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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright 2000 - 2014

Where did the English Chalk family come from? When did the Chalk family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the Chalk family history?

Chalk is an Anglo-Saxon name. The name was originally given to a whitewasher. Medieval buildings weren't painted, for paint was very expensive in the Middle Ages. Instead, they were whitewashed; covered in a paint-like emulsion of lime. It served to protect the houses against water, as well as look better. However, it didn't last very long; houses needed to be whitewashed at least twice a year, in the spring and fall. A "chalker" was a professional whitewasher; the name was originally derived from the Old English word cealcian, which meant "to whiten."

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One relatively recent invention that did much to standardize English spelling was the printing press. However, before its invention even the most literate people recorded their names according to sound rather than spelling. The spelling variations under which the name Chalk has appeared include Chalk, Chaulk, Chaulke, Chaulkey, Chalke, Chalker, Chalkley, Caulk and many more.

First found in Kent, where the Chalk family held a family seat from very ancient times, some say well before the Norman Conquest and the arrival of Duke William at Hastings in 1066 A.D.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Chalk research. Another 311 words(22 lines of text) covering the year 1624 is included under the topic Early Chalk History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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More information is included under the topic Early Chalk Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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At this time, the shores of the New World beckoned many English families that felt that the social climate in England was oppressive and lacked opportunity for change. Thousands left England at great expense in ships that were overcrowded and full of disease. A great portion of these settlers never survived the journey and even a greater number arrived sick, starving, and without a penny. The survivors, however, were often greeted with greater opportunity than they could have experienced back home. These English settlers made significant contributions to those colonies that would eventually become the United States and Canada. An examination of early immigration records and passenger ship lists revealed that people bearing the name Chalk arrived in North America very early:

Chalk Settlers in the United States in the 17th Century


  • Joseph Chalk, who settled in Virginia in 1635
  • Jo Chalk, aged 25, arrived in Virginia in 1635
  • Francis Chalk, who landed in Maryland in 1658

Chalk Settlers in the United States in the 18th Century


  • Peter Chalk, aged 23, arrived in Virginia in 1773
  • Steven Chalk, who arrived in Virginia in 1774

Chalk Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century


  • James Chalk, who was naturalized in New York in 1806
  • Thomas Chalk, who arrived in New York in 1825
  • Bella Chalk, aged 24, who landed in America from Burton on Trau, in 1892
  • Walter Chalk, aged 38, who emigrated to America, in 1893
  • Ellen Chalk, aged 25, who landed in America, in 1896


Chalk Settlers in the United States in the 20th Century


  • Henry R. Chalk, aged 37, who settled in America from London, England, in 1907
  • George Edmund Chalk, aged 40, who landed in America from Edinburgh, Scotland, in 1907
  • Gertrude Alice Chalk, aged 32, who settled in America from Malvern, England, in 1907
  • Edgar Ells Chalk, aged 31, who emigrated to the United States from London, England, in 1908
  • Alfred Chalk, aged 21, who landed in America from Christepurth, England, in 1908


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  • David Lee Chalk (b. 1950), American former Major League Baseball player who played from 1973 to 1981
  • Oscar Roy Chalk (1907-1995), English-born, New York financier and entrepreneur who owned real estate, airlines, bus companies, newspapers and more
  • Al Chalk (b. 1990), African American voice actor and actor, known for his work in In Living Color, Five Men and a Limo (1997) and Story of a People: The Black Road to Hollywood
  • Gary Chalk (b. 1952), English illustrator and model-maker
  • Frederick Gerald Hudson "Gerry" Chalk DFC (1910-1943), English cricketer
  • Robin Chalk (b. 1981), English film and stage actor, best known for his role as Neil Kellerman in the West End production of Dirty Dancing
  • Gary Chalk (b. 1952), British-born, Canadian two-time Gemini Award winning actor and voice actor who has worked on over 328 titles
  • Sir Gordon William Wesley Chalk KBE (1913-1991), Australian politician, 30th Premier of Queensland for one week in 1968
  • Alfred Ernest Chalk (1874-1954), British gold medalist footballer at the 1900 Olympic Games
  • David Ian Chalk (b. 1963), English-born, Canadian technology entrepreneur and host of the syndicated Dave Chalk's Computer Show


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  1. Cook, Chris. English Historical Facts 1603-1688. London: MacMillan, 1980. Print.
  2. MacAulay, Thomas Babington. History of England from the Accession of James the Second 4 volumes. New York: Harper and Brothers, 1879. Print.
  3. The Norman People and Their Existing Descendants in the British Dominions and the United States Of America. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0636-X).
  4. Lennard, Reginald. Rural England 1086-1135 A Study of Social and Agrarian Conditions. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1959. Print.
  5. Marcharn, Frederick George. A Constitutional History of Modern England 1485 to the Present. London: Harper and Brothers, 1960. Print.
  6. Crozier, William Armstrong Edition. Crozier's General Armory A Registry of American Families Entitled to Coat Armor. New York: Fox, Duffield, 1904. Print.
  7. Bardsley, C.W. A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6).
  8. Burke, John Bernard Ed. The Roll of Battle Abbey. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  9. Library of Congress. American and English Genealogies in the Library of Congress. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1967. Print.
  10. Mills, A.D. Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4).
  11. ...


This page was last modified on 22 January 2014 at 07:20.

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