Show ContentsHowitt History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Howitt is a name that came to England in the 11th century wave of migration that was set off by the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Howitt family lived in Huet or Huest near Evreux in Normandy, France. [1] Alternatively, the name was derived from 'the son of Hugh'; Middle English Hugh, How, and Hew, diminutive Hughet and Hewet. [2]

Early Origins of the Howitt family

The surname Howitt was first found in Devon, where the first record of the family was Roger Huet, Huiet who was listed in the Pipe Rolls there in 1182, 1185. Later, the Assize Rolls listed William Huet in Shropshire in 1221 and Roger Hughet in Somerset in 1280. [3]

William de Huet paid a fine in Lincolnshire in 1204 and Peter Hughet was listed in Sussex in 1278. "Sir Walter Hewet was a distinguished warrior in France temp. Edward III., and from him descended the Hewets, created baronets 1621 and 1660, and Viscounts Hewet 1689, also eminent lawyer James Hewett, Lord Chancellor of Ireland, and 1st Viscount Lifford." [1]

Kirby's Quest of Somerset listed Gilbert Huet there temp. 1 Edward III. [4] The Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls of 1379 list: Agnes Huet-wyf; Ricardus Huetson; and Willelmus Howetson. [2]

Early History of the Howitt family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Howitt research. Another 114 words (8 lines of text) covering the years 1182, 1660, 1605, 1662, 1652, 1689, 1591, 1567, 1614, 1658, 1712, 1789, 1709, 1744 and are included under the topic Early Howitt History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Howitt Spelling Variations

The English language only became standardized in the last few centuries. For that reason, spelling variations are common among many Anglo-Norman names. The shape of the English language was frequently changed with the introduction of elements of Norman French, Latin, and other European languages; even the spelling of literate people's names were subsequently modified. Howitt has been recorded under many different variations, including Hewitt, Hewett, Hewatt, Hewet, Hewit, Hewat and others.

Early Notables of the Howitt family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Reverend Thomas Huet (died 1591), a Welsh clergyman and translator of the Bible. Sir William Hewett (d. 1567), was Lord Mayor of London, son of Edmund Hewett, was born in Wales, a hamlet of Laughton-en-le-Morthen in South Yorkshire. His family had been settled in the adjoining county of Derby from early times. [5] Reverend Dr. John Hewett...
Another 63 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Howitt Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Howitt family to Ireland

Some of the Howitt family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 106 words (8 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

United States Howitt migration to the United States +

To escape the uncertainty of the political and religious uncertainty found in England, many English families boarded ships at great expense to sail for the colonies held by Britain. The passages were expensive, though, and the boats were unsafe, overcrowded, and ridden with disease. Those who were hardy and lucky enough to make the passage intact were rewarded with land, opportunity, and social environment less prone to religious and political persecution. Many of these families went on to be important contributors to the young nations of Canada and the United States where they settled. Howitts were some of the first of the immigrants to arrive in North America:

Howitt Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • Mr. Thomas Charles Howitt, (b. 1879), aged 26, Cornish baker from St. Austell, Cornwall, UK travelling aboard the ship "Philadelphia" arriving at Ellis Island, New York on 16th July 1905 en route to South Fork, Colorado, USA [6]

Australia Howitt migration to Australia +

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

Howitt Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • William Howitt, who arrived in Kangaroo Island aboard the ship "Buffalo" in 1836 [7]
  • Thomas Howitt, aged 33, who arrived in South Australia in 1853 aboard the ship "Neptune" [8]

Contemporary Notables of the name Howitt (post 1700) +

  • Dann Paul John Howitt (b. 1964), American Major League Baseball player who played from 1989 to 1994
  • Samuel Howitt (1765-1822), English painter, illustrator and etcher, a member of an old Nottinghamshire Quaker family, born about 1765 [9]
  • William Howitt (1792-1879), English author, father of Alfred William Howitt, born at Heanor, Derbyshire, 18 Dec. 1792 where his father, Thomas Howitt, who farmed a few acres of land at Heanor, joined the Society of Friends on his marriage with Phœbe Tantum, a member of the same society, with whom he acquired a considerable fortune [9]
  • Mary Howitt (1799-1888), English poet and author, best known for the children's poem The Spider and the Fly [9]
  • Thomas Cecil Howitt OBE (1889-1968), English architect, known for The Council House, Nottingham, Baskerville House, Birmingham, Newport Civic Centre and many more buildings
  • Richard William John Howitt (b. 1977), former English cricketer
  • Richard Howitt (1864-1951), English first-class cricket for Nottinghamshire from 1893-1901
  • Peter Howitt (b. 1928), English four-time Academy Award nominated set decorator
  • Peter Howitt (b. 1957), English actor and Empire Award winning film director
  • Godfrey Howitt (1800-1863), English-born, Australian botanist and doctor
  • ... (Another 8 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

The Howitt Motto +

The motto was originally a war cry or slogan. Mottoes first began to be shown with arms in the 14th and 15th centuries, but were not in general use until the 17th century. Thus the oldest coats of arms generally do not include a motto. Mottoes seldom form part of the grant of arms: Under most heraldic authorities, a motto is an optional component of the coat of arms, and can be added to or changed at will; many families have chosen not to display a motto.

Motto: Ne te quaesiveris extra
Motto Translation: Seek nothing beyond your sphere.

  1. The Norman People and Their Existing Descendants in the British Dominions and the United States Of America. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0636-X)
  2. Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  3. Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  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. Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print
  6. Cornwall Online Parish Clerks. (Retrieved 3rd May 2018). Retrieved from
  7. State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) HMS BUFFALO 1836. Retrieved from
  8. South Australian Register Wednesday 26 October 1853. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) Neptune 1853. Retrieved
  9. Wikisource contributors. "Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900." Wikisource . Wikisource , 4 Jun. 2018. Web. 7 August 2020 on Facebook