Prescot History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The roots of the Anglo-Saxon name Prescot come from when the family resided near a priest's cottage. The surname is derived from the Old English elements preost, which meant priest, and cot, which meant cottage. This is a topographic surname; it is derived from a local geographical feature, instead of an already existing place-name. It may also denote employment at a priest's cottage. The Prescot name comes from having lived near a priest's cottage; it is derived from the Old English elements "preost," which meant "priest," and "cot," which meant "cottage." As such, this name is classed as a topographic surname; that is, one that is derived from a local geographical feature, rather than from an already existing place-name.

Early Origins of the Prescot family

The surname Prescot was first found in Lancashire at Prescot, a market-town and parish, and the head of a union, in the hundred of West Derby. [1] While there are also parishes in Oxfordshire, and Gloucestershire, it is the Lancashire location that this family hails. "The Prescotts take their name from a Lancashire parish; they are also represented in Cheshire." [2] "The Lancashire town gave rise to a family that still flourishes in its local directories." [3]

While most sources agree on the place of origin of the family and their first stronghold, ironically the first listing of the family used an ancient family spelling in the Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 as (Heredes) de Prestecote in Oxfordshire. [3] Later, Kirby's Quest listed Adam le Prestecote in Somerset, 1 Edward III (during the first year of Edward III's reign.) [4]

Early History of the Prescot family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Prescot research. Another 60 words (4 lines of text) covering the years 1789, 1858, 1726 and 1815 are included under the topic Early Prescot History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Prescot Spelling Variations

The English language only became standardized in the last few centuries; therefore, spelling variations are common among early Anglo-Saxon names. As the form of the English language changed, even the spelling of literate people's names evolved. Prescot has been recorded under many different variations, including Prescott, Presscot, Presscot, Prescot, Prescop and others.

Early Notables of the Prescot family (pre 1700)

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


United States Prescot migration to the United States +

For many English families, the political and religious disarray that shrouded England made the far away New World an attractive prospect. On cramped disease-ridden ships, thousands migrated to those British colonies that would eventually become Canada and the United States. Those hardy settlers that survived the journey often went on to make important contributions to the emerging nations in which they landed. Analysis of immigration records indicates that some of the first North American immigrants bore the name Prescot or a variant listed above:

Prescot Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • John Prescot, who settled in Virginia in 1653
  • Jon Prescot, who landed in Virginia in 1653 [5]

New Zealand Prescot 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:

Prescot Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Thomas Prescot, aged 38, a bootmaker, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Rooparell" in 1874


The Prescot Motto +

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: Lux mihi Deus
Motto Translation: God is my light.


  1. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  2. ^ Guppy, Henry Brougham, Homes of Family Names in Great Britain. 1890. Print.
  3. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  4. ^ Dickinson, F.H., Kirby's Quest for Somerset of 16th of Edward the 3rd London: Harrison and Sons, Printers in Ordinary to Her Majesty, St, Martin's Lane, 1889. Print.
  5. ^ 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)


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