Show ContentsHeal History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The name Heal reached English shores for the first time with the ancestors of the Heal family as they migrated following the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Heal family lived in Norfolk. The surname Heal was a topographic name indicating that its bearer lived in or near a nook or hollow. [1]

Early Origins of the Heal family

The surname Heal was first found in Devon where they held a manor in the parish of Bradninch. One of the first on record was Roger De la Heale who was lord of Heale, temp. Henry III. [2]

They were conjecturally descended from Erchenbald, who held the lands from the Count of Mortain, as recorded in the Domesday Book in 1086. [3]

The first entry for the family was actually found in Hampshire. It was here that William de Lahela was listed in the Pipe Rolls for 1130.

A number of entries for the family were found in Somerset: John in the Hele; Edith atte Hele, Somerset; William in the Hele; and Edith in le Hele. All were listed 1 Edward III (in the first year of King Edward III's reign.) [4]

"Many more instances from the same record could be given. One thing is certain, the West country is the chief habitat of the surname." [5]"Hele and Heale are very common place-names in Devon, less frequent in Somerset, and occasionally noted in Hampshire, Wiltshire, Worcester and Surrey." [1]

Hele Elize Hele, of Wollaton, [Devon] bequeathed in 1635 the manor of Brixton Reigny and all his estates to charitable uses, and thus became the great school founder of his native county. It is a question whether the Heles really sprung from Hele near Bradninch, or Hele in Cornwood, where they can certainly be traced to the reign of Richard II. ; but the latter is probably a younger branch." [6]

Early History of the Heal family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Heal research. Another 130 words (9 lines of text) covering the years 1130, 1234, 1601, 1627, 1592, 1560, 1635, 1595, 1670, 1626, 1670, 1630, 1665, 1661, 1665, 1626, 1661, 1659, 1661, 1581, 1627, 1581, 1543, 1608, 1543 and 1644 are included under the topic Early Heal History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Heal Spelling Variations

Anglo-Norman names tend to be marked by an enormous number of spelling variations. This is largely due to the fact that Old and Middle English lacked any spelling rules when Norman French was introduced in the 11th century. The languages of the English courts at that time were French and Latin. These various languages mixed quite freely in the evolving social milieu. The final element of this mix is that medieval scribes spelled words according to their sounds rather than any definite rules, so a name was often spelled in as many different ways as the number of documents it appeared in. The name was spelled Heal, Heale, Heales, Hele and others.

Early Notables of the Heal family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Elize Hele or Elizeus Hele (1560-1635), an English lawyer and philanthropist, founder Hele's School, Devon; Sir Thomas Hele, 1st Baronet (c. 1595-1670), an English politician who sat in the House of Commons of England between 1626 and 1670 who fought on the Royalist side in the English Civil War; Thomas Hele (1630-1665), an English politician who sat in the House of Commons from 1661 to 1665; and John Hele (1626-1661), an English lawyer and politician who sat in the House of Commons between 1659 and 1661. William Heale (1581?-1627), was an English...
Another 98 words (7 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Heal Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Heal Ranking

In the United States, the name Heal is the 17,314th most popular surname with an estimated 2,487 people with that name. [7]

United States Heal migration to the United States +

Because of the political and religious discontent in England, families began to migrate abroad in enormous numbers. Faced with persecution and starvation at home, the open frontiers and generally less oppressive social environment of the New World seemed tantalizing indeed to many English people. The trip was difficult, and not all made it unscathed, but many of those who did get to Canada and the United States made important contributions to the young nations in which they settled. Some of the first North American settlers with Heal name or one of its variants:

Heal Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Julian Heal, who landed in Maryland in 1658 [8]
Heal Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Mattys Gorg Heal, who landed in New York in 1709 [8]
Heal Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • William Heal, aged 45, who arrived in New York in 1812 [8]
  • Elijah Heal, who arrived in Washington County, Pennsylvania in 1853 [8]

Australia Heal migration to Australia +

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

Heal Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century

New Zealand Heal 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:

Heal Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • H Heal, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "Matoaka" arriving in Auckland, New Zealand on 26th September 1859 [10]
  • William H. Heal, aged 37, a farm labourer, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Howrah" in 1874
  • Louisa Heal, aged 35, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Howrah" in 1874
  • Alfred Heal, aged 11, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Howrah" in 1874
  • Louisa H. Heal, aged 9, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Howrah" in 1874
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Contemporary Notables of the name Heal (post 1700) +

  • William Arthur Heal (b. 1867), American Republican politician, Member of Maine State House of Representatives from Aroostook County, 1921-22 [11]
  • Peg Heal, American Democratic Party politician, Alternate Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Florida, 2008 [11]
  • John Daniel Heal (1825-1908), English-born, Australian politician, alderman and mayor of Brisbane, Australia
  • Marc Heal (b. 1965), English musician
  • Sir Ambrose Heal (1872-1959), English furniture designer and businessman
  • Stan "Pops" Heal (1920-2010), Australian rules footballer
  • Sylvia Heal (b. 1942), British Member of Parliament, former Deputy Speaker of the House of Commons
  • Shane Heal (b. 1970), Australian basketball player
  • Robert Heal, Canadian author
  • Aaron Heal (b. 1983), Australian cricketer

  1. Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  2. Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  3. Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
  4. Dickinson, F.H., Kirby's Quest for Somerset of 16th of Edward the 3rd London: Harrison and Sons, Printers in Ordinary to Her Majesty, St, Martin's Lane, 1889. Print.
  5. Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  6. Worth, R.N., A History of Devonshire London: Elliot Stock, 62, Paternoster Row, E.G., 1895. Digital
  7. "What are the 5,000 Most Common Last Names in the U.S.?".,
  8. 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)
  9. Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 28th April 2022).
  10. New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 17th October 2018). Retrieved from
  11. The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, October 7) . Retrieved from on Facebook