Frequently asked questions about the Lovelace/Loveless family

Lovelace and Loveless Family

Answers to Frequently Asked Questions

About the Lovelace/Loveless Family and Genealogical Research

For more information on any of the information presented here or for any other questions you might have, feel free to contact me.

Wendy Loveless Waldron




Table of Contents

  1. What can you tell me about the Lovelace/Loveless name?
  2. What do you know about the earliest family members?
  3. Who are the people on the internet Lovelace List?
  4. What can I do to research my own ancestry?
  5. What other resources are available to study the family?
  6. Genealogy Record Keeping


What can you tell me about the Lovelace/Loveless name?

When comparing the frequency of current surnames, Lovelace is listed as #2,646; Loveless is listed as #3,705.

There are several different stories circulating regarding the origin of the Lovelace and Loveless name and the reason for the name changes in America. According to the London Ontario Free Press, July 1, 1978 in an article titled "Tracing the Lovelace Family turns up all sorts of Exploits," sent by Andy Pratt was the following:

A dictionary of surnames has the following:

Many of our families tell the story of American Lovelaces changing their name to Loveless during the Revolutionary War period. Traditionally, this was to tell the difference between loyalists and patriots. I can't vouch for most family lines, as many patriots retained the name Lovelace as evidenced by Rev. War records. However, one man, Thomas Lovelace, was actually executed as a spy. Other family members in the area did change the name to Loveless in order to avoid persecution. The notorious Thomas Lovelace ran away to Canada and formed a company with 5 others. He then returned to abduct, plunder and betray his former neighbors in Saratoga, Schnectady, and Albany Counties in New York. His crimes were many. He robbed General Schuyler's house and attempted to carry off Col. Van Vechten. He was captured, tried, and hung by General Stark then in command of the troops near Fish Creek.

The Lovelace/Loveless name continues to vary among family lines in later American records. Many suppose that this was due simply to bad spelling. Some try to show that all Lovelesses are descendants of Lovelaces; however, English records show Loveless family members almost as early as the Lovelaces. Interestingly, some family lines changed from Lovelace to Loveless; others changed from Loveless to Lovelace. The family name tends to remain similar, however, in differing geographic regions. Census records show great variety in the spelling of the name; especially among families who were illiterate.

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What do you know about the earliest family members?

There are some notable Lovelaces who deserve mention. Click on the names below to find out more.

Ada Byron Lovelace , Daughter of Lord Byron and co-inventor of computer programming

Francis Lovelace, Second English Governor of NY

Richard Lovelace, English Poet (1618-1657)

Earliest English Lovelace Family Contains an outline of the earliest ancestry from John Lovelace born about 1300 (Note: This page is large)

Lovelace Chapel at St. Mary's Church of Bethersden, Kent, England

Tolpuddle Martyrs, James & George Loveless of England and Canada.  To join an e-mail list geared especially toward the Tolpuddle Martyrs and other non-American Loveless and Lovelace family, send an e-mail to [email protected] with just the word Subscribe in the body or e-mail me to request the list.

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Who are the people on the internet Lovelace List?

There are many subscribers to the e-mail list from all over the US; we even have a few subscribers from overseas. The group changes with those that come and go; but a core group of us have been there since the inception of the list November of 1996. 

Click here for a list of other Lovelxxx researcher web sites.   If you wish to join the Lovelace List, simply send an e-mail to [email protected], with only the word SUBSCRIBE in the message.  See the section above for a related Loveless list specifically geared toward those Loveless researchers in England, Canada, Australia,  and New Zealand called "Tolpuddle."

If you choose not to join the list, you can always contact one of the subscribers directly who is researching your family line.

Below is a comment about the Lovelace List from one of our subscribers. For another terrific coment, see what Debbie Burke wrote as shown on the Lovelace List page.

From Kim Holly:

Greg and Wendy....your list was the first one I subscribed to and didn't know any differently. I've recently subscribed to numerous lists and there is no comparison. You've brought strangers together and allowed us be a family of Lovelxxx's instead of a LIST out after the dates and facts. You guys are the best! :)

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What can I do to research my own ancestry?

The easiest and quickest way to get started in your Lovelace/Loveless family research is to not reinvent the wheel. In other words; use the resources available to find out what others know, then back that up with your own documentation.  Check out the Lovelace List archives on the newsletter and list page.  Visit the Gen-Connect section on the home page and the documents section of this web site.   Submit your family line to the database so I can help you connect with other researchers who are working on your line. If you don't have more than a couple of generations on your family (perhaps just yourself and your parents), we can give you advice about which records to start with to find your family member. There are many good books on the subject at your library, and your library or nearest Latter-Day Saints (Mormon) Family History Center can be the best resource for ordering microfilmed documents. Many resources are available here on the internet, and I've included some links below.

For very recent generations, you will need to look at vital records. If the person was born between 1790 and 1920 in the US, you should be able to find a census record. There are many kinds of documents that are available to you without having to travel far. However, if you do get the opportunity, no research is better than going to where your ancestors lived. Just seeing the land, the cemeteries, the area in which they lived is productive. Part of what you learn with genealogy is within yourself. Take advantage of that opportunity if at all possible.

Check out our page on genealogy record keeping written by William Dollarhide for organizational information.

For some genealogical list humor, click here.

Almost all genealogical web pages have links to other sites; be sure to visit and try many. Below are some of sites that have been around as long as we have:

Cyndi's List of Genealogy Sites
 on the Internet Cyndi's List of Genealogy Sites on the Internet

rwbutton.gif (2869 bytes) Rootsweb at is a pay for use service that regularly has free database searches.

The Mining Company at includes basic information about genealogy.

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What other resources are available to study the family?

There have been publications on the Lovelace/Loveless family. Often cited sources are:

"Loveless-Lovelace and Allied Families," by Florance Keeney Loveless Robertson.

"Controversy In the Carolinas," by Jayne Pratt Lovelace.

"200 American Ancestors," by Richard William Loveless.

We encourage you to use caution followed by your own detailed research.  Because we now have dna and the internet to add to our genealogical data, some of the "facts" and suppositions in the above books were proven false. 



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Last modified: February 12, 2007

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