Show ContentsHamerslay History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The name Hamerslay is of Anglo-Saxon origin and came from when the family lived in the village of Hammersley, in the county of Staffordshire. The surname Hamerslay was originally derived from the Old English word hamm, which means flat, low-lying land and the Old English word ley, which refers to a wood clearing or grove.

Early Origins of the Hamerslay family

The surname Hamerslay was first found in Staffordshire at Hammersley, "a locality probably to be found in Staffordshire." [1] We can find no record of this village today, but there is no doubt some or all of the family came from Staffordshire. By example, the Register of the University of Oxford list Walter Hamersley, in 1610 and William Hamersly in 1617 as both being from Staffordshire [1] Evidence of the family was also found at Kencott in Oxfordshire. It was here that "the family of Hammersley: the tithes were commuted for land and a money payment in 1767." [2]

Early History of the Hamerslay family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Hamerslay research. Another 77 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1687 and 1801 are included under the topic Early Hamerslay History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Hamerslay Spelling Variations

It is only in the last few hundred years that the English language has been standardized. For that reason, early Anglo-Saxon surnames like Hamerslay are characterized by many spelling variations. As the English language changed and incorporated elements of other European languages, even literate people changed the spelling of their names. Scribes and monks in the Middle Ages spelled names they sounded, so it is common to find several variations that refer to a single person. The variations of the name Hamerslay include: Hammersley, Hammersly and others.

Early Notables of the Hamerslay family (pre 1700)

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

Migration of the Hamerslay family

Many English families tired of political and religious strife left Britain for the new colonies in North America. Although the trip itself offered no relief - conditions on the ships were extremely cramped, and many travelers arrived diseased, starving, and destitute - these immigrants believed the opportunities that awaited them were worth the risks. Once in the colonies, many of the families did indeed prosper and, in turn, made significant contributions to the culture and economies of the growing colonies. An inquiry into the early roots of North American families has revealed a number of immigrants bearing the name Hamerslay or a variant listed above: Anne Hammersley settled in Virginia in 1732; Edward Hammersley and George arrived in Philadelphia in 1846; T.W. Hammersley arrived in San Francisco in 1852..

  1. Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  2. Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print. on Facebook