Squair History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Squair is a name that was brought to England by the ancestors of the Squair family when they migrated with the great wave that followed the Norman Conquest of 1066. Squair is a name for a squire. Looking back even further, we found the name was originally derived from the Old French word escuyer, which indicated someone of the social rank immediately below a knight. [1] [2]

As by way on confirmation, Chaucer in his Canterbury Tales noted " With hym ther was his sone, a yong Squier."

Early Origins of the Squair family

The surname Squair was first found in Worcestershire where they held a family seat from very early times as Lords of the manor of Hanbury, and also estates in Devon.

In Cornwall, "the church of St. Keverne is ornamented with a lofty steeple, which, standing on rising ground, is a conspicuous object at a great distance. Within the church there are memorials of the several families of Bogan, Sandys, and Squier." [3]

"Squire is a numerous name in Barnstaple [Devon] and its neighbourhood. The mayors of that town in 1353 and 1471 bore this name." [4]

The Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 included listings of John le Squier, Cambridgeshire; and William Squier, Huntingdonshire. Later the Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls of Yorkshire listed Thomas Squier; and Agnes Squier as holding lands there at that time. [5]

In the New World, the family rose to prominence particularly in Newfoundland, where Sir Richard Squires was Newfoundland's 6th Prime Minister. Today, many of the family reside there with both spellings, Squire and Squires.

Early History of the Squair family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Squair research. Another 94 words (7 lines of text) covering the years 1296, 1387, 1700, 1598, 1595 and 1677 are included under the topic Early Squair History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Squair Spelling Variations

Before English spelling was standardized a few hundred years ago, spelling variations of names were a common occurrence. Elements of Latin, Norman French and other languages became incorporated into English throughout the Middle Ages, and name spellings changed even among the literate. The variations of the surname Squair include Squire, Squair, Skair, Skuyer, Squires and others.

Early Notables of the Squair family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Edward Squire (died 1598), alleged conspirator, "originally followed the calling of a scrivener at Greenwich, where he married and had children. He then obtained a post in Queen Elizabeth's stables, but, being 'a man of wit above his vocation,' gave up his position to become a sailor. In August 1595 he started with Drake on his last voyage to the West Indies, being on board the Francis, a small barque. Late in October the Francis separated from the rest of the fleet off Guadeloupe...
Another 91 words (6 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Squair Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Squair family to Ireland

Some of the Squair family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. More information about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the Squair family

In England at this time, the uncertainty of the political and religious environment of the time caused many families to board ships for distant British colonies in the hopes of finding land and opportunity, and escaping persecution. The voyages were expensive, crowded, and difficult, though, and many arrived in North America sick, starved, and destitute. Those who did make it, however, were greeted with greater opportunities and freedoms that they could have experienced at home. Many of those families went on to make important contributions to the young nations in which they settled. Early immigration records have shown some of the first Squairs to arrive on North American shores: Robert Squire who settled in Virginia in 1637; Phillip Squier settled in Barbados in 1634; George Squire settled in New England in 1630; along with Thomas.



The Squair 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: Tiens ferme
Motto Translation: Hold firm.


  1. ^ Smith, Eldson Coles, New Dictionary of American Family Names New York: Harper & Row, 1956. Print
  2. ^ Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  3. ^ Hutchins, Fortescue, The History of Cornwall, from the Earliest Records and Traditions to the Present Time. London: William Penaluna, 1824. Print
  4. ^ Guppy, Henry Brougham, Homes of Family Names in Great Britain. 1890. Print.
  5. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)


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