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

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

The name Charlton, which is Celtic in origin, arose in the hardy landscape of Wales comes. Its origins date back to when the Charlton family lived in any of such places as Carlton in Bedfordshire, Cambridge, Durham, Lincolnshire, Leicestershire, Nottinghamshire, Northumberland, Suffolk, or the East Riding of Yorkshire, or in one of the places called Carleton in Cumberland Lancashire, Norfolk, or the West Riding of Yorkshire. One of the reasons for the numerous entries of the place name is that the name literally means "farmstead or estate of the freemen" [1]

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There are relatively few surnames native to Wales, but they have an inordinately large number of spelling variations. Early variations of Welsh surnames can be explained by the fact that very few people in the early Middle Ages were literate. Priests and the few other literate people were responsible for recording names in official documents. And because most people could not specific how to properly record their names it was up to the individual recorder of that time to determine how a spoken name should be recorded. Variations due to the imprecise or improper recording of a name continued later in history when names originally composed in the Brythonic Celtic, language of Wales, known by natives as Cymraeg, were transliterated into English. Welsh names that were documented in English often changed dramatically since the native language of Wales, which was highly inflected, did not copy well. Occasionally, however, spelling variations were carried out according to an individual's specific design: a branch loyalty within the family, a religious adherence, or even patriotic affiliations could be indicated by minor variations. The spelling variations of the name Charlton have included Carleton, Carlton, Charleton, Charlton and others.

First found in Herefordshire, where they held a family seat from very ancient times, some say well before the Norman Conquest and the arrival of Duke William at Hastings in 1066 A.D.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Charlton research. Another 247 words(18 lines of text) covering the years 1100, 1362, 1401, 1560, 1638, 1573, 1632, 1599, 1654, 1559, 1628, 1618, 1619, 1605, 1685, 1660, 1661, 1672, 1679, 1678, 1685, 1642, 1673, 1673 and are included under the topic Early Charlton History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Another 257 words(18 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Charlton Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Some of the Charlton family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 165 words(12 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Many Welsh families joined their Scottish and Irish neighbors during the late 1800s and early 1900s in seeking refuge in North America. Like the Irish and Scottish, many Welsh anxiously awaited the work, freedom, and opportunities that they believed lay in North America. Those who did journey over to the United States and what became known as Canada often realized those dreams, but only through much toil and perseverance. Whenever and however these Welsh immigrants arrived in North America, they were instrumental in the creation of the industry, commerce, and cultural heritage within those two developing nations. In the immigration and passenger lists a number of early immigrants bearing the name Charlton were found:

Charlton Settlers in the United States in the 17th Century


  • Henna Charlton, who landed in Virginia in 1623
  • Wm Charlton, who arrived in Virginia in 1662
  • la Charlton, who arrived in Virginia in 1663
  • Jno Charlton, who landed in Virginia in 1664
  • William Charlton, who landed in Virginia in 1664


Charlton Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century


  • John Charlton, who landed in Savanna(h), Georgia in 1808
  • Robert Charlton, aged 32, arrived in New York in 1812
  • George Charlton, aged 26, arrived in Georgia in 1812

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  • Brigadier-General Russell C. Charlton (1899-1972), American Adjutant-General of New Mexico (1935-1944)
  • Norman Wood Charlton III (b. 1963), nicknamed "The Sheriff", American former Major League Baseball relief pitcher
  • Lilla Charlton (1899-1994), American mother of the famed actor Charlton Heston, born John Charles Carter, but assumed the forename of Charlton in honor of his mother
  • Robert "Bobby" Charlton (b. 1937), English soccer player
  • John "Jack" Charlton (b. 1935), English soccer player
  • Edward Colquhoun Charlton (1920-1945), British soldier awarded the Victoria Cross during WWII
  • Air Commodore Lionel Charlton (1879-1958), senior RAF commander
  • Alethea Charlton (1932-1976), British actress
  • Matthew Charlton (1866-1948), Australian politician, Leader of the Australian Labor Party 1922-28, eponym of the Division of Charlton, an Australian Electoral Division in New South Wales
  • William Charlton, Canadian politician

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  1. ^ Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)

Other References

  1. Bolton, Charles Knowles. Bolton's American Armory. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1964. Print.
  2. Bradsley C.W. A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print.
  3. Hanks, Patricia and Flavia Hodges. A Dictionary of Surnames. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988. Print. (ISBN 0-19-211592-8).
  4. 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).
  5. Bullock, L.G. Historical Map of England and Wales. Edinburgh: Bartholomew and Son, 1971. Print.
  6. Evans, Gwynfor. Wales: A History: 2000 Years of Welsh History. New York: Barnes and Noble, 1996. Print. (ISBN 0-76070-120-2).
  7. Burke, Sir Bernard. Burke's Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Landed Gentry: Including American Families with British Ancestry. (2 Volumes). London: Burke Publishing, 1939. Print.
  8. Bradford, William. History of Plymouth Plantation 1620-1647 Edited by Samuel Eliot Morrison 2 Volumes. New York: Russell and Russell, 1968. Print.
  9. Markale, J. Celtic Civilization. London: Gordon & Cremonesi, 1976. Print.
  10. 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.
  11. ...

The Charlton Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Charlton 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 4 June 2014 at 23:27.

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