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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright © 2000 - 2018


Cearley comes from the kingdom of Dalriada in ancient Scotland. It was a name for a person who worked as a worker in brass. The name Cearley is an Anglicized form of the Gaelic "ceard", which refers to a craftsman, a traveling tinker who repaired pots and kettles, and a worker in brass. The family is believed to have made many of the Highland plaid brooches of brass.

Cearley Early Origins



The surname Cearley was first found in Ayrshire (Gaelic: Siorrachd Inbhir Àir), formerly a county in the southwestern Strathclyde region of Scotland, that today makes up the Council Areas of South, East, and North Ayrshire, where they held a family seat from very ancient times, some say well before the Norman Conquest and the arrival of Duke William at Hastings in 1066 A.D.

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Cearley Spelling Variations


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Cearley Spelling Variations



The translation of Gaelic names in the Middle Ages was not a task undertaken with great care. Records from that era show an enormous number of spelling variations, even in names referring to the same person. Over the years Cearley has appeared as Caird, Kaird, Kerd, Keard, Ceard, Kerde, McIncaird, McKincaird, Kincaird and many more.

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Cearley Early History


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Cearley Early History



This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Cearley research. Another 331 words (24 lines of text) covering the years 1275 and 1600 are included under the topic Early Cearley History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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Cearley Early Notables (pre 1700)


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Cearley Early Notables (pre 1700)



More information is included under the topic Early Cearley Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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Cearley In Ireland


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Cearley In Ireland



Some of the Cearley family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 122 words (9 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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The Great Migration


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The Great Migration



Ancestors of many of the Dalriadan families who crossed the Atlantic still live along the east coast of the United States and Canada. Some Scottish settlers arrived in Canada during the American War of Independence as United Empire Loyalists, while others stayed south to fight for a new nation. The descendants of Scottish settlers in both countries began to rediscover their heritage in the 19th and 20th centuries through Clan societies and highland games. An inquiry into the early roots of North American families has revealed a number of immigrants bearing the name Cearley or a variant listed above:

Cearley Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • Catherine Cearley, aged 22, who settled in America, in 1892

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Contemporary Notables of the name Cearley (post 1700)


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Contemporary Notables of the name Cearley (post 1700)



  • Carlene Cearley, American actress

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Cearley Family Crest Products


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Cearley Family Crest Products




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See Also


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