Shanks Family History
Family Tree
Surname Message
  • Shank
  • Shanks
  • Shenk
Welcome to our Shanks family heritage!
The pattern you see in the title and background was found to be that of the tartan of the clan of Galloway of Scotland to which the Shanks family belonged.    Traveling a few hundred years back into history, this is the "hunting" pattern that the kilts, scarves, etc. would have been made of, thus identifying members of this clan.

Coat of Arms: Red shield, on a silver horizontal stripe, a hawk's lure, at the top a five leafed clover, and in base a hawk's leg.
Crest: An eagle.
Motto: Spero
These are the two versions of the crest associated with the Shanks family.  The crest on the left is an original design by me, based upon a description I found on a site selling various family crest and coats of arms products.  If you were to order such a product, the crest should be similar, cut may not be exactly the same.  The other is another crest I found on the internet.

* red crest indicates military fortitude and magnamity
* Double Eagle and Eagle - Signifies a man of action, ever more occupied in high and weighty affairs, and one of lofty spirit, ingenious, speedy in apprehension and judicious in matters of ambiguity.
* Falcon or Hawk - One eager or hot in the pursuit of an object much desired.

Origin of the family and name:

Origin: Scottish
Spelling variations include: Shank, Shanke, Schank, Schanke, Shankis, Schankis and many more.

First found in in Midlothian where the family had been seated from very ancient times where they were designated as 'Shank of that Ilk" meaning an ancient Clan who possessed lands of that same name.

Some of the first settlers of this name or some of its variants were: Stephen Shank settled in the Barbados in 1663; John George Shank arrived in Pennsylvania in 1770; John Shanks settled in Virginia in 1650; another John Shanks arrived in Virginia in 1734; Math and others.