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

Origins Available: English, German, Jewish

Where did the English Lowe family come from? What is the English Lowe family crest and coat of arms? When did the Lowe family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the Lowe family history?

Lowe is a name that was carried to England in the great wave of migration from Normandy following the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Lowe family lived in Worcestershire. The earliest instances of the name in England appear for the most part to be of local origin; that is, derived from the name of the place where an original bearer lived or where he once held land, the place in this instance being a hlaw, the Old English word for a hill. Any individual case may also be of nickname origin, deriving from loup, the Old French word for a wolf, or from one of the pet-names for Lawrence, such as Law or Low.

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Before English spelling was standardized a few hundred years ago, spelling variations of names were a common occurrence. Elements of Latin, Norman French and other languages became incorporated into English throughout the Middle Ages, and name spellings changed even among the literate. The variations of the surname Lowe include Lowe, Lowes, Lowis, Lowse, Low, McLoy and others.

First found in Worcestershire where they held a family seat from very early times and were granted lands by Duke William of Normandy, their liege Lord, for their distinguished assistance at the Battle of Hastings in 1066 A.D.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Lowe research. Another 185 words(13 lines of text) covering the years 1275, 1433, 1439, 1318, 1594, 1682, 1640, 1644, 1628, 1667, 1661, 1667, 1690, 1724 and 1720 are included under the topic Early Lowe History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Another 135 words(10 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Lowe Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Some of the Lowe family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 161 words(12 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.

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In England at this time, the uncertainty of the political and religious environment of the time caused many families to board ships for distant British colonies in the hopes of finding land and opportunity, and escaping persecution. The voyages were expensive, crowded, and difficult, though, and many arrived in North America sick, starved, and destitute. Those who did make it, however, were greeted with greater opportunities and freedoms that they could have experienced at home. Many of those families went on to make important contributions to the young nations in which they settled. Early immigration records have shown some of the first Lowes to arrive on North American shores:

Lowe Settlers in the United States in the 17th Century


  • Jan Bastiansen Lowe, who landed in New Netherland(s) in 1620-1664
  • Jon Lowe, who arrived in Virginia in 1635
  • Dorothy Lowe settled in Boston in 1635
  • Dorothie Lowe, aged 13, landed in America in 1635
  • Tho Lowe, who landed in Virginia in 1636


Lowe Settlers in the United States in the 18th Century


  • Clemans Lowe, who landed in Virginia in 1701-1702
  • Abraham Lowe, who landed in Maryland in 1716
  • Henry, Lowe Sr., who landed in Maryland in 1731
  • Freiderich Lowe, who arrived in Pennsylvania in 1749
  • Johannes Lowe, who arrived in Pennsylvania in 1750


Lowe Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century


  • Elizabeth Lowe, aged 28, landed in America in 1810
  • John Lowe, who landed in Charleston, South Carolina in 1820
  • George S E Lowe, who arrived in New York, NY in 1826
  • Hugh Lowe, who landed in Maryland in 1828
  • F Lowe, who arrived in North America in 1832-1849


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  • Edward Lowe (1920-1995), American businessman and inventor of "Kitty Litter"
  • Alex Lowe (1958-1999), American mountaineer
  • Lucius S. Lowe (d. 1940), American founder of Lowe's North Wilkesboro Hardware in 1921 which grew to become Lowe's Home Improvement Warehouse with over 1,794 stores worldwide
  • Rob Lowe (b. 1964), American actor
  • Major-General Frank E. Lowe (1885-1968), American Personal Representative of the President in Korea (1950-1951)
  • Brigadier-General Thomas Merritt Lowe (1901-1962), American Inspector-General, 307th Bombardment Wing (1948)
  • Arthur Lowe (1914-1982), English character actor
  • Alex Lowe (b. 1968), English actor
  • Charles Lowe (1890-1953), English cricketer
  • Harold Lowe (1882-1944), English fifth officer on the RMS Titanic who survived the sinking

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The motto was originally a war cry or slogan. Mottoes first began to be shown with arms in the 14th and 15th centuries, but were not in general use until the 17th century. Thus the oldest coats of arms generally do not include a motto. Mottoes seldom form part of the grant of arms: Under most heraldic authorities, a motto is an optional component of the coat of arms, and can be added to or changed at will; many families have chosen not to display a motto.

Motto: Spero meliora
Motto Translation: I hope for better things.

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  1. Papworth, J.W and A.W Morant. Ordinary of British Armorials. London: T.Richards, 1874. Print.
  2. Markale, J. Celtic Civilization. London: Gordon & Cremonesi, 1976. Print.
  3. Egle, William Henry. Pennsylvania Genealogies Scotch-Irish and German. Harrisburg: L.S. Hart, 1886. Print.
  4. Lennard, Reginald. Rural England 1086-1135 A Study of Social and Agrarian Conditions. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1959. Print.
  5. Le Patourel, John. The Norman Empire. New York: Oxford University Press, 1976. Print. (ISBN 0-19-822525-3).
  6. Hinde, Thomas Ed. The Domesday Book England's Heritage Then and Now. Surrey: Colour Library Books, 1995. Print. (ISBN 1-85833-440-3).
  7. Hanks, Patricia and Flavia Hodges. A Dictionary of Surnames. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988. Print. (ISBN 0-19-211592-8).
  8. Ingram, Rev. James. Translator Anglo-Saxon Chronicle 1823. Print.
  9. Hanks, Hodges, Mills and Room. The Oxford Names Companion. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2002. Print. (ISBN 0-19-860561-7).
  10. MacAulay, Thomas Babington. History of England from the Accession of James the Second 4 volumes. New York: Harper and Brothers, 1879. Print.
  11. ...

The Lowe Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Lowe Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

This page was last modified on 23 August 2014 at 20:00.

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