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

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

The ancestors of the Skinner family brought their name to England in the wave of migration after the Norman Conquest of 1066. The name Skinner is for a skinner. Looking back even further, we found the name was originally derived from the Old Norse word skinn, meaning hide, and indicates that the original bearer was employed in the trade of removing animal hides.

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Spelling variations in names were a common occurrence in the eras before English spelling was standardized a few hundred years ago. In the Middle Ages, even the literate regularly changed the spellings of their names as the English language incorporated elements of French, Latin, and other European languages. Many variations of the name Skinner have been found, including Skinner, Skynner, Skiner and others.

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


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Skinner research. Another 427 words(30 lines of text) covering the years 1070, 1700, 1721, 1807, 1746, 1788, 1744, 1816, 1623, 1667, 1596, 1587, 1596, 1629 and 1679 are included under the topic Early Skinner History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Another 67 words(5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Skinner Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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For many English families, the social climate in England was oppressive and lacked opportunity for change. For such families, the shores of Ireland, Australia, and the New World beckoned. They left their homeland at great expense in ships that were overcrowded and full of disease. Many arrived after the long voyage sick, starving, and without a penny. But even those were greeted with greater opportunity than they could have experienced back home. Numerous English settlers who arrived in the United States and Canada at this time went on to make important contributions to the developing cultures of those countries. Many of those families went on to make significant contributions to the rapidly developing colonies in which they settled. Early North American records indicate many people bearing the name Skinner were among those contributors:

Skinner Settlers in the United States in the 17th Century


  • Thomas Skinner who settled in Virginia in 1606
  • John Skinner settled in Virginia in 1621
  • Nicholas Skinner, who landed in Virginia in 1623
  • Edward Skinner settled in Cambridge, Massachusetts in 1630
  • Anth Skinner, who landed in Virginia in 1635


Skinner Settlers in the United States in the 18th Century


  • Jona Skinner, who landed in Virginia in 1701
  • Lewis Skinner, who arrived in Virginia in 1703
  • Jos Skinner, who arrived in Virginia in 1711
  • Saml Skinner, who arrived in Virginia in 1711
  • William Skinner, who landed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1718


Skinner Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century


  • William S Skinner, who landed in America in 1804
  • John Skinner, who landed in America in 1807
  • Alexander Skinner, who arrived in New York in 1811
  • Helen Skinner, aged 18, arrived in New York, NY in 1834
  • Margaret Skinner, aged 8, landed in New York, NY in 1834


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  • Burrhus Fredric "B.F." Skinner (1904-1990), celebrated American psychologist, probably best known for the Skinner's box, awarded the National Medal of Science in 1969
  • Cornelia Otis Skinner (1901-1979), American actress and author
  • Constance Lindsay Skinner (1879-1939), Canadian-born American author and historian
  • Frank Skinner (1897-1968), American composer and arranger
  • Carlton S. Skinner (1913-2004), first civilian governor of Guam (1949-1953)
  • Samuel Knox Skinner (b. 1938), White House Chief of Staff under President George H. W. Bush
  • James Scott Skinner (1843-1927), Scottish fiddler and composer, known as the "Strathspey King"
  • Dennis Skinner (b. 1932), British Labour Party politician
  • Company Sergeant Major John Kendrick Skinner VC, DCM (1883-1918), Scottish recipient of the Victoria Cross
  • Quentin Robert Duthie Skinner (b. 1940), British professor of the Humanities and winner of the 2006 Balzan Prize among many others he has won

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  • Descendants of Richard Alexander Skinner of Lousoun County, Virginia by Lester Granville Holcombe.
  • The Tishomingo County Connection by Esther Welch Adams.
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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: Sanguis et vulnera
Motto Translation: Blood and wounds.

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  1. Hanks, Hodges, Mills and Room. The Oxford Names Companion. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2002. Print. (ISBN 0-19-860561-7).
  2. Hanks, Patricia and Flavia Hodges. A Dictionary of Surnames. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988. Print. (ISBN 0-19-211592-8).
  3. Innes, Thomas and Learney. The Tartans of the Clans and Families of Scotland 1st Edition. Edinburgh: W & A. K. Johnston Limited, 1938. Print.
  4. Virkus, Frederick A. Ed. Immigrant Ancestors A List of 2,500 Immigrants to America Before 1750. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1964. Print.
  5. Bolton, Charles Knowles. Bolton's American Armory. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1964. Print.
  6. Burke, Sir Bernard. General Armory Of England, Scotland, Ireland and Wales. Ramsbury: Heraldry Today. Print.
  7. Elster, Robert J. International Who's Who. London: Europa/Routledge. Print.
  8. MacAulay, Thomas Babington. History of England from the Accession of James the Second 4 volumes. New York: Harper and Brothers, 1879. Print.
  9. 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.
  10. Magnusson, Magnus. Chambers Biographical Dictionary 5th edition. Edinburgh: W & R Chambers, 1990. Print.
  11. ...

The Skinner Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Skinner 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 24 July 2014 at 10:30.

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