Show ContentsSylvester History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Early Origins of the Sylvester family

The surname Sylvester was first found in Essex, but the earliest record of the name was Sylvester, a medieval Bishop of Worcester (1216-1218.)

Early History of the Sylvester family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Sylvester research. Another 102 words (7 lines of text) covering the years 1086, 1296, 1563, 1618, 1652, 1722, 1636 and 1708 are included under the topic Early Sylvester History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Sylvester Spelling Variations

Spelling variations of this family name include: Silvester, Sylvester, Silvestre and others.

Early Notables of the Sylvester family (pre 1700)

Notable among the family at this time was Daniel Silvester, Advocate; Joshua Sylvester (1563-1618), an English poet; and John Silvester (1652-1722) an English blacksmith at the Tower of London who held the Lordship of...
Another 33 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Sylvester Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Sylvester Ranking

In the United States, the name Sylvester is the 1,537th most popular surname with an estimated 19,896 people with that name. [1]

United States Sylvester migration to the United States +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Sylvester Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Richard Sylvester, who arrived in Weymouth, Massachusetts in 1630 [2]
  • John Sylvester, who landed in Maryland in 1651-1658 [2]
Sylvester Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • S Sylvester, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1850 [2]
  • Christian Sylvester, aged 67, who arrived in New York, NY in 1850 [2]
  • Mr. Sylvester, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1851 [2]
  • Charles A Sylvester, who landed in Arkansas in 1891 [2]
Sylvester Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • Ralph Howard Sylvester, who landed in Wisconsin in 1918 [2]

Australia Sylvester migration to Australia +

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

Sylvester Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Mr. John Sylvester, English convict who was convicted in York, Yorkshire, England for 20 years, transported aboard the "Edwin Fox" on 24th August 1858, arriving in Western Australia, Australia

Contemporary Notables of the name Sylvester (post 1700) +

  • Robin Sylvester (1950-2022), English musician from Hampstead, London, England who was best known as a member of the American band RatDog
  • William L. "Bill" Sylvester (1928-2022), American football player and coach and college athletics administrator, head football coach at Butler University in Indianapolis, Indiana from 1970 to 1984
  • Rick Sylvester (b. 1942), American stuntman, best known for his BASE jump using skis and a Union Flag parachute from Mount Asgard in Canada for the James Bond movie The Spy Who Loved Me in July 1976
  • Albert Hale Sylvester (1871-1944), American pioneer surveyor, explorer, and forest supervisor, best known as the discoverer, explorer of The Enchantments
  • William Sylvester (1922-1995), American television and film actor, perhaps best known for his role as Dr. Heywood Floyd in Stanley Kubrick's 2001 A Space Odyssey (1968)
  • Sherry Sylvester, American political worker and journalist
  • Michael Sylvester (1951-1997), American opera-singer
  • Harold Sylvester (b. 1949), American film and television actor
  • Dean Sylvester (b. 1972), American NHL hockey player
  • Robin Sylvester (b. 1950), English musician from Hampstead, London, best known for his ongoing work with RatDog
  • ... (Another 6 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

HMS Hood
  • Mr. James Sylvester (b. 1921), English Ordinary Telegraphist serving for the Royal Navy from Grimsby, Lincolnshire, England, who sailed into battle and died in the HMS Hood sinking [3]
HMS Royal Oak
  • Reginald G. Sylvester, British Petty Officer with the Royal Navy aboard the HMS Royal Oak (1939) when she was torpedoed by U-47 and sunk; he survived the sinking [4]

  1. "What are the 5,000 Most Common Last Names in the U.S.?".,
  2. 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)
  3. 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
  4. Ships hit by U-boats crew list HMS Royal Oak (08) - (Retrieved 2018 February, 9th) - retrieved from on Facebook