Catto History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms 

The Strathclyde-Briton people of ancient Scotland were the first to use the name Catto. The Catto family lived in Norfolk, England; or the name may also be from Chetel, an Old Norse and Old English given name.

Early Origins of the Catto family

The surname Catto was first found in Aberdeenshire (Gaelic: Siorrachd Obar Dheathain), a historic county, and present day Council Area of Aberdeen, located in the Grampian region of northeastern Scotland, where they held a family seat from very ancient times.

Important Dates for the Catto family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Catto research. Another 67 words (5 lines of text) covering the years 1403, 1597, and 1633 are included under the topic Early Catto History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Catto Spelling Variations

The variation in the spelling of Medieval names is a result of the lack of spelling rules in the English language prior to the last few hundred years. Before that time, scribes spelled according to sound, often varying the spelling of name within a single document. Catto has appeared as Catto, Cattoch, Cattow, Kitto, Citto, Chatto, Chattoch, Chetto, Cato and many more.

Early Notables of the Catto family (pre 1700)

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

Catto migration to the United States

As the persecution of Clan families continued, they sailed for North America in increasing numbers. In most cases, they found the freedom and opportunity they sought. Land was often available and the American War of Independence allowed Scots an opportunity to solidify their independence from the English crown. These settlers and their ancestors went on to play essential roles in the forging of the nations of the United States and Canada. Among them:

Catto Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • John Catto, who arrived in Philadelphia in 1754
  • William Catto, who arrived in Nevis in 1775
  • James Catto who settled in Maryland in 1775

Catto migration to New Zealand

Emigration to New Zealand followed in the footsteps of the European explorers, such as Captain Cook (1769-70): first came sealers, whalers, missionaries, and traders. By 1838, the British New Zealand Company had begun buying land from the Maori tribes, and selling it to settlers, and, after the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840, many British families set out on the arduous six month journey from Britain to Aotearoa to start a new life. Early immigrants include:

Catto Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Isabella Catto, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Abeona" in 1878

Contemporary Notables of the name Catto (post 1700)

  • William D. Catto, American United States Marine Corps major general, Chief of Staff of the United States European Command
  • Octavius Valentine Catto (1839-1871), American black educator, intellectual, and civil rights activist in Philadelphia
  • Henry Edward Catto Jr. (1930-2011), American politician, U.S. Ambassador to El Salvador, 1971-73; Great Britain, 1989-91; Director, U.S. Information Agency, 1991 [1]
  • C. G. Catto, American politician, Mayor of Waco, Texas, 1937 [1]
  • Thomas Sivewright Catto (1879-1959), 1st Baron Catto, Scottish businessman and later Governor of the Bank of England
  • Stephen Gordon Catto (1923-2001), 2nd Baron Catto, British banker and businessman
  • Jeremy Catto (b. 1939), British historian, former Rhodes Fellow and Tutor in Modern History, Oriel College, Oxford
  • Jamie Catto (b. 1968), British singer and songwriter

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  1. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, November 23) . Retrieved from
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