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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright 2000 - 2015

Where did the English Hands family come from? What is the English Hands family crest and coat of arms? When did the Hands family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the Hands family history?

The name Hands is tied to the ancient Anglo-Saxon culture of England. It comes from the baptismal name for the son of John. The given name John was originally derived from the Dutch Hans or Han. As the naming tradition grew in Europe baptismal names began to be introduced in many countries. Baptismal names were sometimes given in honor of Christian saints and other biblical figures. There are very few Christian countries in Europe that did not adopt surnames from these religious figures.


Only recently has spelling become standardized in the English language. As the English language evolved in the Middle Ages, the spelling of names changed also. The name Hands has undergone many spelling variations, including Hand, Hands and others.

First found in Cheshire 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.


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Hands research. Another 296 words (21 lines of text) covering the year 1200 is included under the topic Early Hands History in all our PDF Extended History products.


More information is included under the topic Early Hands Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.


Some of the Hands family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 157 words (11 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.


To escape the unstable social climate in England of this time, many families boarded ships for the New World with the hope of finding land, opportunity, and greater religious and political freedom. Although the voyages were expensive, crowded, and difficult, those families that arrived often found greater opportunities and freedoms than they could have experienced at home. Many of those families went on to make significant contributions to the rapidly developing colonies in which they settled. Early North American records indicate many people bearing the name Hands were among those contributors:

Hands Settlers in United States in the 17th Century

  • Christopher Hands, who arrived in Maryland in 1659
  • Richard Hands, who landed in Pennsylvania in 1682

Hands Settlers in United States in the 18th Century

  • Thomas Bedingfield Hands, who arrived in Maryland in 1739
  • John Hands, who arrived in America in 1766

Hands Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • Henry Hands, who landed in New York, NY in 1841

Hands Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century

  • Frederick Hands arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Zealandia" in 1881


  • Mr. Bernard Hands (d. 1912), aged 53, English Fireman/Stoker from Southampton, Hampshire who worked aboard the RMS Titanic and died in the sinking


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  1. Chadwick, Nora Kershaw and J.X.W.P Corcoran. The Celts. London: Penguin, 1790. Print. (ISBN 0140212116).
  2. Matthews, John. Matthews' American Armoury and Blue Book. London: John Matthews, 1911. Print.
  3. Browning, Charles H. Americans of Royal Descent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  4. Library of Congress. American and English Genealogies in the Library of Congress. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1967. Print.
  5. Weis, Frederick Lewis, Walter Lee Sheppard and David Faris. Ancestral Roots of Sixty Colonists Who Came to New England Between 1623 and 1650 7th Edition. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0806313676).
  6. Bede, The Venerable. Historia Ecclesiatica Gentis Anglorum (The Ecclesiastical History Of the English People). Available through Internet Medieval Sourcebook the Fordham University Centre for Medieval Studies. Print.
  7. Filby, P. William and Mary K Meyer. Passenger and Immigration Lists Index in Four Volumes. Detroit: Gale Research, 1985. Print. (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8).
  8. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  9. Innes, Thomas and Learney. The Tartans of the Clans and Families of Scotland 1st Edition. Edinburgh: W & A. K. Johnston Limited, 1938. Print.
  10. Shirley, Evelyn Philip. Noble and Gentle Men of England Or Notes Touching The Arms and Descendants of the Ancient Knightley and Gentle Houses of England Arranged in their Respective Counties 3rd Edition. Westminster: John Bowyer Nichols and Sons, 1866. Print.
  11. ...

The Hands Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Hands Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

This page was last modified on 5 February 2015 at 23:46.

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