Show ContentsCrichton History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The ancestors of the first family to use the name Crichton were thought to have lived among the Boernician tribe of ancient Scotland. They lived near a border. This surname came from the Gaelic word crioch and the Old English word tune, which mean border and farm or settlement, respectively. Thus, the surname indicates that the original bearer lived near a border. The name may also have derived from a place name, such as Crichton, near Edinburgh, or the territories of Kreiton in Lothian.

Early Origins of the Crichton family

The surname Crichton was first found in Midlothian, 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. The first on record was Turstan Crectune, who was granted lands by King David of Scotland in 1128. Alexander and Thomas Creighton both having territories in Berwickshire rendered homage to King Edward I of England on his brief conquest of Scotland, in 1296. [1]

Early History of the Crichton family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Crichton research. Another 177 words (13 lines of text) covering the years 1514, 1450, 1585, 1543, 1612, 1598, 1691, 1560, 1582, 1902, 1797 and are included under the topic Early Crichton History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Crichton Spelling Variations

Before the printing press and the first dictionaries appeared, names and other words were often spelled differently every time they were written. Crichton has appeared under the variations Crichton, Creighton, Creaton, Craighton, Creton, Creeton, Crichten, Crighton, Chreichton, Creichtone, Creychton, Creychtoun and many more.

Early Notables of the Crichton family (pre 1700)

Notable amongst the family at this time was Lord Crichton, Viscount Frendraught; William Crichton, 1st Lord Crichton of Sanquhar (died 1450s) ; Robert Crichton (died 1585), Catholic cleric, nephew of George Crichton, (d. 1543), Bishop of Dunkeld; and Robert Crichton, 6th Lord Sanquhar (died 1612); William Crichton (1598-1691), 2nd Earl of Dumfries; and James Crichton of Clunie (1560-1582), better known as the Admirable...
Another 62 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Crichton Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Crichton Ranking

In the United States, the name Crichton is the 12,244th most popular surname with an estimated 2,487 people with that name. [2]

Ireland Migration of the Crichton family to Ireland

Some of the Crichton family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 80 words (6 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

United States Crichton migration to the United States +

The Scots who crossed the Atlantic were often on the run from poverty as well as persecution. They brought little with them, and often had nothing of their home country to hand down to their children. In the 20th century, Clan societies and other patriotic Scottish organizations have helped the ancestors of Boernician Scots to recover their lost national legacy. Many of those families went on to make significant contributions to the rapidly developing colonies in which they settled. Early North American records indicate many people bearing the name Crichton were among those contributors:

Crichton Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • John Crichton, who arrived in New Jersey in 1685 [3]
  • John Crichton who settled in New Jersey in 1686
Crichton Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Ann Crichton, aged 28, who arrived in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1774 [3]
Crichton Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • James Crichton, who landed in New York in 1810 [3]
  • James Crichton, who settled in New York in 1820
  • Robert Crichton, who landed in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1850 [3]
  • Alexander William Crichton, who landed in Florida in 1854 [3]

Australia Crichton migration to Australia +

Emigration to Australia followed the First Fleets of convicts, tradespeople and early settlers. Early immigrants include:

Crichton Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Mr. William Crichton, (b. 1813), aged 17, Scottish convict who was convicted in Glasgow, Scotland for 7 years for stealing, transported aboard the "Florentia" on 11th August 1830, arriving in New South Wales, Australia [4]
  • Miss Margaret Crichton who was convicted in Perth, Scotland for 7 years, transported aboard the "Cadet" on 4th September 1847, arriving in Tasmania (Van Diemen's Land) [5]

New Zealand Crichton 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:

Crichton Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Robert Crichton, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Mermaid" in 1859 [6]
  • John Crichton, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Mermaid" in 1859 [6]
  • Alexander Crichton, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Nimroud" in 1860
  • Mr. Thomas Crichton, (b. 1845), aged 18, British ploughman travelling from London, UK aboard the ship "Brothers Pride" arriving in Lyttelton, South Island, New Zealand on 8th December 1863 [7]
  • Mr. William Crichton, (b. 1842), aged 32, Scottish shepherd, from Perth travelling from Greenock aboard the ship "Nelson" arriving in Port Chalmers, Dunedin, Otago, South Island, New Zealand on 31st December 1874 [7]

Contemporary Notables of the name Crichton (post 1700) +

  • John Michael Crichton (1942-2008), American best-selling author, physician, producer, director and screenwriter
  • Judy Crichton (1929-2007), born Judith Feiner, an American Primetime Emmy Award winning television news and executive producer of the PBS series "American Experience" from 1988 to 1996
  • John Alston "Jack" Crichton (1916-2007), American oil and natural gas industrialist
  • John Michael Crichton (1942-2008), American author, film producer, film director, and television producer
  • Andrew Crichton (1790-1855), Scottish biographer and historian, youngest son of a small landed proprietor, born in the parish of Kirkmahoe, Dumfriesshire, December 1790 [8]
  • Sir Alexander Crichton (1763-1856), Scottish physician, second son of Alexander Crichton of Woodhouselee and Newington in Midlothian [8]
  • Jesse Crichton (b. 1991), Australian rules footballer who played for the Fremantle Football Club (2010-2013)
  • Charles William Harry Crichton (1872-1958), British gold medalist sailor at the 1908 Summer Olympics
  • John Henry George Crichton (1907-1940), 5th Earl Erne, Irish peer, soldier and politician
  • John Henry Crichton KP, PC (1839-1914), 4th Earl Erne, Irish peer and Conservative politician, High Sheriff of Donegal for 1867
  • ... (Another 6 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

HMS Royal Oak
  • Crichton, British Seaman with the Royal Navy aboard the HMS Royal Oak (1939) when she was torpedoed by U-47 and sunk; he survived the sinking [9]
RMS Lusitania
  • Mrs. Mabel Crichton, American 1st Class Passenger residing in London, England, who sailed aboard the RMS Lusitania (1915) and died in the sinking and was recovered [10]

  1. Black, George F., The Surnames of Scotland Their Origin, Meaning and History. New York: New York Public Library, 1946. Print. (ISBN 0-87104-172-3)
  2. "What are the 5,000 Most Common Last Names in the U.S.?".,
  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. Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 11th October 2022).
  5. Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 17th November 2020). Retrieved from
  6. New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 5th November 2010). Retrieved from
  7. New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 17th October 2018). Retrieved from
  8. Wikisource contributors. "Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900." Wikisource . Wikisource , 4 Jun. 2018. Web. 30 June 2020
  9. Ships hit by U-boats crew list HMS Royal Oak (08) - (Retrieved 2018 February, 9th) - retrieved from
  10. Lusitania Passenger List - The Lusitania Resource. (Retrieved 2014, March 6) . Retrieved from on Facebook