The name Barnessley reached England
in the great wave of migration following the Norman Conquest
of 1066. The Barnessley family lived in Worcestershire
, where they held an ancient seat and estates.
Early Origins of the Barnessley family
The surname Barnessley was first found in Gloucestershire
and South Yorkshire
at Barnsley. Of the locales, the town in Yorkshire
is by far the larger originating in the historic West Riding of Yorkshire
. This town dates back to the Domesday Book
of 1086 where it was listed as Berneslai. However, the Gloucestershire
parish which was originally part of historic Lancashire
dates back further to 802 when it was listed as Bearmodeslea. It too was listed in the Domesday Book
but had a different spelling of Bernesleis. Both locales were derived from the Old English personal name
+ "leah" and literally meant "woodland clearing of a man called Beornmod (Beorn)." CITATION[CLOSE]
Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
The family is conjecturally descended from a Norman noble Ilbert de Lacy who settled in the village of Barnsley in the West Riding of Yorkshire
at the time of the Norman Conquest
. Ilbert was Lord of the Manor of Barnsley.
Early History of the Barnessley family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Barnessley research.Another 97 words (7 lines of text) covering the years 155 and 1550 are included under the topic Early Barnessley History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Barnessley Spelling Variations
Before the advent of the printing press and the first dictionaries, the English language was not standardized. Sound was what guided spelling in the Middle Ages, so one person's name was often recorded under several variations during a single lifetime. Spelling variations
were common, even among the names of the most literate people. Known variations of the Barnessley family name include Barnsley, Barnsely, Barnseley, Barnsly and others.
Early Notables of the Barnessley family (pre 1700)
More information is included under the topic Early Barnessley Notables in all our PDF Extended History products
and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Barnessley family to the New World and Oceana
To escape the political and religious chaos of this era, thousands of English families began to migrate to the New World in search of land and freedom from religious and political persecution. The passage was expensive and the ships were dark, crowded, and unsafe; however, those who made the voyage safely were encountered opportunities that were not available to them in their homeland. Many of the families that reached the New World at this time went on to make important contributions to the emerging nations of the United States and Canada. Research into various historical records has revealed some of first members of the Barnessley family to immigrate North America: Richard Barnssley and his wife who settled in Boston, Massachusetts in 1766.