Voak History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
The name Voak reached English shores for the first time with the ancestors of the Voak family as they migrated following the Norman Conquest of 1066. The name Voak is based on the Norman personal name Fulco. The line of this name descends from the noble house of Fulco Nerra, who held the title of Count of Anjou, Normandy.  Guido Fitz-Fulco of Normandy was listed in the Magni Rotuli Scaccarii Normanniae (1180-1195.)
Early Origins of the Voak family
The surname Voak was first found in Norfolk where they were granted lands by William de Warrene. The first confirmed record of the family was Folco or Fulco who was listed in the Domesday Book of 1086.  Rotuli Curiae Regis rolls list Robert, Geoffry, Theobald, William F. Fulco in England, 1199.
The mix of forename and surname entries continued for some time as the Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 lists Folkes (without surname) in Cambridgeshire; John Folke in Cambridgeshire; and Matilda Folkis in Buckinghamshire. 
The ffolkes variant was first coined by Sir Martin Browne ffolkes, 1st Baronet, FRS (1749-1821.) He was born Martin Folkes but chose to use the "ffolkes" spelling later in life. His descendants continued the tradition.
Early History of the Voak family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Voak research. Another 101 words (7 lines of text) covering the years 1653, 1685, 1596, 1662, 1644, 1652, 1638, 1710, 1690, 1765, 1690, 1754 and 1690 are included under the topic Early Voak History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Voak 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 Voak 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 Voak include Folke, Folk, Folkes, Fulke, Fooke, Fooks, Foolk, Fowke and many more.
Early Notables of the Voak family (pre 1700)
Outstanding amongst the family at this time was John Fowke (c. 1596-1662), an English merchant and politician, Sheriff of London in 1644 and Lord Mayor of London in 1652; Phineas Fowke, M.D. (1638-1710), an English physician from Bishop Burton, Yorkshire; and Lieutenant General Thomas Fowke (ca. 1690-1765)...
Another 46 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Voak Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Voak family to Ireland
Some of the Voak family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 43 words (3 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Voak 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:
Voak Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
- Charles Joseph Voak, aged 13, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Collingwood" in 1875
- Margaret Voak, aged 34, a laundress, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Collingwood" in 1875
- Bridget Voak, aged 17, a servant, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Collingwood" in 1875
- Margaret Voak, aged 8, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Collingwood" in 1875
- William Henry Voak, aged 6, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Collingwood" in 1875
Related Stories +
The Voak 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: Qui sera sera
Motto Translation: Whatever will be.
- ^ The Norman People and Their Existing Descendants in the British Dominions and the United States Of America. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0636-X)
- ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
- ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)