Instone History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Instone is a name of ancient Anglo-Saxon origin and comes from a family once having lived in either of the parishes named Henton, in the counties of Oxfordshire and Somerset.

The Oxfordshire liberty dates back to the Domesday Book of 1086 when it was first listed as Hentone. [1] The Somerset parish actually dates back further to Saxon times when it was known as Hentun in 1065. Both literally meant "farmstead where hens are kept," from the Old English "henn" + "tun." [2]

Early Origins of the Instone family

The surname Instone was first found in Hampshire where Adam de Henton was listed in the Pipe Rolls of 1200. Later, Laurence de Henton was found in the Assize Rolls of Somerset in 1258. [3]

The Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 had two listings of the family: William de Henton, Oxfordshire; and Alex, de Henton, Somerset. [4]

Again in Somerset, we found two more early entries for the family: Hugh de Hentone; and Walter de Hentone, both were listed 1 Edward III (during the first year of King Edward III's reign.) [5]

Simon Henton or Heinton ( fl. 1360), Dominican, was born at Henton, near Winchester, became a Dominican friar, and eventually provincial of the order in England. [6]

Early History of the Instone family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Instone research. Another 96 words (7 lines of text) covering the years 1086, 1273 and 1545 are included under the topic Early Instone History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Instone 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. Instone has been recorded under many different variations, including Henton, Henston, Hennton, Hentone, Heanton and others.

Early Notables of the Instone family (pre 1700)

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


United States Instone 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 Instone or a variant listed above:

Instone Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Thomas Instone, who arrived in New York in 1846 [7]
  • William Instone, who landed in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1866 [7]

New Zealand Instone 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:

Instone Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • John Instone, aged 21, a labourer, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Glenlora" in 1873

Contemporary Notables of the name Instone (post 1700) +

  • Alice Instone (b. 1975), English artist, known for her paintings of famous women including Annie Lennox, Emilia Fox, Baroness Kennedy, Baroness Scotland and Professor Baroness Greenfield and many more
  • Sam Instone (b. 1977), English businessman, founder and current Chief Executive of AES International
  • Sir Samuel Instone (1878-1937), English shipping and aviation entrepreneur, founder of the Instone Air Line, an early British airline which operated from 1919 to 1924 and then amalgamated with Imperial Airways


  1. ^ Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
  2. ^ Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
  3. ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  4. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  5. ^ Dickinson, F.H., Kirby's Quest for Somerset of 16th of Edward the 3rd London: Harrison and Sons, Printers in Ordinary to Her Majesty, St, Martin's Lane, 1889. Print.
  6. ^ Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print
  7. ^ 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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