This is an English locational surname. It probably originates from the village of Silverton, in the Exe Valley, in Devonshire, although the surname itself does not appear to be recorded in the area until the middle of the 18th century. This is not surprising as locational surnames were generally 'from' names. That is to say names given to a person after he or sometimes she, left their original homes to move somewhere else. The easiest wat to identy such strangers being to call them after the place from whence they came. Research indicates that Silverton and Silverthorne are essentially the same name, the latter being recorded in the county of Somerset in the14th century. Both are said to derive from the pre 7th century Olde English words 'silver porn' meaning 'white thorn,' trees which are famous in the West Country for their ability to blossom at Christmas time. Probably the earliest recording is that of Roger Selverthorn, in the Somerset Rolls for the year 1327, whilst Dorothie Silverton was a witness at the church of St Botolphs Without, in the city of London, on July 23rd 1565. This was during the reign of Queen Elizabeth 1st of England, 1558 - 1603. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
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