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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright 2000 - 2015

Where did the English Braxton family come from? What is the English Braxton family crest and coat of arms? When did the Braxton family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the Braxton family history?


Anglo-Norman names tend to be marked by an enormous number of spelling variations. This is largely due to the fact that Old and Middle English lacked any spelling rules when Norman French was introduced in the 11th century. The languages of the English courts at that time were French and Latin. These various languages mixed quite freely in the evolving social milieu. The final element of this mix is that medieval scribes spelled words according to their sounds rather than any definite rules, so a name was often spelled in as many different ways as the number of documents it appeared in. The name was spelled Barkston, Brakston, Braxton, Brackston, Barckston, Braxton, Barxton, Barkstead, Barksted and many more.

First found in Yorkshire where they held a family seat as Lords of the Manor in the West Riding. After the Battle of Hastings in 1066, William, Duke of Normandy, having prevailed over King Harold, granted most of Britain to his many victorious Barons. It was not uncommon to find a Baron, or a Bishop, with 60 or more Lordships scattered throughout the country. These he gave to his sons, nephews and other junior lines of his family and they became known as under-tenants. They adopted the Norman system of surnames which identified the under-tenant with his holdings so as to distinguish him from the senior stem of the family. After many rebellious wars between his Barons, Duke William, commissioned a census of all England to determine in 1086, settling once and for all, who held which land. He called the census the Domesday Book, [1] indicating that those holders registered would hold the land until the end of time. Hence, conjecturally, the surname is descended from the tenant of the lands of Barkston, held by Ilbert de Lacy as over-lord, a Norman Baron who was recorded in the Domesday Book census of 1086.


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Braxton research. Another 107 words(8 lines of text) covering the years 1219 and 1662 are included under the topic Early Braxton History in all our PDF Extended History products.


Another 37 words(3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Braxton Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.


Because of the political and religious discontent in England, families began to migrate abroad in enormous numbers. Faced with persecution and starvation at home, the open frontiers and generally less oppressive social environment of the New World seemed tantalizing indeed to many English people. The trip was difficult, and not all made it unscathed, but many of those who did get to Canada and the United States made important contributions to the young nations in which they settled. Some of the first North American settlers with Braxton name or one of its variants:

Braxton Settlers in United States in the 17th Century

  • Tho. Braxton, who settled in Virginia in 1635
  • Tho Braxton, aged 20, landed in Virginia in 1635
  • Robert Braxton, who arrived in Virginia in 1639
  • Robert Braxton, who settled in Virginia in 1639

Braxton Settlers in United States in the 18th Century

  • George Braxton, who arrived in Virginia in 1705
  • George Braxton, who landed in Virginia in 1705
  • Christipher Braxton, who arrived in Mississippi in 1798
  • Christipher Braxton, who came to Mississippi in 1798

Braxton Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • Charles J. Braxton, who came to Texas in 1841

Braxton Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century

  • Carter Braxton, who came to Ontario in 1871
  • Essex Braxton, who settled in Ontario in 1871


  • Carter Braxton (1736-1797), American signer of Declaration of Independence
  • Anthony Braxton (b. 1945), American musician & composer
  • Edward Braxton (b. 1944), American Roman Catholic Bishop of Belleville
  • Toni Braxton (b. 1967), American singer, recipient of six Grammy awards selling over 40 million records worldwide
  • Tamar Braxton (b. 1978), American R&B singer


  • A Braxton Family Genealogy: Descendants of John Braxton (1782-1860) and Mary Pol.
  • Love (1801-1844) by Boonie Woody Braxton.
  • The History of Blair, Banister, and Braxton Families Before and After the Revolution by Frederick Horner.

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  1. ^ Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)

Other References

  1. Innes, Thomas and Learney. The Tartans of the Clans and Families of Scotland 1st Edition. Edinburgh: W & A. K. Johnston Limited, 1938. Print.
  2. Mills, A.D. Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4).
  3. Foster, Joseph. Dictionary of Heraldry Feudal Coats of Arms and Pedigrees. London: Bracken Books, 1989. Print. (ISBN 1-85170-309-8).
  4. Dunkling, Leslie. Dictionary of Surnames. Toronto: Collins, 1998. Print. (ISBN 0004720598).
  5. Hitching, F.K and S. Hitching. References to English Surnames in 1601-1602. Walton On Thames: 1910. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0181-3).
  6. Holt, J.C. Ed. Domesday Studies. Woodbridge: Boydell, 1987. Print. (ISBN 0-85115-477-8).
  7. Bede, The Venerable. Historia Ecclesiatica Gentis Anglorum (The Ecclesiastical History Of the English People). Available through Internet Medieval Sourcebook the Fordham University Centre for Medieval Studies. Print.
  8. Bullock, L.G. Historical Map of England and Wales. Edinburgh: Bartholomew and Son, 1971. Print.
  9. Hanks, Patricia and Flavia Hodges. A Dictionary of Surnames. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988. Print. (ISBN 0-19-211592-8).
  10. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  11. ...

The Braxton Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Braxton Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

This page was last modified on 3 April 2015 at 19:07.

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