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

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

The name Wisdom is derived from the Old English word "wisdom" which means "wisdom, learning." Some of the first records of the name reveal Durand Wisdom who was listed in a census in 1198 and Gilbert Wysdom who was listed in another census in 1243.

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Spelling variations of this family name include: Wisdom, Wisedom, Wisbom, Wistow and others.

First found in Devon where they held a family seat from very ancient times at Cornwood in that shire, before and after the Norman Conquest in 1066. Reginald of Cornwood was tenant of these lands from the Norman noble, Count of Mortain, and included three unbroken mares, ten cattle, and twenty two goats.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Wisdom research. Another 236 words(17 lines of text) covering the year 1295 is included under the topic Early Wisdom History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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

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Some of the Wisdom family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 120 words(9 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Wisdom Settlers in the United States in the 17th Century


  • Henry Wisdom, who arrived in Maryland in 1673
  • John Wisdom, who arrived in Pennsylvania in 1682
  • Thomas Wisdom settled in Barbados in 1682
  • John Wisdom settled in Pennsylvania in 1682

Wisdom Settlers in the United States in the 18th Century


  • Stephen Wisdom, who landed in New England in 1733
  • Catherine Wisdom settled in Pennsylvania in 1772
  • Solomon H Wisdom, who arrived in Mississippi in 1799

Wisdom Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century


  • William Wisdom, aged 29, arrived in Mobile County, Ala in 1845

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  • Robert Wisdom (b. 1953), American actor
  • Sir Norman Wisdom (1915-2010), English comedian, singer and actor
  • Arthur John Terence Dibben Wisdom (b. 1904), English philosopher
  • Jack Wisdom, Professor of Planetary Sciences at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • John Minor Wisdom (1905-1999), American Republican politician from Louisiana, judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit and recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom
  • Olli Wisdom, British music artist


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  1. Hitching, F.K and S. Hitching. References to English Surnames in 1601-1602. Walton On Thames: 1910. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0181-3).
  2. 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).
  3. Bowman, George Ernest. The Mayflower Reader A Selection of Articales from The Mayflower Descendent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  4. Mills, A.D. Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4).
  5. Bradford, William. History of Plymouth Plantation 1620-1647 Edited by Samuel Eliot Morrison 2 Volumes. New York: Russell and Russell, 1968. Print.
  6. Shirley, Evelyn Philip. Noble and Gentle Men of England Or Notes Touching The Arms and Descendants of the Ancient Knightley and Gentle Houses of England Arranged in their Respective Counties 3rd Edition. Westminster: John Bowyer Nichols and Sons, 1866. Print.
  7. Browning, Charles H. Americans of Royal Descent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  8. Hanks, Patricia and Flavia Hodges. A Dictionary of Surnames. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988. Print. (ISBN 0-19-211592-8).
  9. Reaney P.H and R.M. Wilson. A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X).
  10. Passenger Lists of Vessels Arriving at Galveston Texas 1896-1951. National Archives Washington DC. Print.
  11. ...

The Wisdom Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Wisdom 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 January 2014 at 05:44.

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