Altanstolm History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
In ancient Scotland, Altanstolm was a Strathclyde-Briton name for someone who lived in Cumberland. Alternatively, the name could have been from the Old Norse, Hallstein; from the Flemish, Alsteens and appeared in the Domesday Book of 1086 as Alstan, Alestan; a personal name. 
In England, the name was derived from "als-ton, the hill by the sea-shore,"  and as Alston(e) appears as at least five different parishes or townships.
Early Origins of the Altanstolm family
The surname Altanstolm was first found in Cumberland, where they held the manor of Aldanstone. One of the first records of the name was "Jurdan de Aldanston [who] was juror on an inquisition held at Berwick on the lands of Lady Elena de la Zuche lying in the sheriffdom of Edinburgh, 1296." 
In the same year, Andreu de Haldanstone of Edinburghshire rendered homage to King Edward I after his conquest of Scotland. In the same century, the name had often been shortened to Alston, and in some cases lengthened to Haldanston. The Scottish branch at Craig Head in Lanarkshire and at Westerton in Dumbartonshire also assumed the spelling of Auldston and Alstounes.
Early History of the Altanstolm family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Altanstolm research. Another 158 words (11 lines of text) covering the years 1667, 1681, 1683, 1684, 1687 and 1905 are included under the topic Early Altanstolm History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Altanstolm Spelling Variations
Prior to the first dictionaries, scribes spelled words according to sound. This, and the fact that Scottish names were repeatedly translated from Gaelic to English and back, contributed to the enormous number of spelling variations in Scottish names. Altanstolm has been spelled Aldanston, Alston, Auldston, Alstounes, Alstone, Alstowne, Aldenston and many more.
Early Notables of the Altanstolm family
Notable amongst the family at this time was Charles Alston (1683-160), a Scottish scientific writer, born at Eddlewood, and educated at Glasgow. "On his father's death...
Another 26 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Altanstolm Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Altanstolm family to Ireland
Some of the Altanstolm family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. More information about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Altanstolm family
In such difficult times, the difficulties of raising the money to cross the Atlantic to North America did not seem so large compared to the problems of keeping a family together in Scotland. It was a journey well worth the cost, since it was rewarded with land and freedom the Scots could not find at home. The American War of Independence solidified that freedom, and many of those settlers went on to play important parts in the forging of a great nation. Among them: Samuel and William Alston settled in Charles Town [Charleston], South Carolina in 1767; John Alston settled in Barbados in 1685; Rose Alston settled in New England in 1661. In Newfoundland, John Alston an immigrant from Liverpool, was married in St. John's in 1858..
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 Translation: Immoveable.
- Barber, Henry, British Family Names London: Elliot Stock, 62 Paternoster Row, 1894. Print.
- Charnock, Richard, Stephen, Ludus Patronymicus of The Etymology of Curious Surnames. London: Trubner & Co., 60 Paternoster Row, 1868. Print.
- Black, George F., The Surnames of Scotland Their Origin, Meaning and History. New York: New York Public Library, 1946. Print. (ISBN 0-87104-172-3)