Straight History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Of all the Anglo-Saxon names to come from Britain, Straight is one of the most ancient. The name is a result of the original family having lived in any of a number of places called Street, in Hertshire, Kent and Somerset. [1]

Straight is a local surname, which belongs to the category of hereditary surnames. Other types of local surnames include topographic surnames, which could be given to a person who lived beside any physical feature, such as a hill, stream, church or type of tree. Habitation names form the other broad category of surnames that were derived from place-names. They were derived from pre-existing names for towns, villages, parishes, or farmsteads. Other local names are derived from the names of houses, manors, estates, regions, and entire counties. The surname Straight comes from the Old English word stræt, which means Roman road. In the Middle Ages, this word came to denote the main street in a village, and so the surname may also refer to someone who lived on the main street. [2] [3]

Early Origins of the Straight family

The surname Straight was first found in Devon where they held a family seat from ancient times, but by the Hundredorum Rolls of 1273, the name had scattered throughout ancient Britain as those rolls include: Alice de la Strete, Oxfordshire and Alexander de la Strete, Kent. [4]

Kirby's Quest listed John atte Strete, Somerset, 1 Edward III (during the first year's reign of Edward III) [5] and the Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls of 1379 listed Elyas del Strete and Alicia del Strete as holding lands there at that time. [4]

Early History of the Straight family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Straight research. Another 81 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1621, 1689, 1600, 1666, 1625, 1696, 1621, 1679, 1650, 1670, 1650, 1653, 1653, 1624 and 1680 are included under the topic Early Straight History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Straight Spelling Variations

The first dictionaries that appeared in the last few hundred years did much to standardize the English language. Before that time, spelling variations in names were a common occurrence. The language was changing, incorporating pieces of other languages, and the spelling of names changed with it. Straight has been spelled many different ways, including Street, Streat, Strethe, Strete and others.

Early Notables of the Straight family (pre 1700)

Notables of the family at this time include Thomas Street (Streete) (1621-1689), an early English astronomer, best known for his book "Astronomia Carolina, a new theorie of Coelestial Motions" which was used as a reference for many years having at least three editions, eponym of the Street lunar crater. William Streat (1600?-1666), was an English divine, born in Devonshire. Thomas Street (1625-1696), was an English judge and politician from Worcester; Robert Streater (1621-1679), an English landscape, history, still-life and portrait artist, architectural painter and etcher, Serjeant Painter to King Charles II; and John Streater ( fl. 1650-1670), was an...
Another 97 words (7 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Straight Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Straight family to Ireland

Some of the Straight family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 30 words (2 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Straight migration to the United States +

Thousands of English families in this era began to emigrate the New World in search of land and freedom from religious and political persecution. Although the passage was expensive and the ships were dark, crowded, and unsafe, those who made the voyage safely were rewarded with opportunities unavailable to them in their homeland. Research into passenger and immigration lists has revealed some of the very first Straights to arrive in North America:

Straight Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Ada F. Straight, aged 30, who landed in America from Liverpool, in 1893
  • Dora P. Straight, aged 36, who settled in America, in 1894
Straight Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • Grace C. Straight, aged 33, who immigrated to the United States, in 1908
  • Ethel Straight, aged 32, who landed in America from Brighton, England, in 1911

Canada Straight migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Straight Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century
  • Joseph Straight, who landed in Nova Scotia in 1760
  • Joseph Straight, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1761
  • William Straight, who landed in New Brunswick in 1783
  • Mr. William Straight U.E. born in Kinningsworth, Connecticut, USA who settled in Saint John, New Brunswick c. 1783 passenger aboard the "Union" Transport was a Refiner of Iron [6]
  • Mr. William Straight U.E. who settled in Canada c. 1784 [6]

New Zealand Straight 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:

Straight Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Mr. Richard Straight, (b. 1853), aged 21, Cornish farm labourer departing on 4th December 1874 aboard the ship "Wellington" going to Bluff or Otago, New Zealand arriving in port on 19th February 1875 [7]

Contemporary Notables of the name Straight (post 1700) +

  • Susan Straight (b. 1960), American author and National Book Award finalist
  • Michael Whitney Straight (1916-2004), American magazine publisher, novelist, patron of the arts
  • Charles Theodore "Charley" Straight (1891-1940), American pianist, bandleader and composer
  • Willard Dickerman Straight (1880-1918), American investment banker, publisher, reporter and diplomat
  • Air Commodore Whitney Willard Straight CBE MC, DFC (1912-1979), American Grand Prix motor racing driver, aviator, businessman
  • Beatrice Whitney Straight (1914-2001), American Academy Award winning, Emmy Award nominated theatre, film, and television actress


  1. ^ Lowe, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  2. ^ Smith, Eldson Coles, New Dictionary of American Family Names New York, Harper & Row, 1956. Print
  3. ^ Harrison, Henry, Surnames of the United Kingdom: A Concise Etymological Dictionary Baltimore: Geneological Publishing Company, 2013. Print
  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. ^ Rubincam, Milton. The Old United Empire Loyalists List. Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc, 1976. (Originally published as; United Empire Loyalists. The Centennial of the Settlement of Upper Canada. Rose Publishing Company, 1885.) ISBN 0-8063-0331-X
  7. ^ Cornwall Online Parish Clerks. (Retrieved 2018, April 30). Emigrants to other ports, 1872 - 84 [PDF]. Retrieved from http://www.opc-cornwall.org/Resc/pdfs/new_zealand_assisted.pdf


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