Show ContentsCottrill History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Cottrill is a name whose history on English soil dates back to the wave of migration that followed the Norman Conquest of England in 1066. The name Cottrill comes from a serf or bond tenant who held a cottage by service. The name is derived from the Old English cote, which means "shelter," or "cottage."

"In feudal times, 'the coterellus held in absolute villenage and had his person and goods disposed at the pleasure of the Lord.' Kennet's Paroch. Antiq. He was probably so called, like the Cotmanni, or Cottarii of Domesd. from residing in a cottage. Another origin may be from the cotarelli, costeraux, cotemux, mercenary soldiers and freebooters whose trade was war and pillage, (Conf. Brabazon) and who were so called from the coterel, a large knife they carried. Cotgrave defines cotereaux as 'a certaine crue of peasantly outlawes who in old time did much mischiefe unto the nobilitie and clergie.' " [1]

Early Origins of the Cottrill family

The surname Cottrill was first found in Somerset where Stephan Coterel and Walter Coterel were both listed 1 Edward III (during the first year of the reign of King Edward III.) [2]

The Pipe Rolls listed William Coterel in 1130 in London and Gerard Coterel in Berkshire in 1170. Later the Assize Rolls on 1288 listed Honde Cotrell. [3]

The Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 listed Richard Coterell, Devon; Alice Coterel, Cambridgeshire; and Henry Coterel, Bedfordshire. [4]

In Devon, John Coterell was Warden of St Mary's College, Ottery St Mary in 1379.

Early History of the Cottrill family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Cottrill research. Another 84 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1691, 1572, 1631, 1621, 1624, 1624, 1615, 1701, 1641, 1654, 1710, 1686, 1758 and 1847 are included under the topic Early Cottrill History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Cottrill Spelling Variations

Norman surnames are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations. The frequent changes in surnames are largely due to the fact that the Old and Middle English languages lacked definite spelling rules. The introduction of Norman French to England, as well as the official court languages of Latin and French, also had pronounced influences on the spelling of surnames. Since medieval scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded, rather than adhering to any specific spelling rules, it was common to find the same individual referred to with different spellings. The name has been spelled Cotterell, Cotterel, Cotteral, Cotteril, Cotterill, Cottral, Cottrall, Cottrell, Cottrel, Coterall, Coterel, Coteril, Coterill, Cotrall, Cotrell, Cottrle, Cotral, Cotraul, Cotrelly and many more.

Early Notables of the Cottrill family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was John Cotterell DCL (died 1572), from Wiltshire, an English clergyman and academic at the University of Oxford, one of the founding fellows of Jesus College, Oxford; Sir Clement Cotterell (died 1631), an English courtier and politician, Member of Parliament for Grantham (1621-1624) and for Boston in...
Another 53 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Cottrill Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Cottrill Ranking

In the United States, the name Cottrill is the 9,990th most popular surname with an estimated 2,487 people with that name. [5]

Ireland Migration of the Cottrill family to Ireland

Some of the Cottrill 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 and printed products wherever possible.

United States Cottrill migration to the United States +

Many English families emigrated to North American colonies in order to escape the political chaos in Britain at this time. Unfortunately, many English families made the trip to the New World under extremely harsh conditions. Overcrowding on the ships caused the majority of the immigrants to arrive diseased, famished, and destitute from the long journey across the stormy Atlantic. Despite these hardships, many of the families prospered and went on to make invaluable contributions to the development of the cultures of the United States and Canada. Early North American immigration records have revealed a number of people bearing the name Cottrill or a variant listed above:

Cottrill Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Thomas Cottrill, who landed in St Clair County, III in 1874 [6]
Cottrill Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • Francis J. Cottrill, aged 20, who landed in America from Leicester, in 1903
  • Harry Cottrill, aged 36, who immigrated to America from Bristol, England, in 1911
  • Minnie Cottrill, aged 36, who immigrated to the United States from Bristol, England, in 1911
  • Alfred Cottrill, aged 21, who landed in America from Barnes, England, in 1911
  • Beatrice May Cottrill, aged 15, who immigrated to the United States from Bristol, England, in 1911
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Canada Cottrill migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Cottrill Settlers in Canada in the 20th Century
  • Lorne Cottrill, aged 26, who immigrated to Hamilton, Canada, in 1915

Contemporary Notables of the name Cottrill (post 1700) +

  • William Cottrill, American thoroughbred breeder and trainer, co-owner of Buchanan who was the winner of the 1884 Kentucky Derby, Ripple Stakes and Clark Stakes
  • Jedd Philo Clark Cottrill (1832-1889), American politician, Member of the Wisconsin State Senate (1883-1885)
  • E. E. Cottrill, American Democratic Party politician, Member of West Virginia State House of Delegates from Gilmer County; Elected 1934 [7]
  • Charles E. Cottrill, American Democratic Party politician, Candidate for West Virginia State House of Delegates from Doddridge County, 1936 [7]
  • Charles A. Cottrill, American Republican politician, Alternate Delegate to Republican National Convention from Ohio, 1916 [7]
  • Matthew Cottrill, Canadian curler, member of the Fanshawe Falcons at the CCAA Curling National Championships (2012)
  • John Cottrill, Australian tennis player at the 1966 Australian Championships-Men's Singles
  • Commissioner Walter Stanley Cottrill (1914-2005), South African 15th Chief of the Staff of The Salvation Army
  • William "Joe" Cottrill (1889-1972), British bronze medalist athlete at the 1912 Summer Olympics
  • Deborah Cottrill (b. 1963), British former competitive figure skater

  1. Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  2. Dickinson, F.H., Kirby's Quest for Somerset of 16th of Edward the 3rd London: Harrison and Sons, Printers in Ordinary to Her Majesty, St, Martin's Lane, 1889. Print.
  3. Hanks, Patricia and Flavia Hodges, A Dictionary of Surnames. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988. Print. (ISBN 0-19-211592-8)
  4. Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  5. "What are the 5,000 Most Common Last Names in the U.S.?".,
  6. 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)
  7. The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, November 16) . Retrieved from on Facebook