Wight History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The bearers of Wight and its variants are generally thought to have come from the noble family of Le Blancs in Normandy, who traveled to England in the wake of the Norman Conquest. Although the name certainly came to Britain from Normandy, there is some speculation that it already existed in Britain prior to the conquest. The word "white" itself is derived from the Old English word "hwit." This name was most likely originally used as a nickname for a person with white hair or a pale complexion.

Early Origins of the Wight family

The surname Wight was first found in Durham, but we must look to South Warnborough in Southampton for one of the most interesting stories about the family. "The church is very ancient, with a fine Norman arch at the entrance; in the chancel is a curious monument to Sir Thomas White and his family. Tradition says that Queen Elizabeth, when residing at Odiham, rode over to the manor-house here, and after partaking of breakfast with the above-mentioned Thomas White, knighted him in his own saloon." [1]

Early History of the Wight family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Wight research. Another 191 words (14 lines of text) covering the years 1106, 1086, 1172, 1327, 1236, 1560, 1585, 1579, 1656, 1593, 1676, 1628, 1698, 1685, 1690, 1630, 1686, 1620, 1704, 1657, 1656, 1172 and are included under the topic Early Wight History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Wight Spelling Variations

Spelling variations of this family name include: White, Whyte, Wight and others.

Early Notables of the Wight family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was John White (c.1585), an English painter and cartographer who was sent to Roanoke Island (now in North Carolina) as artist, mapmaker, and later as governor; Andrew White (1579-1656), a Jesuit theology professor who went to Maryland as the head of a band of missionaries; Thomas White (1593-1676), an English Roman Catholic priest and scholar, known as a theologian, censured by the Inquisition; Thomas...
Another 70 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Wight Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Wight family to Ireland

Some of the Wight family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 114 words (8 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Wight migration to the United States +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Wight Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Hannah Wight, who arrived at Watertown, Massachusetts in 1635-1636
  • Thomas Wight, who landed in Dedham, Massachusetts in 1639 [2]
  • Henry Wight, who arrived in New England in 1647 [2]
  • Marke Wight, who landed in Virginia in 1650 [2]
Wight Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Edward John Wight, age 17, who settled in Maryland in 1735
  • Elizabeth Wight, aged 21, who arrived in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1775 [2]
Wight Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Walter Wight, aged 49, who arrived in New York in 1812 [2]
  • George Wight, who landed in New York in 1820 [2]
  • Matthew Wight, who arrived in New York in 1820 [2]

New Zealand Wight migration to New Zealand +

Emigration to New Zealand followed in the footsteps of the European explorers, such as Captain Cook (1769-70): first came sealers, whalers, missionaries, and traders. By 1838, the British New Zealand Company had begun buying land from the Maori tribes, and selling it to settlers, and, after the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840, many British families set out on the arduous six month journey from Britain to Aotearoa to start a new life. Early immigrants include:

Wight Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • David Wight, aged 24, a carpenter, who arrived in Port Nicholson aboard the ship "Slains Castle" in 1841
  • Mary Wight, aged 27, who arrived in Port Nicholson aboard the ship "Slains Castle" in 1841
  • Isabella Wight, aged 8 months, who arrived in Port Nicholson aboard the ship "Slains Castle" in 1841
  • Mr. David Wight, (b. 1816), aged 24, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "Slains Castle" arriving in Wellington, New Zealand on 25th January 1841 [3]
  • Mrs. Mary Wight, (b. 1813), aged 27, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "Slains Castle" arriving in Wellington, New Zealand on 25th January 1841 [3]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Contemporary Notables of the name Wight (post 1700) +

  • William Wight, American Republican politician, Candidate for U.S. Representative from Washington 3rd District, 1988 [4]
  • Pearl Wight, American Republican politician, Delegate to Republican National Convention from Louisiana, 1908; Member of Republican National Committee from Louisiana, 1908 [4]
  • Ira E. Wight Jr., American Republican politician, Delegate to Republican National Convention from Missouri, 1956 [4]
  • Fred W. Wight, American politician, U.S. Collector of Customs, 1909 [4]
  • Emerson Wight (1815-1890), American Republican politician, Mayor of Springfield, Massachusetts, 1875-78 [4]
  • Charles L. Wight, American politician, U.S. Consular Agent in Mahukona, 1882-95 [4]
  • Charles H. Wight, American Republican politician, Candidate for New York State Assembly from Kings County 11th District, 1904 [4]
  • Amherst Wight Jr., American politician, Member of New York State Assembly from Westchester County 2nd District, 1873-74 [4]
  • A. W. Wight, American Republican politician, Alternate Delegate to Republican National Convention from West Virginia, 1900 [4]
  • Paul Wight (b. 1972), American actor, known for his roles in WWE Smackdown! (1999), WWF Raw (1993) and The Waterboy (1998)
  • ... (Another 11 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)


  1. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  2. ^ Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
  3. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 26th March 2019). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html
  4. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2016, January 18) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html


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