Dawtre History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Dawtre is one of the names that was brought to England in the wave of migration following the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Dawtre family lived in Sussex at Moor House, Petworth, not far from Battle Abbey. [1] Hawtrie is an adaptation of Hauterive, Normandy, the name of which literally means high river.

"In recording the foundation of Heryngham Priory by William Dawtree, the Monasticon thus speaks: 'The latin word 'Ripa,' was in Norman writings generally meant for a river, without relation to 'Ripa' a bank. The Romans called it 'Haultrey.' There was an ancient family of knights, owners of much lands in these parts, and of fair possessions, even in the very bosom of the 'high stream' from which they took their name, and were called 'De Haul-trey.' "The ancient house" here alluded to was the stem of many important branches, the most flourishing of which was that planted in the county of Sussex, at Moor House in Petworth, not very far from Battle Abbey itself. It produced a series of knightly generations, which held the highest rank in their country, and intermarried with its noblest families. " [1]

Early Origins of the Dawtre family

The surname Dawtre was first found in Sussex where they held a family seat as Lords of the Manor of Heringham. Soon after the Domesday Book survey, a census initiated by Duke William of Normandy after his conquest of England in 1066 A.D., the family built Heringham Priory. [2] The first Norman noble to settle was from Hauterive, probably assuming the cognate 'de Hauterive'. He came from the arrondisement of Alencon in Normandy. It is most likely a corruption of the Norman Hauterive which produced the family name but, strangely, Dawtry and Dealtry have also been attributed to the same source, this from a Latinization of the location of their estates in Sussex, i.e., De Alta Ripa, a high bank or cliff. The Dawtries, the main house of which is in Petworth parish, are one and the same as the Hawtries.

Early History of the Dawtre family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Dawtre research. Another 100 words (7 lines of text) covering the years 1659, 1758 and 1767 are included under the topic Early Dawtre History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Dawtre Spelling Variations

Before English spelling was standardized a few hundred years ago, spelling variations of names were a common occurrence. Elements of Latin, Norman French and other languages became incorporated into English throughout the Middle Ages, and name spellings changed even among the literate. The variations of the surname Dawtre include Hawtre, Hawtree, Hawtrie, Dawtre, Dawtree, Dawtrie, Hawtrey, Haultrey, Dealtre, Dealtrie, Dawtrey, Dawtry, Daltry, Haltry, Haltrie and many more.

Early Notables of the Dawtre family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was William Dawtrey, Esq. of Moor House, Doddinghurst, died s. p. in 1758, having bequeated his estates to (the son of his sister Sarah) his nephew, and heir, Richard Luther,, Esq. of Myles's, in Essex, who m. Charlotte, daughter of Dr. Hugh Chamberlen, the famous Court Physician, temp. Queen Anne, and-died at Vicars Hill, Hants, in 1767...
Another 63 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Dawtre Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the Dawtre family

In England at this time, the uncertainty of the political and religious environment of the time caused many families to board ships for distant British colonies in the hopes of finding land and opportunity, and escaping persecution. The voyages were expensive, crowded, and difficult, though, and many arrived in North America sick, starved, and destitute. Those who did make it, however, were greeted with greater opportunities and freedoms that they could have experienced at home. Many of those families went on to make important contributions to the young nations in which they settled. Early immigration records have shown some of the first Dawtres to arrive on North American shores: John Dawtres who settled in Virginia in 1636; William Dawtrey settled in Barbados in 1683.



  1. ^ Burke, John Bernard, The Roll of Battle Abbey. London: Edward Churton, 26, Holles Street, 1848, Print.
  2. ^ Lowe, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.


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