Riggins History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The history of the Riggins family goes back to the ancient Anglo-Saxon culture of Britain. It is derived from the family living in Cumberland and Lancashire. This local name was derived from the local at the ridge or near a ridge. There are a variety of types of local surnames, some of which include: topographic surnames, which could be given to a person who lived beside any physical feature, such as a hill, stream, church or type of tree. Habitation names form the other broad category of surnames that were derived from place-names. They were derived from pre-existing names for towns, villages, parishes, or farmsteads. Other local names are derived from the names of houses, manors, estates, regions, and entire counties. The surname Riggins comes from the Old English word rigge, or the Old English word hrycg, both of which mean ridge. The earliest recorded members of the Riggins family lived in Lancashire.

Early Origins of the Riggins family

The surname Riggins was first found in Lancashire where they held a family seat from early times and their first records appeared on the census rolls taken by the ancient Kings of Britain to determine the rate of taxation of their subjects.

Early History of the Riggins family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Riggins research. Another 112 words (8 lines of text) covering the years 1567, 1410, 1635 and 1705 are included under the topic Early Riggins History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Riggins Spelling Variations

Until quite recently, the English language has lacked a definite system of spelling rules. Consequently, Anglo-Saxon surnames are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations. Changes in Anglo-Saxon names were influenced by the evolution of the English language, as it incorporated elements of French, Latin, and other languages. Although Medieval scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded, so it is common to find one person referred to by several different spellings of his surname, even the most literate people varied the spelling of their own names. Variations of the name Riggins include Rigge, Rigg, Riggs and others.

Early Notables of the Riggins family (pre 1700)

Distinguished members of the family include Robert Rigge, Rygge or Rugge (died 1410), English Chancellor of the University of Oxford, a native of Devonshire, and possibly a relative of Thomas de Bitton, bishop of Exeter. Ambrose Rigg or Rigge (1635-1705), was an English Quaker, born at Brampton in Westmorland. He and his companion Thomas Robertson went to Rochester, where...
Another 57 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Riggins Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Riggins family to Ireland

Some of the Riggins 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 Riggins migration to the United States +

Searching for a better life, many English families migrated to British colonies. Unfortunately, the majority of them traveled 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 ocean. For those families that arrived safely, modest prosperity was attainable, and many went on to make invaluable contributions to the development of the cultures of the new colonies. Research into the origins of individual families in North America revealed records of the immigration of a number of people bearing the name Riggins or a variant listed above:

Riggins Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • Charles Riggins, aged 25, arrived in New York in 1905 aboard the ship "Kaiser Wilhelm der Grosse" from Bremen, Germany [1]
  • John A. Riggins, aged 28, arrived in New York in 1906 aboard the ship "Philadelphia" from Southampton, England [2]
  • James Riggins, aged 26, arrived in New York in 1921 from Hong Kong [3]

Contemporary Notables of the name Riggins (post 1700) +

  • Mark Alan Riggins (b. 1957), American Major League Baseball pitching coach for the Chicago Cubs
  • Karriem Riggins (b. 1975), American jazz drummer
  • Robert John Riggins (b. 1949), nicknamed "The Diesel", former American NFL football running back
  • M. C. Riggins, American politician, Candidate for New York State Assembly from Broome County 2nd District, 1937 [4]
  • Jimmy W. Riggins, American Democrat politician, Alternate Delegate to Democratic National Convention from North Carolina, 2008 [4]
  • J. W. Riggins, American politician, Mayor of Waco, Texas, 1900-02, 1914-15 [4]
  • E. Frank Riggins, American Democrat politician, Postmaster at Hampton, Virginia, 1968-72 (acting, 1968) [4]
  • Carl Riggins, American Democrat politician, Alternate Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Wisconsin, 1928 [4]
  • Patrick Michael Riggins (b. 1959), retired former National Hockey League goaltender

USS Arizona
  • Mr. Gerald Herald Riggins, American Seaman First Class from California, USA working aboard the ship "USS Arizona" when she sunk during the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on 7th December 1941, he died in the sinking [5]


The Riggins 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: Dum vivo cano
Motto Translation: While alive celebrate.




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