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The Ellis family name is linked to the ancient Anglo-Saxon culture of Britain. Their name comes from the baptismal name for the son of Ellis. which "has for the most part been formed from the scripture name Elias, which does not occur as an Anglo-Saxon name, but which was in use in France as early as the days of Charlemagne, as a baptismal designation, and after wards gave to several families." [1]CITATION[CLOSE]
Lowe, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.


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The surname Ellis was first found in Yorkshire where the first record of the name was "William Alis, mentioned in the Domesday Book as the progenitor of the Ellises of Kiddal, county York, and Stoneacre, county Kent, from whom sprang Sir Archibald Ellys, a crusader who is said to have originated the cross and crescents so common to the Ellis coat-armour." [1]CITATION[CLOSE]
Lowe, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
Continuing the search through early records, we found Willelmus filius Helis listed in the Curia Regis Rolls of Somerset in 1212, William Elyas in the Pipe Rolls of Yorkshire in 1200, William Elis in the Pipe Rolls of Lancashire in 1202 and Andrew Elice in the Subsidy Rolls of Bedfordshire in 1309. [2]CITATION[CLOSE]
Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
The Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 had numerous entries including: Henry filius Elis in Cambridgeshire; Agnes uxor Elys in Cambridgeshire; Simon filius Elys in Bedfordshire; Nicholas filius Elye in Cambridgeshire and Roger filius Elye in Shropshire. [3]CITATION[CLOSE]
Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)

Until the dictionary, an invention of only the last few hundred years, the English language lacked any comprehensive system of spelling rules. Consequently, spelling variations in names are frequently found in early Anglo-Saxon and later Anglo-Norman documents. One person's name was often spelled several different ways over a lifetime. The recorded variations of Ellis include Ellis, Elliss, Ellys, Elis, Eliss, Elliason and many more.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Ellis research. Another 127 words (9 lines of text) covering the years 1460, 1474, 1693, 1598, 1665, 1676, 1609, 1680, 1654, 1640, 1653, 1625, 1673, 1634, 1716, 1703, 1651, 1734, 1650 and 1731 are included under the topic Early Ellis History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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Distinguished members of the family include Sir Henry Elys of Yorkshire; Thomas Ellis, mayor of Norwich from 1460 to 1474; Sir Francis Ellis, an administrator of the English East India Company, and President of Bengal in 1693; John Ellis (1598-1665), a Welsh Anglican clergyman and religious writer, born at Gwylan, Maentwrog...

Another 80 words (6 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Ellis Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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Some of the Ellis family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 331 words (24 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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Thousands of English families boarded ships sailing to the New World in the hope of escaping the unrest found in England at this time. Although the search for opportunity and freedom from persecution abroad took the lives of many because of the cramped conditions and unsanitary nature of the vessels, the opportunity perceived in the growing colonies of North America beckoned. Many of the settlers who survived the journey went on to make important contributions to the transplanted cultures of their adopted countries. The Ellis were among these contributors, for they have been located in early North American records:

Ellis Settlers in United States in the 17th Century

  • David Ellis, who arrived in Jamestown, Va in 1607
  • David Ellis who settled in Virginia in 1608
  • John Ellis, who landed in America in 1620
  • Margrett Ellis, who arrived in Virginia in 1624-1625
  • Arthur Ellis, who arrived in Massachusetts in 1630
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Ellis Settlers in United States in the 18th Century

  • Rowland Ellis, who landed in New Jersey in 1711
  • Francis Ellis, who arrived in Virginia in 1714
  • Everard Ellis, who landed in Pennsylvania in 1729
  • Evered Ellis, who landed in Pennsylvania in 1739
  • Margaret Ellis, who arrived in Maryland in 1740
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Ellis Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • Hugh Ellis, who arrived in America in 1804
  • Alexander Ellis, aged 36, landed in New York, NY in 1804
  • Alex Ellis, who arrived in America in 1804
  • Margaret Ellis, who landed in America in 1804
  • Richard Ellis, who arrived in America in 1810
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Ellis Settlers in United States in the 20th Century

  • Morris Ellis, who landed in Mississippi in 1902
  • Michael Ellis, who arrived in Mississippi in 1903
  • Harry George Ellis, who arrived in Alabama in 1921

Ellis Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century

  • Jacob Ellis, who landed in Nova Scotia in 1749
  • Thomas Ellis, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1749
  • Jacob Ellis, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1750
  • Edward Ellis, who landed in Nova Scotia in 1760
  • Edward Ellis, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1761
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Ellis Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century

  • Richard, Ellis Jr., who landed in Canada in 1815
  • Richard, Ellis Sr., who arrived in Canada in 1815
  • Edward Ellis, who landed in Canada in 1815
  • James Ellis, aged 12, arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick in 1834 aboard the brig "Betsy Heron" from Belfast, Ireland
  • John Ellis, aged 50, a farmer, arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick in 1834 aboard the ship "Britannia" from Sligo, Ireland
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Ellis Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century

  • Walter Ellis, English convict from Middlesex, who was transported aboard the "Agamemnon" on April 22, 1820, settling in New South Wales, Australia
  • James Ellis, English convict from Surrey, who was transported aboard the "Asia" on April 1st, 1822, settling in New South Wales, Austraila
  • Caroline Ellis, English convict from Middlesex, who was transported aboard the "Amphitrite" on August 21, 1833, settling in New South Wales, Australia
  • Joseph Ellis, English convict from Suffolk, who was transported aboard the "Arab" on February 22, 1834, settling in Van Diemen's Land, Austraila
  • George Ellis arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Rajasthan" in 1838
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Ellis Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century

  • W Ellis landed in Auckland, New Zealand in 1836
  • Thomas Ellis landed in Akaroa, New Zealand in 1840
  • Thomas Ellis landed in Wellington, New Zealand in 1841
  • George Ellis, aged 30, a farm labourer, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Catherine Stewart Forbes" in 1841
  • Mary Ann Ellis, aged 28, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Catherine Stewart Forbes" in 1841
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  • Samuel Ellis, American namesake and the last private owner (in the 1770s) of Ellis Island, in New York harbor
  • Samuel Joseph "Sammy" Ellis (1941-2016), American Major League Baseball pitcher who played from 1962 to 1968
  • Allan Ellis (1951-2013), American former NFL cornerback for the Chicago Bears and the San Diego Chargers
  • David Richard Ellis (1952-2013), American film director and stuntman
  • Herb Ellis (1921-2010), American jazz guitarist
  • Bret Easton Ellis (b. 1964), American author
  • Joseph Ellis (b. 1943), Pulitzer Prize winning author and a professor at Mt. Holyoke
  • Sergeant Michael B. Ellis (1894-1937), United States Army soldier awarded the Medal of Honor
  • Billy Ellis (1895-1939), English footballer
  • Sir William Charles Ellis (1780-1839), English physician, pioneering superintendent of asylums and Methodist lay preacher
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Ellis Historic Events



Halifax Explosion

  • Master J. Robert  Ellis (1909-1917), Canadian resident from Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada who died in the Halifax Explosion on 6th December 1917
  • Mr. Robert  Ellis (1874-1917), Canadian resident from Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada who died in the Halifax Explosion on 6th December 1917
  • Mrs. Annie  Ellis (1875-1917), Canadian resident from Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada who died in the Halifax Explosion on 6th December 1917

HMS Prince of Wales

  • Mr. James Ellis, British Boy 1st Class, who sailed in to battle on the HMS Prince of Wales and died during the sinking
  • Mr. Harold Ellis, British Stoker, who sailed in to battle on the HMS Prince of Wales and survived the sinking
  • Mr. Cyril Ellis, British Leading Seaman, who sailed in to battle on the HMS Prince of Wales and survived the sinking
  • Mr. Alfred Louis Ellis, British Able Seaman, who sailed in to battle on the HMS Prince of Wales and survived the sinking
  • Mr. Albert Ellis (1919-1942), Scottish Leading Seaman from Scotland, who sailed in to battle on the HMS Prince of Wales and survived the sinking, was later captured by Japanese in Sumatra in 1942

HMS Repulse

  • Mr. Richard Ellis, British Stoker 1st Class, who sailed into battle on the HMS Repulse and survived the sinking

RMS Lusitania

  • Mr. Herbert Ellis, English 2nd Class passenger from England, who sailed aboard the RMS Lusitania and died in the sinking and was recovered
  • Mr. John Ellis, Canadian 2nd Class passenger from Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, who sailed aboard the RMS Lusitania and survived the sinking
  • Miss Hilda Ellis, Canadian 2nd Class passenger from St. Thomas, Ontario, Canada, who sailed aboard the RMS Lusitania and died in the sinking

RMS Titanic

  • Mr. John Bertram Ellis, aged 30, English Assistant Vegetable Cook from Southampton, Hampshire who worked aboard the RMS Titanic and survived the sinking by escaping in life boat 2
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  • Descendants of Charles Jones of New Brunswick from 1776 and Ellis Descendants from 1739 by Geneva Jones Emberley.
  • The Ellis Line from Surry-Sussex in Virginia by Dixie L. MaCrary.
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Citations



  1. ^ Lowe, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  2. ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  3. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)

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. The Norman People and Their Existing Descendants in the British Dominions and the United States Of America. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0636-X).
  3. Burke, Sir Bernard. General Armory Of England, Scotland, Ireland and Wales. Ramsbury: Heraldry Today. Print.
  4. Reaney P.H and R.M. Wilson. A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X).
  5. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  6. Hinde, Thomas Ed. The Domesday Book England's Heritage Then and Now. Surrey: Colour Library Books, 1995. Print. (ISBN 1-85833-440-3).
  7. Passenger Lists of Vessels Arriving at Galveston Texas 1896-1951. National Archives Washington DC. Print.
  8. Samuelsen, W. David. New York City Passenger List Manifests Index 1820 - 1824. North Salt Lake, Utah: Accelerated Indexing Systems International, 1986. Print.
  9. Burke, Sir Bernard. Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Peerage and Baronetage, The Privy Council, Knightage and Compainonage. London: Burke Publishing, 1921. Print.
  10. 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.
  11. ...

The Ellis Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Ellis 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 20 July 2016 at 13:35.

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