Recorded in many spellings including Croston, Croxton, Croxon, Croxson and the dialectals Scraston, Scroston and Scroxton, this is an English surname. It is locational from either a place called Croston in the county of Lancashire, near Chorley, or Cross Stone in the West Riding of Yorkshire, near to the town of Halifax. The placename is composed of the [pre 7th century word "cross", meaning a market cross, and "tun", meaning a farm or settlement, hence the settlement by the cross. Locational surnames were those that were given to the lord of the manor and his descendants as may well be the case here. Alternatively during the Middle Ages when migration for the purpose of job-seeking was becoming more common, people often took as their surname the name of their former village as a means of identification. This often resulted in a wide dispersal of the name into a number of different spellings. Early examples of the surname recordings include those of Hugh Croston who married Catherine Smith, at Croston, on January 14th 1541, and in London those of Thomas Scraston who was christened at St Katherines by the Tower (of London) on February 29th 1739, and a century later Joseph Scroxton married Elizabeth Lench at St Botolphs Bishopgate. Thomas Croston (1603 - 1663) was a famous colonel in the parliamentarian army during the English Civil War. He was also militia commissioner for Chester in 1650. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was sometimes known as the Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
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