Benway History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The place name, from which the Benway family take their surname arrived in Scotland with the Viking settlers. The first to use Benway as a name no doubt lived at Bennie, near the village of Braco in the parish of Logi-Almond in Perthshire. [1]

One noted author claims the family was originally Norman from "Beaunay, the fief so named in Normandy. John de Beaunay is mentioned by Orderic at the battle of Mortemer in 1055; and in 1080 Bernard de Beaunay, with Robert Malet and other Norman lords, witnessed a deed of William de Ros, third Abbot of Fecamp." [2]

Early Origins of the Benway family

The surname Benway was first found in Cumberland and Westmorland. The move of many of the family from northern England to Scotland is not documented. But we do know that "Hugh de Benne or Bennef witnessed charters by Gilchrist, earl of Angus, c. 1201-7. Hugh filius Hugonis de Benne witnessed a charter by Vmfridus de Berkelay to the Abbey of Arnbroath c. 1204-11, and as de Benne or Bennef attested a charter by William filius Bernardi." [1]

Back in northern England, Yorkshire is of particular note. There we find Ralph Benny in the Subsidy Rolls of 1301 [3] and later Johannes Benny was listed in the Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls of 1379. [4]

Jordan de Belnai, in 1165, held two fees of Earl Walter Giffard, in Buckinghamshire [5] and Hugh de Belne, according to the Testa de Nevill, held Belne, in Worcestershire, of the Baron of Dudley. [2]

Early History of the Benway family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Benway research. Another 101 words (7 lines of text) covering the years 1200, 1321, 1399, 1498, 1522, 1600, 1607 and 1800 are included under the topic Early Benway History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Benway Spelling Variations

Few standards of spelling and translation existed in the Middle Ages. spelling variations, are thus, an extremely common occurrence in records of ancient Scottish names. Over the years, Benway has been spelled Benny, Beny, Bennie, Bennee, Benne, Beney, Benney and others.

Early Notables of the Benway family (pre 1700)

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


United States Benway migration to the United States +

Land and opportunity greeted all those who made it across the Atlantic. These settlers and their children went on to play important roles in the forging of the great nations of the United States and Canada. Clan societies and other Scottish organizations have preserved much of this heritage for the ancestors of those brave Scots. Immigration and passenger lists have documented the arrival of various people bearing the name Benway to North America:

Benway Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • Addie Benway, aged 66, who immigrated to the United States, in 1913
  • Mabel Benway, aged 26, who immigrated to the United States, in 1913
  • Edward C. Benway, aged 30, who landed in America, in 1915
  • Thomas Henry Benway, aged 18, who settled in America, in 1918
  • Charles Peter Benway, aged 18, who landed in America, in 1922
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Contemporary Notables of the name Benway (post 1700) +

  • Robin Benway, American author of young adult novels from Orange County


The Benway Motto +

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: Virtute et opera
Motto Translation: By virtue and energy.


  1. ^ 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)
  2. ^ Cleveland, Dutchess of The Battle Abbey Roll with some Account of the Norman Lineages. London: John Murray, Abermarle Street, 1889. Print. Volume 3 of 3
  3. ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  4. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  5. ^ Liber Niger Scutarii ("Black Book of the Exchequer"), containing reports by county on feudal holdings in England in 1166 (reign of Henry II)


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