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Blazons & Genealogy Notes

Sable a fess ermine a bend pean.

Origin, Meaning, Family History and Spillman Coat of Arms and Family Crest

Spillman Origin:

England, Germany

Origin of Spillman:

Listed as Spellman, Spillman, and Spileman, this is a surname which might be English, German or Irish. The English are a progress of the authentic German word “spellar” which represented a minister or composer – one who could spell. In this condition, the name is listed slightly as far back as the 11th century when Goduine filius Spilemanni (Godwine the son of Spilman), was listed on the rolls of the Abbey of Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk in 1095. In Germany, the first surname spelling was Spielmann, it also organized as Spelmann so that some English name bearer acquired from a German (Huguenot) emigrant of the 17th century and 18th centuries. In Ireland, it is still more complicated in that Spelman is a known Anglicization of O'Spealain, which means crop or harvest, similarly being an 18th-century import from England. The name was authentically organized only in Connacht but is now expand around the country. First Irish documentation is that of Elizabeth Spelman of Ballyhay, Cork from April 1782. In England, the common spelling is Spillman, Spellman presence limited enough. An Ancient example is Hierom Spilman who married Anne Burles at St Giles Church, Cripplegate, London on May 1629, while in November 1846, Elleanor Spellman at the age of 20, was a traveler on the ship New York, from Liverpool to New York. It is unclear whether she was English or Irish. Cardinal Spelman, Catholic Archbishop of New York (1889- 1972) was of Irish Origin.


Some common variations are: Spillmann, Spilleman, Spielllman, Speillman, Spilliman, Spillmane, Spillmanw, Spilman, Spllman, Spiellmann.


The surname Spillman was early organized in Norfolk where they held a family seat from Ancient times, some say after the Norman Invasion and the entrance of Duke William at Hastings in 1066 A.D.

The very first recorded spelling of the family was shown to be that William Spileman, dated 1167, in the pipe rolls of Hampshire. It was during the time of King Henry II who was known to be the “Builder of Churches” 1154 – 1189. The origin of surnames during this period became a necessity with the introduction of personal taxation. It came to be known as Poll Tax in England. Surnames all over the country began to develop, with unique and shocking spelling variations of the original one.

United States of America:

Individuals with the surname Spillman settled in the United States in three different centuries respectively in the 17th, 18th, and 19th. Some of the people with the name Spillman who settled in the United States in the 17th century included Thomas Spillman, who landed in Virginia in 1623 and John Spillman, who landed in Virginia 1663. Francis Spillman and Francis Spillman, who came in Maryland in the same year 1674.

People with the name Spillman who settled in the United States in the 18th century included William Spillman, who arrived in Virginia in 1701. Casper Spillman, Heinrich Spillman, Hanseli Spillman and Casper Spillman, these people came to Carolina in the same year 1734 in the 18th century.

F.H. Spillman, who arrived in Galveston, TX in 1850. Magdalena Spillman, at the age of 59, arrived in New York, NY in 1852. H. Spillman, who came in Texas in 1860 and Gustavus L. Spillman, who arrived in Indiana in 1891 in the 19th century.


People with the name Spillman who settled in the Canada in the 19th century included Edmond Spillman, who arrived in Ontario in 1871.

Here is the population distribution of the last name Spillman: United States 5,634; England 285; Argentina 105; New Zealand 9; Switzerland 2; Germany 3; Belgium 2; Australia 245; Canada 82; South Africa 91.

Notable People:

Ken Spillman is an Australian author who lived in Perth, Western Australia. He was famous as a prolific writer of books for children and young boys. His work has stretched in different types or kinds including poetry, sports writing, and literary assessments. His work also contains a large number of books relevant to visible features of Australian social history.

Mel Spillman is an American transferred clerk and cheater who sent properties of dead people to his accounts. He lived in San Antonio, Texas. In the 1970s he started to work as a clerk in Bexar Division of the courthouse.

William Jasper Spillman is considered to be the basic father of the agricultural business. Furthermore, he is best known for being the only American to study Mendel's laws of genetics independently.

Spillman Coat of Arms Meaning

The two main devices (symbols) in the Spillman blazon are the bend and fesse. The two main tinctures (colors) are pean and ermine.

Special patterns, of a distinctive shape are frequently used in heraldry and are know as furs, representing the cured skins of animals 1. Although they were originally derived from creatures such as the ermine (mink) and the squirrel the actual patterns have become highly stylised into simple geometric shapes 2. pean is a variant of ermine in which the field is sable (black) and the ermine spots or (gold).

Ermine is a very ancient pattern, and distinctive to observe. It was borne alone by John de Monfort, the Earl of Richmond and Duke of Brittany in the late 14th century 3 It has a long association with royalty and the nobility in general and hence represents “Dignity” wherever it is found 4. The ermine pattern is white with, typically, a three dots and a dart grouping representing the tail of the furred creature.5. The ermine spot is sometimes found alone as a special charge on the shield.

The bend is a distinctive part of the shield, frequently occuring and clearly visible from a distance – it is a broad band running from top left to bottom right 6. Indeed, so important is the bend that it was the subject of one of the earliest cases before the English Court of Chivalry; the famous case of 1390, Scrope vs Grosvenor had to decide which family were the rightful owners of Azure, a bend or (A blue shield, with yellow bend). 7. The bend is held in high honour and may signify “defence or protection” and often borne by those of high military rank 8.

The fesse (also found as fess) is one of the major ordinaries to found in heraldry, being a bold, broad, horizontal band across the centre of the shield. It may originally have arisen from the planks of which a wooden shield can be constructed, the centremost plank being painted a different colour 9. It is instantly recognisable as a symbol, for example the arms of COLEVILLE granted during the reign of Hery III are simply or, a fesse gules. With this clear association with the construction of the shield itself, Wade believes that the fesse can be taken to be associated with the military, as a “girdle of honour”.

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  • 1 Boutell’s Heraldry, J.P. Brooke-Little, Warne, (revised Edition) London 1970, P 28
  • 2 Understanding Signs & Symbols – Heraldry, S. Oliver & G. Croton, Quantum, London, 2013, P46-49
  • 3 A Complete Guide to Heraldry, A.C. Fox-Davies, Bonanza (re-print of 1909 Edition), New York, 1978, P69
  • 4 The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P39
  • 5 Boutell’s Heraldry, J.P. Brooke-Little, Warne, (revised Edition) London 1970, P 28
  • 6 Boutell’s Heraldry, J.P. Brooke-Little, Warne, (revised Edition) London 1970, P 39-40
  • 7 A Complete Guide to Heraldry, A.C. Fox-Davies, Bonanza (re-print of 1909 Edition), New York, 1978, P22
  • 8 The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P49
  • 9 A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:Fesse