Dunston History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms 

In ancient Anglo-Saxon England, the ancestors of the Dunston surname lived near a stony hill. Dunston is derived from two Old English elements: dun and stan. Dun was a word for hill, and stan meant "stony." The translation of the name is therefore "stony hill." It is also possible that the name is patronymic; that is, derived from the name of a parent. Dunstan was a popular given name in England in the Middle Ages.

Early Origins of the Dunston family

The surname Dunston was first found in Cornwall where they held a family seat from very ancient times. The earliest reference of the name was of Dunstan (c.909 - 988,) who was an Abbot of Glastonbury, a Bishop of Worcester, a Bishop of London, and an Archbishop of Canterbury. He was later canonized as a saint. Durston is a village and civil parish in Somerset that dates back to the Domesday Books where it lists Roger Arundel as originally holding the land but later passed to William de Arlegh who founded the priory of Buckland Sororum (also known as Buckland Priory) in about 1167. The market-town and parish of Shiffnall in Shropshire was home to another branch of the family. "This place, formerly called Idsall, appears to have been of greater note than it is at present. It belonged to Earl Morcar prior to the Conquest, and at a period considerably later was the property of the family of Dunstanville, one of whom, Walter de Dunstanville, by the special command of Henry III., resided in the Marches, to protect them against the ravaging incursions of the Welsh. The estate afterwards came into the possession of the Badlesmeres, who obtained from Edward I. a market for two days in the week, and two yearly fairs." [1]

Important Dates for the Dunston family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Dunston research. Another 142 words (10 lines of text) covering the years 1202 and 1291 are included under the topic Early Dunston History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Dunston Spelling Variations

It is only in the last few hundred years that the English language has been standardized. For that reason, early Anglo-Saxon surnames like Dunston are characterized by many spelling variations. As the English language changed and incorporated elements of other European languages, even literate people changed the spelling of their names. The variations of the name Dunston include: Dunstan, Dunston, Dunstone, Dunstane, Donston, Dunstavill and many more.

Early Notables of the Dunston family (pre 1700)

More information is included under the topic Early Dunston Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Dunston migration to the United States

Many English families tired of political and religious strife left Britain for the new colonies in North America. Although the trip itself offered no relief - conditions on the ships were extremely cramped, and many travelers arrived diseased, starving, and destitute - these immigrants believed the opportunities that awaited them were worth the risks. Once in the colonies, many of the families did indeed prosper and, in turn, made significant contributions to the culture and economies of the growing colonies. An inquiry into the early roots of North American families has revealed a number of immigrants bearing the name Dunston or a variant listed above:

Dunston Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Cicely Dunston, who arrived in Virginia in 1636 [2]
  • Andrew Dunston who settled in Virginia with his wife Cicely in 1653
  • Andrew Dunston, who arrived in Virginia in 1653 [2]
  • William Dunston, who settled in Virginia in 1654
  • William Dunston, who landed in Virginia in 1654 [2]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Dunston Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Peter Dunston, who landed in Virginia in 1705 [2]
Dunston Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Charles Dunston, aged 34, who landed in New York in 1812 [2]
  • H Dunston, who landed in San Francisco, California in 1851 [2]

Dunston migration to Canada

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Dunston Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century
  • Thomas Dunston, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1749
Dunston Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • Alfred Dunston, aged 23, who arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick aboard the ship "Prudence" in 1838

Dunston migration to Australia

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

Dunston Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Francis Dunston, aged 33, who arrived in South Australia in 1854 aboard the ship "Thetis" [3]
  • Ambrose Dunston, aged 26, who arrived in South Australia in 1854 aboard the ship "Thetis" [3]
  • Harriet Dunston, aged 23, a servant, who arrived in South Australia in 1855 aboard the ship "Lady Macdonald" [4]
  • Mrs. Jane Dunston, (b. 1833), aged 29, Cornish housekeeper departing from Soton on 17th March 1862 aboard the ship "Boanerges" arriving in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia on 9th July 1862 [5]
  • Mr. Henry Dunston, (b. 1856), aged 6, Cornish settler departing from Soton on 17th March 1862 aboard the ship "Boanerges" arriving in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia on 9th July 1862 [5]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Dunston 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:

Dunston Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Samuel Dunston, aged 23, a farm labourer, who arrived in Port Nicholson aboard the ship "Gertrude" in 1841
  • Jane F. Dunston, aged 22, who arrived in Port Nicholson aboard the ship "Gertrude" in 1841
  • Mrs. Julia A. Dunston, (b. 1846), aged 30, Cornish settler departing on 24th June 1876 aboard the ship "Waitangi" arriving in Lyttelton, Canterbury, New Zealand on 16th September 1876 [6]
  • Mr. Loreza Dunston, (b. 1875), aged 9 months, Cornish settler departing on 24th June 1876 aboard the ship "Waitangi" arriving in Lyttelton, Canterbury, New Zealand on 16th September 1876 [6]
  • Miss Mary Dunston, (b. 1871), aged 5, Cornish settler departing on 24th June 1876 aboard the ship "Waitangi " arriving in Lyttelton, Canterbury, New Zealand on 16th September 1876 [6]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Contemporary Notables of the name Dunston (post 1700)

  • Shawon Donnell Dunston (b. 1963), American former Major League Baseball shortstop
  • John Herbert Dunston FRSA (b. 1952), English headmaster of Leighton Park School and Sibford School
  • Richard Dunston, English shipbuilder in Yorkshire in the 1800s

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Citations

  1. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  2. ^ 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)
  3. ^ South Australian Register Friday 1st September 1854. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) Emigrant 1854. Retrieved http://www.theshipslist.com/ships/australia/thetis1854.shtml
  4. ^ South Australian Register Monday 9th April 1855. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) Lady Macdonald 1855. Retrieved http://www.theshipslist.com/ships/australia/ladymacdonald1855.shtml
  5. ^ Cornwall Online Parish Clerks. (Retrieved 3rd May 2018). Retrieved from http://www.opc-cornwall.org/Resc/pdfs/emigration_australia_victoria.pdf
  6. ^ Cornwall Online Parish Clerks. (Retrieved 2018, April 30). Emigrants to Lyttelton 1858-84 [PDF]. Retrieved from http://www.opc-cornwall.org/Resc/pdfs/new_zealand_assisted.pdf
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