Gell History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
The ancestors of the Gell family arrived in England following the Norman Conquest of 1066. The name Gell came from the classical French name Gellius.  The name is also a pet form of the female given name Juliana or Gillian, and occasionally was given to children through rare metronymic descent. This occasionally occurred if a man married twice; in such a case the children of his second marriage would bear the name of their mother to distinguish them from the children of their father's first marriage.
Early Origins of the Gell family
The surname Gell was first found in Yorkshire and Derbyshire. "Hopton [in Derbyshire] was the property and residence of Sir John Gell, who, when Charles I. raised the royal standard at Nottingham, proceeded to Derby, assembled a strong body of troops for the parliament, and performed a conspicuous part throughout the war." 
The Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 list: Gelle Winter in Cambridgeshire; and Emma Gele in Suffolk. The Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls of 1379 list Thomas Gele. 
Early History of the Gell family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Gell research. Another 113 words (8 lines of text) covering the years 1651, 1719, 1740, 1806, 1775, 1842, 1593, 1671, 1593, 1612, 1689 and 1665 are included under the topic Early Gell History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Gell Spelling Variations
Multitudes of spelling variations are a hallmark of Anglo Norman names. Most of these names evolved in the 11th and 12th century, in the time after the Normans introduced their own Norman French language into a country where Old and Middle English had no spelling rules and the languages of the court were French and Latin. To make matters worse, medieval scribes spelled words according to sound, so names frequently appeared differently in the various documents in which they were recorded. The name was spelled Gell, Gill, Jell and others.
Early Notables of the Gell family (pre 1700)
Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Sir John Gell, 1st Baronet (1593-1671), a Parliamentarian politician and military figure in the English Civil War. His family were Wirksworth/Hopton area landholders for over 500 years. He was the son of Thomas Gell of Hopton, Derbyshire, and Millicent, daughter of Ralph Sacheverell, was born 22 June 1593. 
Because of this political and religious unrest within English society, many people decided to immigrate to the colonies. Families left for Ireland, North America, and Australia in enormous numbers, traveling at high cost in extremely inhospitable conditions. The New World in particular was a desirable destination, but the long voyage caused many to arrive sick and starving. Those who made it, though, were welcomed by opportunities far greater than they had known at home in England. Many of these families went on to make important contributions to the emerging nations of Canada and the United States. Analysis of immigration records indicates that some of the first North American immigrants bore the name Gell or a variant listed above:
Gell Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
Gell Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
Gell Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
Emigration to Australia followed the First Fleets of convicts, tradespeople and early settlers. Early immigrants include:
Gell Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
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:
Gell Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century