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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright 2000 - 2015

Where did the English Murrell family come from? What is the English Murrell family crest and coat of arms? When did the Murrell family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the Murrell family history?

The Norman Conquest of England of 1066 added many new elements to the already vibrant culture. Among these were thousands of new names. The Murrell name is derived from the medieval given name Morel. The name was originally derived from the name More or Moore a nickname for a someone of dark complexion. This name stems from the Old French word Moor, meaning black man.


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 Morrell, Morel, Morrel, Morrall, Morrill, Murrill and others.

First found in Norfolk where they held a family seat from very early times and were granted lands by Duke William of Normandy, their liege Lord, for their distinguished assistance at the Battle of Hastings in 1066 A.D.


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Murrell research. Another 225 words(16 lines of text) covering the years 1620, 1704, 1795, 1839, 1788 and 1880 are included under the topic Early Murrell History in all our PDF Extended History products.


Another 107 words(8 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Murrell Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.


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 Murrell or a variant listed above:

Murrell Settlers in United States in the 17th Century

  • Gregory Murrell, who landed in Maryland in 1650
  • George Murrell, who arrived in Maryland in 1658

Murrell Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • Robert Murrell, aged 25, landed in New York in 1812
  • Samuel Murrell, who arrived in Charleston, South Carolina in 1813
  • John Murrell, who arrived in Texas in 1830

Murrell Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century

  • John Murrell, aged 19, a farm labourer, arrived in South Australia in 1850 aboard the ship "Constance"

Murrell Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century

  • Robert Murrell, aged 19, a labourer, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "La Hogue" in 1874
  • Sarah Murrell, aged 21, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "La Hogue" in 1874


  • Chris Murrell, American jazz and gospel singer
  • Willie Vernon Murrell (b. 1941), American former professional basketball player
  • John Murrell OC, AOE (b. 1945), American-born Canadian playwright, recipient of the Governor General's Performing Arts Award for Lifetime Artistic Achievement (2008)
  • Marques Murrell (b. 1985), American football linebacker
  • Adrian Byran Murrell (b. 1970), former professional American NFL football running back
  • Harry Robert Murrell (b. 1879), English cricketer
  • Scott Murrell, English rugby league player
  • Sharon Murrell, Canadian politician
  • Frank Edric Joseph Murrell (1874-1931), British Liberal Party politician


  • Lyle, Murrell, Nancy, Morton Genealogy by Gladys Elizabeth Odil Bracy.

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: Bono animo esto
Motto Translation: Be of Good Courage


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  1. Holt, J.C. Ed. Domesday Studies. Woodbridge: Boydell, 1987. Print. (ISBN 0-85115-477-8).
  2. Innes, Thomas and Learney. The Tartans of the Clans and Families of Scotland 1st Edition. Edinburgh: W & A. K. Johnston Limited, 1938. Print.
  3. Burke, Sir Bernard. Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Peerage and Baronetage, The Privy Council, Knightage and Compainonage. London: Burke Publishing, 1921. Print.
  4. Mills, A.D. Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4).
  5. Virkus, Frederick A. Ed. Immigrant Ancestors A List of 2,500 Immigrants to America Before 1750. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1964. Print.
  6. 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).
  7. Crispin, M. Jackson and Leonce Mary. Falaise Roll Recording Prominent Companions of William Duke of Normandy at the Conquest of England. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  8. Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin . Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8).
  9. Bullock, L.G. Historical Map of England and Wales. Edinburgh: Bartholomew and Son, 1971. Print.
  10. Humble, Richard. The Fall of Saxon England. New York: Barnes and Noble, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-88029-987-8).
  11. ...

The Murrell Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Murrell 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 17 July 2015 at 20:30.

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