Checkley History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Early Origins of the Checkley family

The surname Checkley was first found in Staffordshire at Checkley, a village and civil parish in the district of Staffordshire Moorlands. There are actually two other Checkley villages: one in Cheshire and another in Herefordshire. Both of the latter are dated after the Domesday Book while the former was originally listed there as Cedla and later in 1196 as Chekeleg. All of the place names literally meant "wood or clearing of a man called Ceaddica or Ceacca." [1] Conjecturally, the surname is descended from the tenant of the lands of Checkley, held by Otto from the King, a Norman noble who was recorded in the Domesday Book census of 1086.

Checkley Hall is a small country house in the parish of Checkley cum Wrinehill, Cheshire. It was built in 1694 by the Delves family of Doddington.

Early History of the Checkley family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Checkley research. Another 84 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1190, 1281 and 1447 are included under the topic Early Checkley History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Checkley Spelling Variations

Before English spelling was standardized a few hundred years ago, spelling variations of names were a common occurrence. Elements of Latin, Norman French and other languages became incorporated into English throughout the Middle Ages, and name spellings changed even among the literate. The variations of the surname Checkley include Checkley, Checkleigh, Checklee, Checkly, Chackley, Chackly and many more.

Early Notables of the Checkley family (pre 1700)

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


United States Checkley migration to the United States +

In England at this time, the uncertainty of the political and religious environment of the time caused many families to board ships for distant British colonies in the hopes of finding land and opportunity, and escaping persecution. The voyages were expensive, crowded, and difficult, though, and many arrived in North America sick, starved, and destitute. Those who did make it, however, were greeted with greater opportunities and freedoms that they could have experienced at home. Many of those families went on to make important contributions to the young nations in which they settled. Early immigration records have shown some of the first Checkleys to arrive on North American shores:

Checkley Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • John Checkley, who arrived in Boston, Massachusetts in 1648 [2]
  • Anthony Checkley, who landed in Boston, Massachusetts in 1662 [2]

Australia Checkley migration to Australia +

Emigration to Australia followed the First Fleets of convicts, tradespeople and early settlers. Early immigrants include:

Checkley Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • John Checkley, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Asiatic" in 1849 [3]

New Zealand Checkley migration to New Zealand +

Emigration to New Zealand followed in the footsteps of the European explorers, such as Captain Cook (1769-70): first came sealers, whalers, missionaries, and traders. By 1838, the British New Zealand Company had begun buying land from the Maori tribes, and selling it to settlers, and, after the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840, many British families set out on the arduous six month journey from Britain to Aotearoa to start a new life. Early immigrants include:

Checkley Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Mr. George Checkley, (b. 1828), aged 30, British carpenter travelling from Gravesend aboard the ship "Indiana" arriving in Lyttelton, Christchurch, South Island, New Zealand on 28th November 1858 [4]
  • Mrs. Eliza Checkley, (b. 1834), aged 24, British settler travelling from Gravesend aboard the ship "Indiana" arriving in Lyttelton, Christchurch, South Island, New Zealand on 28th November 1858 [4]
  • Mr. Tom Checkley, (b. 1854), aged 4, British settler travelling from Gravesend aboard the ship "Indiana" arriving in Lyttelton, Christchurch, South Island, New Zealand on 28th November 1858 [4]
  • Mr. Jonathon Checkley, (b. 1857), aged 1, British settler travelling from Gravesend aboard the ship "Indiana" arriving in Lyttelton, Christchurch, South Island, New Zealand on 28th November 1858 [4]
  • Caroline Checkley, aged 18, who arrived in Lyttelton, New Zealand aboard the ship "Accrington" in 1863


  1. ^ Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
  2. ^ Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
  3. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) The ASIATIC 1849. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1849Asiatic.htm
  4. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 17th October 2018). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html


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