Hounsley History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
- Origins Available:
The name Hounsley was brought to England by the Normans when they conquered the country in 1066. It comes from the Germanic personal name Ansell composed of the elements ans, which means god, and helm, which means protection or helmet. 
Early Origins of the Hounsley family
The surname Hounsley was first found in the English county of Kent where they were granted lands shortly after the Norman Conquest by King William the Conqueror in 1066 A.D. The family is believed to be descended from Pierre Anselm, Archbishop of Canterbury, Ansell being the abbreviation adopted by most branches of this noble Norman family who accompanied the Conqueror into England.
Saint Anselm of Aosta (c. 1033-1109), was a theologian, Abbot of Bec, and Archbishop of Canterbury. He was "born at or near Aosta about the year 1033, or two years before the death of Cnut, king of England, and two years before William the Conqueror became duke of Normandy. William the Conqueror received his death-wound in 1087. In the presence of Anselm we are told that he who to most men seemed harsh and terrible became so mild that bystanders looked on with amazement. " 
Early History of the Hounsley family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Hounsley research. Another 91 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1086, 1660, 1929 and 1689 are included under the topic Early Hounsley History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Hounsley Spelling Variations
Before English spelling was standardized a few hundred years ago, spelling variations of names were a common occurrence. Elements of Latin, Norman French and other languages became incorporated into English throughout the Middle Ages, and name spellings changed even among the literate. The variations of the surname Hounsley include Ansell, Ancell, Ancelle, Anselm, Anselme, Anstrell and many more.
Early Notables of the Hounsley family (pre 1700)
Another 34 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Hounsley Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Hounsley family
In England at this time, the uncertainty of the political and religious environment of the time caused many families to board ships for distant British colonies in the hopes of finding land and opportunity, and escaping persecution. The voyages were expensive, crowded, and difficult, though, and many arrived in North America sick, starved, and destitute. Those who did make it, however, were greeted with greater opportunities and freedoms that they could have experienced at home. Many of those families went on to make important contributions to the young nations in which they settled. Early immigration records have shown some of the first Hounsleys to arrive on North American shores: Edward Ansell, who settled in Nevis in 1663; Elizabeth Ansell, aged 17, who settled in Virginia in 1685; Claude Anselme, who arrived at New Orleans in 1719.
Related Stories +
- ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
- ^ Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print