Show ContentsPillow History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Early Origins of the Pillow family

The surname Pillow was first found in Lincolnshire where they held a family seat as Lords of the Manor. After the Battle of Hastings in 1066, William, Duke of Normandy, having prevailed over King Harold, granted most of Britain to his many victorious Barons. It was not uncommon to find a Baron, or a Bishop, with 60 or more Lordships scattered throughout the country. These he gave to his sons, nephews and other junior lines of his family and they became known as under-tenants. They adopted the Norman system of surnames which identified the under-tenant with his holdings so as to distinguish him from the senior stem of the family. After many rebellious wars between his Barons, Duke William, commissioned a census of all England to determine in 1086, settling once and for all, who held which land. He called the census the Domesday Book, [1] indicating that those holders registered would hold the land until the end of time. Hence, conjecturally, the surname is descended from a tenant of lands in Lincolnshire who was recorded in the Domesday Book census of 1086. The name was firstly noble house of Pilotte of Chantrans in Bourgogne.

Early History of the Pillow family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Pillow research. Another 132 words (9 lines of text) covering the years 1379, 1510, 1550 and 1600 are included under the topic Early Pillow History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Pillow Spelling Variations

Spelling variations of this family name include: Pillett, Piller, Pillet, Pillay, Pillette, Pillot, Pillow, Pilotte, Pilley and many more.

Early Notables of the Pillow family

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

Pillow Ranking

In the United States, the name Pillow is the 7,655th most popular surname with an estimated 2,487 people with that name. [2]

United States Pillow migration to the United States +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Pillow Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Hannah Pillow, who arrived in Virginia in 1713 [3]
Pillow Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • William Hy Pillow, who landed in New York in 1834 [3]
Pillow Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • Mr. Abraham Pillow, (b. 1883), aged 21, Cornish labourer, from Hayle, Cornwall, UK travelling aboard the ship "Germanic" arriving at Ellis Island, New York on 11th October 1904 en route to Hazleton, Pennsylvania, USA [4]
  • Mr. James Pillow, (b. 1876), aged 28, Cornish miner, from St Erth, Cornwall, UK travelling aboard the ship "Philadelphia" arriving at Ellis Island, New York on 1st October 1904 en route to Stockton, California, USA [4]

Contemporary Notables of the name Pillow (post 1700) +

  • Herbert Raymond Pillow (1937-2023), American country music singer, music publisher, and artists and repertoire representative who had 18 singles on the Billboard country songs chart
  • Theodore Eugene Pillow (b. 1951), American Democratic Party politician, Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Iowa, 1972 [5]
  • Raymond Homer Pillow (1853-1913), American Republican politician, Physician; Delegate to Republican National Convention from Pennsylvania, 1900 [5]
  • Ernest Pillow, American politician, U.S. Attorney for the Middle District of Tennessee, 1885-89; Speaker of the Tennessee State Senate, 1895-97 [5]
  • David Pillow, American Democratic Party politician, Candidate for Texas State House of Representatives 94th District, 2006 [5]

  1. Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
  2. "What are the 5,000 Most Common Last Names in the U.S.?".,
  3. 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)
  4. Cornwall Online Parish Clerks. (Retrieved 3rd May 2018). Retrieved from
  5. The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2016, January 15) . Retrieved from on Facebook