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

Origins Available: English, Irish

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

The name Miles came to England with the ancestors of the Miles family in the Norman Conquest of 1066. It comes from the given name Miles or Milo. The name Miles is of Germanic origin and is derived from the Old German word mil, which meant beloved. The family name Miles was brought to England after the Norman Conquest, when William the Conqueror gave his friends and relatives most of the land formerly owned by Anglo-Saxon aristocrats. This distinguished family descended from Miles, who was the Marshall of Duke William and who held lands at Caen, Vauceles, and Venoix in Normandy. The Norman conquerors imported a vast number of continental European personal names, such as the name Miles, which largely replaced traditional Old English personal names among the upper and middle classes.

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Anglo-Norman names tend to be marked by an enormous number of spelling variations. This is largely due to the fact that Old and Middle English lacked any spelling rules when Norman French was introduced in the 11th century. The languages of the English courts at that time were French and Latin. These various languages mixed quite freely in the evolving social milieu. The final element of this mix is that medieval scribes spelled words according to their sounds rather than any definite rules, so a name was often spelled in as many different ways as the number of documents it appeared in. The name was spelled Miles, Myles and others.

First found in Hampshire 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 Miles research. Another 208 words(15 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Miles History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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

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Some of the Miles family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 93 words(7 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Because of the political and religious discontent in England, families began to migrate abroad in enormous numbers. Faced with persecution and starvation at home, the open frontiers and generally less oppressive social environment of the New World seemed tantalizing indeed to many English people. The trip was difficult, and not all made it unscathed, but many of those who did get to Canada and the United States made important contributions to the young nations in which they settled. Some of the first North American settlers with Miles name or one of its variants:

Miles Settlers in the United States in the 17th Century


  • Henry Miles, who came to Virginia in 1633
  • Elizabeth Miles, who came to Virginia in 1634
  • Anthony Miles, who arrived in Virginia in 1635
  • Lewes Miles, who came to Virginia in 1635
  • Anto Miles, aged 11, arrived in Virginia in 1635


Miles Settlers in the United States in the 18th Century


  • Alce Miles, who arrived in Pennsylvania in 1709
  • David Miles, who arrived in Pennsylvania in 1709
  • Daniel Miles, who landed in Virginia in 1716
  • Christian Miles, who arrived in America in 1760-1763

Miles Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century


  • Henry Miles, who landed in New York in 1826
  • Edward Miles, who landed in Charleston, South Carolina in 1828
  • Jonah Miles, who arrived in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1832
  • Martin Miles, who landed in Pennsylvania in 1838
  • Wilhelm Miles, aged 41, landed in Missouri in 1842


Miles Settlers in the United States in the 20th Century


  • George Miles, who landed in Wisconsin in 1914

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  • Nelson Appleton Miles (1839-1925), American Army officer
  • Aaron Miles (b. 1976), American Major League Baseball player
  • Josephine Miles (1911-1985), American poet, and literature critic, Professor in the English Department at the University of California, Berkeley
  • Louis Wardlaw Miles (1873-1944), American World War I Medal of Honor recipient
  • Vera Miles (b. 1929), American film actress popular for playing in such films as The Searchers, Psycho, The Wrong Man and The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance
  • Lieutenant-General Sherman Miles (1882-1966), American Commanding General 1st Service Command (1942-1945)
  • John Miles (1922-2013), nicknamed "Mule", American Negro League Baseball player for the Chicago American Giants from 1946-1949, inducted into the Texas Black Sports Hall of Fame (2000)
  • William Miles (1931-2013), American Academy Award nominated filmmaker
  • Bernard Miles (1907-1991), English character actor, writer, and director
  • Charlie Creed- Miles (b. 1972), English actor

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  • L.D. Miles: His Ancestors and Descendants by Carol Bickel Cramer.
  • Thomas Hill and Rebecca Miles: Ancestors and Descendants by Mary Louise Donnelly.
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  1. Robb H. Amanda and Andrew Chesler. Encyclopedia of American Family Names. New York: Haper Collins, 1995. Print. (ISBN 0-06-270075-8).
  2. Bradford, William. History of Plymouth Plantation 1620-1647 Edited by Samuel Eliot Morrison 2 Volumes. New York: Russell and Russell, 1968. Print.
  3. Lennard, Reginald. Rural England 1086-1135 A Study of Social and Agrarian Conditions. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1959. Print.
  4. Filby, P. William and Mary K Meyer. Passenger and Immigration Lists Index in Four Volumes. Detroit: Gale Research, 1985. Print. (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8).
  5. Bede, The Venerable. Historia Ecclesiatica Gentis Anglorum (The Ecclesiastical History Of the English People). Available through Internet Medieval Sourcebook the Fordham University Centre for Medieval Studies. Print.
  6. Humble, Richard. The Fall of Saxon England. New York: Barnes and Noble, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-88029-987-8).
  7. Hanks, Patricia and Flavia Hodges. A Dictionary of Surnames. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988. Print. (ISBN 0-19-211592-8).
  8. Sanders, Joanne McRee Edition. English Settlers in Barbados 1637-1800. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  9. Virkus, Frederick A. Ed. Immigrant Ancestors A List of 2,500 Immigrants to America Before 1750. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1964. Print.
  10. Leeson, Francis L. Dictionary of British Peerages. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1986. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-1121-5).
  11. ...

The Miles Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Miles 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 27 March 2014 at 19:16.

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