Cracknall History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Early Origins of the Cracknall family

The surname Cracknall was first found in Stirlingshire, where the name may have been an occupational name for someone who bakes biscuits as "a cracknel is a kind of crisp biscuit." [1]

However, another source disagrees with this theory stating the name is from a "dweller at 'Craca's Slope' or Corner from the [ Anglo-Saxon Craca, genit. Cracan + heal(h] 2 Craca's Hall [Old English heall] Hardly a nickname from the biscuit so called." [2]

And another source claims the name is from Craigneill, a location name in Edinburgh. [3]

The name seems to be from northern England too as Elias de Crackenhall was listed in Yorkshire in the Curia Regis Rolls of 1220. A very rare name, the next listing of the family was more than 300 years later in 1524, when Robert Craknell was listed in the Subsidy Rolls for Staffordshire. [4]

Crakehall is a township, in the parish and union of Bedale, wapentake of Hang-East, in the North Riding of Yorkshire and Elmer with Crakehill is a township, in the parish of Topcliffe, union of Thirsk, wapentake of Birdforth, also in the North Riding of Yorkshire, [5]

Great and Little Crakehall date back to the Domesday Book when they were listed as Crachele [6] and literally meant "nook of land frequented by crows or ravens." [7]

Early History of the Cracknall family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Cracknall research. Another 97 words (7 lines of text) covering the years 1462, 1567 and 1571 are included under the topic Early Cracknall History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Cracknall Spelling Variations

In Medieval times, spelling and translation were not nearly so highly developed as today. They were generally carried out according to the sound and intuition of the bearer. For that reason spelling variations are extremely common among early Scottish names. Cracknall has been spelled Cracknell, Craigingelt, Craigneill, Craignall, Craignell, Cracknall and many more.

Early Notables of the Cracknall family (pre 1700)

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

Migration of the Cracknall family

Unrest, poverty, and persecution caused thousands to look for opportunity and freedom in the North American colonies. The crossing was long, overcrowded, and unsanitary, though, and came only at great expense. Many Strathclyde families settled on the east coast of North America in communities that would form the backbone of what would become the great nations of the United States and Canada. The American War of Independence caused those who remained loyal to England to move north to Canada as United Empire Loyalists. In the 20th century, Strathclyde and other Scottish families across North America began to recover their collective heritage through highland games and Clan societies. Among them: William Craknall who arrived in New England in 1670.


Contemporary Notables of the name Cracknall (post 1700) +

  • Walter Borthwick Cracknall (1897-1901), British Chief Judge of Zanzibar


  1. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  2. ^ Harrison, Henry, Surnames of the United Kingdom: A Concise Etymological Dictionary Baltimore: Geneological Publishing Company, 2013. Print
  3. ^ Barber, Henry, British Family Names London: Elliot Stock, 62 Paternoster Row, 1894. Print.
  4. ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  5. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  6. ^ Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
  7. ^ Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)


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