Show ContentsAyton History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Early Origins of the Ayton family

The surname Ayton was first found in the county of Berwickshire, where Ayton is a small town "which takes its name from the water of Eye, on the banks of which it is situated, is intimately connected with important transactions of early times. It was formerly dependent on the monastery of Coldingham, as appears from charters belonging to that establishment, upon the settlement of which, between the years 1098 and 1107, under the auspices of King Edgar, that monarch made them several grants, including "Eytun" and "aliam Eytun," the latter being Nether Ayton, on the opposite side of the river." [1]

One of the first records of the name was William de Eytone who rendered homage to King Edward I in 1296. [2]

Early History of the Ayton family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Ayton research. Another 252 words (18 lines of text) covering the years 1170, 1296, 1440, 1672, 1440, 1887, 1570, 1638, 1460, 1488, 1488, 1513 and 1644 are included under the topic Early Ayton History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ayton Spelling Variations

During the era when a person's name, tribe and posterity was one of his most important possessions, many different spellings were found in the archives examined. Ayton occurred in many references, and spelling variations of the name found included Aiton, Ayton, Aytoun and others.

Early Notables of the Ayton family (pre 1700)

Notable amongst the family name during their early history was Sir Robert Ayton or Aytoun (1570-1638), English poet, who was also a private secretary to the queens of James I and Charles I. He "was a descendant of the Norman house of De Vescy, lords of Sprouston in Northumberland. Gilbert de Vescy, a younger son of the family, settled in Scotland in the reign of King Robert Bruce, having received from him the lands of Aytoun in Berwickshire. Thereupon he changed his name to that of his estate. " [3] "In Berwickshire the Aytouns continued as landowners until James III (1460-1488), when...
Another 108 words (8 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Ayton Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

United States Ayton migration to the United States +

Gradually becoming disenchanted with life in Ireland many of these uprooted families sailed aboard the armada of sailing ships known as the "White Sails" which plied the stormy Atlantic. These overcrowded ships often arrived with only 60 to 70% of their original passenger list, many dying of illness and the elements, were buried at sea. In North America, early immigrants bearing the family name Ayton, or a spelling variation of the surname include:

Ayton Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • James Ayton, who settled in Virginia in 1716

Australia Ayton migration to Australia +

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

Ayton Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Mr. Edward Ayton, (b. 1810), aged 27, English convict who was convicted in Norfolk, England for 7 years for stealing, transported aboard the "Blenheim" on 11th March 1837, arriving in Tasmania (Van Diemen's Land), he died in 1875 [4]
  • Henry Ayton, aged 21, a miner, who arrived in South Australia in 1856 aboard the ship "Nabob"

Contemporary Notables of the name Ayton (post 1700) +

  • Richard Ayton (1786-1823), English dramatist and miscellaneous writer, born in London in 1786; his father, was son of William Ayton, banker in Lombard Street [5]
  • Sarah Ayton (b. 1980), British professional sailor, who won a gold medal in the 2004 Summer Olympics
  • William Alexander Ayton (1816-1909), British Anglican clergyman
  • Sir Robert Ayton (1570-1638), Scottish poet and courtier

HMAS Sydney II
  • Mr. Leslie George Ayton (1917-1941), Australian Ordnance Artificer 4th Class from Sunshine, Victoria, Australia, who sailed into battle aboard HMAS Sydney II and died in the sinking [6]
HMS Cornwall
  • Albert James Ayton (d. 1942), British Marine aboard the HMS Cornwall when she was struck by air bombers and sunk; he died in the sinking [7]

  1. Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  2. 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)
  3. Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print
  4. Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 15th October 2020). Retrieved from
  5. Wikisource contributors. "Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900." Wikisource . Wikisource , 4 Jun. 2018. Web. 6 June 2019
  6. HMAS Sydney II, Finding Sydney Foundation - Roll of Honour. (Retrieved 2014, April 24) . Retrieved from
  7. Force Z Survivors Crew List HMS Cornwall (Retrieved 2018, February 13th) - Retrieved from on Facebook