Denton Family Bible

Denton family – original coat of arms with ‘in chief’ three sable cinquefoils (black five-leaved flowers) and bars of argent (silver) and gule (red)
Denton family – full coat of arms with three martlets and a lion crest, in some cases the crest is a martlet or eagle (following Roman usage)

Index of contents


by Bob Denton

©2016 – Issue 2, November 2019


To: John Denton (1562-1617)
of Cardew Hall, Dalston, Cumbria CA5 7JQ

I owe much of the early detail of this family history to John, one of England’s early historians. Albeit a remote relative as just a 9C13* (ninth cousin thirteen times removed), his account and family trees of my direct relatives proved invaluable. John prepared these for a significant 1603/4 manuscript he entitled Accompt of the most considerable Estates and Families in the county of Cumberland. It detailed both the topography and gentry of Cumberland from the Conquest until the reign of King James I. More on John later.

It made me ponder whether perhaps my recent confirmed interest in history and the Open University history degree courses was somewhere in the genes? More on genes below in ‘Where do I come from originally?’

John’s lasting legacy inspires me to be academically vigilant and rigorous in preparing, some four hundred years after his opus, my own Accompt of the Denton family.

Note: If you have genealogical software I can send you a GEDCOM file including 8300+ individuals, and all supporting documents – though 5,000 of these are our American cousins.

Quick Preview

These are highlights of this thirty-generation, 1000-year+ journey:

  • Like all humans, our story started in East Africa
  • Dentons purloined stones from Hadrian’s Wall to build their homes and castles
  • some sources suggest our early ancestor Bueth-barn was Macbeth
  • early Dentons earned their spurs fighting along the Scottish borders
  • one Denton had a castle in Scotland burned from under him by Robert the Bruce
  • another Denton knight became may have started the Hundred Years’ War
  • a Denton tomb’s cryptic inscription suggests he may have been an early Freemason
  • Dentons were engaged on both sides of the Wars of the Roses
  • a great-uncle avenged his father’s murder, then killed a priest, yet walked free
  • for almost three centuries Dentons were prominent landowners and MPs
  • one 16thcentury Denton wife became a Quaker
  • a Denton family sailed in the Great Migration, forming an early colony on Long Island…
  • …then started a church there that is still extant today
  • a descendant of this migrant was the source for the naming of Denton, Texas
  • one Denton was royal physician to Charles I and Charles II
  • another Denton married the niece of John Hampden, the leading Parliamentarian
  • Oliver Cromwell personally sacked the Dentons’ Buckinghamshire family seat
  • a Denton patrician was sent by Cromwell to the Tower where he died
  • while imprisoned his second son died in a Royalist attempt to retake Abingdon
  • we learn of the legal status in 1688 of wives who run off with a friend
  • a mining disaster in 1888 has been memorialised across five Denton generations
  • one Denton blacksmith ended up dying in Toxteth workhouse, Liverpool
  • Dentons migrated south from Durham to Paris in four modern generations

Or, use our more conventional index