Wotton History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The ancestors of the name Wotton date back to the Anglo-Saxon tribes of Britain. The name is derived from when the Wotton family lived in the county of Kent. Their name, however, is derived from the Old English words wudu, meaning wood, and tun, meaning enclosure or settlement, and indicates that the original bearer of the name lived in a town by a wood. "Besides parishes in many counties, there are innumerable manors, hamlets, and single houses in England so called. The word is Anglo-Saxon, and signifies the woody enclosure." [1]

There are numerous places named Wooton throughout Britain, the oldest is Wooton Bassett in Wiltshire that dates back to 680, followed by Wooton Wawen in Warwickshire that dates back to 716-37 and is obviously a Anglo-Saxon place name. [2]

Early Origins of the Wotton family

The surname Wotton was first found in Kent where they held a family seat at Marlay, before and after the Norman Conquest in 1066. By the Hundredorum Rolls of 1273, the name was scattered throughout Britain as in Robert de Wottone and Thomas de Wodeton in Devon, Fredeshet de Wottone in Buckinghamshire, John atte Wodeton in London and John de Wodeton or John de Wutton in Oxfordshire. [3]

"Wotton, [in the parish of Landrake, Cornwall] which was formerly a seat belonging to an ancient family of the same name, has been totally demolished; but the estate connected with the house was carried with the heiress of Wotton to a branch of the Courtenays, after which it passed in a similar manner to the family of Rowse. " [4]

Early History of the Wotton family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Wotton research. Another 87 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1497, 1567, 1541, 1567, 1489, 1551, 1521, 1587, 1521, 1587, 1548, 1628, 1616, 1618, 1604, 1620, 1587, 1630, 1568, 1639, 1682, 1764, 1582, 1669 and 1607 are included under the topic Early Wotton History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Wotton Spelling Variations

It is only in the last few hundred years that the English language has been standardized. For that reason, early Anglo-Saxon surnames like Wotton are characterized by many spelling variations. As the English language changed and incorporated elements of other European languages, even literate people changed the spelling of their names. The variations of the name Wotton include: Wooton, Wootton, Wootten, Wooten, Wooter, Wouters and others.

Early Notables of the Wotton family (pre 1700)

Notables of this surname at this time include: Nicholas Wotton (c. 1497-1567), an English diplomat, Ambassador to France during the reign of Mary, Dean of Canterbury (1541-1567); and his brother, Sir Edward Wotton (1489-1551), Treasurer of Calais and a privy councillor to Edward VI of England; Thomas Wotton (1521-1587), Sheriff of Kent; Thomas Wotton (1521-1587); and his son, Edward Wotton, 1st Baron Wotton (1548-1628), an English diplomat and administrator, Lord of...
Another 71 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Wotton Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Wotton migration to the United States +

Many English families tired of political and religious strife left Britain for the new colonies in North America. Although the trip itself offered no relief - conditions on the ships were extremely cramped, and many travelers arrived diseased, starving, and destitute - these immigrants believed the opportunities that awaited them were worth the risks. Once in the colonies, many of the families did indeed prosper and, in turn, made significant contributions to the culture and economies of the growing colonies. An inquiry into the early roots of North American families has revealed a number of immigrants bearing the name Wotton or a variant listed above:

Wotton Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Thomas Wotton, an English surgeon who settled in Jamestown, Virginia in 1607
  • William Wotton, who arrived in Virginia in 1653 [5]
  • George Wotton, who landed in America in 1654-1679 [5]
  • John Wotton, who landed in Virginia in 1658 [5]
  • Rebecca Wotton, who arrived in Virginia in 1664 [5]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Wotton Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Henry Alfred Wotton, who arrived in America in 1885 [5]
  • Lewes Wotton, who arrived in Virginia in 1887 [5]

Australia Wotton migration to Australia +

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

Wotton Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • William Wotton, aged 26, a labourer, who arrived in South Australia in 1855 aboard the ship "John Banks" [6]
  • John Wotton, aged 22, a labourer, who arrived in South Australia in 1855 aboard the ship "Taymouth Castle" [7]

West Indies Wotton 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. [8]
Wotton Settlers in West Indies in the 17th Century
  • George Wotton, who settled in Barbados in 1654

Contemporary Notables of the name Wotton (post 1700) +

  • Thomas Wotton (d. 1766), English antiquarian, compiler of the The English Baronetage (1727, 1741)
  • Paul Anthony Wotton (b. 1977), English footballer
  • Roger Corfield Anson Wotton (1919-2012), Australian politician, Member for Burrendong (1968–1971), (1973-1981) and for Castlereagh (1981–1991)
  • David Wotton AM (b. 1942), Australian former politician, Member for Heysen (1975-2002)
  • Mark Wotton (b. 1973), Canadian NHL ice hockey player


  1. ^ Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  2. ^ Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
  3. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  4. ^ Hutchins, Fortescue, The History of Cornwall, from the Earliest Records and Traditions to the Present Time. London: William Penaluna, 1824. Print
  5. ^ 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)
  6. ^ South Australian Register Wednesday 30th May 1855. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) John Banks 1855. Retrieved http://www.theshipslist.com/ships/australia/johnbanks1855.shtml
  7. ^ South Australian Register Tuesday 26th June 1855. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) Taymouth Castle 1855. Retrieved http://www.theshipslist.com/ships/australia/taymouthcastle1855.shtml.
  8. ^ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/British_West_Indies


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