Leek History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
The name Leek first arose amongst the Anglo-Saxon tribes of Britain. It is derived from their having lived in one of the places that was called Leake.
Early Origins of the Leek family
The surname Leek was first found in either Lincolnshire, Yorkshire or Nottinghamshire which all have parishes names Leake. For some of the first listings of the family, we must look to Lincolnshire where the Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 list the following: John de Lek; Roger de Leke; and Teobald de Lek as all living in that shire at that time.  Willie's Lyke-Wake is a Child Ballad, one of 305 traditional ballads from England and Scotland, and their American variants listed in the 1904 Houghton Mifflin edition. Lyke-Wake Dirge is a traditional English song that is thought to have originated in the Yorkshire area.
Early History of the Leek family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Leek research. Another 64 words (5 lines of text) covering the years 1334, 1581, 1655, 1627, 1679, 1660, 1633, 1681, 1656, 1720, 1710, 1712, 1708 and 1715 are included under the topic Early Leek History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Leek Spelling Variations
One relatively recent invention that did much to standardize English spelling was the printing press. However, before its invention even the most literate people recorded their names according to sound rather than spelling. The spelling variations under which the name Leek has appeared include Leake, Leak, Leek, Leeke, Leyke and others.
Early Notables of the Leek family (pre 1700)
Notables of this surname at this time include: Francis Leke, 1st Earl of Scarsdale (1581-1655) fought for the Royalist cause in the English Civil War; Sir Francis Leke, 1st Baronet (1627-1679), an English soldier, administrator and Member of Parliament, High Sheriff of Nottinghamshire for 1660; William Leake, the father (died...
Another 49 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Leek Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
In the United States, the name Leek is the 10,743rd most popular surname with an estimated 2,487 people with that name. 
Leek migration to the United States +
At this time, the shores of the New World beckoned many English families that felt that the social climate in England was oppressive and lacked opportunity for change. Thousands left England at great expense in ships that were overcrowded and full of disease. A great portion of these settlers never survived the journey and even a greater number arrived sick, starving, and without a penny. The survivors, however, were often greeted with greater opportunity than they could have experienced back home. These English settlers made significant contributions to those colonies that would eventually become the United States and Canada. An examination of early immigration records and passenger ship lists revealed that people bearing the name Leek arrived in North America very early:
Leek Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
- Johannis Leek, who landed in New York in 1715-1716 
- John Leek, aged 17, who arrived in Virginia in 1773 
- John Leek, who settled in Virginia in 1773
Leek migration to Australia +
Emigration to Australia
followed the First Fleets
of convicts, tradespeople and early settlers. Early immigrants include:
Leek Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
- Mr. George Leek, British Convict who was convicted in Stafford, England for 14 years, transported aboard the "Asia" on 5th November 1835, arriving in Tasmania ( Van Diemen's Land)1836 
- Elizabeth Leek, aged 16, a servant, who arrived in South Australia in 1851 aboard the ship "Prince Regent" 
- Elizabeth Leek, aged 16, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Prince Regent" in 1851 
Leek 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:
- Ann Leek, aged 50, who arrived in Nelson, New Zealand aboard the ship "Phoebe Dunbar" between 1841 and 1850
Leek Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
- Ann Leek, aged 50, who arrived in Nelson, New Zealand aboard the ship "Phoebe Dunbar" in 1850
- Christopher Leek, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "SS British King" in 1884
- Mary Leek, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "SS British King" in 1884
- George Leek, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "SS British King" in 1884
- Frank Leek, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "SS British King" in 1884
- ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Leek 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. 
Leek Settlers in West Indies in the 17th Century
- Edward Leek, who arrived in Barbados in 1679
- Aaron Leek, aged 21, who landed in Barbados in 1682 
Contemporary Notables of the name Leek (post 1700) +
- Sybil Leek (1917-1982), English witch, astrologer, psychic, and occult author
- Andy Leek (b. 1964), English musician
- Stephen Leek (b. 1959), Australian composer, conductor, educator, and publisher
- Geoff Leek (1932-2008), Australian rules footballer
- Kenneth Leek (1935-2007), Welsh footballer
Related Stories +
The Leek 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: Agendo gnaviter
Motto Translation: By acting prudently.
- ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
- ^ https://namecensus.com/most_common_surnames.htm
- ^ 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)
- ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 28th January 2020). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/asia/1835
- ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) PRINCE REGENT 1851. Retrieved http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1851PrinceRegent.htm
- ^ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/British_West_Indies