Show ContentsDelisle History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The history of the Delisle family goes back to the Medieval landscape of southern France, to a region known as Languedoc. It is derived from the family living in the parish of l'Isle, in Languedoc. The name Delisle translates as of l'Isle, or of the island.

Early Origins of the Delisle family

The surname Delisle was first found in Languedoc, where this family was established in early times.

Another more probable derivation of De Lisle is "from the Castle of Lisle, Normandy. Burcharde Insula witnessed a charter in Normandy c. 1066." [1]

A great many of the family emigrated to England where "Robert, his son, granted lands to Cerisy Abbey, temp. William I. His descendants were chiefly seated in the North of England. Ralph, John, and Robert de Insula occur in Yorkshire, Otui or Otwer de Insula in Northumberland, 1165: from whom descended Sir John de Lisle of Woodburn in that county, whose descendants long continued there." [2]

There is, however, a far earlier mention of the family in this country. "In the Wiltshire Domesday, one Humphrey de Lisle is recorded as holding of the King a fief of not less than twenty-seven manors. Of this Humphrey, I can say no more than that in January 1091 he was in attendance at Hastings on King William II., then about to embark for Normandy. He appears to have left a daughter and sole heiress, variously called Adelina de Insula and Adeliza de Dunstanville, for it was the custom of great heiresses to retain their paternal name after marriage." [1]

"The De Lisles were considerable landowners in [Northumberland], and are often to be met with in its records. In 1272, Robert de Lisle was Lord of Chipchase, held in 1307 by Peter de Lisle, with Whitwell, as part of a knight's fee of ancient feoffment. From them it passed to the Herons. John de Lisle was Sheriff in 1326; and Sir Robert de Lisle in 1409 and 1421, in addition to being three several times knight of the shire. This Sir Robert was seated at Felton, having married Mary, daughter and co-heir of Adomar of Felton, uncle to David Strabolgie, Earl of Athole." [1]

In Scotland, the family certainly existed for over three hundred years. About 1243, Radulphus de Insula dominus de Duchal, a barony in Renfrewshire, witnesses several grants to Paisley Abbey. From him descended John de Lisle, to whom and to his wife Margaret de Vaux, David II. granted the lands of Buchquhan (Buchanan) in Stirlingshire; and Sir Robert Lyll or Lyle, "a Baron of an ample fortune," created Lord Lyle by James II. in 1445. His son Robert was Justiciar of Scotland under James IV., and the grandfather of James, Master of Lyle, the last of the family, who, in 1556, died without succession in his father's lifetime. His brother-in-law. Sir Neil Montgomerie, inherited the castle and barony of Duchal.

Early History of the Delisle family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Delisle research. Another 167 words (12 lines of text) covering the years 1572, 1589, 1644, 1671, 1675, 1688, 1696, 1738, 1756, 1813, 1816, and 1882 are included under the topic Early Delisle History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Delisle Spelling Variations

Throughout the course of history most surnames have undergone changes for many reasons. During the early development of the French language, a son and father may not have chosen to spell their name the same way. Many are simple spelling changes by a person who gave his name, phonetically, to a scribe, priest, or recorder. Many names held prefixes or suffixes which became optional as they passed through the centuries, or were adopted by different branches to signify either a political or religious adherence. Hence, we have many spelling variations of this name, Delisle some of which are Delisle, Delile, Delille, de l'Isle, d'Isle and many more.

Early Notables of the Delisle family (pre 1700)

Notable amongst the family name at this time was Guillaume Delisle (1675-1726), a French cartographer known for his popular and accurate maps of Europe and the newly explored Americas and Africa; Joseph-Nicolas Delisle (1688-1768), a French...
Another 36 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Delisle Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Delisle World Ranking

In the United States, the name Delisle is the 5,130th most popular surname with an estimated 4,974 people with that name. [3] However, in Canada, the name Delisle is ranked the 569th most popular surname with an estimated 8,700 people with that name. [4] And in Quebec, Canada, the name Delisle is the 250th popular surname. [5] France ranks Delisle as 2,591st with 2,500 - 3,000 people. [6]

United States Delisle migration to the United States +

In 1643, 109 years after the first landings by Cartier, there were only about 300 people in Quebec, in 1663 there were only 500, 2,000 migrants arrived during the next decade. Early marriage was desperately encouraged amongst the immigrants. Youths of 18 took fourteen-year-old girls for their wives. The fur trade was developed and attracted migrants, both noble and commoner from France. 15,000 explorers left Montreal in the late 17th and 18th centuries. Migration from France to New France or Quebec as it was now more popularly called, continued from France until it fell in 1759. By 1675, there were 7000 French in Quebec. By the same year the Acadian presence in Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island had reached 500. In 1755, 10,000 French Acadians refused to take an oath of allegiance to England and were deported to Louisiana. Meanwhile, in Quebec, the French race flourished, founding in Lower Canada, one of the two great solitudes which became Canada. Many distinguished contributions have been made by members of this family name Delisle. It has been prominent in the arts, religion, politics and culture in France and New France. Amongst the settlers in North America with this distinguished name Delisle were

Delisle Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • François Delisle, who settled in Louisiana in 1756
  • J. Delisle, who arrived in New York in 1775
Delisle Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Francois H Delisle, aged 40, who arrived in Texas in 1827 [7]
  • A L DeLisle, aged 40, who landed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1838 [7]
  • John Delisle, aged 28, who landed in Missouri in 1839 [7]

Canada Delisle migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Delisle Settlers in Canada in the 17th Century
  • Louis Delisle, son of Charles and Marguerite, who married Louise Des Granges, daughter of Denis and Marguerite, in Quebec on 15th October 1669 [8]
  • Antoine Delisle, son of Louis and Louise, who married Marie-Catherine Faucher, daughter of Léonard and Marie, in Pointe-aux-Trembles, Quebec on 9th November 1694 [8]
  • Jacques Delisle, son of Jacques and Renée, who married Barbe Perrin, daughter of Henri and Jeanne, in Lachine, Quebec on 31st December 1696 [8]
  • Jean-Baptiste Delisle, son of Louis and Louise, who married Scholastique Mezeray, daughter of Jean and Madeleine, in Pointe-aux-Trembles, Quebec on 4th May 1699 [8]
Delisle Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century
  • François Delisle, son of Louis and Louise, who married Thérèse Faucher, daughter of Léonard and Marie, in Pointe-aux-Trembles, Quebec on 5th November 1708 [8]
  • Guillaume Delisle, son of Jean and Marguerite, who married Jeanne Verret, daughter of Michel and Marie, in Montreal, Quebec on 19th October 1710 [8]
  • Louis-Joseph Delisle, son of Antoine and Marie-Catherine, who married Madeleine Toupin, daughter of Jean-Baptiste and Madeleine, in Pointe-aux-Trembles, Quebec on 28th February 1724 [8]
  • Philippe Delisle, son of Jacques and Barbe, who married Marie-Anne Le Normand, daughter of Charles-Jean and Monique, in Montreal, Quebec on 26th November 1727 [8]
  • Louis-Joseph Delisle, son of Jean-Baptiste and Marie-Anne, who married Marie-Anne Jugnac, daughter of Jacques and Marie-Anne, in Cap-Santé, Quebec on 24th January 1735 [8]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Contemporary Notables of the name Delisle (post 1700) +

  • James Roger "Jim" DeLisle (b. 1949), retired American football defensive tackle who played for the Green Bay Packers in 1971
  • Louis Nelson "Big Eye" Delisle (1885-1949), American Dixieland jazz clarinetist in New Orleans, Louisiana
  • Grey DeLisle (b. 1973), born Erin Grey Van Oosbree, an American actress, comedian, and recording artist
  • Peter Bienvenu DeLisle (1846-1908), American Democratic Party politician, Supervisor of Springwells Township, Michigan; Elected 1901; Member of Michigan State House of Representatives from Wayne County 4th District, 1903-04 [9]
  • Eugene Delisle Sr., American politician, Delegate to New Hampshire State Constitutional Convention from Manchester 8th Ward, 1956 [9]
  • Charles A. DeLisle, American Democratic Party politician, Member of Michigan Democratic State Central Committee, 1937; Candidate for Presidential Elector for Michigan, 1940, 1948 [9]
  • Henry Delisle (1938-2022), French academic and politician, Inspector General of Agriculture, President of the Institut national de formation des personnels du ministère de l'Agriculture
  • Jean-Marie Noël Delisle de Falcon, vicomte de Saint-Geniès, French Divisional General during the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars from 1789 to 1815 [10]
  • Raymond Delisle (1943-2013), French professional road bicycle racer
  • Charles Marie Leconte de Lisle (1818-1894), French poet
  • ... (Another 13 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

  1. Cleveland, Dutchess of The Battle Abbey Roll with some Account of the Norman Lineages. London: John Murray, Abermarle Street, 1889. Print. Volume 3 of 3
  2. The Norman People and Their Existing Descendants in the British Dominions and the United States Of America. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0636-X)
  3. "What are the 5,000 Most Common Last Names in the U.S.?".,
  4. "Surnames Meanings, Origins & Distribution Maps - Forebears." Forebears,
  5. "The first 1,000 family names by rank, Quebec (in French only)" Institut de la statistique du Quebec,
  7. 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)
  8. Internoscia, Arthur E., and Claire Chevrier. Dictionnaire National des Canadiens Français 1608-1760. Vol. 1, Institut Drouin, 1958.
  9. The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, October 22) . Retrieved from
  10. Generals Who Served in the French Army during the Period 1789-1815. (Retrieved 2015, February 26) Jean-Marie Delisle. Retrieved from on Facebook