Fennell History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The ancestors of the name Fennell date back to the days of the Anglo-Saxon tribes of Britain. The name is derived from their residence near a place where vennel grew. Vennel was an herb used for cooking. Other sources list the name as a local name derived from the term at the vennel.

Early Origins of the Fennell family

The surname Fennell was first found in Norfolk where they held a family seat from very ancient times, some say well before the Norman Conquest and the arrival of Duke William at Hastings in 1066 A.D.

Early History of the Fennell family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Fennell research. Another 78 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1150, 1292, 1296, and 1661 are included under the topic Early Fennell History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Fennell Spelling Variations

Fennell has been spelled many different ways. Before English spelling became standardized over the last few hundred years, spelling variations in names were a common occurrence. As the English language changed in the Middle Ages, absorbing pieces of Latin and French, as well as other languages, the spelling of people's names also changed considerably, even over a single lifetime. Many variations of the name Fennell have been found, including Fennell, Vennell, Venall, Fenel and others.

Early Notables of the Fennell family (pre 1700)

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

Ireland Migration of the Fennell family to Ireland

Some of the Fennell family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 43 words (3 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Fennell migration to the United States +

In an attempt to escape the chaos experienced in England, many English families boarded overcrowded and diseased ships sailing for the shores of North America and other British colonies. Those families hardy enough, and lucky enough, to make the passage intact were rewarded with land and a social environment less prone to religious and political persecution. Many of these families became important contributors to the young colonies in which they settled. Early immigration and passenger lists have documented some of the first Fennells to arrive on North American shores:

Fennell Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Robert Fennell, who settled in Virginia in 1623
  • Robert Fennell, who arrived in Virginia in 1623 [1]
  • Thomas Fennell, who arrived in Maryland in 1650 [1]
  • John Fennell, who landed in Virginia in 1650 [1]
  • Martha Fennell, who arrived in Virginia in 1664 [1]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Fennell Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Richard Fennell, who landed in Virginia in 1705 [1]
  • Daniel Fennell, who arrived in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1773 [1]
Fennell Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Richard Fennell, who arrived in Mobile, Ala in 1860 [1]
  • Edward, Michael, Patrick and William Fennell all, who arrived in Philadelphia between 1840 and 1865

Canada Fennell migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Fennell Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century
  • Mr. John Fennell U.E. who settled in Canada c. 1786 [2]
Fennell Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • Thomas Fennell, who landed in Nova Scotia in 1814
  • Mr. Thomas Fennell, aged 4 who immigrated to Canada, arriving at the Grosse Isle Quarantine Station in Quebec aboard the ship "Saguenay" departing from the port of Cork, Ireland but died on Grosse Isle in August 1847 [3]

Australia Fennell migration to Australia +

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

Fennell Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • James Fennell, English convict from London, who was transported aboard the "Albion" on May 17, 1823, settling in Van Diemen's Land, Australia [4]
  • Stephen Fennell, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Duke of Roxburghe" in 1838 [5]
  • Margaret Fennell, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Duke of Roxburghe" in 1838 [5]
  • Patrick Fennell, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Duke of Roxburghe" in 1838 [5]
  • Dennis Fennell, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Duke of Roxburghe" in 1838 [5]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

New Zealand Fennell 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:

Fennell Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Mr. George Fennell, (b. 1838), aged 28, British labourer travelling from Gravesend, UK aboard the ship "Bombay" arriving in Lyttelton, South Island, New Zealand on 18th August 1866 [6]
  • Mrs. Sarah Fennell, (b. 1834), aged 32, British settler travelling from Gravesend, UK aboard the ship "Bombay" arriving in Lyttelton, South Island, New Zealand on 18th August 1866 [6]
  • Mr. Alfred Fennell (Pennell), (b. 1826), aged 40, British labourer travelling from Gravesend, UK aboard the ship "Bombay" arriving in Lyttelton, South Island, New Zealand on 18th August 1866 [6]
  • Michael Fennell, who arrived in Nelson, New Zealand aboard the ship "Algernon" in 1868
  • Charles Fennell, aged 42, a farm labourer, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Douglas" in 1873
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Contemporary Notables of the name Fennell (post 1700) +

  • Thomas Francis Fennell II (1904-1991), American football player and boxer at Cornell University, inducted into the Cornell Athletic Hall of Fame in 1989
  • Thomas Francis Fennell (1875-1936), American college football player and coach, head football coach at the University of Cincinnati in 1897
  • William George Fennell, American Republican politician, Candidate for New York State Senate 20th District, 1940 [7]
  • Thomas F. Fennell, American Republican politician, Candidate for New York State Treasurer, 1910; Candidate for U.S. Representative from New York 37th District, 1912; Judge of New York Court of Claims, 1915 [7]
  • Robert F. Fennell, American Democrat politician, Elected Massachusetts State House of Representatives Tenth Essex District 2002 [7]
  • John Grenville Fennell (1807-1885), English artist, naturalist, and angler, born at sea between Ireland and England in 1807 [8]
  • Jack "Jackie" Fennell (1933-2019), English professional rugby league footballer from Pontefract, West Riding of Yorkshire who played in the 1950s and 1960s
  • Jan Fennell, English dog dog trainer and author of the books The Dog Listener and The Practical Dog Listener
  • William "Willie" Fennell (1920-1992), also known as "Phooey" Fennell, an Australian radio, television, stage and film actor and comedian
  • Thomas Scott Fennell (1928-1979), Canadian politician, Member of the Canadian Parliament for Ontario electoral district (1979-1988)
  • ... (Another 14 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)


  1. ^ 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)
  2. ^ Rubincam, Milton. The Old United Empire Loyalists List. Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc, 1976. (Originally published as; United Empire Loyalists. The Centennial of the Settlement of Upper Canada. Rose Publishing Company, 1885.) ISBN 0-8063-0331-X
  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. 28)
  4. ^ State Library of Queensland. (Retrieved 2016, October 27) Albion voyage to Van Diemen's Land, Australia in 1823 with 200 passengers. Retrieved from http://www.convictrecords.com.au/ships/albion/1823
  5. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) The DUKE OF ROXBURGE. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1838DukeOfRoxburghe.htm
  6. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 17th October 2018). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html
  7. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, October 26) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html
  8. ^ Wikisource contributors. "Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900." Wikisource . Wikisource , 4 Jun. 2018. Web. 30 June 2020


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