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The CRIPPEN - CRIPPIN Connection



Welcome to my website. This is largely a One-Name Family History web-site which aims to encourage the connection of individuals who have an interest, however small in the names CRIPPEN and CRIPPIN. The exchange of information is welcomed as part of this overall aim.

How it all came about

My interest in Genealogy sprang from a degree of frustration; probably one of the more unusual reasons for delving into one’s Family History. During my early working life, as a teenager and young person, it was not uncommon to be asked "Any relation?". I knew of course that they were referring to the infamous Doctor Hawley Harvey CRIPPEN, who had been convicted of murdering his wife. But I didn’t know the answer! Was I related? There are still occasions when I make a new contact that eyebrows are raised or a comment is made. At least now I have a comprehensive answer to give although I still don’t know if I am………"Any relation".

The title of this site is quite deliberate as there seem to be many unconnected branches of these family names and many unanswered questions.

Are the names CRIPPEN and CRIPPIN two completely different families, without connection?

Am I or are you connected to the infamous murderer Doctor Hawley Harvey CRIPPEN?

Name Origin – P H Reaney & R M Wilson

The Dictionary of British Surnames by P.H. Reaney and R.M. Wilson gives two likely origins of the names, these are:

CRISPIN. The patron saint of shoemakers, martyred at Soissons c285 AD.

CRISPINUS. The Latin for the nickname ‘curly’ haired.

A more detailed description of these can be found here.

Blazon Of Arms For Crispin

Barry of eight argent and gules, a bordure engrailed sable.

Crest:    A seven headed hydra vert.

Motto:    Dum clarum rectum teneum. - While I hold to glory let me hold to right.

Name Variations

In the United Kingdom, USA and generally across the World, there are currently two common ways of spelling the surname: CRIPPEN and CRIPPIN.

This has not always been the case and, probably because many individuals were unable to write, phonetic spelling was the norm. This gave rise to a variety of options that can be seen below.






















In addition to CRIPPEN & CRIPPIN, the Dictionary of British Surnames also links CRISPIN, CHRISPIN, and CREPIN together under the same origin. To date I have found no links or corruption to connect the basic CRIPPEN or CRIPPIN with CRISPIN.
In the USA there are further links with the names GRIPPEN and GRIPPEN and this can be seen on the web-site.

Where the name has and does occur now can be seen below.


From the origin of the name, according to P. H. Reaney, there are two Saints, CRISPIN and CRISPIANUS or CRISPINIAN.

St Crispin’s Day is 25th October which was immortalised in William Shakespeare’s Henry V.

For more information on these look at the Saints.

Occupations and Notoriety

Within the UK family, we have over time, covered a wide spectrum of work in addition to being Saintly! There are also at least two notable US subjects.

Greengrocer (Many)

Local Government Officer

Post Office Overseer


Minister of Religion (CofE)

Homeopathic Doctor (US)

Fruiterer (Many)

Income Tax Inspector

Colliery Manager

Signwriter (2)

Environmental Health Officer

Police Officer


Astronaut (US)

Vehicle Technician


Environmental Benefactor (Canada)

Music Hall Entertainers



Circus Somersault Rider

And of course we have our darker side!!

Convicted Murderer

Convict deported to Australia

Crippen Regional Park

This regional park was established in 1983 through the purchase of the lands from a Mr. Crippen. Part of the agreement was that the Park would bear his name. Located on Bowen Island in the Greater Vancouver area of British Columbia, Canada, Crippen regional park is 240 hectares (600 acre).

These lands were once part of the 1000 acre Union Steamship Company Estates (USCE) which operated between the 1920's and the 1940's. USCE was a popular vacation resort for many years. After World War II, the popularity of the resort declined and was wrapped up in the 1950's. The main part of Union Steamship business was water-based transportation along the coast of British Columbia.

The USCE lands were bought and sold several times before they were acquired by Mr. Crippen. Over the years, about 400 acres were subdivided off and developed primarily for housing, but also some other uses as well, including school, seniors housing, and police station. Mr. Crippen's primary interests were engineering and land development.

I am very grateful to Greg Paris and staff of the Greater Vancouver Regional District Parks Department for providing a wealth of useful information.

For more information and location maps go to:

Robert (Bob) L. Crippen – Astronaut

Robert Crippen was spacecraft commander of STS-7, the second flight for the Orbiter Challenger, June 18-24 1983. This was the first mission with a 5-person crew which included Rick Hauck (pilot), and three mission specialists, John Fabian, Sally Ride, and Norman Thagard. Sally Ride is the only British Female Astronaut.

For more information on Robert Crippen go to:

Locations of the names in the UK & Worldwide

Historically, in England, there are four areas where concentrations of the surnames occur. These appear distinct for two reasons.

  1. The name CRIPPEN is found in and around Canterbury, Kent and Central London, a distance of approximately 60 miles and
  2. The name CRIPPIN is found in Lancashire and Shropshire.

The earliest records have been taken from the LDS IGI and can be seen in the table below.

Canterbury, Kent


St George the Martyr



St Giles, Cripplegate

Atherton, Lancashire



Shropshire villages to the South East of Shrewsbury


Much Wenlock


In addition to these English locations, family name connections can be found in Canada, the USA and Australia. A number of these are being followed up.

According to, currently listed on the United Kingdom Registers of Electors:



Records Searched and Sources Consulted

 English General Registry Office indexes at the Family Records Centre, London: - Births, Marriages and Deaths from 1837 to 1998.

 English national index of Wills (formerly at Somerset House, now in Kingsway):
from 1858 to 1998.

 British National Census 1841 – 1891, selective Counties listed here.

 LDS CD, broad coverage of 1881 nationally thanks to LDS Church.

 International Genealogical Index published by LDS Church and currently available online at as well as British Vital Data (indexes published 1999 by LDS on CD)

 Commonwealth War Graves Commission online database at

 Surnames of nearly 20,000 death notices extracted from the "New Zealand Herald" at

 Registry of World War II information about the graves and memorials of more than 116,000 Canadians and Newfoundlanders - Canadian Virtual War Memorial at

 National Register of Archives database can be found at

 Alphabetical index of physicians and surgeons licensed by the archbishop of canterbury, 1535-1775

 Executions in England from 1606 to 1895:

Links to other sites

From here you can go to a number of other web-sites which are for family history or the names CRIPPEN or CRIPPIN. Click on the picture or hyperlink.


Kent FHS

Sussex FHG


Cyndi’s List



If you know of other sites with an interest in the names CRIPPEN & CRIPPIN,
please let me know by e-mail at

Contacts with a direct interest in the names CRIPPEN & CRIPPIN

John Crippen


Len & Janice Peak


Mike Longworth


John Ramsdale


Alan Holden


Allen Sumner


Gerrie Freeland


Elaine Killick


Ralph Cummins


Daphne Dobie


Originally created November, 2000, this page was last updated Tuesday, January 09, 2001.

© John Crippen, 2000

Please send comments, enquiries etc. to



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