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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright © 2000 - 2015

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


Spelling variations of this family name include: Levet, Levett, Levitt, Leavett, Leavitt, Livett and many more.

First found in Suffolk where they held a family seat as Lords of the Manor. William Levett (ca.1200–ca.1270) was lord of the manor of the South Yorkshire village of Hooton Levitt. After the Battle of Hastings in 1066, William, Duke of Normandy, having prevailed over King Harold, granted most of Britain to his many victorious Barons. It was not uncommon to find a Baron, or a Bishop, with 60 or more Lordships scattered throughout the country. These he gave to his sons, nephews and other junior lines of his family and they became known as under-tenants. They adopted the Norman system of surnames which identified the under-tenant with his holdings so as to distinguish him from the senior stem of the family. After many rebellious wars between his Barons, Duke William, commissioned a census of all England to determine in 1086, settling once and for all, who held which land. He called the census the Domesday Book, [1] indicating that those holders registered would hold the land until the end of time. Hence, conjecturally, the surname is descended from the tenant of the lands of Leuiet, held by a Norman noble who was recorded in the Domesday Book census of 1086.


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Leavitt research. Another 215 words(15 lines of text) covering the years 1700, 1495, 1554, 1594, 1655, 1586, 1630, 1711, 1693, 1746, 1668, 1725, 1608, 1691 and 1634 are included under the topic Early Leavitt History in all our PDF Extended History products.


Another 249 words(18 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Leavitt Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.


Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Leavitt Settlers in United States in the 17th Century

  • John Leavitt, who landed in Dorchester, Massachusetts in 1634
  • Thomas Leavitt (1616–1696) was an English Puritan who arrived in Boston, Massachusetts in 1635, one of the earliest permanent settlers of the Province of New Hampshire
  • Thomas Leavitt, who landed in New England in 1639

Leavitt Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • Wm B Leavitt, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1850
  • Stephen Leavitt, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1850
  • J B Leavitt, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1851


  • Henrietta Swan Leavitt (1868-1921), American astronomer
  • Benjamin Hanson Leavitt, American pioneer rancher, eponym of Leavitt, California
  • Caroline Leavitt (b. 1952), American novelist
  • Dana Gibson Leavitt (b. 1926), American businessman, former president of Transamerica Corporation
  • Daniel Leavitt (1801-1851), American inventor
  • David Leavitt (b. 1961), American writer
  • Humphrey H. Leavitt (1796-1873), American congressman
  • Michael O. Leavitt (b. 1951), American politician, former Governor of Utah
  • Robert Leavitt (1883-1954), American Olympic athlete
  • Ashley Day Leavitt (b. 1877), minister of the Harvard Congregational Church



  • An Index of Names of Leavitt by Julia Bumpus Brendt.

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  1. ^ Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)

Other References

  1. Hanks, Hodges, Mills and Room. The Oxford Names Companion. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2002. Print. (ISBN 0-19-860561-7).
  2. Browning, Charles H. Americans of Royal Descent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  3. Robb H. Amanda and Andrew Chesler. Encyclopedia of American Family Names. New York: Haper Collins, 1995. Print. (ISBN 0-06-270075-8).
  4. MacAulay, Thomas Babington. History of England from the Accession of James the Second 4 volumes. New York: Harper and Brothers, 1879. Print.
  5. Holt, J.C. Ed. Domesday Studies. Woodbridge: Boydell, 1987. Print. (ISBN 0-85115-477-8).
  6. Crozier, William Armstrong Edition. Crozier's General Armory A Registry of American Families Entitled to Coat Armor. New York: Fox, Duffield, 1904. Print.
  7. Matthews, John. Matthews' American Armoury and Blue Book. London: John Matthews, 1911. Print.
  8. Shaw, William A. Knights of England A Complete Record from the Earliest Time to the Present Day of the Knights of all the Orders of Chivalry in England, Scotland, Ireland and Knights Bachelors 2 Volumes. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print. (ISBN 080630443X).
  9. Burke, Sir Bernard. Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Peerage and Baronetage, The Privy Council, Knightage and Compainonage. London: Burke Publishing, 1921. Print.
  10. Bardsley, C.W. A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6).
  11. ...

The Leavitt Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Leavitt 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 1 December 2014 at 14:37.

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