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

Origins Available: English, French

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

The ancient Normans that arrived in England following the Conquest of 1066 are the initial ancestors from which the many generations of the Payne family have grown. The name Payne was given to a member of the family who was a person who lives in the country or a person who's religious beliefs are somewhat suspect. Checking further we found the name was derived from the Old English word paien, which was originally derived from the Latin word paganus, meaning rustic or countryman. It later also came to mean heathen and was often given to children whose baptism was delayed or, to adults whose religious zeal was not what the standards of the day indicated it should have been.


The English language only became standardized in the last few centuries. For that reason, spelling variations are common among many Anglo-Norman names. The shape of the English language was frequently changed with the introduction of elements of Norman French, Latin, and other European languages; even the spelling of literate people's names were subsequently modified. Payne has been recorded under many different variations, including Payne, Paine, Paynell, Pane, Pain and others.

First found in Sussex where they held a family seat from very early times and were granted lands by Duke William of Normandy, their liege Lord, for their distinguished assistance at the Battle of Hastings in 1066 A.D.


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Payne research. Another 351 words(25 lines of text) covering the years 1086, 1532, 1582, 1652, 1704, 1717, 1789, 1710, 1630, 1713, 1695, 1698, 1632, 1715 and are included under the topic Early Payne History in all our PDF Extended History products.


Another 289 words(21 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Payne Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.


Some of the Payne family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 153 words(11 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.


To escape the uncertainty of the political and religious uncertainty found in England, many English families boarded ships at great expense to sail for the colonies held by Britain. The passages were expensive, though, and the boats were unsafe, overcrowded, and ridden with disease. Those who were hardy and lucky enough to make the passage intact were rewarded with land, opportunity, and social environment less prone to religious and political persecution. Many of these families went on to be important contributors to the young nations of Canada and the United States where they settled. Paynes were some of the first of the immigrants to arrive in North America:

Payne Settlers in the United States in the 17th Century

  • Anne Payne, who settled with her husband William and children, in Boston in 1635
  • Thomas Payne settled in Virginia in 1635
  • Anna Payne, aged 40, landed in New England in 1635
  • Suzan Payne, aged 11, landed in New England in 1635
  • Robert Payne, who arrived in New England in 1641

Payne Settlers in the United States in the 18th Century

  • Jasper Payne, who landed in Pennsylvania in 1743

Payne Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century

  • William Maynard Payne, who arrived in Barbados in 1802
  • Isaac Payne, who landed in America in 1805
  • Elizabeth Payne, aged 40, arrived in Massachusetts in 1812
  • Joel Payne, aged 35, arrived in Pennsylvania in 1836
  • Charles Payne, who arrived in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1850


  • Sereno Elisha Payne (1843-1914), American lawyer and politician
  • Ethel L. Payne (1911-1991), award-winning African American journalist
  • Dr. Melvin M Payne (1911-1990), American who served as president, executive vice president, and secretary of the National Geographic Society
  • Chris Fox "C.F." Payne (b. 1954), American illustrator
  • John Barton Payne (1855-1935), former American Secretary of the Interior
  • Scherrie Payne (b. 1944), American singer, co-lead singer for The Supremes
  • Nicolle Katherine Payne (b. 1976), American Olympic water polo player medalist
  • Alexander Payne (b. 1961), American Academy Award-winning film director and screenwriter
  • Ben Iden Payne (1881-1976), English actor and director
  • Ernest Payne (1884-1961), English Olympic gold medalist cyclist



  • The Paynes of Virginia by Brooke Payne.
  • Descendants of Sanford Payne by Madge Starliper Payne.
  • Foxworth, Bush, Payne, Bledsoe & Allied Lineages by Sarah Payne Foxworth.

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: Malo mori quam foedari
Motto Translation: I would rather die than be disgraced.


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  1. Markale, J. Celtic Civilization. London: Gordon & Cremonesi, 1976. Print.
  2. Matthews, John. Matthews' American Armoury and Blue Book. London: John Matthews, 1911. Print.
  3. Humble, Richard. The Fall of Saxon England. New York: Barnes and Noble, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-88029-987-8).
  4. Bede, The Venerable. Historia Ecclesiatica Gentis Anglorum (The Ecclesiastical History Of the English People). Available through Internet Medieval Sourcebook the Fordham University Centre for Medieval Studies. Print.
  5. Sanders, Joanne McRee Edition. English Settlers in Barbados 1637-1800. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  6. Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds. Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8).
  7. Mills, A.D. Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4).
  8. The Norman People and Their Existing Descendants in the British Dominions and the United States Of America. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0636-X).
  9. Bardsley, C.W. A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6).
  10. Hinde, Thomas Ed. The Domesday Book England's Heritage Then and Now. Surrey: Colour Library Books, 1995. Print. (ISBN 1-85833-440-3).
  11. ...

The Payne Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Payne 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 31 August 2014 at 16:36.

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