Howlett History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The name Howlett was brought to England in the great wave of migration following the Norman Conquest of 1066. It comes from the Norman personal name Hugh. Howlett was a baptismal name which means the son of Hugh. As the naming tradition grew in Europe, baptismal names began to be introduced in many countries. Baptismal names were sometimes given in honour of Christian saints and other biblical figures. There are very few Christian countries in Europe that did not adopt surnames from these religious figures.

Early Origins of the Howlett family

The surname Howlett was first found in Yorkshire where early English rolls provide us a glimpse of the spelling variations used through Medieval times. Johannes Houlet et uxor ejus and Adam Howlot et Agnes uxor were listed in the Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls of 1379. Roger filius Hulot was also listed in Yorkshire in another early census. [1]

Agnes Hughelot was found in Norfolk c. 1248, Thomas Huwelot in Huntingdonshire c. 1250, and Richard Hulot in the Hundredorum Rolls of Suffolk in 1275. The Subsidy Rolls for Worcestershire included John Huelot there in 1327. [2]

Early History of the Howlett family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Howlett research. Another 64 words (5 lines of text) covering the years 1548, 1589, 1548, 1564, 1566, 1570, 1571, 1587, 1589, 1701, 1736, 1771, 1552 and 1552 are included under the topic Early Howlett History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Howlett Spelling Variations

Anglo-Norman names are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations. When the Normans became the ruling people of England in the 11th century, they introduced a new language into a society where the main languages of Old and later Middle English had no definite spelling rules. These languages were more often spoken than written, so they blended freely with one another. Contributing to this mixing of tongues was the fact that medieval scribes spelled words according to sound, ensuring that a person's name would appear differently in nearly every document in which it was recorded. The name has been spelled Howlett, Howlet, Hullett and others.

Early Notables of the Howlett family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was John Howlet (1548-1589), English Jesuit, "born in the county of Rutland in 1548. He entered at Exeter College, Oxford, in 1564, and graduated B.A. in 1566, becoming a fellow. He went abroad in 1570 with the permission of his college, intending to travel to Rome, but, entering the college of Douay in the same year, he was in 1571 received into the order of Jesus at Louvain. At Douay he was a contemporary of Campion, and studied theology. He afterwards taught many different subjects, chiefly at Douay. In 1587 he proceeded to Poland...
Another 100 words (7 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Howlett Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Howlett Ranking

In the United States, the name Howlett is the 6,314th most popular surname with an estimated 4,974 people with that name. [3] However, in Newfoundland, Canada, the name Howlett is ranked the 486th most popular surname with an estimated 97 people with that name. [4]

Ireland Migration of the Howlett family to Ireland

Some of the Howlett family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. More information about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Howlett migration to the United States +

For many English families, the political and religious disarray that plagued their homeland made the frontiers of the New World an attractive prospect. Thousands migrated, aboard cramped disease-ridden ships. They arrived sick, poor, and hungry, but were welcomed in many cases with far greater opportunity than at home in England. Many of these hardy settlers went on to make important contributions to the emerging nations in which they landed. Among early immigrants bearing the name Howlett or a variant listed above were:

Howlett Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • William Howlett, who landed in Virginia in 1622 [5]
  • Randall and William Howlett, who settled in Virginia in 1623
  • Randall Howlett, who landed in Jamestown, Va in 1624 [5]
  • Thomas Howlett, who settled in Salem Massachusetts in 1630
  • Thomas Howlett, who arrived in Ipswich, Massachusetts in 1634 [5]
Howlett Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Samuel Howlett, who landed in America in 1798 [5]
Howlett Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Robert Howlett, who arrived in Texas in 1850-1906 [5]
  • Ellen Howlett, who arrived in Colorado in 1880 [5]

Canada Howlett migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Howlett Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • John Howlett, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1824

Australia Howlett migration to Australia +

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

Howlett Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Mr. John Howlett, (b. 1789), aged 25, Irish servant who was convicted in Wexford, Ireland, for 7 years, transported aboard the "Canada" on 5th December 1814, arriving in New South Wales, Australia [6]
  • William Howlett a labourer, who arrived in Kangaroo Island aboard the ship "Emma" in 1836 [7]
  • William Howlett, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Anna Robertson" in 1839 [8]
  • Samuel Howlett, English convict from Northampton, who was transported aboard the "Anson" on September 23, 1843, settling in Van Diemen's Land, Australia [9]
  • James Howlett, aged 22, who arrived in South Australia in 1852 aboard the ship "Anglia" [10]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

New Zealand Howlett migration to New Zealand +

Emigration to New Zealand followed in the footsteps of the European explorers, such as Captain Cook (1769-70): first came sealers, whalers, missionaries, and traders. By 1838, the British New Zealand Company had begun buying land from the Maori tribes, and selling it to settlers, and, after the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840, many British families set out on the arduous six month journey from Britain to Aotearoa to start a new life. Early immigrants include:

Howlett Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Robert Howlett, aged 30, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Seringapatam" in 1856
  • James Howlett, aged 21, a farm labourer, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Ocean Mail" in 1875
  • Mary Howlett, aged 19, a dairymaid, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "British Queen" in 1883

West Indies Howlett migration to West Indies +

The British first settled the British West Indies around 1604. They made many attempts but failed in some to establish settlements on the Islands including Saint Lucia and Grenada. By 1627 they had managed to establish settlements on St. Kitts (St. Christopher) and Barbados, but by 1641 the Spanish had moved in and destroyed some of these including those at Providence Island. The British continued to expand the settlements including setting the First Federation in the British West Indies by 1674; some of the islands include Barbados, Bermuda, Cayman Island, Turks and Caicos, Jamaica and Belize then known as British Honduras. By the 1960's many of the islands became independent after the West Indies Federation which existed from 1958 to 1962 failed due to internal political conflicts. After this a number of Eastern Caribbean islands formed a free association. [11]
Howlett Settlers in West Indies in the 18th Century
  • John Howlett, who landed in Antigua (Antego) in 1705-1706 [5]

Contemporary Notables of the name Howlett (post 1700) +

  • Michael J. Howlett Sr. (1914-1992), American politician, 33rd Secretary of State of Illinois (1973-1977)
  • William B. Howlett, American Democratic Party politician, Candidate for Michigan State Senate 10th District, 1910 [12]
  • T. Henry Howlett, American Democratic Party politician, Member of Michigan State House of Representatives from Livingston County; Elected 1932 [12]
  • Robert G. Howlett, American Republican politician, Delegate to Republican National Convention from Michigan, 1960; Candidate in primary for Judge, Michigan Court of Appeals 3rd District, 1964 [12]
  • Michael J. Howlett (b. 1914), American Democratic Party politician, Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Illinois, 1956, 1960, 1964, 1972 [12]
  • Louis E. Howlett, American Democratic Party politician, Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Michigan, 1904; Candidate for Circuit Judge in Michigan 35th Circuit, 1911 [12]
  • Collins III Howlett, American Democratic Party politician, Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Virginia, 2004 [12]
  • Samuel Burt Howlett (1794-1874), English surveyor and inventor, only son of Samuel Howlett of Gracechurch Street, London, and grandson of John Howlett of the Hall, Pulham St. Mary the Virgin, Norfolk, born on 10 July 1794 [13]
  • John Howlett (1731-1804), English political economist, was doubtless son of John Howlett of Bedworth, Warwickshire [13]
  • Bartholomew Howlett (1767-1827), English draughtsman and engraver, born in Louth in Lincolnshire, was son, by his first marriage, of Bartholomew Howlett, a native of Norfolk, who was settled at Louth [13]
  • ... (Another 13 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

HMS Hood
  • Mr. Patrick Howlett (b. 1915), Canadian Ordinary Seaman serving for the Royal Navy from St. Johns, Newfoundland, Canada, who sailed into battle and died in the sinking [14]
Senghenydd colliery
  • Mr. John Howlett (b. 1874), Welsh coal miner from Senghenydd, Caerphilly, Wales who was working at the Senghenydd colliery when there was an explosion on the 14th October 1913; he died
SS Newfoundland
  • Mr. John Howlett (b. 1891), Newfoundlander from Goulds, who on the 30th March 1914 he was part of the Seal Crew of the "SS Newfoundland" leaving the ship to intercept the Stephano which took him to the hunting grounds, he disembarked to begin sealing, but was caught in a thickening storm, attempting to return to the Newfoundland he and the 132 crew made camp for two days the sealers were stranded on the ice in a blizzard attempting to return to the ship, he survived


  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)
  2. ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  3. ^ https://namecensus.com/most_common_surnames.htm
  4. ^ The order of Common Surnames in 1955 in Newfoundland retrieved on 20th October 2021 (retrieved from Family Names of the Island of Newfoundland by E.R. Seary corrected edition ISBN 0-7735-1782-0)
  5. ^ Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
  6. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 9th December 2020). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/canada
  7. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) Emma. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1836Emma.gif
  8. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) ANNA ROBERTSON 1839. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1839AnnaRobertson.htm
  9. ^ State Library of Queensland. (Retrieved 2015, January 8) Anson voyage to Van Diemen's Land, Australia in 1843 with 499 passengers. Retrieved from http://www.convictrecords.com.au/ships/anson/1843
  10. ^ South Australian Register Tuesday 3 February 1852. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) ANGLIA 1852. Retrieved http://www.theshipslist.com/ships/australia/anglia1852.shtml
  11. ^ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/British_West_Indies
  12. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, October 27) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html
  13. ^ Wikisource contributors. "Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900." Wikisource . Wikisource , 4 Jun. 2018. Web. 7 August 2020
  14. ^ H.M.S. Hood Association-Battle Cruiser Hood: Crew Information - H.M.S. Hood Rolls of Honour, Men Lost in the Sinking of H.M.S. Hood, 24th May 1941. (Retrieved 2016, July 15) . Retrieved from http://www.hmshood.com/crew/memorial/roh_24may41.htm


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