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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright © 2000 - 2015

Origins Available: French-Alt, French

Where did the French Rousseau family come from? What is the French Rousseau family crest and coat of arms? When did the Rousseau family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the Rousseau family history?

From the historical and enchanting region of France emerged a multitude of noble families, including the distinguished Rousseau family. Originally, the French people were known only by a single name. The process by which hereditary surnames were adopted in France is extremely interesting. Surnames evolved during the Middle Ages when people began to assume an extra name to avoid confusion and to further identify themselves. Often they adopted names that were derived from nicknames. Nickname surnames were derived from an eke-name, or added name. They usually reflected the physical characteristics or attributes of the first person that used the name. The name Rousseau is a nickname type of surname for a person with red hair or a ruddy complexion. Tracing the origin of the name further, we found the name Rousseau was originally derived from the Old French word "rous," meaning "red."


Spelling variations of this family name include: Rousseau, Rouseau, Rosseau, Rouseault, Roussault, Rouseult, Rosault, Rosseault, Rousult, DeRousseau, Derousseau, de Rousseau, De Rousault, de Rousault, Derousult, DeRouseau, de Rouseau, De Rouseau, LeRousseau, le Rousseau, Lerousseau, Aurousseau and many more.

First found in Burgundy (French: Bourgogne), an administrative and historical region of east-central France, where the family held a family seat since ancient times.


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Rousseau research. Another 529 words (38 lines of text) covering the years 1728, 1662, 1671, 1871, 1630, 1693, 1671, 1741, 1644 and 1699 are included under the topic Early Rousseau History in all our PDF Extended History products.


Another 61 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Rousseau Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.


Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Rousseau Settlers in United States in the 17th Century

  • Mr. Rousseau arrived in Carolina in 1679 with his wife and 6 children

Rousseau Settlers in United States in the 18th Century

  • Theodore Rousseau, who landed in Virginia in 1700
  • Charles Joseph Rousseau, who arrived in New York in 1797

Rousseau Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • John Peter Rousseau arrived in Philidelphia in 1803
  • E. Rousseau aged 40 arrived in New York City in 1823
  • J. Rousseau aged 37 arrived in New Orleans in 1823
  • Pierre Rousseau aged 34 arrived in New Orleans in 1823
  • August Rousseau, aged 4, landed in New Orleans, La in 1850

Rousseau Settlers in Canada in the 17th Century

  • Jacques Rousseau, who landed in Quebec in 1665


  • Lovell Harrison Rousseau (1818-1869), American Republican politician, Member of Indiana State House of Representatives, 1844-45
  • Hector J. Rousseau, American Democrat politician, Member of New Hampshire State House of Representatives from Manchester 13th Ward; Elected 1938
  • Guillaume Charles Rousseau, French Brigadier General during the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars from 1789 to 1815
  • Pierre Étienne Théodore Rousseau (1812-1867), French painter of the Barbizon school
  • Henri Julien Félix Rousseau (1844-1910), French Post-Impressionist painter
  • Jean-Jacques Rousseau (1712-1778), French philosopher, writer, and composer, his political philosophy influenced the French Revolution, best known for his Discourse on the Origin of Inequality and On the Social Contract
  • Mr. Pierre Rousseau (d. 1912), aged 49, English Chef from London, England who worked aboard the RMS Titanic and died in the sinking
  • André Rousseau, Canadian manager at Bell Canada (1971-1995) and was elected mayor of St. Lin, Québec in 1995
  • Jeannine Rousseau (b. 1941), Canadian lawyer in Montreal and Quebec Supreme Court judge
  • Joseph-Hervé Rousseau, Canadian member of the House of Commons for Rimouski, Quebec (1950-1953)



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  1. Crozier, William Armstrong Edition. Crozier's General Armory A Registry of American Families Entitled to Coat Armor. New York: Fox, Duffield, 1904. Print.
  2. Annuaire Général Héraldique Universel. Paris: Institut Héraldique, 1901. Print.
  3. de la Porte, A. Tresor Heraldique. Paris: F. Casterman, 1864. Print.
  4. Hanks, Patricia and Flavia Hodges. A Dictionary of Surnames. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988. Print. (ISBN 0-19-211592-8).
  5. Bolton, Charles Knowles. Bolton's American Armory. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1964. Print.
  6. Vaillancourt, Emile. La Conquete du Canada par les Normands. Biographie de la premiere generation Normande du Canada. Montreal: G. Ducharme, 1930. Print.
  7. Rupp, Daniel L. A Collection of Upwards of Thirty Thousand Names of German, Swiss, Dutch, French and Other Immigrants to Pennsylvania from 1727 to 1776. Baltimore. Print.
  8. Matthews, John. Matthews' American Armoury and Blue Book. London: John Matthews, 1911. Print.
  9. Rietstap, Johannes Baptist. Armorial Général. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co. Print.
  10. Filby, P. William and Mary K Meyer. Passenger and Immigration Lists Index in Four Volumes. Detroit: Gale Research, 1985. Print. (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8).
  11. ...

The Rousseau Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Rousseau Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

This page was last modified on 26 November 2015 at 13:54.

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