Pierce / Family History
The Pierce ancient family history was found in the irishsurnames.com archives. Pierce is a baptismal name meaning 'the son of Peter', a name of great antiquity. Variants include Pearce, Pearse, Pears, Peers, Peirce, Pearson, Pierson and Peirson. This name is of Anglo-Saxon descent spreading to the Celtic countries of Ireland, Scotland and Wales in early times and is found in many mediaeval manuscripts throughout these countries. Examples of such are a Margota Peres, who was recorded in the 'Poll Tax' of the West Riding of Yorkshire, England, in the year 1379 and a John Pereson who was Bailie of Linlithgow, Scotland, in the year 1472. A Robertus Perisson was recorded in the 'Poll Tax' of the West Riding of Yorkshire in the year 1379. In Ireland a family of the name settled in 1566 and were granted estates by Elizabeth I, including the Abbey of Tristernagh in County Westmeath. The MacPearses of County Kerry, who played an important part on the Irish side in the Desmond wars, were a branch of the Fitzmaurices. The Gaelic form of the name is MacPiarais.The Pierce family crest (or coat of arms) came into existence many centuries ago. The process of creating these coats of arms began as early as the eleventh century although a form of Proto-Heraldry may have existed in some countries prior to this, including Ireland. The new more formalized art of Heraldry made it possible for families and even individual family members to have their very own family crest, coat of arms, including Pierce descendants.