Gayte History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
- Origins Available:
The ancestors of the Gayte family brought their name to England in the wave of migration after the Norman Conquest of 1066. They lived in various counties of England and later in Scotland. The name, however, refers to the family's residence near an important thoroughfare or main road. It derives from the Old English root gate, which means road or thoroughfare.
Early Origins of the Gayte family
The surname Gayte was first found in various counties of England and Scotland. The earliest record of the family was Ailricius de la Gata who was listed in the Pipe Rolls of Devon in 1169. A few years later, Ralph de Gates was listed in the Curia Regis Rolls of Oxfordshire in 1206 and later, Gilbert atte Gate was listed in the Assize Rolls of Cheshire in 1275. The Subsidy Rolls of Worcestershire in 1275 list Cristina Gate.
The Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 list Hugh le Geyt in Oxfordshire and the Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls of 1379 has numerous entries for the family: Johannes Gayte; Thomas de Gayte; Jonannes atte Gate; Robertus de Gate; and Custancia del Gates. Silvester atte Gates was rector of Brinton, Norfolk in 1354.  "Its medieval forms are Ate Gate and atte Gate, which have since the XV. cent. modified to Agate, Gater, and especially to Gates." 
Later a branch of the family was found in the parish of Knedlington in the East Riding of Yorkshire. "The old Hall [of Knedlington], a fine specimen of the Elizabethan style, was possessed by Sir John Gate, a distinguished knight in the reign of Henry VIII." 
And further to the north in Scotland, all of the entries and later typically showing a migration from England to Scotland. Patrick Gaittis was minister of Polwarth from 1593 to 1604. A seal dated 1605 reads "Master Patrik Gaittie, minister, vndoutit persone of the perochin and paroche kirk of dunce." In modern English, it translates as " S' Patricii Gait. Patrick Gaittis and James Gaittis were ministers of Duns from 1582 to 1611 and John Gaittis was minister of Bunkle from 1614 to 1640."  Black continues "Gate is common element in place names on both sides of the Border."
Important Dates for the Gayte family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Gayte research. Another 102 words (7 lines of text) covering the years 1164, 1206, 1260 and 1379 are included under the topic Early Gayte History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Gayte Spelling Variations
Before the last few hundred years the English language had no fixed system of spelling rules. For that reason, spelling variations occurred commonly in Anglo Norman surnames. Over the years, many variations of the name Gayte were recorded, including Gate, Gates and others.
Early Notables of the Gayte family (pre 1700)
More information is included under the topic Early Gayte Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Gayte family
The unstable environment in England at this time caused numerous families to board ships and leave in search of opportunity and freedom from persecution abroad in places like Ireland, Australia, and particularly the New World. The voyage was extremely difficult, however, and only taken at great expense. The cramped conditions and unsanitary nature of the vessels caused many to arrive diseased and starving, not to mention destitute from the enormous cost. Still opportunity in the emerging nations of Canada and the United States was far greater than at home and many went on to make important contributions to the cultures of their adopted countries. An examination of many early immigration records reveals that people bearing the name Gayte arrived in North America very early: Sir Thomas Gates who served as Governor of Virginia from 1611-1614; nine years before the "Mayflower"; Stephen Gates sailed in the "Diligent".
- ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-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)
- ^ Lowe, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
- ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
- ^ Black, George F., The Surnames of Scotland Their Origin, Meaning and History. New York: New York Public Library, 1946. Print. (ISBN 0-87104-172-3)