Dowtfire History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
- Origins Available:
Dowtfire is a name whose history is entwined with the ancient Anglo-Saxon tribes of Britain. It was a name for a person who was considered brave and strong. The surname Dowtfire originally derived from the Old English word doughty or dohti which meant valiant, hardy, manly. 
Most sources agree that this is the generally accepted origin of the name. However, one source claims the name to be Norman in origin as the Magni Rotuli Scaccarii Normanniae notes William de Oughtia, Normandy 1180, 1198. 
Early Origins of the Dowtfire family
The surname Dowtfire was first found in Yorkshire where early spellings of the name varied greatly.
By example, the Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls of 1379 included: Johanna Doughti; Johannes Doughty, taylour; and Adam Doughty. In the East Riding of Yorkshire, the Poll Tax Rolls for Howdenshire included Robertus Dughty and Johannes Dughti. 
While most of the records of the name come from Yorkshire, we must look to Bedfordshire for the first record. For it is here that William Douti held lands as listed in the Assize Rolls in 1247. Later, William Doughty was listed in Leicestershire in 1300 and John Dughti was listed as a Freeman of York in 1314. 
Early History of the Dowtfire family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Dowtfire research. Another 116 words (8 lines of text) covering the years 1792, 1365, 1533, 1545, 1578, 1577, 1598, 1672, 1598, 1613, 1599, 1655 and 1620 are included under the topic Early Dowtfire History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Dowtfire Spelling Variations
Before the last few hundred years, the English language had no fast system of spelling rules. For that reason, spelling variations are commonly found in early Anglo-Saxon surnames. Over the years, many variations of the name Dowtfire were recorded, including Doughty, Doughtie, Dowtie, Dowty and others.
Early Notables of the Dowtfire family (pre 1700)
Notables of the family at this time include Thomas Doughty (1545-1578), an English nobleman, soldier, scholar and personal secretary of Christopher Hatton. His association with Francis Drake, on a 1577 voyage to interfere with Spanish treasure fleets, ended in a shipboard trial for treason and witchcraft and Doughty's execution.
Another 50 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Dowtfire Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Dowtfire family
To escape oppression and starvation at that time, many English families left for the "open frontiers" of the New World with all its perceived opportunities. In droves people migrated to the many British colonies, those in North America in particular, paying high rates for passages in cramped, unsafe ships. Although many of the settlers did not make the long passage alive, those who did see the shores of North America perceived great opportunities before them. Many of the families that came from England went on to make essential contributions to the emerging nations of Canada and the United States. Research into various historical records revealed some of first members of the Dowtfire family emigrate to North America: Anne and Thomas Doughty who settled in Virginia in 1623; Francis Doughty settled in New England in 1630; Phillip Doughty arrived in Boston in 1774; another Anne Doughty settled in Virginia in 1736. Doughty's Falls were probably named after Thomas Doughty a settler from Berwick in 1657..
- Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
- The Norman People and Their Existing Descendants in the British Dominions and the United States Of America. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0636-X)
- Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
- Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)