Seals History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The Atlantic Ocean to the north and west and the English Channel to the south borders Cornwall, the homeland to the Seals family name. Even though the usage of surnames was common during the Middle Ages, all English people were known only by a single name in early times. The manner in which hereditary surnames arose is interesting. Local surnames are derived from where the original bearer lived, was born, or held land. The Seals family originally lived in the parish of Seal which had various locations in England including the counties of Northumberland, Leicester, Surrey and Kent.

However, the name could have originated from a variety of sources. It could be one who worked at the hall from the Old English word "sele," [1] or, perhaps, "dweller by the sallow copse" from the Old English "siele," or "sele." [2]

Early Origins of the Seals family

The surname Seals was first found in Devon where Ralph de la Sele was listed in the Pipe Rolls of 1168. Roger Sele was also listed in the Pipe Rolls for Norfolk in 1198. [2]

"The Seals of the Derby district may hail originally from Seal, a Leicestershire parish close to the Derbyshire border." [3]

Today Seals could also be a Bengali Hindu Brahmin family name which literally means "the quality of being devoted."

Early History of the Seals family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Seals research. Another 67 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Seals History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Seals Spelling Variations

Cornish surnames are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations. The frequent changes in surnames are due to the fact that the Old and Middle English languages lacked definite spelling rules. The official court languages, which were Latin and French, were also influential on the spelling of a surname. Since the spelling of surnames was rarely consistent in medieval times, and scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded rather than adhering to any specific spelling rules, it was common to find the same individual referred to with different spellings of their surname in the ancient chronicles. Moreover, a large number of foreign names were brought into England, which accelerated and accentuated the alterations to the spelling of various surnames. Lastly, spelling variations often resulted from the linguistic differences between the people of Cornwall and the rest of England. The Cornish spoke a unique Brythonic Celtic language which was first recorded in written documents during the 10th century. However, they became increasingly Anglicized, and Cornish became extinct as a spoken language in 1777, although it has been revived by Cornish patriots in the modern era. The name has been spelled Seal, Seale, Seel, Sealey, Sealy, Seally, Sealley and others.

Early Notables of the Seals family (pre 1700)

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

Seals Ranking

In the United States, the name Seals is the 1,425th most popular surname with an estimated 22,383 people with that name. [4]

Ireland Migration of the Seals family to Ireland

Some of the Seals family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. More information about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

United States Seals migration to the United States +

The records on immigrants and ships' passengers show a number of people bearing the name Seals:

Seals Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Benjamin Seals, who arrived in Mississippi in 1853 [5]
Seals Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • George Seals, aged 28, who immigrated to the United States from Aberdeen, Scotland, in 1909
  • Herbert Seals, aged 24, who landed in America from Wallsend, England, in 1913
  • Della M. Seals, aged 30, who settled in America from Miltown Malbay, Ireland, in 1914
  • John Seals, aged 31, who immigrated to America, in 1920
  • Alfred Seals, aged 38, who landed in America, in 1921
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Contemporary Notables of the name Seals (post 1700) +

  • Bruce A. Seals (1953-2020), American ABA and NBA basketball player who played from 1973 to 1984
  • Raymond Seals (b. 1965), American former NFL football defensive end who played from 1989 to 1997
  • Leon Seals Jr. (b. 1964), American former NFL football defensive end who played from 1987 to 1992
  • George Edward Seals (b. 1942), American former NFL football offensive and defensive lineman who played from 1964 to 1973
  • David Seals (b. 1947), American writer, known for his 1979 novel, The Powwow Highway which was made into the film of the same name
  • Daniel "Dan" Joseph Seals (b. 1971), American business consultant and politician
  • Danny Wayland "Dan" Seals (1948-2009), American musician, younger brother of Jim Seals, first gained fame as "England Dan", in the duo "England Dan & John Ford Coley," who were best known for "I'd Really Love to See You Tonight"
  • Frank "Son" Seals (1942-2004), American blues guitarist and singer
  • Brady Seals (b. 1969), American country music artist, cousin of Jim Seals
  • James "Jim" Seals (b. 1941), American musician, half of the duo Seals and Crofts, the top selling band of the 70s who were best known for "Summer Breeze" (1972), "Diamond Girl" (1973), and "Get Closer" (1976)
  • ... (Another 3 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Suggested Readings for the name Seals +

  • The Seals Family History by Elmer D. Scalf.

  1. ^ Smith, Eldson Coles, New Dictionary of American Family Names New York: Harper & Row, 1956. Print
  2. ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  3. ^ Guppy, Henry Brougham, Homes of Family Names in Great Britain. 1890. Print.
  4. ^
  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) on Facebook