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

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

The Anglo-Saxon tribes of Britain were the first to use the name of Cartwright. The name had a practical origin since it came from when its initial bearer worked as a maker of carts, and wheels. The name has its origins in the Old English word craet, which means cart, and the Old English word wyrtha, which means wright or maker, thereby denoting one who was the maker of carts or wagons.

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Until quite recently, the English language has lacked a definite system of spelling rules. Consequently, Anglo-Saxon surnames are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations. Changes in Anglo-Saxon names were influenced by the evolution of the English language, as it incorporated elements of French, Latin, and other languages. Although Medieval scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded, so it is common to find one person referred to by several different spellings of his surname, even the most literate people varied the spelling of their own names. Variations of the name Cartwright include Cartwright, Cartright, Cartwrite, Carthright, Kartwright, Kartright, Cartrite, Kartwrite, Chartwright, Cartrite, Catherick, Cartrait, Cartray, Ceterith, Cateray, Cautheret, Carterwright, Carterright, Carterrite, Chartright, Chartwright, Cardwright and many more.

First found in Worcestershire, some say well before the Norman Conquest in 1066 A.D.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Cartwright research. Another 239 words(17 lines of text) covering the years 1273, 1755, 1634, 1676, 1659, 1634, 1689, 1686, 1602, 1658, 1686, 1635 and 1703 are included under the topic Early Cartwright History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Another 171 words(12 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Cartwright Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Searching for a better life, many English families migrated to British colonies. Unfortunately, the majority of them traveled under extremely harsh conditions: overcrowding on the ships caused the majority of the immigrants to arrive diseased, famished, and destitute from the long journey across the ocean. For those families that arrived safely, modest prosperity was attainable, and many went on to make invaluable contributions to the development of the cultures of the new colonies. Research into the origins of individual families in North America revealed records of the immigration of a number of people bearing the name Cartwright or a variant listed above:

Cartwright Settlers in the United States in the 17th Century


  • John Cartwright settled in Virginia in 1624
  • Bethia Cartwright who settled in Salem Massachusetts in 1630
  • Edward Cartwright in Nantucket married and had Sampson in 1678 , Susanna in 1681, Edward in 1683, and Mary in 1687

Cartwright Settlers in the United States in the 18th Century


  • Matthew Cartwright settled in Maryland in 1700

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  • Angela Margaret Cartwright (b. 1952), American actress best known as a child actress for her role as Brigitta Von Trapp in the film The Sound of Music
  • Bill Cartwright (b. 1957), former NBA basketball player
  • Marc Cartwright (b. 1975), American celebrity portrait photographer
  • William T. "Bill" Cartwright (1920-2013), Emmy Award-winning American television and film director, producer and editor
  • Erik Cartwright (b. 1950), American rock guitarist
  • General James E. "Hoss" Cartwright (b. 1949), American eighth Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff
  • Veronica A. Cartwright (b. 1949), American (British born) actress
  • Ryan Cartwright (b. 1981), English film and television actor
  • Edmund Cartwright D.D. (1743-1823), English inventor of the power loom and the wool combing machine
  • Mr. James Edward Cartwright (d. 1912), aged 32, English Saloon Steward from Southampton, Hampshire who worked aboard the RMS Titanic and died in the sinking and was recovered by CS Minia

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  • Cartwright and Shipp Families of Lower Norfolk, Princess Anne and Surry Counties, Virginia and North Carolina by Alice Granbery Walter
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  1. Zieber, Eugene. Heraldry in America. Philadelphia: Genealogical Publishing Co. Print.
  2. Hanks, Patricia and Flavia Hodges. A Dictionary of Surnames. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988. Print. (ISBN 0-19-211592-8).
  3. Passenger Lists of Vessels Arriving at Galveston Texas 1896-1951. National Archives Washington DC. Print.
  4. MacAulay, Thomas Babington. History of England from the Accession of James the Second 4 volumes. New York: Harper and Brothers, 1879. Print.
  5. Hinde, Thomas Ed. The Domesday Book England's Heritage Then and Now. Surrey: Colour Library Books, 1995. Print. (ISBN 1-85833-440-3).
  6. Markale, J. Celtic Civilization. London: Gordon & Cremonesi, 1976. Print.
  7. Reaney P.H and R.M. Wilson. A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X).
  8. Egle, William Henry. Pennsylvania Genealogies Scotch-Irish and German. Harrisburg: L.S. Hart, 1886. Print.
  9. Browning, Charles H. Americans of Royal Descent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  10. Samuelsen, W. David. New York City Passenger List Manifests Index 1820 - 1824. North Salt Lake, Utah: Accelerated Indexing Systems International, 1986. Print.
  11. ...

The Cartwright Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Cartwright 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 12 July 2014 at 13:24.

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