Monkman History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The name Monkman reached English shores for the first time with the ancestors of the Monkman family as they migrated following the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Monkman family lived in Northumberland. Monkhouse is one of several names that find their roots in the Anglo-Saxon terms munec, meaning monk, and hus, meaning house. It may be either local or occupational in origin, signifying worker at the monk's house in some instances and dweller at the monk's house in others. The surname may have also been used to identify one who hailed from any of several places in England called Monkhouse. In some cases the name may also be an Anglicized version of the Norman local surname Monceaux.

Early Origins of the Monkman family

The surname Monkman was first found in Northumberland where the "surname is derived from a geographical locality. 'at the monk-house,' i.e. the house where the monk or monks resided." [1] [2].

One of the first records of the family was found in the Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls of 1379: Rogerus del Munkhous. Later the Wills at Chester listed Thomas Munkas, of Chorlton, Manchester in 1660. [1]

Early History of the Monkman family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Monkman research. Another 92 words (7 lines of text) covering the years 129 and 1290 are included under the topic Early Monkman History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Monkman Spelling Variations

Anglo-Norman names tend to be marked by an enormous number of spelling variations. This is largely due to the fact that Old and Middle English lacked any spelling rules when Norman French was introduced in the 11th century. The languages of the English courts at that time were French and Latin. These various languages mixed quite freely in the evolving social milieu. The final element of this mix is that medieval scribes spelled words according to their sounds rather than any definite rules, so a name was often spelled in as many different ways as the number of documents it appeared in. The name was spelled Monkhouse, Monckhouse, Monkhowse and others.

Early Notables of the Monkman family (pre 1700)

More information is included under the topic Early Monkman Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Monkman migration to the United States +

Because of the political and religious discontent in England, families began to migrate abroad in enormous numbers. Faced with persecution and starvation at home, the open frontiers and generally less oppressive social environment of the New World seemed tantalizing indeed to many English people. The trip was difficult, and not all made it unscathed, but many of those who did get to Canada and the United States made important contributions to the young nations in which they settled. Some of the first North American settlers with Monkman name or one of its variants:

Monkman Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • Edward Monkman, aged 34, who settled in Brooklyn, N.Y., in 1923

New Zealand Monkman 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:

Monkman Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Mr. Monkman, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "Donna Anita" arriving in Lyttelton, Canterbury, New Zealand on 14th June 1863 [3]

Contemporary Notables of the name Monkman (post 1700) +

  • Francis Monkman (b. 1949), English rock, classical and film score composer from Hampstead, North London
  • Noel Monkman (1896-1969), Australian filmmaker, best known for his underwater photography of the Great Barrier Reef
  • Kent Monkman (b. 1965), Canadian First Nations artist
  • Alexander Monkman (1870-1941), Canadian Métis trading pioneer, born at Manitoba House, eponym of Monkman Pass, Monkman Provincial Park and Monkman Falls


The Monkman 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: Monachus Salvabor
Motto Translation: A monk (house) shall be saved.


  1. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  2. ^ Harrison, Henry, Surnames of the United Kingdom: A Concise Etymological Dictionary Baltimore: Geneological Publishing Company, 2013. Print
  3. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 17th October 2018). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html


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