Shilton History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

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. [1]

Early Origins of the Shilton family

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." [2]

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." [2]

Early History of the Shilton family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Shilton research. Another 89 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1561, 1700, 1460, 1529, 1475, 1555, 1476, 1539, 1612, 1601, 1650, 1649, 1626, 1647, 1601, 1705, 1537, 1604 and 1579 are included under the topic Early Shilton History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Shilton Spelling Variations

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.

Early Notables of the Shilton family (pre 1700)

Notables of this surname at this time include: John Shelton, also known as John Skelton (c.1460-1529), an English poet; Rauf Shelton of Yorkshire; Anne Shelton nee Boleyn (1475-1555), aunt of Anne Boleyn, second wife of Henry VIII; and Sir John Shelton (1476-1539), courtier during the reign of Henry VIII of England. Thomas Shelton (fl. 1612), was the first translator of 'Don Quixote' into English, may possibly be identical with the Thomas Sheldon who was fourth son of William Sheldon of Broadway, Worcestershire, a kinsman of Edward Sheldon, of Beoley. [3] Thomas Shelton (1601-1650?), was an English stenographer, descended from an old Norfolk family...
Another 144 words (10 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Shilton Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Shilton family to Ireland

Some of the Shilton family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 41 words (3 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


New Zealand Shilton 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:

Shilton Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Mr. F. Shilton, British settler travelling from Plymouth aboard the ship "Tongariro" arriving in Auckland, New Zealand in 1887 [4]


  1. ^ Harrison, Henry, Surnames of the United Kingdom: A Concise Etymological Dictionary Baltimore: Geneological Publishing Company, 2013. Print
  2. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  3. ^ Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print
  4. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 26th March 2019). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html


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