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

Where did the English Claxton family come from? When did the Claxton family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the Claxton family history?

The name Claxton is of Anglo-Saxon origin and came from when the family lived in Claxton, a small village in the county of Durham. It is generally believed that a branch of the Norman family of Heriz, settled here and assumed the local name. The surname is derived from the Old English word clacs-tun which literally means those who lived near the clayey soil.

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It is only in the last few hundred years that the English language has been standardized. For that reason, early Anglo-Saxon surnames like Claxton are characterized by many spelling variations. As the English language changed and incorporated elements of other European languages, even literate people changed the spelling of their names. Scribes and monks in the Middle Ages spelled names they sounded, so it is common to find several variations that refer to a single person. The variations of the name Claxton include: Claxton, Claxon, Klaxon, Klaxton and others.

First found in Durham where it is believed the first reference of the name was found. There are three other listings of the place name in the Domesday Book: Claxton, or Long Clawson (Clachestone) in Leicestershire, Claxton (Clakestona, Clarestona) in Norfolk, and Claxton (Claxtorp) in North Yorkshire. [1] In Norfolk, Claxton Castle was built in 1333 in the village of Claxton, but it was largely demolished in the 17th century to build Claxton Hall. Today, Claxton is also a village and civil parish in the Ryedale district of North Yorkshire, England.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Claxton research. Another 207 words(15 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Claxton History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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More information is included under the topic Early Claxton Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Many English families tired of political and religious strife left Britain for the new colonies in North America. Although the trip itself offered no relief - conditions on the ships were extremely cramped, and many travelers arrived diseased, starving, and destitute - these immigrants believed the opportunities that awaited them were worth the risks. Once in the colonies, many of the families did indeed prosper and, in turn, made significant contributions to the culture and economies of the growing colonies. An inquiry into the early roots of North American families has revealed a number of immigrants bearing the name Claxton or a variant listed above:

Claxton Settlers in the United States in the 17th Century


  • Abraham Claxton who settled in Bermuda in 1635
  • Edward Claxton, who landed in Maryland in 1639
  • Bryan Claxton, who arrived in Maryland in 1669

Claxton Settlers in the United States in the 18th Century


  • Richd Claxton, who arrived in Virginia in 1704
  • John and Sarah Claxton settled in Maryland in 1739
  • John Claxton, who arrived in Maryland in 1740
  • George Claxton settled in New England in 1767

Claxton Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century


  • William Claxton, who landed in New York in 1845

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  • Jimmy Claxton (1892-1970), Canadian Afro-American baseball pitcher
  • Kate Claxton (1848-1924), born Kate Elizabeth Cone, American actress
  • Philander Claxton (1862-1957), American educator, United States Commissioner of Education
  • Rozelle Claxton (1913-1995), American jazz pianist
  • Craig "Speedy" Claxton (b. 1978), American basketball player
  • Thomas Claxton (1790-1813), American officer in the United States Navy during the War of 1812, eponym USS Claxton (DD-140) and USS Claxton (DD-571)
  • William Claxton (1927-2008), American photographer
  • Charles Robert Claxton (1903-1992), English Bishop, fourth Suffragan Bishop of Warrington
  • Florence Claxton (1840-1879), English artist
  • Marshall Claxton (1811-1881), English landscape and portrait painter

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  1. ^ Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)

Other References

  1. Burke, Sir Bernard. Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Peerage and Baronetage, The Privy Council, Knightage and Compainonage. London: Burke Publishing, 1921. Print.
  2. Hinde, Thomas Ed. The Domesday Book England's Heritage Then and Now. Surrey: Colour Library Books, 1995. Print. (ISBN 1-85833-440-3).
  3. Fairbairn. Fairbain's book of Crests of the Families of Great Britain and Ireland, 4th Edition 2 volumes in one. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1968. Print.
  4. Weis, Frederick Lewis, Walter Lee Sheppard and David Faris. Ancestral Roots of Sixty Colonists Who Came to New England Between 1623 and 1650 7th Edition. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0806313676).
  5. Samuelsen, W. David. New York City Passenger List Manifests Index 1820 - 1824. North Salt Lake, Utah: Accelerated Indexing Systems International, 1986. Print.
  6. Best, Hugh. Debrett's Texas Peerage. New York: Coward-McCann, 1983. Print. (ISBN 069811244X).
  7. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  8. Robb H. Amanda and Andrew Chesler. Encyclopedia of American Family Names. New York: Haper Collins, 1995. Print. (ISBN 0-06-270075-8).
  9. Browning, Charles H. Americans of Royal Descent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  10. Passenger Lists of Vessels Arriving at Galveston Texas 1896-1951. National Archives Washington DC. Print.
  11. ...


This page was last modified on 11 June 2013 at 03:57.

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