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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright 2000 - 2016

Where did the English Capley family come from? What is the English Capley family crest and coat of arms? When did the Capley family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the Capley family history?

Capley is a name that first reached England following the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Capley family lived in Herefordshire. The name refers to the family's former residence in La Chapelle, Normandy.

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It is only in the last few hundred years that the English language has been standardized. For that reason, Anglo-Norman surnames like Capley are characterized by many spelling variations. Scribes and monks in the Middle Ages spelled names they sounded, so it is common to find several variations that refer to a single person. As the English language changed and incorporated elements of other European languages such as Norman French and Latin, even literate people regularly changed the spelling of their names. The variations of the name Capley include Capel, Capell, Caple, Cappel, Keppel and others.

First found in Herefordshire where another source claims that name was derived from "the ancestor of Lord Albemarle [who] was Arnord-Joost van Keppel, lord of Voerst, a descendant of one of the most ancient houses in Guerlderland, [Holland] who accompanied King WIlliam III to England in 1688, and was by him advanced to the title still enjoyed by the family. According to 'Folks of Shields,' the name is equivalent to De Capella." [1]


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Capley research. Another 175 words (12 lines of text) covering the years 1515, 1496, 1503, 1511, 1515, 1585, 1658, 1586, 1656, 1608, 1649, 1631, 1683, 1608, 1649, 1638, 1696, 1697, 1743, 1739, 1743, 1722 and 1743 are included under the topic Early Capley History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Another 343 words (24 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Capley Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Some of the Capley family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 37 words (3 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Faced with the chaos present in England at that time, many English families looked towards the open frontiers of the New World with its opportunities to escape oppression and starvation. People migrated to North America, as well as Australia and Ireland in droves, paying exorbitant rates for passages in cramped, unsafe ships. Many of the settlers did not make the long passage alive, but those who did see the shores of North America were welcomed with great opportunity. Many of the families that came from England went on to make essential contributions to the emerging nations of Canada and the United States. Some of the first immigrants to cross the Atlantic and come to North America carried the name Capley, or a variant listed above: William Cappell who settled in Virginia in 1635; John Cappell settled in Virginia in 1656; Thomas Cappells settled in Virginia in 1720.

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  • Lieutenant Commander Joe H. Capley, U.S. Navy, pilot during Operation Deep Freeze 1965 and 1966, eponym of Mount Capley, Antarctica


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The motto was originally a war cry or slogan. Mottoes first began to be shown with arms in the 14th and 15th centuries, but were not in general use until the 17th century. Thus the oldest coats of arms generally do not include a motto. Mottoes seldom form part of the grant of arms: Under most heraldic authorities, a motto is an optional component of the coat of arms, and can be added to or changed at will; many families have chosen not to display a motto.

Motto: Fide et fortitudine
Motto Translation: By fidelity and fortitude.

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  1. ^ Lowe, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.

Other References

  1. Hitching, F.K and S. Hitching. References to English Surnames in 1601-1602. Walton On Thames: 1910. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0181-3).
  2. Leeson, Francis L. Dictionary of British Peerages. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1986. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-1121-5).
  3. Dunkling, Leslie. Dictionary of Surnames. Toronto: Collins, 1998. Print. (ISBN 0004720598).
  4. Hanks, Hodges, Mills and Room. The Oxford Names Companion. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2002. Print. (ISBN 0-19-860561-7).
  5. Crozier, William Armstrong Edition. Crozier's General Armory A Registry of American Families Entitled to Coat Armor. New York: Fox, Duffield, 1904. Print.
  6. Burke, Sir Bernard. Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Peerage and Baronetage, The Privy Council, Knightage and Compainonage. London: Burke Publishing, 1921. Print.
  7. Weis, Frederick Lewis, Walter Lee Sheppard and David Faris. Ancestral Roots of Sixty Colonists Who Came to New England Between 1623 and 1650 7th Edition. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0806313676).
  8. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  9. Papworth, J.W and A.W Morant. Ordinary of British Armorials. London: T.Richards, 1874. Print.
  10. Virkus, Frederick A. Ed. Immigrant Ancestors A List of 2,500 Immigrants to America Before 1750. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1964. Print.
  11. ...

The Capley Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Capley Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

This page was last modified on 10 November 2015 at 16:11.

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