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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright 2000 - 2014

Origins Available: English, Scottish

Where did the Scottish Beaty family come from? What is the Scottish Beaty family crest and coat of arms? When did the Beaty family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the Beaty family history?

The name Beaty comes from the Scottish/English Borderlands and the ancient Boernicians who inhabited them. It is derived from Bate or Baty, diminutive forms of Bartholomew. The name is not a metronymic derived from the name Beatrice, as is commonly thought, but rather the name was more probably from Gilbert fitz Beatrice who was living in the county of Roxburghe in 1296. To confuse matters more, the name could also be from the Gaelic "biadhtach", which refers to a tenant granted land in return for feeding certain people chosen by the chief.

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A lack of rules and the tendency of scribes to spell according to the sound of the word plagued medieval spelling. Not surprisingly, an enormous number of spelling variations appeared. Beaty has been written Beattie, Beatty, Beaty, Beatie, Betay, Bety and others.

First found in Roxburghshire, where they held a family seat from ancient times.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Beaty research. Another 145 words(10 lines of text) covering the years 1296, 1597, 1603, 1735, 1771, and 1803 are included under the topic Early Beaty History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Another 46 words(3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Beaty Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Some of the Beaty family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 217 words(16 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Many Scots crossed the Atlantic for North America hoping to escape poverty, as well as persecution. Much of their heritage was lost along the way and overtime. This century, however, Clan societies and highland games have allowed many ancestral Scots to recover their birthright. An examination of many early immigration records reveals that people bearing the name Beaty arrived in North America very early:

Beaty Settlers in the United States in the 18th Century


  • James Beaty came to Charles Town [Charleston], South Carolina in 1766
  • James Beaty arrived in Delaware in 1785

Beaty Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century


  • Jonathan Beaty, who landed in South Carolina in 1807
  • John Beaty, who landed in New York, NY in 1812
  • Geo Beaty, who landed in New York, NY in 1812
  • Mary Beaty, who landed in New York, NY in 1812
  • Richard Beaty, who arrived in New York, NY in 1812


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  • Shirley MacLean Beaty (b. 1934), American actor better known as Shirley MacLaine
  • Henry Warren Beaty (b. 1937), American actor better known as Warren Beatty
  • James A. Beaty Jr. (b. 1949), U.S. District Judge and former federal judicial nominee to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
  • Madisen Beaty (b. 1995), American teen actress based in the Los Angeles, California area
  • Powhatan Beaty (1837-1916), African American soldier and actor, recipient of the Medal of Honor for his actions at the Battle of Chaffin's Farm
  • William J. Beaty, American research engineer
  • Zelmo Beaty (b. 1939), former American basketball player
  • Arthur David Beaty (1919-1999), British writer, pilot and psychologist
  • Chris Beaty, former bassist for the Christian Punk Ska band The O.C. Supertones
  • James Beaty Jr. (1831-1899), Mayor of Toronto from 1879 to 1880 and a Canadian Member of Parliament from 1880 to 1887

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The motto was originally a war cry or slogan. Mottoes first began to be shown with arms in the 14th and 15th centuries, but were not in general use until the 17th century. Thus the oldest coats of arms generally do not include a motto. Mottoes seldom form part of the grant of arms: Under most heraldic authorities, a motto is an optional component of the coat of arms, and can be added to or changed at will; many families have chosen not to display a motto.

Motto: Lumen coeleste sequamur
Motto Translation: May we follow heavenly inspiration.

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  1. Bain, Robert. The Clans and Tartans of Scotland. Glasgow & London: Collins, 1968. Print. (ISBN 000411117-6).
  2. Dorward, David. Scottish Surnames. Glasgow: Harper Collins, 1995. Print.
  3. Robb H. Amanda and Andrew Chesler. Encyclopedia of American Family Names. New York: Haper Collins, 1995. Print. (ISBN 0-06-270075-8).
  4. Moody David. Scottish Family History. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1994. Print. (ISBN 0806312688).
  5. Magnusson, Magnus. Chambers Biographical Dictionary 5th edition. Edinburgh: W & R Chambers, 1990. Print.
  6. Burke, Sir Bernard. Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Peerage and Baronetage, The Privy Council, Knightage and Compainonage. London: Burke Publishing, 1921. Print.
  7. Leyburn, James Graham. The Scotch-Irish A Social History. Chapel Hill: UNC Press, 1962. Print. (ISBN 0807842591).
  8. Samuelsen, W. David. New York City Passenger List Manifests Index 1820 - 1824. North Salt Lake, Utah: Accelerated Indexing Systems International, 1986. Print.
  9. Papworth, J.W and A.W Morant. Ordinary of British Armorials. London: T.Richards, 1874. Print.
  10. Shaw, William A. Knights of England A Complete Record from the Earliest Time to the Present Day of the Knights of all the Orders of Chivalry in England, Scotland, Ireland and Knights Bachelors 2 Volumes. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print. (ISBN 080630443X).
  11. ...

The Beaty Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Beaty Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

This page was last modified on 28 December 2013 at 01:26.

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