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

Origins Available: English, French

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

The name Mayhew was brought to England by the Normans when they conquered the country in 1066. The ancestors of the Mayhew family lived in Norfolk. Their name, however, derives from the family's place of residence prior to the Norman Conquest of England in 1066, Mayeux, Normandy.


It is only in the last few hundred years that the English language has been standardized. For that reason, Anglo-Norman surnames like Mayhew 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 Mayhew include Mayhew, Mahewe, Mahugh, Mayhugh, Mayhuys, Mayhue and others.

First found in Norfolk 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 Mayhew research. Another 207 words(15 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Mayhew History in all our PDF Extended History products.


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


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 Mayhew, or a variant listed above:

Mayhew Settlers in the United States in the 17th Century

  • Thomas Mayhew, the Elder (1593-1682), born in Tilsbury, Wiltshire who arrived in Massachusetts with his wife Anna in 1631, founder of Martha's Vineyard in 1642
  • Ann Mayhew, who landed in New England in 1640
  • Zachariah Mayhew, who landed in Maryland in 1673

Mayhew Settlers in the United States in the 18th Century

  • John Mayhew, who settled in Rappahannock in 1727

Mayhew Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century

  • Robert Mayhew, aged 35, landed in New York in 1803
  • John S Mayhew, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1850

Mayhew Settlers in the United States in the 20th Century

  • Bertha Mayhew, aged 7, who landed in America from London, in 1906
  • Ellen Mayhew, aged 17, who emigrated to the United States from Annalong, Ireland, in 1906
  • Fey Mayhew, aged 6, who emigrated to America, in 1907
  • Ann Mayhew, aged 50, who emigrated to the United States from London, England, in 1908
  • Dorothy Mayhew, aged 3, who settled in America from Walthamshon, England, in 1911


  • Peter Mayhew (b. 1944), English-born, American actor and comedian, best known for playing Chewbacca in the Star Wars films largely due to his 7 foot 3 inches height
  • David R. Mayhew (b. 1937), American Sterling Professor in the Political Science Department at Yale University
  • David Mayhew (b. 1982), American professional stock car racing driver, five-time winner in the International Kart Federation National Championships
  • Martin R. Mayhew (b. 1965), American former football player, current General Manager of the Detroit Lions
  • Henry Mayhew (1812-1887), English journalist, one of the two founders of the satirical and humorous magazine "Punch"
  • James John Mayhew (b. 1964), English illustrator and author of children's books
  • Christopher Paget Mayhew (1915-1997), Baron Mayhew, British politician
  • Mike Mayhew (b. 1980), New Zealand Stuckist artist and painter
  • Lauren Courtney Mayhew (b. 1985), American singer and actress
  • Robert Wellington Mayhew (1880-1971), Canadian politician and diplomat



  • Genealogical History of Nathaniel Mayhew by Ralph Danforth Shipp.
  • Mayhew Mixtures by Elizabeth Smith Craghead.

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: Sola in Deo salus
Motto Translation: Safety in God alone.


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  1. Matthews, John. Matthews' American Armoury and Blue Book. London: John Matthews, 1911. Print.
  2. Thirsk, Joan. The Agrarian History of England and Wales. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press: 7 Volumes. Print.
  3. Magnusson, Magnus. Chambers Biographical Dictionary 5th edition. Edinburgh: W & R Chambers, 1990. Print.
  4. 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.
  5. 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.
  6. Bolton, Charles Knowles. Bolton's American Armory. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1964. Print.
  7. 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.
  8. Marcharn, Frederick George. A Constitutional History of Modern England 1485 to the Present. London: Harper and Brothers, 1960. Print.
  9. 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).
  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 Mayhew Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Mayhew 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 18 September 2014 at 08:06.

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