Surname & Crest

This German surname of HEISLER was originally derived from the Old English word HUS. The first hereditary surnames on German soil are found in the second half of the 12th century, slightly later than in England and France. However, it was not until the 16th century that they became stabilized. The practice of adopting hereditary surnames began in the southern areas of Germany, and gradually spread northwards during the Middle Ages. In the Middle Ages the majority of the population lived in cottages or huts rather than houses, and in most cases this name probably indicates someone who had some connection with the largest and most important building of the settlement, perhaps in a religious house or simply the local ‘great house’. In some cases it may indicate a ‘householder’ someone who owned his own dwelling as opposed to being a tenant. The name has numerous variant spellings which include HAUSER, HOOS, HAUSE, HAUSNER, HEUSER, HUSELER and HAUZER, to name but a few. A notable member of the name was Gayelord HAUSER (1895-1984) the German-born American popular nutritionist. He emigrated to the USA after World War I and set up business in California in 1927 advocating special vegetable diets featuring ‘wonder foods’ like brewer’s yeast, skim milk, wheat germ and blackstrap molasses. He made a fortune with best-selling books such as ‘Look Younger, Live Longer’ (1950) and ‘Be Happier, Be Healthier’ (1952). It was not until the 10th century that modern hereditary surnames first developed, and the use of fixed names spread, first to France, and then England, then to Germany and all of Europe. In these parts of Europe, the individual man was becoming more important, commerce was increasing and the exact identification of each man was becoming a necessity. Even today however, the Church does not recognise surnames. Baptisms and marriages are performed through use of the Christian name alone. Thus hereditary names as we know them today developed gradually during the 11th to the 15th century in the various European countries.