Blackney History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Blackney is a name that was carried to England in the great wave of migration from Normandy following the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Blackney family lived at Blakeney, in the county of Norfolk, or a place of the same name in Gloucester.

Early Origins of the Blackney family

The surname Blackney was first found in Norfolk at Blakeney, a small sea-port, post-town, and parish, in the union of Walsingham, hundred of Holt. "This place was called Snitterley in the time of Henry III., who granted it a market: it assumed its present name in the reign of Edward III." [1]

Blakeney consisted of seven villages whose tenant-in-chief was Earl Hugh of Chester. Some of these villages were submerged by the sea by the Middle Ages. Conjecturally, the Blakeneys are descended from the first early Norman noble who held his lands from Earl Hugh. One reference states "Blakeney is a parish in Norfolk, in which county the family had great possessions. " [2]

The first record of the family was found in the Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 where Adam de Blakeneye from London was listed. Later and further to the north, Johannes Blaunkeney was listed in the Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls of 1379. [3]

Nicholas de Blakney was listed in Norfolk in 1392 and later Elizabeth Blakney was listed there in 1515. [4]

Early History of the Blackney family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Blackney research. Another 99 words (7 lines of text) covering the years 1575, 1756, 1976, 1672, 1761, 1690, 1702, 1679, 1733, 1709, 1729 and 1721 are included under the topic Early Blackney History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Blackney Spelling Variations

Before the last few hundred years the English language had no fixed system of spelling rules. For that reason, spelling variations occurred commonly in Anglo Norman surnames. Over the years, many variations of the name Blackney were recorded, including Blakeney, Blakeny, Blackney, Blakney, Blakny, Blaknie, Blakenie, Blaykney, Blayknie, Blaikney and many more.

Early Notables of the Blackney family (pre 1700)

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

Ireland Migration of the Blackney family to Ireland

Some of the Blackney family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 178 words (13 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Blackney migration to the United States +

The unstable environment in England at this time caused numerous families to board ships and leave in search of opportunity and freedom from persecution abroad in places like Ireland, Australia, and particularly the New World. The voyage was extremely difficult, however, and only taken at great expense. The cramped conditions and unsanitary nature of the vessels caused many to arrive diseased and starving, not to mention destitute from the enormous cost. Still opportunity in the emerging nations of Canada and the United States was far greater than at home and many went on to make important contributions to the cultures of their adopted countries. An examination of many early immigration records reveals that people bearing the name Blackney arrived in North America very early:

Blackney Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • John Blackney who settled in Maryland in 1776

Canada Blackney migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Blackney Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • Samuel Blackney, aged 18, a labourer, who arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick in 1833 aboard the brig "Ugoni" from Belfast, Ireland

Australia Blackney migration to Australia +

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

Blackney Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • James Blackney, aged 22, who arrived in South Australia in 1854 aboard the ship "Thetis" [5]
  • Samuel Blackney, aged 43, who arrived in South Australia in 1854 aboard the ship "Standard" [6]
  • Mary J. Blackney, aged 18, a servant, who arrived in South Australia in 1854 aboard the ship "Standard" [6]

Contemporary Notables of the name Blackney (post 1700) +

  • William Wallace Blackney (1876-1963), American politician, United States Representative for the 6th Congressional District of Michigan (1935-1937) and (1939-1953)
  • Gary Blackney (b. 1944), American former head coach of the Bowling Green college football program from 1991-2000
  • William Wallace Blackney (1876-1963), American Republican politician, Member of Michigan Republican State Central Committee, 1925-30; U.S. Representative from Michigan 6th District, 1935-37, 1939-53; Defeated, 1922, 1936 [7]


The Blackney 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: Auxilium meum ab alto
Motto Translation: My help is from above.


  1. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  2. ^ Lowe, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  3. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  4. ^ Rye, Walter, A History of Norfolk. London: Elliot Stock, 62, Paternoster Row, 1885. Print
  5. ^ South Australian Register Friday 1st September 1854. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) Emigrant 1854. Retrieved http://www.theshipslist.com/ships/australia/thetis1854.shtml
  6. ^ South Australian Register Monday 18th December 1854. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) Standard 1854. Retrieved http://www.theshipslist.com/ships/australia/standard1854.shtml
  7. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2016, January 15) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html


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