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An excerpt from archives copyright © 2000 - 2016

The ancestors of the name Caton date back to the days of the Anglo-Saxon tribes of Britain. The name is derived from their residence in Yorkshire.


Caton has been spelled many different ways, including Before English spelling became standardized over the last few hundred years, spelling variations in names were a common occurrence. As the English language changed in the Middle Ages, absorbing pieces of Latin and French, as well as other languages, the spelling of people's names also changed considerably, even over a single lifetime. Caton, Catton, Cattan, Catten, Caten and others.

First found in Norfolk where they held a family seat from very ancient times, some say well before the Norman Conquest and the arrival of Duke William at Hastings in 1066 A.D.


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Caton research. Another 189 words (14 lines of text) covering the years 1296, 1636 and 1665 are included under the topic Early Caton History in all our PDF Extended History products.


Another 21 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Caton Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.


In an attempt to escape the chaos experienced in England, many English families boarded overcrowded and diseased ships sailing for the shores of North America and other British colonies. Those families hardy enough, and lucky enough, to make the passage intact were rewarded with land and a social environment less prone to religious and political persecution. Many of these families became important contributors to the young colonies in which they settled. Early immigration and passenger lists have documented some of the first Catons to arrive on North American shores:

Caton Settlers in United States in the 17th Century

  • Richard Caton who settled in Virginia in 1635
  • Rich Caton, aged 26, landed in Virginia in 1635
  • William Caton, who landed in Maryland in 1674
  • Isaac Caton, who landed in Carolina in 1679

Caton Settlers in United States in the 18th Century

  • William Caton settled in Maryland in 1735
  • John Caton, who arrived in America in 1798

Caton Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • Richard Caton, who arrived in America in 1806
  • Pat Caton, aged 19, landed in New York in 1854

Caton Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century

  • James Caton, who landed in Nova Scotia in 1818

Caton Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century

  • Joseph Caton, a gardener, arrived in Van Diemenís Land (now Tasmania) sometime between 1825 and 1832

Caton Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century

  • H. Caton arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "William" in 1853


  • Lawrence "Larry" Ray Caton (b. 1948), American former handball player at the 1972 Summer Olympics
  • Hiram Pendleton Caton III (1936-2010), American Professor of politics and history at Griffith University, Brisbane, Australia
  • Noah Winston Caton (1897-1922), American football player and track star, brother of Eugene Caton
  • Eugene Leon Caton (1889-1979), American college football player and coach of the Howard Bulldogs in 1915
  • Gregory James Caton (b. 1956), American businessman, inventor, manufacturer and promoter of various herbal products
  • John Dean Caton (1812-1895), American associate justice and chief justice of the Illinois Supreme Court; Abraham Lincoln was an attourney in 214 of his presidings
  • John D. Caton, American politician, Justice of Illinois State Supreme Court, 1842-43, 1843-64
  • Homer Caton (b. 1887), American Republican politician, Member of Illinois State House of Representatives 26th District, 1941
  • Harry Aaron Caton (1870-1949), American politician, Mayor of Winfield, Kansas, 1901-02
  • A. S. Caton, American politician, Prohibition Candidate for U.S. Representative from Washington at-large, 1906



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: Cautes metuit fovean lupus
Motto Translation: The cautious wolf fears the snare.


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  1. Shaw, William A. Knights of England A Complete Record from the Earliest Time to the Present Day of the Knights of all the Orders of Chivalry in England, Scotland, Ireland and Knights Bachelors 2 Volumes. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print. (ISBN 080630443X).
  2. Filby, P. William and Mary K Meyer. Passenger and Immigration Lists Index in Four Volumes. Detroit: Gale Research, 1985. Print. (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8).
  3. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  4. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  5. Magnusson, Magnus. Chambers Biographical Dictionary 5th edition. Edinburgh: W & R Chambers, 1990. Print.
  6. Bradford, William. History of Plymouth Plantation 1620-1647 Edited by Samuel Eliot Morrison 2 Volumes. New York: Russell and Russell, 1968. Print.
  7. Mills, A.D. Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4).
  8. Burke, John Bernard Ed. The Roll of Battle Abbey. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  9. Foster, Joseph. Dictionary of Heraldry Feudal Coats of Arms and Pedigrees. London: Bracken Books, 1989. Print. (ISBN 1-85170-309-8).
  10. Zieber, Eugene. Heraldry in America. Philadelphia: Genealogical Publishing Co. Print.
  11. ...

The Caton Family Crest was acquired from the archives. The Caton 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 17 February 2016 at 17:03.

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