Guild of One-Name Studies
One-name studies, Genealogy
Variants: Carhartt, Carheart
Category: 2 - A study where research using core genealogical datasets and transcriptions is well under way, but currently in some countries only.
Contact: JeanAnn Carhart
I have run across many Carhart names in records in the United States as well as England and Australia that were not of my direct line, but did not want to lose the information should I find the connection, so have been capturing this information in my database throughout my research.
My direct linage is tied together nicely with supporting data, so now I will undertake the task of piecing together the other Carhart lines and perhaps, with the more data that is added, I will be able to link the smaller trees with my direct line.
Hambley Rowe, a genealogist in 1935 wrote of his research of the Carhart name:
"The Carhart's of Cornwall spring chiefly as far as my experience in Cornish genealogy goes from the North Western side of the county, from the parish of St. Breock near Padstow where there is a farmstead called Carhart today. In 1279 and 1284 it was called Corharta; in 1342 Carhurta and circa 1300 Kaerhorta.
Caer, of course means a camp or fortified site earthworks and hordt means a ram with the final "a" occurring in the early spellings. It would mean "the encampment of the rams". But whether the ram refers to the tribal nickname or whether the site was the resort of wild sheep will perhaps never be known."
Ancestry.com lists the Carhart name as meaning the Americanized for of German Gerhardt. This is obviously incorrect information.
There are two coats of arms that have been associated with the surname. The first described in "A Genealogical Record of the Descendants of Thomas Carhart", Dusenbury, 1880:
Arms. - "Argent, two bars sable, in chief a demi-griffin, issuant of the last." Crest. - "A demi-man, naked, argent, a wreath above his head sable, in right hand an oaken branch vert, acorns or."
The second coat of arms is similar for the arms with two bars and the demi-griffin. The crest of this second version is a ram.
The earliest known record of the name is that of Sarah, daughter of Roger Carhurta, of Devonshire, married John Cottell, of Yoembridge, in Devon around 1420. In the visitations of Devonshire, 1565, is found the record of the marriage of Thomas Carhurta with Margery, daughter of Richard Malherb, but the date of the marriage was not recorded.
The Cornwall branch of the Carhart family was established as early as 1550, but the records of this line are fragmentary. Anthony Carhart, who was living in Cornwall before 1650, was the father about that year of a son, Thomas Carhart, who came to America in 1683 and is believed to have been the progenitor of most of the families with the Carhart name in the United States.
My family was one exception. My ancestor, Stephen Carhart, arrived in Wisconsin from Cornwall in 1842, much later than the line of Thomas Carhart. I am fairly certain I have accurately researched and documented the lineage of Stephen Carhart in the United States.
Among those of the name who have been prominent in America are:
Arthur Hawthorne Carhart (1892 - 1978), of Denver, Colorado, author and conservationist.
Daniel Carhart (1839 - 1937), of New Jersey and Pennsylvania, educator, civil engineer, and author.
Jeremiah Carhart (1813-1868), of New York, manufacturer and inventor.
Hamilton Carhartt (1855 - 1937), of New York and Michigan, cotton manufacturer. Founded the Carhartt apparel manufacturer and retailer.
Henry Smith Carhart (1844 - 1920) of New York and Michigan, educator, scientist, and author.
John Ernest Carhart (1878 - 1943) of Ohio, clergyman.
LeRoy Harrison Carhart (1941 - ), of Nebraska, physician.
Raymond Thomas Carhart (1912 - 1975) born in Mexico City, Mexico. Professor of Audiology, Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois.
The following show the census returns search on Ancestry.com for the frequency of the Carhart name in the United States. From 1790 through 1840, the number represents households only.
Year 1790 1800 1810 1820 1830 1840 1850 1860
US 1 7 11 20 53 69 544 597
Year 1870 1880 1900 1910 1920 1930 1940
US 691 666 935 1,070 1,053 1,038 917
These figures are taken from the census indexes, not the actual census returns, so include transcription errors made by the enumerators on the night of the census as well as by the transcribers when compiling the indexes.
My Carhart data includes -
Birth, Marriage and Death records:
Census records from US and UK
Commonwealth War Graves Commission
The process of gathering data is ongoing and if would like to send me your own tree I would be extremely interested to see if we make a connection.
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