Gale History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The name Gale has a history dating as far back as the Anglo-Saxon tribes of Britain. It was a name for a person who was known for their cheerful personality and their jovial disposition. The surname Gale was originally derived form the Old English word gal, which described a person as being pleasant and merry. [1]

Early Origins of the Gale family

The surname Gale was first found in Yorkshire where the Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls of 1379 list Johanna del Gaylle; Agnes del Gaylle; Johannes del Gayle; and Willelmus Gayle as all holding lands there at that time. [2]

One source claims the name is a "Scottish Highlander," [3] and in Scotland, "strangers to the Gadhelic people were called Gall, and this gave rise to surnames such as Gauld, Gall, and the Lowland Galt. Gall in the common speech was pronounced 'Gaw.' A rather common surname in Perth and especially in the Muirton of Balhousie during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. John Gal was witness to a grant to the Blackfriars of Perth in 1334." [4]

Early History of the Gale family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Gale research. Another 86 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1534, 1546, 1596, 1597, 1628, 1678, 1635, 1702, 1671, 1701, 1680, 1721, 1647, 1721, 1670, 1735 and 1660 are included under the topic Early Gale History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Gale Spelling Variations

Spelling variations in names were a common occurrence before English spelling was standardized a few hundred years ago. In the Middle Ages, even the literate spelled their names differently as the English language incorporated elements of French, Latin, and other European languages. Many variations of the name Gale have been found, including Gale, Gail, Gaile, Gales and others.

Early Notables of the Gale family (pre 1700)

Notables of the family at this time include George Gale, Mayor of York; Dunstan Gale ( fl. 1596), an English poet, author of a poem entitled 'Pyramus and Thisbe,' supposed to have been printed for the first time in 1597. [5] Theophilus Gale (1628-1678), was an English educationalist, nonconformist and theologian of dissent from Kingsteignton, Devon; Thomas Gale (1635?-1702), an English classical scholar, antiquarian and cleric from Scruton, Yorkshire; Mildred Gale (1671-1701), born Mildred Warner in the Colony of Virginia, paternal grandmother of President George Washington; and John Gale (1680-1721), an English Baptist theologian; and his son...
Another 95 words (7 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Gale Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Gale World Ranking

In the United States, the name Gale is the 2,228th most popular surname with an estimated 14,922 people with that name. [6] However, in Newfoundland, Canada, the name Gale is ranked the 179th most popular surname with an estimated 223 people with that name. [7] And in Australia, the name Gale is the 509th popular surname with an estimated 7,483 people with that name. [8] The United Kingdom ranks Gale as 550th with 11,816 people. [9]


United States Gale migration to the United States +

Families began migrating abroad in enormous numbers because of the political and religious discontent in England. Often faced with persecution and starvation in England, the possibilities of the New World attracted many English people. Although the ocean trips took many lives, those who did get to North America were instrumental in building the necessary groundwork for what would become for new powerful nations. Some of the first immigrants to cross the Atlantic and come to North America bore the name Gale, or a variant listed above:

Gale Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • John Gale, who settled in Virginia in 1623 with his wife Mary
  • Edmond Gale, who arrived in Massachusetts in 1630 [10]
  • Daniell Gale, who arrived in Virginia in 1649 [10]
  • Hu Gale, who arrived in New England in 1652 [10]
  • Isaac Gale, who settled in Virginia in 1654
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Gale Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Edward Gale, who landed in Virginia in 1714 [10]
  • Edward Gale, who arrived in New England in 1733 [10]
  • Francis Gale, who landed in America in 1782 [10]
Gale Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Hen Gale, who landed in America in 1805 [10]
  • J, Gale Jr., who arrived in Mobile, Ala in 1821 [10]
  • Jos Gale, aged 52, who arrived in New Orleans, La in 1829 [10]
  • M Gale, who landed in New Orleans, La in 1829 [10]
  • G Gale, who arrived in New Orleans, La in 1829 [10]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Australia Gale migration to Australia +

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

Gale Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Samuel Gale, English convict from Leicester, who was transported aboard the "Andromeda" on October 16, 1826, settling in Van Diemen's Land, Australia [11]
  • Mr. George Gale, English convict who was convicted in Wiltshire, England for 14 years, transported aboard the "Augusta Jessie" on 27 September 1834, arriving in Tasmania ( Van Diemen's Land) [12]
  • William Gale, who arrived in Port Misery aboard the ship "Duchess of Northumberland" in 1839 [13]
  • Mr. Samuel Gale, English convict who was convicted in Dorset, England for 15 years, transported aboard the "David Clarke" on 3rd June 1841, arriving in Tasmania ( Van Diemen's Land) [14]
  • Mr. Bartholomew Gale, (b. 1810), aged 38, English shoe maker who was convicted in Dorchester, Dorset, England for 14 years for stealing, transported aboard the "Eden" on 30th September 1848, arriving in Tasmania ( Van Diemen's Island), he died in 1893 [15]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

New Zealand Gale 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:

Gale Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Mr. W.M. Gale, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "Lord Worsley" arriving in Dunedin, Otago, South Island, New Zealand on 4th October 1858 [16]
  • Mr. Edward Gale, British settler travelling from Liverpool aboard the ship 'Mermaid' arriving in Auckland, New Zealand on 19th October 1859 [16]
  • Mrs. Gale, British settler travelling from Liverpool aboard the ship 'Mermaid' arriving in Auckland, New Zealand on 19th October 1859 [16]
  • Mr. Edward Gale, British settler travelling from Liverpool aboard the ship 'Mermaid' arriving in Auckland, New Zealand on 19th October 1859 [16]
  • Miss Eliza Gale, British settler travelling from Liverpool aboard the ship 'Mermaid' arriving in Auckland, New Zealand on 19th October 1859 [16]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

West Indies Gale migration to West Indies +

The British first settled the British West Indies around 1604. They made many attempts but failed in some to establish settlements on the Islands including Saint Lucia and Grenada. By 1627 they had managed to establish settlements on St. Kitts (St. Christopher) and Barbados, but by 1641 the Spanish had moved in and destroyed some of these including those at Providence Island. The British continued to expand the settlements including setting the First Federation in the British West Indies by 1674; some of the islands include Barbados, Bermuda, Cayman Island, Turks and Caicos, Jamaica and Belize then known as British Honduras. By the 1960's many of the islands became independent after the West Indies Federation which existed from 1958 to 1962 failed due to internal political conflicts. After this a number of Eastern Caribbean islands formed a free association. [17]
Gale Settlers in West Indies in the 17th Century
  • Richard Gale, who settled in Barbados in 1635
  • Mr. Richard Gale, (b. 1619), aged 16, British settler travelling from London, England aboard the ship "Anne and Elizabeth" arriving in Barbados in 1635 [18]
  • John Gale, who settled in Barbados in 1685

Contemporary Notables of the name Gale (post 1700) +

  • Zona Gale (1874-1938), American author and playwright awarded the 1921 Pulitzer Prize for Drama
  • Henry Gordon Gale (1874-1942), American astrophysicist, author and editor of the Astrophysical Journal from 1912 to 1940
  • John Gale (1953-2019), English professional poker player based in Bushey, Hertfordshire who had live tournament winnings exceeding $3,600,000
  • Robert Alec "Bob" Gale (1933-2018), English first-class cricketer for Middlesex (1956-1965) and businessman, from Old Warden, Bedfordshire
  • Dr. Barbara Gale M.B.E., British Chief Executive for St Nicholas Hospice Care Charity, was appointed Member of the Order of the British Empire on 29th December 2018 for services to Hospice Care and the community in Suffolk [19]
  • General Sir Richard Nelson Gale GCB, KBE, DSO, MC (1896-1982), British soldier, recipient of the Military Cross in 1918 and eventually became the Deputy Supreme Allied Commander Europe
  • Walter Frederick Gale (1865-1945), Australian banker and astronomer awarded the Jackson-Gwilt Medal of the Royal Astronomical Society in 1935
  • Ernest Frederick Gale FRS (1914-2005), British microbiologist
  • Hon. George Alexander Gale CC, QC (1906-1997), Canadian Chief Justice for the province of Ontario, Canada from 1967 until his 1976 retirement
  • Darwin Gale Schisler (1933-2020), American politician, Member of the United States House of Representatives from Illinois (1965-1967)

Empress of Ireland
  • Mr. Thomas John Gale, British Assistant Steward from United Kingdom who worked aboard the Empress of Ireland and died in the sinking [20]
HMAS Sydney II
HMS Hood
  • Mr. Ronald M Gale (b. 1918), English Cook (O) serving for the Royal Navy from Southampton, Hampshire, England, who sailed into battle and died in the sinking [22]
HMS Prince of Wales
HMS Repulse
  • Mr. George H Gale, British Petty Officer, who sailed into battle on the HMS Repulse and survived the sinking [24]
RMS Titanic
  • Mr. Harry Gale (d. 1912), aged 38, English Second Class passenger from Harrowbarrow, Cornwall who sailed aboard the RMS Titanic and died in the sinking [25]
  • Mr. Shadrach Gale (d. 1912), aged 33, English Second Class passenger from Harrowbarrow, Cornwall who sailed aboard the RMS Titanic and died in the sinking [25]
SS Caribou
  • Mr. Jerome Gale (b. 1924), Newfoundland crew member from Cape Ray, Newfoundland and Labrador was travelling aboard the railway ferry "SS Caribou" when it was struck by a German submarine torpedo on 14th October 1942, the most significant sinking in Canadian waters at that time, he died in the sinking
  • Mr. George Gale (b. 1897), Newfoundland crew member from Cape Ray, Newfoundland and Labrador was travelling aboard the railway ferry "SS Caribou" when it was struck by a German submarine torpedo on 14th October 1942, the most significant sinking in Canadian waters at that time, he died in the sinking


Suggested Readings for the name Gale +

  • Genealogy of the Gale Family by George Gale.

  1. ^ Smith, Eldson Coles, New Dictionary of American Family Names New York: Harper & Row, 1956. Print
  2. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  3. ^ Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  4. ^ Black, George F., The Surnames of Scotland Their Origin, Meaning and History. New York: New York Public Library, 1946. Print. (ISBN 0-87104-172-3)
  5. ^ Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print
  6. ^ https://namecensus.com/most_common_surnames.htm
  7. ^ The order of Common Surnames in 1955 in Newfoundland retrieved on 20th October 2021 (retrieved from Family Names of the Island of Newfoundland by E.R. Seary corrected edition ISBN 0-7735-1782-0)
  8. ^ https://forebears.io/australia/surnames
  9. ^ https://www.surnamemap.eu/unitedkingdom/surnames_ranking.php?p=10
  10. ^ 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)
  11. ^ State Library of Queensland. (Retrieved 2016, October 27) Andromeda voyage to Van Diemen's Land, Australia in 1826 with 147 passengers. Retrieved from http://www.convictrecords.com.au/ships/andromeda/1826
  12. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 14th August 2020). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/augusta-jessie
  13. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) THE DUCHESS OF NORTHUMBERLAND - 1839. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1839DuchessOfNorthumberland.htm
  14. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 3rd June 2021). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/david-clarke
  15. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 15th November 2021). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/eden
  16. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 17th October 2018). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html
  17. ^ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/British_West_Indies
  18. ^ Pilgrim Ship Lists Early 1600's retrieved 23rd September 2021. (Retrieved from https://www.packrat-pro.com/ships/shiplist.htm)
  19. ^ "Birthday and New Year Honours Lists (1940 to 2019)." Issue 62507, 28 December 2018 | London Gazette, The Gazette, Dec. 2018, www.thegazette.co.uk/honours-lists
  20. ^ Commemoration Empress of Ireland 2014. (Retrieved 2014, June 17) . Retrieved from http://www.empress2014.ca/seclangen/listepsc1.html
  21. ^ HMAS Sydney II, Finding Sydney Foundation - Roll of Honour. (Retrieved 2014, April 24) . Retrieved from http://www.findingsydney.com/roll.asp
  22. ^ H.M.S. Hood Association-Battle Cruiser Hood: Crew Information - H.M.S. Hood Rolls of Honour, Men Lost in the Sinking of H.M.S. Hood, 24th May 1941. (Retrieved 2016, July 15) . Retrieved from http://www.hmshood.com/crew/memorial/roh_24may41.htm
  23. ^ HMS Prince of Wales Crew members. (Retrieved 2014, April 9) . Retrieved from http://www.forcez-survivors.org.uk/biographies/listprincecrew.html
  24. ^ HMS Repulse Crew members. (Retrieved 2014, April 9) . Retrieved from http://www.forcez-survivors.org.uk/biographies/listrepulsecrew.html
  25. ^ Titanic Passenger List - Titanic Facts. (Retrieved 2016, July 13) . Retrieved from http://www.titanicfacts.net/titanic-passenger-list.html


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