Shears History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
Shears is a name that was brought to England by the ancestors of the Shears family when they emigrated following the Norman Conquest of 1066. The name Shears comes from the Norman given name Essira.
Early Origins of the Shears family
The surname Shears was first found in Surrey where they held a family seat from ancient times being Lords of the Manor of Shere recorded in the Domesday Book Survey taken in 1086 A.D. as being 'King's Land' and consisting of a church and mills. The original name of the village of Shere was 'Essira' and it may be taken that this was also the original spelling of the surname, taken from an unknown Norman noble who entered into England with William the Conqueror in 1066.
Early History of the Shears family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Shears research. Another 87 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1614, 1685, 1710, 1666, 1668, 1766, 1798, 1798 and 1716 are included under the topic Early Shears History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Shears Spelling Variations
Before the last few hundred years the English language had no fixed system of spelling rules. For that reason, spelling variations occurred commonly in Anglo Norman surnames. Over the years, many variations of the name Shears were recorded, including Shere, Sheres, Shear, Shears, Sheares, Sheare, Sheares, Sheer, Sheers, Sheere, Sheeres, Shire, Shires, Shiers, Shier, Shiere, Sheir, Sheirs, Sheire and many more.
Early Notables of the Shears family (pre 1700)
Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Sir Henry Sheeres (died 1710), English military engineer and author, was son of Henry Sheeres of Deptford, a captain in the Navy. "In 1666 he accompanied Edward Montagu, first Earl of Sandwich, the English ambassador, to Spain...
Another 45 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Shears Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Shears family to Ireland
Some of the Shears family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 76 words (5 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Shears migration to the United States +
The unstable environment in England at this time caused numerous families to board ships and leave in search of opportunity and freedom from persecution abroad in places like Ireland, Australia, and particularly the New World. The voyage was extremely difficult, however, and only taken at great expense. The cramped conditions and unsanitary nature of the vessels caused many to arrive diseased and starving, not to mention destitute from the enormous cost. Still opportunity in the emerging nations of Canada and the United States was far greater than at home and many went on to make important contributions to the cultures of their adopted countries. An examination of many early immigration records reveals that people bearing the name Shears arrived in North America very early:
Shears Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
- John Shears, who arrived in Pennsylvania in 1682
- John Shears, who arrived in Pennsylvania in 1682 
Shears Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
- Jo Shears, who settled in Georgia in 1734
Shears Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
- William Shears, who landed in Pennsylvania in 1824 
- Christopher, George, James, John, Joseph, Pheobe, and Sarah Shears, one family, all, who arrived in New York in 1830
Shears migration to Canada +
Some of the first settlers of this family name were:
Shears Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century
- Alexander Shears, who landed in Nova Scotia in 1750
Shears 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:
Shears Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
- Samuel Shears, aged 50, a labourer, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Waitangi" in 1874
- Hannah Shears, aged 48, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Waitangi" in 1874
- Henry Shears, aged 24, a labourer, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Waitangi" in 1874
- Mary Shears, aged 23, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Waitangi" in 1874
- James Shears, aged 5, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Waitangi" in 1874
- ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Contemporary Notables of the name Shears (post 1700) +
- George Penfield Shears (1890-1978), American Major League Baseball pitcher
- Curtis Shears (1901-1988), American Olympic bronze medalist fencer at the 1932 Summer Olympics
- Anthony J. Shears (b. 1983), American poet and rapper
- The Reverend Ernest Henry Shears (1849-1917), Anglican clergyman in South Africa, Archdeacon of Durban (1887 to 1892)
- Daniel Towers Shears (1784-1820), English coppersmith and inventor
Historic Events for the Shears family +
- Mr. Norman Stewart Shears, British Petty Officer Stoker, who sailed into battle on the HMS Repulse and died in the sinking 
Related Stories +
- ^ 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)
- ^ HMS Prince of Wales Crew members. (Retrieved 2014, April 9) . Retrieved from http://www.forcez-survivors.org.uk/biographies/listprincecrew.html
- ^ HMS Repulse Crew members. (Retrieved 2014, April 9) . Retrieved from http://www.forcez-survivors.org.uk/biographies/listrepulsecrew.html