Craswell History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms 

Early Origins of the Craswell family

The surname Craswell was first found in Renfrewshire (Gaelic: Siorrachd Rinn Friù), a historic county of Scotland, today encompassing the Council Areas of Renfrew, East Renfrewshire, and Iverclyde, in the Strathclyde region of southwestern Scotland where they were recorded as a family of great antiquity seated at Carswell in the parish of Neilston in that shire, and later branched to Carnswell in the barony of Carnwath in Lanarkshire, and to Carswell in the barony of Hassendean in Roxburghshire.

"A family of Carsewells, who derived their name from Carsewell in the parish of Neilston, are said to have been settled in Renfrewshire for centuries, but they seldom appear in the public records. There is also a Carswell (in 15. cent., Creswell or Carswell) in the barony of Carnwath, Lanarkshire and there was a tenement of the same name in the barony of Hassendean, Roxburghshire. "

Alexander de Cressewell witnessed a charter by Roland of Galloway, son of Vchtred, c. 1200 and William Cresswell was Chancellor of Moray between 1281-1298. [1]

King Edward I's short lived invasion of Scotland was a difficult time for many including this family as Robert de Cressewelle was one of the Scots prisoners of war taken at Dunbar Castle in 1296. Symon de Cresseville of the county of Roxburgh, and David de Cressewelle of Lanarkshire rendered homage (to King Edward I) in 1296. [1]

Further to the south in England, the Hundreorum Rolls of 1723 list Richared de Carswall; (Dominus) de Carswill; and William de Karswill as all holding lands in Devon at that time. [2]

The Cresswell variant hails from Cresswell, Northumberland and there the name literally meant Cress-Spring dervived from the Old English caerse, cress + wiell (a, a spring: cp. Old English wiellcaerse, watercress) [3]

"The district comprises the townships of Cresswell and Ellington, the former of which was a possession of the Cresswell family previous to the reign of King John: the surface is generally level; and there is a good freestone-quarry. The old tower and mansionhouse of the Cresswells front the sea, and have in view the fine beach and sands of Druridge bay; the tower is 21½ feet long, and 16½ feet wide, within, and consists of a strong room vaulted with stone, on the groundfloor, and two rooms above, approached by a circular stone staircase. The new mansion, Cresswell Hall, the seat of A. J. Baker Cresswell, Esq., is a magnificent structure, erected in 1822." [4]

Important Dates for the Craswell family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Craswell research. Another 60 words (4 lines of text) covering the years 1296, 1373, 1603, 1560, 1572, 1688, 1743, 1710, 1713, 1713, 1715, 1654, 1712, 1709, 1557 and 1623 are included under the topic Early Craswell History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Craswell Spelling Variations

Prior to the first dictionaries, scribes spelled words according to sound. This, and the fact that Scottish names were repeatedly translated from Gaelic to English and back, contributed to the enormous number of spelling variations in Scottish names. Craswell has been spelled Carswell, Cresswell, Carsewell, Cressville, Carswele, Kersewell, Cressewell, Chriswell and many more.

Early Notables of the Craswell family (pre 1700)

Notable amongst the family at this time was John Carsewell ( fl. 1560-1572), Scottish Bishop of the Isles, was in his earlier years chaplain to the Earl of Argyll and rector of Kilmartin. Richard Cresswell (1688-1743), was an English politician; Member of...
Another 40 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Craswell Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the Craswell family

In such difficult times, the difficulties of raising the money to cross the Atlantic to North America did not seem so large compared to the problems of keeping a family together in Scotland. It was a journey well worth the cost, since it was rewarded with land and freedom the Scots could not find at home. The American War of Independence solidified that freedom, and many of those settlers went on to play important parts in the forging of a great nation. Among them: John Carswell who settled in Charles Town [Charleston], South Carolina in 1767 with his wife Anne, and his children George, Joseph, Thomas, and Rebecca.

Contemporary Notables of the name Craswell (post 1700)

  • Dennis "Denny" Craswell (b. 1948), American actor, known for It's a Bikini World (1967)
  • Ellen Craswell (1932-2008), American politician, candidate in the 1996 Washington gubernatorial election
  • Bruce Craswell, American politician, Representative from Washington 1st District, 1998 [5]

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Citations

  1. ^ Black, George F., The Surnames of Scotland Their Origin, Meaning and History. New York: New York Public Library, 1946. Print. (ISBN 0-87104-172-3)
  2. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  3. ^ Harrison, Henry, Surnames of the United Kingdom: A Concise Etymological Dictionary Baltimore: Geneological Publishing Company, 2013. Print
  4. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  5. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, November 13) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html
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