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

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

The ancient history of the Mosley name begins with the ancient Anglo-Saxon tribes of Britain. The name is derived from when the family resided in one of the places called Moseley in Staffordshire and Worcestershire(both in the West Midlands region) , in Moseley in West Dean in Gloucestershire, or in Mowsley in Leicestershire. There is also a Mossley in Greater Manchester.

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Until quite recently, the English language has lacked a definite system of spelling rules. Consequently, Anglo-Saxon surnames are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations. Changes in Anglo-Saxon names were influenced by the evolution of the English language, as it incorporated elements of French, Latin, and other languages. Although Medieval scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded, so it is common to find one person referred to by several different spellings of his surname, even the most literate people varied the spelling of their own names. Variations of the name Mosley include Moseley, Mosely, Mosley, Mossley and others.

First found in Moseley, now a suburb of Birmingham in the West Midlands or in Moseley in Herefordshire and Worcestershire or in Mowsley, a small village in Lancashire. All four locations are listed in the Domesday Book. [1] The West Midlands village was originally called Moleshi and literally meant "woodland clearing of a man called Moll," from the Old English personal name + leah. The latter three locations were listed as Museleie and in these cases, the place names literally meant "woodland clearing infested with mice." [2] Mossely, a small town and civil parish in Greater Manchester was first listed as Moselegh in 1319 and literally meant "woodland clearing by a swamp or bog." [2]


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Mosley research. Another 223 words(16 lines of text) covering the years 1200, 1527, 1612, 1599, 1609, 1610, 1661, 1647, 1639, 1665, 1660 and 1661 are included under the topic Early Mosley History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Another 105 words(8 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Mosley Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Searching for a better life, many English families migrated to British colonies. Unfortunately, the majority of them traveled under extremely harsh conditions: overcrowding on the ships caused the majority of the immigrants to arrive diseased, famished, and destitute from the long journey across the ocean. For those families that arrived safely, modest prosperity was attainable, and many went on to make invaluable contributions to the development of the cultures of the new colonies. Research into the origins of individual families in North America revealed records of the immigration of a number of people bearing the name Mosley or a variant listed above:

Mosley Settlers in the United States in the 17th Century


  • Joseph and Robert Mosley settled in Virginia in 1623
  • Joseph Mosley, who landed in Virginia in 1623
  • Robt Mosley, who landed in Virginia in 1652
  • James Mosley, who arrived in Maryland in 1669
  • Thomas Mosley, who arrived in Maryland in 1673


Mosley Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century


  • A Mosley, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1855

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  • Edward Mosley, frontier trader in the United States in the 1850s
  • Lacey Mosley (b. 1981), American vocalist for the band Flyleaf
  • Shane Mosley (b. 1971), American boxing champion
  • Walter Mosley (b. 1952), American crime fiction writer
  • Sir Oswald Ernald Mosley (1896-1980), English politician


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  • Epitome of the History of the Moseley Family by R.L. Moseley.
  • Mosley Families of Montgomery and Emanuel Counties by John E. Mosley.
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  1. ^ Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
  2. ^ Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)

Other References

  1. Robb H. Amanda and Andrew Chesler. Encyclopedia of American Family Names. New York: Haper Collins, 1995. Print. (ISBN 0-06-270075-8).
  2. Magnusson, Magnus. Chambers Biographical Dictionary 5th edition. Edinburgh: W & R Chambers, 1990. Print.
  3. Papworth, J.W and A.W Morant. Ordinary of British Armorials. London: T.Richards, 1874. Print.
  4. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  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. Cook, Chris. English Historical Facts 1603-1688. London: MacMillan, 1980. Print.
  7. Burke, Sir Bernard. Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Peerage and Baronetage, The Privy Council, Knightage and Compainonage. London: Burke Publishing, 1921. Print.
  8. Bowman, George Ernest. The Mayflower Reader A Selection of Articales from The Mayflower Descendent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  9. Le Patourel, John. The Norman Empire. New York: Oxford University Press, 1976. Print. (ISBN 0-19-822525-3).
  10. 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).
  11. ...

The Mosley Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Mosley 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 21 June 2013 at 13:49.

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