Sumner Genealogy

Sumner Crest

Welcome to the Sumner Family Tree.

This particular Sumner family seems to have originated in Wiltshire, south-west of Devizes, around the the group of villages of Erlestoke, Potterne and Seend. Many centuries later spreading to Cheltenham, Bristol and worldwide. However the Sumner surname goes back much further. It is probably the name is of Old French or early medieval English origin and may have been introduced to England some time after the Norman Conquest (1066). There have been several variation of this surname, with Sumener being recorded in the 12th century, followed by Sumnor, Sumnir, Sumnour and even Simnir and Simnor.

Over the years the surname has changed. Originally, records show the name as Sumpner and Sumpter - possibly archaic names for a pack animal. In other words, the owner of a packhorse would have been referred to as a Sumpner or Sumpter, and then changing over the years to Sumner and Somner. Later the name Sumner had two possible occupational meanings - (1) a Court Summoner and (2) a local official whose job it was to ensure all parishioners attended church each week. This tree follows the Sumpner's and then the Sumner's. Although there are a few Somners in this tree, most seem to have taken a separate line (more research is needed).

Although old records (or references) have been found for the first six generations shown in this tree (the Sumpners), unfortunately they don't include dates, so those included here are estimated, based on 20 to 25 years for each generation, taking the starting date back to about 1405.

With nearly 12000 individuals in my family tree it has become unmanageable to display on a single web site. Therefore the whole tree has been split into a number of smaller sites based on major family groups within the Sumner tree. This means that there is some overlapping of surnames, and some extremely distant members of the family may not be included. The surnames that interest you may also be found in any of these sub-trees, so it's probably worth checking on the Index pages of these sites -


Sumner     Kennett (North Kent)     Kennett (South Kent)     Bruton      Heath    Few

Oram    Stump    Sherring    Seymour (Dukes of Somerset)     Gum     Shurmer     Hawker