Dufton Family History and Genealogy
Over many years, and with the invaluable help of Michael Dufton of Melbourne and John G Dufton of Yorkshire, it has been possible to gather a wealth of information regarding the name Dufton.
The purpose of this page is to simply keep all our information in one convenient location.
And, if the information is of some interest to others, now or in the future....... then so much the better.
But, sadly the time has now arrived for the three of us to call a halt to our researching.
So please feel free to use the information as you want.
The family name Dufton originates from the village of Dufton in the old English county of Westmorland.
About the year 670 a group of Angle farmers travelled across the fells and moors from the English kingdom of Northumbria, and settled in small clusters of farms along the fellside of the Eden valley. One of their settlements was called Dufton, from the old English words DUF meaning dove, and TON meaning farmstead.
Hence..... Dufton the place of doves.
The family name Dufton can be traced back to a Norse chieftain named Lyulf. This warlord had been granted large areas of Cumbria and Northern England by William the Conquer, on condition that he displayed loyalty and kept peace in this distant part of the kingdom.
In 1135 king Henry I confirmed these lands on Phorne, Lyulfs son, and granted him the title of Baron of Greystoke. One of Phornes younger sons was granted the manor of Brampton, part of the Greystoke estate. He took the title of Baron of Brampton, in turn his younger son was given the manor of Dufton, part of the Brampton estate, he took the title Baron of Dufton. He was the first Dufton. Records indicate his was Ranulph de Dufton. The family remain at Dufton for the next 200 years.
The first record of a person having the name Dufton was Robert de Dufton who lived in the village of Dufton in 1176. Robert was in trouble with King Henry for not defending nearby Appleby castle when it was captured by the Scot's army in 1174. Robert's name appears on the Westmorland pipe rolls, and he is fined 40 shillings by the king.
Robert's son John de Dufton was rewarded by King John for supporting him in troubled times, he was granted the manor and barony of Dufton. But John de Dufton's son, Robert de Dufton was outlawed by King Edward. However, Robert's son Humphrey de Dufton fared even worse, he was hanged by the king Edward I.
The Duftons remain near Dufton village, and were involved in the important, sheep and wool trade. The fleeces were taken by pack horses across the Pennines into the textile towns of Yorkshire. Eventually many Dufton families were to settle in the Leeds and Bradford, working in the wool trade.
The Dufton families that remain in Cumbria became involved in rearing cattle, and cattle droving. During the mid1600s, the political situation with Scotland became peaceful, and cattle droving with Scotland flourished. Many Duftons lived at Hesket in the Forest, which was an ideal location, as the many Scottish droves increased. The various Dufton farms were able to provide safe nourishing grazing, shelter and provisions for the drovers.
We have produced family charts, going back from the present day, to the earliest of times. Our charts have been placed on Ancestry.com and Find my Past.
Also at our...Durham Dufton chart at the web address below,
And a chart of the Duftons of Cumbria and Durham, at the address below,
Internet solutions provided by Namesco Limited - Tuesday 28 June, 2022