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The Norman Conquest of England in 1066 brought much change to the island nation, including many immigrants with new names. Among these immigrants were the ancestors of the Mowbray family, who lived in Northumberland. The name, however, is a reference to the family's place of residence prior to the Norman Conquest of England in 1066, Montbrai, in La Manche, Normandy. However, another source claims the family claim descent from "the ancient barony of Mowbray, called by Odericus Vitalis Molbraium, [which] was identical with the village of Monbrai, in the canton or Perci, an arrondissement of St. Lo in Normandy." [1]CITATION[CLOSE]
Lowe, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.


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The surname Mowbray was first found in Northumberland Geoffrey de Montbray (d. 1093,) bishop of Coutances was a warrior, administrator and close assistant of William the Conqueror.

After the death of William, Geoffrey settled in Bristol, (as listed in the Domesday Book) where he built a strong castle but frequently feuded with William II." A strong castle was erected [at Thirsk in the North Riding of Yorkshire] about 979 by the family of Mowbray, where Roger de Mowbray in the time of Henry II., having become a confederate of the King of Scotland, erected his standard against his lawful sovereign: upon the suppression of the revolt, this fortress, with many others, was entirely demolished by order of the king." [2]CITATION[CLOSE]
Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
The same Roger de Mowbray also held Bambrough Castle in Northumberland. "After the Norman Conquest it was held by Robert de Mowbray, on whose insurrection against William Rufus it was besieged, and, after an obstinate defence, surrendered to that monarch, who threatened, unless it were given up, to put out the eyes of Mowbray, who had been taken prisoner." [2]CITATION[CLOSE]
Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.

The markettown and parish of Kirby-Malzeard in the West Riding of Yorkshire was another ancient family seat. "This place was the property of the Mowbray family, afterwards dukes of Norfolk, whose castle here was demolished in the reign of Henry II., and one of whom, John de Mowbray, obtained for the inhabitants in the reign of Edward I. a charter for a weekly market and two annual fairs." [2]CITATION[CLOSE]
Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.

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 Mowbray, Moubray, Mowbrey, Moubrey and others.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Mowbray research. Another 417 words (30 lines of text) covering the years 1297, 1366, 1399, 1377, 1396, 1444, 1476, 1475, 1225, 1314, 1365, 1399, 1397, 1385, 1405 and 1405 are included under the topic Early Mowbray History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Thomas Mowbray (1365-1399), an English nobleman, created 1st Duke of Norfolk in 1397, by King Richard II of England; and Thomas de Mowbray (1385-1405), 4th Earl of Norfolk, 2nd Earl of Nottingham, 8th Baron Segrave, 7th Baron Mowbray, English nobleman and rebel, after...

Another 85 words (6 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Mowbray Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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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 Mowbray or a variant listed above:

Mowbray Settlers in United States in the 18th Century

  • Arthur Mowbray, who settled in South Carolina in 1746

Mowbray Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • Philip Mowbray, aged 30, landed in New York in 1812
  • W Mowbray, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1855
  • Laura Mowbray, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1855
  • Andrew, Hugh, Robert, Thomas, and William Mowbray, who all arrived at Philadelphia between 1840 and 1860

Mowbray Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century

  • Alexander Mowbray arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Whitby" in 1841
  • William Mowbray arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Midlothian" in 1859
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  • Henry Siddons Mowbray (1858-1928), American artist
  • Lincoln J. Mowbray, American politician, Candidate for New York State Assembly from Delaware County, 1911
  • G. W. Mowbray Sr., American politician, Mayor of Tulsa, Oklahoma, 1903-04
  • Calvin W. Mowbray, American politician, Mayor of Cambridge, Maryland, 1960-64
  • Alan Mowbray (1896-1969), English-born, American actor
  • Calvin W Mowbray, American Mayor of Cambridge, Maryland from 1960-1964
  • Joel Mowbray, American columnist
  • Guy Nicholas Mowbray (b. 1972), English football commentator on British television
  • Anthony Mark "Tony" Mowbray (b. 1963), English former professional football player
  • Malcolm Mowbray (b. 1949), British screenwriter and television and film director
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Mowbray Historic Events



HMS Repulse

  • Mr. John Henry Mowbray (b. 1904), British Stoker 1st Class, who sailed into battle on the HMS Repulse and died during the sinking
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Citations



  1. ^ Lowe, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  2. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.

Other References

  1. Leeson, Francis L. Dictionary of British Peerages. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1986. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-1121-5).
  2. Hanks, Patricia and Flavia Hodges. A Dictionary of Surnames. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988. Print. (ISBN 0-19-211592-8).
  3. Burke, Sir Bernard. General Armory Of England, Scotland, Ireland and Wales. Ramsbury: Heraldry Today. Print.
  4. Bede, The Venerable. Historia Ecclesiatica Gentis Anglorum (The Ecclesiastical History Of the English People). Available through Internet Medieval Sourcebook the Fordham University Centre for Medieval Studies. Print.
  5. Passenger Lists of Vessels Arriving at Galveston Texas 1896-1951. National Archives Washington DC. Print.
  6. Bardsley, C.W. A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6).
  7. Best, Hugh. Debrett's Texas Peerage. New York: Coward-McCann, 1983. Print. (ISBN 069811244X).
  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. Skordas, Guest. Ed. The Early Settlers of Maryland an Index to Names or Immigrants Complied from Records of Land Patents 1633-1680 in the Hall of Records Annapolis, Maryland. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1968. Print.
  10. Le Patourel, John. The Norman Empire. New York: Oxford University Press, 1976. Print. (ISBN 0-19-822525-3).
  11. ...

The Mowbray Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Mowbray 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 12 July 2016 at 08:58.

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