Stokeslay History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
Stokeslay is a name that first reached England following the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Stokeslay 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 Stokeslay family
The surname Stokeslay 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. 
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. 
"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." 
Early History of the Stokeslay family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Stokeslay 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 Stokeslay History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Stokeslay Spelling Variations
It is only in the last few hundred years that the English language has been standardized. For that reason, Anglo-Norman surnames like Stokeslay are characterized by many spelling variations. Scribes and monks in the Middle Ages spelled names they sounded, so it is common to find several variations that refer to a single person. As the English language changed and incorporated elements of other European languages such as Norman French and Latin, even literate people regularly changed the spelling of their names. The variations of the name Stokeslay include Stoke, Stokes, Stoaks, Stocks and others.
Early Notables of the Stokeslay family (pre 1700)
Another 50 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Stokeslay Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Stokeslay family to Ireland
Some of the Stokeslay 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.
Migration of the Stokeslay family
Faced with the chaos present in England at that time, many English families looked towards the open frontiers of the New World with its opportunities to escape oppression and starvation. People migrated to North America, as well as Australia and Ireland in droves, paying exorbitant rates for passages in cramped, unsafe ships. Many of the settlers did not make the long passage alive, but those who did see the shores of North America were welcomed with great opportunity. Many of the families that came from England went on to make essential contributions to the emerging nations of Canada and the United States. Some of the first immigrants to cross the Atlantic and come to North America carried the name Stokeslay, or a variant listed above: Christopher Stokes who settled in Virginia in 1624; Grace, and Eleanor Stokes settled in Boston in 1635; George Stokes settled in Barbados in 1634; Lance and Robert Stokes settled in Virginia in 1637..
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The Stokeslay 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.
- ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
- ^ Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print
- ^ Guppy, Henry Brougham, Homes of Family Names in Great Britain. 1890. Print.