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An excerpt from archives copyright 2000 - 2016

Today's generation of the Virtue family bears a name that was brought to England by the migration wave that was started by the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Virtue family lived in Cumberland. Their name, however, is a reference to the Barony of La Ferte, Normandy, the family's place of residence prior to the Norman Conquest of England in 1066.


The surname Virtue was first found in Cumberland where they held a family seat anciently after the Norman Conquest in 1066.

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 Virtue include Vardy, Vardey, Vartey, Varty, Verty, Vertie and others.


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Virtue research. Another 175 words (12 lines of text) covering the years 1066, 1473, 1435 and 1645 are included under the topic Early Virtue History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


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


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 Virtues to arrive on North American shores:

Virtue Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • Ann Virtue, aged 25, arrived in New York, NY in 1803
  • Robert Virtue, aged 22, landed in New York, NY in 1803
  • David Virtue, who landed in New London, Conn in 1811
  • Allen Virtue, aged 25, landed in Maryland in 1813
  • James Virtue, who arrived in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1860

Virtue Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century

  • G B Virtue landed in Wellington, New Zealand in 1841
  • William Virtue, aged 23, a farm labourer, arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Ocean Mail" in 1875

  • Thomas E. "Tom" Virtue (b. 1957), American actor, known for his work in Iron Man 3 (2013), Even Stevens (1999) and Transformers: Dark of the Moon (2011)
  • Jacob Kitchline "Guesses" Virtue (1865-1943), American Major League Baseball first baseman who played from 1890 to 1984 for the Cleveland Spiders
  • Leonard Virtue, American Democrat politician, Member of Minnesota State House of Representatives 8th District; Elected 1906
  • Henrietta T. Virtue, American Republican politician, Alternate Delegate to Republican National Convention from Massachusetts, 1948
  • John Virtue (b. 1947), English monochrome landscape artist, honorary Professor of Fine Art at the University of Plymouth
  • George Virtue (1794-1868), English publisher in London, well known for printing engravings
  • Keith Virtue MBE (1909-1980), Australian pioneer aviator, co-founder of Virtue's Air Travel and co-founder of New England Airways (1931-1936)
  • Danny Virtue, Canadian Leo Award winning and two-time Gemini Award nominated stuntman, known for his work on Shooter (2007), Final Destination (2000) and Underworld: Evolution (2006)
  • Tessa Jane McCormick Virtue (b. 1989), Canadian ice dancer who with Scott Moir are the 2010 Olympic champions, the 2014 Olympic silver medalists, the 2010 and 2012 World champions, the 2008 and 2012 Four Continents champions and six-time Canadian national champions
  • Tarita Virtue (b. 1970), Trinidad and Tobago-born actress and model, known for her work in Living the Dream (2006), Bar Starz (2008) and Heart of the Beholder (2005)
  • ...

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    Other References

    1. Shaw, William A. Knights of England A Complete Record from the Earliest Time to the Present Day of the Knights of all the Orders of Chivalry in England, Scotland, Ireland and Knights Bachelors 2 Volumes. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print. (ISBN 080630443X).
    2. Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin . Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8).
    3. Samuelsen, W. David. New York City Passenger List Manifests Index 1820 - 1824. North Salt Lake, Utah: Accelerated Indexing Systems International, 1986. Print.
    4. Egle, William Henry. Pennsylvania Genealogies Scotch-Irish and German. Harrisburg: L.S. Hart, 1886. Print.
    5. Marcharn, Frederick George. A Constitutional History of Modern England 1485 to the Present. London: Harper and Brothers, 1960. Print.
    6. Bradford, William. History of Plymouth Plantation 1620-1647 Edited by Samuel Eliot Morrison 2 Volumes. New York: Russell and Russell, 1968. Print.
    7. Passenger Lists of Vessels Arriving at Galveston Texas 1896-1951. National Archives Washington DC. Print.
    8. Le Patourel, John. The Norman Empire. New York: Oxford University Press, 1976. Print. (ISBN 0-19-822525-3).
    9. Robb H. Amanda and Andrew Chesler. Encyclopedia of American Family Names. New York: Haper Collins, 1995. Print. (ISBN 0-06-270075-8).
    10. Bowman, George Ernest. The Mayflower Reader A Selection of Articales from The Mayflower Descendent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
    11. ...

    The Virtue Family Crest was acquired from the archives. The Virtue Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

    This page was last modified on 21 May 2016 at 14:47.

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