Sowter History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The Picts, an ancient Scottish tribe, were the ancestors of the first person to use the name Sowter. It was a name for a cobbler. The name is derived from the Old English word soutere, which in turn comes from the Old Norse word sutare, which means shoemaker or cobbler.

Early Origins of the Sowter family

The surname Sowter was first found in Angus (Gaelic: Aonghas), part of the Tayside region of northeastern Scotland, and present day Council Area of Angus, formerly known as Forfar or Forfarshire, where they held a family seat from very ancient times, where Colin, son of Angus Souter, held lands in 1264.

Early History of the Sowter family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Sowter research. Another 139 words (10 lines of text) covering the years 1327, 1375, 1422, 1438, and 1663 are included under the topic Early Sowter History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Sowter Spelling Variations

Repeated and inaccurate translation of Scottish names from Gaelic to English and back resulted in a wide variety of spelling variations with single names. Sowter has appeared Souter, Suter, Sutar, Souttar, Soutar, Sutter, Shuter and many more.

Early Notables of the Sowter family (pre 1700)

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


United States Sowter migration to the United States +

Many Scottish families suffered enormous hardships and were compelled to leave their country of birth. They traveled to Ireland and Australia, but mostly to the colonies of North America, where many found the freedom and opportunity they sought. It was not without a fight, though, as many were forced to stand up and defend their freedom in the American War of Independence. The ancestors of these Scots abroad have rediscovered their heritage in the last century through the Clan societies and other organizations that have sprung up across North America. Immigration and passenger ship lists show some important early immigrants bearing the name Sowter:

Sowter Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Nicholas Sowter, who settled in Philadelphia in 1733

Australia Sowter migration to Australia +

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

Sowter Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Robert Sowter, English convict from Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk, who was transported aboard the "Anson" on September 23, 1843, settling in Van Diemen's Land, Australia [1]

Contemporary Notables of the name Sowter (post 1700) +

  • Unwin Sowter (1839-1910), English corn factor and miller and cricketer


  1. ^ State Library of Queensland. (Retrieved 2015, January 8) Anson voyage to Van Diemen's Land, Australia in 1843 with 499 passengers. Retrieved from http://www.convictrecords.com.au/ships/anson/1843


Houseofnames.com on Facebook