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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright © 2000 - 2016

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

lancaster is one of the names that was brought to England in the wave of migration following the Norman Conquest of 1066. The lancaster family lived in the city of Lancaster, in Lancashire.

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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 lancaster include Lancaster, Lancashire, Lancester, Lancoster, Lancastell and many more.

First found in Lancashire where they held a family seat as Constables of Lancaster Castle from very ancient times. The chapelry of Milburn, Westmorland is of significance to the family in early times. "The chapel, dedicated to St. Cuthbert, was founded by William de Lancaster, about 1355. Many vestiges of encampments are visible. Howgill Castle, formerly the seat of the knightly families of Lancaster and Sandford, and which, with Grange Hall and Lownthwaite, belongs to the Earl of Thanet, lord of the manor, occupies a commanding situation, half a mile east of the village; some of its walls are 10½ feet thick." [1]


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our lancaster research. Another 435 words (31 lines of text) covering the years 1068, 1066, 1070, 1114, 1150, 1334, 1618, 1650 and 1717 are included under the topic Early lancaster History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Another 53 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early lancaster Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Some of the lancaster 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.

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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 lancasters to arrive on North American shores:

lancaster Settlers in United States in the 17th Century


  • Gowen Lancaster arrived in Virginia in 1635
  • Gowen Lancaster, aged 28, arrived in Virginia in 1635
  • Owen Lancaster, who arrived in Virginia in 1639
  • Wm Lancaster, who landed in Virginia in 1658
  • Antho Lancaster, who landed in Virginia in 1665


lancaster Settlers in United States in the 18th Century


  • Marmaduke Lancaster, who landed in Virginia in 1714

lancaster Settlers in United States in the 19th Century


  • William Walter Lancaster, who arrived in New York in 1834
  • Edward, Frederick, John, Joseph, Mary, Richard, Thomas and William Lancaster all arrived in Philadelphia between 1840 and 1860

lancaster Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century


  • Mr. Christopher Lancaster U.E. who settled in Parr Town, Saint John, New Brunswick c. 1784

lancaster Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century


  • Thomas Lancaster, English convict from Chester, who was transported aboard the "Albion" on May 29, 1828, settling in New South Wales, Australia
  • Mark Lancaster, aged 28, arrived in South Australia in 1854 aboard the ship "William Prowse"
  • Sarah Lancaster, aged 18, a domestic servant, arrived in South Australia in 1859 aboard the ship "David McIvor"

lancaster Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century


  • J Lancaster landed in Wellington, New Zealand in 1840
  • John Lancaster, aged 25, a cabinet maker, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Bolton" in 1840
  • William Lancaster arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Andrew Jackson" in 1865

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  • Burton Stephen "Burt" Lancaster (1913-1994), American film actor who came to be regarded as one of the best actors of his generation
  • Penny Lancaster -Stewart (b. 1971), English model and photographer, wife of rock singer Rod Stewart
  • Sir Osbert Lancaster CBE (1908-1986), English cartoonist, author, art critic, and stage designer
  • Mary Lancaster (1907-1988), Scottish resident of Lockerbie from Scotland, who flew aboard the Pan Am Flight 103 from Frankfurt to Detroit, known as the Lockerbie bombing in 1988 and died
  • Miss Dorothy Lancaster (d. 1915), Canadian 2nd Class passenger from Montréal, Quebec, Canada, who sailed aboard the RMS Lusitania and died in the sinking
  • Miss Annie Lancaster (d. 1915), Canadian 2nd Class passenger from Montréal, Quebec, Canada, who sailed aboard the RMS Lusitania and died in the sinking
  • Mr. Francis William Lancaster (d. 1915), Canadian 2nd Class passenger from Toronto, Ontario, Canada, who sailed aboard the RMS Lusitania and died in the sinking and was recovered
  • Mr. Edward Lancaster, British Ordnance Lieutenant, who sailed in to battle on the HMS Prince of Wales and survived the sinking
  • Miss Theresa  Lancaster (1908-1917), Canadian resident from Protestant Orphanage, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada who died in the Halifax Explosion on 6th December 1917
  • Mr. Thomas  Lancaster, Canadian resident from Protestant Orphanage, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada who died in the Halifax Explosion on 6th December 1917

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  • Lancaster, the John Harrison Lancaster Families by Cora Belle Lancaster Kirk.
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  1. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.

Other References

  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. Magnusson, Magnus. Chambers Biographical Dictionary 5th edition. Edinburgh: W & R Chambers, 1990. Print.
  3. Bowman, George Ernest. The Mayflower Reader A Selection of Articales from The Mayflower Descendent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  4. Foster, Joseph. Dictionary of Heraldry Feudal Coats of Arms and Pedigrees. London: Bracken Books, 1989. Print. (ISBN 1-85170-309-8).
  5. Zieber, Eugene. Heraldry in America. Philadelphia: Genealogical Publishing Co. Print.
  6. Skordas, Guest. Ed. The Early Settlers of Maryland an Index to Names or Immigrants Complied from Records of Land Patents 1633-1680 in the Hall of Records Annapolis, Maryland. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1968. Print.
  7. Cook, Chris. English Historical Facts 1603-1688. London: MacMillan, 1980. Print.
  8. Crispin, M. Jackson and Leonce Mary. Falaise Roll Recording Prominent Companions of William Duke of Normandy at the Conquest of England. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  9. Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin . Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8).
  10. Le Patourel, John. The Norman Empire. New York: Oxford University Press, 1976. Print. (ISBN 0-19-822525-3).
  11. ...

The lancaster Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The lancaster 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 9 February 2016 at 10:12.

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