Summers Family Crest, Coat of Arms and Name History
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Summers Surname Name Meaning, Origin, History, & Etymology
The surname Summers has eight origin stories! First, it developed as a patronymic form of the surname Summer in England. The surname Summer is both an English and German name that comes from the Middle English word sumer or summer and the Middle High German sumer, meaning “summer”. It was likely a nickname referring to a person who had a warm or sunny disposition, or for someone related to the summer season in some manner, such as being born in the summer. Author Charles Wareing Endell Bardsley stated “Just as ecclesiastical seasons gave us such personal names as Noel, Pentecost, Pask, Christmas, &c, so several centuries earlier popular names for children were descriptive of the natural season in which the child was born, or even the state of the weather. Hence such personal names as Snow, Storm, Winter, Summer, Spring”.
Second, it may be an assimilated variant of the surname Sumner, an English occupational name for a summoner, an official in the Middle Ages whose job it was to ensure the witnesses in a trial were present for the court session, from the Middle English word sumner or sumnor.
Third, in Ireland, the surname Summers was adopted as an English equivalent of the Irish or Gaelic name O’Somachain, which means “descendant of Somachan”, a nickname that means innocent or gentle.
Fourth, in Ireland, particularly in Munster and Leinster, the name Summer is a partial Anglicization of the Gaelic name O’Samhraidh, meaning descendant of Samhradh, an ancient personal (first) name meaning summer.
Fifth, in Ireland, it may be an Anglicized version of Irish last names such as O’Sawrie or O’Sawra.
Sixth, it may derive from the Middle High German word summer, meaning woven basket, and by extension, a measure of grain, or a drum, and therefore, the name is a metonymic occupational name in these senses.
Seventh, some believe the Summers surname derives from the Old French word somier, meaning a sumpter, which was a person who drove pack animals such as mules and horses. There was a baronial family with the surname de Someri and a one Ralph de Summeri loved in Normandy, France during the reign of King John I of England (1199-1216 AD).
Eighth, Henry Barber, in his 1903 book titled British Family Names, states the following in regard to this last name: “A location name in Essex Orfrom the Flemish, Somerset; a personal name”. Doris Matney Weatherly states “The Summers Family is said to be of Flemish origin and to have been 1st known in England at the time of the Reformation. Property was granted to them at a former religious seat a short distance from Worcester and this became the family seat. Here they resided and here they entertained Queen Elizabeth in her progress through Worcestershire in 1585. Many of the members of this family became men of distinction and renown. One branch of the family moved to Dorsetshire, England and it is from this branch that the Virginian family is descended. The name is variously spelled Somers, Sommers, Sumers, and Summers but the Virginians of this stock have in general used the form Summers”.
The last name first established itself in Worcestershire in west central England and their ancestry can be traced back to the manor of Whiteladies. In Germany, it first took root in Bavaria. Spelling variants or names with similar etymologies include Sumer, Summer, Sumers, Somers, Sommers, Sommer, Sumner, Simmers, Simmer (Scottish) Symers, and Symmers.
It is interesting to note the Bermuda Islands, a British Overseas Territory located in the North Atlantic Oceans were once known as The Somers Isles, named after Sir George Somers (1554-1610) who was the Admiral of the Virginia Company (also known as the London Company, an English joint stock company established by royal chart in 1606 by King James I), whose flagship, Sea Venture, wrecked on the reefs near the islands.
Early Bearers of the Summers Surname
The first known bearers of this surname was William Sumer who was recorded around 1180 AD in Edinburgh, Scotland in a document titled the “Charters of the Hospital of Soltre”. William le Sumeter is documented in the Assize Rolls of Worcester, England in 1221 AD. Adam Sumer is documented in Essex in 1223 AD. William Somer is listed in the Worcestershire Pipe Rolls of 1275 AD. William Somyr was granted free rent for life by King David II of Scotland in 1327 AD. John Somerys is listed in the Subsidy Rolls of Somerset in 1377 AD.
Popularity & Geographic Distribution
The last name Summers ranks 541th popularity in the United Status as of the 2000 Census. The name ranks particularly high in the following four states: West Virginia (166th), Idaho (197th), Missouri (224th), and Indiana (246th).
The surname Summers frequency/commonness ranks as follows in the British Isles: England (494th), Scotland (537th), Wales (293rd), Ireland (3,145th) and Northern Ireland (3,380th). In England, it ranks highest in counties City of Bristol and Gloucestershire. In Scotland, the surname ranks highest in Shetland and Aberdeenshire. In Ireland, it ranks highest in Ulster.
The name is also present throughout the remainder English speaking world: Canada (1,404th), New Zealand (1,125th), Australia (592nd), and South Africa (2,968th).
Summers Family Tree & Summers Genealogy
Henry Summers (or Sumner, Somner, Somers) was born in England sometime before 1620. In 1635, he married Elizabeth Worden in England. He went to colonial America and married Mabel, daughter of John Kendall, in Woburn, Middlesex, Massachusetts in November 1660. He had two sons: Henry and John. Henry was born around 1640. He married twice: Sarah Gregory and Mary Holbrook. He had four sons: Samuel, Henry, John, and Joseph. His son, Sgt. Samuel Summers, was born around 1669 in Stratford, Fairfield, Connecticut. He married Abigail Read in 1697 and had the following issue: Daniel, Abigail, Samuel, David Sr., Nathan, Abigail, Deborah, Sarah, Hannah, and Ruth. His son, Nathan, was born in Stratford Summers in 1703. He married twice: Martha Treadwell in 1730 and Comfort Lattin in 1754. He had the following children: Sarah, Zachariah Sanford, Samuel, Abigail (Minor), Nathan, and Aaron. His son Zarachariah Sanford Summers was born in the same town in 1734. He married Marth Burr and had the following issue with her: Hezekiah, Sarah, Martha, Philip, and Betty. His son Philip was born around 1700.
John Summers was born in Middlesex, Virginia around 1668. In 1717, he married Sythia Harrison and had two issue: Elizabeth and Thomas. The son, Thomas Harrison Summers, was born in Lee, Virginia around 1736. He married Elizabeth Gibbons and had the following issue with her: William, Thomas Jr., Richard, Isaac, Rebecca, and Jeremiah. Isaac was born around 1770. He married Mary Polly Green and had the following issue with her: Aaron, Johnson, Nancy, Ninevah, Moses, and Isaac. His son, Aaron Summers, was born in Rowan, North Carlina in 1795. He married Catherine Roberts and had the following issue with her: Richard Asberry, Malendy, Aaron Jr., Bathsheba, Elizabeth, Caroline, and George Washington. Richard Asberry Summers was born in Wayne, Kentucky in 1831. He married twice: Talitha Phipps and Mildred Turner and had a son named Squire. Squire Summers was born in Randolph, Missouri in 1862. He died in Belfry, Montana in 1923.
1) Thomas Summers married Jone Elles in Horningsham, Wiltshire, England in 1566
2) Richerd Summers married Mary Scot in Heddington, Wiltshire, England in 1599
3) Edward Summers married Philip Tottnell in Steeple Gidding, Huntingdon, England in 1593
4) John Summers married Elizabeth Davis in All Saints, Worcester, England in 1594
5) Sarah Summers married Richard Hoatten in Steyning, Sussex, England in 1655
6) Elizabeth Summers married Josiah Clark in Boston, Massachusetts in 1708
7) James Summers married Mary Davis in Delaware, Pennsylvania in 1729
8) Lydia Summers married William Pearce in England in 1761
9) Samuel Summers married Sarah White in England in 1819
10) David Summers married Mary Jurdin in Coventry Parish, Rehobeth, Maryland in 1749
11) Bartley Summers married Maud Crawford in Hamilton County, Ohio in 1901
12) Charles B. Summers married Fanny M. Latteir in Erie, Ohio in 1869
Early American and New World Settlers
Some of the earliest settlers in colonial America bearing this name include:
1) Robert Summers came to Virginia in 1638
2) Alexander Summers came to Virginia in 1638
3) John Summers came in 1664
4) Roger Summer came to Maryland in 1665
5) Oliver Summers came to Maryland in 1675
6) Ann Summers came to Maryland in 1674
7) Eleanor Summers came to Maryland in 1676
8) Thomas Summers came to Maryland in 1676
9) Thomas Summers came to Maryland in 1678
10) Mary Summers came to Maryland in 1669
11) Robert Summers came to Maryland in 1682
12) John Summers came to Pennsylvania in 1682
Several thousand members of the Summers family came to the United States through Ellis Island, during the nineteenth century, including:
1) Jonathan Summers came from England aboard the City of Richmond in 1877
2) William Summers came from England aboard the Britannia in 1887
3) Henry Summers came from England aboard the Servia in 1888
4) Thomas Summers came from England aboard the Wisconsin in 1875
5) Ellen Summers came from Ireland aboard the Marathon in 1881
6) John Summers came from Scotland aboard the Astoria in 1907
7) Harry Summers came from Worcester, England aboard the Campania in 1913
8) David Summers came from Swansea, Wales aboard the Lucania in 1904
9) Ludwig Summers came from Heillberg, Germany aboard the Columbia in 1912
10) Sarah J. Summers came aboard the Majestic in 1893
11) Mary E. Summers came from Scotland aboard the England in 1880
12) Louisa Summers came from England aboard the SS Colorado in 1869
Some of the earliest settlers in Canada bearing this name include:
1) Jacob Summers came to Quebec, Canada in 1787 aboard the
2) David Summers came to Canada in 1796
3) Andrew Summers came to Canada in 1796
4) Jacob Summers came to Canada in 1796
5) Peter Summers came to Canada in 1817
Some of the earliest settlers in Australia bearing this name include:
1) John Summers came to New South Wales in 1806 aboard the Tellicherry
2) Thomas Summers came to New South Wales in 1816 aboard the Atlas III
3) Robert Summers came to New South Wales in 1816 aboard the Guildford
4) Thomas Summers came to New South Wales in 1817 aboard the Lord Eldon
5) Richard Summers came to New South Wales in 1818 aboard the Lord Melville I
Some of the earliest settlers in New Zealand bearing this name include:
1) Andrew Summers came to Wellington in 1849 aboard the Mariner
2) Jessie Summers came to Wellington in 1849 aboard the Mariner
3) Thomas H. Summers came to Wellington in 1876 aboard the Waimea
4) Margaret Summers came to Auckland in 1875 aboard the Warwick
5) Henry D. Summers came in 1887 aboard the Ruapehu
There are hundreds of notable people with the Summers surname. This page will mention a handful. Famous people with this last name include:
1) Lawrence Henry Summers (1954) is an American economist from New Haven Connecticut who comes from the New Keynesian school and has served in a variety of offices including Chief Economist of the World Bank (1991-1993), US Secretary of the Treasury (1999-2001), and President of Harvard University (2001-2006)
2) Sarah Hope Summers (1902-1979) was an American actress from Mattoon, Illinois who is best known known for playing Clara Edwards on The Andy Griffith Show.
3) John William Summers (1870-1937) was a member of the US House of Representatives from Washington from 1919-1933
4) George William Summers (1804-1868) was an attorney and judge who served in the US House of Representatives for Virginia from 1841-1845, born in Fairfax County
5) John Junior “Champ” Summers (1946-2012) was a professional baseball player from Bremerton, Washington who played a decade in the MLB from 1974-1984 for six different teams including the Chicago Cubs and Cincinnati Reds
6) John Lawrence Summers (1915-1991) was a professional football (soccer) player from Chorlton, England who plated for several teams from 1932-1938 including Burnley and Leicester City
7) Oron Edgar Summers (1884-1953) nicknamed Kickapoo Ed (because of his indigenous Mexican ancestry) was a professional baseball player from Ladoga, Indiana who played for the Detroit Tigers from 1908-1912
8) Captain John Kenneth Summers (1894) was a British Flying Ace during World War I, credited with eight aerial victories, born in Shamian Island, Canton, China
9) Richard Henry Bowlas Summers (1860-1941) was a Welsh rugby player who plated for Haverfordwest and was part of the first Wales international team that played England in 1881
10) William Reed Summers (1895-1966) was an Umpire in the MLB who worked in the American League from 1933-1959, born in Harrison, New Jersey
Summers America Civil War Veterans
There were several soldiers with the last name Summers who served in the American Civil War, including the following:
1) Thomas M. Summers of the 58th Regiment Illinois Infantry (Union)
2) Jesse A. Summers of the 18th Regiment Indiana Infantry (Union)
3) James M. Summers of the 58th Regiment Illinois (Union)
4) C.S. Summers of the 5th Regiment Alabama Infantry (Confederacy)
5) Joseph Summers of the 2nd Regiment Alabama Reserve (Confederacy)
6) George D. Summers of the 2nd Regiment Maryland Regiment (Union)
7) Charles W. Summers of the 2nd Regiment Missouri Cavalry (Union)
8) Marshal Summers of the 1st Regiment New Jersey Cavalry (Union)
9) Melchon Summers of the 143rd Regiment Pennsylvania Infantry (Union)
10) Benjamin F. Summers of the 45th Regiment Tennessee Infantry (Confederacy)
11) Frank Summers of the 34th Regiment Tennessee Infantry (Confederacy)
12) George R. Summers of the 24th Regiment Kentucky Infantry (Union)
Summers America Revolution Veterans
There were several soldiers with the last name Summers who served in the Revolutionary War, including the following:
1) Sergeant George Summers of North Carolina
2) Private John Summers of Virginia
3) Private James Summers of New Jersey
4) Lieutenant John Summers of North Carolina
5) Major Simon Summers of Virginia
6) Captain of John Summers of North Carolina
7) Lieutenant Peter Summers of Pennsylvania
8) Private Mathias Summers of Pennsylvania
9) Private Thomas Summers of Pennsylvania
10) Sergeant Obadiah Summers of Maryland
11) Private Thomas Summers of Rhode Island
12) Corporal Farrell Summers
Blazons & Genealogy Notes
1) Vert a fess dancettée erm. Crest—On a globe winged ppr. an eagle rising or.
2) Quarterly, gu. and vert, in the 1st and 4th a fleurs-de-lis, in the 2nd and 3rd a cross avellane invecked or, over all a fess dancettée erm.