Roberts History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The Roberts surname is derived from the personal name Robert. This name was originally came from the Old German words "hrod" and "behrt," which mean "fame" and "bright." It was introduced to Britain by the Normans during the time of Edward the Confessor, and became very popular. A large number of diminutives and pet-forms were derived from this name in early times.

Early Origins of the Roberts family

The surname Roberts was first found in Denbighshire (Welsh: Sir Ddinbych), a historic county in Northeast Wales created by the Laws in Wales Act 1536, where they were descended from Einion Efell, Lord of Cynllateh, through Howell ap Iolyn of Llangedwyn, and were directly descended from Rhodri Mawr, King of Wales.

Early History of the Roberts family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Roberts research. Another 106 words (8 lines of text) covering the years 1585, 1665, 1679, 1648, 1657, 1606, 1685, 1649, 1718, 1682, 1722, 1719, 1722, 1606, 1685, 1679, 1684, 1660, 1723 and are included under the topic Early Roberts History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Roberts Spelling Variations

Although there are comparatively few Welsh surnames, they have a great many spelling variations. Variations of Welsh names began almost immediately after their acceptance within Welsh society. In the Middle Ages, it was up to priests and the few other people that recorded names in official documents to decide how to spell the names that they heard. Variations that occurred because of improper recording increased dramatically as the names were later transliterated into English. The Brythonic Celtic language of Wales, known by natives as Cymraeg, featured many highly inflected sounds that could not be properly captured by the English language. Spelling variations were, however, also carried out according to an individual's design: a branch loyalty within the family, a religious adherence, or even patriotic affiliations were all indicated by the particular variation of one's name. The spelling variations of the name Roberts have included Roberts, Robert, Robartes, Robarts and others.

Early Notables of the Roberts family (pre 1700)

Prominent amongst the family during the late Middle Ages was William Roberts (1585-1665), Welsh Bishop of Bangor; Richard Roberts, Sheriff of Cornwall; Michael Roberts (died 1679), Welsh-born, Principal of Jesus College, Oxford from 1648 to 1657; John Robartes, 1st Earl of Radnor and Viscount Bodmin PC (1606-1685), an English politician; and his son, Francis Robartes FRS (c. 1649-1718), an English politician; and John "Bartholomew" Roberts (1682-1722), Welsh pirate who raided ships off America and West Africa between 1719 and 1722. He changed his first name to Bartholomew after the buccaneer Bartholomew Sharp. He was the most successful pirate of the Golden...
Another 115 words (8 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Roberts Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Roberts family to Ireland

Some of the Roberts family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 73 words (5 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Roberts migration to the United States +

Many people from Wales joined the general migration to North America in the 19th and 20th centuries, searching for land, work, and freedom. Like the many other immigrants from the British Isles, they made a significant contribution to the development of Canada and the United States. The Welsh and their descendents added a rich cultural tradition to the newly developed towns, cities, and villages. An investigation of the immigration and passenger lists has revealed a number of people bearing the name Roberts:

Roberts Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Elias Roberts, who landed in Virginia in 1624 [1]
  • Blanch Roberts, aged 20, who arrived in Bermuda in 1635 [1]
  • John Roberts, who settled in Virginia in 1638
  • Edward Roberts, who settled in Virginia in 1639
  • Ewen Roberts, who arrived in Virginia in 1643 [1]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Roberts Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Ellis Roberts, who arrived in Pennsylvania in 1703 [1]
  • Alexander Roberts, who arrived in Jamaica in 1780 [1]
  • Bennet Roberts, who landed in Mississippi in 1799 [1]
Roberts Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Edmond Roberts, who landed in New York in 1802 [1]
  • Brice Roberts, who arrived in New York in 1822 [1]
  • David Roberts, who landed in New York in 1831 [1]
  • Amelia Roberts, aged 20, who landed in Key West, Fla in 1838 [1]
  • Francis Roberts, who arrived in Charleston, South Carolina in 1841 [1]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Roberts Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • Evelyn Ashley Roberts, who arrived in Alabama in 1919 [1]

Canada Roberts migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Roberts Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century
  • Mr. Thomas Roberts U.E. who arrived at Port Roseway, [Shelbourne], Nova Scotia on October 26, 1783 was passenger number 222 aboard the ship "HMS Clinton", picked up on September 28, 1783 at Staten Island, New York, USA [2]
  • Mr. Zachariah Roberts U.E. who settled in Canada c. 1784 [2]
  • Mr. Zachariah Roberts U.E. (b. 1756) born in New York, USA who settled in Queens County, New Brunswick c. 1784 he served with Sir William Howe, he died in 1833 [2]
  • Mr. Stephen Roberts U.E. who settled in St. Andrews, Charlotte County, New Brunswick c. 1784 member of the Penobscot Association [2]
Roberts Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • C.S Roberts, aged 32, a gentleman, who arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick in 1833 aboard the ship "Legatus" from London, England
  • Louisa Roberts, aged 22, who arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick in 1833 aboard the ship "Legatus" from London, England
  • Charles William Roberts, aged 3, who arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick in 1833 aboard the ship "Legatus" from London, England
  • John Roberts, aged 20, a labourer, who arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick in 1833 aboard the ship "Augusta" from Liverpool, England
  • Miss. Margaret Roberts, aged 6 months who immigrated to Canada, arriving at the Grosse Isle Quarantine Station in Quebec but died on Grosse Isle on 19th June 1847 [3]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Australia Roberts migration to Australia +

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

Roberts Settlers in Australia in the 18th Century
  • Mr. William John Roberts (b. 1756), aged 31, Cornish settler convicted in Bodmin, Cornwall, UK on 14th August 1786, sentenced for 7 years for stealing yarn valued at 9 shillings, transported aboard the ship "Scarborough" on 13th May 1787 to New South Wales, Australia [4]
Roberts Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • John Roberts, Welsh convict from Brecon, Wales, who was transported aboard the "Asia" on September 3rd, 1820, settling in New South Wales, Australia [5]
  • William Roberts, English convict from Bedford, who was transported aboard the "Asia" on July 29th, 1823, settling in Van Diemen's Land, Australia [6]
  • William Roberts, English convict from Shrompshire, who was transported aboard the "Asia" on July 29th, 1823, settling in Van Diemen's Land, Australia [6]
  • Robert Roberts, English convict from London, who was transported aboard the "Albion" on May 17, 1823, settling in Van Diemen's Land, Australia [7]
  • John Roberts, English convict from Sussex, who was transported aboard the "Asia" on October 22nd, 1824, settling in New South Wales, Australia [8]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

New Zealand Roberts 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:

Roberts Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Philip Roberts, aged 36, a miner, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Duke of Roxburgh" in 1840
  • Jonathan Roberts, aged 15, a labourer, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Duke of Roxburgh" in 1840
  • Mary Anne Roberts, aged 12, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Duke of Roxburgh" in 1840
  • Philip Roberts, aged 10, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Duke of Roxburgh" in 1840
  • Jane Roberts, aged 6, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Duke of Roxburgh" in 1840
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Contemporary Notables of the name Roberts (post 1700) +

  • Alfred "Uganda" Roberts (1943-2020), American conga/percussion player
  • Mary Martha Corinne Morrison Claiborne "Cokie" Roberts (1943-2019), née Boggs, an American three-time Emmy Award winning journalist and bestselling author, known for her work on Morning Edition, The MacNeil/Lehrer NewsHour, World News Tonight, and This Week
  • Terrell Maiza Roberts (1981-2019), American football defensive back who played two seasons with the Cincinnati Bengals (2003-2005)
  • Clint Ronald Roberts (1935-2017), American politician, Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from South Dakota (1981-1983)
  • John Dombrowski Roberts (1918-2016), American chemist, recipient of the ACS Award in Pure Chemistry (1954); Roger Adams Award in Organic Chemistry (1967); Tolman Award (1974); Willard Gibbs Award (1983); Priestley Medal (1987); Welch Award (1990) and many more
  • Mike Roberts (1933-2016), American radio sportscaster
  • Donald "Don" Roberts (1933-2016), American college men's ice hockey coach, awarded the Hobey Baker Legends of College Hockey Award in 2009
  • Larry Roberts (1963-2016), American NFL football defensive end for the San Francisco 49ers (1986–1993)
  • Doris Roberts (1929-2016), born Doris May Green, an American five-time Emmy Award winning and Screen Actors Guild Award winning actress, perhaps best remembered for her role as Marie Barone, on the sitcom Everybody Loves Raymond (1996-2005)
  • Ralph Joel Roberts (1920-2015), American businessman, co-founder of Comcast Corporation
  • ... (Another 41 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Air New Zealand Flight 901
  • Mr. Michael Seaver Roberts (1932-1979), New Zealander passenger, from Wellington, North Island, 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 [9]
  • Mrs. Allison Meryl Roberts (1933-1979), New Zealander passenger, from Wellington, North Island, New Zealand aboard the Air New Zealand Flight 901 for an Antarctic sightseeing flight when it flew into Mount Erebus; she died in the crash [9]
Arrow Air Flight 1285
  • Mr. Bobby E Roberts (b. 1964), American Specialist 4th Class from Fort Worth, Texas, USA who died in the crash [10]
  • Mr. Wilbur Grant Roberts (b. 1957), American Staff Sergeant from Clarksville, Tennessee, USA who died in the crash [10]
Empress of Ireland
  • Mr. William Roberts, British Assistant Steward from United Kingdom who worked aboard the Empress of Ireland and died in the sinking [11]
  • Mr. James Roberts, British Engineer's Steward from United Kingdom who worked aboard the Empress of Ireland and survived the sinking [11]
HMAS Sydney II
  • Mr. Lyndon Irvine Roberts (1921-1941), Australian Stoker from North Cottesloe, Western Australia, Australia, who sailed into battle aboard HMAS Sydney II and died in the sinking [12]
  • Mr. Ronald Charles Roberts (1920-1941), Australian Assistant Cook from Middle Park, Victoria, Australia, who sailed into battle aboard HMAS Sydney II and died in the sinking [12]
HMS Cornwall
  • John Roberts (d. 1942), British Leading Stoker aboard the HMS Cornwall when she was struck by air bombers and sunk; he died in the sinking [13]
HMS Dorsetshire
  • Bill Roberts, British aboard the HMS Dorsetshire when she was struck by air bombers and sunk; he survived the sinking [14]
HMS Hood
  • Mr. Reginald C Roberts (b. 1919), English Ordinary Seaman serving for the Royal Navy from Minster, Kent, England, who sailed into battle and died in the sinking [15]
  • Mr. Lewis G Roberts (b. 1919), Welsh Able Seaman serving for the Royal Navy from Abertillery, Monmouthshire, Wales, who sailed into battle and died in the sinking [15]
  • Mr. Gordon R Roberts (b. 1913), English Able Seaman serving for the Royal Navy from Yateley, Hampshire, England, who sailed into battle and died in the sinking [15]
  • Mr. Frederick C Roberts (b. 1903), English Leading Seaman serving for the Royal Navy from Fulham, London, England, who sailed into battle and died in the sinking [15]
  • Mr. Ernest G Roberts (b. 1912), English Mechanician 2nd Class serving for the Royal Navy from Coxford, Southampton, England, who sailed into battle and died in the sinking [15]
HMS Prince of Wales
  • Mr. Leonard Roberts, British Stoker 2nd Class, who sailed into battle on the HMS Prince of Wales and died in the sinking [16]
  • Mr. Lawton Roberts, British Stoker 1st Class, who sailed into battle on the HMS Prince of Wales and died in the sinking [16]
  • Mr. L Roberts, British Stoker, who sailed into battle on the HMS Prince of Wales and survived the sinking [16]
  • Mr. E Roberts, British Petty Officer Telegraphist, who sailed into battle on the HMS Prince of Wales and survived the sinking [16]
  • Mr. A Roberts, British Ordinary Seaman, who sailed into battle on the HMS Prince of Wales and survived the sinking [16]
  • ... (Another 3 entries are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
HMS Repulse
  • Mr. Frederick Timothy Roberts, British Boy Signalman, who sailed into battle on the HMS Repulse and survived the sinking [17]
  • Mr. Herbert H Roberts, British Leading Seaman, who sailed into battle on the HMS Repulse and survived the sinking [17]
  • Mr. William H Roberts, British Able Bodied Seaman, who sailed into battle on the HMS Repulse and survived the sinking [17]
  • Mr. George Henry Thomas Roberts, British Engine Room Artificer 4th Class, who sailed into battle on the HMS Repulse and died in the sinking [17]
  • Mr. E N R Roberts, British Stoker, who sailed into battle on the HMS Repulse and survived the sinking [17]
HMS Royal Oak
  • H. Roberts, British Able Seaman with the Royal Navy aboard the HMS Royal Oak when she was torpedoed by U-47 and sunk; he survived the sinking [18]
  • George O. Roberts, British Lieutenant with the Royal Navy aboard the HMS Royal Oak when she was torpedoed by U-47 and sunk; he survived the sinking [18]
  • Thomas Owen Roberts (1919-1939), British Able Seaman with the Royal Navy aboard the HMS Royal Oak when she was torpedoed by U-47 and sunk; he died in the sinking [18]
  • Frederick William Roberts (1918-1939), British Able Seaman with the Royal Navy aboard the HMS Royal Oak when she was torpedoed by U-47 and sunk; he died in the sinking [18]
  • Arthur Roberts (1901-1939), British Chief Stoker with the Royal Navy aboard the HMS Royal Oak when she was torpedoed by U-47 and sunk; he died in the sinking [18]
RMS Lusitania
  • Mr. Charles A. Roberts, English Able-Bodied Seaman from England, who worked aboard the RMS Lusitania and survived the sinking [19]
  • Mr. John Roberts, English Assistant Engineers' Mess Steward from Liverpool, England, who worked aboard the RMS Lusitania and died in the sinking [19]
  • Miss Annie Jane Roberts, English Stewardess from Bootle, Lancashire, England, who worked aboard the RMS Lusitania and died in the sinking and was recovered [19]
RMS Titanic
  • Mr. Frank John Roberts (d. 1912), aged 36, English Third Butcher from Farnborough, Hampshire who worked aboard the RMS Titanic and died in the sinking and was recovered by CS Mackay-Bennett [20]
  • Mr. Hugh H. Roberts (d. 1912), aged 40, English Bedroom Steward from Bootle, Lancashire who worked aboard the RMS Titanic and died in the sinking and was recovered by CS Mackay-Bennett [20]
  • Mrs. Mary Kezziah Roberts, (née Humphrys), aged 41, English Saloon Steward from Southampton, Hampshire who worked aboard the RMS Titanic and survived the sinking by escaping in life boat 16 [20]
  • Mr. Robert George Roberts (d. 1912), aged 35, English Fireman/Stoker from Southampton, Hampshire who worked aboard the RMS Titanic and died in the sinking [20]
USS Arizona
  • Mr. Walter Scott Roberts Jr., American Radioman First Class from Missouri, 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 [21]
  • Mr. Wilburn Carle Roberts, American Baker Third Class from Louisiana, 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 [21]
  • Mr. William Francis Roberts, American Seaman Second Class 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 [21]
  • Mr. Dwight Fisk Roberts, American Fireman First Class from Kansas, 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 [21]
  • Mr. Kenneth Franklin Roberts, American Boatswain's Mate Second Class 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 [21]
  • ... (Another 1 entries are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)


The Roberts 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: Ewch ymlaen
Motto Translation: Go forward.


Suggested Readings for the name Roberts +

  • 20 Roberts-Allen Families by Merritt E. Roberts

  1. ^ 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)
  2. ^ 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
  3. ^ 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. 53)
  4. ^ Cornwall Online Parish Clerks. (Retrieved 30th May 2018). Retrieved from http://www.opc-cornwall.org/Resc/pdfs/emigration_australia_convicts.pdf
  5. ^ State Library of Queensland. (Retrieved 2016, October 27) Asia 1 voyage to Van Diemen's Land, Australia in 1820 with 192 passengers. Retrieved from http://www.convictrecords.com.au/ships/asia/1820
  6. ^ State Library of Queensland. (Retrieved 2016, October 27) Asia 1 voyage to Van Diemen's Land, Australia in 1823 with 151 passengers. Retrieved from http://www.convictrecords.com.au/ships/asia/1823
  7. ^ 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
  8. ^ 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
  9. ^ Mount Erebus, Memorial, Roll of Remembrance (Retrieved 2018, February 21st). Retrieved from http://www.erebus.co.nz/memorialandawards/rollofremembrance.aspx
  10. ^ American War Memorials - Flight 1285. (Retrieved 2016, August 24) . Retrieved from http://www.uswarmemorials.org/html/monument_details.php?SiteID=317&MemID=550
  11. ^ Commemoration Empress of Ireland 2014. (Retrieved 2014, June 17) . Retrieved from http://www.empress2014.ca/seclangen/listepsc1.html
  12. ^ HMAS Sydney II, Finding Sydney Foundation - Roll of Honour. (Retrieved 2014, April 24) . Retrieved from http://www.findingsydney.com/roll.asp
  13. ^ Force Z Survivors Crew List HMS Cornwall (Retrieved 2018, February 13th) - Retrieved from https://www.forcez-survivors.org.uk/biographies/listcornwallcrew.html#A
  14. ^ Force Z Survivors HMS Dorsetshire Crew List, (Retrieved 2018, February 13th), https://www.forcez-survivors.org.uk/biographies/listdorsetshirecrew.html
  15. ^ H.M.S. Hood Association-Battle Cruiser Hood: Crew Information - H.M.S. Hood Rolls of Honour, Men Lost in the Sinking of H.M.S. Hood, 24th May 1941. (Retrieved 2016, July 15) . Retrieved from http://www.hmshood.com/crew/memorial/roh_24may41.htm
  16. ^ HMS Prince of Wales Crew members. (Retrieved 2014, April 9) . Retrieved from http://www.forcez-survivors.org.uk/biographies/listprincecrew.html
  17. ^ HMS Repulse Crew members. (Retrieved 2014, April 9) . Retrieved from http://www.forcez-survivors.org.uk/biographies/listrepulsecrew.html
  18. ^ 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
  19. ^ Lusitania Passenger List - The Lusitania Resource. (Retrieved 2014, March 7) . Retrieved from http://www.rmslusitania.info/lusitania-passenger-list/
  20. ^ Titanic Passenger List - Titanic Facts. (Retrieved 2016, July 13) . Retrieved from http://www.titanicfacts.net/titanic-passenger-list.html
  21. ^ Pearl Harbour: USS Arizona Casualties List Pearl Harbour December 7, 1941. (Retrieved 2018, July 31st). Retrieved from http://pearl-harbor.com/arizona/casualtylist.html


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