Traverse History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
The family name Traverse is one of the oldest Anglo-Saxon names of Britain. It was originally a name for a person who worked as a person who collected a toll from travelers or merchants crossing a bridge. This common practice had the purpose of providing financial resources to maintain the upkeep of the bridge. The surname Traverse is derived from the Old English words travers, travas, traves, and travis. These are all derived from the Old French nouns travers and traverse, which refer to the act of passing through a gate or crossing a river or bridge. 
Alternatively the name could have originated in Normandy at Trevieres, between Bayeux and Caen. "The name continued in Normandy, where Ranulph de Chnchamp, after 1138, assumed the name of Travers." 
"In the time of the Conqueror, Robert de Travers or d'Estrivers, Baron of Burgh-upon-Sands, married the daughter of Ranulph de Meschines, Lord of Cumberland, and the sister of Ranulph Bricasard, who succeeded his cousin Richard d'Abrincis as Earl of Chester in 1119. He received from his father-in-law the office of Hereditary Forester of Inglewood in fee, which passed through his only child, Ibria, to Ralph de Engayne. This forestership of Inglewood was so honourable, and gave so great command, that there is no wonder the family should wish by every means to set forth their claim to it" 
Early Origins of the Traverse family
The surname Traverse was first found in Lancashire where they held a family seat from very ancient times, at Mount Travers, some say before the Norman Conquest in 1066.
The Manor of Skelmerdale in Lancashire proved to reveal some interesting details about the family. According to the Domesday Book, it was originally held by Uctred, who also held Dalton and Uplitherland. Later it was part of the forest fee, held by the Gernet family. "The first of them known to have held it, Vivian Gernet, gave Skelmersdale and other manors to Robert Travers; these were held in 1212 by Henry Travers under Roger Gernet."  The manor passed on to the Lovels, but they lost it later after the forfeiture in 1487.
Other early records include Walter de Travers who was listed in Hodgson's History of Northumberland in 1219 and two listings in the Hundredorum Rolls of 1273: Hugh Travers in Lincolnshire; and Nigel Travers in Buckinghamshire. Later the Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls of 1379 listed Robertus Trauers. 
The township of Nateby was an early home to this distinguished family. "This township is said to have been in the tenure of the family of Travers, of Tulketh, so far back as the reign of Henry I.; Laurence Travers, who lived soon after that reign, was succeeded by eleven generations, and Nateby appears in possession of William Travers in the reign of Elizabeth." 
Early History of the Traverse family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Traverse research. Another 127 words (9 lines of text) covering the years 1590, 1578, 1614, 1609, 1614, 1548, 1635, 1594, 1598, 1525, 1522, 1532, 1770, 1834 and 1647 are included under the topic Early Traverse History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Traverse Spelling Variations
Before English spelling was standardized a few hundred years ago, spelling variations of names were a common occurrence. Elements of Latin, French and other languages became incorporated into English through the Middle Ages, and name spellings changed even among the literate. The variations of the surname Traverse include Travers, Traverse, Travis, Traviss and others.
Early Notables of the Traverse family (pre 1700)
Notables of this surname at this time include: Sir Henry Travers of Monkstown Castle whose daughter married the Viscount Baltinglass; and Walter Travers (1548?-1635), an English Puritan theologian, chaplain to William Cecil, 1st Baron Burghley, Provost of Trinity College, Dublin from 1594...
Another 41 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Traverse Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
In Newfoundland, Canada, the name Traverse is the 458th most popular surname with an estimated 103 people with that name. 
Migration of the Traverse family to Ireland
Some of the Traverse family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 137 words (10 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Traverse migration to the United States +
A great wave of immigration to the New World was the result of the enormous political and religious disarray that struck England at that time. Families left for the New World in extremely large numbers. The long journey was the end of many immigrants and many more arrived sick and starving. Still, those who made it were rewarded with an opportunity far greater than they had known at home in England. These emigrant families went on to make significant contributions to these emerging colonies in which they settled. Some of the first North American settlers carried this name or one of its variants:
Traverse Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
- Jone Traverse, who landed in Virginia in 1665 
- William Traverse, who landed in Maryland in 1669 
- James Traverse, who arrived in Maryland in 1679 
Traverse Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
- Joseph Traverse, who arrived in New York in 1798 
Contemporary Notables of the name Traverse (post 1700) +
- Madlaine Traverse (1875-1964), born Madlaine Businsky, an American stage and screen actress
- Patrick Traverse (b. 1974), Canadian professional NHL ice hockey defenceman
Related Stories +
The Traverse 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: Nec temere nec timide
Motto Translation: Neither rashly nor timidly.
- ^ Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
- ^ 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)
- ^ Cleveland, Dutchess of The Battle Abbey Roll with some Account of the Norman Lineages. London: John Murray, Abermarle Street, 1889. Print. Volume 3 of 3
- ^ 'Townships: Scarisbrick', in A History of the County of Lancaster: Volume 3, ed. William Farrer and J Brownbill (London, 1907), pp. 265-276. British History Online http://www.british-history.ac.uk/vch/lancs/vol3/pp265-276 [accessed 21 January 2017].
- ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
- ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
- ^ The order of Common Surnames in 1955 in Newfoundland retrieved on 20th October 2021 (retrieved from Family Names of the Island of Newfoundland by E.R. Seary corrected edition ISBN 0-7735-1782-0)
- ^ 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)