Whalebone History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
- Origins Available:
Whalebone is a name of ancient Norman origin. It arrived in England with the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Whalebone family lived in Lincolnshire. Their name is derived from the Old English word welle, meaning well, and the Old Norse word brunnr, meaning stream or spring, and indicates that the original bearer lived near a well by a stream or spring. 
The Domesday Book of 1086 has three listings: Welborne (Walebruna), Norfolk; Welbourne (Wellebrune), Lincolnshire; and Welburn (Wellebrune), North Yorkshire. 
Early Origins of the Whalebone family
The surname Whalebone was first found in Lincolnshire where they were Lords of the manor of Welbourn and conjecturally descended from a Norman noble, Robert Malet, who was granted the church and mill by King William the Conqueror in 1066. The ancestry of Robert goes back to Graville near Havre in Normandy in 990, where he was descended from Algar, the seventh Earl of Mercia. 
Early rolls gave a glimpse at the various spellings in use over the years: Walebrun was recorded in Lincolnshire c. 1155; Robert Walebrun was registered in the Subsidy Rolls for Sussex in 1296; and John Walebron was listed in the Subsidy Rolls for Sussex in 1327.  The Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 had one entry for the family, that of Hugh de Welleburn, Lincolnshire. 
Early History of the Whalebone family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Whalebone research. Another 42 words (3 lines of text) covering the years 1605, 1929, 1640, 1702, 1699, 1702 and 1697 are included under the topic Early Whalebone History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Whalebone 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 Whalebone 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 Whalebone include Welborne, Welborn, Welbourne, Welburn and others.
Early Notables of the Whalebone family (pre 1700)
Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Thomas Welbourne (Welbourn) (executed at York, 1 August 1605), an English Roman Catholic teacher, Catholic martyr, beatified in 1929. Thomas Wellborn (also: Welbourn, Welbourne, Wellbourne), (1640-1702), served as Captain in the King's Militia, and...
Another 41 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Whalebone Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Whalebone 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 Whalebone, or a variant listed above: Sam, Mathew, and Robert Welbourne settled in Virginia in 1652.
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- ^ Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
- ^ Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
- ^ 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)