Show ContentsWakeley History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Wakeley is a name of ancient Norman origin. It arrived in England with the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Wakeley family lived in Hertfordshire, at the manor of Wakely.

Early Origins of the Wakeley family

The surname Wakeley was first found in Hertfordshire where they held a family seat from very ancient times, conjecturally the family were descended from Ralph of Wakely, a Norman noble, who held his lands from Count Allan and was thus reflected in the Domesday Book Survey of 1086 A.D.

Early History of the Wakeley family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Wakeley research. Another 67 words (5 lines of text) covering the year 1600 is included under the topic Early Wakeley History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Wakeley 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 Wakeley 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 Wakeley include Wakley, Wakeley, Wakely, Wakelie, Wakelee, Weakley, Wakerley and many more.

Early Notables of the Wakeley family

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was

  • Thomas Wakeley of Ballyburley

Ireland Migration of the Wakeley family to Ireland

Some of the Wakeley family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 50 words (4 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

United States Wakeley migration to the United States +

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 Wakeley, or a variant listed above:

Wakeley Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Mr. Thomas Wakeley, who arrived in Dorchester, Massachusetts in 1633 aboard the ship "Recovery" [1]
  • Thomas Wakeley, who arrived in Hingham, Massachusetts in 1635 [2]
  • Edward Wakeley, who landed in Virginia in 1658 [2]
Wakeley Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • John Wakeley, who arrived in Philadelphia in 1872

Australia Wakeley migration to Australia +

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

Wakeley Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century

Contemporary Notables of the name Wakeley (post 1700) +

  • Solmous "Solomon" Wakeley (1794-1867), American pioneering Wisconsin legislator, he served in the Wisconsin State Assembly in 1855 and 1857
  • Eleazer Wakeley (1822-1912), American politician and jurist in Nebraska and Wisconsin, he served in the Wisconsin State Senate 1851-1855 and the Wisconsin State Assembly 1866-1867
  • James "Jimmy" Clarence Wakeley (1914-1982), American country-Western singer and actor
  • Solomon Wakeley, American Republican politician, Member of Wisconsin State Assembly from Walworth County, 1855, 1857 [4]
  • Eleazer Wakeley (1822-1912), American Democratic Party politician, Member of Wisconsin Territorial House of Representatives, 1847-48; Member of Wisconsin State Senate, 1852-55; Justice of Nebraska Territorial Supreme Court, 1857-61 [4]
  • Sir Nicholas Jeremy Wakeley (b. 1957), 3rd Baronet of Liss, County Hampshire, English peer
  • Sir John Cecil Nicholson Wakeley (1926-2012), 2nd Baronet of Liss, County Hampshire, English peer
  • Thomas Wakeley (1795-1862), English surgeon
  • Amanda Wakeley (b. 1962), British fashion designer
  • Sir Cecil Pembrey Grey Wakeley (1892-1979), 1st Baronet of Liss, County Hampshire, British surgeon, founder of the Annals of the Royal College of Surgeons of England, President of the College from 1949-1954
  • ... (Another 1 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

  1. Pilgrim Ship's of 1600's Retrieved January 6th 2023, retrieved from
  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. Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 30th October 2020). Retrieved from
  4. The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, November 11) . Retrieved from on Facebook