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

Origins Available: English, French

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

Asselin is one of the thousands of new names that the Norman Conquest brought to England in 1066. The Asselin family lived in Huntingdon. The name is also derived from the ancient baptismal name Ansell. That name is derived from the Germanic elements ans, meaning god, and helm, meaning protection or helmet. It derived some popularity from the fact that it was borne by a number of famous medieval churchmen. Notably, St. Anselm (c.1033-1109), the Benedictine monk was known as "the father of Scholasticism."

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It is only in the last few hundred years that the English language has been standardized. For that reason, Anglo-Norman surnames like Asselin are characterized by many spelling variations. Scribes and monks in the Middle Ages spelled names they sounded, so it is common to find several variations that refer to a single person. As the English language changed and incorporated elements of other European languages such as Norman French and Latin, even literate people regularly changed the spelling of their names. The variations of the name Asselin include Aslin, Aslen, Aslan, Asslin, Aslein, Ascelin, Asselin, Asselyn, Astlen, Aslyn, Asling and many more.

First found in Nottinghamshire, where they held a family seat from ancient times.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Asselin research. Another 301 words(22 lines of text) covering the years 1066, 1086, 1273, 1399, 1551, 1557, 1725, 1782 and 1390 are included under the topic Early Asselin History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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

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Faced with the chaos present in England at that time, many English families looked towards the open frontiers of the New World with its opportunities to escape oppression and starvation. People migrated to North America, as well as Australia and Ireland in droves, paying exorbitant rates for passages in cramped, unsafe ships. Many of the settlers did not make the long passage alive, but those who did see the shores of North America were welcomed with great opportunity. Many of the families that came from England went on to make essential contributions to the emerging nations of Canada and the United States. Some of the first immigrants to cross the Atlantic and come to North America carried the name Asselin, or a variant listed above:

Asselin Settlers in the United States in the 20th Century


  • Louis Asselin, aged 35, who emigrated to the United States from Bordeaux, France, in 1920
  • Louise Asselin, aged 42, who settled in America from Rennes, France, in 1921

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  • Joseph Asselin, Canadian journalist
  • Pierre Asselin, former Diplomat, principal secretary to the Prime Minister of Canada
  • Martial Asselin PC OC QC (b. 1924), retired Canadian politician, 25th Lieutenant Governor of Quebec (1990 to 1996)
  • Gérard Asselin (b. 1950), retired Canadian Bloc Québécois politician
  • Joseph Patrick Tobin Asselin (1930-2005), Canadian politician
  • Olivar Asselin (1874-1937), Canadian writer and journalist in Quebec
  • Roland Asselin (1917-2003), Canadian fencer at the 1948, 1952 and 1956 Summer Olympics
  • Pierre-Aurèle Asselin (1881-1964), French Canadian furrier and tenor singer
  • Edmund Tobin Asselin (1920-1999), Canadian politician, administrator and businessman
  • Kevin Asselin (b. 1985), Canadian professional ice hockey player

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  1. Bullock, L.G. Historical Map of England and Wales. Edinburgh: Bartholomew and Son, 1971. Print.
  2. Matthews, John. Matthews' American Armoury and Blue Book. London: John Matthews, 1911. Print.
  3. Holt, J.C. Ed. Domesday Studies. Woodbridge: Boydell, 1987. Print. (ISBN 0-85115-477-8).
  4. Le Patourel, John. The Norman Empire. New York: Oxford University Press, 1976. Print. (ISBN 0-19-822525-3).
  5. 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).
  6. Bradford, William. History of Plymouth Plantation 1620-1647 Edited by Samuel Eliot Morrison 2 Volumes. New York: Russell and Russell, 1968. Print.
  7. Crispin, M. Jackson and Leonce Mary. Falaise Roll Recording Prominent Companions of William Duke of Normandy at the Conquest of England. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  8. Skordas, Guest. Ed. The Early Settlers of Maryland an Index to Names or Immigrants Complied from Records of Land Patents 1633-1680 in the Hall of Records Annapolis, Maryland. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1968. Print.
  9. MacAulay, Thomas Babington. History of England from the Accession of James the Second 4 volumes. New York: Harper and Brothers, 1879. Print.
  10. Lennard, Reginald. Rural England 1086-1135 A Study of Social and Agrarian Conditions. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1959. Print.
  11. ...

The Asselin Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Asselin 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 4 June 2012 at 16:33.

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