Show ContentsDowell History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Early Origins of the Dowell family

The surname Dowell was first found in Inverness, where they held a family seat in this wild and romantic highland territory. Their territories were first located in Badenoch and they became associated as a sept of Donald Clan. Allegiances were important in this terrain.

Early History of the Dowell family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Dowell research. Another 85 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1606 and 1609 are included under the topic Early Dowell History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Dowell Spelling Variations

Spelling variations of this family name include: Doull, Doul, Dowill, Dowl, Dowell, Duill, Doule and many more.

Early Notables of the Dowell family (pre 1700)

More information is included under the topic Early Dowell Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Dowell Ranking

In the United States, the name Dowell is the 2,386th most popular surname with an estimated 12,435 people with that name. [1]

United States Dowell migration to the United States +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Dowell Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • William Dowell, who landed in Virginia in 1714 [2]
  • John Dowell, who arrived in North Carolina in 1753 [2]
  • William Dowell, who arrived in Mobile, Ala in 1787 [2]
Dowell Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Samuel Dowell, who arrived in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1812 [2]
  • Alexander Dowell, who landed in New York, NY in 1815 [2]
  • R Dowell, who landed in San Francisco, California in 1850 [2]
  • Richard Dowell, who landed in San Francisco, California in 1872 [2]

Canada Dowell migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Dowell Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • Miss. Mary Dowell, aged 14 who was emigrating through Grosse Isle Quarantine Station, Quebec aboard the ship "Lady Flora Hastings" departing 11th May 1847 from Cork, Ireland; the ship arrived on 26th June 1847 but she died on board [3]

Australia Dowell migration to Australia +

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

Dowell Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • John Dowell, a slater, who arrived in Van Diemen’s Land (now Tasmania) sometime between 1825 and 1832
  • Miss Mary Ann Dowell, English Convict who was convicted in London, England for 7 years, transported aboard the "Atwick" on 28 September 1837, arriving in Tasmania (Van Diemen's Land) [4]

New Zealand Dowell 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:

Dowell Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • George W. Dowell, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Owen Glendowner" in 1864

Contemporary Notables of the name Dowell (post 1700) +

  • Frances O'Roark Dowell (b. 1964), German-born, American author of middle-grade fiction, including Dovey Coe (2000), The Secret Language of Girls, Shooting the Moon, and Falling In, recipient of the William Allen White Children's Book Award, the Christopher Award, the VOYA Book Award, and the Boston Globe-Horn Book Award for Excellence in Children's Fiction
  • Joe Dowell (1940-2016), American pop singer, best known for his rendition of the song Wooden Heart
  • Horace Kirby "Saxie" Dowell (1904-1974), American jazz and pop music bandleader
  • Jacob Dowell (b. 1985), American NHL professional ice hockey center
  • Cassius Clay Dowell (1864-1940), American Republican Representative from Iowa
  • Leonard Dowell (b. 1902), Scottish professional association football player
  • Alastair McQueen Dowell (1920-2010), Scottish cricketer
  • Admiral Sir William Montagu Dowell GCB (1825-1912), Royal Navy officer, Commander-in-Chief, Plymouth
  • Sir Anthony James Dowell CBE (b. 1943), English ballet dancer and Artistic Director of Britain's Royal Ballet from 1986 to 2001
  • George Dare Dowell (1831-1910), English soldier, who received the Victoria Cross for heroic deeds in 1855

Halifax Explosion
  • Mr. George Harris  Dowell (1861-1917), Canadian resident from Elmsdale Hants County, Nova Scotia, Canada who died in the Halifax Explosion (1917) [5]

  1. "What are the 5,000 Most Common Last Names in the U.S.?".,
  2. 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)
  3. Charbonneau, André, and Doris Drolet-Dubé. A Register of Deceased Persons at Sea and on Grosse Île in 1847. The Minister of Canadian Heritage, 1997. ISBN: 0-660-198/1-1997E (p. 73)
  4. Convict Records of Australia. Retreived 23rd August 2020 from
  5. Halifax Explosion Book of Remembrance | Maritime Museum of the Atlantic. (Retrieved 2014, June 23) . Retrieved from on Facebook