Yard History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The ancestors of the Yard surname lived among the ancient Anglo-Saxon culture. The name comes from when they lived in Devon. Their name, however, refers to the Old English word yarde, meaning an area of thirty acres, and indicates that the family once lived on such a piece of land.

Early Origins of the Yard family

The surname Yard was first found in Devon where they held a family seat from ancient times, before and after the Norman Conquest in 1066.

Early History of the Yard family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Yard research. Another 75 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Yard History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Yard 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 Yard include Yard, Yarde, Yeard, Yeards and others.

Early Notables of the Yard family (pre 1700)

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


United States Yard 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:

Yard Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • William Yard, who settled in Virginia in 1635
  • William Yard, aged 21, who landed in Virginia in 1635 [1]
  • Susan Yard, who settled in Virginia in 1654
  • Henry Yard, who arrived in Virginia in 1695 [1]
Yard Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Thomas Yard, who settled in Boston Massachusetts in 1767

Canada Yard migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Yard Settlers in Canada in the 17th Century
  • John Yard, who settled in Ferryland, Newfoundland in 1675 [2]
Yard Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century
  • Samuel and Christopher Yard, who settled in Bay Bulls, Newfoundland, in 1793 [2]

Australia Yard migration to Australia +

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

Yard Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • James Yard, aged 18, a labourer, who arrived in South Australia in 1855 aboard the ship "Agincourt"

Contemporary Notables of the name Yard (post 1700) +

  • Robert Sterling Yard (1861-1945), American writer, journalist, and wilderness activist
  • Molly Yard (1912-2005), American feminist
  • Douglas Dale Yard, Canadian jurist, appointed a judge of the Family Division of the Court of Queen's Bench of Manitoba on October 7, 1998


The Yard 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: Facta non verba
Motto Translation: Deeds not words.


  1. ^ 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)
  2. ^ Seary E.R., Family Names of the Island of Newfoundland, Montreal: McGill's-Queen's Universtity Press 1998 ISBN 0-7735-1782-0


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