Grimstone History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The name Grimstone was brought to England in the great wave of migration following the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Grimstone family lived in Grymstone, Yorkshire. Grimston, however, is a fairly common place-name in England, so a given individual case may come from any of several places so named. The distinguished name Grimstone is derived from the general case of the Old Norman personal name Grimr, and the Old English tun, which means settlement or town. [1]

Early Origins of the Grimstone family

The surname Grimstone was first found in the East Riding of Yorkshire where "Sylvester de Grimston, 'Standard-bearer and Chamberlain to William I.,' of Grimston, in the parish of Garton, is claimed as the ancestor of this venerable Norman family, who have ever since the period of the Conquest resided at the place from whence the name is derived." [2]

"The family of Grimston have been seated [at Garton] since the time of William I., when their ancestor Sylvester de Grimston had a grant of land from the king to be held of the honour of Roos. The church is a good structure, with a low tower; adjoining it on the north, is a mausoleum belonging to the Grimston family." [3]

"Several places bear this designation [Grimston], four of them in Yorkshire, the ancient and present abode of the family." [4]

Early History of the Grimstone family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Grimstone research. Another 128 words (9 lines of text) covering the years 1611, 1952, 1508, 1600, 1569, 1648, 1626, 1629, 1603, 1685, 1640, 1648, 1660, 1685, 1656, 1643, 1700, 1603, 1683 and 1756 are included under the topic Early Grimstone History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Grimstone Spelling Variations

Norman surnames are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations. The frequent changes in surnames are largely due to the fact that the Old and Middle English languages lacked definite spelling rules. The introduction of Norman French to England, as well as the official court languages of Latin and French, also had pronounced influences on the spelling of surnames. Since medieval scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded, rather than adhering to any specific spelling rules, it was common to find the same individual referred to with different spellings. The name has been spelled Grimston, Grimstone and others.

Early Notables of the Grimstone family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Edward Grimston (ca. 1508-1600), of Rishangles, Suffolk, an English politician and Comptroller of Calais; Sir Harbottle Grimston, 1st Baronet (c. 1569-1648) an English politician, Member of Parliament for Essex (1626-1629); and his son, Sir Harbottle Grimston, 2nd Baronet (1603-1685), an English lawyer and politician, Member of Parliament for Colchester (1640-1648) and (1660-1685) and Essex (1656); and his son, Sir Samuel Grimston, 3rd Baronet (1643-1700), an English politician, the second and only...
Another 78 words (6 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Grimstone Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Grimstone migration to the United States +

Many English families emigrated to North American colonies in order to escape the political chaos in Britain at this time. Unfortunately, many English families made the trip to the New World under extremely harsh conditions. Overcrowding on the ships caused the majority of the immigrants to arrive diseased, famished, and destitute from the long journey across the stormy Atlantic. Despite these hardships, many of the families prospered and went on to make invaluable contributions to the development of the cultures of the United States and Canada. Early North American immigration records have revealed a number of people bearing the name Grimstone or a variant listed above:

Grimstone Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Thomas Grimstone, who settled in Virginia in 1654
  • Tho Grimstone, who arrived in Virginia in 1654 [5]
Grimstone Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Samuel Grimstone, who settled in Maryland in 1737
Grimstone Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • John Grimstone, who arrived in Philadelphia in 1853

New Zealand Grimstone 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:

Grimstone Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • S E Grimstone, who landed in Auckland, New Zealand in 1840 aboard the ship Westminster
  • W Grimstone, who landed in Auckland, New Zealand in 1840


The Grimstone 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: Faitz proverount
Motto Translation: Deeds will prove.


  1. ^ Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
  2. ^ Shirley, Evelyn Philip, The Noble and Gentle Men of England; The Arms and Descents. Westminster: John Bower Nichols and Sons, 1866, Print.
  3. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  4. ^ Lowe, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  5. ^ 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)


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