Wilken History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Wilken is a name of ancient Norman origin. It arrived in England with the Norman Conquest of 1066. Wilken is a name that comes from the Norman personal name William, which is derived from the words will, meaning resolution and helm, meaning armed.

Early Origins of the Wilken family

The surname Wilken was first found in Glamorganshire where they held a family seat from early times. They were descended from Robert de Wintona, one of twelve knights who came into Glamorgan with Robert Fitzhamon, a Norman noble, in 1066. Fitzhamon was Sheriff of Kent and founder of Tewkesbury.

Early History of the Wilken family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Wilken research. Another 119 words (8 lines of text) covering the years 1558, 1614, 1672, 1668, 1625, 1626, 1699, 1618, 1685, 1745, 1601, 1603, 1614 and 1672 are included under the topic Early Wilken History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Wilken Spelling Variations

Before the advent of the printing press and the first dictionaries, the English language was not standardized. Sound was what guided spelling in the Middle Ages, so one person's name was often recorded under several variations during a single lifetime. Spelling variations were common, even among the names of the most literate people. Known variations of the Wilken family name include Wilkins, Wilkin, Wilkines, Wilkyn, Wilking and others.

Early Notables of the Wilken family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was John Wilkins FRS (1614-1672), an English clergyman, natural philosopher and author, founder of the Invisible College and one of the founders of the Royal Society, Bishop of Chester from 1668 until his death. Thomas Wilkins (1625 or 1626-1699), was a Welsh cleric and antiquarian; and George Wilkins (died 1618), was an English dramatist and pamphleteer best known for his probable collaboration with Shakespeare on the play Pericles, Prince of Tyre. An inn-keeper by profession, he may have been involved in criminal activities. David Wilkins (1685-1745), was an English...
Another 93 words (7 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Wilken Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Wilken migration to the United States +

To escape the political and religious chaos of this era, thousands of English families began to migrate to the New World in search of land and freedom from religious and political persecution. The passage was expensive and the ships were dark, crowded, and unsafe; however, those who made the voyage safely were encountered opportunities that were not available to them in their homeland. Many of the families that reached the New World at this time went on to make important contributions to the emerging nations of the United States and Canada. Research into various historical records has revealed some of first members of the Wilken family to immigrate North America:

Wilken Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Fra Wilken, who arrived in Virginia in 1648 [1]
Wilken Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Adolphus Christian Wilken, aged 41, who arrived in St Louis, Missouri in 1842 [1]
  • Carl Wilken, who landed in Peru in 1845 [1]
  • Joh Leon Wilken, who arrived in Texas in 1845 [1]
  • F T G Wilken, who landed in New York, NY in 1850 [1]
  • Franz Wilken, who landed in New York, NY in 1850 [1]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)


The Wilken 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: Estote prudentes
Motto Translation: Be ye prudent.


  1. ^ 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)


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