Show ContentsSteven History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The name Steven was brought to England by the Normans when they conquered the country in 1066. It comes from the ancient personal name Stephen, meaning crown, wreath, or garland.

"This name was introduced into Britain by the Normans, with whom it was a favorite. Although found occasionally in England before 1066 its use then was due really to Christian tradition, Stephen (Stephanos) having been the first Christian martyr after Christ." [1]

"This scripture name, like many others, was not introduced here until the Norman Conquest, after which we find it in the form of Fitz-Stephen. It occupies a large place among our surnames in the usual genitive forms of Stephens. Stevens, Steevens, Stephenson, Stevenson." [2]

Early Origins of the Steven family

The surname Steven was first found in Gloucestershire where they were descended from FitzStephen, a Breton knight who was conjecturally descended from Count Stephen of Brittany and accompanied William the Conqueror into England and fought at the Battle of Hastings in 1066. Stephen FitzAirard was the captain of the "Mora," the ship which brought William the Conqueror over from Normandy. His son, Thomas FitzStephen (died 1120) was captain of the ill-fated White Ship (la Blanche-Nef), which sank off Barfleur, Normandy, on 25 November 1120.

There was of course, King Stephen (c. 1097-1154,) King of England (1135-1154); he was the son of Stephen, Count of Blois and Chartres. Robert FitzStephen (d.1183) was a Welsh soldier of Norman descent and one of the leaders of the Norman invasion of Ireland.

William Fitzstephen (fitz Stephen) (died c. 1191) was a cleric and administrator in the service of Thomas Becket.

The Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 listed Gilbert filius Stephani, Lincolnshire; Jordan filius Stephani, Essex; and Richard Stephen, Oxfordshire. Note the Stephani spelling was the Latin form of the name [3]

The name is "mostly confined south of a line drawn west from the Wash, being represented in the counties north of that line by Stephenson and Stevenson. Its great home is in Cornwall, and there are secondary centres in Sussex, and in South Wales and in the adjoining English county of Hereford. The name is said to have been introduced after the Conquest. In Cornwall it is of very ancient date, as is evidenced by the family of Stephens of Tregeuna, who, according to Lower, are the descendants of the Stephyns of St. Ives in the. reign of Edward IV., their name being written then in the singular." [4]

In Scotland, "Ada filius Stephani was burgess of Elgin in 1286 (REM., 221), Henricus Stephani had a charter of land in Ayr in 1409 (Friars Ayr, p. 43), William Stephani appears as rector of the church of Lestalric in 1418 (CMN., 28), John Stephani was burgess of Forfar in 1434 (RAA., II, 71) and witness in Brechin in 1435. Nichol fitz Steven, chaplain of Scotland, had license to take shipping at London or Dovorre at pleasure in 1372 " [1]

Early History of the Steven family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Steven research. Another 211 words (15 lines of text) covering the years 1086, 1805, 1589, 1660, 1628, 1653, 1603, 1679, 1645, 1660, 1683, 1656, 1659, 1647, 1718, 1629, 1669, 1667, 1669 and are included under the topic Early Steven History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Steven 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 Steven include Stephens, Stevens, Stephen, Steven, Stiven and many more.

Early Notables of the Steven family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Sir John Stephens of Finglas; Nathaniel Stephens (1589-1660), an English politician who sat in the House of Commons between 1628 and 1653, supporter of the Parliamentarian cause in the English Civil War; John Stephens (1603-1679), an English politician who sat in the House of Commons...
Another 53 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Steven Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Steven Ranking

In the United States, the name Steven is the 6,378th most popular surname with an estimated 4,974 people with that name. [5]

Ireland Migration of the Steven family to Ireland

Some of the Steven family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 68 words (5 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

United States Steven migration to the United States +

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 Stevens to arrive on North American shores:

Steven Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • William Steven, who arrived in Virginia in 1636 [6]
  • John Steven, who landed in Maryland in 1648 [6]
  • Richard Steven, who arrived in Virginia in 1651 [6]
  • Martha Steven, who settled in Virginia in 1670
Steven Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Anne Steven, who arrived in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1745 [6]
  • James Steven and Sarah Steven, who settled in North Carolina in 1775
  • Thomas Steven, aged 11, who landed in New York, NY in 1775 [6]
  • Thomas Steven, aged 11, who arrived in North Carolina in 1775 [6]
  • Sarah Steven, aged 16, who landed in New York, NY in 1775 [6]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Steven Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • William Steven, aged 32, who landed in New York in 1812 [6]
  • David Steven, who landed in New York, NY in 1834 [6]
  • Matthias Steven, who landed in Washington County, Pennsylvania in 1842 [6]
  • Bern Anton Leopold Steven, who arrived in America in 1849 [6]

Australia Steven migration to Australia +

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

Steven Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Joseph Steven, aged 39, who arrived in South Australia in 1852 aboard the ship "Phoebe Dunbar" [7]

Contemporary Notables of the name Steven (post 1700) +

  • Trevor McGregor Steven (b. 1963), English football talent scout from Berwick-upon-Tweed
  • David Steven (1878-1903), Scottish professional footballer
  • Brett Andrew Steven (b. 1969), New Zealand tennis player from Auckland
  • Mark Steven Carreon (b. 1963), American Major League Baseball first baseman and outfielder who played from 1987 to 1996
  • Allen Steven Kay (1945-2022), American advertising executive and businessman, best known for creating the television advertisement for Xerox that aired during the 1976 Super Bowl, featuring a monk called Dominic
  • James Steven Griles (b. 1947), American coal lobbyist and the Deputy Secretary for the U.S. Department of Interior
  • J. Steven Svoboda, American patent lawyer who has been an attorney since 1991. He is the founder of the California-based organization, Attorneys for the Rights of the Child
  • David Steven Pickerell (1956-2018), American master distiller from Fairborn, Ohio, considered the "Johnny Appleseed" or "founding father" of craft distilling, known for his whiskey
  • Kyle Steven Edmund (b. 1995), British professional tennis player who has a career-high singles ranking of world No. 14 and was the top-ranked male British tennis player from March 2018 through October 2019
  • James Steven Rausch (1928-1981), American prelate, second Roman Catholic bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Phoenix, Arizona

HMS Hood
  • Mr. Arthur Steven (b. 1901), Scottish Stoker Petty Officer serving for the Royal Navy from Glasgow, Scotland, who sailed into battle and died in the HMS Hood sinking [8]

  1. Black, George F., The Surnames of Scotland Their Origin, Meaning and History. New York: New York Public Library, 1946. Print. (ISBN 0-87104-172-3)
  2. Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  3. Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  4. Guppy, Henry Brougham, Homes of Family Names in Great Britain. 1890. Print.
  5. "What are the 5,000 Most Common Last Names in the U.S.?".,
  6. 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)
  7. South Australian Register Tuesday 3 February 1852. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) PHOEBE DUNBAR 1852. Retrieved
  8. 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 on Facebook