Show ContentsWindle History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Early Origins of the Windle family

The surname Windle was first found in Lancashire at Windle with Hardshaw, a township, in the parish and union of Prescot, hundred of West Derby. "Before the reign of John, Windhull gave name to a family, of whom was Edusa, widow of Alan de Windhull, who obtained from that king a summons for her dower against Alan de Windhull, son of the former." [1]

By the reign of Edward III., the manor was held by William Boteler, but there is no record as to why the manor was lost. Another source shows in the year 1201, Alan de Windhull held estates at Windle.

The Manor of Skelmerdale in Lancashire proved to reveal some interesting details about the family. According to the Domesday Book, it was originally held by Uctred, who also held Dalton and Uplitherland. It was later part of the forest fee, held by the Gernet family.

Later, "there had been a sub-infeudation of the manor in favour of Alan de Windle, for in 1202 Edusa his widow claimed dower in this among other manors, which she released to Alan's son Alan, upon an assignment of her dower here and in other lands." [2] The Windle manor passed, like Windle itself, to the Burnhulls and Gerards by the 15th century.

Early History of the Windle family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Windle research. Another 89 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1455 and 1487 are included under the topic Early Windle History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Windle Spelling Variations

Flemish surnames are characterized by a large number of spelling variations. One reason for this is that medieval English lacked definite spelling rules. The spellings of surnames were also influenced by the official court languages, which were French and Latin. Names were rarely spelled consistently in medieval times. Scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded, rather than adhering to specific spelling rules, and people often had their names registered in several different forms throughout their lives. One of the greatest reasons for change is the linguistic uniqueness of the Flemish settlers in England, who spoke a language closely related to Dutch. The pronunciation and spelling of Flemish names were often altered to suit the tastes of English-speaking people. In many cases, the first, final, or middle syllables of surnames were eliminated. The name has been spelled Windell, Windle, Windhull, Wyndel, Wyndell, Wyndle, Wyndhull, Windles, Wyndells and many more.

Early Notables of the Windle family (pre 1700)

More information is included under the topic Early Windle Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Windle Ranking

In the United States, the name Windle is the 8,516th most popular surname with an estimated 2,487 people with that name. [3]

United States Windle migration to the United States +

An inquiry into the early roots of North American families reveals a number of immigrants bearing the name Windle or a variant listed above:

Windle Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Thomas Windle, who landed in Maryland in 1669 [4]
Windle Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Mathias Windle, who arrived in Pennsylvania in 1745 [4]
  • Francis Windle, who arrived in America in 1764 [4]

Canada Windle migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Windle Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • George Windle, who landed in Esquimalt, British Columbia in 1862

Australia Windle migration to Australia +

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

Windle Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Mr. Joseph Windle, (b. 1806), aged 16, English convict who was convicted in West Riding, Yorkshire, England for 7 years for burglary, transported aboard the "Eliza" on 13th July 1822, arriving in New South Wales, Australia [5]

New Zealand Windle 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:

Windle Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Nicholas Windle, aged 25, a farm labourer, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Rakaia" in 1878
  • John Windle, aged 20, a farm labourer, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Rakaia" in 1878
  • Miss Johanna Windle, (b. 1858), aged 25, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "Victory " arriving in Invercargill, Southland, South Island, New Zealand on 23rd December 1883 [6]
  • Miss Mary Windle, (b. 1860), aged 23, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "Victory " arriving in Invercargill, Southland, South Island, New Zealand on 23rd December 1883 [6]
  • Mr. William Windle, (b. 1863), aged 20, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "Westland" arriving in Hawke's Bay, Napier, North Island, New Zealand in 1883 [6]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Contemporary Notables of the name Windle (post 1700) +

  • W. Butler Windle, American Republican politician, Common pleas court judge in Pennsylvania 15th District, 1927-29 [7]
  • Murray N. Windle, American politician, Mayor of Chillicothe, Missouri, 1939-43 [7]
  • Edwin Windle, American Democratic Party politician, Alternate Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Maryland, 1944 [7]
  • D. T. Windle, American Democratic Party politician, Candidate for Missouri State House of Representatives from Greene County, 1944 [7]
  • Willis Brewer Windle (1904-1981), American Major League Baseball for the Pittsburgh Pirates in the late 1920s
  • Jeanette Windle, American writer of children's and thriller novels
  • Janice Woods Windle, American author from Texas, best known for her True Women series
  • Ms. Angela Elizabeth Windle O.B.E., British Team Leader for Child Protection, Safeguarding and Family Law Team at Department for Education, was appointed Officer of the Order of the British Empire on 29th December 2018 for services to Children’s Social Care and to the community in Sheffield [8]
  • Alan Hardwick Windle FRS (b. 1942), British material scientist, Chair of Materials Science at Cambridge University
  • Robert George "Bob" Windle (b. 1944), Australian five-time gold, two-time silver and three-time bronze medalist freestyle swimmer

USS Arizona
  • Mr. Robert England Windle, American Private First Class from Illinois, USA working aboard the ship "USS Arizona" when she sunk during the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on 7th December 1941, he died in the sinking [9]

  1. Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  2. 'Townships: Scarisbrick', in A History of the County of Lancaster: Volume 3, ed. William Farrer and J Brownbill (London, 1907), pp. 265-276. British History Online [accessed 21 January 2017].
  3. "What are the 5,000 Most Common Last Names in the U.S.?".,
  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 15th February 2022). Retrieved from
  6. New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 26th March 2019). Retrieved from
  7. The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2016, January 26) . Retrieved from
  8. "Birthday and New Year Honours Lists (1940 to 2019)." Issue 62507, 28 December 2018 | London Gazette, The Gazette, Dec. 2018,
  9. Pearl Harbour: USS Arizona Casualties List Pearl Harbour December 7, 1941. (Retrieved 2018, July 31st). Retrieved from on Facebook