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

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

The Norman Conquest of England in 1066 brought many new words to England from which surnames were formed. Rugg was one of these new Norman names. It was specifically tailored to its first bearer, who was a person associated with the color red, whether through hair color, clothing, or complexion. Accordingly, the name is derived from the Old French word ruge, meaning red.


A multitude of spelling variations characterize Norman surnames. Many variations occurred because Old and Middle English lacked any definite spelling rules. The introduction of Norman French to England also had a pronounced effect, as did the court languages of Latin and French. Therefore, one person was often referred to by several different spellings in a single lifetime. The various spellings include Rugg, Rug, Rugge and others.

First found in Norfolk where they held a family seat as Lords of the Manor of Felmingham. This ancient manor dates back to the Domesday Book, [1] a survey of England taken in 1086 by Duke William of Normandy after his conquest of England at Hastings in 1066 A.D. In the survey, the village, which also included a Mill and Church, was held from the King by Ashford, Roger Bigod, and the Abbot of Holme. Conjecturally the family name Rugg is descended from one of these Norman nobles, although which one is uncertain.


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Rugg research. Another 179 words(13 lines of text) covering the years 1610, 1657, 1550, 1536 and 1549 are included under the topic Early Rugg History in all our PDF Extended History products.


Another 31 words(2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Rugg Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.


Many English families left England, to avoid the chaos of their homeland and migrated to the many British colonies abroad. Although the conditions on the ships were extremely cramped, and some travelers arrived diseased, starving, and destitute, once in the colonies, many of the families prospered and made valuable contributions to the cultures of what would become the United States and Canada. Research into the origins of individual families in North America has revealed records of the immigration of a number of people bearing the name Rugg or a variant listed above:

Rugg Settlers in United States in the 17th Century

  • Benjamin Rugg who settled in Virginia in 1643
  • Benj Rugg, who arrived in Virginia in 1643
  • Ann Rugg, who landed in Virginia in 1650
  • John Rugg, who landed in Lancaster, Massachusetts in 1654
  • Honnor Rugg settled in Virginia in 1670

Rugg Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • M. Rugg settled in San Francisco, California in 1852


  • Paul Rugg (b. 1960), American two-time Daytime Emmy Award winning and Primetime Emmy Award nominated screen writer and actor
  • Sylvanus T. Rugg (1834-1881), American Union Army officer
  • Charles Nosike "Charlie" Rugg (b. 1990), American soccer player
  • Jim Rugg (b. 1977), American cartoonist and illustrator
  • Miss Emily Rugg, aged 21, English Second Class passenger from Guernsey, Channel Islands who sailed aboard the RMS Titanic and survived the sinking escaping on life boat 12
  • Sir Edward Percy Rugg, Councillor for the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea
  • Gordon Rugg (b. 1955), Scottish academic
  • Susie Rugg (b. 1982), Australian actress



  1. ^ Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)

Other References

  1. Bradford, William. History of Plymouth Plantation 1620-1647 Edited by Samuel Eliot Morrison 2 Volumes. New York: Russell and Russell, 1968. Print.
  2. Innes, Thomas and Learney. The Tartans of the Clans and Families of Scotland 1st Edition. Edinburgh: W & A. K. Johnston Limited, 1938. Print.
  3. 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).
  4. Shirley, Evelyn Philip. Noble and Gentle Men of England Or Notes Touching The Arms and Descendants of the Ancient Knightley and Gentle Houses of England Arranged in their Respective Counties 3rd Edition. Westminster: John Bowyer Nichols and Sons, 1866. Print.
  5. Cook, Chris. English Historical Facts 1603-1688. London: MacMillan, 1980. Print.
  6. 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).
  7. Browning, Charles H. Americans of Royal Descent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  8. Burke, John Bernard Ed. The Roll of Battle Abbey. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  9. Ingram, Rev. James. Translator Anglo-Saxon Chronicle 1823. Print.
  10. Bede, The Venerable. Historia Ecclesiatica Gentis Anglorum (The Ecclesiastical History Of the English People). Available through Internet Medieval Sourcebook the Fordham University Centre for Medieval Studies. Print.
  11. ...

The Rugg Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Rugg 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 22 December 2014 at 13:15.

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