Holingshed History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The name Holingshed has a long Anglo-Saxon heritage. The name comes from when a family lived in the region of Hollingside or Holmside in Durham. Hollin Old Hall is a house in Bollington, Cheshire, England with parts that date back to the 17th century and Hollin Hall is a country house in Crook in Cumbria that dates back to the 14th century.

Literally, the name originated from the expression 'of the hollins head,' as in "one who dwelt at the head of the hollin-bushes." [1]

Early Origins of the Holingshed family

The surname Holingshed was first found in East Cheshire where the area has "given birth to a large number of Hollingsheads from some immediate locality of that name." [1]

By example, some of the early records include: John del Holynshede, 1408: East Cheshire; and Hugh Hollinshead, of Bosley, Yeoman, 1541, both recorded there. [1]

Early History of the Holingshed family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Holingshed research. Another 115 words (8 lines of text) covering the years 1560, 1561, 1644, 1550, 1550, 1554, 1546, 1529, 1580, 1577, 1587, 1587, 1541, 1577, 1635, 1556, 1612, 1556, 1573, 1574, 1575, 1683, 1739 and 1683 are included under the topic Early Holingshed History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Holingshed Spelling Variations

Spelling variations in names were a common occurrence before English spelling was standardized a few hundred years ago. In the Middle Ages, even the literate spelled their names differently as the English language incorporated elements of French, Latin, and other European languages. Many variations of the name Holingshed have been found, including Hollinshed, Holinshed, Hollinshead, Holinshead, Hollingshead, Holingshead, Hollins, Holins, Hollings and many more.

Early Notables of the Holingshed family (pre 1700)

Notables of this surname at this time include: Sir Hugh Hollinshed and his son, Ottiwell Hollinshed MA (fl. 1550s), English prelate, Canon of Windsor from 1550 to 1554. He was one of the original Fellows of Trinity College, Cambridge in 1546. Raphael Holinshed (1529-1580) was an English chronicler, best known for his Holinshed's Chronicles, first published in 1577, and later in a second edition in 1587. It is generally thought that Shakespeare used the revised second edition of the Chronicles (1587) as the source for most of his history plays. He "is said to have been son of Ralph Holinshed or Hollingshed...
Another 153 words (11 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Holingshed Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the Holingshed family

Families began migrating abroad in enormous numbers because of the political and religious discontent in England. Often faced with persecution and starvation in England, the possibilities of the New World attracted many English people. Although the ocean trips took many lives, those who did get to North America were instrumental in building the necessary groundwork for what would become for new powerful nations. Some of the first immigrants to cross the Atlantic and come to North America bore the name Holingshed, or a variant listed above: John and Grace Hollinshead, who came to West Jersey, from London, in circa 1678; Joseph Hollingshead who settled in Maryland in 1684; Clayton Hollingshead, who settled in Philadelphia in 1820.



  1. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)


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