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

Origins Available: English, Italian

Where did the English Toney family come from? When did the Toney family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the Toney family history?

The name Toney reached English shores for the first time with the ancestors of the Toney family as they migrated following the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Toney family lived in Leicestershire. Their name, however, is a reference to Toni, Normandy, the family's place of residence prior to the Norman Conquest of England in 1066.

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Anglo-Norman names tend to be marked by an enormous number of spelling variations. This is largely due to the fact that Old and Middle English lacked any spelling rules when Norman French was introduced in the 11th century. The languages of the English courts at that time were French and Latin. These various languages mixed quite freely in the evolving social milieu. The final element of this mix is that medieval scribes spelled words according to their sounds rather than any definite rules, so a name was often spelled in as many different ways as the number of documents it appeared in. The name was spelled Tone, Toney and others.

First found in Leicestershire where Ralph de Toni received lands of the Lordship of Belvoir for his services as Standard bearer at Hastings in 1066 A.D.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Toney research. Another 227 words(16 lines of text) covering the year 1763 is included under the topic Early Toney History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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More information is included under the topic Early Toney Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Some of the Toney family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 89 words(6 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Because of the political and religious discontent in England, families began to migrate abroad in enormous numbers. Faced with persecution and starvation at home, the open frontiers and generally less oppressive social environment of the New World seemed tantalizing indeed to many English people. The trip was difficult, and not all made it unscathed, but many of those who did get to Canada and the United States made important contributions to the young nations in which they settled. Some of the first North American settlers with Toney name or one of its variants:

Toney Settlers in United States in the 19th Century


  • James Toney, who arrived in New York, NY in 1841
  • J T Toney, who landed in San Francisco, California in 1850
  • Patrick Toney arrived in Philadelphia in 1876
  • John Toney arrived in Philadelphia in 1877

Toney Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century


  • John Toney, aged 28, a gardener, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Clifton" in 1842
  • Hannah Toney, aged 4, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Clifton" in 1842

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  • Anthony Toney (b. 1962), former professional American football running back
  • Kevin Kraig Toney (b. 1953), American jazz keyboardist
  • Oscar Toney (b. 1939), American soul singer
  • Andrew Toney (b. 1957), American former NBA professional basketball player
  • Fred Toney (1888-1953), American right-handed pitcher
  • James "Lights-Out" Toney (b. 1968), professional boxer


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  • The Toney Family History by Elma Henning.
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  1. Shirley, Evelyn Philip. Noble and Gentle Men of England Or Notes Touching The Arms and Descendants of the Ancient Knightley and Gentle Houses of England Arranged in their Respective Counties 3rd Edition. Westminster: John Bowyer Nichols and Sons, 1866. Print.
  2. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  3. Filby, P. William and Mary K Meyer. Passenger and Immigration Lists Index in Four Volumes. Detroit: Gale Research, 1985. Print. (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8).
  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. MacAulay, Thomas Babington. History of England from the Accession of James the Second 4 volumes. New York: Harper and Brothers, 1879. Print.
  6. Fairbairn. Fairbain's book of Crests of the Families of Great Britain and Ireland, 4th Edition 2 volumes in one. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1968. Print.
  7. Burke, Sir Bernard. General Armory Of England, Scotland, Ireland and Wales. Ramsbury: Heraldry Today. Print.
  8. Bede, The Venerable. Historia Ecclesiatica Gentis Anglorum (The Ecclesiastical History Of the English People). Available through Internet Medieval Sourcebook the Fordham University Centre for Medieval Studies. Print.
  9. Best, Hugh. Debrett's Texas Peerage. New York: Coward-McCann, 1983. Print. (ISBN 069811244X).
  10. Hitching, F.K and S. Hitching. References to English Surnames in 1601-1602. Walton On Thames: 1910. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0181-3).
  11. ...


This page was last modified on 13 November 2014 at 22:39.

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