Shearer History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Early Origins of the Shearer family

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

Early History of the Shearer family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Shearer research. Another 90 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1376, 1503 and 1587 are included under the topic Early Shearer History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Shearer Spelling Variations

Spelling variations of this family name include: Shearer, Sherar, Sherer, Sheerer and others.

Early Notables of the Shearer family (pre 1700)

More information is included under the topic Early Shearer Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Shearer Ranking

In the United States, the name Shearer is the 1,981st most popular surname with an estimated 14,922 people with that name. [1] However, in New Zealand, the name Shearer is ranked the 609th most popular surname with an estimated 1,183 people with that name. [2]

Ireland Migration of the Shearer family to Ireland

Some of the Shearer family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 50 words (4 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Shearer migration to the United States +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Shearer Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • James Shearer, who arrived in New England in 1720 [3]
  • Donald Shearer, who settled in Georgia in 1735
  • Caspar Shearer, who landed in Pennsylvania in 1765 [3]
  • Lawrence Shearer, who landed in Pennsylvania in 1765 [3]
  • Ludwick Shearer, who arrived in Pennsylvania in 1765 [3]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Shearer Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Archibald Shearer, who arrived in Philadelphia in 1802
  • Mathew Shearer, who landed in New York, NY in 1816 [3]
  • Andrew Shearer, who landed in New York in 1820 [3]
  • Robert M Shearer, who landed in New York in 1830 [3]
  • Michael Shearer, who arrived in Somerset County, Pennsylvania in 1836 [3]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Canada Shearer migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Shearer Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century
  • Mr. Thomas Shearer U.E. who settled in Canada c. 1784 [4]
Shearer Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • Mr. Stephen Shearer who was emigrating through Grosse Isle Quarantine Station, Quebec aboard the ship "Free Briton" departing 25th May 1847 from Cork, Ireland; the ship arrived on 10th July 1847 but he died on board [5]

Australia Shearer migration to Australia +

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

Shearer Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • William Shearer, aged 23, a labourer, who arrived in South Australia in 1851 aboard the ship "Thetis" [6]
  • Elizabeth Shearer, aged 19, a servant, who arrived in South Australia in 1851 aboard the ship "Oregon" [7]
  • Thomas Shearer, aged 49, a ploughman, who arrived in South Australia in 1852 aboard the ship "Adelaide" [8]
  • James Liddle Shearer, aged 46, a labourer, who arrived in South Australia in 1852 aboard the ship "Caucasian" [9]
  • John Shearer, aged 49, a farmer, who arrived in South Australia in 1852 aboard the ship "Amazon" [10]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

New Zealand Shearer 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:

Shearer Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • John Shearer, who landed in Bay of Islands, New Zealand in 1836
  • Emmeline Shearer, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Artemesia" in 1854
  • Mr. George Shearer, (b. 1839), aged 24, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "Huntress" arriving in Lyttelton, Christchurch, South Island, New Zealand on 21st April 1863 [11]
  • John Shearer, aged 35, a labourer, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Resolute" in 1865
  • Jane Shearer, aged 33, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Resolute" in 1865
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Contemporary Notables of the name Shearer (post 1700) +

  • Edith Norma Shearer (1902-1983), Canadian-born, American five-time Academy Award nominated actress, one of the most popular actresses in the world from the mid-1920s until her retirement in 1942
  • Christopher High Shearer (1846-1926), prolific American painter in Berks County, Pennsylvania
  • William Kennedy Shearer (1931-2007), American Chairman of the Constitution Party from 1996 to 1999
  • Athole Dane Shearer Hawks (1900-1985), Canadian-born, American actress, sister of motion picture star Norma Shearer and MGM film sound engineer Douglas Shearer
  • Harry Julius Shearer (b. 1943), American Primetime Emmy Award winning actor, voice actor, comedian, writer, musician, radio host, director and producer
  • Al Shearer (b. 1972), American actor, best known for his portrayal of Nevil Shed in the 2006 Disney blockbuster Glory Road
  • Alan Shearer OBE, DL (b. 1970), English pundit and retired footballer who played as a striker from Newcastle upon Tyne
  • Bobby Shearer (1931-2006), Scottish professional football player and manager
  • Duncan Nichol Shearer (b. 1962), Scottish former footballer
  • David James Shearer MBE (b. 1957), New Zealand United Nations worker and politician, Special Representative of the Secretary-General for South Sudan (2017-)
  • ... (Another 10 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

HMS Hood
  • Mr. George B B Shearer (b. 1914), Irish Leading Cook (S) serving for the Royal Navy from Holywood, County Down, Ireland, who sailed into battle and died in the sinking [12]


  1. ^ https://namecensus.com/most_common_surnames.htm
  2. ^ https://forebears.io/new-zealand/surnames
  3. ^ 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)
  4. ^ 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
  5. ^ 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. 95)
  6. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) THETIS 1851. Retrieved http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1851Thetis.htm
  7. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) The barque OREGON, 521 tons - 1851 voyage to South Australia. Retrieved http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1851Oregon.htm
  8. ^ South Australian Register Tuesday 3 February 1852. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) ADELAIDE 1852. Retrieved http://www.theshipslist.com/ships/australia/adelaide1852.shtml
  9. ^ South Australian Register Tuesday 3 February 1852. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) BARQUE CAUCASIAN 1852. Retrieved http://www.theshipslist.com/ships/australia/caucasian1852.shtml
  10. ^ South Australian Register Tuesday 3 February 1852. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) AMAZON 1852. Retrieved http://www.theshipslist.com/ships/australia/amazon1852.shtml
  11. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 17th October 2018). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html
  12. ^ 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


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