Folke History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Folke is a name that first reached England following the Norman Conquest of 1066. It comes from the Norman personal name Fulco. The line of this name descends from the noble house of Fulco Nerra, who held the title of Count of Anjou, Normandy. [1] Guido Fitz-Fulco of Normandy was listed in the Magni Rotuli Scaccarii Normanniae (1180-1195.)

Early Origins of the Folke family

The surname Folke was first found in Norfolk where they were granted lands by William de Warrene. The first confirmed record of the family was Folco or Fulco who was listed in the Domesday Book of 1086. [2]

"Thomas Fouque occurs on the Exchequer Rolls of the Duchy about 1198. Robert Fulco was one of the Justiciaries in 1267." [3]

Rotuli Curiae Regis rolls list Robert, Geoffry, Theobald, William F. Fulco in England, 1199.

The mix of forename and surname entries continued for some time as the Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 lists Folkes (without surname) in Cambridgeshire; John Folke in Cambridgeshire; and Matilda Folkis in Buckinghamshire. [4]

The ffolkes variant was first coined by Sir Martin Browne ffolkes, 1st Baronet, FRS (1749-1821.) He was born Martin Folkes but chose to use the "ffolkes" spelling later in life. His descendants continued the tradition.

Early History of the Folke family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Folke research. Another 101 words (7 lines of text) covering the years 1653, 1685, 1596, 1662, 1644, 1652, 1638, 1710, 1690, 1765, 1690, 1754 and 1690 are included under the topic Early Folke History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Folke Spelling Variations

Before English spelling was standardized a few hundred years ago, spelling variations of names were a common occurrence. Elements of Latin, Norman French and other languages became incorporated into English throughout the Middle Ages, and name spellings changed even among the literate. The variations of the surname Folke include Folke, Folk, Folkes, Fulke, Fooke, Fooks, Foolk, Fowke and many more.

Early Notables of the Folke family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was John Fowke (c. 1596-1662), an English merchant and politician, Sheriff of London in 1644 and Lord Mayor of London in 1652; Phineas Fowke, M.D. (1638-1710), an English physician from Bishop Burton, Yorkshire; and Lieutenant General Thomas Fowke (ca. 1690-1765)...
Another 46 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Folke Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Folke family to Ireland

Some of the Folke 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 Folke migration to the United States +

In England at this time, the uncertainty of the political and religious environment of the time caused many families to board ships for distant British colonies in the hopes of finding land and opportunity, and escaping persecution. The voyages were expensive, crowded, and difficult, though, and many arrived in North America sick, starved, and destitute. Those who did make it, however, were greeted with greater opportunities and freedoms that they could have experienced at home. Many of those families went on to make important contributions to the young nations in which they settled. Early immigration records have shown some of the first Folkes to arrive on North American shores:

Folke Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • John Folke, who arrived in Virginia in 1696 [5]
Folke Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Jacob and John Folke, who settled in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1737 and 1753
Folke Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Henry Folke, who sailed from Bremen to New York in 1866
  • Josef Folke, who immigrated to Chile in 1874

Contemporary Notables of the name Folke (post 1700) +

  • Andrew Folke, American Republican politician, Postmaster at Bladensburg, Maryland, 1869-72 [6]
  • Folke Rabe (b. 1935), Swedish composer
  • Folke Bohlin (b. 1931), Swedish musicologist and choral conductor
  • Folke Bohlin (1903-1972), Swedish sailor
  • Folke Jansson (1897-1965), Swedish Olympic triple jump
  • Count Folke Bernadotte (1895-1948), active in Swedish Red Cross


The Folke 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: Qui sera sera
Motto Translation: Whatever will be.


  1. ^ 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)
  2. ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  3. ^ Cleveland, Dutchess of The Battle Abbey Roll with some Account of the Norman Lineages. London: John Murray, Abermarle Street, 1889. Print. Volume 2 of 3
  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. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, November 2) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html


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