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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright 2000 - 2016

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

The ancestry of the name Covington dates from the ancient Anglo-Saxon culture of Britain. It comes from when the family lived at Covington in Huntingdon. The name was a habitational name having derived from the Old English "Cofingtun" which meant "Cofa's settlement." [1] Covington dates back to the Domesday Book of 1086 where it was first listed as Covintune. [2]


Spelling variations in names were a common occurrence before English spelling was standardized a few hundred years ago. In the Middle Ages, even the literate spelled their names differently as the English language incorporated elements of French, Latin, and other European languages. Many variations of the name Covington have been found, including Covington, Colvaynston and others.

First found in at Covington in Huntingdon (now part of Cambridgeshire.) There is also a Scottish branch that had an earliest record of the 12th century. How the two origins are related is uncertain. This latter Scottish branch was found at Covinton (Covington) in Lanarkshire where the name was probably derived from the Latin for "Villa Colbani." However, spelling changes were frequent as seen by Thomas de Colbainestun who witnessed a charter by William the Lion in Dumfriesshire c. 1187 and Thomas de Colbaynstun who witnessed the resignation of lands of Ingilbristoun in 1204.


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Covington research. Another 245 words (18 lines of text) covering the years 1120, 1204, 1296 and 1304 are included under the topic Early Covington History in all our PDF Extended History products.


More information is included under the topic Early Covington Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.


Families began migrating abroad in enormous numbers because of the political and religious discontent in England. Often faced with persecution and starvation in England, the possibilities of the New World attracted many English people. Although the ocean trips took many lives, those who did get to North America were instrumental in building the necessary groundwork for what would become for new powerful nations. Some of the first immigrants to cross the Atlantic and come to North America bore the name Covington, or a variant listed above:

Covington Settlers in United States in the 17th Century

  • Thomas Covington and his wife Ann who received a land patent in Maryland in 1665
  • Tho Covington, who arrived in Virginia in 1665
  • Thomas Covington, who landed in Maryland in 1665
  • Arthur Covington, who came to Virginia in 1683

Covington Settlers in United States in the 18th Century

  • Peter Covington, an English convict who was sent to Maryland in 1725
  • Richard Covington, who arrived in Virginia in 1768

Covington Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • E. Covington, who arrived on a ship in San Francisco in 1852
  • Susan Covington, aged 13, arrived in New York in 1864
  • Susannah Covington, aged 49, landed in New York in 1864
  • William H Covington, who arrived in New York in 1864


  • Joseph "Joey" Edward Covington (1945-2013), American drummer, best known for his work with Hot Tuna and Jefferson Airplane
  • Chief Petty Officer Jesse Whitfield Covington (1889-1966), American sailor awarded the Medal of Honor
  • James Harry Covington (1863-1939), American jurist and politician
  • Wickliffe Covington (1867-1938), American painter
  • Dennis Covington (b. 1948), American writer
  • Damien Covington (1972-2002), professional American football player
  • Chet Covington (1910-1976), American Major League Baseball pitcher
  • Warren Lewis Covington (1921-1999), American jazz trombonist
  • Jerry Covington (b. 1921), American geologist
  • Garrett Christopher Covington (b. 1909), American aeronautical engineer



  • Covington and Allied Families of the Northern Neck of Virginia by Robert Edward Dungan.
  • Covington and Kin by Elbert E. Covington.

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  1. ^ Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
  2. ^ 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. Foster, Joseph. Dictionary of Heraldry Feudal Coats of Arms and Pedigrees. London: Bracken Books, 1989. Print. (ISBN 1-85170-309-8).
  2. Skordas, Guest. Ed. The Early Settlers of Maryland an Index to Names or Immigrants Complied from Records of Land Patents 1633-1680 in the Hall of Records Annapolis, Maryland. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1968. Print.
  3. Humble, Richard. The Fall of Saxon England. New York: Barnes and Noble, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-88029-987-8).
  4. Holt, J.C. Ed. Domesday Studies. Woodbridge: Boydell, 1987. Print. (ISBN 0-85115-477-8).
  5. Crozier, William Armstrong Edition. Crozier's General Armory A Registry of American Families Entitled to Coat Armor. New York: Fox, Duffield, 1904. Print.
  6. 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).
  7. Hanks, Patricia and Flavia Hodges. A Dictionary of Surnames. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988. Print. (ISBN 0-19-211592-8).
  8. Burke, John Bernard Ed. The Roll of Battle Abbey. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  9. Chadwick, Nora Kershaw and J.X.W.P Corcoran. The Celts. London: Penguin, 1790. Print. (ISBN 0140212116).
  10. Burke, Sir Bernard. Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Peerage and Baronetage, The Privy Council, Knightage and Compainonage. London: Burke Publishing, 1921. Print.
  11. ...

The Covington Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Covington 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 13 January 2016 at 10:25.

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