Hornby History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The roots of the Anglo-Saxon name Hornby come from when the family resided in one of the places called Hornby in Lancashire, Westmorland (now part of Cumbria), or the North Riding of Yorkshire. "This place is distinguished for its castle, which stands on the site of a Roman villa, on the summit of a bold rock of conical form, in many parts shrouded by trees, and washed by the Wenning at its base. The castle was originally founded soon after the Norman Conquest." [1]

Early Origins of the Hornby family

The surname Hornby was first found in Lancashire at Hornby, a township and chapelry, and formerly a market-town, in the parish of Melling, hundred of Lonsdale. There are two Hornby Castles of note: the first in Lancashire which was originally built for the Neville family in the 13th century, and the second in Yorkshire, home to the St. Quintin family.

However, we must look to the latter shire to find the first record of the surname, namely William de Horneby, who was listed in the Pipe Rolls of Yorkshire in 1205. John Hornby was listed in Gloucestershire in 1376. [2] The Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls of 1379 list the following: Johannes de Horneby and Agnes de Horneby. [3]

Early History of the Hornby family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Hornby research. Another 87 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1638, 1662, 1668, 1518, 1618, 1618 and 1619 are included under the topic Early Hornby History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Hornby Spelling Variations

The English language only became standardized in the last few centuries; therefore,spelling variations are common among early Anglo-Saxon names. As the form of the English language changed, even the spelling of literate people's names evolved. Hornby has been recorded under many different variations, including Hornby, Hornbie and others.

Early Notables of the Hornby family (pre 1700)

Notables of the family at this time include Henry Horneby (d. 1518), Master of Peterhouse, was perhaps a native of Lincolnshire. He became a member of Clare Hall, and was afterwards elected to a fellowship at Michaelhouse. [4] William Hornby (fl. 1618), was English poet and was, "according to his own account, educated at Peterborough...
Another 54 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Hornby Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Hornby migration to the United States +

For many English families, the political and religious disarray that shrouded England made the far away New World an attractive prospect. On cramped disease-ridden ships, thousands migrated to those British colonies that would eventually become Canada and the United States. Those hardy settlers that survived the journey often went on to make important contributions to the emerging nations in which they landed. Analysis of immigration records indicates that some of the first North American immigrants bore the name Hornby or a variant listed above:

Hornby Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Mercy Hornby, who settled in Virginia in 1735
Hornby Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Mary Hornby and Joseph Hornby, who arrived in Philadelphia with four children in 1820
  • John Hornby, who arrived in New York, NY in 1828 [5]
  • Thomas Hornby, who settled in Newcastle Del. in 1835
  • Edward Orsen Hornby, who arrived in New York in 1839 [5]
  • Charles K Hornby, who landed in Indiana in 1851 [5]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Australia Hornby migration to Australia +

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

Hornby Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Mr. Peter Hornby who was convicted in Liverpool, Merseyside, England for life, transported aboard the "England"on 31st March 1832, arriving in Tasmania (Van Diemen's Land) [6]
  • Robert Hornby, English convict from York, who was transported aboard the "Anson" on September 23, 1843, settling in Van Diemen's Land, Australia [7]
  • Mr. William Hornby, English convict who was convicted in Liverpool, Merseyside, England for 10 years, transported aboard the "Cressy" on 28th April 1843, arriving in Tasmania (Van Diemen's Land) [8]

New Zealand Hornby 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:

Hornby Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Mr. CharlesHornby, British settler travelling from Gravesend, UK aboard the ship "Duke of Portland" arriving in New Plymouth, North Island, New Zealand in 1855 [9]

Contemporary Notables of the name Hornby (post 1700) +

  • Robert Hornby, American Engineer
  • Admiral Sir Phipps Hornby (1785-1867), English Naval Commander, born on 27 April 1785, fifth son of Geoffrey Hornby, rector of Winwick in Lancashire [10]
  • John James Hornby C.V.O. (1826-1909), English rower
  • Sir William "Harry" Henry Hornby (1841-1928), 1st Baronet, an English industrialist and Conservative Party politician
  • John Hornby (1880-1927), English explorer best known for his expeditions in the Arctic region and the Northwest Territory of Canada
  • Clive Hornby (1944-2008), English actor
  • Nick Hornby (b. 1957), English novelist, essayist, lyricist and screenwriter
  • Frank Hornby (1863-1936), English inventor, businessman and politician, responsible for the invention of Meccano; Hornby Model Railways; and Dinky Toys
  • Admiral of the Fleet Sir Geoffrey Thomas Phippe Hornby (1825-1895), English Naval Commander, son of Sir Phipps Hornby
  • Albert Sidney Hornby (1898-1978), English teacher, grammarian and lexicographer who is best known for his "Learner's Dictionary of Current English"
  • ... (Another 4 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

HMS Repulse
  • Mr. Edward Hornby (1913-1942), British Sergeant Marine, who sailed into battle on the HMS Repulse and survived the sinking, but died of wounds sustained in 1942 [11]


  1. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  2. ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  3. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  4. ^ Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. 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)
  6. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 26th April 2022). https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/england
  7. ^ State Library of Queensland. (Retrieved 2015, January 8) Anson voyage to Van Diemen's Land, Australia in 1843 with 499 passengers. Retrieved from http://www.convictrecords.com.au/ships/anson/1843
  8. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 21st May 2021). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/cressy
  9. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 17th October 2018). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html
  10. ^ Wikisource contributors. "Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900." Wikisource . Wikisource , 4 Jun. 2018. Web. 4 August 2020
  11. ^ HMS Repulse Crew members. (Retrieved 2014, April 9) . Retrieved from http://www.forcez-survivors.org.uk/biographies/listrepulsecrew.html


Houseofnames.com on Facebook