Anglo-Saxon in origin. It was a name given to a cheese-maker or seller of cheese. The surname Cheesay is derived from the Old English word cese and the West Saxon word cyse, which both mean cheese. Occupational names frequently refer to the principal object associated with the activity of the original bearer, such as tools or products. These types of occupational surnames are called metonymic surnames. The surname Cheesay belongs to this class of names.
Early Origins of the Cheesay family
Norfolk, where they held a family seat from ancient times.
Early History of the Cheesay family
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Cheesay Spelling Variations
hundred years, the English language lacked any comprehensive system of spelling rules. Consequently, spelling variations in names are frequently found in early Anglo-Saxon and later Anglo-Norman documents. One person's name was often spelled several different ways over a lifetime. The recorded variations of Cheesay include Cheese, Chese, Chuse, Chouse, Cheser, Chesse and others.
Early Notables of the Cheesay family (pre 1700)
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Migration of the Cheesay family to the New World and Oceana
Thousands of English families boarded ships sailing to the New World in the hope of escaping the unrest found in England at this time. Although the search for opportunity and freedom from persecution abroad took the lives of many because of the cramped conditions and unsanitary nature of the vessels, the opportunity perceived in the growing colonies of North America beckoned. Many of the settlers who survived the journey went on to make important contributions to the transplanted cultures of their adopted countries. The Cheesay were among these contributors, for they have been located in early North American records: Edmund Cheese who arrived in New York in 1832 and Robert Cheese in Mississippi in 1890.
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