Show ContentsAckerley History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The name Ackerley has a long Anglo-Saxon heritage. The name comes from when a family lived in Buckinghamshire. The surname Ackerley derives from the Old English word Aker-leah, which means "acre meadow owner." [1]

Early Origins of the Ackerley family

The surname Ackerley was first found in Buckinghamshire, where they held a family seat from ancient times. The name literally mane "dweller at the Acre-Lea, i.e., a common field divided into plots of various sizes. [Middle English aker, Old English aecer, a division of land +M.E. ley, Old English leah, a lea, field]." [2]

Early History of the Ackerley family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Ackerley research. Another 245 words (18 lines of text) covering the years 1086, 1273, 1300, 1500, 1610, 1665, 1685, 1691, 1721, 1725, 1740 and 1769 are included under the topic Early Ackerley History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ackerley Spelling Variations

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 Ackerley have been found, including Ackerly, Ackerley, Acerly, Akerley, Akeley, Acle, Ackle, Acley, Acly and many more.

Early Notables of the Ackerley family

Distinguished members of the family include Roger Acherley (1665?-1740), Welsh lawyer, constitutional writer, and politician, the son and heir of John Acherley of Stanwardine, or Stottesden, Shropshire, where he was the representative of a long-established family. Roger was admitted a student of the Inner Temple on 6 March 1685, and called to the bar on 24 May 1691. For some years Acherley was engaged in disputing the will of Thomas Vernon, who died in 1721, by...
Another 76 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Ackerley Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

United States Ackerley migration to the United States +

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 Ackerley, or a variant listed above:

Ackerley Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Capt. Ackerley, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1851 [3]

Australia Ackerley migration to Australia +

Emigration to Australia followed the First Fleets of convicts, tradespeople and early settlers. Early immigrants include:

Ackerley Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Lawrence Ackerley, English convict from Lancaster, who was transported aboard the "Argyle" on March 5th, 1831, settling in Van Diemen's Land, Australia [4]
  • Mr. Samuel Ackerley who was convicted in Chester, Cheshire, England for life, transported aboard the "Elizabeth" on 3rd October 1831, arriving in Tasmania (Van Diemen's Land) [5]

New Zealand Ackerley migration to New Zealand +

Emigration to New Zealand followed in the footsteps of the European explorers, such as Captain Cook (1769-70): first came sealers, whalers, missionaries, and traders. By 1838, the British New Zealand Company had begun buying land from the Maori tribes, and selling it to settlers, and, after the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840, many British families set out on the arduous six month journey from Britain to Aotearoa to start a new life. Early immigrants include:

Ackerley Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Miss Alice Ackerley, (b. 1842), aged 32, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "Sussex" arriving in Port Chalmers, Dunedin, Otago, South Island, New Zealand on 17th July 1874 [6]

Contemporary Notables of the name Ackerley (post 1700) +

  • J. Christopher Ackerley, American politician, Member of the Arizona House of Representatives (2015-2017)
  • Barry Allan Ackerley (1934-2011), American businessman and former chairman and CEO of the Ackerley Group media company
  • Joseph Randolf "J.R." Ackerley (1896-1967), English writer and editor who started with the BBC the year after its founding in 1927 and was promoted to literary editor of The Listener, its weekly magazine, where he served for more than two decades, eponym of the PEN Ackerley Prize
  • The Venerable Frederick George Ackerley (1871-1954), English eminent Anglican priest in the Church of England who was Archdeacon of Bradford then Craven
  • Stan Ackerley (b. 1942), English-born, Australian former footballer and coach from Manchester, Lancashire
  • Michelle Ackerley (b. 1984), English television presenter and journalist, best known for her work on BBC programmes such as Watchdog and The One Show
  • Lisa Ackerley MCIEH, CEnvH, FRSPH,, English Chartered Environmental Health Practitioner
  • George Ackerley (1887-1958), English footballer from West Derby, Liverpool who played from 1908 to 1909
  • Alvin Ackerley (1927-1973), English rugby league footballer from Dearham, Cumberland who played for Great Britain, England and Cumberland
  • Paul Douglas Ackerley (1949-2011), New Zealand Olympic gold medalist field hockey player, maths teacher and public servant
  • ... (Another 1 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

  1. Surnames from the U.S.A. and Canada. Family Name Researchers, Inc., Toronto, 1975.
  2. Harrison, Henry, Surnames of the United Kingdom: A Concise Etymological Dictionary Baltimore: Geneological Publishing Company, 2013. Print
  3. Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
  4. State Library of Queensland. (Retrieved 2015, January 8) Argyle voyage to Van Diemen's Land, Australia in 1831 with 251 passengers. Retrieved from
  5. Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 9th March 2022). Retrieved from
  6. New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 26th March 2019). Retrieved from on Facebook