Crossley History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Crossley is a name of ancient Anglo-Saxon origin and comes from the family once having lived at a region known as the cross or for the dweller at the cross. [1]

Early Origins of the Crossley family

The surname Crossley was first found in Lancashire where "the name of an ancient gentle family of Todmorden during the 14th and loth centuries and of Scaitcliffe since the reign of Elizabeth." [2] Another source confirms Scaitcliffe as the point of origin, but adds "anciently Del Croslegh, are of unknown antiquity." [3]

We must look to nearby Yorkshire to find the first records of the family though. It is there that the Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls of 1379 listed Johannes de Crosselay; and Willelmus de Crosselay as holding lands there at that time.

"The same record (p. 189) registers the following inhabitants of Stansfield (Halifax), where the surname is now so strong—Isabella Groslee, Elena Crossle, Thomas Grosseleys, Johannes Grosles. The change of initial from 'C' to 'G' and vice versa is common; compare Crandidge for Grandage, also a Yorkshire instance." [4]

Early History of the Crossley family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Crossley research. Another 144 words (10 lines of text) covering the years 1200, 1365, 1670 and 1744 are included under the topic Early Crossley History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Crossley Spelling Variations

Sound was what guided spelling in the essentially pre-literate Middle Ages, so one person's name was often recorded under several variations during a single lifetime. Also, before the advent of the printing press and the first dictionaries, the English language was not standardized. Therefore, spelling variations were common, even among the names of the most literate people. Known variations of the Crossley family name include Crossley, Crossleigh, Crosslie, Crossly, Croseleigh, Croseley, Crosslay, Crosslow, Crosselie, Crosseley and many more.

Early Notables of the Crossley family (pre 1700)

Distinguished members of the family include David Crosly (1670-1744), English Baptist minister, born in the neighbourhood of Todmorden, Lancashire. He was brought up by a pious aunt, and in his youth worked as...
Another 33 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Crossley Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Crossley migration to the United States +

For political, religious, and economic reasons, thousands of English families boarded ships for Ireland, Canada, the America colonies, and many of smaller tropical colonies in the hope of finding better lives abroad. Although the passage on the cramped, dank ships caused many to arrive in the New World diseased and starving, those families that survived the trip often went on to make valuable contributions to those new societies to which they arrived. Early immigrants bearing the Crossley surname or a spelling variation of the name include:

Crossley Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Mary Crossley, who arrived in Maryland in 1673 [5]
Crossley Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Ann, Martha, Mary, Susannah, Crossley who, who settled in Charles Town [Charleston], South Carolina in 1765
Crossley Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • David Crossley, aged 26, who arrived in America in 1822 [5]
  • William Crossley, who settled in New York in 1823
  • Joseph Crossley, aged 34, who landed in Kennebunk, Me in 1830 [5]
  • William Crossley, who landed in New York in 1843 [5]
  • Enoch, Frank, George, Henry, John, Robert, Stansfield, Thomas, Walter, and William Crossley, all, who settled in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania between 1847 and 1872
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Australia Crossley migration to Australia +

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

Crossley Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Mr. John Crossley, British Convict who was convicted in Lancaster, England for 7 years, transported aboard the "Asia" on 5th November 1835, arriving in Tasmania ( Van Diemen's Land)1836 [6]

New Zealand Crossley 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:

Crossley Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Samuel Crossley, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Phoenix" in 1860
  • F. Crossley, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "City of Auckland" in 1871
  • William Crossley, aged 19, a labourer, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Queen of Nations" in 1874
  • Elizabeth Crossley, aged 26, a cook, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Queen of Nations" in 1874
  • John Crossley, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Wairoa" in 1881
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Contemporary Notables of the name Crossley (post 1700) +

  • Wallace Crossley (1874-1943), American politician, 29th Lieutenant Governor of Missouri and publisher of The Daily Star-Journal
  • Shanna Annette Crossley (b. 1983), American professional basketball player
  • James Crossley (1800-1883), English author, born at Halifax on 31 March 1800, son of James Crossley [7]
  • Kelsey-Beth Crossley (b. 1992), English actress, best known for her role as Scarlett Nicholls, on the ITV soap opera Emmerdale
  • James Crossley (b. 1973), English bodybuilder and actor, best known for his role as Hunter in the television series Gladiators from 1993-2000
  • Geoffrey Crossley (1921-2002), English racing driver
  • Francis Crossley (1839-1897), who with his brother William J. (1844-1911) founded Crossley Motors and Crossley, an English pioneer in the production of internal combustion engines and since 1988, part of the Rolls-Royce Power Engineering group
  • Herbert Crossley (1901-1921), English heavyweight boxer
  • Edward Crossley (1841-1905), English businessman, Liberal Party politician and astronomer, eponym of the Crossley telescope, California
  • Syd Crossley (1885-1960), English film actor who appeared in 114 films
  • ... (Another 13 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

RMS Lusitania
  • Mrs. Sylvia Ellen Crossley, Canadian 2nd Class passenger from Toronto, Ontario, Canada, who sailed aboard the RMS Lusitania and survived the sinking [8]
  • Mr. Cyrus Crossley, Canadian 2nd Class passenger from Toronto, Ontario, Canada, who sailed aboard the RMS Lusitania and survived the sinking [8]


The Crossley Motto +

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: Credo et amo
Motto Translation: I believe and love.


  1. ^ Smith, Eldson Coles, New Dictionary of American Family Names New York, Harper & Row, 1956. Print
  2. ^ Guppy, Henry Brougham, Homes of Family Names in Great Britain. 1890. Print.
  3. ^ Lowe, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  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. ^ 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)
  6. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 28th January 2020). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/asia/1835
  7. ^ Wikisource contributors. "Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900." Wikisource . Wikisource , 4 Jun. 2018. Web. 30 June 2020
  8. ^ Lusitania Passenger List - The Lusitania Resource. (Retrieved 2014, March 7) . Retrieved from http://www.rmslusitania.info/lusitania-passenger-list/


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