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

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

The lineage of the name Holcombe begins with the Anglo-Saxon tribes in Britain. It is a result of when they lived in Holcombe, a very common place-name found in various locations throughout England. There are Holcombes in Devon, Dorset, Gloucestershire, Lancashire, Oxfordshire, and Somerset. The place-name is derived from the Old English elements hol, which means deep or hollow, and cumb, which means valley. The place-name taken as a whole means "deep hollow valley."


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 Holcombe has undergone many spelling variations, including Holcombe, Holcomb and others.

First found in Devon 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 Holcombe research. Another 241 words (17 lines of text) covering the year 1301 is included under the topic Early Holcombe History in all our PDF Extended History products.


More information is included under the topic Early Holcombe Notables 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 Holcombe were among those contributors:

Holcombe Settlers in United States in the 17th Century

  • Thomas Holcombe, who landed in Dorchester, Massachusetts in 1630
  • Andrew and Thomas Holcombe settled in Barbados in 1663
  • Sarah Holcombe settled in Jamaica in 1664
  • John Holcombe, who arrived in Virginia in 1670


  • Oscar Fitzallen Holcombe, American politician, Mayor of Houston, Texas for 22 years
  • Brigadier-General William Henry Holcombe (1891-1980), American Assistant Commandant of the Engineer School (1940-1942)
  • Alex O Holcombe Ph.D., (b. 1973), American Senior Lecturer in the School of Psychology at the University of Sydney
  • Richard Randall G Holcombe, American Professor of Economics
  • Malcolm Holcombe, American musician
  • Ernest Selah Holcombe, American electrical engineer
  • Chester Holcombe, American diplomat and author
  • Miss Florence Holcombe (1877-1914), Canadian Second Class Passenger from Calgary, Alberta, Canada who was traveling aboard the Empress of Ireland and died in the sinking on May 29th 1914


  • Holcombe-Doane-Henke Family History 1812-1983 by Mary Alice Henke.
  • Holcombe Ancestral Lineage by Mabel Thacher Rosemary Washburn.

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  1. Thirsk, Joan. The Agrarian History of England and Wales. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press: 7 Volumes. Print.
  2. Sanders, Joanne McRee Edition. English Settlers in Barbados 1637-1800. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  3. Cook, Chris. English Historical Facts 1603-1688. London: MacMillan, 1980. Print.
  4. Dunkling, Leslie. Dictionary of Surnames. Toronto: Collins, 1998. Print. (ISBN 0004720598).
  5. Virkus, Frederick A. Ed. Immigrant Ancestors A List of 2,500 Immigrants to America Before 1750. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1964. Print.
  6. 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).
  7. Foster, Joseph. Dictionary of Heraldry Feudal Coats of Arms and Pedigrees. London: Bracken Books, 1989. Print. (ISBN 1-85170-309-8).
  8. Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin . Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8).
  9. Samuelsen, W. David. New York City Passenger List Manifests Index 1820 - 1824. North Salt Lake, Utah: Accelerated Indexing Systems International, 1986. Print.
  10. Matthews, John. Matthews' American Armoury and Blue Book. London: John Matthews, 1911. Print.
  11. ...

The Holcombe Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Holcombe 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 13 October 2015 at 16:11.

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