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

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

The name Hitchens has a rich and ancient history. It is an Anglo-Saxon name that was originally derived from the baptismal name Richard. 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.


Before English spelling was standardized a few hundred years ago, spelling variations of names were a common occurrence. Elements of Latin, French and other languages became incorporated into English through the Middle Ages, and name spellings changed even among the literate. The variations of the surname Hitchens include Hitchins, Hitchen, Hitchens, Hitchin, Hitchings, Hitchins, Hitching and many more.

First found in Oxfordshire 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 Hitchens research. Another 123 words(9 lines of text) covering the years 1279, 1665, 1675 and 1727 are included under the topic Early Hitchens History in all our PDF Extended History products.


Another 33 words(2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Hitchens Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.


A great wave of immigration to the New World was the result of the enormous political and religious disarray that struck England at that time. Families left for the New World in extremely large numbers. The long journey was the end of many immigrants and many more arrived sick and starving. Still, those who made it were rewarded with an opportunity far greater than they had known at home in England. These emigrant families went on to make significant contributions to these emerging colonies in which they settled. Some of the first North American settlers carried this name or one of its variants:

Hitchens Settlers in United States in the 17th Century

  • Arthur Hitchens settled in Maine in 1616
  • John Hitchens settled in Virginia in 1654
  • Margaret and Anne Hitchens settled in Barbados in 1663

Hitchens Settlers in United States in the 18th Century

  • Richard Hitchens, who landed in America in 1760-1763
  • William Hitchens, who arrived in America in 1760-1763
  • Richard and William Hitchens settled in New England in 1761

Hitchens Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century

  • Joseph Hitchens arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Santipore" in 1848
  • Mary Ann Hitchens arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Santipore" in 1848
  • John Hitchens, aged 25, arrived in South Australia in 1855 aboard the ship "Thomas Arbuthnot"
  • Thomas Hitchens, aged 24, arrived in South Australia in 1857 aboard the ship "Burlington"


  • Julia Clara Catharine Dolores Birk Olsen Hitchens (1907-1973), better known as Dolores Hitchens, an American mystery novelist who wrote under the pseudonyms D. B. Olsen, Dolan Birkley and Noel Burke
  • Gerry Hitchens (1934-1983), English footballer
  • Ivon Hitchens (1893-1979), English painter, member of the 'London Group' of artists
  • Christopher Eric Hitchens (1949-2011), British author, journalist and literary critic
  • Peter Hitchens (b. 1951), British author, journalist and broadcaster
  • Timothy Mark "Tim" Hitchens CMG, LVO (b. 1962), British diplomat, Assistant Private Secretary to the Queen, British Ambassador to Japan (2012-)


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  1. 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).
  2. 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.
  3. 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.
  4. Marcharn, Frederick George. A Constitutional History of Modern England 1485 to the Present. London: Harper and Brothers, 1960. Print.
  5. Library of Congress. American and English Genealogies in the Library of Congress. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1967. Print.
  6. Thirsk, Joan. The Agrarian History of England and Wales. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press: 7 Volumes. Print.
  7. Virkus, Frederick A. Ed. Immigrant Ancestors A List of 2,500 Immigrants to America Before 1750. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1964. Print.
  8. Innes, Thomas and Learney. The Tartans of the Clans and Families of Scotland 1st Edition. Edinburgh: W & A. K. Johnston Limited, 1938. Print.
  9. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  10. Dunkling, Leslie. Dictionary of Surnames. Toronto: Collins, 1998. Print. (ISBN 0004720598).
  11. ...

The Hitchens Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Hitchens 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 26 August 2013 at 16:10.

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