Lessels History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The vast movement of people that followed the Norman Conquest of England of 1066 brought the Lessels family name to the British Isles. They lived in the village of Lacella in the French region of Orne, where they were titled the Barons of Messie.

"William de Lacelles, who in 1165 held two fees in Yorkshire, was plaintiff in a suit against his uncle Ralph for Lacelle and the barony of Messie, which Ralph inherited to him as an inheritance." [1]

"This Norman adventurer seems to have been requited for his services by grants in the Northern Counties, particularly in Yorkshire, where his descendants were seated at a very early period." [2]

Early Origins of the Lessels family

The surname Lessels 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.' " [3]

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." [4]

"Roger de Lascelles is mentioned in 1131 as one of the 'men' of Earl of Stephen of Richmond, and held Scruton and Kirby in the North Riding [of Yorkshire]." [5]

Early History of the Lessels family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Lessels research. Another 349 words (25 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 Lessels History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Lessels Spelling Variations

A multitude of spelling variations characterize Norman surnames. Many variations occurred because Old and Middle English lacked any definite spelling rules. The introduction of Norman French to England also had a pronounced effect, as did the court languages of Latin and French. Therefore, one person was often referred to by several different spellings in a single lifetime. The various spellings include Lascelles, Lassells, Lascell, Lassell, Lasselle, Lasell, Laselle, Lascelle, Lasceles, Lacelles, Lassels, Lacelles, Lacells, Lascells, Lasselis, Lescellis, Lessels and many more.

Early Notables of the Lessels 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 officer in the Commonwealth's army and a landowner; Francis Lascelles (1612-1667), of Stank...
Another 63 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Lessels Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Lessels migration to the United States +

Many English families left England, to avoid the chaos of their homeland and migrated to the many British colonies abroad. Although the conditions on the ships were extremely cramped, and some travelers arrived diseased, starving, and destitute, once in the colonies, many of the families prospered and made valuable contributions to the cultures of what would become the United States and Canada. Research into the origins of individual families in North America has revealed records of the immigration of a number of people bearing the name Lessels or a variant listed above:

Lessels Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • William R. Lessels, aged 17, who arrived in America from Moffat, Scotland, in 1911
  • Alex Lessels, aged 21, who arrived in America from Moffat, Scotland, in 1913
  • Maggie Lessels, aged 19, who arrived in America from Moffat, Scotland, in 1914
  • Andrew Peat Lessels, aged 23, who arrived in America from Glasgow, Scotland, in 1923
  • Catherine Lessels, aged 26, who arrived in America from Dunfermline, Scotland, in 1923
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Contemporary Notables of the name Lessels (post 1700) +

  • Bruce Lessels, American gold and bronze medalist slalom canoer at the 1987 ICF Canoe Slalom World Championships
  • Clarence Lessels, American Republican politician, Elected New Hampshire State House of Representatives from Concord 5th Ward 1956 [6]
  • John Lessels (1809-1883), Scottish architect and artist


  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. ^ Burke, John Bernard, The Roll of Battle Abbey. London: Edward Churton, 26, Holles Street, 1848, Print.
  3. ^ Shirley, Evelyn Philip, The Noble and Gentle Men of England; The Arms and Descents. Westminster: John Bower Nichols and Sons, 1866, Print.
  4. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  5. ^ Cleveland, Dutchess of The Battle Abbey Roll with some Account of the Norman Lineages. London: John Murray, Abermarle Street, 1889. Print. Volume 2 of 3
  6. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, November 3) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html


Houseofnames.com on Facebook