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

Origins Available: English, Scottish

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

The name Mills reached England in the great wave of migration following the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Mills family lived at or near a mill having derived from the Old English word mylen, which meant mill.


Before the advent of the printing press and the first dictionaries, the English language was not standardized. Sound was what guided spelling in the Middle Ages, so one person's name was often recorded under several variations during a single lifetime. Spelling variations were common, even among the names of the most literate people. Known variations of the Mills family name include Mills, Mylles, Meiles 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.


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Mills research. Another 253 words(18 lines of text) covering the years 1593, 1604, 1676, 1659, 1660, 1621, 1683, 1660, 1645, 1707 and are included under the topic Early Mills History in all our PDF Extended History products.


Another 141 words(10 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Mills Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.


Some of the Mills family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 101 words(7 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.


To escape the political and religious chaos of this era, thousands of English families began to migrate to the New World in search of land and freedom from religious and political persecution. The passage was expensive and the ships were dark, crowded, and unsafe; however, those who made the voyage safely were encountered opportunities that were not available to them in their homeland. Many of the families that reached the New World at this time went on to make important contributions to the emerging nations of the United States and Canada. Research into various historical records has revealed some of first members of the Mills family to immigrate North America:

Mills Settlers in the United States in the 17th Century

  • Alice Mills, who arrived in Virginia in 1634
  • Robert Mills, aged 19, arrived in Barbados in 1634
  • Thomazin Mills, aged 38, landed in Virginia in 1635
  • Jon Mills, who arrived in Virginia in 1642
  • Lewis Mills, who arrived in Virginia in 1642

Mills Settlers in the United States in the 18th Century

  • Sarah Mills, who arrived in Virginia in 1701
  • Eliza Mills, who landed in Virginia in 1701
  • Anne Mills, who arrived in Virginia in 1714
  • David Mills, who landed in Maryland in 1716
  • Janus Mills, who landed in Virginia in 1741

Mills Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century

  • Allen Mills, who landed in America in 1800
  • Frances Mills, aged 28, landed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1803
  • John Augustus Mills, who landed in New York in 1807
  • George Mills, who arrived in New York , NY in 1812
  • Andrew Mills, who landed in America in 1819

Mills Settlers in the United States in the 20th Century

  • Gibson Mills, who arrived in Arkansas in 1906


  • Ogden Livingston Mills (1884-1937), American political leader
  • Clark Mills (1915-2001), American designer and builder of boats
  • Harlan D. Mills (1919-1996), Professor of Computer Science at the Florida Institute of Technology
  • Michael Edward Mills (b. 1958), American rock musician, bass guitar player for the band R.E.M
  • Wilbur Daigh Mills (1909-1992), American politician and chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee in the 1960s
  • Derek Mills (b. 1972), American 1996 Olympic Games gold medalist in the men's 4x400 meter relay
  • Charles Wright Mills (1916-1962), American sociologist
  • Corporal James Henry Mills (1923-1973), American soldier awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor in 1944
  • Sir John Lewis Ernest Watts Mills CBE (1908-2005), English actor who made more than 120 films in a career spanning seven decades
  • Mr. Christopher Mills, aged 51, English Butcher from Southampton, Hampshire who worked aboard the RMS Titanic and survived the sinking by escaping in collapsible C



  • The Mill Family of West Virginia and Eastern Kentucky by Roger L. Mills.
  • Pamunkey Neighbors of Orange County, Virginia: Transcriptions from the Original Files of County Court in Virginia, Kentucky, and Missouri of Wills, Deeds, Order Book & Marriages as well as some Family Lines.

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: Honor virtutis pretium
Motto Translation: Honour is the reward of virtue.


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  1. Weis, Frederick Lewis, Walter Lee Sheppard and David Faris. Ancestral Roots of Sixty Colonists Who Came to New England Between 1623 and 1650 7th Edition. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0806313676).
  2. Shaw, William A. Knights of England A Complete Record from the Earliest Time to the Present Day of the Knights of all the Orders of Chivalry in England, Scotland, Ireland and Knights Bachelors 2 Volumes. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print. (ISBN 080630443X).
  3. Ingram, Rev. James. Translator Anglo-Saxon Chronicle 1823. Print.
  4. Reaney P.H and R.M. Wilson. A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X).
  5. Passenger Lists of Vessels Arriving at Galveston Texas 1896-1951. National Archives Washington DC. Print.
  6. Foster, Joseph. Dictionary of Heraldry Feudal Coats of Arms and Pedigrees. London: Bracken Books, 1989. Print. (ISBN 1-85170-309-8).
  7. Shirley, Evelyn Philip. Noble and Gentle Men of England Or Notes Touching The Arms and Descendants of the Ancient Knightley and Gentle Houses of England Arranged in their Respective Counties 3rd Edition. Westminster: John Bowyer Nichols and Sons, 1866. Print.
  8. Burke, Sir Bernard. Burke's Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Landed Gentry: Including American Families with British Ancestry. (2 Volumes). London: Burke Publishing, 1939. Print.
  9. Hanks, Patricia and Flavia Hodges. A Dictionary of Surnames. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988. Print. (ISBN 0-19-211592-8).
  10. Elster, Robert J. International Who's Who. London: Europa/Routledge. Print.
  11. ...

The Mills Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Mills 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 13 October 2014 at 11:11.

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