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

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

The surname Hanks is a patronymic surname created from the Middle English given name Hank.


Hanks has been spelled many different ways, including Before English spelling became standardized over the last few hundred years, spelling variations in names were a common occurrence. As the English language changed in the Middle Ages, absorbing pieces of Latin and French, as well as other languages, the spelling of people's names also changed considerably, even over a single lifetime. Hanks, Hankes, Hanke, Hank, Anke, Ankes, Hancke and many more.

First found in Lincolnshire where they held a family seat as Lords of the Manor. The Saxon influence of English history diminished after the Battle of Hastings in 1066. The language of the courts was French for the next three centuries and the Norman ambience prevailed. But Saxon surnames survived and the family name was first referenced in the year 1191 when Anke of Ankinton held estates in that shire.


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Hanks research. Another 268 words (19 lines of text) covering the years 1275, 1290, and 1580 are included under the topic Early Hanks History in all our PDF Extended History products.


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


In an attempt to escape the chaos experienced in England, many English families boarded overcrowded and diseased ships sailing for the shores of North America and other British colonies. Those families hardy enough, and lucky enough, to make the passage intact were rewarded with land and a social environment less prone to religious and political persecution. Many of these families became important contributors to the young colonies in which they settled. Early immigration and passenger lists have documented some of the first Hankss to arrive on North American shores:

Hanks Settlers in United States in the 17th Century

  • George Hanks, who was a servant sent to the "Foreign Plantations" of Virginia in 1676
  • Luke Hanks, who arrived in Pennsylvania in 1682
  • John Hanks, who came to the Virginia Colony in 1690

Hanks Settlers in United States in the 18th Century

  • Ann Hanks, who arrived in Georgia in 1738
  • Ann Hanks, aged 42, arrived in Georgia in 1738
  • Edward Hanks, age 16, who arrived in Maryland in 1775
  • Issac Hanks, who arrived in Philadelphia in 1775

Hanks Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • Elijah F Hanks, who landed in Texas in 1835
  • Wesley W Hanks, who arrived in Texas in 1835
  • George Hanks, who arrived in Mobile County, Ala in 1842
  • John Hanks, aged 58, landed in New York in 1868
  • Charles Hanks, aged 11, landed in New York in 1868

Hanks Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century

  • Robert P Hanks arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "The Stratheden" in 1850
  • Richard Hanks (aged 24), a farm servant, arrived in South Australia in 1856 aboard the ship "Aliquis"


  • William F. Hanks, American ling Uist and anthropologist
  • Nancy Hanks Lincoln (1784-1818), nee Hanks, mother of United States President Abraham Lincoln
  • James Millander Hanks (1833-1909), American politician, U.S. Representative from Arkansas
  • Fletcher Hanks Sr. (1887-1976), American cartoonist from the Golden Age of Comic Books
  • Merton Hanks (b. 1968), American former NFL safety who played for the San Francisco 49ers (1991-1998) and Seattle Seahawks in 1999
  • Kerri Hanks (b. 1985), American soccer forward, three-time member of the National team
  • Colin Hanks (b. 1977), born Colin Lewes Dillingham, American actor, eldest son of Tom Hanks
  • Thomas Jeffrey "Tom" Hanks (b. 1956), American two-time Academy Award winning, five-time Primetime Emmy Award winning and four-time Golden Globe winning film actor
  • Steve Hanks, renowned American artist
  • Jim Hanks (b. 1961), American voice-over artist and character actor



  • Genealogy of the Hanks and Allied Families by Gladys Hanks Johnson.
  • Hanks Family Records, Including References to the Following: Bartow Family, Chappell Family, Hale Family, Johnston Family, Shumway Family; a Consolidated Index to Show the Location of Records by Stedman Shumway Hanks.

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  1. Hitching, F.K and S. Hitching. References to English Surnames in 1601-1602. Walton On Thames: 1910. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0181-3).
  2. Mills, A.D. Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4).
  3. Samuelsen, W. David. New York City Passenger List Manifests Index 1820 - 1824. North Salt Lake, Utah: Accelerated Indexing Systems International, 1986. Print.
  4. Burke, Sir Bernard. Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Peerage and Baronetage, The Privy Council, Knightage and Compainonage. London: Burke Publishing, 1921. Print.
  5. Bowman, George Ernest. The Mayflower Reader A Selection of Articales from The Mayflower Descendent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  6. Cook, Chris. English Historical Facts 1603-1688. London: MacMillan, 1980. Print.
  7. Hinde, Thomas Ed. The Domesday Book England's Heritage Then and Now. Surrey: Colour Library Books, 1995. Print. (ISBN 1-85833-440-3).
  8. Shaw, William A. Knights of England A Complete Record from the Earliest Time to the Present Day of the Knights of all the Orders of Chivalry in England, Scotland, Ireland and Knights Bachelors 2 Volumes. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print. (ISBN 080630443X).
  9. 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).
  10. 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).
  11. ...

The Hanks Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Hanks 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 22 December 2014 at 16:39.

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