolaus Rech, who landed in Brazil in 1857 [11]
  • Henrich Jakob Rech, who arrived in Brazil in 1859 [11]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Contemporary Notables of the name Rech (post 1700) +

  • Erich Rech (1921-1944), German Untersturmführer (Second Lieutenant) in the Waffen-SS during World War II, recipient of the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross
  • Heribert Rech (1950-2004), German lawyer and politician, Minister of the Interior in the German state of Baden-Württemberg since 2004
  • Louis Rech (1926-2012), Luxembourg politician and trade unionist
  • Bianca Rech (b. 1981), German footballer
  • Fernando Rech (b. 1974), Brazilian former footballer

The Rech 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: Garde la foy
Motto Translation: Keep the faith.

  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. Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  3. Arthur, William , An Etymological Dictionary of Family and Christian Names. London: 1857. Print
  4. Guppy, Henry Brougham, Homes of Family Names in Great Britain. 1890. Print.
  5. Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print
  6. Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  7. Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  8. Dickinson, F.H., Kirby's Quest for Somerset of 16th of Edward the 3rd London: Harrison and Sons, Printers in Ordinary to Her Majesty, St, Martin's Lane, 1889. Print.
  9. "What are the 5,000 Most Common Last Names in the U.S.?".,
  11. 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) on Facebook