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

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

The Odle name has descended through the generations from the ancient Anglo-Saxon culture. Their name comes from having lived in Odell, or Woodhill, which were in Bedsfordshire. The surname Odle comes from the Old English words wad, and hyll, which mean woad (a plant collected for the blue dye produced by its leaves), and hill.

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Only recently has spelling become standardized in the English language. As the English language evolved in the Middle Ages, the spelling of names changed also. The name Odle has undergone many spelling variations, including Odell, O'Dell, Odehull, Wodehull, Wodhull and others.

First found in Bedfordshire (Old English: Bedanfordscir), located in Southeast-central England, formerly part of the Anglo-Saxon kingdom of Mercia, where they held a family seat from early times and their first records appeared on the early census rolls taken by the early Kings of Britain to determine the rate of taxation of their subjects.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Odle research. Another 308 words(22 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Odle History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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More information is included under the topic Early Odle Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Some of the Odle family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 109 words(8 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.

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To escape the unstable social climate in England of this time, many families boarded ships for the New World with the hope of finding land, opportunity, and greater religious and political freedom. Although the voyages were expensive, crowded, and difficult, those families that arrived often found greater opportunities and freedoms than they could have experienced at home. Many of those families went on to make significant contributions to the rapidly developing colonies in which they settled. Early North American records indicate many people bearing the name Odle were among those contributors:

Odle Settlers in United States in the 17th Century


  • Peter Odle, who arrived in Virginia in 1657

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  • Robert C. Odle Jr., American lawyer, former Assistant Secretary of the U.S. Department of Energy
  • Lou Odle, American football coach for the Sterling Warriors 1940 to 1941
  • Alan Odle (1888-1948), English illustrator, husband of the English novelist Dorothy Richardson


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  1. Shirley, Evelyn Philip. Noble and Gentle Men of England Or Notes Touching The Arms and Descendants of the Ancient Knightley and Gentle Houses of England Arranged in their Respective Counties 3rd Edition. Westminster: John Bowyer Nichols and Sons, 1866. Print.
  2. Foster, Joseph. Dictionary of Heraldry Feudal Coats of Arms and Pedigrees. London: Bracken Books, 1989. Print. (ISBN 1-85170-309-8).
  3. Filby, P. William and Mary K Meyer. Passenger and Immigration Lists Index in Four Volumes. Detroit: Gale Research, 1985. Print. (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8).
  4. Thirsk, Joan. The Agrarian History of England and Wales. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press: 7 Volumes. Print.
  5. Zieber, Eugene. Heraldry in America. Philadelphia: Genealogical Publishing Co. Print.
  6. Best, Hugh. Debrett's Texas Peerage. New York: Coward-McCann, 1983. Print. (ISBN 069811244X).
  7. Browning, Charles H. Americans of Royal Descent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  8. Hinde, Thomas Ed. The Domesday Book England's Heritage Then and Now. Surrey: Colour Library Books, 1995. Print. (ISBN 1-85833-440-3).
  9. Magnusson, Magnus. Chambers Biographical Dictionary 5th edition. Edinburgh: W & R Chambers, 1990. Print.
  10. Burke, Sir Bernard. Burke's Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Landed Gentry: Including American Families with British Ancestry. (2 Volumes). London: Burke Publishing, 1939. Print.
  11. ...

The Odle Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Odle 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 24 February 2015 at 23:08.

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