An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright © 2000 - 2016
The name Burwell is of Anglo-Saxon origin and came from when the family lived in Burwell, a place-name found in a number of English counties including Northampton, Cambridgeshire, and Lincolnshire. Thus, an original bearer of the surname Burwell hailed from any of the above places. The place-name Burwell is derived from the Old English byrig-wiellw which means town well or fort by a spring.
It is only in the last few hundred years that the English language has been standardized. For that reason, early Anglo-Saxon surnames like Burwell are characterized by many spelling variations. As the English language changed and incorporated elements of other European languages, even literate people changed the spelling of their names. Scribes and monks in the Middle Ages spelled names they sounded, so it is common to find several variations that refer to a single person. The variations of the name Burwell include: Burwell, Burwelle and others.
First found in Cambridgeshire at Burwell, a village and civil parish located there since 1060 when records there have the village name as Burcwell. Remains of a 12th century fort's dry moat can still be seen there today. The Domesday Book  of 1086 lists the spellings Burewelle, Burwella and Burwelle. At that time it was part of the Stapole hundred, held by the Abbot of Ramsey. The same reference lists Buruelle which has been modernized as Burwell in Lincolnshire.  Burwell Castle was an unfinished medieval motte and bailey castle in Burwell, Cambridgeshire. It was built in 1143 by Stephen I of England, on the site of a former Roman villa. Thomas Lethbridge excavated the site in 1935 and since 1983 the site is held by the Burwell Parish Council.
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Burwell research. Another 191 words (14 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Burwell History in all our PDF Extended History products.
More information is included under the topic Early Burwell Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.
Many English families tired of political and religious strife left Britain for the new colonies in North America. Although the trip itself offered no relief - conditions on the ships were extremely cramped, and many travelers arrived diseased, starving, and destitute - these immigrants believed the opportunities that awaited them were worth the risks. Once in the colonies, many of the families did indeed prosper and, in turn, made significant contributions to the culture and economies of the growing colonies. An inquiry into the early roots of North American families has revealed a number of immigrants bearing the name Burwell or a variant listed above:
Burwell Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
Burwell Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
Burwell Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
Burwell Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century
The Burwell Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Burwell 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 30 October 2015 at 10:44.