Select Noyes Surname Genealogy

The English surname Noyes derived from the Biblical name of Noah.  Early spellings were Noy and Noye.  Noyes represented the patronymic form.

The name may have been introduced by returning Crusaders from the Holy Land who would christen their children with Biblical or Hebrew names.  Or perhaps the name derived from an actor in a medieval pageant who played the part of Noah and his ark

Select Noyes Resources on The Internet

Select Noyes Ancestry

EnglandEarly origins of the name have been suggested in Cornwall and in Suffolk in East Anglia:
  • the Noys of Cornwall came from St. Bunyan in the far west of the county where they had been minor gentry since the mid-1400’s.  William Noy of this family rose to be Attorney General of England under Charles I in 1631.  Noye has remained a surname in Cornwall. 
  • while the Noyse name was to be found in parishes in the northern part of Suffolk at an earlier time.  The Earl of Suffolk was the landowner there and at Ramridge in Hampshire where the Noyes name was first recorded in 1432.
Noyes continued at Ramridge for more than two hundred years.

From this family came Nicholas Noyes who had moved to Cholderton in Wiltshire by 1545. 
By that time there were two related Noyes lines in Wiltshire, one at Cholderton and the other at Urchfont.  The Rev. William Noyes,
an Anglican clergyman of Puritan leanings, was appointed the rector of Cholderton in 1602.  Two of his sons – James and Nicholas - succeeded him to the Puritan ministry in the Massachusetts Bay Colony. 

Later Noyes in Wiltshire were to be found at Burbage and Pewsey. 

“Septimus Noyes was born in Burbage in 1781.  He served in the 1st King’s Own Dragoon Guards between 1807 and 1817 and fought at the Battle of Waterloo.  He then returned to Burbage to be a butcher and died there in 1855.”

Also from Ramridge in Hampshire came Peter Noyes, the MP for Andover in 1614, who moved to Berkshire where his family became established, first at Trunkwell and then at Southcote, among the Berkshire gentry.  More than one of them buttressed their finances by marrying heiresses. 

These three counties – Hampshire, Wiltshire, and Berkshire – remained the main places for Noyes in England.

  Noyes has been very much a New England name, coming from the Noyes of Wiltshire who arrived there in 1634.

New England
.  Three Puritan preachers – the brothers James and Nicholas Noyes, together with their cousin Thomas Parker – departed London on the Mary and John for the Massachusetts Bay Colony.  They established a new town and church at Newbury in 1635.  The James Noyes House, built there around 1646 on Parker Street, still stands. 

The Noyes lineage in America was covered in Henry Noyes’ 1904 book
Genealogical Record of Some of the Noyes descendants of James, Nicholas and Peter Noyes. 

Early Noyes were clergymen.  James, the son of James Noyes, was a minister at Stonington in Connecticut.  He was in 1701 a founder of Yale University where Noyes have attended almost up to the present time.

Noyes were to remain at Stonington in Connecticut for the next two hundred years.  A branch of the family crossed the border into Rhode Island where James Noyes, a doctor, had acquired land at Westerly in the early 1700’s. Colonel Joseph Noyes was a member of the Rhode Island House of Representatives in 1776.  His son Thomas, who fought in the Revolutionary War, married his cousin Mary Noyes. 

Meanwhile Nicholas, the son of Nicholas Noyes, was a minister in Salem at the time of the Salem witch trials.

“On September 22, 1692, Noyes had officiated as clergyman at the final hangings of those accused of witchcraft.  It is reported that he turned toward the suspended bodies of the victims and said: ‘What a sad thing it is to see eight firebrands of hell hanging there.’”

From Nicholas the father came Noyes lines in New Hampshire and Maine. 
Joseph Noyes moved to Rockingham county in New Hampshire in the early 1700’s: 
  • his descendant John Noyes moved to Brattleboro, Vermont in 1800 where he began one of the earliest chain stores in America.  He later served as a US Congressman  
  • while John’s son John Humphrey Noyes turned out to be a radical religious leader and utopian socialist.  On the basis of his principles he founded the Oneida community in upstate New York in 1848.  It broke up in 1879 and John Humphrey fled to Canada. 
Another Joseph Noyes, the son of Captain Cutting Noyes, departed around 1730 for Portland, Maine where he was an officiating magistrate for many years.  A later Joseph Noyes, born there in 1798, was a ship chandler who served as a US Congressman in the 1830’s.

Later Noyes
.  In many cases it was the case of heading West during the 19th century. 

But in the case of Crosby Noyes, born in Maine in 1825, it was the case of heading south to the nation’s capital Washington DC.  Starting with nothing, he became a reporter for the Washington Evening Star and in 1867 was able to buy the newspaper.  Ownership passed from Crosby through the generations to Frank, to Newbolt Sr, and to Newbolt Jr who eventually sold the newspaper in 1975.  

Edward F. Noyes was orphaned at a young age in Massachusetts and lost a leg during the Civil War.  He was elected Governor of Ohio in 1871.  Colonel D.K. Noyes was also crippled during the Civil War.  He was a pioneer settler in Sauk county, Wisconsin. 

The notable Noyes academics were not just at Yale:
  • William A. Noyes, born in Iowa, chaired the Chemistry department at the University of Illinois from 1907 to 1926.  During that time he was the dominant figure in American chemistry circles.  His cousin Arthur and sons Albert and Richard were also professors of chemistry. 
  • while George Rapall Noyes, born in Massachusetts, came to Berkeley University in California in 1901 to start up a program of Slavic studies.  In 1919 he became its Professor of Slavic Languages, in which capacity he served until his retirement as Professor Emeritus in 1943.
Australia.  Silas Noyes from Berkshire, a blacksmith by trade, was convicted of selling stolen brass and was transported to NSW on the Georgiana in 1831.  His wife Letitia and seven children joined him there three years later.  The family settled in East Maitland.  After Silas died in 1848 Letitia remarried.  

Select Noyes Miscellany

If you would like to read more, click on the miscellany page for further stories and accounts:

Select Noyes Names

William Noy was a leading lawyer in Stuart England.  He was appointed the Attorney General in 1631.
The Rev. James Noyes
was a founder of Yale University in 1701.
Crosby Noyes
acquired the Washington Evening Star in 1867 and his family held the newspaper until 1975.
Alfred Noyes
was an English poet of the early 1900’s, best known for his ballads

Select Noyes Today
  • 1,000 in the UK (most numerous in London)
  • 4,000 in America (most numerous in California) 
  • 1,000 elsewhere (most numerous in Canada)

PS.  You might want to check out the surnames page on this website.  It covers surname genealogy in this and companion websites for more than 800 surnames.

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