Choate History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The Choate family had a variety of origins as variations of the name had several meanings in ancient England. The name could have meant "dweller at a Shoot or Shut, i.e. a narrow lane or avenue" from the Old English words "shoot" or "shut" or it could have been a name for an "archer" from the Old English word "scytta" and finally, it could have been a nickname for someone who was "quick" or "ready" from the Old English word "sceot." [1]

But the more likely origin of the name was as a local name from either Devon or Wiltshire.

Early Origins of the Choate family

The surname Choate was first found in Wiltshire at Chute, a civil parish that includes the village of Upper Chute and the smaller settlements of Lower Chute, Chute Standen, Chute Cadley and Chute Forest.

Alternatively the name could have originated from Shute, a parish, in the union of Axminster, hundred of Colyton in Devon. This place name dates back to c. 1200 when it was listed as Schieta and literally meant "the corner or angle of land." [2] The Old Shute House located nearby is now an impressive edifice that dates back to a simple building built in 1380. It is currently held by the National Trust. "The Shutes of Gillingham bear the name of an old Devonshire family and of a Devonshire parish." [3]

To confuse matters more, another source claims the family came from "the castle of Shute, in Normandy, France." [4]

Somerset was a stronghold of the family in early years as Kirby's Quest listed: Robert atte Shoete; Simon atte Sheote; William atte Shote; and Walter atte Shotte, Somerset as all residing there "1 Edward III," or in other words "during the first year's reign of King Edward III." [5]

Early History of the Choate family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Choate research. Another 178 words (13 lines of text) covering the years 1500, 1268, 1621, 1610, 1764, 1506, 1567, 1542, 1545, 1584, 1590, 1595, 1563, 1588, 1643, 1659, 1654, 1659, 1632, 1666, 1659, 1661, 1662, 1742, 1665, 1722, 1696 and 1698 are included under the topic Early Choate History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Choate Spelling Variations

Spelling variations of this family name include: Shute, Chute, Chewte, Shutes and others.

Early Notables of the Choate family (pre 1700)

Distinguished members of the family include Philip Chute or Chowte (c. 1506-1567), of Horne Place, Appledore, Kent, an English politician, Member of Parliament for Winchelsea 1542 and 1545; Sir Robert Chute, Justice of the Queen's Bench, 1584; Anthony Chute ( fl. 1590s; died 1595), an Elizabethan poet and pamphleteer; John Shute (d. 1563), an English artist and architect; Josias Shute (also Josiah) (1588-1643), an English churchman, rector of St Mary Woolnoth in London, Archdeacon of Colchester, and...
Another 76 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Choate Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Choate family to Ireland

Some of the Choate family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 43 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 Choate migration to the United States +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Choate Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • John Choate, who settled in Ipswich, Massachusetts in 1643
  • John Choate, who landed in Ipswich, Massachusetts in 1643 [6]
Choate Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Riduran Choate, who landed in Texas in 1835 [6]
  • Thomas Choate, who arrived in Texas in 1835 [6]
  • Mr. Choate, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1850 [6]

New Zealand Choate 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:

  • Mr. Joseph Choate, (b. 1856), aged 21, Cornish farm labourer departing on 19th November 1877 aboard the ship "Piako" going to Bluff or Otago, New Zealand arriving in port on 5th February 1878 [7]

Contemporary Notables of the name Choate (post 1700) +

  • George C. S. Choate (1827-1896), American physician and the founder of Choate House, a psychiatric sanatorium
  • Donald Leon "Don" Choate (1938-2018), American Major League Baseball player for the San Francisco Giants in 1960, he played in four games
  • Tim Choate (1954-2004), American actor
  • Mark Putnam "Putt" Choate (b. 1956), American former linebacker in the National Football League
  • Nathaniel Choate (1899-1965), American painter and sculptor, vice president of the National Sculpture Society
  • Pat Choate (b. 1941), American economist and political candidate, the 1996 Reform Party Vice President candidate, running-mate of H. Ross Perot
  • Matthew Choate (b. 1971), American politician, Member of the Vermont Senate from the Caledonia Vermont Senate District (2009-)
  • Mark Irvan Choate FRHistS, American history professor at Brigham Young University
  • Emett Clay Choate (1891-1974), American lawyer and a United States federal judge
  • Donald Leon Choate (b. 1938), American Major League Baseball pitcher who played four games for the San Francisco Giants in 1960
  • ... (Another 5 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)


The Choate 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: Fortune de guerre
Motto Translation: The fortune of war.


  1. ^ Harrison, Henry, Surnames of the United Kingdom: A Concise Etymological Dictionary Baltimore: Geneological Publishing Company, 2013. Print
  2. ^ Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
  3. ^ Guppy, Henry Brougham, Homes of Family Names in Great Britain. 1890. Print.
  4. ^ Arthur, William , An Etymological Dictionary of Family and Christian Names. London: 1857. Print
  5. ^ Dickinson, F.H., Kirby's Quest for Somerset of 16th of Edward the 3rd London: Harrison and Sons, Printers in Ordinary to Her Majesty, St, Martin's Lane, 1889. Print.
  6. ^ 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)
  7. ^ Cornwall Online Parish Clerks. (Retrieved 2018, April 30). Emigrants to other ports, 1872 - 84 [PDF]. Retrieved from http://www.opc-cornwall.org/Resc/pdfs/new_zealand_assisted.pdf


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