Owens History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

A product of the ancient Brythonic Celts of Wales, the name Owens, is from the Welsh personal name Owen or Owain. The Old Welsh forms of this name were Ouen and Ouein and were borrowed from the Latin name Eugenius. This is in turn derived from the Greek name Eugenios, which means well-born or noble. The name was recorded in Wales as early as 926 AD, when Uwen Wenta Cyning was noted.

Early Origins of the Owens family

The surname Owens was first found in Montgomeryshire (Welsh: Sir Drefaldwyn), located in mid-Eastern Wales, one of thirteen historic counties, and anciently the medieval kingdom of Powys Wenwynwyn, where they held a family seat from very ancient times, some say well before the Norman Conquest and the arrival of Duke William at Hastings in 1066 A.D.

From these early beginnings, the family reached throughout early England. "George Welsh Owen, Esq. of Tiverton in Devonshire, is impropriator of the great and small tithes, both of the [parish of Egloskerry] and Tremaine, [Cornwall] which belonged formerly to the priory of Launceston. In Egloskerry there are several estates, by which no small tithes are paid. From the tithes of this parish the sum of £5 per annum is paid to the incumbent curate, and sixteen shillings to the Prince of Wales's audit." [1]

Early History of the Owens family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Owens research. Another 127 words (9 lines of text) covering the years 1169, 1661, 1624, 1640, 1600, 1666, 1616, 1683, 1608, 1678, 1645, 1678, 1645, 1698, 1676, 1679, 1664, 1622, 1692, 1659, 1647, 1639, 1700 and are included under the topic Early Owens History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Owens Spelling Variations

Although there are comparatively few Welsh surnames, they have a great many spelling variations. Variations of Welsh names began almost immediately after their acceptance within Welsh society. In the Middle Ages, it was up to priests and the few other people that recorded names in official documents to decide how to spell the names that they heard. Variations that occurred because of improper recording increased dramatically as the names were later transliterated into English. The Brythonic Celtic language of Wales, known by natives as Cymraeg, featured many highly inflected sounds that could not be properly captured by the English language. Spelling variations were, however, also carried out according to an individual's design: a branch loyalty within the family, a religious adherence, or even patriotic affiliations were all indicated by the particular variation of one's name. The spelling variations of the name Owens have included Owen, Owens, MacOwen, Owenson, Owenby, Ownby and others.

Early Notables of the Owens family (pre 1700)

Prominent amongst the family during the late Middle Ages was Thomas Owen (died 1661), an English politician who sat in the House of Commons between 1624 and 1640, supporter of the Royalist cause in the English Civil War; Sir John Owen (1600-1666), a Welsh Royalist officer during the English Civil War; John Owen (1616-1683), an English Nonconformist church leader, theologian and administrator at the University of Oxford; Arthur Owen (ca.1608-1678), a Welsh politician who sat in...
Another 75 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Owens Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Owens family to Ireland

Some of the Owens family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 59 words (4 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Owens migration to the United States +

Many people from Wales joined the general migration to North America in the 19th and 20th centuries, searching for land, work, and freedom. Like the many other immigrants from the British Isles, they made a significant contribution to the development of Canada and the United States. The Welsh and their descendents added a rich cultural tradition to the newly developed towns, cities, and villages. An investigation of the immigration and passenger lists has revealed a number of people bearing the name Owens:

Owens Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Walter Owens, who arrived in Virginia in 1650 [2]
  • Timothy Owens, who arrived in Maryland in 1662 [2]
  • John Owens, who landed in Maryland in 1665 [2]
  • Ann Owens, who landed in Maryland in 1674 [2]
  • Joane Owens, who arrived in Virginia in 1699 [2]
Owens Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Owen Owens, who landed in Virginia in 1712 [2]
  • Joan Owens, who landed in Virginia in 1716 [2]
  • Edward Owens, who arrived in America in 1764 [2]
  • Hugh Owens, who landed in Charleston, South Carolina in 1772 [2]
  • Simon Owens, who landed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1773 [2]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Owens Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • David Owens, who landed in America in 1802 [2]
  • Alexander Owens, aged 37, who arrived in New York in 1812 [2]
  • Richard Owens, aged 27, who arrived in New York in 1812 [2]
  • Thomas Owens, aged 26, who landed in New York in 1812 [2]
  • William Owens, aged 26, who landed in Kennebunk, Me in 1830 [2]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Canada Owens migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Owens Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century
  • Mr. John Owens U.E., (Owen) who settled in Saint John, New Brunswick c. 1784 [3]
Owens Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • James Owens, aged 25, a labourer, who arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick aboard the ship "Sea Horse" in 1833
  • Sarah Owens, aged 21, who arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick aboard the ship "Sea Horse" in 1833
  • Mr. Beck Owens, aged 15 who was emigrating through Grosse Isle Quarantine Station, Quebec aboard the ship "Naomi" departing 15th June 1847 from Liverpool, England; the ship arrived on 10th August 1847 but he died on board [4]
  • Miss Bridget Owens, aged 4 who was emigrating through Grosse Isle Quarantine Station, Quebec aboard the ship "Ganges" departing 16th June 1847 from Liverpool, England; the ship arrived on 21st August 1847 but she died on board [4]
  • Mr. John Owens, aged 1 who was emigrating through Grosse Isle Quarantine Station, Quebec aboard the ship "Eliza Caroline" departing 3rd May 1847 from Liverpool, England; the ship arrived on 14th June 1847 but he died on board [4]

Australia Owens migration to Australia +

Emigration to Australia followed the First Fleets of convicts, tradespeople and early settlers. Early immigrants include:

Owens Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • John Owens, a bricklayer, who arrived in New South Wales, Australia sometime between 1825 and 1832
  • Samuel George Owens, English convict from London, who was transported aboard the "Albion" on May 29, 1828, settling in New South Wales, Australia [5]
  • Mary Owens, English convict from Lancaster, who was transported aboard the "Arab" on December 14, 1835, settling in Van Diemen's Land, Australia [6]
  • Mr. John Owens, Welsh convict who was convicted in Carmarthen, Carmarthenshire, Wales for 15 years , transported aboard the "Barossa" on 8th December 1839, arriving in New South Wales, Australia [7]
  • Bridget Owens, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Baboo" in 1840 [8]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

New Zealand Owens 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:

Owens Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Mr. Roger Owens, British settler as part of the 8th Detachment of the Royal New Zealand Fencibles travelling from Gravesend aboard the ship "Oriental Queen" arriving in Auckland, New Zealand on 18th September 1849 [9]
  • Mrs. Mary Ann Owens, British settler travelling from Gravesend aboard the ship "Oriental Queen" arriving in Auckland, New Zealand on 18th September 1849 [9]
  • Miss Ann Owens, (b. 1839), aged 23, Irish domestic servant from County Tipperary, travelling from London aboard the ship "Mersey" arriving in Lyttelton, Christchurch, South Island, New Zealand on 25th September 1862 [10]
  • Mr. W. Owens, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "Wild Duck" arriving in Wellington, New Zealand on 20th December 1867 [9]
  • Mr. William Owens, (b. 1847), aged 20, British domestic servant travelling from London aboard the ship " Lancashire Witch" sailing to Auckland and Lyttelton, New Zealand on 29th July 1867 [10]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Contemporary Notables of the name Owens (post 1700) +

  • Walter Owens (1933-2020), American pitcher and outfielder who played in Negro League Baseball for the Detroit Stars (1953–1955)
  • Charles Owens (1932-2017), American PGA professional golfer who had 4 professional wins
  • Wyatt Owens, American Democrat politician, Alternate Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Alabama, 1956 [11]
  • Y. J. P. Owens, American politician, Delegate to South Carolina State Constitutional Convention from Laurens County, 1868 [11]
  • William W. Owens, American politician, Mayor of Logan, Utah, 1950-58 [11]
  • Wilma B. Owens, American Republican politician, Alternate Delegate to Republican National Convention from New Jersey, 1944, 1948, 1952, 1956 [11]
  • William L. Owens, American Democrat politician, U.S. Representative from New York 23rd District; Elected 2009 [11]
  • William H. Owens, American politician, Member of Pennsylvania State House of Representatives from Luzerne County, 1907-09 [11]
  • William F. Owens (b. 1950), American Republican politician, Member of Colorado State House of Representatives, 1982-88; Colorado State Treasurer, 1995-99; Governor of Colorado, 1999- [11]
  • William F. Owens, American politician, Member of Maryland State House of Delegates from Anne Arundel County, 1880 [11]
  • ... (Another 139 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Arrow Air Flight 1285
  • Mr. Gregory Allen Owens (b. 1963), American Private from Louisville, Kentucky, USA who died in the crash [12]
HMAS Sydney II
HMS Hood
  • Mr. George E M Owens (b. 1908), Welsh Lieutenant-Commander serving for the Royal Navy from Ryle, Wales, who sailed into battle and died in the sinking [14]
HMS Prince of Wales
  • Mr. Owens, British Corporal, who sailed into battle on the HMS Prince of Wales and survived as he was evacuated before the sinking [15]
HMS Royal Oak
  • William Owens, British Marine with the Royal Marine aboard the HMS Royal Oak when she was torpedoed by U-47 and sunk; he survived the sinking [16]
  • Peter H. Owens, British Cadet with the Royal Navy aboard the HMS Royal Oak when she was torpedoed by U-47 and sunk; he survived the sinking [16]
Pan Am Flight 103 (Lockerbie)
  • Martha Owens (1944-1988), American Passenger from Cherry Hill, New Jersey, America, who flew aboard the Pan Am Flight 103 from Frankfurt to Detroit, known as the Lockerbie bombing in 1988 and died [17]
  • Sarah Rebecca Owens (1974-1988), American Passenger from Cherry Hill, New Jersey, America, who flew aboard the Pan Am Flight 103 from Frankfurt to Detroit, known as the Lockerbie bombing in 1988 and died [17]
  • Laura Abigail Owens (1980-1988), American Passenger from Cherry Hill, New Jersey, America, who flew aboard the Pan Am Flight 103 from Frankfurt to Detroit, known as the Lockerbie bombing in 1988 and died [17]
  • Robert Plack Owens (1943-1988), American Passenger from Cherry Hill, New Jersey, America, who flew aboard the Pan Am Flight 103 from Frankfurt to Detroit, known as the Lockerbie bombing in 1988 and died [17]
RMS Lusitania
  • Mr. Owen Owens, English Able-Bodied Seaman from Kirkdale, Liverpool, England, who worked aboard the RMS Lusitania and died in the sinking [18]
  • Mr. Richard Owens, English Engineering Storekeeper from Liverpool, England, who worked aboard the RMS Lusitania and died in the sinking [18]
  • Mrs. Cecelia Mildred Owens, Welsh 2nd Class passenger residing in Ellwood City, Pennsylvania, USA returning to Swansea, Wales, who sailed aboard the RMS Lusitania and survived the sinking by escaping on an swamped collapsible [19]
  • Mr. Patrick Owens, American 3rd Class passenger from St. Louis, Missouri, USA, who sailed aboard the RMS Lusitania and died in the sinking [19]
  • Master Reginald Owens, American 2nd Class passenger from Ellwood City, Pennsylvania, USA, who sailed aboard the RMS Lusitania and died in the sinking [19]
  • ... (Another 1 entries are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
USS Arizona
  • Mr. Richard Allen Owens, American Storekeeper Second Class from Colorado, USA working aboard the ship "USS Arizona" when she sunk during the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on 7th December 1941, he died in the sinking [20]


Suggested Readings for the name Owens +

  • 119 A Fair and Happy Land by William A. Owens.

  1. ^ Hutchins, Fortescue, The History of Cornwall, from the Earliest Records and Traditions to the Present Time. London: William Penaluna, 1824. Print
  2. ^ Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
  3. ^ Rubincam, Milton. The Old United Empire Loyalists List. Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc, 1976. (Originally published as; United Empire Loyalists. The Centennial of the Settlement of Upper Canada. Rose Publishing Company, 1885.) ISBN 0-8063-0331-X
  4. ^ Charbonneau, André, and Doris Drolet-Dubé. A Register of Deceased Persons at Sea and on Grosse Île in 1847. The Minister of Canadian Heritage, 1997. ISBN: 0-660-198/1-1997E (p. 92)
  5. ^ State Library of Queensland. (Retrieved 2014, November 24) Albion voyage to New South Wales, Australia in 1828 with 192 passengers. Retrieved from http://www.convictrecords.com.au/ships/albion/1828
  6. ^ State Library of Queensland. (Retrieved 2015, January 8) Arab voyage to Van Diemen's Land, Australia in 1835 with 132 passengers. Retrieved from http://www.convictrecords.com.au/ships/arab/1835
  7. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 24th September 2020). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/barossa
  8. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) BABOO 1840. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1840Baboo.htm
  9. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 26th March 2019). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html
  10. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 17th October 2018). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html
  11. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2016, January 26) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html
  12. ^ American War Memorials - Flight 1285. (Retrieved 2016, August 24) . Retrieved from http://www.uswarmemorials.org/html/monument_details.php?SiteID=317&MemID=550
  13. ^ HMAS Sydney II, Finding Sydney Foundation - Roll of Honour. (Retrieved 2014, April 24) . Retrieved from http://www.findingsydney.com/roll.asp
  14. ^ H.M.S. Hood Association-Battle Cruiser Hood: Crew Information - H.M.S. Hood Rolls of Honour, Men Lost in the Sinking of H.M.S. Hood, 24th May 1941. (Retrieved 2016, July 15) . Retrieved from http://www.hmshood.com/crew/memorial/roh_24may41.htm
  15. ^ HMS Prince of Wales Crew members. (Retrieved 2014, April 9) . Retrieved from http://www.forcez-survivors.org.uk/biographies/listprincecrew.html
  16. ^ Ships hit by U-boats crew list HMS Royal Oak (08) - (Retrieved 2018 February, 9th) - retrieved from https://uboat.net/allies/merchants/crews/ship68.html
  17. ^ Pan Am Flight 103's victims: A list of those killed 25 years ago | syracuse.com. (Retrieved 2014, April 9) . Retrieved from http://www.syracuse.com/news/index.ssf/2013/12/pan_am_flight_103s_victims_a_list_of_those_killed_25_years_ago.html
  18. ^ Lusitania Passenger List - The Lusitania Resource. (Retrieved 2014, March 7) . Retrieved from http://www.rmslusitania.info/lusitania-passenger-list/
  19. ^ Lusitania Passenger List - The Lusitania Resource. (Retrieved 2014, March 6) . Retrieved from http://www.rmslusitania.info/lusitania-passenger-list/
  20. ^ Pearl Harbour: USS Arizona Casualties List Pearl Harbour December 7, 1941. (Retrieved 2018, July 31st). Retrieved from http://pearl-harbor.com/arizona/casualtylist.html


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