Stokes History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Stokes is one of the many names that the Normans brought with them when they conquered England in 1066. The Stokes family lived in Pembrokeshire. Their name, however, is a reference to Stock, near Caen, Normandy, the family's place of residence prior to the Norman Conquest of England in 1066.

Early Origins of the Stokes family

The surname Stokes was first found in Pembrokeshire where they held a family seat from early times. One of the first records of the names was Saint Simon Stock (c. 1165-1265), an English saint who was probably born in Aylesford England. In a vision, The Blessed Virgin Mary appeared to him and gave him the Carmelite habit, the Brown Scapular and promised that those who die wearing it will be saved.

The Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 include the following: Baldewin de Stoke in Suffolk; Mariota de Stoke in Huntingdonshire; Robert de Stokes in Oxfordshire; and Seman de Stokes in Northamptonshire. [1]

Peter Stokes (died 1399), was a Carmelite friar at Hitchin, Hertfordshire and later after studying at Oxford rose to become a doctor of divinity before 1382. During the religious troubles of that year Stokes acted as the representative of Archbishop Courtenay in the university. [2]

"Thomas Stokes, "armiger," and some, if not all, of the members of his family, which included four sons and twelve daughters, were buried in the church of Ashby Ledgers during the 15th century. Adrian Stokes by right of his wife owned the living of Tifiield in 1575." [3]

Early History of the Stokes family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Stokes research. Another 71 words (5 lines of text) covering the years 1180, 1220, 1569, 1626, 1591, 1669, 1590 and 1591 are included under the topic Early Stokes History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Stokes Spelling Variations

Before the advent of the printing press and the first dictionaries, the English language was not standardized. Sound was what guided spelling in the Middle Ages, so one person's name was often recorded under several variations during a single lifetime. Spelling variations were common, even among the names of the most literate people. Known variations of the Stokes family name include Stoke, Stokes, Stoaks, Stocks and others.

Early Notables of the Stokes family (pre 1700)

Another 50 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Stokes Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Stokes family to Ireland

Some of the Stokes family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 47 words (3 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Stokes migration to the United States +

To escape the political and religious chaos of this era, thousands of English families began to migrate to the New World in search of land and freedom from religious and political persecution. The passage was expensive and the ships were dark, crowded, and unsafe; however, those who made the voyage safely were encountered opportunities that were not available to them in their homeland. Many of the families that reached the New World at this time went on to make important contributions to the emerging nations of the United States and Canada. Research into various historical records has revealed some of first members of the Stokes family to immigrate North America:

Stokes Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Christopher Stokes who settled in Virginia in 1624
  • Christopher Stokes, who landed in Virginia in 1624 [4]
  • George Stokes, who settled in Barbados in 1634
  • Grace, and Eleanor Stokes, who settled in Boston in 1635
  • Grace Stokes, aged 20, who arrived in New England in 1635 [4]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Stokes Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Samuel Stokes, who arrived in North Carolina in 1701 [4]
  • Joseph Stokes, who landed in South Carolina in 1711 [4]
  • Eleanor Stokes, who landed in Boston, Massachusetts in 1767 [4]
Stokes Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Thomas B Stokes, aged 17, who landed in New York in 1812 [4]
  • Jos Stokes, who arrived in Charleston, South Carolina in 1825 [4]
  • Joseph Houghton Stokes, who arrived in New York in 1847 [4]
  • George Stokes, who arrived in Mississippi in 1850 [4]
  • John Stokes, who arrived in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1852 [4]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Canada Stokes migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Stokes Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century
  • Edward Stokes, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1750
Stokes Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • William Stokes, who arrived in Canada in 1841
  • Patrick Stokes, who landed in Halifax, Nova Scotia in 1843
  • Miss. Mary Stokes, aged 2 who immigrated to Canada, arriving at the Grosse Isle Quarantine Station in Quebec aboard the ship "Independence" departing from the port of Belfast, Ireland but died on Grosse Isle in August 1847 [5]

Australia Stokes migration to Australia +

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

Stokes Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Peter Stokes, English convict from Middlesex, who was transported aboard the "Ann" on August 1809, settling in New South Wales, Australia [6]
  • Edward Stokes, English convict from Shropshire, who was transported aboard the "Andromeda" on October 16, 1826, settling in Van Diemen's Land, Australia [7]
  • Mr. John Stokes, British convict who was convicted in Shropshire, England for 7 years, transported aboard the "Asia" on 19th November 1827, settling in New South Wales, Australia [8]
  • Mr. Henry Stokes, British Convict who was convicted in Monmouth, Wales for life, transported aboard the "Asia" on 20th July 1837, arriving in New South Wales, Australia [9]
  • Stanley Stokes, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Lloyds" in 1838 [10]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

New Zealand Stokes 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:

Stokes Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • J Stokes, who landed in Auckland, New Zealand in 1839
  • J M Stokes, who landed in Wellington, New Zealand in 1840 aboard the ship "Aurora"
  • Robert Stokes, who landed in Wellington, New Zealand in 1840 aboard the ship Cuba
  • James Milburn Stokes a doctor, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Aurora" in 1840
  • Robert Stokes, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Cuba" in 1840
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Contemporary Notables of the name Stokes (post 1700) +

  • Louis Stokes (1925-2015), American attorney and politician, Member of the U.S. House of Representatives (1993-1999)
  • Frederick A. Stokes (1857-1939), American publisher who founded Frederick A. Stokes, an American publishing company in 1890
  • Elizabeth Dilling Stokes (1894-1966), well-known American anti-communist and anti-war activist and writer in the 1930s and 1940s, which led to charges of "anti-Semitism" and "sedition" in the Great Sedition Trial of 1944
  • Shelly Stokes, American softball player
  • Henry Sewell Stokes (1808-1895), Cornish poet, the eldest son of Henry Stokes (d. 1832), proctor and notary at Gibraltar
  • Leslie Stokes, English playwright and BBC radio producer and director
  • Francis Martin Sewell Stokes (1902-1979), English novelist, biographer, playwright, screenwriter and broadcaster
  • Admiral John Lort Stokes RN (1811-1885), English officer in the Royal Navy who traveled extensively on HMS Beagle
  • Donald Gresham Stokes (1914-2008), Baron Stokes, an English industrialist, former chairman of Leyland Motors Ltd
  • Mr. Ian David Stokes M.B.E., British Captain for the Royal Regiment of Artillery was appointed Member of the Order of the British Empire on 17th June 2017
  • ... (Another 10 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Air New Zealand Flight 901
  • Mr. Alan Maxwell Stokes (1928-1979), New Zealander passenger, from Pakuranga, Auckland, New Zealand aboard the Air New Zealand Flight 901 for an Antarctic sightseeing flight when it flew into Mount Erebus; he died in the crash [11]
Halifax Explosion
  • Mr. John R  Stokes Sr. (1864-1917), Canadian resident from Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada who died in the explosion [12]
  • Mr. John Jr  Stokes (1897-1917), Canadian resident from Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada who died in the explosion [12]
  • Mrs. Eileen  Stokes (1898-1917), Canadian resident from Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada who survived the explosion but later died due to injuries [12]
HMS Hood
  • Mr. John E Stokes (b. 1901), English Able Seaman serving for the Royal Navy from Farnham, Surrey, England, who sailed into battle and died in the sinking [13]
HMS Repulse
  • Mr. John Leslie Stokes, British Colonel Sergeant, who sailed into battle on the HMS Repulse and survived the sinking [14]
HMS Royal Oak
  • Henry James Stokes (1908-1939), British Able Seaman with the Royal Navy aboard the HMS Royal Oak when she was torpedoed by U-47 and sunk; he died in the sinking [15]
  • Joseph Leonard Stokes (1918-1939), British Stoker 1st Class with the Royal Navy aboard the HMS Royal Oak when she was torpedoed by U-47 and sunk; he died in the sinking [15]
RMS Lusitania
  • Mr. George Edward Stokes, Canadian 2nd Class passenger from Victoria, British Columbia, Canada, who sailed aboard the RMS Lusitania and died in the sinking [16]
  • Master William Stokes, Canadian 2nd Class passenger from Victoria, British Columbia, Canada, who sailed aboard the RMS Lusitania and died in the sinking [16]
  • Mrs. Mabel Stokes, Canadian 2nd Class passenger from Victoria, British Columbia, Canada, who sailed aboard the RMS Lusitania and died in the sinking [16]
RMS Titanic
  • Mr. Philip Joseph Stokes (d. 1912), aged 25, English Second Class passenger from London, England who sailed aboard the RMS Titanic and died in the sinking and was recovered by CS Mackay-Bennett [17]


The Stokes 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: Fortis qui insons
Motto Translation: Innocent fortune.


Suggested Readings for the name Stokes +

  • 484 The Mills, Stokes, and Forrester Families of Primarily Greenville Co, S.C. by Lorene Burton Ambrose, The Stokes Family of Pitt County, N.C. by Taney Brazeal, The Andrews, Clapp, Stokes, Wright, Van Cleve Genealogies by Alfred S. Andrews.

  1. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  2. ^ Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print
  3. ^ Guppy, Henry Brougham, Homes of Family Names in Great Britain. 1890. Print.
  4. ^ 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)
  5. ^ 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. 56)
  6. ^ State Library of Queensland. (Retrieved 2016, October 27) Ann voyage to New South Wales, Australia in 1809 with 200 passengers. Retrieved from http://www.convictrecords.com.au/ships/ann/1809
  7. ^ State Library of Queensland. (Retrieved 2016, October 27) Andromeda voyage to Van Diemen's Land, Australia in 1826 with 147 passengers. Retrieved from http://www.convictrecords.com.au/ships/andromeda/1826
  8. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 8th January 2020). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/asia/1827
  9. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 7th February 2020). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/asia/1837
  10. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) LLOYDS from London 1838. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1838Lloyds.htm
  11. ^ Mount Erebus, Memorial, Roll of Remembrance (Retrieved 2018, February 21st). Retrieved from http://www.erebus.co.nz/memorialandawards/rollofremembrance.aspx
  12. ^ Halifax Explosion Book of Remembrance | Maritime Museum of the Atlantic. (Retrieved 2014, June 23) . Retrieved from https://maritimemuseum.novascotia.ca/what-see-do/halifax-explosion/halifax-explosion-book-remembrance
  13. ^ 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
  14. ^ HMS Repulse Crew members. (Retrieved 2014, April 9) . Retrieved from http://www.forcez-survivors.org.uk/biographies/listrepulsecrew.html
  15. ^ 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
  16. ^ Lusitania Passenger List - The Lusitania Resource. (Retrieved 2014, March 6) . Retrieved from http://www.rmslusitania.info/lusitania-passenger-list/
  17. ^ Titanic Passenger List - Titanic Facts. (Retrieved 2016, July 13) . Retrieved from http://www.titanicfacts.net/titanic-passenger-list.html


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