Show ContentsWoolfolk History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The ancient and distinguished surname Woolfolk was first found in England. It is most commonly thought to be of Old English origin, deriving from the words "wull," meaning "wool," and "folc," meaning "people." Thus, it is likely that the first bearer of the surname was one who dealt in wool. Alternatively, it may be derived from "Woll," the name of many places in Dorset, Somerset, West Sussex, and West Surrey; in this instance, the name is derived from the Middle English word "woll," meaning "spring, stream," and the surname would have been first used to denote "folk living by the stream." Finally, the name may be traced to the parish of Woolford in Warwickshire.

Early Origins of the Woolfolk family

The surname Woolfolk was first found in the counties of Sussex and Surrey, in the form "Wolle." The earliest recorded bearer of the name was John de Wolle, who was listed in the Subsidy Rolls of Sussex in 1296. Henry atte Wolle was also recorded in Sussex in the year 1327. It is possible that the name appeared before these written records were compiled, and that other, even older branches of the family existed in England prior to the Norman conquest.

Early History of the Woolfolk family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Woolfolk research. Another 84 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1660, 1678 and 1697 are included under the topic Early Woolfolk History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Woolfolk Spelling Variations

Before English spelling was standardized a few hundred years ago, spelling variations of names were a common occurrence. Elements of Latin, French and other languages became incorporated into English through the Middle Ages, and name spellings changed even among the literate. The variations of the surname Woolfolk include Woolfolk, Wullfolk, Wolle, Wulle, Wollfolk and others.

Early Notables of the Woolfolk family

Notables of the family at this time include

  • Richard Woolfolk of Wales, who was the first known Woolfolk to have immigrated to America

Woolfolk Ranking

In the United States, the name Woolfolk is the 8,514th most popular surname with an estimated 2,487 people with that name. [1]

Ireland Migration of the Woolfolk family to Ireland

Some of the Woolfolk family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 63 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 Woolfolk migration to the United States +

A great wave of immigration to the New World was the result of the enormous political and religious disarray that struck England at that time. Families left for the New World in extremely large numbers. The long journey was the end of many immigrants and many more arrived sick and starving. Still, those who made it were rewarded with an opportunity far greater than they had known at home in England. These emigrant families went on to make significant contributions to these emerging colonies in which they settled. Some of the first North American settlers carried this name or one of its variants:

Woolfolk Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Richard Woolfolk, who emigrated from Wales to Gloucester County, Virginia in 1678
Woolfolk Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Parham Woolfolk, who settled in Kentucky during the mid-19th century

Contemporary Notables of the name Woolfolk (post 1700) +

  • Andrew Paul Woolfolk II (1950-2022), American saxophonist, longtime member of the band Earth, Wind & Fire, inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1999
  • Harold E. "Butch" Woolfolk (b. 1960), former American football running back and kick returner
  • Corey Woolfolk (b. 1983), American former soccer forward and manager
  • Andre Woolfolk (b. 1950), American flautist and percussionist
  • Andre Woolfolk (b. 1980), American NFL football cornerback
  • Aaron Woolfolk (b. 1969), American film director, screenwriter and producer
  • E Oscar Woolfolk (b. 1912), prominent American chemist
  • Josiah Pitts Woolfolk (b. 1894), novelist
  • Elliot Woolfolk Major (1864-1949), American lawyer and Democratic politician, 33rd Governor of Missouri (1913-1917), Attorney General of Missouri (1909-1913)

The Woolfolk 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: Sine Macula
Motto Translation: Without stain.

  1. "What are the 5,000 Most Common Last Names in the U.S.?"., on Facebook