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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright © 2000 - 2015

Where did the English Woolard family come from? What is the English Woolard family crest and coat of arms? When did the Woolard family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the Woolard family history?

The name Woolard arrived in England after the Norman Conquest of 1066. The name Woolard comes from the Norman given name Willard. This name is derived from the Germanic roots will, meaning desire, and heard, meaning strong or hard. [1]


Endless spelling variations are a prevailing characteristic of Norman surnames. Old and Middle English lacked any definite spelling rules, and the introduction of Norman French added an unfamiliar ingredient to the English linguistic stew. French and Latin, the languages of the court, also influenced spellings. Finally, Medieval scribes generally spelled words according to how they sounded, so one person was often referred to by different spellings in different documents. The name has been spelled Willard, Wilard, Viliard, Villiard, Wielard, Willardby, Willardsey, Willardsham, Willardstone and many more.

First found in east Kent and Sussex where they were Lords of the Manor of Eastbourne. The family were originally named Villiard, or Guillarrt, and were from Caen in Normandy in pre Conquest times. [2] In the Domesday Book they are recorded variously as Wielardus, Wilardus, and Wlward. [3] [4] Further speculation on the origin of this distinguished family name of the U.S.A., can be deduced from the Willard Memoir by Joseph Willard published in Boston Mass. in 1858. [4] Woollard is a small village on the River Chew in the Chew Valley in East Somerset. Some of the first records of the name include: Wihelardus de Trophil who was listed in the History of Northumberland in 1168 and Wilard de Pikeeden who was listed in the same source in 1227. The Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls of 1379 list Emayn Wylard. William Willarde was listed in Kent in 1602 and Nicholas Willard from Kent married Jane Coumber at Canterbury in 1690. [5]


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Woolard research. Another 223 words (16 lines of text) covering the years 1617, 1630, 1634, 1605, 1676, 1634, 1643, 1672, 1692, 1692, 1640, 1707 and 1701 are included under the topic Early Woolard History in all our PDF Extended History products.


Another 163 words (12 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Woolard Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.


To escape the political and religious persecution within England at the time, many English families left for the various British colonies abroad. The voyage was extremely difficult, though, and the cramped, dank ships caused many to arrive in the New World diseased and starving. But for those who made it, the trip was most often worth it. Many of the families who arrived went on to make valuable contributions to the emerging nations of Canada and the United States. An inquiry into the early roots of North American families reveals a number of immigrants bearing the name Woolard or a variant listed above:

Woolard Settlers in United States in the 17th Century

  • Ann Woolard, who landed in Virginia in 1650
  • George Woolard, who arrived in Virginia in 1650
  • William Woolard, who landed in Virginia in 1671

Woolard Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century

  • James Woolard, aged 23, a labourer, arrived in South Australia in 1856 aboard the ship "Fitzjames"


  • Kathryn Ann Woolard (b. 1950), American Professor of Anthropology at the University of California, San Diego
  • Edgar William Woolard (1899-1978), American meteorologist, mathematician and planetary scientist
  • Cathy Woolard (b. 1957), American politician, President of the Atlanta City Council (1997-2004)
  • Edgar S. Woolard Jr. (b. 1934), American businessman Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of DuPont from 1989 to 1995
  • Grant Woolard (b. 1985), American student cartoonist
  • Morgan Elizabeth Woolard (b. 1989), American model and beauty queen, Miss Oklahoma USA 2010
  • Jamal Woolard (b. 1975), American rapper and actor
  • Daniel Woolard (b. 1984), American soccer player
  • Mr. Charles Henry  Woolard (1863-1917), Canadian resident from Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada who survived the Halifax Explosion on 6th December 1917 but later died due to injuries


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  1. ^ Hanks, Patricia and Flavia Hodges, A Dictionary of Surnames. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988. Print. (ISBN 0-19-211592-8)
  2. ^ 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)
  3. ^ Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
  4. ^ Lowe, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  5. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)

Other References

  1. Burke, Sir Bernard. Burke's Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Landed Gentry: Including American Families with British Ancestry. (2 Volumes). London: Burke Publishing, 1939. Print.
  2. Holt, J.C. Ed. Domesday Studies. Woodbridge: Boydell, 1987. Print. (ISBN 0-85115-477-8).
  3. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  4. Passenger Lists of Vessels Arriving at Galveston Texas 1896-1951. National Archives Washington DC. Print.
  5. Thirsk, Joan. The Agrarian History of England and Wales. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press: 7 Volumes. Print.
  6. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  7. Shirley, Evelyn Philip. Noble and Gentle Men of England Or Notes Touching The Arms and Descendants of the Ancient Knightley and Gentle Houses of England Arranged in their Respective Counties 3rd Edition. Westminster: John Bowyer Nichols and Sons, 1866. Print.
  8. Bolton, Charles Knowles. Bolton's American Armory. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1964. Print.
  9. Filby, P. William and Mary K Meyer. Passenger and Immigration Lists Index in Four Volumes. Detroit: Gale Research, 1985. Print. (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8).
  10. Bede, The Venerable. Historia Ecclesiatica Gentis Anglorum (The Ecclesiastical History Of the English People). Available through Internet Medieval Sourcebook the Fordham University Centre for Medieval Studies. Print.
  11. ...

The Woolard Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Woolard Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

This page was last modified on 5 October 2015 at 13:14.

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