Show ContentsDanby History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The name Danby first arose amongst the Anglo-Saxon tribes of Britain. It is derived from their having lived in Danby, the name of two parishes in Yorkshire and Derbyshire. The place-name Danby is derived from the Old English word dan.

Early Origins of the Danby family

The surname Danby was first found in West Yorkshire at Denby Dale where the first record of the place name was in the Domesday Book where it was listed as Denebi. [1] Today Denby Dale is a village and civil parish in the metropolitan borough of Kirklees and is known for baking giant pies, a tradition first started in 1788 to celebrate the recovery of King George III from his mental illness.

Alternatively the name could have been derived from Danby, a parish, in the union of Guisborough, E. division of the liberty of Langbaurgh, in the North Riding of Yorkshire. "This place, which was formerly of considerable importance, was granted by the Conqueror to Robert de Brus, who held of the king in capite, and who built a castle here; which, with the estate, remained with the family till the time of Henry III. " [2]

Another branch of the family was found in the parish of Shilton in Warwickshire. "It was formerly the residence of a branch of the Denbigh family, whose ancient mansion is still remaining." [2]

The variant Tenby, Thinbegh and Tynbegh originated in Tenby, Pembrokeshire, Wales. Some of this family emigrated to Ireland. William Tynbegh, or de Thinbegh (c.1370-1424) was an Irish lawyer who held the office of Chief Justice and Lord High Treasurer of Ireland.

Early History of the Danby family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Danby research. Another 72 words (5 lines of text) covering the years 1189, 1212, 1300, 1474, 1419, 1426, 1421, 1423, 1503, 1571, 1554, 1530, 1590, 1575, 1576, 1610, 1660, 1631, 1667, 1655 and 1727 are included under the topic Early Danby History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Danby Spelling Variations

One relatively recent invention that did much to standardize English spelling was the printing press. However, before its invention even the most literate people recorded their names according to sound rather than spelling. The spelling variations under which the name Danby has appeared include Danby, Danbie, Danbey and others.

Early Notables of the Danby family (pre 1700)

Notables of the family at this time include His Worship Sir Robert Danby KS JP (died 1474), a British justice, Chief Justice of the Common Pleas, Chief Justice of England; John Denby, British politician, Member of Parliament for Wallingford (1419 and 1426); John Denby, British politician, Member of Parliament for Ludgershall (1421 and 1423); Sir Christopher Danby...
Another 57 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Danby Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

United States Danby migration to the United States +

At this time, the shores of the New World beckoned many English families that felt that the social climate in England was oppressive and lacked opportunity for change. Thousands left England at great expense in ships that were overcrowded and full of disease. A great portion of these settlers never survived the journey and even a greater number arrived sick, starving, and without a penny. The survivors, however, were often greeted with greater opportunity than they could have experienced back home. These English settlers made significant contributions to those colonies that would eventually become the United States and Canada. An examination of early immigration records and passenger ship lists revealed that people bearing the name Danby arrived in North America very early:

Danby Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Hector and Hestor Danby who landed in North Carolina in 1674
Danby Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Catherine Danby, who landed in America in 1743
Danby Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Mary Danby with four children settled in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1820
  • Joseph Danby, who settled in New York State in 1823
  • John Danby, who settled in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1854

Australia Danby migration to Australia +

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

Danby Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century

New Zealand Danby 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:

Danby Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Mr. Francis Danby, (b. 1834), aged 22, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "Sir Edward Paget" arriving in Lyttelton, Christchurch, South Island, New Zealand on 2nd July 1856 [4]
  • Mr. John Danby, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "Kenilworth" arriving in Auckland, New Zealand on 2nd May 1857 [5]
  • Mrs. Danby, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "Kenilworth" arriving in Auckland, New Zealand on 2nd May 1857 [5]
  • Child Danby, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "Kenilworth" arriving in Auckland, New Zealand on 2nd May 1857 [5]

West Indies Danby migration to West Indies +

The British first settled the British West Indies around 1604. They made many attempts but failed in some to establish settlements on the Islands including Saint Lucia and Grenada. By 1627 they had managed to establish settlements on St. Kitts (St. Christopher) and Barbados, but by 1641 the Spanish had moved in and destroyed some of these including those at Providence Island. The British continued to expand the settlements including setting the First Federation in the British West Indies by 1674; some of the islands include Barbados, Bermuda, Cayman Island, Turks and Caicos, Jamaica and Belize then known as British Honduras. By the 1960's many of the islands became independent after the West Indies Federation which existed from 1958 to 1962 failed due to internal political conflicts. After this a number of Eastern Caribbean islands formed a free association. [6]
Danby Settlers in West Indies in the 17th Century
  • John Danby, who settled in Barbados in 1680

Contemporary Notables of the name Danby (post 1700) +

  • Gordon T. Danby (d. 2016), American physicist, best known for his work on superconducting Maglev, co-recipient of the Franklin Institute Medal 2000 for Engineering
  • Thomas Danby (1817-1886), English painter, the younger son of Francis Danby [7]
  • James Francis Danby (1816-1875), English painter, eldest son of Francis Danby, born at Bristol in 1816 [7]
  • John Danby (b. 1983), English footballer from Stoke
  • John Danby (1757-1798), English composer of over 92 glees
  • Graeme Danby (b. 1962), English operatic bass singer
  • Francis Danby (1793-1861), Irish painter of dramatic landscapes and seascapes, third son of James Danby, a farmer and small landed proprietor at Common, near Wexford [7]
  • Ken Danby CM, O.Ont (1940-2007), Canadian realist painter from Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario
  • Mr. Michael David Danby M.B.E., British Chief Executive for Advanced Supply Chain Ltd, was appointed Member of the Order of the British Empire on 8th June 2018, for services to Business and to the community in West Yorkshire [8]
  • Michael David Danby (b. 1955), Australian politician, Member of the Australian Parliament for Melbourne Ports (1998-), Parliamentary Secretary for the Arts (2013)
  • ... (Another 2 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

HMS Dorsetshire
  • Henry Arthur Danby (d. 1945), British Marine aboard the HMS Dorsetshire when she was struck by air bombers and sunk; he died in the sinking [9]

  1. Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
  2. Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  3. Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 25th May 2022).
  4. New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 26th March 2019). Retrieved from
  5. New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 17th October 2018). Retrieved from
  7. Wikisource contributors. "Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900." Wikisource . Wikisource , 4 Jun. 2018. Web. 30 June 2020
  8. "Birthday and New Year Honours Lists (1940 to 2019)." Issue 62507, 28 December 2018 | London Gazette, The Gazette, Dec. 2018,
  9. Force Z Survivors HMS Dorsetshire Crew List, (Retrieved 2018, February 13th), on Facebook