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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright © 2000 - 2016

Origins Available: English, Scottish

Where did the Scottish Watts family come from? What is the Scottish Watts family crest and coat of arms? When did the Watts family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the Watts family history?

The earliest forms of hereditary surnames in Scotland were the patronymic surnames, which are derived from the father's given name, and metronymic surnames, which are derived from the mother's given name. Scottish patronymic names emerged as early as the mid-9th century. The patronyms were derived from a variety of given names that were of many different origins. The surname Watts is derived from from the personal name Walter, meaning strong warrior.

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The frequent translations of surnames from and into Gaelic, accounts for the multitude of spelling variations found in Scottish surnames. Furthermore, the spelling of surnames was rarely consistent because medieval scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded, rather than adhering to any specific spelling rules. The different versions of a surname, such as the inclusion of the patronymic prefix "Mac", frequently indicated a religious or Clan affiliation, or even a division of the family. Moreover, a large number of foreign names were brought into Scotland, accelerating accentuating the alterations to various surnames. The name Watts has also been spelled Watts, Wathes, Wattys, Wath, Watt and others.

First found in Worcestershire. They held a family seat here from early times, and were descended from Simon Wathes, a soldier of fortune, who accompanied King Stephen into England in the year 1135. John Wathes was Lord of the manor of Eston in that county in 1347. His son, William Wathes, was father of Simon Wattys. Sir Richard Wattys, his son, fought under the banner of York at the Battle of Wakefield where he died leaving Thomas Wattys the manor of Whitefield in Northampton.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Watts research. Another 436 words (31 lines of text) covering the years 1446, 1511, 1586, 1596, 1609, 1615, 1663, and 1796 are included under the topic Early Watts History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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

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Some of the Watts family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 91 words (6 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Some of the first North American settlers with Watts name or one of its variants:

Watts Settlers in United States in the 17th Century


  • Henry Watts settled in Maine in 1630
  • Jonas Watts settled in Virginia in 1635
  • James Watts, aged 35, landed in Barbados in 1635
  • Jo Watts, aged 19, arrived in Barbados in 1635
  • Jonas Watts, aged 21, arrived in Virginia in 1635


Watts Settlers in United States in the 18th Century


  • Robert Watts settled in New York in 1700 from Edinburgh
  • Daniel Watts, who landed in Virginia in 1703
  • Experiance Watts, who arrived in Virginia in 1703
  • Frances Watts, who landed in Georgia in 1743
  • Captain Watts settled in Boston in 1755

Watts Settlers in United States in the 19th Century


  • Archibald Watts, aged 25, arrived in Virginia in 1812
  • Joseph Watts, aged 28, landed in New York in 1812
  • Margaret Watts, who landed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1816
  • Charles Watts, who landed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1816
  • Jane Watts, who arrived in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1816


Watts Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century


  • Robert Watts who settled in Bona Vista in Newfoundland in 1708

Watts Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century


  • Henry Watts, who arrived in Canada in 1815
  • James Watts, aged 36, a weaver, arrived in Saint John, NB in 1833 aboard the brig "Ugoni" from Belfast
  • Janet Watts, aged 33, arrived in Saint John, NB in 1833 aboard the brig "Ugoni" from Belfast
  • Jane Watts, aged 13, arrived in Saint John, NB in 1833 aboard the brig "Ugoni" from Belfast
  • Charles Watts, aged 12, arrived in Saint John, NB in 1833 aboard the brig "Ugoni" from Belfast


Watts Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century


  • Richard Watts, English convict from Middlesex, who was transported aboard the "Ann" on August 1809, settling in New South Wales, Australia
  • Joseph Watts, English convict from Derby, who was transported aboard the "Adamant" on March 16, 1821, settling in New South Wales, Australia
  • William Watts, English convict from Derby, who was transported aboard the "Adamant" on March 16, 1821, settling in New South Wales, Australia
  • John Watts, English convict from Wiltshire, who was transported aboard the "Asia" on April 1st, 1822, settling in New South Wales, Austraila
  • Isaac Watts, English convict from Bristol, who was transported aboard the "Albion" on May 29, 1828, settling in New South Wales, Australia


Watts Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century


  • John Watts landed in Wellington, New Zealand in 1840 aboard the ship Glenbervie
  • William Watts landed in Wellington, New Zealand in 1841 aboard the ship Arab
  • William Watts, aged 27, a farm labourer, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Arab" in 1841
  • Esther Watts, aged 26, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Arab" in 1841
  • Harriet Ann Watts, aged 3, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Arab" in 1841


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  • John Watts De Peyster Jr. (1841-1873), Union Army officer during the American Civil War
  • John Watts de Peyster Sr. (1821-1907), American author on the art of war, philanthropist, Adjutant General of the New York National Guard
  • John Watts (1778-1823), American merchant captain from Virginia, eponym of the destroyer USS Watts (DD-567)
  • André Watts (b. 1946), German-born, American classical pianist and professor
  • Mary Stanbery Watts (1868-1958), American novelist from Delaware County, Ohio
  • Heather Watts (b. 1953), American principal ballerina with New York City Ballet
  • Richard Watts Jr. (1898-1981), American theatre critic
  • Alan Wilson Watts (1915-1973), English-born American philosopher and popularizer of Buddhism
  • Ronald Lampman Watts CC FRSC (1929-2015), Canadian academic, 15th Principal and Vice-chancellor of Queen's University from 1974 until 1984
  • Sir John Augustus Fitzroy Watts KCMG CBE (1921-2015), Grenadian dentist, politician and co-founder of the Grenada National Party

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  • A History of the Watts Family by George B. Watts.
  • Thomas Watts and Alexander McElwain: Their Ancestors, Descendants, and Related Families by Dorothy Claybroke Watts Brooks.
  • Watts, 1687-1975: Ancestry and Descendants of Ridley Watts by Harriett Mott Stryker-Rodda.
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The motto was originally a war cry or slogan. Mottoes first began to be shown with arms in the 14th and 15th centuries, but were not in general use until the 17th century. Thus the oldest coats of arms generally do not include a motto. Mottoes seldom form part of the grant of arms: Under most heraldic authorities, a motto is an optional component of the coat of arms, and can be added to or changed at will; many families have chosen not to display a motto.

Motto: Fide et fiducia
Motto Translation: By fidelity and confidence.

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  1. Matthews, John. Matthews' American Armoury and Blue Book. London: John Matthews, 1911. Print.
  2. Browning, Charles H. Americans of Royal Descent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  3. Bolton, Charles Knowles. Scotch Irish Pioneers In Ulster and America. Montana: Kessinger Publishing. Print.
  4. Moncrieffe, Sir Ian of That Ilk and David Hicks. The Highland Clans The Dynastic Origins, Cheifs and Background of the Clans. New York: C.N. Potter, 1968. Print.
  5. Dorward, David. Scottish Surnames. Glasgow: Harper Collins, 1995. Print.
  6. Bell, Robert. The Book of Ulster Surnames. Belfast: Blackstaff, 1988. Print. (ISBN 10-0856404160).
  7. Leyburn, James Graham. The Scotch-Irish A Social History. Chapel Hill: UNC Press, 1962. Print. (ISBN 0807842591).
  8. Paul, Sir James Balfour. An Ordinary of Arms Contained in the Public Register of All Arms and Bearings in Scotland Second Edition. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1903. Print.
  9. Bowman, George Ernest. The Mayflower Reader A Selection of Articales from The Mayflower Descendent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  10. Bolton, Charles Knowles. Bolton's American Armory. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1964. Print.
  11. ...

The Watts Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Watts 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 29 December 2015 at 18:19.

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