Excerpt from The Lusk Family, A Record of the Ancestors and Descendants of Willard Clayton Lusk, 1938 by Alma Victoria Davies Lusk and Martin Willard Lusk, pp. 7 and 8, card catalogue number 929.7 L975L.


    THE ORIGIN of the name and family of Lusk is largely a matter of legend and conjecture.  That the family came from the British Isles there is no doubt, but no actual record of their Old World home or history prior to their immigration to America has been found.

    The legend that persists in our branch of the family tells that the Norman Knight John came to England with William the Conqueror in 1066.  After the conquest, in recognition of his service to the new king, he was given a grant of land on the River Usk in Western England and Wales.  He adopted the name John Le Usk, which was later shortened to Lusk.

A letter from the Honorable Hugh Lusk, East Orange, N.J. (a relative of Sir Andrew Lusk, M.P., of London, England), in the Flora Ward Lusk Collection, says:

"Of the history of the family itself before it came to America I can speak with more confidence.

 "Originally, there can be no doubt, the Lusks were DANES, who came to the West of Scotland not less than six centuries ago and settled in Ayrshire, where they owned landed property until the death of my grandfather in the year 1846, when the last of it was sold....

"In the time of the Cromwellian conquest and settlement of the north of Ireland in the year 1656, a younger branch of the family took part in the settlement of the confiscated territory and recovered part of the land.  You may find marked on and good map of the north of Ireland the town of LUSK which still marks the site of this original grant or settlement.

"The legend in the family is that the original Lusk came as a soldier of King Haco of Denmark when he invaded Scotland in the thirteenth century and was defeated at the battle of Largs, on the Ayrshire Coast.  There is, however, no documentary evidence in support of this.  The name is still well known and not uncommon in Denmark."

   In the letters of Reverend Davis Lusk, of New Jersey, a Presbyterian minister of note, Flora Ward Lusk finds this quotation: "Lusk, a native of County Antrim, Ireland, fled from that Country on account of religious Persecution . . . Protestants."

    Stiles, in his "Genealogies and Biographies of ancient Wethersfield, Connecticut," says: "They (the Lusks) were of Scotch-Irish origin, known as 'North of Ireland men,' that is, men who - or their progenitors - driven from Scotland by religious and civil persecution, had found refuge for a while in the northern counties of Ireland.  They were of the stalwart, energetic, liberty-loving and God-fearing race which, by successive immigrations, contributed so greatly to the formation of our national character during the Colonial period preceding the revolutionary war."

The origin of the name is also attributed to the Norman Simon De Lusco, to the old Anglo-Saxon word "luske," meaning “lazy,” to the Gaelic word for "cave" and the Welsh "losce," a "burning," or "searing"-Gaelic "loisy," "to burn.”  The name in American records is spelled "Lusk," "Lisk,” “Lush,” “Lysk" and "Loosh."  The last two, according to Salley, historian of the Carolinas, states the Scotch spelling by clerk according to sound.


Stephen Lusk was at Newington, Connecticut, according to church records, by 1715.  Mrs. William D. Spalding, now deceased, Brooklyn, New York, felt almost certain, from her accurate and extensive research, that he was the father of all the known Lusks in Connecticut.  To date no other record has been found to prove it.  ...



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