Weddell History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The surname Weddell comes from the place named Wedale, in the parish of Stow, near Edinburgh. As such it is a habitation name, a category of surnames derived from pre-existing names for towns, villages, parishes, or farmsteads.

Early Origins of the Weddell family

The surname Weddell was first found in Midlothian, where they had held territories at Wedale in the parish of Stow from ancient times. [1]

Most sources agree in this origin, but one claims the name was English having derived from Odell, a parish in Bedfordshire. "For proof, v. Odell. Waddle is a natural variant, but seems confined to America." [2] This researcher noted that the Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 included a listing for Robert de Wadhulle, Bedfordshire.

But let's return to Scotland where the lion's share of the family claim descent. "The earliest known bearer of the name is Adam de Wedale, 'an outlaw of the King of Scots land,' who appears in 1204. Stephen de Wee ale witnessed a charter of the lands of Swaynystoun to the Hospital of Soltre, c. 1221-24, and Thomas de Wedal was canon of St. Andrews 1280. Laurence de Wedale of Roxburghshire rendered homage in 1296. His seal bears an eight-rayed figure and S' Lavrenci d' Vedal" [3]

On this last entry, we must explain the significance of "rendered homage in 1296." King Edward I of England conquered much of lowland Scotland in 1296 and confiscated the lands. To retrieve your lands, you had to "render homage" to him, thereby acknowledging him as the rightful king.

"Symone de Wedale, [was] abbot of Holyrood, Edinburgh, between 1296-1327, as Symon de Wedehale was consecrated bishop of Galloway in 1327. Adam de Wedale, monk of Newbotyl, was witness in proceedings against the Knights Templars in 1309, and Roger de Wedale was canon of Dunblane, 1312, and in 1321 prebendary of Murthlach." [3]

Early History of the Weddell family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Weddell research. Another 330 words (24 lines of text) covering the years 1344, 1359, 1370, 1372, 1395, 1405, 1400, 1424, 1421, 1505, 1555, 1557, 1567, 1610, 1583, 1613, 1672, 1682, 1793, 1725, 1372, 1600, 1583, 1642, 1617, 1621 and are included under the topic Early Weddell History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Weddell Spelling Variations

Spelling variations of this family name include: Waddel, Waddell, Waddle, Weddel, Weddell, Weddle and many more.

Early Notables of the Weddell family (pre 1700)

Notable among the family at this time was John Weddell (1583-1642), sea-captain who in 1617 was master's mate of the East India Company's ship Dragon. "In April 1621 he sailed from England as captain of the Jonas, with three other...
Another 40 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Weddell Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Weddell family to Ireland

Some of the Weddell family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 51 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 Weddell migration to the United States +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Weddell Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Austin Weddell, who arrived in Georgia in 1735 [4]
Weddell Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Archibald Weddell, who landed in America in 1807 [4]

Australia Weddell migration to Australia +

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

Weddell Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Mr. Thomas Weddell, English convict who was convicted in Southampton, Hampshire, England for 20 years, transported aboard the "Equestrian" on 30th June 1845, arriving in Tasmania (Van Diemen's Island) [5]
  • Alex. Weddell, aged 26, a labourer, who arrived in South Australia in 1852 aboard the ship "Anglia" [6]

Contemporary Notables of the name Weddell (post 1700) +

  • Alexander W. Weddell (1876-1948), American diplomat; ambassador to Argentina and Spain
  • Alan Weddell, American college football coach
  • Monty Ousley Weddell, American Republican politician, Candidate for Texas State House of Representatives 104th District, 1996, 1998, 2000 [7]
  • Alexander Wilbourne Weddell (1876-1948), American politician, U.S. Ambassador to Argentina, 1933-38; Spain, 1939-42 [7]
  • James Weddell (1787-1834), English navigator and Antarctic explorer; eponym of Weddell Sea, Weddell Island, Weddell Glacier, and Weddell seal
  • Hugh Algernon Weddell (1819-1877), English botanist


  1. ^ Smith, Eldson Coles, New Dictionary of American Family Names New York: Harper & Row, 1956. Print
  2. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  3. ^ Black, George F., The Surnames of Scotland Their Origin, Meaning and History. New York: New York Public Library, 1946. Print. (ISBN 0-87104-172-3)
  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. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 9th May 2022). https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/equestrian
  6. ^ South Australian Register Tuesday 3 February 1852. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) ANGLIA 1852. Retrieved http://www.theshipslist.com/ships/australia/anglia1852.shtml
  7. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2016, January 19) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html


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