Denholm History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Though hidden in the annals of history, the chronicles of Scotland reveal the early records of the Norman surname Denholm which ranks as one of the oldest. The history of the name is interwoven within the colorful plaid of Scottish history and is an intrinsic part of the heritage of Scotland.

Early Origins of the Denholm family

The surname Denholm was first found in Denholm, a small village located between Jedburgh and Hawick in the Scottish Borders. [1]

As early as the 16th century, the hamlet was named Denum and was frequently plundered and burnt during English raids of that time. There are three parishes named Denham in England where the local is derived from the Old English word "denu" + "ham" meaning "homestead or village in a valley." [2]

In Buckinghamshire, Denham is today a village and civil parish in the union of Eton and comprises 3780 acres. It was listed as Deneham in 1066 and later as Daneham in the Domesday Book [3].

Denham, Suffolk is near Bury St Edmunds and was listed as Denham in 1086. There is another Denham in Suffolk which lies near Eye and in this latter case, it was spelt Denham in 1086. Conjecturally, the family was descended from W. Hurrant, a Norman noble, who was granted the lands of Denham by William the Conqueror, and erected Denham Castle, and today the earthworks of the moat and bailey still remain.

Early History of the Denholm family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Denholm research. Another 120 words (9 lines of text) covering the years 1150, 1296, 1299, 1506, 1600, 1800, 1591, 1556, 1564, 1565, 1584, 1572, 1580, 1581, 1586, 1588, 1559, 1639, 1577, 1587, 1607, 1614, 1669 and 1815 are included under the topic Early Denholm History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Denholm Spelling Variations

Spelling variations of this family name include: Denham, Denholm, Denholme, Dennam and others.

Early Notables of the Denholm family (pre 1700)

Notable among the family at this time was Henry Denham ( fl. 1591), English printer who was presented as an apprentice with Richard Tottel, 14 Oct. 1556. "He was fined in 1564 for printing unlicensed primers, in 1565 and 1584 for using indecorous language, and for improper behaviour on other occasions, which conduct did not prevent him from being called to the livery of the Stationers' Company in 1572, in serving as renter in 1580 and 1581, and being appointed under-warden in 1586 and 1588. He lived in Paternoster Row, at the sign of the Star, which, with the motto 'Os homini...
Another 111 words (8 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Denholm Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Denholm family to Ireland

Some of the Denholm family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 33 words (2 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Denholm migration to the United States +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Denholm Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Alexander Denholm, who landed in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1842 [4]
Denholm Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • David Denholm, aged 28, who settled in America from Glasgow, in 1905
  • Gavin Denholm, aged 11, who settled in America from Airdrie, Scotland, in 1907
  • Christine Denholm, aged 14, who immigrated to the United States from Airdrie, Scotland, in 1907
  • Isaac Denholm, aged 49, who immigrated to America from Airdrie, Scotland, in 1907
  • Elizabeth Denholm, aged 35, who landed in America from Edinburgh, Scotland, in 1911
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Australia Denholm migration to Australia +

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

Denholm Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Francis Denholm, aged 36, a labourer, who arrived in South Australia in 1854 aboard the ship "Marion" [5]

Contemporary Notables of the name Denholm (post 1700) +

  • Frank Edward Denholm (1923-2016), American politician, Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from South Dakota (1971-1975)
  • John Ferguson Ian Denholm, Chairman, Denholm Ship Management Ltd
  • James Denholm (1772-1818), Scottish teacher of drawing in Glasgow, rightly described as one of the ablest of the local chroniclers [6]
  • J. Denholm, Australian physicist at Wilkes Station in 1959, eponym of Mount Denholm, Antarctica
  • Robyn Denholm, Australian Chief financial officer and Executive Vice President of Juniper Networks
  • Noël Denholm, English historian
  • David Denholm (1924-1997), Australian author and teacher
  • F Denholm, Australian rugby league player in the 1909 competition
  • Mitchell Elliott Denholm (1922-1992), English film, television and theatre actor
  • Denholm Elliott CBE (1922-1992), English actor of stage and screen, probably most known for his roles in the Indiana Jones movies as Dr. Marcus Brody


The Denholm 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: Cura dat victoriam
Motto Translation: Caution gives victory.


  1. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of Scotland. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  2. ^ Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
  3. ^ Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
  4. ^ 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)
  5. ^ South Australian Register Tuesday 12th December 1854. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) Marion 1854. Retrieved http://www.theshipslist.com/ships/australia/marion1854.shtml
  6. ^ Wikisource contributors. "Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900." Wikisource . Wikisource , 4 Jun. 2018. Web. 30 June 2020


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