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

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

In the ancient Scottish-English border region, the ancestors of the name law lived among the Boernicians. They lived near a hill. law is a local name, which belongs to the category of hereditary surnames. There are many different categories of local surnames, some of which include: topographic surnames, which could be given to a person who lived beside any physical feature, such as a hill, stream, church or type of tree. Habitation names form the other broad category of surnames that were derived from place-names. They were derived from pre-existing names for towns, villages, parishes, or farmsteads. Other local names are derived from the names of houses, manors, estates, regions, and entire counties. law is a topographic name, and it comes from the Old English word, hlaw, which means hill.

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Spelling rules only evolved in the last few centuries with the invention of the printing press and the first dictionaries. Spelling variations are extremely common in names from before that period. law has been spelled Law, Lawe, Lawes and others.

First found in Northumberland, where they were lords of the manor and seated from very ancient times.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our law research. Another 261 words(19 lines of text) covering the years 1671, 1729, 1686, 1761, 10 w, 1595, 1662, 1602 and 1645 are included under the topic Early law History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Another 151 words(11 lines of text) are included under the topic Early law Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Some of the law family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 127 words(9 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.

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After making their great crossing, many Boernician-Scottish families settled along the east coast of North America. When the War of Independence broke out, United Empire Loyalists moved north to Canada while the rest stayed to fight. The ancestors of many of these Scots still populate the continent. This century, through Clan societies and other Scottish organizations, they began to rediscover their collective national heritage. Analysis of immigration records indicates that some of the first North American immigrants bore the name law or a variant listed above:

law Settlers in the United States in the 17th Century


  • Mary Law who settled in Virginia in 1643
  • Andrew Law, who arrived in Hingham, Massachusetts in 1654
  • John Law, who arrived in New England in 1661
  • Abra Law, who arrived in Virginia in 1662
  • Alexander Law, who landed in Maryland in 1663


law Settlers in the United States in the 18th Century


  • John Law settled in Annapolis Maryland in 1719
  • Anna Law, who arrived in Boston, Massachusetts in 1756
  • George Law settled in Charles Town [Charleston], South Carolina in 1763
  • Mungo Law, who arrived in Mobile, Ala in 1764
  • Andrew Law settled in Maryland in 1774


law Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century


  • William Law, who landed in New York, NY in 1811
  • Wm Law, who arrived in New York, NY in 1811
  • Robert Law, who arrived in New York, NY in 1812
  • Margaret Law, who arrived in New York, NY in 1817
  • Mary Law, who landed in New York, NY in 1817


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  • Specialist Four Robert David Law (1944-1969), United States Army soldier and recipient of the Medal of Honor
  • John Phillip Law (1937-2008), American film actor, known for his role in the science fiction cult classic Barbarella (1968)
  • Acie Law IV (b. 1985), American professional basketball player
  • Bernard Francis Law (b. 1931), American cardinal of the Roman Catholic Church, Archbishop emeritus of Boston
  • Evander McIver Law (1836-1920), American author, teacher, and Confederate general in the American Civil War
  • Denis Law CBE (b. 1940), Scottish retired football striker
  • David Jude Heyworth Law (b. 1972), English Academy Award nominated actor
  • Prime Minister Andrew Bonar Law (1858-1923), Canadian-born, British Conservative Party statesman and Prime Minister from 1922 to 1923
  • Sir Alfred Joseph Law (1860-1939), British Conservative Party politician, Member of Parliament for Rochdale (1918-1922), Member of Parliament for High Peak (19291939)
  • Brian John Law (b. 1970), Welsh former professional footballer from Merthyr Tydfil

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  • The Law Family of Wanlockhead, Scotland, and Northfield, Minnesota by Margaret D. Leslie Lindner.
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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: Compositum jus fasque animi
Motto Translation: A mind which respects alike the laws of mutual justice and of God.

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  1. 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).
  2. Passenger Lists of Vessels Arriving at Galveston Texas 1896-1951. National Archives Washington DC. Print.
  3. Moncrieffe, Sir Ian of That Ilk and Don Pottinger. Clan Map Scotland of Old. Edinburgh: Bartholomew and Son, 1983. Print.
  4. Dorward, David. Scottish Surnames. Glasgow: Harper Collins, 1995. Print.
  5. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  6. Fairbairn,. Fairbain's book of Crests of the Families of Great Britain and Ireland, 4th Edition 2 volumes in one. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1968. Print.
  7. Bloxham, Ben. Key to Parochial Registers of Scotland From Earliest Times Through 1854 2nd edition. Provo, UT: Stevenson's Genealogical Center, 1979. Print.
  8. Bowman, George Ernest. The Mayflower Reader A Selection of Articales from The Mayflower Descendent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  9. Moncrieffe, Sir Ian of That Ilk and David Hicks. The Highland Clans The Dynastic Origins, Cheifs and Background of the Clans. New York: C.N. Potter, 1968. Print.
  10. Martine, Roddy, Roderick Martine and Don Pottinger. Scottish Clan and Family Names Their Arms, Origins and Tartans. Edinburgh: Mainstream, 1992. Print.
  11. ...

The law Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The law 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 2 May 2014 at 20:57.

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