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Surname Holister - Meaning and Origin

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Holister: What does the surname Holister mean?

The surname Holister is of English origin, derived from the habitational name ‘Hollister’, which in turn was derived from three Old English words: ‘holh’, meaning ‘hollow’; ‘torr’, meaning ‘tower’; and ‘ceaster’, meaning ‘Roman fort’. This combination would loosely translate to mean ‘the settlement by the hollow tower, or ruin’. It is also possible that the settlement may have been centred around ancient hill forts or moats.

In Scotland, Holister can be an Anglicised form of the Gaelic MacCailein-mor which literally means “son/descendant of big Colin.”

The first record of Holister as a surname is in the 13th century, when William de Hollister was recorded in the 1274 in Assize Rolls for Staffordshire. William Hollister appears as a witness to an arbitration in a roll (date unknown) in Norfolk. Holister families were largely landowners or farmers in the Middle Ages, with many becoming prosperous and anglicising their names.

In the United States, the Holister surname can be traced back to the arrival of the Mayflower in 1620, when William Holmes from Kent came to New England. The name was found to have most likely changed to Holister over the years.

Being a surname, Holister is usually a family name and has an important significance in the immigrant’s cultural identity. It carries with it a shared ancestral history and legacy of hard work and resilience.

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Holister: Where does the name Holister come from?

The surname Holister is believed to be of English origin, and is most commonly found in the United States. It is estimated that Holister is the 1,629th most common surname in the country.

Holister has been found in records traced back to the reign of King John in England, as in the Holister family of Wiltshire, who held a family seat since the 12th century. Records of those bearing the Holister surname from this time period and earlier can be found in the Hundredorum Rolls of 1273, the Subsidy Rolls of Suffolk in 1327, and the Poll Tax Rolls of Yorkshire in 1379.

Today, Holister is found throughout the United States. The states with the most Holister family members are Texas, California, Illinois, Ohio, and Pennsylvania. Popular Holister cities include Houston, Los Angeles, Chicago, Cincinnati, and Philadelphia.

Holister is also a popular surname in Canada. Records show that the family settled in Nova Scotia in 1756, and that many more migrated from there to New Brunswick in the mid-1800s.

Although Holister is most commonly found in North America, there are notable families bearing the surname in other countries. In particular, Holister has been found in records in England, Wales, Scotland, Ireland, Germany, Denmark, and France.

Variations of the surname Holister

The surname Holister is of Anglo-Norman origin and has variants, spellings and surnames of the same origin. Many of these variants are due to archaic spelling and the influence of regional dialects.

The most common variants of the surname include Hollister, Hollist, Hollistar, Hollestar, Holestar, Hollestere, Hollasters, Hollistere, Hollastarr, Hallister, Hollaster, Hollastics and Hallistore.

The common anglicised spelling of the surname is Holister and it is also sometimes spelt as Hollister or Hollist. It also has close variations which include Holister, Hallester, Hollister, Hollyster and Holliss.

Other variant spellings of the surname can include Hallowes, Hallise, Halsey, Halson, Halse, Holsome, Homelius, Halstead and Haulstead.

The surname Holister has additional surnames of the same origin as Halliday, Hallidaye, Hallidy, Hallidye, Hallady, Holadena, Holyday, Holadie, Holladay, Hollay, Holliday, Hollodey, Hollody, Holody, Holoday and Holodaie.

Although there are numerous variants of the surname Holister, they all derive from the same Anglo-Norman origin. The Holister surname has spread to many parts of the world and is now an established family name.

Famous people with the name Holister

  • Sydney Holister: a famous American actress who has appeared in television shows such as Blue Bloods, Shark Tank, and Grey's Anatomy.
  • Sam Holister: a former NBA basketball player who won the championship with the San Antonio Spurs in 2003.
  • Charles Holister: a renowned Broadway and film actor known for his role in The Producers.
  • Jasper Holister: an acclaimed British composer, musician, and conductor who has written scores for many films and television series.
  • Jack Holister: a leading contemporary artist whose work has been featured in major museums such as the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York City.
  • Edith Holister: a prominent American novelist, short-story writer, and playwright whose works of fiction include The House of Mirth and Our Mutual Friend.
  • Benjamin Holister: the founder of the Holister Corporation, a multinational energy and engineering firm with operations all over the world.
  • Janice Holister: a famous animal rights activist and environmentalist who has been featured in many documentaries and talk shows.
  • Hannah Holister: an award-winning journalist and political commentator who currently hosts her own radio show on NPR.
  • Mason Holister: a renowned race car driver who is the current world champion in the Formula One Grand Prix series.

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