When the ancestors of the Lessells family emigrated to England
following the Norman Conquest
in 1066 they brought their family name with them. They lived in the village of Lacella in the French region of Orne, where they were titled the Barons of Messie. CITATION[CLOSE]
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)
The family name Lessells was brought to England
after the Norman Conquest
, when William the Conqueror gave his friends and relatives most of the land formerly owned by Anglo-Saxon
aristocrats. At this time, the Old English naming system gradually dissolved. Old English names became less common and were replaced by popular continental European names. The Normans
frequently identified themselves by reference to the estates from which they came from in Northern France, as in the case of the name Lessells.
Early Origins of the Lessells family
The surname Lessells was first found in Yorkshire
, where the family was "a family of ancient standing in this county, descended from John de Laselles, of Hinderskelfe, now called Castle Howard, in the wapentake
of Bulmer, in the North riding, living in the ninth year of Edward II. For seven generations immediately following they were called 'Lascelles alias Jackson.' " CITATION[CLOSE]
Shirley, Evelyn Philip, The Noble and Gentle Men of England; The Arms and Descents. Westminster: John Bower Nichols and Sons, 1866, Print.
Sowerby in the North Riding of Yorkshire
was an early home to some of the family. "This place, at an early period, was the property of the Lascelles family, who in the reign of Elizabeth granted it to the Meynells, whose descendant Thomas Meynell, Esq., is now lord of the manor." CITATION[CLOSE]
Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
Early History of the Lessells family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Lessells research.Another 697 words (50 lines of text) covering the years 1066, 1086, 1165, 1273, 1380, 1574, 1647, 1665, 1801, 1295, 1603, 1668, 1624, 1658, 1624, 1658, 1612, 1667, 1655, 1734, 1719, 1690, 1753, 1737, 1745 and 1713 are included under the topic Early Lessells History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Lessells 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. Lessells has been recorded under many different variations, including Lascelles, Lassells, Lascell, Lassell, Lasselle, Lasell, Laselle, Lascelle, Lasceles, Lacelles, Lassels, Lacelles, Lacells, Lascells, Lasselis, Lescellis, Lessels and many more.
Early Notables of the Lessells family (pre 1700)
Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Roger Lacelles, summoned to Parliament as a Baron
in 1295; Richard Lassels (also Lascelles) (c.?1603-1668), English Roman Catholic priest and a travel writer; Thomas Lascelles (Lassells) (ca.1624-1658), English officer in the Commonwealth's army and a landowner; Thomas Lascelles (Lascelles and Lassells) (c.1624-c.1658), an... Another 76 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Lessells Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Lessells family to the New World and Oceana
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. Lessellss were some of the first of the immigrants to arrive in North America: Henry Lascelles, who sailed to Georgia in 1735; W. Lascelles, who immigrated to Nova Scotia in 1749; Eliz Laswell, who arrived in New York in 1821 with her eight children, Agnes Lascelles, who settled in New Brunswick in 1825.
Contemporary Notables of the name Lessells (post 1700)
- Gerald Lessells, American chemical engineer
- Professor John Moyes Lessells, Scottish mechanical engineer who emigrated to the United States in 1920