Cowel History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
- Origins Available:
The story of the Cowel family begins in ancient Scotland among the Pictish clans. The Cowel family lived in Coull, a parish, in the district of Kincardine O'Neil, county of Aberdeen. "This place is supposed to have taken its name, which signifies a "corner," from its situation in the south-eastern extremity of the district of Cromar." 
Early Origins of the Cowel family
The surname Cowel was first found in Aberdeenshire (Gaelic: Siorrachd Obar Dheathain), where one of the first records of the family was "William de Cull [who] was one of the witnesses to a charter by John, Earl of Huntington to Norman filius Malcolm of the lands of Lesslyn etc., between 1219-1237." 
Coull Castle was an 13th-century castle to the south of Coull. Only traces of the castle can be found today.
Some of the first records of the family in Scotland include: John Cowl who possessed a tenement in Glasgow in 1458, and Sir John Cowill, a cleric, was witness in Aberdeen, 1567. Patrick Coule at Newburgh is mentioned in the Lindores Chartulary in 1479. David Cowle, a native of Scotland, had letters of naturalization in England in 1481, and in the same year Alexander Coule was admitted burgess of Aberdeen." 
Further south in northern England, the Lay Subsidy Rolls of 1332 listed John de Couhill, of Rishton, Lancashire; and John de Coule, of Blackburn, Lancashire, 1332. 
"The Cowells of Lancashire probably take their name from Cowhill, a district and seat in Lancashire." 
Early History of the Cowel family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Cowel research. Another 173 words (12 lines of text) covering the years 1219, 1567, 1479, 1481, 1567, 1554, 1611, 1554 and 1570 are included under the topic Early Cowel History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Cowel Spelling Variations
Translation has done much to alter the appearance of many Scottish names. It was a haphazard process that lacked a basic system of rules. Spelling variations were a common result of this process. Cowel has appeared Coull, Coul, Cowill, Cowell, Cull, Cowles, Cowl, Cowle and many more.
Early Notables of the Cowel family (pre 1700)
Another 27 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Cowel Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Cowel family
Many Scots left their country to travel to the North American colonies in search of the freedom they could not find at home. Of those who survived the difficult voyage, many found the freedom they so desired. There they could choose their own beliefs and allegiances. Some became United Empire Loyalists and others fought in the American War of Independence. The Clan societies and highland games that have sprung up in the last century have allowed many of these disparate Scots to recover their collective national identity. A search of immigration and passenger ship lists revealed many early settlers bearing the Cowel name: John Coule who settled in Virginia in 1654; Francis Coull arrived in Philadelphia in 1856; Martin and Sam Cowl arrived in San Francisco in 1850; Ira Cowles arrived in New York in 1820 with his apprentice.
The motto was originally a war cry or slogan. Mottoes first began to be shown with arms in the 14th and 15th centuries, but were not in general use until the 17th century. Thus the oldest coats of arms generally do not include a motto. Mottoes seldom form part of the grant of arms: Under most heraldic authorities, a motto is an optional component of the coat of arms, and can be added to or changed at will; many families have chosen not to display a motto.
Motto: Cole Deum
Motto Translation: Worship God.
- Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of Scotland. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
- Black, George F., The Surnames of Scotland Their Origin, Meaning and History. New York: New York Public Library, 1946. Print. (ISBN 0-87104-172-3)
- Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
- Guppy, Henry Brougham, Homes of Family Names in Great Britain. 1890. Print.