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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright 2000 - 2016

The ancestors of the name Featherstone date back to the days of the Anglo-Saxon tribes of Britain. The name is derived from their residence in the area that was named Featherstone which was in the counties of Staffordshire, the West Riding of Yorkshire and Northumberland. The surname Featherstone is a habitation name, which is a type of local name that was originally derived from pre-existing names for towns, villages, parishes, or farmsteads. In this case, the surname was originally derived from an ancient structure made of three light-weight stones that were found near the dwelling place of the original bearers.


The surname Featherstone was first found in Northumberland at Featherstone Castle, a large Gothic style country mansion on the bank of the River South Tyne, near the town of Haltwhistle. The 11th century manor house belonged to the Featherstonehaugh family and dates back to the 13th-century. A square three-storey pele tower was added in 1330 by Thomas de Featherstonehaugh. The castle was held in good repair through the centuries as a survey from the year 1541 reported the property to be a tower in good repair and occupied by Thomas Featherstonehaugh. For a brief time, the castle was sold to Sir William Howard in the 17th century, but was repurchased from the Earl of Carlisle in 1711 by Matthew Featherstonehaugh (1662-1762).

Featherstone has been spelled many different ways, including Before English spelling became standardized over the last few hundred years, spelling variations in names were a common occurrence. As the English language changed in the Middle Ages, absorbing pieces of Latin and French, as well as other languages, the spelling of people's names also changed considerably, even over a single lifetime. Featherston, Featherstone, Fetherstone, Featherstonhaugh, Featherstun, Fetherston, Featherstonaugh, Featherstonhoe, Fetherstonhoe, Fetherstunhaugh, Fetherstonaugh and many more.


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Featherstone research. Another 265 words (19 lines of text) covering the years 1379, 1540, 1886, 1621, 1638, 1628, 1711, 1654, 1746, 1776, 1830 and 1923 are included under the topic Early Featherstone History in all our PDF Extended History products.


Another 149 words (11 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Featherstone Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.


Some of the Featherstone family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 113 words (8 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.


In an attempt to escape the chaos experienced in England, many English families boarded overcrowded and diseased ships sailing for the shores of North America and other British colonies. Those families hardy enough, and lucky enough, to make the passage intact were rewarded with land and a social environment less prone to religious and political persecution. Many of these families became important contributors to the young colonies in which they settled. Early immigration and passenger lists have documented some of the first Featherstones to arrive on North American shores:

Featherstone Settlers in United States in the 17th Century

  • Richard Featherstone, who arrived in Jamestown, Va in 1607
  • John Featherstone, who arrived in Maryland in 1679

Featherstone Settlers in United States in the 18th Century

  • Mary Featherstone, who arrived in Barbados in 1730
  • George Featherstone, who landed in New England in 1742

Featherstone Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • William Featherstone, who landed in New York in 1831
  • Thomas Featherstone settled in Pennsylvania in 1848

Featherstone Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century

  • Eleonr Featherstone, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1750
  • Phoebe Featherstone, who landed in Nova Scotia in 1750

Featherstone Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century

  • Jonothan Featherstone, English convict from York, who was transported aboard the "Almorah" on April 1817, settling in New South Wales, Australia
  • Michael Featherstone arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Hooghly" in 1839
  • Charlotte Featherstone arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Hooghly" in 1839
  • martha Featherstone arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Hooghly" in 1839

Featherstone Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century

  • William Featherstone arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Armstrong" in 1865


  • Angela Featherstone (b. 1965), Canadian Gemini Award nominated actress from Hamilton, Ontario, best known for playing Chloe in Friends
  • Donald "Don" Featherstone (1935-2015), American artist, best known for his 1957 creation of the Plastic Pink Flamingo
  • Liza Featherstone (b. 1969), American journalist and journalism professor
  • Michelle Featherstone, English-born, American singer-songwriter, recipient of mulitple awards from the Royal Academy of Music
  • Lewis Porter Featherstone (1851-1922), American politician, Member of Arkansas State House of Representatives, 1887-88; U.S. Representative from Arkansas 1st District, 1890-91; Defeated (Union Labor), 1888, 1890
  • Mrs. J. A. Featherstone, American Democrat politician, Alternate Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Oklahoma, 1928
  • Robert Featherstone, American scientist and educator
  • James Featherstone (b. 1979), English footballer
  • Nicky Lee Featherstone (b. 1988), English professional footballer from Goole, England
  • Anthony James "Tony" Featherstone (b. 1949), retired Canadian professional ice hockey forward



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: Valens et volens
Motto Translation: Able and willing.


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  1. Holt, J.C. Ed. Domesday Studies. Woodbridge: Boydell, 1987. Print. (ISBN 0-85115-477-8).
  2. Matthews, John. Matthews' American Armoury and Blue Book. London: John Matthews, 1911. Print.
  3. Magnusson, Magnus. Chambers Biographical Dictionary 5th edition. Edinburgh: W & R Chambers, 1990. Print.
  4. Shaw, William A. Knights of England A Complete Record from the Earliest Time to the Present Day of the Knights of all the Orders of Chivalry in England, Scotland, Ireland and Knights Bachelors 2 Volumes. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print. (ISBN 080630443X).
  5. Bardsley, C.W. A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6).
  6. Burke, Sir Bernard. Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Peerage and Baronetage, The Privy Council, Knightage and Compainonage. London: Burke Publishing, 1921. Print.
  7. MacAulay, Thomas Babington. History of England from the Accession of James the Second 4 volumes. New York: Harper and Brothers, 1879. Print.
  8. Chadwick, Nora Kershaw and J.X.W.P Corcoran. The Celts. London: Penguin, 1790. Print. (ISBN 0140212116).
  9. Burke, John Bernard Ed. The Roll of Battle Abbey. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  10. Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin . Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8).
  11. ...

The Featherstone Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Featherstone Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

This page was last modified on 20 January 2016 at 10:51.

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