Chitwood History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The ancient history of the Chitwood name begins with the ancient Anglo-Saxon tribes of Britain. The name is derived from when the family resided in Chetwood, a parish, in the union, hundred, and county of Buckingham. "The church, made parochial in 1480, is remarkable for some beautiful specimens of stained glass, formerly belonging to a priory of Augustine monks, founded by Sir Ralph de Norwich in 1244, and which was dissolved on account of its poverty in 1460, and annexed to the abbey of Nutley. There was also a hermitage dedicated to St. Stephen and St. Lawrence, founded by a member of the Chetwode family, the representative of which claims suit and service, by prescriptive right, over this place and some neighbouring hamlets, that are said to have been included within the limits of an ancient forest of 1000 acres, called Rockwood." [1]

Early Origins of the Chitwood family

The surname Chitwood was first found in Buckinghamshire where they descend from Robert de Thain, who held Chetwode under the Bishop of Baieux in the time of William the Conqueror. John de Chetwode during the reign of Edward III married the heiress of Oakley, of Oakley of Staffordshire. "This manor of Chetwode, as appears to me, has been in the possession and inheritance of the Chetwodes longer than any estate or manor in this county of Buckingham has continued the property of any other family now there existing." [2] "Sir John Chetwode, Bart., is lord of the manor, and principal landed proprietor [of Lower Whitley, Cheshire]." [1]

Early History of the Chitwood family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Chitwood research. Another 92 words (7 lines of text) covering the years 1650, 1720, 1720 and 1797 are included under the topic Early Chitwood History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Chitwood Spelling Variations

Until quite recently, the English language has lacked a definite system of spelling rules. Consequently, Anglo-Saxon surnames are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations. Changes in Anglo-Saxon names were influenced by the evolution of the English language, as it incorporated elements of French, Latin, and other languages. Although Medieval scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded, so it is common to find one person referred to by several different spellings of his surname, even the most literate people varied the spelling of their own names. Variations of the name Chitwood include Chetwode, Chetwood, Chetwoode, Chitwood, Chitwode and others.

Early Notables of the Chitwood family (pre 1700)

Distinguished members of the family include Knightly Chetwood (1650-1720), Dean of Gloucester, the eldest son of Valentine Chetwode or Chetwood, by Mary, daughter of Francis Shute, esq. of Upton, Leicestershire, and grandson of Richard Chetwode, esq. of Oakley in Staffordshire...
Another 39 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Chitwood Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Chitwood family to Ireland

Some of the Chitwood family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 44 words (3 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Chitwood migration to the United States +

Searching for a better life, many English families migrated to British colonies. Unfortunately, the majority of them traveled under extremely harsh conditions: overcrowding on the ships caused the majority of the immigrants to arrive diseased, famished, and destitute from the long journey across the ocean. For those families that arrived safely, modest prosperity was attainable, and many went on to make invaluable contributions to the development of the cultures of the new colonies. Research into the origins of individual families in North America revealed records of the immigration of a number of people bearing the name Chitwood or a variant listed above:

Chitwood Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • William Chitwood, who landed in Virginia in 1636 [3]
  • William Chitwood, who settled in Virginia in 1636
  • John Chitwood, who settled in Barbados in 1694
Chitwood Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Mary Chitwood, who arrived in Virginia in 1702 [3]
Chitwood Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • Sophia Chitwood, who arrived in New York in 1904 aboard the ship "Arabic" from Liverpool, England [4]
  • Oliver Chitwood, aged 38, who arrived in New York in 1913 aboard the ship "Patricia" from Hamburg, Germany [5]
  • Agnes Chitwood, aged 26, who arrived in New York in 1913 aboard the ship "Patricia" from Hamburg, Germany [6]

Contemporary Notables of the name Chitwood (post 1700) +

  • Joie Chitwood III, American President and Chief Operating Officer of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway
  • William Hewlitt "Bill" Chitwood (b. 1891), American fiddle player from Resaca, Georgia
  • Christina Chitwood (b. 1990), American ice dancer
  • George Rice "Joie" Chitwood (1912-1988), American racecar driver and founding daredevil in the Joie Chitwood Thrill Show
  • Walter Randolph "Ranny" Chitwood, American cardiothoracic surgeon
  • Joseph Howard Chitwood (b. 1877), American Democrat politician, Member of Virginia State House of Delegates, 1907-08; U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Virginia, 1920-21, 1934-40 [7]
  • H. H. Chitwood, American Republican politician, Delegate to Republican National Convention from Tennessee, 1932 [7]
  • Elizabeth Chitwood, American Democrat politician, Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Virginia, 2008 [7]
  • Chad Chitwood, American Democrat politician, Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Missouri, 2004 [7]


The Chitwood 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: Corona mea Christus
Motto Translation: Christ is my crown.


Suggested Readings for the name Chitwood +

  • 4950 "1988 Update of the Family of Squire and Mary Wray Chitwood" by Margaret C. Pope, "Chitwood Family (and Related Lines)" by Jean Cragun Tombaugh.

  1. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  2. ^ Shirley, Evelyn Philip, The Noble and Gentle Men of England; The Arms and Descents. Westminster: John Bower Nichols and Sons, 1866, Print.
  3. ^ Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
  4. ^ "New York Passenger Arrival Lists (Ellis Island), 1892-1924," database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:JN9H-BPV : 6 December 2014), Sophia Chitwood, 18 Sep 1904; citing departure port Liverpool, arrival port New York, ship name Arabic, NARA microfilm publication T715 and M237 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.).
  5. ^ "New York Passenger Arrival Lists (Ellis Island), 1892-1924," database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:JNY6-K4X : 6 December 2014), Oliver Chitwood, 11 Sep 1913; citing departure port Hamburg, arrival port New York, ship name Patricia, NARA microfilm publication T715 and M237 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.).
  6. ^ "New York Passenger Arrival Lists (Ellis Island), 1892-1924," database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:JNY6-K4F : 6 December 2014), Agnes Chitwood, 11 Sep 1913; citing departure port Hamburg, arrival port New York, ship name Patricia, NARA microfilm publication T715 and M237 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.).
  7. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, October 21) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html


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