Ashman History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The history of the name Ashman begins in the days of the Anglo-Saxon tribes in Britain. It was a name for a an ancient Saxon name which meant warrior of the spear. Ash, another ancient Saxon name meant spear.

"In Anglo-Saxon poetry aesc or ash is constantly used in the sense of spear, because the staff of a spear was usually made of that wood. So the Latin ferrum signifies both iron and sword. Ashman is therefore the equivalent of spearman." [1]

"I take it that this name is the same as Asman, Osman, Osmon, Osmund (whence doubtless Houseman, Housman.)" [2]

"As the surname is found at Gorleston and in Rochford Hundred (Essex), it may sometimes be an occupation-name." [3]

Early Origins of the Ashman family

The surname Ashman was first found in the county of Wiltshire, where they held a family seat from very ancient times. Ash, in ancient Saxon meant "spear," therefore Ashman was a "spear warrior," " and perchance the same as Assemannus in Domesday Book; compare the place-names Ashmanhaugh, Ashmansworth, compounded with the name of the original tenant. " [4]

By the time of the Hundredorum Rolls of 1273, the family had scattered throughout early Britain: William Asseman, Suffolk; Peter Asseman, Cambridgeshire; Reginald Assheman, Suffolk; Walter Ascheman, Suffolk; and Henry Asscheman, Suffolk. [5]

In Norfolk, early records there show: Nicholas Ashman, bailiff of Yarmouth, 1299; and Robert Ashman, bailiff of Yarmouth, 1316. [6]

The singular Asseman, Asman was found in Huntingdonshire in the 13th century. John Essheman was found in the Assize Rolls for Kent in 1317. [3]

Early History of the Ashman family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Ashman research. Another 39 words (3 lines of text) covering the years 191 and 1916 are included under the topic Early Ashman History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ashman Spelling Variations

It is only in the last few hundred years that the English language has been standardized. For that reason, early Anglo-Saxon surnames like Ashman are characterized by many spelling variations. As the English language changed and incorporated elements of other European languages, even literate people changed the spelling of their names. The variations of the name Ashman include: Aschman, Ashman, Asheman, Asman and others.

Early Notables of the Ashman family (pre 1700)

More information is included under the topic Early Ashman Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ashman Ranking

In the United States, the name Ashman is the 13,864th most popular surname with an estimated 2,487 people with that name. [7]


United States Ashman migration to the United States +

Many English families tired of political and religious strife left Britain for the new colonies in North America. Although the trip itself offered no relief - conditions on the ships were extremely cramped, and many travelers arrived diseased, starving, and destitute - these immigrants believed the opportunities that awaited them were worth the risks. Once in the colonies, many of the families did indeed prosper and, in turn, made significant contributions to the culture and economies of the growing colonies. An inquiry into the early roots of North American families has revealed a number of immigrants bearing the name Ashman or a variant listed above:

Ashman Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • George Ashman, who landed in Maryland in 1670 [8]
Ashman Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Abraham Ashman, who landed in Pennsylvania in 1743 [8]
  • J Henry Ashman, who arrived in Pennsylvania in 1754 [8]
  • Henry Ashman, who settled in Philadelphia in 1754
Ashman Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • James Ashman, who arrived in Philadelphia in 1814
  • Wolfgang Ashman, who landed in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1856 [8]
  • James Ashman, who landed in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1860 [8]

Canada Ashman migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Ashman Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century

Australia Ashman migration to Australia +

Emigration to Australia followed the First Fleets of convicts, tradespeople and early settlers. Early immigrants include:

Ashman Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Miss Susannah Ashman, British Convict who was convicted in Bristol, England for 7 years, transported aboard the "Earl Cornwallis" in August 1800, arriving in New South Wales, Australia [10]
  • Mr. George Ashman, English convict who was convicted in Devon, England for 7 years, transported aboard the "Claudine" on 19th August 1829, arriving in New South Wales, Australia [11]
  • Mr. Aron Ashman, English convict who was convicted in Berkshire, England for 14 years, transported aboard the "Camden" on 21st September 1832, arriving in New South Wales, Australia [12]
  • Mr. Francis Ashman, (b. 1818), aged 20, English convict who was convicted in Somerset, England for 15 years for robbery, transported aboard the "Earl Grey" on 27th July 1838, arriving in New South Wales, Australia [13]

New Zealand Ashman 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:

Ashman Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Mr. Ashman, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "William Watson" arriving in New Plymouth, Taranaki, North Island, New Zealand on 30th December 1857 [14]
  • Mrs. Ashman, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "William Watson" arriving in New Plymouth, Taranaki, North Island, New Zealand on 30th December 1857 [14]

West Indies Ashman migration to West Indies +

The British first settled the British West Indies around 1604. They made many attempts but failed in some to establish settlements on the Islands including Saint Lucia and Grenada. By 1627 they had managed to establish settlements on St. Kitts (St. Christopher) and Barbados, but by 1641 the Spanish had moved in and destroyed some of these including those at Providence Island. The British continued to expand the settlements including setting the First Federation in the British West Indies by 1674; some of the islands include Barbados, Bermuda, Cayman Island, Turks and Caicos, Jamaica and Belize then known as British Honduras. By the 1960's many of the islands became independent after the West Indies Federation which existed from 1958 to 1962 failed due to internal political conflicts. After this a number of Eastern Caribbean islands formed a free association. [15]
Ashman Settlers in West Indies in the 17th Century
  • George Ashman who settled in Barbados in 1654

Contemporary Notables of the name Ashman (post 1700) +

  • Anastasia M. Ashman (b. 1964), American author
  • Howard Ashman (1950-1991), American playwright and movie music lyricist
  • W. T. Ashman, American Republican politician, Delegate to Republican National Convention from New York, 1868 [16]
  • R. Frederick Ashman, American Republican politician, Member of Connecticut State House of Representatives from Warren; Elected 1918 [16]
  • Ron Ashman (1926-2004), English footballer
  • Matthew Ashman (1950-1995), English guitarist, best known for his work with Adam and the Ants
  • John Ashman (b. 1936), former English cricketer
  • George Allan Ashman (1928-2002), English footballer
  • Sir Herbert Ashman, English noble, created 1st Baronet Ashman in 1907
  • Noel Ashman, New York based movie producer and club owner
  • ... (Another 5 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Prince of Wales colliery
  • Mr. Thomas Ashman (b. 1845), Welsh coal miner who was working at the Prince of Wales Colliery in Abercarn, Wales on the 11th September 1878 when there was a coal mine explosion; he died [17]
RMS Lusitania
  • Mr. Henry Clifford Ashman, American 3rd Class passenger from Butte, Montana, USA, who sailed aboard the RMS Lusitania and survived the sinking [18]


  1. ^ Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  2. ^ Charnock, Richard, Stephen, Ludus Patronymicus of The Etymology of Curious Surnames. London: Trubner & Co., 60 Paternoster Row, 1868. Print.
  3. ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  4. ^ Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
  5. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  6. ^ Rye, Walter, A History of Norfolk. London: Elliot Stock, 62, Paternoster Row, 1885. Print
  7. ^ https://namecensus.com/most_common_surnames.htm
  8. ^ 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)
  9. ^ Seary E.R., Family Names of the Island of Newfoundland, Montreal: McGill's-Queen's Universtity Press 1998 ISBN 0-7735-1782-0
  10. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 13th August 2021). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/earl-cornwallis
  11. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 18th February 2021). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/claudine
  12. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 2nd December 2020). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/camden
  13. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 17th August 2021). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/earl-grey
  14. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 26th March 2019). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html
  15. ^ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/British_West_Indies
  16. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, October 8) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html
  17. ^ Entombed in flood and flame (retrieved 3rd August 2021). Retrieved from https://web.archive.org/web/20120603025705/http://www.crosskeys.me.uk/history/prince.htm
  18. ^ Lusitania Passenger List - The Lusitania Resource. (Retrieved 2014, March 7) . Retrieved from http://www.rmslusitania.info/lusitania-passenger-list/


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