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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright 2000 - 2015

Where did the Scottish Nesbit family come from? What is the Scottish Nesbit family crest and coat of arms? When did the Nesbit family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the Nesbit family history?

The ancient roots of the Nesbit family are found in the Scottish-English border region where the ancestors of the name Nesbit lived among the people of the Boernician tribe. The Nesbit family lived in any of several places in the Border region of Scotland called Nesbitt or Nisbit. There were hamlets of East Nisbet and West Nisbet in Berwickshire, a village of Nisbet in Roxburghshire, a Nesbit in Northumberland, and a township of Nesbit in County Durham. These place names derive from the Middle English words nese, meaning "nose," and bit, meaning a "piece of ground;" as such, these place names are thought to have refered to geographic features resembling a nose. The surname may well have arisen independently from these different place names.


Since medieval scribes spelled words according to sound, and since there were no consistent rules for the translation of rules from Gaelic to English, spelling variations are extremely common in Boernician names of this vintage. Nesbit has been spelled Nisbet, Nysbit, Nispett, Nispet, Nisbit, Nisbett, Nessbitt, Nessbit, Nesbyth, Nesbitt, Naibet, Nesbeth, Nesbet, Naisbitt, Naisbit, Nesbett, Naisbett, Naibett and many more.

First found in Berwickshire an ancient county of Scotland, presently part of the Scottish Borders Council Area, located in the eastern part of the Borders Region of Scotland where they held a family seat from early times and King David I confirmed a charter (now in the archives of Durham Cathedral) granting the lands of Nisbet to Aldan de Nisbet, the founder of the line of Nisbet in 1139. According to family lore, they descend from Gospatric, Earl of Northumbria (d. 1073).


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Nesbit research. Another 705 words(50 lines of text) covering the years 1160, 1255, 1296, 1340, 1433, 1446, 1456, 1493, 1594, 1632, 1580, 1660, 1630, 1641, 1559, 1605, 1625, 1627, 1685, 1657, 1725, 1609, 1687, 1664 and 1677 are included under the topic Early Nesbit History in all our PDF Extended History products.


Another 191 words(14 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Nesbit Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.


Some of the Nesbit family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 171 words(12 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.


Many of the Boernician-Scottish families who crossed the Atlantic settled along the eastern seaboard in communities that would become the backbone of the emerging nations of the United States and Canada. In the War of Independence, American families that remained loyal to the Crown moved north into Canada and became known as United Empire Loyalists. The ancestral culture of all of these proud Scottish families remains alive in North America in the 20th century through Clan societies and highland games. Early North American immigration records have revealed a number of people bearing the name Nesbit or a variant listed above:

Nesbit Settlers in United States in the 17th Century

  • Hugh Nesbit, who came to South Carolina in 1684
  • William Nesbit, who settled in South Carolina in 1685

Nesbit Settlers in United States in the 18th Century

  • Jeremiah Nesbit, who arrived in Charles Town [Charleston], South Carolina in 1768
  • Sarah Nesbit, who arrived in Charles Town [Charleston], South Carolina in 1768
  • Archibald Nesbit, who arrived in New York in 1774
  • David Nesbit, who arrived in Mississippi in 1799

Nesbit Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • Hugh Nesbit, who landed in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1808
  • William Nesbit, who landed in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1809
  • James Nesbit, who landed in America in 1811
  • Anne Nesbit, who landed in New York, NY in 1817
  • Alexander Nesbit, who arrived in New York in 1835

Nesbit Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century

  • E.P. Nesbit arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Susannah" in 1849
  • Mary Nesbit, aged 19, a servant, arrived in South Australia in 1850 aboard the ship "Joseph Soames"
  • Mary A Nesbit, aged 19, a servant, arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Joseph Somes" in 1850

Nesbit Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century

  • E. Nesbit arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Chile" in 1871


  • Evelyn Nesbit (1884-1967), American artists' model and chorus girl
  • Jamar Kendric Nesbit (b. 1976), American football guard
  • Jeff Nesbit, American author
  • Edith Nesbit (1858-1924), English author and poet
  • Steven Roberto Nesbit (b. 1936), former New Zealand rugby union footballer
  • Anthony "Tony" Nesbit, former Australian rules footballer
  • Charlton Nesbit (1775-1838), English wood engraver
  • John Collis Nesbit (1818-1862), English agricultural chemist
  • Edith Nesbit (1858-1924), English author and poet who wrote or collaborated on over 60 books of fiction for children


  • German Burnett (G.B.) Kyle of Logon County, Arkansas, and His Wayne County, Tennessee, Ancestors; Duckworth, Kyle, Nesbitt, et al. By Edith Madeline Replogle Raymond.

Nesbit Clan Badge
Nesbit Clan Badge

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A clan is a social group made up of a number of distinct branch-families that actually descended from, or accepted themselves as descendants of, a common ancestor. The word clan means simply children. The idea of the clan as a community is necessarily based around this idea of heredity and is most often ruled according to a patriarchal structure. For instance, the clan chief represented the hereditary "parent" of the entire clan. The most prominent example of this form of society is the Scottish Clan system...



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  1. Scots Kith and Kin And Illustrated Map Revised 2nd Edition. Edinburgh: Clan House/Albyn. Print.
  2. Leyburn, James Graham. The Scotch-Irish A Social History. Chapel Hill: UNC Press, 1962. Print. (ISBN 0807842591).
  3. Dorward, David. Scottish Surnames. Glasgow: Harper Collins, 1995. Print.
  4. Browne, James. The History of Scotland it's Highlands, Regiments and Clans 8 Volumes. Edinburgh: Francis A Niccolls & Co, 1909. Print.
  5. Prebble, John. The Highland Clearances. London: Secker & Warburg, 1963. Print.
  6. Moncrieffe, Sir Ian of That Ilk and Don Pottinger. Clan Map Scotland of Old. Edinburgh: Bartholomew and Son, 1983. Print.
  7. Passenger Lists of Vessels Arriving at Galveston Texas 1896-1951. National Archives Washington DC. Print.
  8. Samuelsen, W. David. New York City Passenger List Manifests Index 1820 - 1824. North Salt Lake, Utah: Accelerated Indexing Systems International, 1986. Print.
  9. Le Patourel, John. The Norman Empire. New York: Oxford University Press, 1976. Print. (ISBN 0-19-822525-3).
  10. Moncrieffe, Sir Ian of That Ilk and David Hicks. The Highland Clans The Dynastic Origins, Cheifs and Background of the Clans. New York: C.N. Potter, 1968. Print.
  11. ...

The Nesbit Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Nesbit 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 22 November 2014 at 11:41.

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