An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright © 2000 - 2016
The origins of the Shilton name lie with England's ancient Anglo-Saxon culture. It comes from when the family lived in the township of Shelton found in five counties in England. Bedfordshire, Norfolk, Nottinghamshire, Salop and Staffordshire all had townships by the name of Shelton. This place-name was originally derived by the Old English elements scylf and tun, which denoted a ledge or plateau in the landscape.
The surname Shilton was first found in Norfolk at Shelton, a parish, in the union and hundred of Defwade. "This place was anciently the property of the Sheltons, who were owners of the Hall, a castellated structure long since pulled down. From that family the estate passed to Sir Robert Houghton, one of the justices of the king's bench."  Some of the family held estates in Great Snoring, Norfolk. "The living is a rectory, with that of Thursford annexed, valued in the king's books at £24, and in the gift of St. John's College, Cambridge: the tithes have been commuted for £539, and the glebe comprises 37 acres, with a house, erected by Sir Richard Shelton. The church is a good structure in the later English style, with a lofty embattled tower, and contains some ancient monuments and brasses to the Shelton and other families." 
Before the last few hundred years, the English language had no fast system of spelling rules. For that reason, spelling variations are commonly found in early Anglo-Saxon surnames. Over the years, many variations of the name Shilton were recorded, including Shelton, Sheltone and others.
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Shilton research. Another 125 words (9 lines of text) covering the years 1460, 1529, 1475, 1555, 1476, 1539, 1705, 1537, 1604 and 1579 are included under the topic Early Shilton History in all our PDF Extended History products.
Another 195 words (14 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Shilton Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.
Some of the Shilton family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 71 words (5 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.
To escape oppression and starvation at that time, many English families left for the "open frontiers" of the New World with all its perceived opportunities. In droves people migrated to the many British colonies, those in North America in particular, paying high rates for passages in cramped, unsafe ships. Although many of the settlers did not make the long passage alive, those who did see the shores of North America perceived great opportunities before them. Many of the families that came from England went on to make essential contributions to the emerging nations of Canada and the United States. Research into various historical records revealed some of first members of the Shilton family emigrate to North America: Richard and Francis Shelton who settled in Virginia in 1638; Samuel and Esther Shelton settled in Boston Massachusetts in 1765 with Hannah; Samuel Shelton settled in Barbados with his servants in 1680.
The Shilton Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Shilton 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 12 February 2016 at 11:43.