Show ContentsStanbury History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The illustrious surname Stanbury finds its origin in the rocky, sea swept coastal area of southwestern England known as Cornwall. Although surnames were fairly widespread in medieval England, people were originally known only by a single name. The process by which hereditary surnames were adopted is extremely interesting. As populations grew, people began to assume an extra name to avoid confusion and to further identify themselves. Under the Feudal System of government, surnames evolved and they often reflected life on the manor and in the field. Lords and their tenants often became known by the name of the feudal territory they owned or lived on. Unlike most Celtic peoples, who favored patronymic names, the Cornish predominantly used local surnames. This was due to the heavy political and cultural influence of the English upon the Cornish People at the time that surnames first came into use. Local surnames were derived from where a person lived, held land, or was born. While many Cornish surnames of this sort appear to be topographic surnames, which were given to people who resided near physical features such as hills, streams, churches, or types of trees, many are actually habitation surnames derived from lost or unrecorded place names. The name Stanbury is a local type of surname and the Stanbury family lived at the manor of Stanbury in Morwinstowe, Cornwall. The name could have from an Old English woman's name for Stanburh 'stone-fortress' [1] or literally meant "the fort or defence of stone." [2]

Early Origins of the Stanbury family

The surname Stanbury was first found in Essex where the first record of the family was found in the Domesday Book of 1086 where Stamburc was listed. [3]

Later in Cornwall, they held a family seat from very ancient times, as Lords of the manor of Stanbury in Morwinstowe. "The manor of Stanbury (which formerly belonged to an ancient family of this name,) was the birth place of Richard Stanbury, who was Bishop of Hereford, and died so early as 1471. In the fifteenth century, it was carried in marriage by an heiress of this family to the Mannings." [4]

Stanbury is common in Devon where it is probably from Stanborough. [5] The Lancashire Stanbury is from Stanbury, in the West Riding of Yorkshire." [1]

"Both may have contributed, but looking at the directories it is clear that Devonshire holds the first place as parent." [6]

A very rare name in early rolls; we did however find Alan Stanborw in the Hundredorum Rolls for Cheshire in 1279 [1] and later, Thomas de Staynburghe in the Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls of 1379. [6]

Early History of the Stanbury family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Stanbury research. Another 67 words (5 lines of text) covering the years 1440, 1446, 1448, 1453, 1474, 1670, 1704, 1705, 1706, 1707, 1712, 1714, 1720, 1772 and 1778 are included under the topic Early Stanbury History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Stanbury Spelling Variations

Cornish surnames are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations. The frequent changes in surnames are due to the fact that the Old and Middle English languages lacked definite spelling rules. The official court languages, which were Latin and French, were also influential on the spelling of a surname. Since the spelling of surnames was rarely consistent in medieval times, and scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded rather than adhering to any specific spelling rules, it was common to find the same individual referred to with different spellings of their surname in the ancient chronicles. Moreover, a large number of foreign names were brought into England, which accelerated and accentuated the alterations to the spelling of various surnames. Lastly, spelling variations often resulted from the linguistic differences between the people of Cornwall and the rest of England. The Cornish spoke a unique Brythonic Celtic language which was first recorded in written documents during the 10th century. However, they became increasingly Anglicized, and Cornish became extinct as a spoken language in 1777, although it has been revived by Cornish patriots in the modern era. The name has been spelled Stanbury, Stanberie, Standborough, Stanborough, Stanbrough, StanBerry, Stanburry, Stansbury, Stainsbury and many more.

Early Notables of the Stanbury family

Notable amongst the family at this time was

  • John StanBerry (or Stanbury) (died 1474), English medieval Bishop of Bangor (1448-1453) and Bishop of Hereford (1453-1474.) He was second son of Walter Stanbury of Morwenstow, Cornwall, by his wife Ci...
  • Nathan Stanbury (c. 1670-1720), Mayor of colonial Philadelphia, Pennsylvania from 1706 to 1707. Little is known on how his family arrived in America, but he did serve as Justice of the Peace of Philad...

United States Stanbury migration to the United States +

An examination into the immigration and passenger lists has discovered a number of people bearing the name Stanbury:

Stanbury Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Josiah Stanbury (also Stanborough) who settled in Lynn Massachusetts in 1630
  • Josiah Stanbury, who landed in Lynn, Massachusetts in 1639 [7]
  • Thomas Stanbury, who arrived in Boston, Massachusetts in 1652 [7]
  • Nath Stanbury, who arrived in New England in 1679 [7]
  • Nathanial Stanbury, who arrived in New England in 1679
Stanbury Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Gertard Stanbury, who arrived in Carolina in 1724 [7]
  • Gertrude Stanbury, who arrived in California in 1724
Stanbury Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • John Stanbury, who landed in New York, NY in 1833 [7]

Canada Stanbury migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Stanbury Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century

Australia Stanbury migration to Australia +

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

Stanbury Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Mr. John Stanbury, English convict who was convicted in Exeter, Devon, England for 7 years, transported aboard the "Eden" on 30th September 1848, arriving in Tasmania (Van Diemen's Island) [9]
  • Thomas Stanbury, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Cheapside" in 1849 [10]
  • John Stanbury, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Cheapside" in 1849 [10]
  • Nancy Stanbury, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Cheapside" in 1849 [10]
  • Mary Stanbury, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Cheapside" in 1849 [10]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

New Zealand Stanbury 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:

Stanbury Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Mrs. Betsy Stanbury, (b. 1825), aged 37, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship 'Mermaid' arriving in Lyttelton, Christchurch, South Island, New Zealand on 26th December 1862 [11]
  • Mr. Joshua F. Stanbury, (b. 1825), aged 37, British mason travelling from London aboard the ship 'Mermaid' arriving in Lyttelton, Christchurch, South Island, New Zealand on 26th December 1862 [11]
  • Mr. George Stanbury, (b. 1851), aged 11, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship 'Mermaid' arriving in Lyttelton, Christchurch, South Island, New Zealand on 26th December 1862 [11]
  • Mr. John Fras. Stanbury, (b. 1852), aged 10, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship 'Mermaid' arriving in Lyttelton, Christchurch, South Island, New Zealand on 26th December 1862 [11]

West Indies Stanbury migration to West Indies +

The British first settled the British West Indies around 1604. They made many attempts but failed in some to establish settlements on the Islands including Saint Lucia and Grenada. By 1627 they had managed to establish settlements on St. Kitts (St. Christopher) and Barbados, but by 1641 the Spanish had moved in and destroyed some of these including those at Providence Island. The British continued to expand the settlements including setting the First Federation in the British West Indies by 1674; some of the islands include Barbados, Bermuda, Cayman Island, Turks and Caicos, Jamaica and Belize then known as British Honduras. By the 1960's many of the islands became independent after the West Indies Federation which existed from 1958 to 1962 failed due to internal political conflicts. After this a number of Eastern Caribbean islands formed a free association. [12]
Stanbury Settlers in West Indies in the 17th Century
  • Roger Stanbury, who arrived in Jamaica in 1661

Contemporary Notables of the name Stanbury (post 1700) +

  • Nathan Stanbury, American politician, Mayor of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 1706-07 [13]
  • Sidney Stanbury, Professor of Medicine
  • Gilbert Stanbury, Diplomat
  • Richard Stanbury, Diplomat

  1. Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  2. Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  3. Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
  4. Hutchins, Fortescue, The History of Cornwall, from the Earliest Records and Traditions to the Present Time. London: William Penaluna, 1824. Print
  5. Barber, Henry, British Family Names London: Elliot Stock, 62 Paternoster Row, 1894. Print.
  6. Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  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)
  8. Seary E.R., Family Names of the Island of Newfoundland, Montreal: McGill's-Queen's Universtity Press 1998 ISBN 0-7735-1782-0
  9. Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 15th November 2021). Retrieved from
  10. State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) The CHEAPSIDE 1849. Retrieved from
  11. New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 17th October 2018). Retrieved from
  13. The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, November 13) . Retrieved from on Facebook