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

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

The ancestry of the name Winchester dates from the ancient Anglo-Saxon culture of Britain. It comes from when the family lived in the city of Winchester in Hampshire. Further research revealed that the name is derived from the Old English word ventaceaster, meaning the dweller at the Roman fort.


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

First found in Hampshire where it is conjecturally believed that a Saxon Lord displaced in Hampshire moved north to Scotland and acquired lands in the county of Ayrshire and Lanarkshire.


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Winchester research. Another 159 words(11 lines of text) covering the years 1296, 1495 and 1826 are included under the topic Early Winchester History in all our PDF Extended History products.


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


Some of the Winchester family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. More information about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.


Families began migrating abroad in enormous numbers because of the political and religious discontent in England. Often faced with persecution and starvation in England, the possibilities of the New World attracted many English people. Although the ocean trips took many lives, those who did get to North America were instrumental in building the necessary groundwork for what would become for new powerful nations. Some of the first immigrants to cross the Atlantic and come to North America bore the name Winchester, or a variant listed above:

Winchester Settlers in the United States in the 17th Century

  • Jo Winchester, aged 19, arrived in New England in 1635
  • John Winchester, who landed in Boston, Massachusetts in 1635
  • Alexander Winchester, who arrived in Braintree, Massachusetts in 1636
  • John Winchester settled in Virginia in 1636
  • Richard Winchester, who arrived in New England in 1638

Winchester Settlers in the United States in the 18th Century

  • Arthur Winchester, who landed in Virginia in 1719
  • William Winchester arrived in Maryland in 1732
  • William Winchester Sr. aged 79, arrived in Maryland in 1790

Winchester Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century

  • Samuel Winchester arrived in Baltimore Maryland in 1822


  • Oliver Winchester (1810-1880), American founder of the Winchester Repeating Arms Company
  • Scott Joseph Winchester (b. 1973), American former Major League Baseball player
  • James Ridout "Jesse" Winchester (1944-2014), American musician and songwriter
  • Caleb Thomas Winchester (1847-1920), American professor of English literature at Wesleyan University, Middletown, Connecticut
  • Simon Winchester OBE (b. 1944), British-American author and journalist
  • Ian Winchester (b. 1973), New Zealand Olympic discus thrower


  • John Winchester 161-1694, A Settler of New England, and One Line of his Descendants by George Rogers Presson.

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  1. Humble, Richard. The Fall of Saxon England. New York: Barnes and Noble, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-88029-987-8).
  2. Robb H. Amanda and Andrew Chesler. Encyclopedia of American Family Names. New York: Haper Collins, 1995. Print. (ISBN 0-06-270075-8).
  3. 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.
  4. Innes, Thomas and Learney. The Tartans of the Clans and Families of Scotland 1st Edition. Edinburgh: W & A. K. Johnston Limited, 1938. Print.
  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. Bullock, L.G. Historical Map of England and Wales. Edinburgh: Bartholomew and Son, 1971. Print.
  7. Library of Congress. American and English Genealogies in the Library of Congress. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1967. Print.
  8. Zieber, Eugene. Heraldry in America. Philadelphia: Genealogical Publishing Co. Print.
  9. Bardsley, C.W. A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6).
  10. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  11. ...

The Winchester Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Winchester 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 15 July 2014 at 15:33.

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